Every time I hear or see a news release about the big money garnered from the sale of recreational marijuana, I think of some of the lyrics from the song by the O'Jays (1973) called “For The Love Of Money.”

"Money, money, money, money

Some people* got to have it...

Talk about cash money, money...

For the love of money...

For that lean, mean, mean green

Almighty dollar, money

...For the love of money

People don't care who they hurt or beat

For the love of money...

For a small piece of paper

It carries a lot of weight...

Almighty dollar

(*communities)

I did not know for years that  "reefers" were marijuana cigarettes.  Recreational marijuana use was illegal, as it still is  federally. People were arrested if caught using marijuana – also known as: pot, weed, dope, grass, joint, Mary Jane.  Of course, folks belonging to certain groups were the ones arrested. Can you guess or know which groups?

For years, people were warned about the dangers of marijuana use: mind-altering effect, addictive, intoxicating, producing paranoia, difficulty focusing or remembering things, lung damage, nausea, seizures, etc. 

I once gave a friend a ride to Chicago, and while driving there, she lit up a joint.  I told her she had to put it out; it gave me a headache. Reluctantly, she did.  She was given the choice of putting it out or she getting out of the car.

Since I was driving, I did not need to be affected negatively by inhaling pot.

Now, I do not object to the medical use of marijuana. However, I join police officers who have voiced their concerns about people driving under the influence of marijuana just as much as the concern about people driving under the influence of alcohol. 

But this concern takes a backseat, I guess, when it comes to the money that the legal purchase and use of marijuana offers communities. 

'Tis The Big M, Marijuana or Money?