I agree with The Young Turks, this is the beginning of the end for Cannabis prohibition. Two states have recently legalized the plant, and many others have permitted it for medical use. A few years this would have been unthinkable, but times change. When Bill Clinton proposed ending discrimination against homosexuals in the military in the early 90s, there was a huge backlash, the measure was withdrawn and the whole controversy hurt his presidency. Just a few months ago Obama did the same thing, and won praise from his own party. The measure was successful. A few years ago Spain tried to ban smoking in public buildings, and the law failed. A few years after that the government tried again and the law was respected.
I think the same thing is happening in America, probably because most of population are baby boomers or younger, and most of them have at least tried pot and generally come out none the worse for wear. In the end the hysteria against cannabis does not match the reality, and people know it. And time is only proving to reenforce the point. As states legalize cannabis and find that the world does not end, acceptance will grow.
The only party which is holding things up is surprisingly the Obama Administration, which continues to raid cannabis dispensaries. Why they are doing it I find bizarre. Obama himself has a long history of drugs in his youth, and seems to have done all right. I would find it difficult and hypocritical that Obama personally is against Cannabis. Obama´s base and the Democratic Party is hardly baying for the Federal Government to go against the wishes of voters in states, and conduct raids on sellers of cannabis. Even the Republican Party is generally muted on the issue.
So who is driving this unpopular crusade against cannabis? I suspect it is people like the DEA, who have a lot to lose if Cannabis is legalized. All those jobs and fiefdoms are at stake. With less illegal drugs and less drug lords there is less work for the DEA. Big Pharma may also want Cannabis to be kept illegal, since pot sometimes competes with prescription drugs.
The next few years should be interesting. As acceptance grows eventually the president will stop opposing Cannabis.