Long Story Short
A new set of stats about cannabis use in the U.S. is painting an interesting picture of what today’s marijuana scene looks like. One of the biggest things those numbers point to is a rise in the number of people who are trying weed for the first time. Every day, there is an average of 7,000 Americans who try pot for the first time.
The numbers come from a new analysis released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). According to the new stats, the U.S. has seen a pretty big jump in the number of people who use cannabis.
To be more precise, there’s been a 35 percent increase in the number of people who use marijuana. In 2002, 6.2 percent of Americans 12 or older used it. Now it’s up to 8.4 percent.
There’s also been a fairly big increase in the number of heavy pot smokers. Right now, 2.5 percent of Americans use cannabis on a daily basis. That’s almost double the number of daily smokers in 2002.
One of the most telling numbers has to do how many people are trying weed for the first time. According to the most recent stats, there were 2.5 million inhabitants who started using cannabis in 2014. That averages out to 7,000 new tokers a day.
Teens And Cannabis
Another prominent figure deals with the number of young cannabis users. The CDC said that the number of 12 to 17-year-olds who use marijuana is dropping. Since 2002 there’s been a 10 percent decrease in the number of teens who used marijuana in the previous month.
This stat could be substantial for the legalization movement. That’s because many anti-pot arguments claim that legalization would harm young people. But that argument isn’t supported by these most recent stats.
What The Numbers Mean
So what do all these numbers mean? Many experts said that more and more people are viewing cannabis as less harmful. The more that weed becomes legal, and the more mainstream it becomes, the more people see it as safe and acceptable.
And that trend is likely to continue into the future. For example, five states have key legalization bills on the ballots this fall. Voters in California, Arizona, Maine, Massachusetts, and Nevada could choose to make recreational weed legal in their states.