Talking about . . . legalized marijuana
As the push for legalization spreads across the US, a different conversation emerges around marijuana. Proponents see this as an advance in freedom and liberty, trusting adults to decide what is best about a substance that is equated with alcohol and nicotine. On the other side, critics see the march to legalization as yet another step in the loosening moral discipline of our country. What are the new questions to ask? How do we envision our lives where/when marijuana is legal? What are results from states with early legalization? How should tax revenues be allocated?
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Background reading (optional)
While you don't need to be an expert on this topic, sometimes people want background information. Our partner, AllSides, has prepared a variety of articles reflecting multiple sides of this topic.
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Now that you are all together, here we go!
This Living Room Conversation flows through five rounds of questions and a closing. Some rounds ask you to answer each question. Others feature multiple questions that serve as conversation starters — you need only respond to the one or two you find most interesting.
Before you begin your conversation, please go over the Conversation Ground Rules with your participants.
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One. Why are we here?
What interested you or drew you to this topic?
Two. Your core values
- what sense of purpose or duty guides you in life? What is your mission statement?
- what would your best friend say about who you are and what makes you tick?
- what are your hopes and concerns for your community and/or the country, now and long-term?
Three. Your thoughts and concerns.
Remember that the goal of this Living Room Conversation is for each participant to listen to and learn about the different opinions within the group to see where you might share interests, intentions and goals.
- how will legalization change our community?
- what are your thoughts about edibles and other forms of marijuana?
- assuming there is substantial tax revenue, how would you recommend allocating this revenue?
- in one sentence, share what was most meaningful or valuable to you in the experience of this Living Room Conversation;
- what new understanding or common ground did you find within this topic?
- has this conversation changed your perception of anyone in this group, including yourself?
Five. Accomplishment and moving forward
- name one important thing that was accomplished here;
- is there a next step you would like to take based upon the conversation you just had?
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