A majority of voters on the swing states of Florida and Ohio support both medical and recreational use of marijuana, according to survey results. Men were more likely to approve it than women, and the majority of people said “they wouldn’t use it if it were legalized”.
Nine of every 10 voters in each state supported the use of medical marijuana. In Florida, 51 percent were in favor for its legalization for personal use, with men supporting it in a 57 percent and women in a 49 percent. Also, recreational use was highly supported by voters between the ages of 18 to 34.
When we see the numbers in Ohio, the rate of support for recreational use is a little higher (53 percent) with men in favor by a 59 percent and women with 47 percent. Just like Florida, 70 percent of young people agree with using marijuana for recreational purposes.
When it comes to voting in favor of marijuana for medical use, only a few people were against it, and no difference between men and women was showed in the survey. But the scenario is quite different when people get asked about recreational use, with men broadly supporting it as women are more conservative.
Dr. Tammy Anderson, a professor of sociology and criminal justice at the University of Delaware, said that “Men historically and presently report a higher rate of illegal drug use than do women. Men smoke marijuana more frequently and more recently than women so a discrepancy would make sense. They want it to be legalized so they don’t get in trouble,” according to The Christian Science Monitor.
Dr. Anderson also states that males show higher levels of law-breaking behaviors, and women are more concerned with social expectations, so the difference of opinion is strictly related to social factors.
“If men are from Mars and women are from Venus, then the Red Planet might be the most spacey place. That’s because men are more likely than women to support legalization of marijuana for recreational use,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll. “Not surprisingly support for the change is linked to age, with younger voters more likely to see personal use of pot as a good thing,” according to the survey.
Experts say this results reinforce the gendered stereotypes and inequalities that hold back the women’s participation in drug policy reform, creating obstacles to ending the marijuana prohibition in the U.S., according to the Christian Science Monitor.