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The illegal drug business is a billion dollar industry, involving countries near and far in the importing and distribution of substances that alter the brain chemistry of those indulging in their use. Just like in the alcohol industry, many individuals became wealthy by knowing how to grow the crops and process the intoxicating substance themselves and sell it on the underground market. Then the government, realizing the tremendous amount of money to be made, ended the prohibition of alcohol and began issuing licenses, for a fee of course, for those wishing to manufacture and distribute it. They put a government seal on the bottle and charged sales tax for it. The sale of alcohol, or liquor, became a legitimate business. Now, with the legalization of marijuana also comes government regulations as to who may grow the crops that produce the drugs, who may process, package and sell the drugs and even who may legally buy the drugs. "Medicinal marijuana" can be taxed and therefore generate revenue for the government. But other drugs, not yet declared "legal" or acknowleged for their medicinal value, are stil being sold in the underground economy. Across the world lands are being seized and wars are being fought over the ownership and control of land where crops are grown that are processed into drugs and placed on the world market. The issue is really about control of the billion dollar drug business. Is the U.S. government taking over the illegal drug business? Jamie Sevier, community activist and C.E.O. of People Realizing Ourselves (PRO) examines the ties between the loss of vocational schools, the distribution of drugs in the urban community, and the growth of the prison industry, all while the government seizes property previously owned by growers of plants used for drugs. Legal consultant Warren Houston, an associate with the company Kannaway, discusses how marijuana legalization creates new business opportunities.
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