In a shockingly fast increase, the number of Americans who say they are currently users of pot have nearly doubled in just three years. The two surveys conducted by Gallup show that between 2013 and 2016, the number of adults surveyed who said “yes” to Mary Jane has gone from a paltry 7% to 13%.

It is unclear whether this increase is from a true increase in participation, or just a changing culture which makes survey respondents feel safer admitting their use of the illegal substance, but if this trend continues, we could see a whole lot of Cannabis usage in the next few years.

The stigma against the schedule 1 drug has dropped steeply in recent years due to an increased effort to decriminalize and legalize the use of the plant-based drug. Though the federal government continues to push back, state-by-state legalization is slowly but surely leading to a more “chilled out” America.

States which have legalized marijuana include: Colorado, Washington, Alaska, Oregon and Washington D.C. Because of the location of these legal states, Western Americans are the most likely to admit to marijuana usage.

Might this number drastically increase in the next few years as well? We have reason to believe so as five more states are set to vote on their own legalization laws this election cycle. Three more states intend to vote on medical marijuana legalization, the in-between step for more conservative states.

Whether or not you are a fan of cannabis yourself, it is hard to argue that the legalization of a drug much less harmful than alcohol is bad. By removing the consequences and stigma, we can go a long way in cutting down on the ridiculous “war on drugs,” which puts thousands in prison for low-level crimes each year, ruining lives over the burning of a small green plant.

Sydney Robinson is a political writer for the Ring of Fire Network. She has also appeared in political news videos for Ring of Fire. Sydney has a degree in English Literature from the University of West Florida, and has an active interest in politics, social justice, and environmental issues. She would love to hear from you on Twitter @SydneyMkay or via email at