An article released by the Benjamin Center for Public Policy Initiatives at SUNY New Paltz makes the argument that marijuana is not, in fact, a gateway to harder drug use.

The brief, assembled by a team of local researchers, states that the theory marijuana leads to other drugs is is for political purposes. The report goes on to say that the stigma associated with the drug has done more damage than good. Marijuana remains a Schedule 1 drug along with cocaine, heroin and others.

Over the last decade, support for both medical and recreational marijuana has sky rocketed. In addition to the 28 states that allow medical, eight states (and Washington D.C.) now allow recreational pot to some degree. The recreational marijuana market is expected to see more than 20 billion in sales annually by 2021 according to Business Insider.

Click here if you'd like to read the full report on 'The Marijuana Gateway Fallacy'.

The Benjamin Center was established 10 years ago at SUNY New Paltz and conducts research on topics meant to help communities and organizations across the region.

So what do you think? Is marijuana a gateway drug or not, or is it just madness?