04 November 2003Legalization of MarijuanaThe legalization of marijuana is a controversial issue that has beenfought for and against for several decades. Marijuana is defined as apreparation made from the dried flower clusters and leaves of the cannabisplant, which is usually smoked or eaten to induce euphoria and to heal andsoothe (dictionary. com). In the 1930s, the American media spread numerousfalse stories that marijuana was an extremely dangerous drug and thereforemarijuana and hemp were effectively banned in 1938.
It is apparent thatthe ban on marijuana in the United States is unnecessary due to the factthat the crime would be reduced, its results are proved to be better thanthose of prescribed drugs and taxes on other products would be reduced. As we know there are many people in the world that sell and/or growmarijuana. Under the Drug Act this is illegal and fines and even prisontime can occur. Why is it everyday professional athletes and other famouspeople in the media get away with murder but if anyone else has any amountof marijuana in their possession they get jail time? If marijuana waslegalized it would decrease the crime rate and would eliminate manyproblems with adolescents. “Alcohol, which is advertised on television and sold in supermarkets,isresponsible for nearly 100,000 deaths annually, including thosecaused bydrunk drivers.
But the use of all illegal drugs combined -cocaine, heroin, marijuana, angel dust, LSD, et cetera – accountedfor only 3,403 deaths in1987 which is only 1 percent of those causedby alcohol. According to theNational Institute of Drug Abuse,however, there are no deaths that can beunequivocally attributed tomarijuana use. And unlike alcohol use, afrequent factor like childabuse, marijuana does not predispose its users to violence” (War on Drugs25). This quote proves that the use of marijuana doesn’t directly cause deaths. Death may be caused while under the influence of marijuana however, it isalso under the influence of another drug or alcohol. Today all marijuana is purchased illegally and the government has nocontrol over the way it is used.
If it were legalized the government couldcontrol the selling and growing of it, which in turn would rid of many ofthe problems we hear about on the news or read in the newspaper. Not onlywould it abolish the need for dealers, but it would also eliminate the needfor concealment due to the fact that it would no longer be against the lawto purchase it. With the government having control over the selling ofweed it would also control who purchases marijuana, similar to thepurchasing of tobacco. Parents could worry less about their teenagerspurchasing marijuana under age as well as preventing teenagers from gettinginvolved with dealers. Unlike cigarettes, alcohol, cocaine, and heroin,marijuana is not addictive (War on Drugs 25).
Like cigarettes one isunable to purchase them until one is eighteen years of age; however, manyteenagers still find ways of getting them on their own. This is the samefor marijuana. If a teenager wants to purchase marijuana then they willfind ways to get. People would no longer be arrested for carryingmarijuana on them; therefore, decreasing the amount of drug trafficking inCanada. By eliminating the crime caused by marijuana selling and smoking,it could also decrease the amount of other crimes that are associated withthe drug culture. With the government’s control over the marijuana theycould also put taxes on each bag.
We as tax payers are always looking for other ways to decrease theamount of taxes that we have to pay. This year alone the government hasincreased the price of tobacco as well as the amount of hydroelectricity wepay for our houses. If we look at how much money was consumed last yearform the selling of illegal marijuana we can see that it would raise ourcountry’s profits significantly. Each year almost 7 billion dollars ismade through the exporting of marijuana.
Since the government would becontrolling the buying and selling of it, it could charge a hefty amount intaxes. For the pot-smoker that wouldn’t necessarily be for the best, butfor the other tax payers the tax on other products would reducesignificantly. The taxes on such items like other prescribed and over- the-counter drugs would be reduced. Medical uses of marijuana for the relief of nausea in cancer and AIDSpatients and the stimulation of appetite have been proven to have betteraffects than those of prescribed and over-the-counter drugs.
The oil andfibers of the cannabis plant have many uses such as making rope, cloth,paper, and fuel. Aloe Vera is defined as “the mucilaginous juice or gelobtained from the leaves of this plant, widely used in cosmetic andpharmaceutical preparations for its soothing and healing properties”(dictionary. com). Note that both Marijuana and Aloe Vera are used formedicinal use yet aloe vera is legal and marijuana isn’t. Why is it?Many people oppose the legalization of marijuana as they consider ita drug, one that will open the doors to other harsher more serious drugs.
Although this may be true only a person that abuses drugs will allowthemselves to fall into a hole. Many people don’t look at marijuana as aplant that has many healing powers but as a drug that causes damage. Legalization advocates deny that the amount of drug use would be affected. People believe that drug use would soar because of the availability. Mybest friend, Alana, and I have been smoking pot for several years now. Yet, she moved on to more drugs, she tried new things.
She tried coke. Iwas very displeased with her choice but I stated my feelings to her abouther using such a drug. I am not sure whether she is addicted to it but sheknows that I don’t like her doing it and knows that I am not going tolecture her on her using it anymore. For me, I am just fine with smokingmarijuana, for her, on the other hand, she isn’t satisfied. It is a common misconception that marijuana is a gateway drug andleads to other more harsher drugs. I know from personal experiences thatit doesn’t necessarily lead to more harsh drugs.
Like I have mentionedpreviously, I have been smoking pot for a few years now and have had nodesire whatsoever to try any other drug. As far as it being more readilyavailable, yes it is; however, people would smoke more pot but it doesn’tnecessarily mean more people are going to smoke pot. It is apparent that the ban on marijuana in the United States isunnecessary due to the fact that the crime would be reduced, its resultsare proved to be better than those of prescribed drugs and taxes on otherproducts would be reduced. The government and the rest of society haven’tlooked at the benefits that marijuana has. Ignorant people only look at itas a dangerous drug.
Medically, marijuana improves those who use it. Asfar as the government selling it, the crime rate would reduce and so wouldtaxes. Marijuana’s ban in the United States is strictly unnecessary. Works CitedLexico Publishing Group, LLC.
Dictionary. com. 2003. 21 Oct.
2003. Jones, David. War on Drugs; Opposing Viewpoints. San Diego: GreenhavenPress, Inc, 1990.