The topic of marijuana legalization has been a hot topic for many years. To both sides of the argument there are many pluses and minuses. I personally feel that legalization of marijuana would be a great benefit to this country. In the complex society we live in however it is very hard to distinguish the truth from the lies. Personal morals and stereotypes are also a major factor when trying to argue a subject of this nature. On one side there are some positive effects, which have been proven as the result of marijuana. Many legal drugs that you can purchase are more harmful then marijuana. My opinions based on legalization or marijuana is based on a number social and economic factors.
That brings up the questions why not legalize marijuana as medical drug, which is proven to be less dangerous than heavy painkillers and morphine. It is possible to overdose on painkillers and morphine; however, it is a fact that there has never been a proven case of a death because someone had overdosed on marijuana. (B).
It is also a fact that drugs like painkillers and morphine change the amount of dopamine in the brain. This is chemical in your brain that makes you think that you need the drug. Marijuana does not change the amount of dopamine in the brain so it is not classified as a drug that is addictive (A). These facts he go to show that marijuana hypothetically could be legalized without major harm to society.
There have been some instances that marijuana could be used as a medical benefit to patients that have cancer. Marijuana is a great way to reduce nausea because of radiation treatment. It also gives people suffering from AIDS the sensation to want to eat.
Marijuana can also help symptoms from getting worse with patients with glaucoma. (C) There is also evidence that marijuana consumption can help relieve pain from people suffering with tumors and migraines.
Another way marijuana could be a health benefit is to use it on patients who suffer from asthma. The condition that blocks the airways, characterized by periodic attacks of wheezing shortness of breath, chest tightness, and coughing. Marijuana has had significant evidence from study that marijuana reduces the symptoms of this desiese(A). People with asthma are being prescribed “Theopoline” right now for this condition. This drug is responsible for 6,500 hospital deaths and 1,000 cases of brain damage per year, im pretty sure if you asked one of the patients with brain damage if he would prefer the use of marijuana or the legal way he would not hesitate to say marijuana. Marijuana should be used because it is a safe alternative from more dangerous drugs.
Lets just take a look at the facts on legal and illegal drug deaths in America today shall we? There are 340,00 to 425,000 relater deaths from tobacco each year, 150,000 alcohol related deaths, there are 5000 caffeine related deaths a year from stress ulcers and irregular heart beats. Aspirin related deaths are over 1000. There are over 20,000 “Legal” Drug overdose deliberate or accidental. Theopoline as I mentioned earlier has over 6000. And marijuana has the zero cases of death reported(A), its kind of hard to damage yourself when you cant.
The argument that marijuana is going to have a negative effect on society because it is addictive is a wrong argument. “Marijuana is less addictive than caffeine”(A) and the issue of such addiction is nothing compared to the addictions of tobacco. “with a 90% addiction rate” (B). To say that marijuana would be harmful because of its sheer addictiveness nature is a foolish argument. These points give strong support that marijuana is a much less harmful then legal drug such as tobacco or alcohol. Why then is it illegal to drink a dr pepper and not to smoke a joint?
There is also the issue of how much this country spends each year to try to keep marijuana from hitting the streets. This country spends over 15 billions dollars each year on the drug war(B), this amount would be much reduced if marijuana was legal. We wouldn’t have to spend tax money on jailing dealers or court cases linked to marijuana crimes. Not only would we have to spend much less on drug enforcement, we would also be benefiting greatly from taxes on marijuana. If the US was to legalize marijuana it is estimated that there would be a 12 billion dollar a year benefit from sales. Obviously tobacco companies have been taxed for years and we are profiting on those sales, why not legalize marijuana, tax it and benefit instead of loosing hard earned tax money? Not only would raise taxes, it would give hard working Americans jobs in what they are interested in doing. Most likely large corporations such as Marlboro or camel would branch off into this area of business and provide jobs for thousands.
A. National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). (1988a). Annual data 1987: Data from the Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN). Series 1, No. 7. p. 1.
B. National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse. (1972). Marihuana: A signal of misunderstanding. First Report of the National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse, p. 154.
c. Zeese 23
D. .S. Department of Justice. (1989b, February). Felony sentences in state courts, 1986. Bureau of Justice Statistics, p. 3.
E. Evans, R., et al. (1981, December 12). The regulation and taxation of cannabis commerce.