Marijuana is a sensitive issue in America today. The drug has been illegal since 1937 and has been used, abused, and sold illegally ever since. It wasn't until California sanctioned medical marijuana in 1996 that efforts to legalize the drug started. Today, sixteen states and Washington D.C acknowledge medical marijuana as useful and necessary treatment for disease and pain. There are currently eighteen states with pending legislation that would legalize marijuana for medical purposes: Illinois is one.
With changing times, values, and beliefs comes changing laws. It is possible that marijuana will be legal in our lifetime. In this article i will show the top five reasons marijuana should be legalized.
5. Prohibition has never worked. Take the alcohol prohibition in the 1920's, there was more crime and violence because the government opened the door for criminals to control a product people wanted. The gangsters and the bootleggers killed over turf and alcohol sales which all could have been avoided if the government controlled the alcohol industry. Because marijuana is illegal, people who choose to use it have to buy it from the black market. If it was legalized and controlled by the government, they can take the control and power from drug cartels and dangerous dealers.
4. If the government controlled marijuana, it would become harder for teens and kids to buy. Just like with alcohol or tobacco there should be an age where you can legally purchase marijuana. By creating special shops where you need to be eighteen or older to enter you can reduce the availability of the drug.
2. Marijuana is non lethal but is treated like it is. Comparing the deadliness of marijuana to tobacco or alcohol is like comparing apples and oranges. Both tobacco and alcohol can have devastating effects on the human body over long term use. Also, alcohol can make a person who normally wouldn't act crazy do something they will may deeply regret.
1. The government could make a lot of money from taxing marijuana and controlling it. Lets face it, marijuana is used by about 25 million people in the U.S. according to Alternet.org. That is a large percentage of the population and will continue to increase. Marijuana could help to pull our nation out of the recession and the ridiculous debt it is in. Also, criminalized marijuana is costly to law enforcement. Law enforcement uses a lot of resources and man hours to investigate, arrest, prosecute, and incarcerate marijuana crimes. These resources can be used to crack down on dangerous drugs, violent offenders, and gangs.
Times, High. "The Top Ten Reasons Marijuana Should Be Legal." Home. 1 Sept. 2007. Web. 12 Apr. 2012. <http://www.alternet.org/drugs/60959/?page=2>.