Marijuana, Should It Be Legalized?

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Marijuana, Should It Be Legalized? "Did you know that Marijuana is the most commonly used illicit drug in the United States" (Marijuana, par. 10)? "Marijuana contains more than 400 chemicals, including most of the harmful substances found in tobacco smoke. Smoking one marijuana cigarette deposits about four times more tar into the lungs than a filtered tobacco cigarette" (Marijuana, par. 11). These types of statistics might make one wonder, is marijuana really as harmful of a drug as most would think? Recently there was an article posted on CNN.com about the legalization of marijuana in Denver, Colorado. The article stated, "Residents of the Mile High City have voted to legalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana for adults" (Denver Voters, par. 1). The results of the vote were quite appalling. 56,001 (54 percent) voters voted for the ordinance to pass. 48,632 (46 percent) voted against it (Denver Voters, par. 2). The main term stated under the ordinance was declared that any person over the age of 21 years of age could possess up to one ounce of marijuana (Denver Voters, par. 3). Bruce Mirken of the Washington-based Marijuana Policy Project stated "I hope the approval will launch a national trend toward legalizing a drug whose enforcement causes more problems than it cures" (qtd. in Denver Voters, par. 5). Mason Tvert, a campaign organizer for Safer Alternatives for Enjoyable Recreation (S.A.F.E.R) made the comment, "Legalizing marijuana would reduce consumption of alcohol, which leads to higher rates of car accidents, crime, domestic and street violence" (qtd. in Denver Voters, par. 8). According to the article at the time it was released, all regular drug laws and regulations will apply for Denver, Colorado. My stance on this issue is exceptionally one sided when it comes to street use of this drug. I do not think this substance should be legal in the United States. I believe we have enough problems as a country; why would we want to legalize another? While doing some of my research on this essay I came across an extremely interesting documentation by Leighann Hedman. She researched a lot of positive and negative issues that have to do with marijuana in different situations. One positive and negative effect she weighed was confrontation verses addiction. "We could reduce the black market and the violence associated with the sale of marijuana, as a positive.

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