The Debate Over The Legalization of Marijuana

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In economics, a mixed market economy is one in which the actions of private businesses are affected by public actions and decisions. In the United States, there are governmental actions that decided just how much intervention will be used on a business. This is a redundant topic, as the two political parties, Republican and Democrat, debate the issue frequently. The idea of “laissez-faire” is a free market economy where businesses have the right to do whatever they want. Republicans tend to lean towards this ideal, while Democrats call for more governmental intervention on businesses. When deciding just how much control will be used, one must look at all the benefits and costs. Not only must economic benefits be asserted, but moral and social benefits and costs must be taken into consideration. A topic that many people have been contemplating is the legalization of marijuana. Many people believe that the legalization of marijuana with a high tax is sensible because it would place the demand curve in the same place as if it were criminalized, except with a tax the government would make money from the tax revenue. However, the issue of morality and then the costs and benefits to society must be taken into consideration to decide whether it should be legalized or not. Microeconomics always poses the questions of “What good to produce,” “How to Produce this good,” and “For whom should this good be produced?” In this case, the “What” that gets produced is marijuana in a private market. “How” this would be produced depends on the ideal of the economy. In a laissez-faire economy, the market would determine how much and if machines would be used to grow and tend marijuana. People would have the freedom to purchase marijuana, and no one would be forced into buying it if they had moral believes against it. The problem that arises in this situation is the idea of public safety and morality against freedom of businesses. Many people would feel unsafe because marijuana is known as a “gateway” drug, leading people into a life of addiction to more serious drugs. In addition, many believe that because marijuana is in fact a drug it is morally unjust to use it. On the other hand, some people believe that business should have freedom to a “free market” and should ultimately be able to sell whatever they please. In addition, the legalization of marijuana could be be... ... middle of paper ... ...ame opportunity to do as they please. After looking at all the costs and benefits to each option of the government, I believe that the best choice would be in the legalization of marijuana with the implementation of a high tax. This idea seems like the most logical because although the moral issue comes into play, if the tax is high enough than the quantity demanded would be the same as it is with the prohibition. The benefit of tax revenue is huge as well, and the idea would be similar to that of alcohol and cigarettes. Although public safety would be an issue, the benefits of the tax revenue and the governments ability to moderate seems to outweigh it. This seems to be a medium between the two extremes, prohibition and legalization. Republicans and Democrats debate daily on the role of government in business. Certain social and economic freedoms must be taken into consideration, while looking out for the good of the country. Therefore, by weighing the costs and benefits of the options, the government can get an idea of what would help the country the most. In the case of the legalization of marijuana, I feel that finding the compromise benefits society the greatest.
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