decriminilization of marijuana

1657 Words4 Pages

Every year our government spends more than nineteen billion dollars to eradicate it’s use

in the United States. About seventeen thousand people were arrested last year because of it. We

spend twenty thousand dollars a year per inmate to hold these jailbirds captive. Who are these

dangerous criminals you ask? Stoners.

One argument against the decriminalization of marijuana is why would we want to introduce another intoxicant into our society when alcohol and cigarette smoking is already so damaging? Marijuana is far less harmful to the body than cigarettes. Not to mention while it may be potentially habit forming, it is not addictive. When comparing marijuana to alcohol the differences are obvious. I would much rather be in an argument with guy that has been smoking joints all night than some dude who has spent all night pounding shots of tequila. Alcohol can alter a persons common sense. Despite this, our government trusts us with the burden of drinking responsibly.

Over seventeen thousand arrests are made regarding cannabis a year. Almost ninety percent of these arrests are for simple possession, not trafficking or sale. This is an inappropriate use of valuable law enforcement resources that should be focused on more serious and violent crimes. I don’t know about you, but I would rather have a midnight toker for a neighbor than a midnight stalker. The spending of government money needs to be reevaluated. Our government needs to take a step back and admit they were mistaken to think they could successfully discontinue the use of marijuana. “You cannot have illegal what a significant segment of the population in any society is committed to doing. You simply cannot arrest, prosecute, and punish such a large number of people, particularly in a democracy” (Incardi 285). Ultimately it is not the role of the government to tell it’s adult citizens what risks to take. Bicycles kill ten thousand people a year and yet no one is proposing to make them illegal.

There are benefits of legalizing marijuana, both for the government and society. One of these is that the marijuana market could be government run. The black market would be abolished, saving lives and redirecting the profits from the drug dealers’ Escalade’s new rims to the be...

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...ortant. It is time we allow the many health benefits of marijuana to be utilized by those who need them. It is time we realize there are different cost effective, environment friendly and efficient ways of producing many of our most used products. All we can do is hope our government comes to its senses soon.

Works Cited Page

Baxter, J.W. Growing Industrial Hemp In Ontario. 27 November 2004.

Gray, Judge James P. Why Our Drug Laws Have Failed and What We Can Do About

It. Philadelphia: Temple UP, 2001.

HempNation. 27 November 2004.

Incardi, James A Handbook of Drug Control in the United States. Westport:

Greenwood Press, 1990.

Marijuana: Fact and Fiction. 27 November 2004.

NORML National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. 27 November 2004.

Scannel, Kate. Bush’s Painful Obsession With Medicinal Pot. American Alliance for

Medicinal Cannabis, The Oakland Tribune 27 November 2004.

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