A Social Issue Reaction
Marijuana should be legalized because the benefits far outweigh the disadvantages. The criminalization and prohibition of marijuana has been unsuccessful. High school seniors report that it’s easy to obtain (Johnston, Lloyd D., Patrick M. O 'Malley, Richard A. Miech, Jerald G. Bachman, and John E. Schulenberg, 2015). Despite research showing that criminal penalties do not decrease the use of marijuana, millions of marijuana related arrests have been made (Hoaken, Peter N. S. and Sherry H. Stewart, 2003). When legalized, the government can more easily control marijuana, including eliminating dangerous additives and risky situations that play a role in consumer acquisition. Marijuana is safer than many legal drugs, in fact, users have seen health benefits. Finally, considering the potential economic impact of legalization, ending the prohibition of marijuana would bring in tax revenue as opposed to costing government money as it does today.
There are many different alternatives to the current prohibition of marijuana. One key issue in the argument presented is that legalization is being promoted. This differs from other approaches such as decriminalization and allowing the use of marijuana for medical purposes. Legalizing and regulating marijuana as opposed to the current laws of prohibition is supported by the author. Of not is that legalization is different from other alternatives to criminalization. Decriminalization would eliminate jail sentences or criminal records for the possession of small amounts of marijuana. Legalizing it for medicinal use would require that users be prescribed marijuana by a doctor and obtain the drug at a pharmacy or other qualified d...
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...billion annually, but if it were taxed with rates comparable to alcohol and tobacco, it has the potential to bring in an estimated $6.2 billion (Miron, 2005).
Laws concerning marijuana vary from state to state, as seen by the number of states who legalize it for recreational use, allow it for medicinal use, or outlaw it completely. This discrepancy shows that state governments cannot reach a single conclusion concerning marijuana laws, despite medical evidence of its benefit and long-term failure to decrease use. Also, from a federal standpoint, legislation that contradicts that of a state is a clear violation of the separation of state and federal powers. The federal government at the very least needs to recognize that the states have jurisdiction over marijuana legislation by not penalizing users who are within the legal boundaries set by the state they are in.
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