Marijuana-Pro-Con

ARGUMENTS FOR AND AGAINST THE LEGALIZATION OF MARIJUANA

Heard of the “War on Drugs”?

It refers to governmental programs intended to suppress the consumption of certain recreational drugs. First used by US President, Richard Nixon, in 1972 to describe US’s programs, equivalent terms are now used in many countries.

The War on Drugs utilizes several techniques to achieve its goal of eliminating recreational drug use:

specialized law enforcement agencies, officers and techniques
information campaigns to educate the public on the dangers of recreational drug use
critics often cite these campaigns as a primary reason to end the War on Drugs; they claim the campaigns are frequently misleading or outright lying
streamlined enforcement and evidence-gathering procedures

Marijuana is a drug included in the “war”. Drugs deemed socially, religiously, medically or politically unfit for recreational use are frequently banned. The legal position of marijuana alters throughout the world, reflecting how Governments wage their “war”. From a blanket prohibition suppressing all use, to permitting certain amounts for personal use, the legalization of marijuana fights different fights in different countries. However arguments FOR and AGAINST the legalization of marijuana remain the same.

The Roots of Marijuana Law in the US
The Marijuana Tax Act was introduced in 1937. It required sellers to obtain a license. Blanket prohibition was not the intention. Harry Anslinger (Bureau of Narcotics Commissioner) testified in hearings on the subject that the hemp plant needed to be banned because it had a violent “effect on the degenerate races.” This specifically referred to Mexican immigrants who had entered the country, seeking jobs during the Great Depression.

The law passed quickly and with little debate. The American Medical Association (AMA) protested the law soon after, both on the grounds of actual disagreement with the law and the supporter’s lies on the subject, claiming the AMA had vocalized support when, in fact, the opposite was true.

There was some legal wrangling over the issue after it was passed. The people who were allowed to issue the licenses did not do so, effectively banning the drugs. The judicial system did not accept, at first, that being arrested in possession of drugs was a tax violation because it must have come from an unlicensed source (because there were no licenses), thereby avoiding taxes. Thus, the federal government did have the right to regulate the ingestion of drugs.

 

FOR:

Prohibition must be weighed against the loss of personal freedom.   Countries have a responsibility to respect individual free will and the right of self-determination.

The immorality of marijuana use can only be based on one set of moral beliefs. For example, it is discriminatory to claim that Judeo-Christian abstinence from intoxication is the correct set of moral beliefs.

The War on Drugs serves the immediate interests of politicians. By taking a “moral” stand against recreational drugs, or fighting the evils caused by the illegal drug trade they increase their popularity amongst constituents.

Legal prohibition does not stop consumers from consuming drugs, it does not stop trafficants from producing and selling it. The price of the final product increases to abnormally high values because of the black market status, which together with the powerful effects of drug addiction causes users to commit crimes in order to fund their addiction.

Critics of the War on Drugs advocate the partial or complete decriminalization of illegal drugs, combined with a system of regulation, as happens with alcohol and prescription drugs. By providing legal supplies of currently illegal drugs the price will fall, leading to a collapse in the illegal drug industry, and a reduction in crimes committed by both drug suppliers and users. They also argue that the reduction in the price will lead to little, if any, growth in drug addiction, due to the inelasticity of demand. Some even state that in a strictly regulated market, drug use may fall overall, by removing the marketing activities of the illegal drug industry.

It is not worthwhile for a law to forbid people from willingly exposing their own bodies to harm by using drugs, any more than by overeating or bungee-jumping. Obesity is a national epidemic, killing millions every year, but the government has no right to regulate how much citizens eat.

Drug users exercise free will when they chose to use drugs; a person has the right to give up his or her own freedom. A Government does not have the right to dictate them. No drug eliminates free will. It is possible to quit using any drug. Many banned drugs are significantly less deleterious to free will than legal alcohol or tobacco. Severe physiological addiction has been demonstrated for tobacco (stronger than cocaine), but no strong physiological addiction has been shown for marijuana.

Legalize marijuana and reduce health care costs by reducing the probability of overdoses and accidental ingestion of an unintended drug through standardization of drug purity by state-sponsored production and sale.

There is no clear and obvious third party harm. Such examples are caused by related activities that can be illegal without blanket prohibition. For example, driving while intoxicated is illegal, while drinking alcohol without driving is not.

Harm caused to children by their parents’ excessive drug use is criminal insofar as it constitutes child neglect; drug-specific laws are unneeded.

If drugs were legalized, the companies that manufacture and market them would be sued, such as cigarette companies have been exposed to lawsuits. Legalization of drugs would work to increase liability on producers forcing health standards.

Legalization would allow greater regulation. Cigarettes come with warnings. Alcoholic beverages are clearly marked with the amount of alcohol. Currently legal drugs contain a listing of all active and inactive ingredients. Illegal drugs could be sold legally with ingredients lists, warnings and purity levels clearly marked.

Recreational drug has no clear and obvious harmful effect on anyone besides the user (who chooses to accept those risks). The War on Drugs, on the other hand, places non-users’ friends and loved ones in jail. The War on Drugs does have clear and obvious harmful effects on third parties.

Countries who have experimented with legalization have had positive results.

AGAINST:

A State cannot be involved with the distribution of substances considered immoral by relevant lots of the population. A substance considered unhealthy cannot be produced and distributed with the help of the state, because the goal of the state is to protect citizens’ health and not to expose them to risk.

The easy availability of drugs would create new consumers rather than rescuing current ones.

Drugs are addictive. They rob the user of free will. A drug user cannot make an informed and rational decision to continue using drugs because the use of the drug eliminates that user’s ability to think logically. Nor can they disseminate themselves from drug taking.

Drug use is dangerous to persons besides the user, in the rise of health care costs, violence associated with the use of drugs, neglect of children by drug-addicted parents, and other third party effects.

The use of soft drugs, such as marijuana, leads to the use of hard drugs (the Gateway Theory).

Drug dealers will sell to anyone, including children. Merchants who legally sell alcohol and tobacco are not allowed to sell to children. Many high school students report that it is easier to obtain illegal drugs than alcohol and tobacco.

Legalizing drugs will send a message to children that drug use is acceptable.

Cool Sites:

Legalize Cannabis - Sites for and against marijuana.

Medical Marijuana - Find out the truth about medical marijuana at Medical Marijuana Blog.

Vaporizer – Premium herbal vaporizers at very low prices.

Hydroponic Marijuana – Grow unbelievable buds, which means you need to smoke less for a sensational stoned feeling.

Marijuana Prices – Fascinating site that reveals marijuana prices and which states have the highest rates of marijuana use in the USA.

Marijuana Tea – A great way to consume your greens in a lovely drink.

Bongs and Pipes – The world’s finest, high quality smoking paraphernalia.


 
 
 
 

63 Responses to ARGUMENTS FOR AND AGAINST THE LEGALIZATION OF MARIJUANA

  1. carol braddock says:

    Wow, Chris, way to go!! I just spent the whole semester doing research on medical marijuana. I am on the legalization waltz. I’m from Texas, I’m hoping that in 2015 we can see progress in the works. Did you know that the U.S. government patented cannabinoids? In 1994, we found cannabinoid receptors in our brains. It is patent number 6630507. Ain’t that crazy? How can you patent something you say doesn’t exist? Just in case, tho, they patented cannabinoids for use in the neuro pathways in our brains. How do they tell all the children with epilepsy that certain states have certain rights. That’s B.S. Once California legalized medical marijuana, all 50 states should have followed suit. Maybe with a united front, we could get this classification changed. In all actuality, it is still against the federal law. So Obama’s troops swoop in and start closing dispensaries. This is causing much havoc in the lives of the people that own those stores, and all the way down the line for their employees. Way to go, so much for stimulating the economy. It was a pleasure to chat with someone that clearly did his homework.

  2. Chris says:

    It’s hard to find any argument on the internet that isn’t one-sided. People don’t want to debate, they want to shove what they think down everyone else’s throat. To be honest, there aren’t enough arguments for marijuana here and the arguments against it aren’t even debunked. You just stated them and left it at that. The truth is that hemp, or marijuana is not only a safe drug with very few negative effects in adult users, it is also a drug that has been used for thousands of years in both medicinal and industrial settings. (btw, marijuana kills cancer cells and can be used in other methods that don’t require smoking) The constitution was written on hemp paper just as all paper at the time. It grows easier, faster, and with more yield than wood and cotton. Any other alternative that we use today when it comes to textiles, energy, paper and construction are inferior to hemp. There are literally countless uses of hemp, from dynamite created from the cellulose compound, to clean renewable energy that could make the US energy independent from the rest of the world. People like George Washington saw the extremely helpful nature of this plant, declaring that it should be sowed “everywhere.” That was hundreds of years ago. We have only discovered more and more uses of hemp as time rolls on. People like Henry Ford can be credited for such discoveries as a composite plastic made with hemp that is both 10 times stronger than steel and only weighing 2/3 as much. He even used it as bio fuel in his original Model T prototype AKA the hemp car. Medicinal uses are also being found as time passes, with many breakthroughs in this field showing that medical marijuana is more effective than pharmaceuticals in patients with PTSD, epilepsy and seizures, glaucoma, chronic headaches, eating disorders, and cancer. The list can go on all day if you want it to. Not only has it been found to be more effective, it also has side effects that pale in comparison to pharmaceuticals that treat the same illnesses. Our president has said that marijuana is no more harmful than alcohol, yet leaves it on the Schedule 1 list, declaring it more powerful than cocaine and meth, which are both widely-known as much harder drugs than marijuana. It also says that there is no accepted medical benefit and that the drugs in Schedule 1 have great potential for physical dependence. Marijuana withdrawals are are as petty as caffeine and are much rarer. This man says he supports it, yet medical marijuana dispensaries are being raided on his watch, forcing these patients to buy their medicine on the street with no assurance that they are getting what they pay for. This, in turn, only gives the cartels more power. When people argue and say that marijuana is a “gateway” drug, they are admitting that there are so few truthful arguments against marijuana, that they need to bring in other drugs that are easier to argue about, saying “This gets you higher though! So that means that after awhile you’ll get bored and want some variety!” In truth though, the high people get from marijuana is not even similar to what other drugs offer. Honestly you can’t even compare them besides the negative side effects that come with. The gateway drug theory is the last resort in the war on freedom and has been shown from multiple polls and statistics to be false. To make marijuana legal does not condone that teenagers use it. Just with alcohol, they would have to be 21 to use it legally. Even if kids started smoking pot instead of drinking alcohol regardless of this fact, they would be better off. In order to overdose on pot, you would have to smoke, according to theory, 1,500 pounds in 15 minutes. It is not linked to violent behavior like alcohol and it is less dangerous when idiots decide to drive stoned than intoxicated, by at least 500%. Even if the person does get in a wreck, it’s extremely unlikely they were going 120 mph like what a drunk driver might be going. Alcohol has become highly welcomed in American society through countless ad campaigns which group alcohol with your favorite sport. This is not the example we should give our kids, not at all. If we want them to know how dangerous alcohol is, we need to be less liberal with these commercials making beer look like the biggest joyride of your life. We also need to realize that 750,000 people are incarcerated every year in the US for marijuana related crimes, 82% of which for simple possession. We have the highest incarceration rate in the world because of prohibition, which not only shows how lacking we are on our core value of “freedom” but also speaks volumes when you compare people who have smoked and gotten caught and people who have not. If our president got caught for smoking marijuana in college, his life would not even resemble what it is now. He would have been convicted of a crime that can have longer sentences than rape and murder, even though it is a victim less crime. He would be labeled an ex-con for the rest of his life, being refused basic American freedoms like the right to vote to this day. He would not even be able to get a minimum wage job because he would be seen as a blight on society. That’s our president. A war on drugs is a war on the people. Stop telling us how to live our lives. Empty the prisons and focus on things that matter. Make our society safer and stop making our protectors our enemies. Black people make up 13% of society and 14% of drug users, yet 56% of drug related arrests are on black people, even though they use drugs like marijuana about as much as white and Hispanic people. It is blatant profiling sanctioned by law enforcement.

  3. Tricia says:

    I just want to know where the persons constitutional rights are of those who are highly allergic to the smoke, the plant, and proteins. People are there are no health problems, I believe this is a one sided argument. I have on several occasions been rushed to ER just because the idiot next to me rolled down his window at a stop light and the smoke bellowed into my car. It closes my airways and stops my heart. If this is legalized and allowed in public places I would not have anywhere to live. And I do not think that it would be freedom to have to lock my self up just so others can get high.

    • Yoshi says:

      Tricia says:
      “I have on several occasions been rushed to ER just because the idiot next to me rolled down his window at a stop light and the smoke bellowed into my car. It closes my airways and stops my heart.”
      ==
      Smoke and (before and during) drive won’t be legalized, just like the current law prohibits drink and drive, and intoxicated in anyway.

    • Nexus says:

      This is not a mater of constitutional rights. There are many people that I know who are allergic to tobacco smoke and they have this same problem. The only difference is that tobacco is already legal and my friends avoid all contact with people who smoke. There are ways to get around and ways to protect yourself in high density areas where people do smoke. If it is legalized and it has a huge chance that it will then you will either have to move somewhere where they are more conservative or find a way to deal with society as it evolves.

  4. Suzieq says:

    My fellow Americans let’s get our act together and set our priorities right! Legalizing marijuana is a bad idea. It negatively affects our work force productivity, increases addiction and the spiraling, out of control problems that causes, and who knows the long term health affects more of this use will cause? What young person wants to risk having a possible early lung disease like the onset of bullous emphysema?? Health care costs will rise and everyone will be up in arms about it! We’ve already seen this with cigarette and alcohol’s affect on the health of Americans, why add fuel to the fire?

    • Yoshi says:

      Suzieq says:
      “It negatively affects our work force productivity, increases addiction and the spiraling, out of control problems that causes, and who knows the long term health affects more of this use will cause?”
      ==
      Same as alcohol, and the negative effect of alcohol to one’s health is even greater.
      Have you seen any of your co-worker shown up at work drunk? If he or she does it, they’ll get fired.
      Most people don’t do it because of the consequences.
      How will the marijuana make any difference?

  5. Jay says:

    Marijuana should be legalized. These cons mentioned are not even helping to support the argument to not legalize marijuana. Alcohol and tobacco are substantially more addictive than marijuana. Nicotine is just as addictive (if not more) than heroin! Yet, nicotine and alcohol products can be bought in any gas station and convenient store in the U.S.! No one has died from smoking too much weed. It’s impossible, you would have to smoke an obscene amount and by then you would probably pass out. It’s all about your decision making. You choose to smoke, be inquisitive about the world, and make wise decisions regarding your safety then you do so. But if you engage in risky behavior that’s your fault and not the drug. Besides, drivers cannot blame the alcohol for getting charged with a DUI; they blame themselves for making a bad decision. It’s your choice to get into a car high or drunk. Alcohol and tobacco are a lot worse for you than weed and the statistics prove this; the government just needs to legalize marijuana.

    Obama even admitted that marijuana was a lot less harmful than alcohol! The government must get past its insecurities about pot.

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