Weed. Pot. Dope. Cannibis. Grass. Marijuana. For years there has been a negative stigma attached to this plant, but that’s exactly what it is, a plant, something that grows in the ground, and it is not inherantly evil like some people believe. It is the use or misuse of it that is good or bad, not the plant itself. I think that it is time we look past all that we have been told about the dangers of marijuana and see that it actually has legitimate medical uses.
And I believe that if it was something developed by scientists instead of a Schedule 1 drug, it would already be legal for medical use. The legalization of marijuana has been a heated debate in the news over the past few years with valid arguments on both sides of the issue, but I feel as if the advantages greatly outweigh the disadvantages. Legalizing marijuana is not only economical but beneficial health wise to the population of well, any country. Look how many western nations have already caught on to that idea (Amsterdam for example), and are profiting from it.
For a second, let’s give up all the notions we’ve been fed about marijuana through several media outlets about the fact that it is a ‘drug’ and the idea that drugs are bad (through our conditioning). Did you ever think about the fact that cigarettes are just as or even more harmful to your health and yet they’re still legal? What makes marijuana so bad that it can’t be legalized? It’s definitely not the idea that marijuana is bad for your health because if it was bad for your health, it wouldn’t be prescribed for medical purposes.
In fact, medical research has proven several benefits of marijuana use including treatment for glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, and the obvious fact that it is both anti-emetic (prevents nausea) and used for pain relief. For those concerned about the health effects due to smoking marijuana, remember, smoking is not the only way to enjoy marijuana benefits, you can also eat it or even vaporize it. In fact, many economists are trying to push the legalization of marijuana because they believe it will help bring up the drowning economy of the United States.
Most people may not realize it, but the United States spends billions of tax payers dollars fighting the so called “drug war” when there are so many more important issues at hand. I mean, let the people who want to smoke marijuana smoke marijuana peacefully, how is it bothering you? If the fact that you are not earning any tax dollars off illegal sales is bothersome, then just legalize it and tax it. Since 0. 5 grams of marijuana is sold on the streets for about $8. 60 and its production price is only $1. 0 – that means that the legal selling price could be much lower than the street selling price, giving people incentive to purchase legally. Taxing marijuana and saving money on the drug war could actually profit the US economy greatly. So if there are so many advantages to legalizing marijuana, why doesn’t the government follow through with it? Why does it not have enough support to push it through? It should be noted that whether you legalize marijuana or not, people will continue to utilize it illegally, costing the governments billions of dollars in attempting to fight it.
There are not many disadvantages to legalizing marijuana, and minimal health effects as you cannot overdose on the drug. The only possible negative health effect is the long term effect on the hippocampus which retains memory in the brain. Research has shown that excessive marijuana smoking can cause damage to the brain, but again that comes down to freedom. People are aware that cigarettes cause cancer and have many negative effects but continue to smoke it – the only requirement being health hazards being posted on the packs (in Canada only).
Why couldn’t the same precautions be provided whilst legalizing marijuana and then have the people make their own decisions – give the people the choice to live their own lives. “Legalizing marijuana will raise too many health hazards which will raise the health care costs” – a totally untrue statement. People smoke cigarettes which cause more health damage and thus increase the need for medical attention, raising medical costs, whereas marijuana wouldn’t drastically increase health care costs (with the new health care bill coming up), possibly decrease health care costs and even help people quit smoking.
Besides, there are plenty of healthy ways to smoke marijuana. Ultimately, the reason the government does not want to legalize marijuana is because it would be impossible to prevent illegal sales even if it was legalized. I doubt they’re worried about the health concerns (minimal) that follow with the usage of marijuana – so most of their concern lies with how to have high prices whilst taxing it and prevent illegal sales.
Medical marijuana currently sells for equal to or more than street prices, and if it were legalized, why would people purchase it for the same as street price and pay tax on it rather than purchase it illegally tax free. I believe that is the greatest reason that the government is hesitant in legalizing marijuana, otherwise, I believe, it would have been pushed forward long ago. Such a petty concern however, should not prevent the government from pursuing an action that will ultimately benefit the nation, because people will continue to use marijuana for leisure purposes, whether it be legally or illegally.