Marijuana Argumentative Essay Against Legalization of Weed
Another reason why the crime rate dropped is because once it became regulated in Colorado the only place to legally use the drug is at home. Once a person purchases an ounce they are responsible to go home and use it there. After the person uses it they would be to dysfunctional to think or act out any crime. Moreover, the number of people convicted for possession of marijuana would decrease.
This means that the current laws are strained and unjust. The numbers of arrests for marijuana are higher as compared to those of violent crimes.
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In addition, the punishment does not fit the crime. For example, if a person gets arrested for possession of cannabis they will either be sent to jail or federal prison. Forced to share the same cell with someone who possibly killed their entire family. While this the case, some may argue that the legalization of cannabis will produce more crimes.
The main concern with legalizing an illegal drug revolves around minors. Many regulations need to be in effect in order to prevent such disasters. Marijuana is used typically in private, therefore it would be difficult to monitor whether the legal consumer will keep the product away from children. Equally important, because of the availability of the drug it is possible for minors to get the drug from somewhere other than a dispensary.
Allowing the drug would make it even more easily available then it was before. In addition, because of the way marijuana can be consumed instead of smoked is an even greater risk to younger children. A child will not know the difference between a brownie filled with chocolate chips compared to one containing cannabis. Also taking into consideration the addictive properties of this drug it is irresponsible to legalize something that children as young as 12 years old are using and abusing.
At an age that young they would become non-functioning adults as they grow older.
The use of marijuana for medical purposes is supported by many experts.
S…a regulated system, licensed merchants have an incentive to check IDs and avoid selling to minors. The reason why the rate of use by both parties are low is because it is based on individual freedoms. Just because something became legal does not mean that every person is going to jump on the bandwagon and start using the drug. Even a minor has the decision to partake in the consumption of the drug or not, it is solely up to their judgment. They have the choice to either wait until they are 21 to legally start using the drug or refer to the black market.
As I stated before, a person who wants marijuana will stop at nothing to obtain it. No matter if something is legal or not a minor will get their hands on it. In addition the handling of the drug is based on the consumer. If the consumer handles it wrong and accidentally serves a child a brownie with cannabis in it that is their fault. The drug can not be to blame because it is common knowledge that a product of this magnitude regardless of how it is consumed, either smoked or eaten should be kept away from children.
Also it would be easier to detect such drug dealers lurking in schools. In conclusion, legalizing marijuana across the United States is an important step. It would help raise the economy and fund necessary programs. Also, because prohibition has failed previously with alcohol it is absurd to think that with marijuana the outcome would be any different. Lastly, decriminalizing the drug would significantly reduce the number of inmates in federal prison because of marijuana. Recreational marijuana is the safest drug on the market because it is impossible to overdose, therefore no deaths have come from it.
Works cited Goltz, Nachshon, and Ekaterina Bogdanov. Academic Search Premier. Academic Writing. Create account or Sign in. They include: memory loss, distorted perception, trouble with thinking and problem solving, loss of motor skills, decrease in muscle strength, increased heart rate, and anxiety.
Marijuana impacts young people's mental development, their ability to concentrate in school, and their motivation and initiative to reach goals. And marijuana affects people of all ages: Harvard University researchers report that the risk of a heart attack is five times higher than usual in the hour after smoking marijuana. Many of the deaths from using cannabis, other than from car accidents while intoxicated or violence and aggression,   are more likely to figure in the longer term, just as with tobacco, where both nicotine overdose and cannabis overdose are extremely rare or nonexistent.
While ecstasy may have lower rates of immediate mortality than some other illicits, there is a growing science on the already recognized considerable health harms of ecstasy. Drug Free Australia claims arguments that increased health harms of illicit drugs are the result of lack of government regulation of their purity and strength are not well supported by evidence. In Australia, which has had the highest opioid mortality per capita in the OECD,  studies found that "overdose fatality is not a simple function of heroin dose or purity.
There is no evidence of toxicity from contaminants of street heroin in Australia. Drug Free Australia argues "Regarding the freedom of choice of those addicted to a drug, it is important to recognize that addiction is defined as compulsive by its very nature and that addictions curb individual freedom. Where it is argued that all disabilities are a burden on society it must be recognized that most disabilities are not the result of a choice, whereas the decision to recreationally use illicit drugs is most commonly free, and with the knowledge that they may lead to an abundance of addictions.
There is evidence that many illicit drugs pose comparatively fewer health dangers than certain legal drugs. According to a World Health Organisation report: "As cannabis is an illegal drug its cultivation, harvesting and distribution are not subject to quality control mechanisms to ensure the reliability and safety of the product used by consumers.
It is well recognised in developing countries, such as Kenya, that illicit alcohol production can result in the contamination with toxic by-products or adulterants that can kill or seriously affect the health of users. The same may be true of illicit drugs such as opiates, cocaine and amphetamine in developed societies.
The government cannot enforce quality control on products sold and manufactured illegally.
The illegality of injectable drugs leads to a scarcity of needles which causes an increase in HIV infections. The money spent on both increased health costs due to HIV infections and drug prohibition itself causes a drain upon society. Studies on the effects of prescribing heroin to addicts as practiced in many European countries have shown better rates of success than any other available treatment in terms of assisting long-term users establish stable, crime-free lives. Many patients were able to find employment, some even started a family after years of homelessness and delinquency.
The illegality of many recreational drugs may be dissuading research into new, more effective and perhaps safer recreational drugs. For example, it has been proposed that a drug with many of the same desired effects as alcohol could be created with fewer adverse health effects. The risk of punishment when producing, selling, or using a drug that is prohibited or highly regulated leads to an added cost for anyone who still chooses to engage in illicit trade on a black market.
Anyone doing business producing or trading a prohibited substance will incur the same risk of being caught regardless of how strong potent the substance. Thus, dealers and producers will always prefer to transport and trade drugs that are as potent as possible. It is more profitable with the same risk. Moreover, because of this economic incentive, over time the potency of illegal drugs will increase with new methods of production. The potency effect was clearly demonstrated during alcohol prohibition in the US with the advent of highly distilled liquors like moonshine.
It is also clearly evident in marijuana production today with the use of hydroponic growing methods. The potency effect is particularly dangerous from a health perspective because lower doses can have greater effects than the user expects which can be harmful or fatal. And very often highly concentrated drugs will be "cut" with unknown substances in order to dilute their effects. The United States Drug Enforcement Administration DEA has suggested that illegal drugs are "far more deadly than alcohol", arguing that "although alcohol is used by seven times as many people as drugs, the number of deaths induced by those substances is not far apart", quoting figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC , claiming "during , there were 15, drug-induced deaths; only slightly less than the 18, alcohol-induced deaths.
The DEA's use of such figures is questionable however. An article in the Journal of the American Medical Association gave the number deaths caused by alcohol in year as 85, — over four and a half times greater than the DEA's preferred figure. An analysis of drug-induced deaths for the year period — found the vast majority attributable to accidental overdose, and suicide by drug taking, which together account for about 76 percent of all such deaths. Claims that cannabis is far more powerful than it used to be are also dubious, with "scare figures" skewed by comparing the weakest cannabis from the past with the strongest of today.
A document published for the non-profit advocacy organization Europe Against Drugs EURAD argues that "one cannot vote for a medicine" and that a scientific approval basis is essential. It says that EU rules set out strict criteria for the acceptance of a drug for medical use:. All active ingredients have to be identified and their chemistry determined. These tests have to be validated and reproduced if necessary in an official laboratory. Animal testing will include information on fertility, embryo toxicity, immuno-toxicity, mutagenic and carcinogenic potential.
Risks to humans, especially pregnant women and lactating mothers, will be evaluated. Adequate safety and efficacy trials must be carried out. They must state the method of administration and report on the results from different groups, i. Adverse drug reactions ADR have to be stated and include any effects on driving or operating machinery.
According to Janet D. Lapey, M. This is especially true of addictive, mind-altering drugs like marijuana. A marijuana withdrawal syndrome occurs, consisting of anxiety, depression, sleep and appetite disturbances, irritability, tremors, diaphoresis, nausea, muscle convulsions, and restlessness. Often, persons using marijuana erroneously believe that the drug is helping them combat these symptoms without realizing that actually marijuana is the cause of these effects.
Therefore, when a patient anecdotally reports a drug to have medicinal value, this must be followed by objective scientific studies. There is a growing misconception that some illegal drugs can be taken safely. For example, savvy drug dealers have learned how to market drugs like Ecstasy to youth. Some in the Legalization Lobby even claim such drugs have medical value, despite the lack of conclusive scientific evidence.
Most of the psychoactive drugs now prohibited in modern societies have had medical uses in history. In natural plant drugs like opium, coca, cannabis, mescaline, and psilocybin, the medical history usually dates back thousands of years and through a variety of cultures. Psychedelics such as LSD and psilocybin the main ingredient in most hallucinogenic mushrooms are the subject of renewed research interest because of their therapeutic potential.
They could ease a variety of difficult-to-treat mental illnesses, such as chronic depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and alcohol dependency. Under prohibition, millions of people find it very difficult to obtain controlled medications, particularly opiate pain-relievers. The United Nations Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs requires that opiates be distributed only by medical prescription, but this is impractical in many areas.
According to the Transnational Institute , June . Ironically, the current drug control regulations hamper access to controlled opiate medications for therapeutic use. Many patients are unable to access morphine, methadone or an equivalent opioid. Global medical morphine consumption would rise five times if countries would make morphine available at the level of the calculated need, according to a recent WHO estimate. According to the New York Times, September . Under Sierra Leone law, morphine may be handled only by a pharmacist or doctor, explained Gabriel Madiye, the hospice's founder.
But in all Sierra Leone there are only about doctors — one for every 54, people, compared with one for every in the United States The DEA argues that "compared to the social costs of drug abuse and addiction—whether in taxpayer dollars or in pain and suffering—government spending on drug control is minimal. The economic argument for drug legalization says: legalize drugs, and generate tax income.
This argument is gaining favour, as national administrations seek new sources of revenue during the current economic crisis. This legalize and tax argument is un-ethical and uneconomical. It proposes a perverse tax, generation upon generation, on marginalized cohorts lost to addiction to stimulate economic recovery. Are the partisans of this cause also in favour of legalizing and taxing other seemingly intractable crimes like human trafficking?
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Modern-day slaves and there are millions of them would surely generate good tax revenue to rescue failed banks. The economic argument is also based on poor fiscal logic: any reduction in the cost of drug control due to lower law enforcement expenditure will be offset by much higher expenditure on public health due to the surge of drug consumption. The moral of the story: don't make wicked transactions. Gil Kerlikowske , current director of the US ONDCP , argues that legalizing drugs, then regulating and taxing their sale, would not be effective fiscally.
The tax revenue collected from alcohol pales in comparison to the costs associated with it. Opposition to the legalization of hemp, which uses plants of the cannabis genus for commercial purposes, centres on the fact that those wanting to legalize the use of cannabis for recreational and medical purposes themselves present it as their Trojan horse for that very purpose:. Alex Shum, importers of hemp fabric, "feel that the way to legalize marijuana is to sell marijuana legally.
So, they are going to produce every conceivable thing out of hemp. He also said that it could become a predatory body like the lobbying arms of the tobacco and alcohol industries. Kleiman said: "The fact that the National Cannabis Industry Association has hired itself a K Street suit [lobbyist] is not a good sign.
The war on drugs is extremely costly to such societies that outlaw drugs in terms of taxpayer money, lives, productivity, the inability of law enforcement to pursue mala in se crimes, and social inequality. Some proponents  of decriminalization say that the financial and social costs of drug law enforcement far exceed the damages that the drugs themselves cause. For instance, in , close to 60, prisoners 3. In , the total jail and prison population was ,, about one-quarter the size it is today.
Mass arrests of local growers of marijuana, for example, not only increase the price of local drugs, but lessens competition. Only major retailers that can handle massive shipments, have their own small fleet of aircraft, troops to defend the caravans and other sophisticated methods of eluding the police such as lawyers , can survive by this regulation of the free market by the government. See, if you look at the drug war from a purely economic point of view, the role of the government is to protect the drug cartel. That's literally true. The huge profits to be made from cocaine and other South American-grown drugs are largely because they are illegal in the wealthy neighbouring nation.
This drives people in the relatively poor countries of Colombia , Peru , Bolivia and Brazil to break their own laws in organising the cultivation, preparation and trafficking of cocaine to the States.
What is Marijuana?
This has allowed criminal, paramilitary and guerrilla groups to reap huge profits, exacerbating already serious law-and-order and political problems. Within Bolivia, the political rise of current president Evo Morales is directly related to his grassroots movement against US-sponsored coca-eradication and criminalization policies. However, coca has been cultivated for centuries in the Andes.
In some regions, farmers' coca and other crops are frequently destroyed by U. Agricultural producers in these countries are pushed further to grow coca for the cocaine trade by the dumping of subsidised farming products fruit, vegetables, grain etc. The net effect can be a depression of prices for all crops, which can both make the farmer's livelihood more precarious, and make the cocaine producers' coca supplies cheaper.
Furthermore, the sale of the illegal drugs produces an influx of dollars that is outside the formal economy, and puts pressure on the currency exchange keeping the dollar low and making the export of legal products more difficult. The War on Drugs has resulted in the outlawing of the entire hemp industry in the United States. Without even realizing the plant had been outlawed several months prior, Popular Mechanics magazine published an article in entitled The New Billion-Dollar Crop anticipating the explosion of the hemp industry with the invention of machines to help process it.
Recently, governmental refusal to take advantage of taxing hemp has been a point of criticism. Hemp has a large list of potential industrial uses including textiles , paper , rope , fuel , construction materials, and biocomposites for use in cars for example. Hemp has some drawbacks, however, one being that the long fibers in hemp are only a part of the outer bast, and this has contributed to hemp having only modest commercial success in countries for example in Canada where it is legal to harvest hemp.
The seed of the hemp plant is highly nutritious. Rare for a plant, it contains all essential amino acids. Rare for any food, it is a good source of alpha-linolenic acid , an omega 3 fatty acid which is deficient in most diets. While concerns are sometimes expressed that the "war on drugs" can never be won, there is a failure to recognize that other justifiably costly policing wars such as "blitzes" on speeding can likewise never be won.
Such blitzes reduce and contain speeding, as with policing of illicit drug use. Failure to police speeding drivers simply allows inordinate harm to be inflicted on other individuals. Speeding is not legalized simply because it can never be eradicated. There is an argument that much crime and terrorism is drug related or drug funded and that prohibition should reduce this. Former US president George W.
Crime, violence and drug use go hand in hand. Six times as many homicides are committed by people under the influence of drugs, as by those who are looking for money to buy drugs. Most drug crimes aren't committed by people trying to pay for drugs; they're committed by people on drugs. The U. ADAM is a network of 34 research sites in select U.
Cocaine-related paranoia is an example. If drug use increases with legalization, so will such forms of related violent crime as assaults, drugged driving, child abuse, and domestic violence. That higher prices make the trade lucrative for criminals is recognized but countered by the argument that capitulating to illicit drug use on these grounds makes no more sense than capitulating to those who continue to traffic in human lives, a more expensive business because of its illegality and therefore more lucrative for the criminal, but necessary for the rights of vulnerable citizens.
The Office of National Drug Control Policy says that the idea that our nation's prisons are overflowing with otherwise law-abiding people convicted for nothing more than simple possession of marijuana is a myth, "an illusion conjured and aggressively perpetuated by drug advocacy groups seeking to relax or abolish America's marijuana laws. Some were convicted for drug trafficking, some for marijuana possession along with one or more other offenses.
And many of those serving time for marijuana pleaded down to possession in order to avoid prosecution on much more serious charges. In the US, just 1. An even smaller fraction of state prisoners were first time offenders 0. The numbers on the US federal prisons are similar. In , the overwhelming majority of offenders sentenced for marijuana crimes were convicted for trafficking and only 63 served time for simple possession.
The police have been able to solve other crimes, e. Some even provide information about people who are selling drugs, and the police have seized large amounts of drugs as a result of information from people brought in for a urine test. Many interrogations of drug abusers have also resulted in search warrants and the recovery of stolen property. The argument that drug addicts of certain drugs are forced into crime by prohibition should first and foremost highlight the fact that this argument presupposes and underlines the addictive nature of some illicit drugs which legalization proponents often downplay , addictive enough to create a viable criminal supply industry.
Secondly, the harms of increased addictive drug use, which as previously outlined would be a consequence of legalization and its cheaper prices, far outweigh the current crime harms of prohibition. Although criminal punishments vary with rooting out drug usage, it is not the foremost eradication technique to resolve drug abuse issues. In order to combat these issues, the application of treatment and support group resources coupled with community support and understanding, has far higher long-term potential to cure the ever-growing epidemic plaguing the nation, especially in rural areas.
Prohibition protects the drug cartel insofar as it keeps the distribution in the black market and creates the risk that makes smuggling profitable. Critics of drug prohibition often cite the fact that the end of alcohol prohibition in led to immediate decreases in murders and robberies to support the argument that legalization of drugs could have similar effects. Once those involved in the narcotics trade have a legal method of settling business disputes, the number of murders and violent crime could drop.
Robert W. Sweet , a federal judge, strongly agrees: "The present policy of trying to prohibit the use of drugs through the use of criminal law is a mistake". Similarly, drug dealers today resolve their disputes through violence and intimidation, something which legal drug vendors do not do. Prohibition critics also point to the fact that police are more likely to be corrupted in a system where bribe money is so available.
Police corruption due to drugs is widespread enough that one pro-legalization newsletter has made it a weekly feature. Drug money has been called a major source of income for terrorist organizations. Critics assert that legalization would remove this central source of support for terrorism. US government agencies and government officials have been caught trafficking drugs to finance US-supported terrorist actions in events such as the Iran-Contra Affair , and Manuel Noriega but the isolated nature of these events precludes them from being major sources of financing.
Human rights organizations and legal scholars have claimed that drug prohibition inevitably leads to police corruption. Despite the fact that most drug offenders are non-violent,  the stigma attached to a conviction can prevent employment and education. Janet Crist of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy mentioned that the anti-drug efforts have had "no direct effect on either the price or the availability of cocaine on our streets".
The lack of government regulation and control over the lucrative illegal drug market has created a large population of unregulated drug dealers who lure many children into the illegal drug trade. The prevalence of having been offered, sold, or given an illegal drug on school property ranged from With respect to drug crop cultivation, eradication efforts in line with prohibitionist drug policies ultimately force coca, poppy, and marijuana growers into more remote, ecologically sensitive areas.
Out of fear of eradication, cultivators are incentivized to accelerate production cycles in order to obtain the highest yield in the shortest period of time; the pace and methods used by growers neglect measures to promote sustainability, exacerbating the environmental impact. Drug cultivators typically opt to produce in areas with ecosystems with abundant plant biomass to better conceal their operations. Ultimately, this practice leads to increased deforestation which contributes to a greater influx of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
Moreover, the aerial spraying of herbicides such as glyphosate used in eradication and control efforts have been shown to have negative effects on environmental and human health. The " balloon effect " also operates further up the drug commodity chain in countries where drugs are trafficked rather than cultivated. Like eradication programs, interdiction pushes traffickers into remote areas where they exacerbate preexisting pressures on forestland.follow url
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Traffickers use slash and burn practices to convert forest into arable land for cash crop production for the purposes of money laundering as well as the construction of clandestine roads and airstrips. The war on drugs and prohibitionist policies only serve to aggravate the already detrimental impacts of narco-trafficking on Central American forests. Intensified ecological devastation across cultivation and trafficking zones is yet another negative unintended consequence of emphasis on supply-side narcotic reduction borne by poor countries.
Several drugs such as dimethyltryptamine ,  morphine  and GHB  are illegal to possess but are also inherently present in all humans as a result of endogenous synthesis.
Since some jurisdictions classify possession of drugs to include having the drug present in the blood in any concentration, all residents of such jurisdictions are technically in possession of multiple illegal drugs at all times. When the cost of drugs increases, drug users are more likely to commit crimes in order to obtain money to buy the expensive drugs. In response to the issue of consistency with regard to drug prohibition and the dangers of alcohol former director of the ONDCP John P. Walters , has said, "It's ludicrous to say we have a great deal of problems from the use of alcohol so we should multiply that with marijuana".
Since alcohol prohibition ended and the War on Drugs began there has been much debate over the issue of consistency among legislators with regard to drug prohibition. Many anti-prohibition activists focus on the well-documented dangers of alcohol such as alcoholism, cystisis, domestic violence, brain and liver damage.
In addition to anecdotal evidence , they cite statistics to show more deaths caused by drunk driving under the influence of alcohol than by drivers under the influence of marijuana,  and research which suggests that alcohol is more harmful than all but the most "dangerous" drugs. When the level of harm associated with the other drugs includes harm that arises solely as a result of the drugs illegality rather than merely that danger which is associated with actually using the drugs, only heroin, cocaine, barbiturates and street methadone were shown to be more harmful than the legal drug alcohol.
It is argued that inconsistency between the harm caused and the legal status of these common drugs undermines the declared motives of the law enforcement agencies to reduce harm by prohibition, for example of marijuana. In February , the UK government was accused by its most senior expert drugs adviser Professor David Nutt of making political decisions with regard to drug classification, for example in rejecting the scientific advice to downgrade ecstasy from a class A drug.
The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs ACMD report on ecstasy, based on a month study of 4, academic papers, concluded that it is nowhere near as dangerous as other class A drugs such as heroin and crack cocaine, and should be downgraded to class B. The advice was not followed.
The drug that I am talking about is marijuana, and surprisingly it is all around us. Marijuana Legalization Marijuana legalization is an issue that the United States is currently facing. Through all branches and aspects of government, the concept of marijuana legalization can be applied and understood. In order to better frame the policy issue, the policy should be viewed through different lenses and all aspects of government.
In this essay, it will be shown how marijuana legalization truly incorporates all areas of government interest. First, the politics of marijuana legalization. Marijuana or Cannabis is a plant that is cultivated in large quantities and is either consumed, smoked, or inhaled to create a certain kind of altered mental and physical effect, which is referred to as a high.
Though Marijuana may be considered a dangerous substance to most, it should be legalized because the economic, social, and political standpoints outweigh the negatives and is not as harmful to the United States as perceived. Throughout history, Marijuana was legal but. It is one of the most frequently used and popular drugs in the world along with caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol.
The United States of America is one of the world's leading producers of marijuana where it is generally smoked and. Responding to the crisis, the US department of Justice established the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous drugs, which was designed to control illegal drugs, specifically marijuana.
There currently exists a great debate concerning Legalization of marijuana. Many people are against the idea, but there are a number of people who fight for the idea to legalize Marijuana. The people that try to Legalize Marijuana use two major arguments in their effort to have marijuana legalized.
First, which is by far the biggest argument is that marijuana has a significant medical use.
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