An article recently posted on CNN caught my attention. Stuart Gitlow, wrote an article called “Marijuana legalization is a risk not worth taking” bashing the possible positive outcomes that can be brought from marijuana legalization and viewing this delicate situation from a very narrow point of view. The opinions presented are strictly Gitlow’s views, not brought about by anyone else. In this article, Gitlow starts out by comparing marijuana to cigarettes back in the 1980s. He references back to when he was in college and how he would see cigarette smokers everywhere.
It was made illegal in the 1930’s for the same reasons as alcohol, because it was believed that it was going to do harm to society. As years have gone by, it is obvious that a mistake was made. The fact that marijuana was made illegal has created numerous problems for the United States that on the long run could have been easily avoided. Countries in different parts of the world and some states within the United States have already legalized marijuana and they have all shown positive outcomes out of their decisions. Although marijuana is illegal in majority of the states, legalizing marijuana for recreational use would bring about social and economical reforms that would help deter crime in the country, increase the amount of money the government makes, and also help people that are medically in need of the drug.
These minor changes in the way we combat drugs will create significant change and have lasting effects. Some may not be too familiar with the war on drugs and the effects it has had on the society we live in. The war on drugs was started by the Nixon administration in the early seventies. Nixon deemed drug abuse “public enemy number one”. This was the commencement of the war on drugs, this war has lasted to this day and has been a failure.
Cons of Legalizing Recreational Marijuana Marijuana legalization, for whatever reason, has been a topic of heated debate for years now. Different people express different opinions about why or why not it should be legalized for recreational use. The American FDA categorizes marijuana as a Schedule I drug meaning that its benefits are not guaranteed as many people claim. Although the drug has been said to contain medical benefits, the reality is that further research on how and when to use it is needed. Different states have legalized the use of Marijuana for medical reasons.
Millions of people around the world are consumers of marijuana. The demand for legalizing marijuana has grown throughout the years. Users of marijuana pledge for it to be legalized to avoid the prison life. For now, marijuana is an illegal drug in almost all countries. With the demand of it increasing, the legalization of marijuana has grown to be a very controversial topic recently.
Legal and illegal drugs are used on a daily basis all over the world. Currently, drugs remain ranked high on the lists of concerns of Americans and are still considered one of the major problems facing our country today. We see stories almost everyday on the news about people being killed in the streets daily over drugs. To most people, drugs are only an inner-city problem, but in reality they affect all of us, people who use and people who don’t use. I believe that the negative effects we associate with drugs would be greatly reduced if the United States adopted a policy towards the total decriminalization of marijuana.
People believe that if marijuana is legalized users will get addicted. Marijuana use disorder become what is known as addiction when “the person cannot stop using the drug even though it interferes with many aspects of his or her life” (“Is Marijuana Addictive”). Although addiction is a problem, out of all the people who use marijuana, only 9% become dependent on it (“Is Marijuana Addictive”). Also, opioids and painkillers are very addictive as well, and they can lead to an overdose resulting in death. The second concern is abuse.
In the last twenty years, marijuana has become more effective and addictive. Overusing marijuana for a long term has increased the number of crimes, such as smuggling and drugs; which are considered as negative impacts for the society. Based on the data, the marijuana addicts in the world reached 27 million people in 2012. Moreover, The UN said if 5% of the world’s population have been using marijuana, so it is not wrong if the number of marijuana case always increasing. Simply put, it appears that society has already experienced the negative effect of marijuana and had already set a perception of it; it is shown by the severe punishment given to citizens who uses marijuana.
Additionally, some healthcare professionals can be a major source of stigma which can have a substantially negative impact on well-being, and coping abilities of a patient dealing with addiction. Social Psychologist Valerie Earnshaw, a Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, focuses her research on the health effects of stigma, specifically how stigma delays recovery. In her article, “Drug Addiction Stigma In The Context Of Methadone Maintenance Therapy: An Investigation Into Understudied Sources Of Stigma,” she states, “For MMT patients, using drugs as a coping strategy for stigma-related stress and negative emotions may have particularly negative consequences on recovery efforts and mental health” (Earnshaw et. al, 112). The research on Methadone addiction related stigma suggests, the multiple sources of stigma can lead patients to find their own unhealthy ways of coping leaving them possibly untreated (Earnshaw et.
Second to marijuana prescription drugs are now the most common illicit drug used by young adults to get high. Misuse can lead to addiction, and even overdose deaths. Some people have an increased genetic risk of getting addicted to medications but environmental factors such as economic level, lack of employment and pressure from peers also have a significant impact. The definition of abuse of prescription drugs is using
The United States has been dealing with what people call “The war on drugs” for over three decades. Over the years, drug experimentation has become very popular amongst young, middle class Americans. At first, Marijuana was a very common drug to use but as time went on hardcore drug experimentation became the new “thing”. Although the government did crackdown on major drug dealers, they paid little to no attention to the issue. It wasn 't until Nixon called on The War On Drugs.
The usage of marijuana is also a problem for student athletes. Many believe that marijuana is harmless, but that is false. In an article about the truth behind marijuana, someone talks about “an 18-year-old patient who had started smoking marijuana several times a day in 10th grade, dropped out of high school, and had been stealing money from his parents”(Jangi). This exemplifies how marijuana can ruin the life of a perfectly healthy student. One day a student could be living life to the fullest, and the next they could be dropped out of school and living on the streets all because of a “harmless” drug.
Lately, the topic of marijuana legalization in the United States has been tremendously debated by government officials and marijuana users throughout the country. The Marijuana Tax Act of 1937 banned the use and sale of marijuana in the United States (ElSohly). Marijuana should continue to be illegal because of its toxic smoke, use as a gateway drug, and damaging effects on the developing brains of our youth. I personally believe marijuana should remain illegal in the United States for the benefit of our children, our society and our nation. Some people in this country honestly think that marijuana can be beneficial and base their reasoning on the recent legalization of marijuana in Colorado.
These people are not only getting treatment but are also looking at damaging their bodies while using this substance. Short term users sometimes have the effect of feeling mild and relaxed while others, particularly naive users, report anxiety, paranoia, and panic reactions. (McGeorge Law Review C) There are long term effects as well such as slowed information processing, it may actually persist long after discontinuation. (McGeorge Law Review E) People who heavily smoke cannabis like some patients are at risk of getting lung cancer. (McGeorge Law Review F) It can cause serious effects later on in life.