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Should the Federal Government legalize the use of marijuana?
According to the statistics from the federal government, more than 80 millions of American citizens smoke marijuana. Majority of those smoking marijuana are law abiding citizens who work hard, pay taxes, raise families and contribute positively to their societies. Arguably, a good number of people who smoke marijuana are not criminals, and therefore, it will be unfair if they are treated as criminals. Most successful professional leaders and businessmen, including elected and state federal officials confess to have smoked marijuana. As a result, therefore, there is need to reflect on this reality on our federal and state laws. By so doing, the myth that smoking of marijuana is a deviant or a fringe activity would have been put to rest. This paper will give reasons why marijuana should be legalized and argue the fact that there is no major difference between individuals smoking marijuana and those that don’t.
Why marijuana should be legalized
Prohibition of marijuana destroys the careers and lives of thousands of hardworking citizens every year. In last year alone, at least 700,000 citizens were arrested and charged with smoking marijuana. 90 percent of these were arrested for possessing marijuana, and not selling or trafficking marijuana. Arguably, this is a criminal sanction whereby the private lives of citizens are interfered with. The government should rather use its resources to focus on violent and serious crimes.
Recently, the Supreme Court ruled that there were no exceptions in the federal law for distributing or growing of marijuana even if it’s aimed at using marijuana to treat seriously ill patients. Several questions have been asked on how this will affect patients in the states where marijuana has been legalized. Most people will concur that Congress should consider legalizing marijuana because of its medical value.
On the other hand, issues of public health and war on drugs have been confused by majority in the Congress. As a result, patients have been denied effective medication that is provided by marijuana. Most patients will agree that traditional medicine work and desire marijuana as a drug. It should be noted that marijuana is less dangerous as compared with other drugs like tobacco or alcohol. Marijuana does not inflict any serious consequences that the two legalized drugs cause. More than 50,000 people die every year from alcohol. Moreover, more than 400,000 people die from diseases related to tobacco smoking every year. On the contrary, marijuana cannot lead to death even by overdose. Moreover, it is not toxic as compared to the two drugs.
In summation, the government should give a serious consideration in legalizing marijuana. Arguably, the benefits of marijuana are many and by far overweigh the negative aspects of it. It is of no use to legalize alcohol and tobacco which can cause deaths and leave out on marijuana, a drug that can save millions of lives.