I believe marijuana should be legalized

Holly - palm desert, California
Entered on May 28, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
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I believe that marijuana should be legalized. The side effects of marijuana include negative and positive effects. Many may experience short term memory loss, altered mind perception, increased appetite, and in some cases paranoia. Marijuana contributes to more mental effects, but may also be harmful towards lungs and throat. Although it may seem harmful, take into consideration of what other legal drugs can do to you.

Alcohol versus marijuana contribute to many more internal side effects. Both are drugs and distort your perception, but the difference is if you are of legal age you can easily buy a 12 pack of beer at the gas station. When driving you shouldn’t be under the influence of marijuana and alcohol. While alcohol is highly addictive and can result in overdose, marijuana can do neither. Marijuana may result in a mental addiction, but it is impossible to overdose on it. It is clear that alcohol is just or more harmful, so why is that marijuana is still illegal? Alcohol is considered a drug, so why is it the only one to be legalized? It brings a point to mind, why is one worse than the other?

People believe that smoking marijuana and smoking cigarettes are equal, that is not true. First of all people who smoke cigarettes smoke more than someone who smokes marijuana. They are definitely more addictive than smoking marijuana as well. Lung cancer has never been directly linked to smoking marijuana. A Berkeley carcinogenic states “marijuana is one-and-a-half times as carcinogenic as tobacco.” Therefore smoking marijuana is just as or less harmful than cigarettes, yet is still not legalized.

Legalizing marijuana can also benefit the medical field too. Patients who are HIV positive say smoking marijuana relieved their pain. Cancer patients undergoing chemo are able to have a medical marijuana card which helps with relieving pain and nausea. Many legal painkillers prescribed by doctor’s have been known to be addictive and as dangerous as smoking marijuana.

The government could make profit if they were in control of marijuana sales. They would be able to set taxes and control how much marijuana is being consumed. The government could raise taxes, just like cigarette and alcohol taxes. People will keep buying even though taxes are raised. We would also save a lot of money for how many criminals who are now or were previously serving jail for possession of illegal drugs. It would eliminate many people from jailing system which would reduce the crowding in jails.

I truly believe in legalizing marijuana and the facts show, that it is not as evil as it is led on to be. Many other legal things in our life can result in worse consequences. There are many benefits in legalizing marijuana that we should use. Our times are changing and the “war on drugs” era has past, people will always be illegal using this drug so instead of fighting it, why not control it?