Legalization of Marijuana

Legalization of Marijuana

Legalizing marijuana can be risky according to many and  still, the number of people supporting its legalization has kept growing. Marijuana has always been a controversial topic. It is because pot smoking despite being a part of the American culture has been associated with drugs and addiction. However, it seems this may be the time for some open talk about it. There are several myths regarding the properties of marijuana and its uses needing to be cleared. The existing marijuana laws affect the young people and people of color disproportionately. Its association with crime and criminal organizations is well known. Marijuana has remained the main source of revenue for several criminal organizations, not just in US but several of its neighboring countries too. Simultaneously its medicinal uses and benefits are neither unknown to us. In the debate over its legalization, the number of the supporters seems to be growing very fast. A very large number of people believe that its legalization could have quite effects.

Legalization has got obvious benefits:

legalization of marijuana
Marijuana: Legalize it.

Legalizing it will not just cut the source of revenue for many criminal organizations but also reduce drug related crimes and incarcerations. The supporters have generally argued that legalizing weed could help the state tap into a large source of revenue. Weed is less dangerous than alcohol or cigarette or even guns. A large number of states also favor the legalization of Marijuana. However, the primary question is if there can be adverse effects of its legalization. The skeptics believe that it will make marijuana more accessible to teenagers and lead to abuse. Despite it, one thing is certain. Legalizing marijuana could definitely reduce the number of incarcerations that happen regularly for possession of weed.

Marijuana is a medicinal herb

The medical use of marijuana is already legalized in a large number of states. The recreational use of marijuana has been controversial. Marijuana has been used for a long time for curing pain. Research suggests that it can be a valuable medicine in the treatment of a wide variety of diseases like glaucoma, chronic pain and several mental or psychological disorders. It has got immense therapeutic value and denying its medicinal use to millions suffering from pain would be tragic. Therefore, legalizing the medicinal use of marijuana sounds proper. A large number of national and international health organizations have advocated legalizing medical marijuana and providing patients with immediate access. Medicinal marijuana has also been found to be effective in the treatment of Parkinson’s and Post–traumatic stress. Research has found it to be effective in a wide range of other diseases including Hypertension, Huntington’s, Epilepsy, Osteoporosis and several other diseases. Marijuana can be a boon for people suffering from these diseases and restricting access is nothing short of tragic. Legalizing marijuana can provide easier access for these patients. The problems arise when people use it excessively. Excessive smoking of pot can cause dependency and damage the brain and lungs.

Reduction in crime

Every year people are arrested in large numbers for the selling or keeping marijuana. A large part of these arrests involve young people and African Americans. In America, there are millions who smoke pot and they are not considered bad people. However, its possession is against law and that is a contradiction. Marijuana might not be a bad or very harmful substance but has the image of a gateway drug. The incarcerations that happen daily for its illegal possession can be reduced if marijuana is legalized. Apart from that the revenue that has kept flowing to the criminal organizations or criminals who trade it illegally could instead reach the government. If the government is willing to reform the existing marijuana laws, the situation can change. Possibly a lot of crime in the society can also be reduced. At least, its illegal trade will be under control. This will provide the government with a legal and secure channel of revenue too. Even all those street fights that happen over its illegal trade could be minimized. Legalizing weed makes sense from several angles.

Legalizing Marijuana is common sense

However, the skeptics do not agree. In their view legalizing marijuana means providing anyone and every one access to it. This means that young people and teenagers will have uncontrolled access to marijuana. Well, nothing can be farther from the truth. If we are to legalize marijuana we can also implement safety controls. The sales of weed to underage people shall be illegal. We have implemented safety controls in case of alcohol. Why cannot the same controls be implemented in the case of marijuana? Legalizing marijuana does not mean we will throw safety to the air. Safety is still a priority and responsible use can be ensured through the legal framework. However, the major difference that can come with legalization is that financial support for crime will be reduced. The crime syndicates that use marijuana to finance crime shall feel the adverse effects. That is again a benefit for the society and the government. There is no reason that marijuana should be allowed to remain in the hands of criminals. Government can take its control through legalization and through the establishment of a proper safety framework which illegalizes its sales to underage people. Legalizing a herb that has so many medicinal uses is common sense.

Abhijeet Pratap

Abhijeet has been blogging on educational topics and business research since 2016. He graduated with a Hons. in English literature from BRABU and an MBA from the Asia-Pacific Institute of Management, New Delhi. He likes to blog and share his knowledge and research in business management, marketing, literature and other areas with his readers.