Legalization of Marijuana in the United States Essay
Order ID 53563633773 Type Essay Writer Level Masters Style APA Sources/References 4 Perfect Number of Pages to Order 5-10 Pages
ENGL1302 Legalization of Marijuana in the United States Essay
With marijuana being the most illicit drug in the United States, its legalization has continued to be a pressing issue due to its two conflicting sides. While many states have decriminalized the use of it, others have legalized it for medical or recreational uses. On the other hand, a handful of states have not changed their marijuana legalization status.
Over the past decade, from 2009 to 2019, the support for marijuana has greatly increased from 32% to 67%, respectively (Daniller). This increase can be influenced by the younger generations as well as the other states who have begun legalizing it. One group of individuals who would greatly benefit from this action are people of color and those who are treated unfairly in regards to marijuana.
This is seen in arrest records and public opinion as blacks are four times more likely to be arrested than whites (“The War on Marijuana in Black and White”). This could not only reduce harm but it gives such groups ease from all the racial tension circulating them.
Secondly, the advocating side may view legalization as a way to boost the economy as it is seen to save money and create more jobs. The money that is usually used to reinforce the illegal use of marijuana can be better used for public safety or other matters that may need more attention such as transportation, education, businesses, and charity donations.
Moreover, this would mean that the government would have new sources for tax revenue coming from the regulated marijuana sales (“Marijuana Legalization and Regulation”). The creation of new jobs would also open doors for many individuals thus further increasing employment rates and contributing to the overall well being of the economy.
The economy would also benefit from this because there would be more money in the circulation as new businesses and jobs would open up in order to regulate the sale of marijuana. More money would mean more product and more consumers, thus creating a flow of businesses.
This extra money that the government would get could be used for donations to help other people and countries in need, put to research to find new cures or innovations, used to plant new trees or restore forests, or even put into our education system. The flow in the economy would also cause marijuana businesses and dispensaries to regulate their products.
This would mean more labels and testing to ensure consumer safety. Moreover, the consumers would be more informed about what they are putting into their bodies rather than being sold something from an unknown origin or source.
Lastly, when marijuana was legalized in states such as Washington and Colorado, traffic deaths and DUI arrests dropped 11% on average (procon.org). This is seen in studies that have proven that drivers under the influence of marijuana tend to drive slower and make fewer lane changes as they are more cautious than those intoxicated by alcohol (procon.org).
This relation reduces the number of deaths caused by marijuana intoxication and reckless driving. Their improved performance also benefits other drivers on the streets as they will be less likely to be harmed if an accident were to occur.
The opposing side to the legalization may look at the other side of these benefits and believe that it may do more harm than good. One drawback, among many others, includes the biggest and most talked-about argument; the harmful effects of the overuse of marijuana.
Many studies have found that heavy marijuana usage in teenagers may impair thinking, memory, and learning functions (drugabuse.gov). This not only affects their learning abilities but also cognitive functions that are required for everyday tasks. Furthermore, this contributes to a decline in IQ points because the human brain is not fully developed in one’s teenage years.
In a study conducted by researchers at Duke University, an average of eight IQ points were lost for those who smoked heavily during their teen years as opposed to individuals who smoked marijuana in their adult years did not show a notable IQ decline (drugabuse.gov).
Another argument that may be brought up by those opposing the legalization is that the costs to legalize and regulate it would outweigh the tax revenues. These costs include increased emergency room visits, medical care, increased crime, and a negative impact on one’s health due to secondhand smoking.
In fact, the estimated income would account for less than 1% of the state’s tax revenue (procon.org). These are just a few of the costs that would be expected to be covered, therefore, in the long run, the expenses are expected to be more than the amount gained. This would affect the taxes collected as well as the societal costs.
The legalization will increase the overall dependency of marijuana because it would be easier and less risky to use it. In the case of withdrawal, symptoms such as insomnia, depression, anxiety, nausea, and stomach pains are known because of how difficult it is to give it up (procon.org).
This means that in this aspect, the overall health of the nation would decrease thus causing more health issues and expenses in the future. This would open the door to a number of mental illnesses as well as marijuana may just be a stepping stone to other, more dangerous, drugs.
Although both viewpoints have several reasons to support their side, I personally believe that the legalization of marijuana would greatly benefit the economy and those living in it. Drawing from the reasons that were previously explained, the economy would become bigger and more diverse with industries that would cater to a bigger pool of people.
This would make the citizens more happy with the government which, in turn, may decrease crime rates and arrests for things such as driving under the influence of marijuana and possession of marijuana. Furthermore, marijuana is already used for medicinal reasons and not everyone can obtain this in circumstances where it may help the individual.
Such circumstances, which affect thousands of people, would include both physical and emotional pain. This, therefore, could benefit hospitals and other healthcare facilities as their range of treatment could increase to treat a greater number of patients. Additionally, the well being and mental/physical state of the people would be different as they would have something to relieve their pain.
Daniller, Andrew. “Two-Thirds of Americans Support Marijuana Legalization.” Pew Research Center, Pew Research Center, 14 Nov. 2019, https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/11/14/americans-support-marijuana-legalization/ .
Aclu. “The War on Marijuana in Black and White.” American Civil Liberties Union, American Civil Liberties Union, 22 Oct. 2018, https://www.aclu.org/issues/smart-justice/sentencing-reform/war-marijuana-black-and-white .
“Marijuana Legalization and Regulation.” Drug Policy Alliance, http://www.drugpolicy.org/issues/marijuana-legalization-and-regulation .
“Pros & Cons – ProCon.org.” Recreational Marijuana, https://marijuana.procon.org/ .
National Institute on Drug Abuse. “Marijuana.” NIDA, https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana#ref .
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The paper has slight errors within the paper. This can include small errors or omissions with the cover page, abstract, page number, and headers. There could be also slight formatting issues with the document spacing or the font Additionally the paper might slightly exceed or undershoot the specific number of required written pages for the assignment. 10 points: Student provides a high-caliber, formatted paper. This includes an APA 6th edition cover page, abstract, page number, headers and is double spaced in 12’ Times Roman Font. Additionally, the paper conforms to the specific number of required written pages and neither goes over or under the specified length of the paper.
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Legalization of Marijuana in the United States Essay
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