Drugs like marijuana have always been associated with the word illegal. Illegal drugs as they call it have not actually been proven harmful to the human system. These illegal drugs have gained a negative connotation because of black propaganda. Since evidence points to the fact that these “illegal drugs” are not harmful, there is no reason why it should remain illegal. Theoretically, legalizing drugs will result in a multitude of benefits for the country. According to Dr.
Benson Roe, professor emeritus and and former Chair of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the University of California, there is no “reliable and objective” scientific evidence existent that would prove that illegal drugs like marijuana, heroine and cocaine should be deemed illegal. Roe narrated an incident when he consulted the San Francisco Coroner and was surprised to discover that the only causes of deaths from drug use are from contaminated needles and cases of overdose.
It is believed that drugs are evil and that the local government should make an effort to keep its citizens away from drugs but the term “evil” is taken from subjective values and may be hard to define. Calling illegal drugs like marijuana, cocaine, and heroine as “deadly poison” is a “hoax”. It is argued that if these drugs is associated with negative health effects, research should have indicated evidence but there is no concrete evidence that would prove that the drugs if taken properly and at the right amount is harmful (Roe).
Particularly, the argument that marijuana is not harmful to the human has spawned much research and evidence has indicated that marijuana users cannot suffer from an overdose. It is however found to worsen some mental disorders but it does not necessarily cause the disorder. Also, no relevant data showed that marijuana affects the human brain structure although long-term exposure to marijuana has affected brain function in some complex tasks. Smoking marijuana has only resulted in minor respiratory problems unlike tobacco that contributes to severe respiratory ailments such as lung cancer and emphysema.
Some contents of marijuana have been found to affect sperm but the result is easily reversed with abstinence. Cannabis has also not been proven to have negative effects on the immune system (Earleywine, p. 143). Very few studies have indicated that marijuana intoxication alters the thinking and memory of people even with years of daily use while other studies have indicated that users of the drug performed just as well as non-users in a multitude of tasks. This is evidence to attest that marijuana does not affect memory, intelligence and learning functions (Earleywine, p. 7). Drugs have only been touted as illegal and harmful because of black propaganda. Witching the news, you would often come across the phrase “drug-related”. Unintentionally, the media has been part of this black propaganda. Even if a crime was not traced to be the result of drug-use, the media has always referred to drugs as the primary factor that contributed to the crime on drugs. Crime is usually motivated by another factor aside from drugs (Jackson).
The society has been exposed to many of the elements pertaining to drugs as evil that existing drug laws have always been perceived as natural. To add, politicians have always been masquerading as good public servants and calling for tougher drug laws just to forward their political career (Jackson). These politicians also make use of many vague and emotive terms which of the key elements of propaganda (Russel). Other anti-drug groups make use of climatic stories to sway the public to support their cause which is to continue the war on drugs.
Instead of forwarding a good cause, it is usually these groups that show gruesome images of killings and they blame it on drugs to garner support from the public. In a book entitled Hugs not Drugs: A Drug Abuse Prevention Manual, published in the Philippines, the author started one chapter with a story. She narrated how a female high school student got involved in drugs. The student joined a fraternity which holds regular pot sessions and she got so hooked on drugs that she had to stop schooling and she ended in relationships with different men that only took advantage of her (Osorio, p. ).
This is one those classic stories that highlight the so-called negative effects of illegal drugs. In such a case, the writer failed to quantify if there are other reasons for the incident and solely blamed everything in drugs. In this case, the drug referred to was marijuana. A succeeding paragraph follows stating that “the overwhelming majority of people who have kept away from drugs find it difficult to sympathize with a recovering addict. ” This is rather a vague statement. Just how many is an “overwhelming majority of people”?
A statement in the book also indicate that studies have been made that links juvenile and violent crimes with drug use but it does not necessarily state who did the study (Osorio, p. 3-4). The book also does not contain a reference page. This and other following statements are filled with vague terminologies. The writer cannot give accurate detail as she only mentioned “an overwhelming majority”. Also, the writer did not provide information on the study that links crime with drug use. The whole book is littered with information that is not referenced.
Also, the book does not have a reference page. In England and in Wales, deaths caused by cannabis in 2005 only amounted to 19 while deaths caused by tobacco amounted to 86,500 and alcohol claimed 6,627 deaths. An issue here arises that tobacco and alcohol which has proven to be more harmful is not outlawed. The figures clearly indicate that there is a staggering difference in the number of deaths caused by tobacco and alcohol versus cannabis. Even if deaths caused by illegal drugs would be included, the numbers would still be a far cry from tobacco-related deaths.
Heroin and morphine only caused 842 deaths, methadone caused 220, and cocaine caused 176 (Drug-Related Deaths). Expect that the number of deaths caused by marijuana would even decrease after legalization since legalization will be accompanied by regulation. Regulation would ensure the quality of the drug which could prevent deaths and experts will be able to tell the public what dosage is proper. Legalization would also make drug prices affordable (Roe) since marijuana is overpriced in the black market. A study at the Fraser Institute indicated that 0. of marijuana is being sold for $8. 60 with only a production cost of $1. 70.
With these figures, the marijuana business seems to be a very lucrative business (Moffatt). Drugs should be considered a social problem and not a criminal one. Legalizing drugs would make the price affordable because it will be taxed and price will be monitored by the food and drug department. Consequently, it will reduce the number of petty street crimes since drug users would no longer be faced with financial constraints just to get their fix (Rose). Existing drug laws only promote criminalization.
Human laws are based on ethical and moral standards but if a bloke was caught in possession of marijuana, he would receive jail time even if there is nothing morally wrong that he did. This only needs to crowding of federal and state prisons. Also, drugs have not been proven to have negative effects. Ultimately, there is not enough reason to consider marijuana and other drugs as illegal. It takes only simple logical thinking to get a grasp of the scenario but people have been too affected by the negative propaganda against drugs that the term “illegal drugs” is as normal as the statement “the earth is round”.
Courtney from Study Moose
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