The current drug laws are doing more harm than good, legalizing marijuana would benefit the country in many ways. It would increase revenue for states. If marijuana were legal, the states would have more money to spend on important problems. Also marijuana has many medical benefits. Marijuana has been a part of humanity for almost as long as history has been recorded. Written references to the use of marijuana as a medicine date back nearly 5000 years. (L. Grinspoon and J. Bakalar. 1997 )
Currently, more than 60 U. S. and international health organizations including the American Public Health Association, Health Canada and the Federation of American Scientists, support granting patients immediate legal access to medicinal marijuana under a physician’s supervision. (Head, 2013) Marijuana is looked down on because it is the most used illegal drug. There are risks associated with the use of marijuana but the benefits outweigh them. Many medical associations now back the legalization of medical marijuana.
In my personal life I have had an aunt that medical marijuana made her life more tolerable while under going chemotherapy, my cousin dieing of AID used medical marijuana to increase his appetite. I have also know many Vietnam Veterans that used it to help with their PTSD. I have personally seen the results, such as a patient being treated for depression come off a zip lock bag full of medications to just smoking or eating a dose of Medical Marijuana 2 or 3 times a day, Then the patient weened themselves off the Marijuana and returned to a normal functioning life.
The results I have seen from other people, that just use the prescribed medications for depression were a lot different. According to The New York Times, The New England Journal of Medicine “acknowledges that marijuana use may cause long-term adverse effects and lead to serious addiction. But it argues that these distant risks are not relevant issues when the drug is prescribed to combat intractable nausea and pain in seriously ill patients with AIDS, cancer and other diseases. It does not make sense to prohibit physicians from rescribing marijuana when they are allowed to prescribe morphine and other narcotics, wrong dosages of which may hasten death, and when there is no risk of immediate death with marijuana.
While a synthetic form of a key ingredient of marijuana is available by prescription, the journal said, smoking marijuana provides rapid and more effective relief. ” (Micheal, 1997) Marijuana does not only help patients suffering from diseases like AIDS and cancer but it also has been suggested that marijuana can protect the body against some types of tumors. The active ingredient in marijuana cuts tumor growth in common lung cancer in half and significantly reduces the ability of the cancer to spread”, say researchers at Harvard University who tested the chemical in both lab and mouse studies. (Staci, 2007) Not only is marijuana beneficial as medication, but there is the benefit of increased income to States via taxes and revenue. Legalizing marijuana would also be harmful to drug cartels.
Passage of one of the three state ballot measures to legalize marijuana in Washington, Colorado or Oregon could significantly weaken Mexican drug cartels, according to a new study by a Mexican think tank. “It is estimated that around one-third of Mexican drug gangs’ income is from marijuana, surpassed only and narrowly by cocaine,” according to the LA Times. Legalization in even one U. S. state would likely cut into cartels’ profits by 22 to 30 percent, based on estimates that U. S. -produced marijuana would retail at a little more than half the price of illegally produced Mexican marijuana. (Flatow, 2012)
If marijuana were to be legalized and taxed, like alcohol and tobacco products, there would be an increase of money into the U. S. Economy. In a study by the analysts at the Tax Policy Center it was estimated “that a marijuana tax could bring in $9 billion a year in state and federal tax revenues and save roughly the same amount on law enforcement. (PETERS, 2012) Various parts of the plant can be utilized in the making of textiles, paper, paints, clothing, plastics, cosmetics, foodstuffs, insulation, animal feed and the other products. According to Larry West,(2013) The U. S. is the only developed country that has not established Marijuana as an agricultural crop. Britain lifted a similar ban in 1993, Germany and Canada followed suit soon after, and European Union has subsidized marijuana production since the 1990s.
In conclusion, Just as prohibition of alcohol created organized crime, today’s anti marijuana laws keep organized crime thriving and all the violence and corruption that goes along with it. Marijuana is a beneficial as a medication and cash crop for the United States If marijuana were legal and sold under the same laws as cigarettes, alcohol and OTC medications, the results would be Increased jobs, more revenue for states via taxes and less unnecessary criminal court cases wasting time and money.