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The legalization of drugs is a common topic in America today. Many believe that drug use should be legalized, but I completely disagree. Drugs are frequently used today and they are illegal, the consequences that would grow if they were made legal would be more than this country can take on. In my opinion, three main factors contribute to my opinion opposing legalizing drugs: health issues, the effects it would have on the criminal justice system, and the increase in availability of drugs. According to the National Vital Statistics Reports, 19,102 deaths from drug-induced causes occurred in 1999(drug statistics). The use of drugs can lead to death, which alone is a factor to keep them illegal. The use of illicit drugs should remain illegal due to their intoxicating effects on the brain, their potential for abuse, and the harm they cause not only on the user but on society as a whole. If drugs were made legal then it would cause a threat to the good of society. More people would engage in drug use, resulting in more abusers, more of the public “high , and in the end more deaths would occur from the use of drug.( question about mirijuana) Another factor making legalization of drugs absurd is the effects it would have on the criminal justice system. The U.S. has very strict laws on the use and distribution of illicit drugs.
Even though drugs are still widely available and used, the War on Drugs has kept many Americans away from drug use.( drug statistics) Many drug users commit crimes while under the influence of drugs, trying to get drugs, or to get money to buy drugs. According to the Bureau of Criminal Statistics, 11.5% of violent crimes and 24.4% of property crimes were committed in order to get money for drugs.( Marijuana Addiction)By legalizing illicit drugs it would only increase the amount of crimes committed. Another interesting statistic is that 28% of victims of violence reported that the offender was using drugs, alone or in combination with alcohol.(drug statistics) By making drugs legal it is only going to reduce the safety of American citizens. Drugs today are widely available for anyone who has the sufficient funds to buy them. Considering that illicit drugs are illegal, it is odd that they are so commonly used. By legalizing the use of drugs, it would only make them more available and easier to get. According to the Bureau of Criminal Statistics, 73.3% of high school seniors used alcohol in the past twelve months( questions about marijuna). Alcohol is illegal to anyone under the age of twenty-one, but since it is legal for the rest of society it is easy to purchase or obtain. If drugs were made legal, then a large amount of under age consumers would be able to easily get their hands on them. Drug use would not only be more common for adults but children as well.
The legalization of drugs is a ridiculous idea that would only worsen the moral of American society. Last semester I took drugs and crime with Dr. Wolfe and we discussed this idea regularly. We mostly talked about legalizing the use of marijuana. This is more understandable and possible then legalizing the use of all drugs. But then you have to ask the question: if we legalize marijuana where does it stop? The result would be a slippery slope to legalizing every other drug. When it comes to legalizing illicit drugs there can be no medium. By keeping drugs illegal in America we are keeping society healthier, more sober, and safer in the end.
Cloud, John. “Questions About Marijuana: Is Pot Good For You? – TIME.” Breaking News, Analysis, Politics, Blogs, News Photos, Video, Tech Reviews – TIME.com. 4 Nov. 2002. Web. 29 Oct. 2009.