Legalization of Marijuana

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The Legalization of Marijuana
Jeminesse Hudson
December 22, 2013
David Bliss
The Legalization of Marijuana

What if there were an illegal substance that could boost the U.S. economy and treat terminal illness? Would having a better economy or treating things like AIDS and cancer be more important than keeping a drug illegal? There are several benefits that the legalization of marijuana could provide. The financial state of this country is horrible. If the laws regarding marijuana were changed then maybe marijuana could be a useful financial tool, also. In addition, are also the medical benefits that legalizing marijuana could contribute. Medical marijuana has already proven to help treat illnesses such as AIDS and all types of cancer. While in the past marijuana has always been illegal, it could prove to be a valuable medical and financial tool for America. According to Wikipedia (2013), the legal history of cannabis in the United States relates to the regulation of marijuana use for medical or recreational purposes in the United States. Regulations and restrictions on the sale of Cannabis Sativa as a drug began as early as 1619. Increased restrictions and labeling of cannabis as a poison began in many states from 1906 onward, and outright prohibitions began in the 1920s. By the mid-1930s Cannabis was regulated as a drug in every state, including 35 states that adopted the Uniform State Narcotic Drug Act. Why are regulations that were made back in the mid-1930s still being applied today? I believe the answer lies in this quote “Unfortunately, a review of marijuana legislation would open up a Pandora’s Box most politicians would just as soon avoid (Bangor, 2002, p.). In other words, it would be too much trouble, and that is just to review marijuana legislation, not to change anything. There have even been cases brought to the U. S. Supreme Court regarding current marijuana laws. Unfortunately, a recent U. S. Supreme Court ruling concerning medical marijuana reiterates that federal law supersedes state law and that, until Congress changes federal law concerning marijuana, marijuana use remains a violation of federal law in all states (Cook, G., 2005). This means changes have to be made by Congress. It does not matter what the individual states attempt to do, federal law remains the same. Because these regulations and laws were made before any of the positive uses of marijuana were known, few changes have been made. What could be expected if changes are made? Some of those who are against the legalization of marijuana say chaos. Others who are in favor say, “If we treated marijuana under the law the same way we treat alcohol, we more effectively control its distribution, do a better job of curbing misuse and abuse and reduce crime” (Mirken, B., 2008). Is there any proof of what these activists say about the legalization of marijuana? All the benefits sound too good to be true. In Denver marijuana proponents scored a significant victory as voters around the state passed ballot measures decriminalizing marijuana possession and approved regulatory taxes on the drug (Frosch, D., 2013). Even after an event such as that, there has been little to no news on how much that change has impacted the country. There has to be something more than decriminalization and a small tax to change the way this country sees marijuana. All of us probably knows someone with cancer, or even has a loved one with cancer. Cancer is an illness that plagues the entire world, and unfortunately, there is no known cure. There are several types of treatment, and oncologists work with each patient to find the best possible plan of action. As many of us know, those treatments can be very painful. Marijuana can be used to weaken that pain. Marijuana has been tested and proven to lessen many of the symptoms that are a side effect of cancer treatment. According to Pain Management of America, medical marijuana...
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