Legalization of Marijuana Rhetoric

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Victoria Cantu
Professor Moore
English 1301-033
16 July 2012
Should Marijuana Be Legalized?
In her essay “Here's why I'm against legalizing marijuana,” Loolwa Khazzoom addresses the debate about legalizing marijuana in the United States. Around 2003, Khazzoom visited Amsterdam, where marijuana was legal. In an attempt to avoid marijuana, she searched for an internet café free from smoke, and failed. She resorted to the downstairs area of a café where the designated smoking section was upstairs. While she was there, Khazzoom was still hit by a “pretty hefty contact high” and was barely able to make her way back to the place she was staying. She did not enjoy the rest of her stay because of the “pot-induced headache” she would receive again and again with the presence of marijuana smoke. Khazzoom returned to America glad that she could be in public without being effected by marijuana. Her central idea is that marijuana should not be legalized in the USA for the same reasons she supported the ban of cigarette smoking in public places, but, at the same time, she believes that people should not be punished for smoking marijuana privately. Although Khazzoom uses the logical, emotional, and ethical appeals to argue her point, she focused on the use of the emotional appeal and skimped on the use of the logical appeal, which led to a less than persuasive essay. The method of development used was narration, in which Khazzoom told a story about her experience in a place where marijuana is legalized. Khazzoom does not effectively use the logical appeal to support her claim that the public use of marijuana in the United States should be kept illegal. Attempting to utilize the logical appeal, Khazzoom mentions that “marijuana kill[s] brain cells” as well as “create[s] a contact high” (para. 3), which suggests that marijuana harms anyone in contact with marijuana smoke. These statements may be true, but Khazzoom supplies no statistics, facts or evidence to prove so....
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