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Should Australia Legalise Marijuana

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Should Australia Legalise Marijuana

  • Course: English 3/4
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On January 2nd 2014, the Help End Marijuana Prohibition (HEMP) party’s president Michael Bladerstone called for a referendum on whether Australia should legalise the sale and consumption of marijuana, also known as cannabis. This came into action following Colorado’s decision to legalise the distribution and use of this particular drug. The HEMP party is pushing for the legalisation of marijuana for personal and medical use. I believe that marijuana should be made legal to the Australian public due to its extensive medical benefits, the fact that it is a lot safer than alcohol and for the economic benefits that it would bring to our Government.Marijuana has been used as a medicine for thousands of years in countries all over the world. Medical cannabis is used to increase the appetite in patients with HIV, AIDS and cancer, to reduce nausea and vomiting induced by chemotherapy, to reduce the symptoms of chronic pain, to help relieve spasticity in Multiple Sclerosis and Tourette’s and to stop seizures caused by Epilepsy.The Herald Sun undertook and investigation that found that up to 10 Victorian children, some as young as three, are taking daily doses of medical cannabis and in some cases it is being administered by teachers as desperate parents turn their backs on ineffective pharmaceutical drugs.On the 12th of January the Herald Sun also published an article about an eight year old girl called Tara O’Connell who suffered from Epilepsy and was having up to 60 seizures a day. This little girl could no longer walk or talk and was given only months to live. That was until her mother Cheri started giving her doses of liquid cannabis. One year on, she is now a bubbly eight-year old who no longer needs a wheelchair to get around. The only side effects that she experienced were an increase in appetite and fatigue. Imagine all the children whose lives could be saved and change for the better if medical marijuana was made legal and made accessible to everyone. Think of...
On January 2nd 2014, the Help End Marijuana Prohibition (HEMP) party’s president Michael
Bladerstone called for a referendum on whether Australia should legalise the sale and consumption
of marijuana, also known as cannabis. This came into action following Colorado’s decision to
legalise the distribution and use of this particular drug. The HEMP party is pushing for the
legalisation of marijuana for personal and medical use. I believe that marijuana should be made
legal to the Australian public due to its extensive medical benefits, the fact that it is a lot safer than
alcohol and for the economic benefits that it would bring to our Government.Marijuana has been
used as a medicine for thousands of years in countries all over the world. Medical cannabis is used
to increase the appetite in patients with HIV, AIDS and cancer, to reduce nausea and vomiting
induced by chemotherapy, to reduce the symptoms of chronic pain, to help relieve spasticity in
Multiple Sclerosis and Tourette’s and to stop seizures caused by Epilepsy.The Herald Sun
undertook and investigation that found that up to 10 Victorian children, some as young as three, are
taking daily doses of medical cannabis and in some cases it is being administered by teachers as
desperate parents turn their backs on ineffective pharmaceutical drugs.On the 12th of January the
Herald Sun also published an article about an eight year old girl called Tara O’Connell who suffered
from Epilepsy and was having up to 60 seizures a day. This little girl could no longer walk or talk and
was given only months to live. That was until her mother Cheri started giving her doses of liquid
cannabis. One year on, she is now a bubbly eight-year old who no longer needs a wheelchair to get
around. The only side effects that she experienced were an increase in appetite and fatigue.
Imagine all the children whose lives could be saved and change for the better if medical marijuana
was made legal and made accessible to everyone. Think of the people who weren’t given the
chance to try this medical miracle and lost their lives, just like Tara would have.
Marijuana is supposedly illegal because it is a dangerous and addictive drug. But if you compare it
to alcohol which is a legal drug, you’ll see that alcohol is actually a whole lot more dangerous.
Alcohol causes many deaths, whereas cannabis causes none. An article by Jane Mower on the 20th
of November last year stated that the Australian National Council on Drugs found that almost 1 in 8
deaths of people under the age of 25 are due to alcohol. Compare that to marijuana where
Professor Lester Grinspoon said “Despite its use by millions of people over thousands of years,
cannabis has never caused an overdose death.” Alcohol also increases violent and aggressive
behaviour leading to many drunken fights and outburst whereas marijuana relaxes and calms the
user. Another research showed that alcohol is more addictive than marijuana. A study done by three
different doctors, J. Henningfield, N. Benowitz and D. Perrine all found that marijuana was less
addictive than alcohol. In each one of their studies, marijuana ranked the lowest out of all the drugs
for its addictiveness, even coming in below caffeine. So answer me this; why is it that alcohol,
despite all the horrible things it causes it legal and marijuana which is immensely safer is illegal? I
say, that if alcohol is legal, than shouldn’t marijuana be too?
A huge reason as to why marijuana should be legalised is for the economic benefit that it would
bring to our country. Australia spends an estimated amount of $4.7 billion dollars on enforcing law
against marijuana every year. All of this wasted money has had no impact on the availability or the
use of marijuana so why do we continue to throw this much need money away? If marijuana was
made legal we would no longer have to meet the cost for enforcing anti-marijuana laws and the
government would also gain money from tax revenues from the legal sales of cannabis, just like how
the taxes on alcohol and tobacco are major sources of government money. If we followed
Colorado’s initiative and legalised marijuana for medical and personal use the tax on the sales
would become a much needed source of income for the Australian government. If legalising
marijuana has such benefits for our country, why have we not done it yet and why are we still
waiting?
Opponents to legalising the use of cannabis argue that it will increase the likelihood of accidents on
the road. A report from the University of Colorado and Montana state University found that on
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