Marijuana has created a hidden market in the United States which accounts for as much as 10% of the
American economy, according to a study. Laws punish marijuana cultivation more strictly than murder in
some states, but Americans spend more on illegal drugs than on cigarettes. The American economy has
been suffering a downturn, while in the shadow economy of the underground world there are high levels of
success, mimicking the prohibition period of alcohol, which fueled the illegal markets in the 20's and 30s.
No aspect of farming has grown faster in the US over the past three decades than marijuana, with one-third
of the public over the age of 12 having used the drug. It is estimated that marijuana is the nation’s largest
cash crop, producing $25 billion in revenue. Keeping marijuana illegal looks expensive and is expensive.
Did you know that one important reason it was outlawed was because it could be used to make hemp. Hemp
is a plant that is a valuable natural resource which has agricultural and industrial
uses. Hemp could of been used to make paper, so no more tree chopping. Paper is made from dead trees so a
DuPont chemical must be used, but this chemical is not necessary when it is made from hemp. The DuPont
Company put pressure on the politicians to outlaw hemp. Marijuana can also be used to make other products such
clothing and rope. We can even make marijuana oil which can be used as a renewable fuel. What a powerful
economy we could create through the marijuana industry if only, The United States would legalize it.
The various levels of American government have in the past, and will spend in the future, billions of dollars on
marijuana enforcement alone. The laws against the drug are strict, as there were 724,000 people arrested for
marijuana offences in 2001 and about 50,000 went to prison for possession. Commercial growers can serve
sentences far longer than those for murder, but the high risks have had little effect on production or availability.
When surveyed, 89% of secondary school students indicated that they could easily obtain the drug. We could save
our government tons of money in all levels of federal, state and local areas who participate in the “War on Drugs”,
by not using our tax dollars to support the people we jail for using, growing, and selling marijuana. It is extremely
expensive to pay for their food, housing, health care, attorney fees, court costs and other incurred expenses. Instead
we could be collecting taxes on its revenues and have more money to pay for effective drug education programs and
other important causes. The billions of dollars that go to waste fighting the war against an inevitable activity is much
less detrimental to our society then the war itself. With careful regulation of the drug, it could be beneficial to our
society, with minimal risks accompanying the use and more economic advantages. Some such advantages would be
creating a workforce. Farm lands would be needed as well as the laborers needed to help grow and distribute the
plant. Pharmaceutical companies would then distribute the plant to pharmacies like Rite Aid or Walgreens and
these places are going to need an extra helping hand too. The needed expertise of Marijuana would then have its
effects on Universities, Community Colleges, and Certificate Programs. They are going to call on the experts to
help teach classes for our future pharmacists of tomorrow. This will increase enrollment which helps the local
economy as well. Purchasing Marijuana and paying a proposed Marijuana Tax would mean having more money to
spend on important problems, if only it were legal.
Some of the most expensive weed is grown indoors on the west coast using advanced scientific techniques, but
the American heartlands...