The Gateway to Marijuana Legalization
As the subject of many debates, the legalization of marijuana in the U.S. has sparked many controversial conversations ranging from the effect on learning to the medicinal uses of the plant. To finally put an end to this argument, Cannabis Sativa should absolutely be legalized, taxed, and definitely used for medicinal purposes. The laws today are immoral and are a waste of time, money and resources. Thinking within a utilitarian mindset, the ideals behind weed being illegal are not only immoral, they are not logical. A utilitarian can see the many uses that outweigh the consequences which are mainly based on the illegality of carrying, using, and growing marijuana. When the ultimate goal of a society is the success of the society itself, changing a law that has a reasonable alternative is an example of one of the many building blocks for a better life for the people. Documented evidence of marijuana use dates back to 500AD when mentioned in the Jewish sacred text (the Talmud). Hemp has been used in many facets in the past and is still used today. The DEA Museum has a collection of antique medicine bottles containing cannabis that were used in the 1800s. In California, Proposition 19 (legalization of marijuana for personal use monitored by local governments) is still debated and currently has not been approved. Many believe that treating marijuana use like alcohol will be the answer to its legalization. The state of Texas currently has accounted for over 680,000 arrests for marijuana possession and related charges in 2011. The total amount spent by the state for 2011 so far is over 39 billion on drug interdiction. In 2009 Texas law enforcement seized 177 marijuana gardens, 6 wild marijuana fields, 13 cultivated fields and 373 marijuana greenhouses according to the Texas Department of Public Safety website. The reported total of all plants seized was 30,498. 565,007 pounds of marijuana and 264 pounds of hashish were seized during 2010 as well. Statistics show an average increase of drug abuse offenders in Texas by 3% annually. Perry has proposed that the Texas legislature has approved an additional hundred million dollars during the legislative session to sustain border security efforts and ongoing operations. Studies show that Cannabis is the most widely used drug throughout the world. By 1930 there were approximately 30 pages dedicated to the uses of marijuana for pharmaceutical purposes in the Pharmacopeia. In 1942 cannabis was removed from the Pharmacopeia due to government interdiction. Dr. Lester Grinspoon (Harvard Medical School) expressed in an interview that there was no scientific reasoning behind the banning of marijuana from the book. Due to this banning, doctors became unfamiliar with the many uses of marijuana. The active chemical of Cannabis called THC was discovered in 1964 and this discovery led to studies focused on the drug’s psychoactive properties. Thomas Ungerleider, MD (UCLA) was part of “The Shafer Commission” in 1972 under President Nixon. This project studied the uses of cannabis focusing on researching the side effects having negative results. Funding for the study was ultimately terminated by President Nixon. As per the Amsterdam website, www.amsterdam.info, Dutch drug policy is unique in the whole world. It is directed by an idea that every human being may decide about the matters of its own health. The Dutch consider this rule as fundamental, accepting for example as the only country in the world, the possibility of the controlled suicide (voluntary euthanasia), for terminally ill patients. Another idea which guides Dutch laws in their drug policy is a conviction that hiding social negative phenomena does not make them to disappear, on the contrary makes them worse, because when concealed, they become far more difficult to influence and control. Applying these ideas to their drug laws the Dutch try as much as possible to...
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