Legalization of Marijuana

Topics: Hemp, John Rawls, Cannabis Pages: 4 (1503 words) Published: January 24, 2012
Zach Cuffman
Professor Wolf
Final Paper
December 14, 2009
Cannabis: The Billion Dollar Crop

When most people are asked about their opinion of marijuana, not very many actually have a problem with the drug itself. The driving force behind their decision to be against marijuana is based mostly on the fact that it is illegal. TIME magazine held a poll on their website in which they asked their readers if marijuana should be legalized. Given that TIME’s website is not likely to be a full representation of ALL their readers, nor the rest of the people in the United States, an astonishing 80% of the poll agreed that the legalization of marijuana should be put into effect (St. Pierre 1). One philosopher who would probably side with this 80% is John Rawls, the creator of the “Theory of Justice”. In his theory, Rawls states that we, as a society, should treat things with a veil of ignorance. This meaning to work out the basic principles in a society, one should pretend that they know nothing about our social classes, laws, or anything else (Rawls 12). The specs on marijuana would suggest it is harmless, but it is natural that for every argument against the legalization of marijuana, there is an argument for it. Face it; marijuana’s prohibition in the United States has not stopped its production, possession, or recreational use. This fact leaves many scratching their heads as to why the substance has not yet been legalized. John Rawls, a great American philosopher, would have, most likely, been against the idea of marijuana being illegal. In his main work, the “Theory of Justice”, Rawls pushes hard for a just government and a just society. He argues that not knowing the position of our society on certain issues, along with some pretend ignorance, would lead us to make better decisions (Rawls 13). Along with the “Theory of Justice”, Rawls also created two principles: the “Liberty Principle”, and the “Difference Principle”. The “Difference Principle”...

Bibliography: Armentano, Paul . "The Case for Marijuana Legalization and Regulation." 28 Oct. 2009. 11 Dec. 2009. .
John Rawls, A Theory of Justice, Cambridge, MA: Harvard Press, 1971. Class Readings.
The Union. Dir. Brett Harvey. 2007. Google Videos. 11 Dec. 2009 .
Unknown, “” 19 Jul. 2008. 11 Dec. 2009. .
St. Pierre, Allen . "Marijuana Legalization Zeitgeist In America To Continue Into 2010: Federal Government Lags Behind The States." 23 Oct. 2009. 11 Dec. 2009. .
Professor Wolf,
I chose to use the documentary as one of the sources for my paper. I found this particular documentary to not only be very informational as far as the subject goes, but also gave citations for all of its information. I understand the reasoning for not wanting students to use these, but I found this one to be very professional and credible. Thanks.
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