Marijuana vs. Alcohol
Is marijuana safer than alcohol, many people will say that marijuana is a dangerous and addictive drug that has destroyed many lives of teens and adults. It can lead to lung disease, heart disease and more importantly can influence the use of harder drugs such as cocaine, heroin and PCP. Alcohol on the other hand may not cause lung cancer, it’s simply a social indulgent. In my opinion, I believe that both marijuana and alcohol are equals. Use of both carry health risks, alter mental and physical states, impair one’s judgments and are addicting. They can be even more dangerous when used together. I think having a casual cocktail with dinner or while listening to your favorite band is more socially acceptable than smoking a joint. Used is moderation is the key. Whether its alcohol or marijuana, if people had the self control to use them in moderation it may be safe. However a lot a people cannot control the use of either alcohol or marijuana and that is what seems to cause a problem. In this article, the writer says that Americans, we have been mislead, in regards to marijuana and how it affects teens and adults and where those that use it fit in with society. They say to forget what we have been told in the past, and understand that it is far less harmful than the government has told us. The article makes several “alcohol vs marijuana comparisons relating to death, overdoses, health-related costs, brain damage, cancer, addiction and risk of injury. Other comparisons include behavior, crime, domestic abuse and assault, all pointing to more reported incidences to alcohol than marijuana. The writer states an article published in the Journal of Addictive Behaviors reported that “alcohol is clearly the drug with the most evidence to support a direct intoxication-violence relationship” whereas “cannabis reduces the likelihood of violence during intoxication.” (saferchoice.org) Another example given was from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism which estimates that 25-30% of violent crimes in the United States are linked to the use of alcohol. In reading, supporting details were weak. The author did not give many statistics to back up the information given and when statistics were given, they were based on British journals or studies conducted in Britain. When someone is trying to argue or persuade, the evidence should be based on studies conducted in our country not studies from another country. The circumstances and how people use alcohol or marijuana in Britain may not be the same. In some of the statements made there were no supporting details. In the comparison,” Alcohol use damages the brain, marijuana does not” it continues to say that the studies seem to show that marijuana actually has neuroprotective properties, but there is nothing quoted giving any evidence of this. Upon personal research, a study conducted by the NIAAA (National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism reveals that marijuana dependency as repeated instances of use under hazardous conditions, clinically meaningful impairment in social/occupational/educational functioning; or legal problems. (niaaa.nih.gov) This information was not noted in the original comparison. The entire article leaves you thinking that the opinion of the author is definitely biased against alcohol.
The author effectively uses ethos and logos in their writing by pointing out that Americans have been taught and believe that alcohol is far more dangerous than marijuana. Every time you watch the news or read the paper there are always reports of fatal accidents caused by a drunk driver, but rarely are there reports of fatalities caused by marijuana use. If marijuana impairs the neurological system then is surely effects your judgment, reaction time and other impulses that are required to be sharp when driving, so how can there not be any logical reasons why someone who has been smoking...
Cited: "Marijuana vs. Alcohol." n.d. saferchoice.org. Document. 02 February 2014.
(New Research Study in JAMA Shows Adult Marijuana Abuse and Dependence Increased During 1990s)
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