The war on drugs has been lost. Marijuana users are aware of all health hazards their addiction to marijuana may led them to; but no authority of law is capable of preventing them from smoking marijuana as one of their favorites. Legalization of marijuana would lead to a better control of its consumption. Besides, marijuana, legal as tobacco, would turn people from illegal drugs, which are more expensive and much more dangerous. Marijuana is considered a gateway drug that causes problems at home and at work, reduces concentration, learning, and memory powers, releases dopamine that gives a feeling of euphoria, and contains cancer-causing agents. Illegal status of marijuana solves no problems of drug abuse.
In 2006, American marijuana farmers grew 22.3 million pounds of marijuana. The top outdoor producers are California, Tennessee, Kentucky, Hawaii, and North Carolina. Great material sources are spent on eradicating marijuana crops, but, like with a wave of a magic hand, they grow in more and more unpredictable locations. Why not to legalize marijuana?
The war against marijuana was unleashed 76 years ago when Congress passed the Marijuana Tax Act on the basis of a poorly tested testimony that it could cause insanity, criminality, and death. The 1951 Boggs Act and the 1956 Daniel Act increased penalties, promoting the gateway theory (Gettman, 2006). The war is still on, although it has been proved that marijuana is not more dangerous than tobacco or alcohol.
Marijuana has been used for centuries for medicinal purposes. It has healing properties. Unlike tobacco and alcohol, marijuana may serve people in a couple of ways. First, marijuana improves appetite. Second, it prevents AIDS patients from weight loss. Third, it helps glaucoma patients lessen eye pressure. Fourth, it reduces nausea caused by radiation and chemotherapeutic treatments. Fifth, it is an effective painkiller. Thus, marijuana helps these patients improve their condition.
Nine states, among them Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Maine, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington, have passed legislation that permits marijuana use for medical purposes. Current research has proved that marijuana is not physically addicting. What is more, it has been proved that no physical withdrawal symptoms occur when marijuana use is stopped. Marijuana’s status must be reconsidered legislatively. Marijuana must be excluded from the war on drugs content because it is less abusive than alcohol.
Legalization implies better control. When better controlled, marijuana would serve people who need its healing properties. People should be free to decide whether they like marijuana as a recreational drug or not. When tempted, we often desire something that is hard to reach. The younger people, the more tempted they are to break rules. Welcoming marijuana, we would think of drug addiction in a new paradigm than before.