Government Research Paper
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Government Research Paper
Drugs have always been one of the most discussed topics worldwide. Specifically talking about the prohibition of marijuana which is also considered as the recreational drug, Americans are divided on whether it should be legalized or not. In Texas the recreational use of Marijuana is illegal even the possession of it up to two ounces is considered as the class B crime which is punishable resulting in the suspension of one’s driving license along with 180 days in prison and a fine of $2000. However, many people are in favor of reforms in the policies regarding the possession of marijuana.
In ancient times people used marijuana to keep away the bad souls from their houses, as a love-philter and to accelerate the deliveries. Due to the new researches done in the field of medical marijuana is used in many drugs, for instance, it is used in the treatment of asthma. Despite its uses in the medical field marijuana intoxication is one of the major reasons due to which there is a ban on the use of marijuana. The intoxication of marijuana is the reason that the Texas City of El Paso banned the use of marijuana and became the first American city to ban marijuana in 1915. Moving on towards 1919 a bill was passed that prohibit the transferring of marijuana for non-medical purposes and in 1931 the marijuana was banned statewide. Since then many reforms in the policy were done to reduce the punishment on possessing marijuana and legalized the use of marijuana for medical purposes. Specifically, in 2019 the House of Representatives passed the bill that considered the one-ounce possession of marijuana as class C crime rather than class B crime. Following this decision, the number of conditions that qualified for the treatment of low-THC treatments was also increased (Neill).
Drug abuse is one of the major issues that every country in the world face. Specifically in America research shows that 21 million people have at least one addiction yet only 10% receive treatment. Particularly, 30 to 400 million people in America smoke marijuana every year and Americans between the ages of 18 to 25 are most likely to use addictive drugs. Although marijuana affects the health of an individual however it is not as dangerous as alcohol or tobacco that is legalized. This is the reason many people are in favor of the argument that marijuana should be legalized and there should be a reduction in the punishment of marijuana possession. While discussing the recreational use of marijuana, the cannabis is scientifically proven to be useful in the prevention of diseases like cancer, anxiety and epileptic seizures (Pickerill). In states such as California and Washington where marijuana is legal people use it as a medicine for relieving pain causing the chances of deadly overdose as zero to none. It is also assumed that the legalization of marijuana will bring revenue to the state which may not be entirely true as the cost associated with alcohol is worth $185 billion yet the government only receives $14 billion in tax revenue. So legalizing marijuana will not be fruitful for the economy besides legalizing marijuana will not stop the illegal selling and buying of marijuana. However, the legalization of marijuana will subsequently reduce the number of people in jails for the possession of more than one ounce of marijuana.
In contrast, many people are not in favor of lifting the ban on marijuana usage. The major reason people opposing marijuana legalization is its harmful effects as any drug that causes divergence and delusion is considered as harmful and marijuana can also attract many people especially teenagers and could make them marijuana addicts. Also, many studies claim that marijuana is the risk factor for many psychotic disorders like schizophrenia, especially in genetically vulnerable people. Additionally, the use of marijuana in adolescence could lead to cognitive impairments such as speech impairment, memory, and perceptual reasoning impairments, etc. Marijuana is also considered as harmful for the respiratory system as it is affiliated with the symptoms of inflammatory lung disease (DiFonzo).
There has always been a debate regarding whether marijuana should be legalized or not. There are some shreds of evidence which proves that compounds naturally found in marijuana have therapeutic benefits related to the symptoms of certain diseases like HIV/AIDS or cancer etc. However, I think that if marijuana is used for this purpose then like other medicines it should also be evaluated based on safety and efficiency in treating the disease. Physicians should only allow the use of marijuana as a medicine to the people who do not have any other alternative medicine for their treatment. Also, the long term effect of using marijuana as a medicine should be tested to avoid any health risk. Additionally, marijuana is addictive and can lead to several mental disorders yet, considering the legalization of alcohol and weed that are far more addictive and can cause extremely negative effects on health the ban on marijuana is not justified. Specifically, the imprisonment of people due to the possession of one ounce of marijuana is also not appropriate considering the amount of weed that people possess (Walton). Although marijuana is addictive so as alcohol and weed so if the government is prohibiting marijuana that may be the only drug that can be used on medicines then they should also prohibit alcohol and weed. Particularly discussing about the marijuana prohibition policy in Texas I strongly agree that there is a need to reform the policy of prohibiting marijuana, especially for medicinal purposes as many people can get benefit from it. However, there should be restrictions on the amount of marijuana used to avoid any future health risks.
DiFonzo, J. Herbie, and Ruth C. Stern. "Divided We Stand: Medical Marijuana and Federalism." Health Law. 27 (2014): 17.
Neill, Katharine A., and William Martin. "Marijuana Reform: Fears and Facts (Update)." Issue Brief 3 (2017).
Pickerill, J. Mitchell, and Paul Chen. "Medical marijuana policy and the virtues of federalism." Publius: The Journal of Federalism 38.1 (2007): 22-55.
Walton, Michelle H. "Marijuana Law, Policy, and Authority." (2017): 82.
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