Essay - Legalization of Marijuana Introduction Marijuana is One of the Most...

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Legalization of Marijuana


Marijuana is one of the most popular recreational drugs in the United States, exceeded ***** popularity by only alcohol and tobacco. Recent research reveals that "more than 70 million Americans have smoked marijuana at some point in their lives, ***** th***** 18-20 million have ***** during the last year (NORML, 1999)."

***** to R. Keith Stroup, Esq., the executive director of National Organization for the Re*****m of Marijuana Laws (NORML, 1999), "Like most Americans, the vast majority of these millions of marijuana smokers are otherwise law-abiding citizens who work hard, raise families and contribute to ***** communities..." A national survey revealed that 32 percent of voting adults in the U.S. have acknowledged hav*****g smoked marijuana at some point in their lives.

The legalization of marijuana has been a topic of controversy for sever*****l years. Many proponents ***** the drug argue that marijuana should be legalized ***** both medical and recreational use. Others say that it should at least be decriminalized, meaning that the penalty for growing or possession of ***** would be a simple fine, rather than jail time.

***** paper aims to examine the controversial aspects of legalizing marijuana, in an effort to present a strong *****rgument in favor ***** legalizing the drug. The paper will present six valid reasons for ***** the drug, as well as background statements ***** support these arguments.

Re*****ons ***** Legalizing Mariju*****a

There ***** many reasons ***** can be listed in ***** of legalizing *****. It is a common belief that marijuana is not a dangerous drug and many people use it responsibly. Responsible use of *****, according to the ***** Board of Directors (NORML, 1999), means that: ***** adults use it; users do not drive under ***** influence; users resist abuse; and ***** the rights of others are respected. Still, despite these factors, many citizens have been arrested and penalized for possession of marijuana.

According to William F. Buckley, "In 1967, all drug arrests came to 121,000. Of these, hit marijuana arrests were one-half, 61,000. In 1991, all ***** arrests ***** 1 million, marijuana 285,000 (, *****)" Although marijuana is more dangerous of a drug than tobacco, it is also used much less than ***** (University of Michigan-Dearbourne, 1999). The average tobacco smoker smokes about one pack of cigarettes per day, which ***** about twenty *****, while the ***** ***** ***** smokes about two joints a *****. Greg Norris, the author of the essay "The Issues at H*****: Legalization of Marijuana," says (University of Michigan-Dearbourne, *****):

Thus, marijuana contains ***** of the dangerous *****cer causing chemicals than tobacco **********. Although this would constitute marijuana as being more "dangerous," but in the society we live in today and ***** amount ***** tobacco that tobacco-***** consume, this belief is on the contrary. Due to ***** smaller frequency use of product by marijuana-users, tobacco h***** definitely ***** proven the "killer" in today's society." (

In compar*****on to alcohol, marijuana is the ********** detriment." (***** ***** *****, 1999) When viewing the situation in


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