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


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Legalization of Marijuana

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Marijuana is one ***** the most popular recreational drugs in the United States, exceeded in 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 smoked during the last year (NORML, 1999)."

According to R. Keith Stroup, Esq., the executive director of National Organization for ***** Reform of Marijuana Laws (*****, 1999), "Like ***** Americans, the vast majority of these millions ***** marijuana smokers are otherw*****e 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. ***** acknowledged having smoked ***** at some ***** in their lives.

***** legalization of marijuana has been a topic ***** controversy for sever*****l years. Many proponents of the drug argue ***** marijuana should be legalized ***** both medical and recreational use. Others say that it should at least ***** 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 ********** in favor of legalizing the drug. The paper will present six valid reasons for legalizing the drug, as well ***** background statements ***** support these arguments.

Reasons for Legalizing *****

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

********** 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, ***** 285,000 (Turnpike.net, 1999)" Although marijuana is more ***** of a drug than tobacco, it is also used much less than tobacco (University of Michigan-Dearbourne, 1999). The average ***** smoker smokes about one pack of cigarettes per day, which is ***** twenty *****, while the ***** marijuana ***** smokes about two joints a day. Greg Norr*****, the author of the essay "The Issues at H*****: Legaliz*****ion of Marijuana," says (University of Michigan-Dearbourne, *****):

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

In comparison to alcohol, marijuana is the lesser detriment." (***** of *****, 1999) When viewing the situation in

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