Essay: Legalization of Marijuana in Washington

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[. . .] The regulation of Marijuana will cause the drug price to fall, which may in turn cause a collapse in the drug industry, as well as the reduction of crimes in connection with drugs. By regulating and legalizing Marijuana, the inelasticity of its demand will not cause drug addiction to rise (Gerber 2004, 97). The decriminalization of Marijuana can offer the government a closer look at its users and much information on the extent of drug use, like what happens with alcohol consumption and the use of other prescription drugs.

It has been argued by a majority of people that Marijuana poses as a "gateway drug" (Khatapoush, and Hallfors 2004). This means that the legalization of marijuana can lead its users to other more dangerous drugs and will increase drug trafficking and drug abuse. This has been a case also with alcohol and tobacco where it is believed that the use and/or consumption of these products can cause individuals to want to try more extreme drugs and clouds their sense of judgment towards illicit substances (Khatapoush, and Hallfors 2004). This of course has yet to be proven because drug activity and crime rates in relation to drugs have lessened in countries who have experimented with the legalization of Marijuana. A very successful example of this is Amsterdam. The country enjoys its low crime rates, and the individuals in the country are able to exercise much of their free will.

There are a lot of moral issues in connection to the legalization of Marijuana (Ashton et al. 2005, 6). The state cannot be involved with the distribution of anything which a large number of the population considers to be immoral. However, the proper education on the positive effects of Marijuana can change this. Since Marijuana has a lot of medical benefits and it proves to do more good than harm to one's physiological self, then more would approve. It is because of the taboo label placed on Marijuana that many citizens believe it is a bad thing for the public. Though, as stated above, the use of Marijuana does not cause an individual to be involved in violent crimes.

The use of drugs has also been said to cause a rise in healthcare costs because of the harm it can cause to an individual and robs the user of any free will (Khatapoush, and Hallfors 2004). It is argued that a user of Marijuana cannot make informed decisions for him or herself because the drug takes away any ability for the user to think logically or make good judgments. However, the right to free will is within an individual, and the legalization of Marijuana will let people choose if he or she would want to take the risks for his or her own person. The government has no right to choose what an individual should do to him or herself and action should only be taken when a third party is harmed. With the legalization of Marijuana, the individual should be well aware of all the potential risks the drug can have on the human body, and this can be done with proper education on the drug which can only be administered with its legalization.

The legalization of Marijuana is more of an issue of individual rights since it has not been proven that it causes an individual to act violently or act in a way which can harm other people (Goode 1970, 211). There are numerous studies which have found many benefits of Marijuana, and the first step of legalizing its medical use shows that it has a lot of positive sides to it (Bock 2000, null7). The decriminalization of Marijuana can lead to the collapse of the drug industry, as well as being beneficial for taxpayers through the taxation on the drug. Marijuana can be legalized just as alcohol and tobacco are, with this comes a blanket of terms, and allows the government to regulate its use. No matter what, people are still going to use Marijuana, it is better to legalize it and have it under control than to prohibit it and have dealers selling it to whomever they please (Gerber 2004, 49). The legalization of Marijuana has more positive effects than people want to hear.

References

Alan W. Bock, The Politics of Medical Marijuana (Santa Ana, CA: Seven Locks Press, 2000), null7, http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=98432636.

Erich Goode, The Marijuana Smokers (New York: Basic Books, 1970), 211, http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=99522922

Erich Goode, ed., Marijuana (Chicago: Atherton, 1969), 16, http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=96962183.

James S. Frideres, and Lyle G. Warner, "Attitude-Action Relationships," Canadian Review of Sociology and Anthropology 17, no. 2 (1980): 109, http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=95707042.

Michael C. Ashton et al., "Chapter 1 Two Dimensions of Political Attitudes and Their Individual Difference Correlates: a Cross-Cultural Perspective," in Culture and Social Behavior ed. Richard M. Sorrentino, Dov Cohen, James M. Olson, and Mark P. Zanna (Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2005), 6, http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=110695902.

Rudolph J. Gerber, Legalizing Marijuana: Drug Policy Reform and Prohibition Politics (Westport, CT: Praeger, 2004), iii, http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=111696203.

Shereen Khatapoush, and Denise Hallfors, "Sending the Wrong Message": Did Medical Marijuana Legalization in California Change Attitudes about and Use of Marijuana?," Journal of Drug Issues 34, no. 4 (2004), http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=5035542644.

Stiley and Cikuvitch, Legal Joint, Washington Marijuana Law (n.d.), http://www.legaljoint.net/state_by_state/Washington.asp?p=Washington&state=55&mmj =2#mandatory

Thorvald T. Brown, The Enigma of Drug Addiction (Springfield, Ill.: Charles C. Thomas, 1961), pp. 61, 62. [END OF PREVIEW]

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Legalization of Marijuana in Washington.  (2010, October 28).  Retrieved March 26, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/legalization-marijuana-washington/3043034

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"Legalization of Marijuana in Washington."  Essaytown.com.  October 28, 2010.  Accessed March 26, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/legalization-marijuana-washington/3043034.