Assignment number Due Date The Land of the Free, and… Blazed? Since the day he was born, ten year old Colorado resident, Kaki Jackson has suffered from a rare form of epilepsy that causes him to have up to one thousand uncontrollable seizures a day, a majority of which leaving him violently convulsing and unable to breathe. After ten long years and seventeen different trial medications later, Saki’s doctor offered his parents one last attempt at giving their child a somewhat normal life, a medical prescription for marijuana.
The strain of marijuana Kaki now takes is called cannonball, and since taking his very first dose of the strand, Kaki has been completely seizure free. But what if Kaki did not live in Colorado where marijuana is legalized? What if instead, he lived in New York? There are thousands of kids Just like Kaki that suffer from illnesses that could possibly be treated with the drug, but if they do not live in a state where marijuana is legalized, are they simply out of luck?
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These are the type of questions that spark the debate of the legalization of marijuana, and what makes the question to legalize or not to legalize one of the cost popular topics in the United States. There are many arguments that can be made supporting the legalization of marijuana throughout the country. First, it is important to remember that marijuana is not as harmful as other legal drugs, such as tobacco and alcohol. Think of the number of people that statistically die each year from alcohol poisoning, car accidents caused by alcohol, and other events related to being under the influence.
Think of the amount of people that die from lung cancer each year, a disease directly caused by smoking cigarettes and using tobacco. The numbers are in the millions, yet oh can walk to any gas station in the country and pick up a pack of cigarettes and a bottle of vodka at any time of the day. There are zero documented cases of people overdosing on marijuana, for the fact that it is almost impossible to do so, yet it remains illegal. On the contrary, there are many beneficial qualities to marijuana.
Marijuana use, as seen in the case of Kaki Jackson, can help control and even stop epileptic seizures. It is used to treat the eye disease glaucoma, to decrease anxiety, to ease the painful symptoms of an illness known as multiple sclerosis and even help people going through chemotherapy Unifier Welsh, Business Insider). Another thing to consider in the argument for the legalization of marijuana is the idea discussed in article “Wake up and Smell the Marijuana” that “the legalization of marijuana will actually help solve the problems of our youth, not create one”.
Where the author argues that a lot of the time teenagers experiment with marijuana as a way of rebelling. If marijuana is legalized, it will not have that same “allure” as the article states. It would be the same as buying a water bottle, or gum or any other item oh can find at your local grocery store. The author believes that legalization might take the glamour and excitement out of trying marijuana in the first place, and the use of it among kids and teenagers would actually go down, instead of shoot up like most people think will happen if marijuana is legalized.
Another idea argued in the article is that if kids that already use marijuana regularly, about 40% according to Business Insider, had legal access to it, they actually might not use other more harmful drugs such as tobacco and alcohol as much as they do now. Drinking under he age of twenty one is common, but it is still illegal. Honestly speaking, why would anyone choose to do something that is illegal to cause themselves to feel something that can be achieved by something that is not illegal? Lawmakers themselves are asking themselves this question.
The economic side of this debate serves as a final argument for the legalization of marijuana, in that that making marijuana legal would lead to a large amount of government regulation. What does that mean? Firstly, government regulated marijuana would be cleaner. A lot of times marijuana bought and sold on the street s “cut” or mixed with small amounts of other drugs, which is incredibly dangerous. The marijuana provided by the government would be regulated and “pure”, making it safer for consumers in general.
Not only would the product be safer but the distribution centers that would be built as a result would provide citizens with a safe place to go to buy their marijuana, rather than doing so on the street in dangerous areas. Legalizing marijuana would also prove to have beneficial effects for society as a whole in the fact that making the drug legal would simultaneously make it taxable, ND like all things taxable, that money could be used to aid very important things such as education, healthcare and other national issues. Additionally, the legalization of marijuana would create tens and thousands of Jobs for the American people.
It could undoubtedly give our economy the boost it needs, and help reduce the unemployment rate of our country. Even though there is a strong argument for the legalization of marijuana, there is just as strong of an argument for why it should not be legalized. Marijuana at the end of the day, is still a drug, being that is effects your ability to make rational sections, and your overall state of mind, and on a moral level, we should not give the public, especially young adults whose brains have not yet completely developed, access to drugs that have any negative side effect.
According to the Official Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, studies have shown that the emotional stress caused by withdrawal from marijuana is linked to the “corporation-releasing factor” which is the same brain chemical that has been linked to anxiety and stress during opiate, alcohol, and cocaine withdrawal. It is also proven that the release of famine (the chemical substance in your brain that makes you happy when smoking) is the same chemical that reinforces dependence on other addictive drugs.
An article by National Academy of Neurophysiology by Natalie Rabid also states that there is research that supports the theory that marijuana use and mental health problems are related when dealing with the teenage age group. I think the strongest argument there is against the legalization of marijuana, and why I personally side with not legalizing it, is that in a perfect society, nobody would buses the new freedom to easily obtain marijuana.
The crime rate would go down because there would be less drug dealers in business and on our streets, the economy would surge as a result of the high taxation the government would surely place on the weed, and the nation would overall be much happier, healthier, and safer than it is now. But that’s Just it. We don’t live in a perfect society. And that is the fundamental issue of why we simply cannot allow the legalization of a drug.
No matter how tight the regulation is, no matter how hard the government tries, there loud still be many people that would abuse and take advantage of the system in a negative way and these possibilities far outweigh the good legalizing marijuana would bring. We cannot make laws and policies based off the society we want, we need to create them to deal with the society we have. And that is the main reason as to why I do not believe the legalization of marijuana will do us as a society, any amount of good. That does not mean, however, that every form of marijuana should be completely banned.
It is scientifically proven that the right strand and dosage of Arizona can have amazing effects on the lives of people who are greatly suffering from a variety of illnesses. I spoke briefly to a family friend who occasionally uses his prescription for medicinal marijuana when his arthritis flares up, and he directly stated that “it helps ease the pain immensely. I wouldn’t do it on a daily basis, or make it a regular part of my routine, but the times where I have a long day at work and regular over the counter pain medicine isn’t quite working, it helps a great deal”.
It is for that reason that I strongly believe that we should not go as far as to impolitely legalize its use, but for healing purposes, should lighten up on the strictness of our laws towards marijuana. Once again we revisit the question of what will happen to kids like Kaki Jackson. For right now, there is no clear answer, but who knows. Maybe one day things will be different. Maybe one day they will not have uproot their lives to move to a marijuana friendly state. Maybe Just maybe, they will be living in one. Works Cited Lain Coffee. Legalization of Marijuana: Potential Impact on Youth.