Compared with harder drugs as cocaine and heroin, marijuana, also named as cannabis or hemp, is considered as a soft drug with less addiction and harm. In the 19th century, it was one of the most important crops in the American continent to the common wealth (Newton, 2013, p.32), but it has been banned to grow in most countries since the 20th century (Newton, 2013, p.45). Given the clamour for “decriminalization” of the personal possession of small amounts of marijuana is growing (Single, 2013, p.456) and the problem of pushing drugs is exacerbated in sight, the proposal of legalizing this illicit drug has been disputed among the governments. This essay tries to weigh up the pros and cons of legalizing marijuana from the perspective of the
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Indeed, notwithstanding the medical application of some drugs, marijuana is not the same case. Susan Bro, an agency spokeswoman, has said to The New York Times(Harris, 2006)that “smoked marijuana has no currently accepted or proven medical use in the United States and is not an approved medical treatment.” Before legalizing marijuana, medical researchers and doctors are calling for more rigorous data support and studies in this field (Joffe & Yancy, 2004,p.636).
As to the sound development of the youth, legalizing marijuana my bring side influence to them. Adolescence is the transition period when the youth are not mature enough and are easily misled. As marijuana is sold around the streets, they may be seduced to taste it at first and then become addicted to it. A major new study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has provided objective evidence that teenagers who “used marijuana heavily and continued through adulthood cause a significant drop in IQ between the ages of 13 and 38”( Volkow, 2012). When truly hooked, they will go to any lengths to satisfy their craving for the drug, and gradually slide into the criminal abyss. In that sense, the youth as the future and hope of a society, legalizing marijuana is not in the least favorable to them.
From what has been discussed above, legalizing marijuana is indeed double-edged. On the one hand, it will bring economic return to the government and is contributive to