The Legalization of Marijuana Essay

2369 Words May 11th, 2011 10 Pages
The Legalization of Marijuana – A Compelling Case for a Misunderstood Plant

Abstract
The prohibition of marijuana has sparked heated debates for years about its effects on the human body, its medicinal properties, and its effect on society; just to name a few. Although many are against the legalization of marijuana, this paper will argue that the legalization of marijuana is warranted. It will prove this by weighing marijuana’s effects on the body when smoked against the effects on the body when drinking alcohol and smoking tobacco, by presenting research facts on its medicinal qualities, and showing how the prohibition ultimately contributes to organized crime.

The Legalization of Marijuana – A Compelling Case for a Misunderstood
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Alcohol use can be safe if consumed in moderation for most people within the legal drinking age; however, according to medical experts, there is no safe amount of tobacco to smoke (American Medical Association, 2010). Some hospitals are even implementing new policies that ban hiring new employees that smoke. The overall effort is to encourage people to quit smoking and take up a healthier lifestyle.

Short-Term Effects of Smoking Marijuana

The effects that marijuana has on the human body are still heavily debatable as they are difficult to evaluate. However, the National Institute of Drug Abuse (2011), report that the short-term effects of smoking marijuana include euphoria, distorted perceptions, memory impairment, difficulty thinking and solving problems, and sometimes accentuation of anxiety. Research on the long-term effects of smoking cannabis has yielded inconsistent results as the effects noted are too subtle for reliable statistics (NIDA, 2011). Smoking marijuana is said to be addictive, however this has yet to be proven. It is more realistic to say that it is psychologically addictive due to its “mind expansion” effect and ability to remove stress quickly. Researchers have renewed their interest, in the past few decades, in the medicinal properties of marijuana and have issued statements in support of further research and development.

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