The debate on legalization of marijuana
has been ...
Should the federal government of the United States legalize the recreational use of marijuana?
The debate on legalization of marijuana
has been ongoing over the past decades but has never been this intense
especially with the support it is receiving not just in the United States but
among some other countries such as Canada and Mexico. The marijuana
legalization debate has been a global issue discussed over the years, and some
countries have legalized the medicinal and recreational use of marijuana.
However, the federal government of the United States remains unmoved by the
increased pressure to review the laws (Femer). On
the other hand, a number of States in America have been considering their state
laws and legalizing medical use of Marijuana with others such as Colorado,
Washington, and Oregon legalizing it for recreational use. It is the
initiatives by these states in 2012 that has sparked the debate further with
arguments for and against the legalization of Marijuana. In as much as the laws
contravene with the federal statutes, the Obama administration has not been
reactive to such states, and this could be attributed to the rising popularity
of the drug. It is, therefore, necessary that the federal government in the
United States legalize the recreational use of Marijuana.
In support of the legalization of
marijuana, the pros to the debate argue that in America, marijuana legalization
is inevitable it is just a question of when it will take place (Femer). The USA is a democracy and, therefore, the
majority takes the day when it comes to making any amendments to laws.
Therefore, the legalization of marijuana for recreational use is inevitable in
the country especially with the research indicating that the 68% of millennial support
its legalization and over 53% of the US population support its legalization
(Pew Research Centre, 2015). Bearing in mind that the United States Census
Bureau indicated that the millennials represent approximately one-quarter of
the population and therefore, even if the federal government drags in
legalizing the drug with such numbers from millennials it would add more
pressure to the political elite to bow down to pressure.
If marijuana is legalized, controlled
and regulated properly, it would lead to more benefits than evils. Such
benefits include reduced drug-related crimes associated with the illegal
business (Femer). It would further increase the
revenue collection for the States as well as save on the budget allocations to
fight drug-related crimes while at the same time reducing the pressure on law
enforcement agencies. Furthermore, the business would operate as a commercial
entity like the Tobacco and Alcohol industries and also lead to better care and
control as well mitigation laws that protect the users better than having to
use it while in hiding (Femer).
In opposition to the legalization of
marijuana, critics cite the fact that Marijuana brings in revenue but then
would end up spending more on social expenses among others. In as much as there
would be regulation and also policy controls on the use and limitations of
marijuana especially on roads, it would mean that there be another revenue
allocation on dealing with such crime (Office of National Drug Control Policy).
Therefore, it would not lead to many sources of income and may also not ease
off the pressure on the law enforcers as they would have to monitor those that
contravene the marijuana bylaws that will have to be instituted. However,
marijuana has been illegal for decades, but the marijuana related deaths have
still been witnessed on the roads and also in drug-related crimes (Femer). There is, therefore, the need for its
legalization so as to institute controls that eliminate the illegal trade
attributed to the majority of the deaths.
Marijuana is also a drug like any other
and. Therefore, its overuse can lead to some health issues as well as addiction
among some individuals. In as much as it is less addictive than other drugs
such as alcohol and tobacco, legalizing it would be an added social and health
menace in society. Furthermore, there are indications that its legalization
would increase the drug users (Office of National Drug Control Policy). The supporters
of its legalization cite the fact that the number of marijuana users is growing
every day especially among the millennials even before its legalization.
Moreover, the structures and policies that would be put in place would help the
users to make informed decisions on whether to use it or not and not just
follow myths and misconceptions as is the case when it is illegal (Femer).
In conclusion, no legal framework does
not have loopholes for some consequences in any democracy and therefore, a law
should be one that is supported by the majority, and it exudes more benefits
than evil. Furthermore, fighting Marijuana while illegal has proven impossible
over the past decades and hence, there is a need to try a fresh approach.
Therefore, necessary that the federal government of the United States legalizes
the recreational use of Marijuana.