I'm a non-smoker (of cigarettes), but I approve of the legalization of marijuana. Further, legalizing/decriminalization of marijuana is no more unfair to those who don't smoke weed than the legalization of alcohol is unfair to those who don't drink.
Here is why weed should be made legal:
1) It's not an unsafe drug. I read a study once that there were some like 23 fatal marijuana overdoses nationwide over a period of 25 years. More people die in the United States from accidentally overdosing on aspirin than marijuana overdoes. And, every year hundreds of thousands of people die from nicotine-related cancers and a couple hundred thousand die from alcohol-induced accidents, violence and diseases. Moreover, unlike alcohol, which makes many of its abusers very violent, marijuana actually calms people down, makes them mellow. Also, marijuana is far less addictive than alcohol or tobacco. You have to smoke a LOT of weed to get addicted to THC. And, don't forget, there seems to be some health benefits to moderate intake of natural THC, just as their are health benefits to moderate intake of alcohol. Cancer patients and others report that they get better when smoking weed.
2) It's only a gateway drug because it is illegal. The same dealers that sell marijuana also sell crack, powder cocaine, heroin and meth. Since they can make more money off the hard drugs than they can off weed, it only makes sense for them to try to convert their customers from pot to harder drugs. However, if we made pot legal, we would take away these customers and have a good chance of decreasing the number of hard drug users. And, hard drugs, such as cocaine, heroin and meth should remain illegal since they destroy the user and, in the process, cause issues in society.
3) We spend too much money enforcing marijuana laws. Think about all the time law enforcement officials spend enforcing marijuana laws. All the arrests and all the missed time from work and other things that arrested users have to go through. Think about the numbers of people housed in our jails and prisons for no other reason than they had marijuana on them. Think about the court resources that we are forced to spend on marijuana violators, including public defenders. Studies show that the fight against marijuana, which is less harmful than alcohol, costs this nation $10 billion to $15 billion a year. That's money that could be spent better.
4) We miss the taxing revenue that legalized weed would provide. Just as some people make their own beer and wine for personal use, some would grow their own weed and still be outside the tax structure. However, most would purchase from legal outlets. These purchases can be taxed. You are looking at billions of dollars in new revenues, money that is currently being given to drug dealers.
5) You are looking at job creation from legalizing marijuana. You will be moving people from illegal black markets to the legal market. Stores and other distributors will have to hire clerks to sell weed and the paraphernalia needed to smoke pot. Paraphernalia sales can be and will be taxed. The legal income from selling weed can also be taxed.
6) Currently, marijuana is unregulated. When you purchase a nickle or dime bag of pot from your friendly corner dealer, you really have no idea what you are purchasing. You don't know if you are buying Acapulco Gold or oregano. You don't know what substances, such as Drano, have been added to the pot to give it an extra kick. If you legalize weed, you can regulate it, since you can't regulate something that is illegal.
7) Finally, legalizing marijuana will open up markets to hemp products, including ethanol. Hemp is one of the best raw materials to produce ethanol. Again, we are talking about job creation and tax revenues.
So, reviewing all these items, we can say legalizing pot is far from being unfair to nonsmokers, but is actually fair since it brings economic benefits to them....
Answered By: Monika - 1/24/2010