Gov’t should legalize marijuana

Picture this: It’s your 50th birthday party. While the kids play outside, you and the other adults talk about politics and family moments on the front porch. Seems boring, but then Uncle Lester reaches into

Picture this: It’s your 50th birthday party. While the kids play outside, you and the other adults talk about politics and family moments on the front porch. Seems boring, but then Uncle Lester reaches into his pocket and rolls a joint, and nobody gives him a second glance.

Hey, it could happen, and if current trends in marijuana support continue, it will.

Thirty-nine-year-old Angel Reich of California got the ball rolling a few weeks ago. Reich, mother of two, suffers from many terminal conditions, such as a brain tumor and a seizure disorder. Reich says that she doesn’t experience “euphoria” when she smokes, and that she only smokes to ease her pain. She also claims that if she were to stop smoking, she would die. Reich, along with Diane Monson, has filed a lawsuit for their right to grow marijuana.

This is the first time the fight for marijuana has been taken to the national stage. Previously, medical marijuana laws were under the jurisdiction of individual states. If Reich and Monson win their case, however, it will mean the federal government officially recognizes that marijuana has potential to treat diseases. The case could also have heavy implications on the pharmaceutical industry if the federal government prevents a patient from receiving medicine, which has been proven to aid treatment. However, I think the big picture here is that America’s attitude on drug prohibition is changing and heading in the right direction. By looking at some of the evidence from Nov. 2, many Americans agree with me.

Last month, over 20 measures were on local ballots that would loosen some of the restrictions on marijuana, and a whopping 17 of them passed. Many were related to Reich’s case and medical marijuana, but a few were related to the criminal aspect of the war on drugs. For example, one town in Missouri lightened possession penalties from a year’s jail time to a $250 dollar fine. Oakland, California legislators regulated marijuana to be of the “lowest priority” for local law enforcement and called for Oakland to urge the state to stop the prosecution of adults for the private use of marijuana. In effect, the ruling marks a stepping stone to legalization. Alaska even tried to legalize the drug entirely, but with only 44 percent supporting the measure, it failed. The very fact that a conservative state like Alaska attempted to legalize marijuana shows that some citizens are tired of our ineffective drug policies.

Americans are growing weary of the money and jail space wasted on the war on drugs; a war many believe has its roots in racism and infringement upon civil liberties, with “zero-tolerance” policies that can have marijuana users serving more jail time than those convicted of manslaughter.

By legalizing marijuana, the government could tax the drug and turn something that costs them so much into a revenue generator. With marijuana being illegal, there is also a mass black market in place to supply the drug, and of course the profit potential is enormous. Thus, wars are waged on our streets over control of territory and supply, leaving the common citizen at an economic disadvantage. If the government were in charge of regulation, not only would this black market disappear, but the drug itself wouldn’t be laced with any dangerous chemicals and would have to go through government testing procedures. These policies would put money in the pockets of America through taxes, and it would keep our streets safer. I doubt the pillars of society will crumble if cannabis is ultimately legalized.

Aside from Election Day, a change was documented years ago by a CNN poll that supports the idea that Americans are slowly softening up on the legalization of marijuana. In 1983, 73 percent of Americans believed marijuana should remain illegal, but by 2002 that number fell to 59 percent. The fact that 80 percent of those surveyed thought marijuana should be used for medicinal purposes shows that citizens believe there is some upside to at least partially legalizing the drug.

In 30 years, a few things could happen: The Eagles may have a Super Bowl championship or two, George Bush VIII could be president, and you could have one hell of a 50th birthday party.

Sean Blanda can be reached at


  1. yes i think it is a great idea to legalize it. will cost u alot less money and time trying to catch us..

  2. Marijuana has always been taught to be a harmful drug and that it can kill brain cells and cause a lot of problems in school and now our country wants to legalize the now illegal substance. Personally I think this is a good idea in a lot of ways. Yes, Marijuana is a considered a drug that affects the brains ability to produce dopamine, but it’s also a good medication to help cancer patient’s deal with the symptoms of chemo therapy or people with severe MS who don’t want to risk being exposed addictive as pain killers.
    California has already legalized the use of “medical Marijuana” for cancer patients and patients suffering from major depression. “Angel Reich of California suffers from many terminal conditions, such as a brain tumor and a seizure disorder. Reich says that she doesn’t experience “euphoria” when she smokes and that she only smokes to ease her pain” (Admin). People have come to realize that Marijuana is not as addicting as they thought it was. This is why Some doctors prefer to replace narcotics like Percicet, and Codeine that are highly addictive and can be dangerous if consumed with alcohol or overdosed. You can’t overdose on marijuana and there haven’t been any recorded deaths from marijuana other then than things like car wrecks from smoking and driving. The only side affects from in jesting Marijuana is Being paranoid, forgetting things, and possibly lung cancer which in most cases can be looked over compared to the terminal conditions the patient already has.
    People are also saying that is would be good for the economy not only for selling it but for all the millions of dollars we could save from not having to prosecute so many people for using it. “In total, in prosecuting and policing individuals with regards to marijuana, between $7 billion and $10 billion was spent — and that’s just last year” (Stevens). This would also mean more room in our prisons to put people in who need to go. Think about it the courts will prosecute and arrest a man for dealing marijuana, but they’ll let a sex offender walk because there isn’t enough room in the prisons. In my opinion if Marijuana was legalized a lot of violence would stop, and I wouldn’t want to have my family living next door to a sex offender because they didn’t have enough room, id rather live beside a pot head then a sex offender any day in my book. Think about all of the real criminals we could put away and put an ease to some of the violence.
    The one thing that could pull America out of the recession is the one thing that causes so much violence. I cant get over the fact that everyone has a problem with it but if you look at how much money is spent on preventing it, not only could we save that money from legalizing Marijuana but, we could make a profit by taxing it and selling it. I think it’s really funny how you’re taught in grammar school how Marijuana is dangerous and then you get a little bit older and people start talking about it being medicine and becoming legalized. It makes you think about how much money we could have saved from all these organizations that talk about how bad marijuana is. It makes me wonder if those ads would still come on the television after Marijuana is legalized or would the government stop it to make a profit. Lets be real they weren’t in a hurry to stop people from smoking cigarettes when they found out it was causing cancer.
    Marijuana is not exactly something your kids should be taught to smoke but, in my opinion if cigarettes and alcohol can be legal, then I think marijuana can be too. Nicotine and alcohol are both addicting but people do it everyday and they have rules and limitations that must be followed. I think if marijuana is legalized with the proper guidelines would it be ok to sell. People make there own choices about how they want to live if you chose to pick up that cigarette or that ice cold beer then it’s your choice not anyone else’s. Just because its legalized doesn’t mean everyone has to do it it’s your own choice if you choose to or not. What gets me is people will say well it’s bad for the children to know about it but you’ll turn around and let them watch a cartoon with a little yellow boy who’s about their age smoking a cigarette and getting choked every other scene by his father (how’s that for educational television). I think that if people want to judge marijuana being legalized or not then they should at least be fare about it. I’m sure Angel Reich of California wouldn’t mind going back to having piercing headaches so you could hide the “M word” away from you children.

    Admin. December 4, 2004. “Gov’t should legalize marijuana”. violent_crime_731.htm. Accessed: March 23, 2009

    Stevens L, Amanda. “Legalizing marijuana allows police to focus on violent crimes”. Accessed: March 23, 2009

    “this is a reaserch paper i did for my school it was my opinion of it being legalized my aunt suffers from cancer and can barly stand to get out of bed some mornings and i think this would help”

  3. I already have my very own personal exposure to burning cannabis, and no matter how many times folks say “it’s beneficial for this purpose” and “ideal with regard to that”, Let me tell people that it nearly harmed my life man! Look, I am aware there are people who are able to merely up and stop smoking, but there are many other people that definitely have the most difficult time trying to give up smoking pot. The main downside to being dependent on bud is that the craving is really a mental one, not physical.

  4. Thanks for ones marvelous posting! I quite enjoyed reading it, you are a great author.I will be sure to bookmark your blog and definitely will come back in the future. I want to encourage you to definitely continue your great writing, have a nice morning!

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