Marijuana. When we first hear this word we think of it being illegal and the drug prohibition. Well, that's not how it should be. In fact many wise men are against prohibition and I quote, "A Prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded," Abraham Lincoln, 1840. Also Albert Einstein who Time declared Man of the Century said this about prohibition, "For nothing is more destructive of respect for the government and the law of the land than passing laws which cannot be enforced." By just these quotes allow is enough argument to legalize marijuana. About 70 or so years ago, there was a law that said no one could sell beer, wine, or whiskey because these drinks had alcohol in them. Alcohol can make people get drunk or sick. People were then told that they die from it. So, our government deemed it a good idea to pass a law against alcohol. It was called "Prohibition." And obviously that didn't have much success.
There are many reasons for having cannabis legalized. One of the many reasons would be how we (the taxpayers) would save billions of dollars a year if drug enforcement was lessened due to the should-be legal drug. As of 1993 on just law enforcement alone of drugs the United States spent 13 billion dollars. If we were to legalize cannabis we would save about 3.3 billion dollars thus reducing the cost of drug enforcement down to around 10 or so billion dollars. I'm sure the average American would prefer those funds and resources diverted to something more important, such as CIA or the FBI. Imagine all the other important crimes ATF (Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms) could be cracking down on rather then this phony "Drug War." I'm sure your wondering where I got these figures of the cost of our drug enforcement; I received the information off of the federal financial analysis of legalization that came from Theodore R. Vallance, Former Chief of the Planning Branch of the National Institutes of Mental Health.
Just think how much manpower is wasted on frivolous drug crimes. While agents of our many alphabet organizations are chasing down heavy marijuana sellers we divert our time and money on the wrong problems. If this country, the mighty U.S. of A wants to destroy Columbian drug lords and make them powerless strike them were it hurts the most, their income. With marijuana being legal the price of cannabis lowers dramatically and the drug cartels lose all their power due to no money. The only reason why the drug lords are powerful is because of the United States branding it illegal and by doing so made the worth of hemp sky rockets on the black market.
By passing legislation to legalize cannabis it would also free up our already overcrowded jail system and save us all on taxpaying. In 1998 the Chicago Tribune researched into how much it costs Illinois taxpayers for the jailing of people convicted of drug crimes related to marijuana. It costs 25,621 dollars to house one criminal for a drug crime per year. Meanwhile the average Illinois resident only pays around 1,170 dollars worth of yearly state personal income tax. That means that it would take you and 20 of your fellow residents to pay for one person serving a jail sentence for a drug crime. Now, if that isn't ridiculous I don't know what is. NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws) reports that in the state of California alone that marijuana accounts for 15,000 felony crimes costing the state 100 million dollars. My fellow Americans, if this is the cost of drug enforcement of marijuana on one state out of 50 just envision how much it is costing our country on the whole.
Another thing wrong with how our country regarding drug usage is how we are going about reducing drug offences via the D.A.R.E.(Drug Abuse Resistance Education) program. By educating our youth on the effects of drugs are we really stopping drug use or just making our children more aware of them? The program has good principles and ideas don't get me wrong but it's just an incredibly naive way of thinking and it doesn't hold true most often, particularly in today's society.
Another good cause to legalize marijuana would be for it's medical effects. Fourteen percent of all blindness is a result from glaucoma, which is a progressive lost of vision. Cannabis smoking would benefit 90 % of glaucoma patients and is two to three times as effective as any current medicines. Furthermore, cannabis use has no toxic side effects to the liver and kidneys, nor is there any danger of the occasional sudden death syndromes associated with legal pharmaceutical glaucoma drugs. Also lung cancer can be helped by cannabis use. Marijuana smoke effectively dilates the airways of the lungs; the bronchi, and opens them to allow more oxygen into the lungs. It is also the best natural dilator for the airways of the lungs; the bronchial tubes, making cannabis the best overall bronchial dilator for 80 % of the population. These are 2 of the many helpful medical effects of marijuana use.
Last but not least is that the government can benefit in more ways then just saving taxpayers money if legalization of marijuana was passed. What the government should do if they were smart (yes, I realize that kind of is an oxymoron) should be that they legalize marijuana and have corporations produce it and sell it. Besides it being extremely safer then buying it off Joe Smith on the street corner with who knows what could be mixed in with it and isn't a quality product. The government also could tax marijuana sales if they forced the corporations into needing FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approval. The taxes alone from marijuana sales would aid the government in more ways then ever before. The heavy sales revenue of cannabis alone would stimulate the economy for years. For these reasons and the one's mentioned prior are the rationale for the legalization of marijuana for the free people of the United States of America.