Marijuana Legalization

In: Social Issues

Submitted By jbecker78
Words 1233
Pages 5
Marijuana Legalization No matter your opinion regarding marijuana legalization, the tide is beginning to move in that direction. Marijuana use has become a topic of controversy over the last few years. Support and opposition have come from all angles. Some believe legalizing marijuana will lead to higher usage by youths. Yet others argue these rates are higher than ever despite the fact that it is currently illegal in most states. What we can agree on is the costs incurred by the United States of over a billion dollars a year to incarcerate people for marijuana-related offenses. (alternet.org, 2007) Maybe it is time we look a little closer at the effects of legalization and the tax revenue created when this substance is regulated. At the federal level, the DEA classifies all drugs based on medical use and dependency potential. Currently, marijuana is listed as a Schedule 1 narcotic. This class is defined as having no known medical use and a high potential for abuse. The Controlled Substance Act regulates drugs based on this schedule. Schedule 1 drugs are illegal in any form. (United States Drug Enforcement Administration) Between 1996 and 2014, 23 states and the District of Columbia changed their laws regarding marijuana despite federal mandates. (ProCon.org, 2014) These changes allow for the medical use of marijuana when under the supervision of a licensed physician. Each state’s laws differ in the amount that can be “prescribed”, but all of them allow its use in some form for various ailments. In 1996, California voters blazed new trails when Proposition 215 garnered 56% of the vote. This proposition allowed for the medical use of marijuana for certain medical conditions. (CA
Secretary of State, 1996) Some of these conditions include HIV/AIDS, cancer, glaucoma, and anorexia. The benefits have been substantial for California. Tax revenue from medical…...

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