Should Marijuana Be Legalized?

1349 Words Sep 13th, 2015 6 Pages
The legalization of marijuana has been a debate that has been going on for the past decade. Many Americans (about 80 percent surveyed) do believe in the legalization while others disagree. With the correct facts in place, it is easy to prove that the legalization of marijuana is a huge benefit to the American people and those who disagree are disagreeing for the wrong reasons. One reason it should be legalized is marijuana can be used for medical purposes, others say it can help lower the debt in America by taxing marijuana. Many of these arguments favoring marijuana are outlined in this paper. In Issue 17: Should Marijuana Be Legalized defended by Ethan A. Nadelmann, he shows the many benefits of legalizing marijuana. One being, how costly it is to criminalize the usage or possession of marijuana. Did you know, police currently make about 700,000 arrests per year for marijuana, with 87% of these arrests only being for possession of the drug? The amount of these arrests is almost the same as those of cocaine and heroin.
We spend about $10-15 billion in costs to arrest those 700,000 people and house those ‘criminals’ in jail. With that being said, in Alabama, people who are convicted of even possessing marijuana at least 3 times are sentenced to 15 years of life in prison which leads to 100,000 Americans in jail just for one marijuana offense. That is roughly $14 million just for Alabama alone to house the ‘criminals’. That is a lot of money just for a simple criminal…

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