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Should Marijuana Be Legalized?

Better Essays
Moliann Gross
Research Paper
February 15, 2017
Issues in Society:
Recreational Marijuana in The United States Marijuana is one of the most commonly used drugs in the United states, after alcohol and tobacco. It is currently considered a federally prohibited substance, but this has not halted the legalization of recreational marijuana on a statewide level. While marijuana is slowly becoming more recognized for it 's medicinal purposes it is also becoming more integrated into regular society and being used for leisure purposes. It is interesting to see the causes and effects of these changes on a state level and to observe the comparison of state and federal laws. It is also important to regard how legislature is reacting to these new
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The marijuana industry is one of the fastest paced industries in our current economy. It is creating quite the revenue in places that it is legal. “Recreational sales in Colorado 's first year (Jan. 1-Dec. 31, 2014) totaled $313 million.”2 Scholars believe that if cannabis is decriminalized on a federal level sales would reach $35 billion by 2020.2 At this time there are 23 States and the District of Columbia that endorse medical marijuana and eight states that are both medical and recreational.2 It must be noted that marijuana is decriminalized on a state level in these places, but is still federally prohibited. Marijuana is considered a schedule I drug, these are the drugs considered to be of the utmost threat. This creates a major problem for the dispensaries in the legalized states as they cannot use banks for their business practices.2 This makes it so that all of these shops are fully cash industries. This practice is “not safe, and they create accounting issues. And, from the regulatory perspective, if you want to be able to keep track of what 's happening with these businesses, then you don 't want them operating entirely in cash. [The government doesn 't] force any other industry to do that.”2 This leaves these industries almost unregulated as one cannot fully see every transaction or even the total revenue of these businesses. The government will need to decide the way that it would like to interact with these businesses
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