Should Marijuana Be Legalized?

1840 Words Oct 13th, 2014 8 Pages
Introduction (1 page)

The legalization of marijuana has been a widespread debate over the last decade. There are some people who believe that it should remain illegal (class 1), be legalized for medicinal use, or have it legal for both medicinal and recreational use. The correct choice on whether to legalize marijuana or to keep marijuana a criminalized drug is unknown. However, the main debate boils down to economic gains, prison reform, ending the war on drugs and overall citizen health.
Marijuana, also referred to as Cannabis or Hemp, was first criminalized in the 1970’s during Nixon’s war on drugs. It was classified as a schedule one drug, the most restrictive category of all drugs stating there to be absolutely no medical benefits from the drug. Later in 1970, public interest attorney R. Keith Stroup found the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) in Washington, D.C. (). Drug Enforcement Administration judge stated in 1988, that “Marijuana in its natural form is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man.” (). In 1991, San Francisco became the first city to pass an ordinance in favor of medical patients allowing access to medicinal cannabis, with a whopping 79% majority support rate. Many people think marijuana has been illegal for a long time so why should things change. However, for most of human history, cannabis has been ultimately legal. Actually, marijuana has been illegal for only 1% of the time since it has been…

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