Should Marijuana Be Legalized?

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In the United States, there has been a long history of arguing over states’ rights and federal rights due to the vagueness in the language of the Constitution. This has led to different interpretations of laws by those in government positions and continues to be an issue especially when state and federal governments have conflicting laws. Currently, almost every state has legalized the medical use of marijuana to some degree, and 8 states and the District of Columbia have legalized its recreational use. The federal government, however, still states that marijuana is a Schedule 1 Drug. Its status means that the DEA still believes it has no medical use and has high potential for abuse, holding the same status as heroin and LSD. This …show more content…

The federal law should change so that the law represents what the people want, but until then the state laws should not contradict the federal law that should have the most power. The federal government can take issue from a different angle of the Constitution as well. The federal government has a history of relating almost all commerce to the Commerce Clause in the first article of the Constitution. The sale of marijuana can fall under this same clause because, even though it is not transported over state lines or sold from one state to another, a large number of people cross state lines to buy marijuana or to cross back over once they have bought it. The federal government can use this to regulate the sale of marijuana within states. The federal government is able to regulate what states laws are by withholding grant money. There are a few types of grants the federal government gives to states to fund different sectors of the state government. Although the federal government cannot cut all funding to the states, they can require certain laws to be upheld in exchange for the money. For example, when the drinking age was nationally changed from 18 to 21, no states had to comply. The federal government incentivized the states to raise the minimum age by withholding money for highway repair (Department of Health and Human Services). Since the money was given in a categorical grant, it was

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