The Legalization of Marijuana Essay

2384 Words Jun 4th, 2011 10 Pages
The Legalization of Marijuana – A Compelling Case for a Misunderstood Plant

Abstract
The prohibition of marijuana has sparked heated debates for years about its effects on the human body, its medicinal properties, and its effect on society; just to name a few. Although many are against the legalization of marijuana, this paper will argue that the legalization of marijuana is warranted. It will prove this by weighing marijuana’s effects on the body when smoked against the effects on the body when drinking alcohol and smoking tobacco, by presenting research facts on its medicinal qualities, and showing how the prohibition ultimately contributes to organized crime.

The Legalization of Marijuana – A Compelling Case for a Misunderstood
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Excessive drinking also increases chances of being injured in accidents. Alcohol plays a role in about 60% of fatal burn injuries, drownings, and homicides; 50% of severe trauma injuries and sexual assaults; and 40% of fatal motor vehicle crashes, suicides, and fatal falls (NIAAA, 2011). The NIAAA also reports that 3 out of 10 adults drink more than the low-risk limit of four drinks a day for men and three drinks a day for women. Alcohol is widely accepted as a recreational pastime yet has many negative consequences. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (2011), the adverse effects of cannabis are overall less serious than those of alcohol, in terms of neuropsychological and physical effects, accidents and violence.

Long-Term Effects of Smoking Cigarettes

Tobacco use is by far the leading cause of preventable disease, disability, and death in the United States (National Institute on Drug Abuse, 2011). More deaths can be attributed to tobacco use than to alcohol, drugs, firearms, motor vehicle crashes, and HIV/AIDS combined (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2011). In the United States, 90% of lung cancer cases were from smoking cigarettes and 38,000 deaths per year are from secondhand
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