“Mary Jane”; to Legalize or Not Essay

Submitted By primetime711
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“Mary Jane”; to Legalize or not
Michael Raupach
SOC 120 Introduction to Ethics and Social Responsibility
David Strand
September 24th, 2012

“Mary Jane” One of the biggest debates are society is involved in right now is the legalization of marijuana for recreational or medical use by American citizens. Marijuana also commonly known as Mary Jane, pot, weed, grass, ganja, and refer on the streets, and can be found easily in about any city across the country. With such an old history and much debate if the drug should be legalized, I feel that each state is taking the proper steps in gradually bringing medical marijuana for test trails to see how our society reacts. There will be much to learn from the states that already allow the use for citizens to enjoy the natural wonder of a God given flower. I will discuss some of the medical properties and positive effects that could occur if the drug was legalized along with a few negatives that would follow. Along with a few classical theories and examples on how I feel they apply with different aspects of the topic. Marijuana is the dried leaves and flowers of the hemp plant. A plant that was once used for a more industrially purpose to make rope, cloths, shoes, and other products used by our society, but with the invention of nylon a decrease of hemp has followed (Miller, 2003). Marijuana, in its natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man and should be up to you, the free citizen of America and not to the government to use or not to use. Its botanical name is cannabis sativa and has been used by humans for thousands of years, and has even been documented as far back as 2737 BC in China were they used it as a treatment for rheumatism, malaria, and absent-mindness among other things. The Spanish brought pot to America in 1545, and the English arrived with pot in Jamestown in 1611, where it became a major commercial crop, eventually replaced in the American south by cotton. It began mainstreaming as a recreational drug at the turn of the last century and by 1937 twenty seven
“Mary Jane” states passed anti-pot laws, (Miller, 2003) but in the last couple decades, a push to have the drug legalized for medical purpose has been in effect and working its way across the nation. The biggest reason in my opinion why marijuana should be legalized is the amount of money spent on the war against it. There is a great deal of time and money spent on trying to catch those who buy or sell marijuana, prosecuting them in court, and then housing them in jail. With all the punishments passed down and no signs of holding back from the so called criminals, our society will keep pushing this so called drug on the black market. If the government would make it legal they could eliminate all funds that go toward the war against it and use that money for something else like healthcare and on top would make a substantial profit that could be very beneficial to the money problems of this country. A study estimates that the average price of 0.5 grams of marijuana sold for $8.60 on the street, while its cost of production was only $1.70. That would be a profit of $6.90 per unit, that’s a half a gram, that’s a tiny amount. (Moffatt, 2012). The government in turn is afraid that if they were to legalize the drug it would cause a rush of entrepreneurs to go into business growing it, causing the supply to go up bringing the cost down. This is true but in the same sense there are dealers in every city doing it now and we are spending huge amounts of money and time trying to catch them. If the government would legalize it, just like a pack of cigarettes or a six pack of beer they could put a tax on it and get a piece of everyone’s pie, like they do with everything else. This in turn would bring down the number of pushers in the cities because if a person could go to the store to get some why would they need to find someone…