Research Paper

Submitted By alexjohnsonduke
Words: 1560
Pages: 7

Alexandria Johnson-Duke MWF 9am
3/20/2013

Marijuana vs. Alcohol which is safer?

In Novemeber of 2012 the citizens of Colorado and Washington made it very clear what they wanted. The citizens of those two states voted to legalize the recreational use of the once illicit drug marijuana. Not only has this decision influenced Colorado and Washington, it has taken the whole country and has everyone wondering: Will it be legal in my state? How will this affect my lifestyle? How will this be regulated? Fortunately there is an answer to how it will be regulated, for most circumstances just like alcohol. But how can we regulate something so dangerous with something that is a common day splurge?
The legalization of marijuana has brought much controversy and has brought many viewpoints. Some people would say that marijuana is a drug that should remain illegal because of its dangers, but others believe that marijuana is actually “safer” than most drugs such as alcohol. How can something that is so prized in society be safer than something that has been illegal since it originated? Contrary to popular belief, it would seem that marijuana is actually safer than alcohol, due to all the fatal injuries and deaths caused by alcohol.
Alcohol has been around since the ancient times, and has always been prized by the people. From the earliest times to the present, alcohol has played an important role in religion and worship. Both beer and wine were deified and offered to gods. So it makes sense as to why Alcohol is treasured all over the world. National alcohol prohibition came into effect with the
Ratification of the 18th Amendment to the US Constitution in 1919 and the passage in 1920 of the Volstead Act that prohibited the manufacture, sale and supply of alcohol [2, 19]. The 18th Amendment stated that:
After a year from the ratification of this article the manufacture sale or transportation of intoxicating liquors within, the importation thereof from the
United States and all territory subject to the jurisdiction thereof for beverage purposes is hereby prohibited. The national alcohol prohibition aroused bigger issues within America. Citizens were illegally making their own alcohol and making stronger solutions. This made citizens become more inebriated and created an underground system of Alcohol. It would seem that as a cause more people drink spirits because they are indeed stronger.
Alcohol all in all, is a drug. A drug being a substance that has a physiological effect when ingested or otherwise introduced into the body. Alcohol is a depressant, or in other words reduces nervous activity. Ethyl alcohol, which is the only alcohol used in beverages is produced by the fermentation of grains and fruits.
When alcohol is consumed, it is absorbed into the bloodstream through small blood vessels in the walls of the stomach and small intestine. From there, it travels from the stomach to the brain which sedates the actions of nerve cells. Alcohol is also carried into the bloodstream to the liver, which eliminates the alcohol by ‘metabolizing’ where it is converted into a nontoxic substance. The liver can only metabolize a certain amount and leaves the excess alcohol to circulate throughout the body. Therefore the intensity of inebriations is directly correlated with how much a person drinks.
Alcohol has many effects on the human body. While consuming alcohol, depending on the amount of which was consumed and the tolerance of the drinker will determine which affects he or she experience. Some short term physical effects are slurred speech, drowsiness, distorted vision and hearing, impaired judgment, decreased perception and coordination, Nasuea, headaches and finally blackouts are all common when drinking.
Although alcohol may make things fun or more exciting, there are big dangers that come along with…