Legalization of Marijuana

3608 words 15 pages
Legalization of Marijuana Several topics in modern day society cause controversy, but one topic that out ranks them all is the legalization of marijuana. The main argument is whether not marijuana should be treated the same as already legalized drugs, such as tobacco and alcohol. Many Americans use marijuana illegally; the people using the drug range from the age of teens to even adults in their eighties. Marijuana is considered by most, especially in legal terms, as a dangerous drug. Although the drug is seen as such, many still continue to use it and argue it should be legalized for several reasons. Both citizens and government officials alike debate this topic. To successfully develop and argument for the legalization of marijuana …show more content…
To be able to truly understand the debate of a topic, one must be aware of the background and history of said topic. The marijuana plant has been used in the world for hundreds of years. Cannabis was first used as a medical drug in India, in the year 1200 (“The History”). Over the next seven hundred years marijuana ventured its way across Asia and Europe, ending up in the Americas. Americans were introduced to drugs in the late nineteenth century. According to researchers, the first law banning in type of illegal drug in the US was in 1914, the Harrison Narcotics Act (Russell 533). This act banned the recreational use of opium and cocaine type drugs. A few years after this marijuana was introduced to America by immigrants from central America and the Caribbean Islands. Marijuana use began to progress throughout America very quickly, especially in the Hispanic and African American communities. As the use of the drug began to expand, state governments began to realize it was a problem and acted accordingly. Russell relates that, by the 1930’s twenty-four states banned the use of cannabis in any possible way (533). This was the beginning of the widespread prohibition of marijuana in all of the country. Around this same time the Federal Bureau of Narcotics was created and was led by Harry J. Anslinger, who was know as the “father of marijuana prohibition (Russell 533). With the criminalization

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