MaryJane. Pot. Weed. Muggles. Marijuana has been known by various slang terms dating back to even the 1930s and, over the years, has become increasingly popular across borders, albeit through illegal means. For instance, in the United States 1https://www.britannica.com/story/pro-and-con-recreational-marijuana, more than 128 million people have tried marijuana, with over 600,000 Americans arrested for marijuana possession on an annual basis. This led to more agitations for the legalization of Cannabis, with public support in the U.S. increasing from 12% in 1969 to 66% in recent times.
These agitations led to the legalization of Cannabis ten years ago, when Colorado and Washington became the first two States to legalize recreational marijuana. Now, more than twenty states have legalized medical marijuana, while a further nine have legalized recreational marijuana. However, the federal government still views the sale of marijuana —for medical purposes or otherwise— as a crime, and places it on part with selling heroin, or cocaine.
The states that legalized Cannabis are, on one hand, advocating the various benefits of legalized Cannabis, while the federal and some other state governments, on the other hand, continue to proffer the list of disadvantages of legalized cannabis. In states where cannabis is legalized, several dispensaries offer cannabis seeds for sale, such as the Herbies Seeds. This article, therefore, will highlight the various pros and cons of legalized Cannabis.
The Benefits Of Legalized Cannabis
Disassembling The Black Market
Through the legalization of Cannabis, the monopoly of the black market over marijuana has been significantly reduced.
In years prior to its legalization, Cannabis could only be found through illicit activities orchestrated by criminal gangs and organizations. With the legalization of the drug, however, these organizations and gangs were either forced out of business or forced to start selling the drug legitimately. Nowadays, cannabis dispensaries are stationed in every cannabis-legalized state, which portends positive news for its users.
Better Quality & Rigorous Safety Control
The regulation and legalization of cannabis ensure that there is better control over the quality of Cannabis.
This is especially important, with the recent news that some illicit dealers of the drug have now begun to lace marijuana with other substances. With legalized cannabis, there are specific standards that will determine the quality and safety control of marijuana.
This safety and quality control will also imply that the medical system will be less burdened with problems of overdose on unknown substances that are infused or hidden within marijuana.
Higher Tax Revenue For The Government
The most significant debate for those that are pro-legalization is whether this legalization will help increase tax revenue.
Case in point: As of 2015, the legal sales of Cannabis were valued at $996 million. Almost a billion dollars! The tax proportionate to this revenue amounted to $135 million, which can be used to increase the social and development structures of the community.
Availability of Medicinal Cannabis
Medical Cannabis has been discovered to treat a lot of conditions, including Crohn's disease, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, migraines, cancer, chronic pain, anxiety, etc.
To legally access medical cannabis, one can obtain a Leafwell medical card after getting a recommendation from a licensed healthcare provider.
Therefore, using medical cannabis ensures that the wrong usage of cannabis does not burden the healthcare system.
Reduction of Gang-Related Drug Violence
Finally, drug violence perpetuated by gangs is still commonplace in our various communities. However, the legalization of cannabis removed one of the major factors or causes of this violence.
In states that have legalized cannabis, people who are unduly wronged or encounter some form of injustice can seek the full redress of the court, instead of seeking personal vengeance. This not only benefits the wronged victims but also the general community who, on some occasions, may be the unfortunate victims of drug violence.
The Cons of Legalized Cannabis
It Is Highly Addictive
There are a lot of debates over the addictive nature of cannabis. Whilst some have claimed that cannabis is not as addictive as heroin or crack, others have claimed that one marijuana user out of ten develops drug dependency over time.
The latter group of people insists that stopping marijuana "cold turkey" leads to many withdrawal symptoms such as irritability and anxiety.
Poor Mental Health
Those that opposed the legislation of recreational marijuana reference studies that indicate how marijuana smokers suffer everything, ranging from restricted blood flow to the brain, to memory loss and even an increased likelihood of depression and schizophrenia.
The Lungs of Marijuana Smokers Are At Risk
Opponents of the legalization of marijuana claim that smoking marijuana is worse for your body and lungs than smoking cigarettes.
It's presumed that those using or smoking recreational marijuana imply that the user holds in the smoke longer than a person smoking a cigarette. However, this theory does not discuss the various other later alternatives with which cannabis may be administered, including vaporizing, tinctures, etc.
Cannabis Alters Your Perception
Those that oppose marijuana are also of the view that cannabis —like alcohol — alters one's perception.
This could lead to problems like impaired driving which is deemed the same thing as driving under the influence of alcohol. This is irrespective of whether you smoked marijuana for recreational or medicinal purposes.
The penalties for marijuana-related offenses depend on the state. In states where marijuana has been legalized, the judge can hand down sentences ranging from jail time between 2-180 days, fines ranging from $200-$500, and public service. In states where cannabis is still illegal, the penalties are higher and harsher. For instance, in Kentucky, first-time offenders may receive 2-10 years of jail time and fines reaching $20,000.
Cannabis is a Gateway Drug
Finally, opponents of legalizing cannabis state that marijuana lures people to try harder, and more dangerous drugs. This is in light of the fact they more research have come out, stating that marijuana might be linked to more dangerous substances like heroin and even prescription painkillers.
With more states legalizing cannabis, the pros and cons of legalized cannabis will continue to increase. Therefore, users of marijuana now have a responsibility of understanding the law in their state day about using cannabis, either recreational or otherwise.
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