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The Issue Discussion: Why Should Marijuana Be Legalized

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 For many years people have raised the question why should marijuana be legalized? But never asked why should marijuana be illegal? States are moving forward for legalization whether it is for recreational or medicinal use. Most prehistoric cultures used the plant as herbal medicine and used the hemp for clothing, paper, sails, and rope. Marijuana can open many doors to many opportunities for our state here in Texas and it would be the best choice Texas can ever do.

Marijuana has been shown to be far less dangerous than most drugs that are legal and that are being prescribe every day. For example, opioids are pain killers that are being prescribe every day to patients that need a remedy to ease their pain. Unfortunately, those pills become very addictive and people die from an overdose on opioids. This addiction will turn into a “chronic disease that can cause major health, social and economic problems” (NIH). Millions of lives have been lost to the addiction around the globe. Every day, every hour someone is struggling with this addiction and is dying because of it. How can we give such drug to our people? What if this was your loved one that was struggling with this? We want our people to live a happy healthy life, don’t we? If you answered yes, then why are we allowing this drug to be legal? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cited that “fifty-five percent of drug overdose deaths were related to prescriptions medications; seventy-five percent of those involved opioid analgesics” (CDC). Whereas marijuana has not had one death and is not addictive. The “FDA has approved two cannabis-derived products to help those who are taking cancer chemotherapy and to help the loss of appetite in patients with AIDS” (FDA.GOV) Due to the plant’s cannabinoid Tetrahydrocannabinol also known as THC it interacts with areas in our brain causing us to relax, ease nausea, and to promote hunger.

The plant contains over 100 different chemicals that are referred to as cannabinoids. Every single cannabinoid has a different effect on our body. Extracting them from the plant can be turned into medicine that can act as a replacement for these addictive drugs. Those who suffer from anxiety are now quitting their anti-anxiety medication and switching over to medical marijuana. The medication that is used to treat anxiety and that is being prescribed everyday by doctors is benzodiazepines. These pills are known as tranquilizers and known as Xanax/Valium these medications are easily addictive because the abuser can build a tolerance to the drug and therefor will increase the dosage to get the effect of the tranquilizer. “Over thirty percent of the overdoses on opioids also involve with benzodiazepines” (NIH) more than 100 people die each day after consuming these two together. How is this legal, but not marijuana? which is not addictive nor has had any deaths. These drugs are taking over the lives of our loved ones and it legal and is being prescribed every single day. why not a safer medication?

Another reason it will be the best choice for Texas is because keeping marijuana illegal is expensive. Our government spends billions to enforce marijuana possession laws each year. People are becoming felons for the remedies the plant has to offer these are nonviolent drug offenders, why are we spending time and money on nonviolent drug offender? After their sentence it is very hard for them to find or keep a job, they can no longer vote, nor qualify for any assistance help programs. The State of Texas has one of the highest arrest rates for marijuana possession in the country this legalization of this will save billions per year on law enforcement and making room for more serious drug offenders.

The marijuana industry is growing day by day and it has created “more than 211,000 cannabis jobs across the united states” (Leafly). States that are booming is Florida, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and New York their cannabis employment has created from 5,000 to 9,000 jobs. Imagine how many jobs it can created for our state! The jobs will create revenue and we can use that for our state it can go towards education help those schools that are struggling to provide for their students and it can also go to colleges and universities maybe it will help tuition to become free. It can go to communities that need financial assistance. To local merchants that need the helping hand to have a successful business. It can go to our local government to be put for programs to help our people. It can go to our veterans and their families to help take care of our war hero’s. The state of Oklahoma legalized marijuana in 2018 and since then it made a total revenue of more than $23.3 billion by the month of September 2019. Puerto Rico accounts for 34% of the medical marijuana market. In the year of 2025 Canada’s medicinal market is projected to quadruple and reach the estimate of $1.8 billion. All this money can go to school construction, drug abuse programs, and medical research and so much more! “Cannabis is projected to hit a job creation rate pf 110% in just three years from 2017 to 2020” (FORBES). These numbers are amazing, and Texas should get on the bandwagon because it will succeed in the state of Texas.

Also legalizing marijuana would get rid of the confusion surrounding hemp and allow us to take advantage of hemp’s agricultural and industrial uses. Hemp is not the same as marijuana, but the plants are closely related, hemp refers to the strains that does not have any levels of THC which is the main psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. Hemp is a versatile crop with many practical uses the hemp product offer environmentally friendly alternatives for a variety of everyday life applications. The hemp fibers can be used to make rope, clothing, and paper. It also offers a HempNut which is contained with healthy nutrients and has an essential fatty acid. It also has oils can are beneficial for our skin health and anti-aging. Can help to balance hormones, promote heart health, improves brain function, and can assist in weight loss. But still the government is trying to protect us from this beneficial plant spending millions on the drug war wildness. Does this seem like we need protection from this plant? And guess what, it will also create jobs especially for farmers here in Texas. So many opportunities this plant can bring to our state and the data shows it! It is safer, has many benefits, it can create jobs, it has not had any deaths, and it can create revenue. So why should it be illegal? 

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