The Legal Battle over Marijuana use

What is the issue concerning whether or not marijuana use should be legal or not? If you look at the history of marijuana, it was originally made illegal because the government at one time thought that Mexicans and African Americans were bad people, at that marijuana use was linked to these people. The Mexicans imported it, and the African Americans, mostly in and around the jazz scene, used it.
The government used foolish videos like Reefer Madness in order to “scare” the public into believing that marijuana would make you go crazy and kill people. While this is the most widely-known propanganda campaign against marijuana, it’s easy enough to find what happened before and after that period.
The issue is not so much if it’s bad for you or not, nor is it really about how if affects your nervous system and reactions. There was an independent non-scientific study done in England not too long ago where they followed a guy driving in a vehicle, on a closed course, before and after smoking marijuana. And to even the interviewer’s surprise, the guy actually drove even better after smoking, because he felt that he could “concentrate” more. Interesting.
There are many studies out that clearly state that marijuana is much safer to smoke than cigarettes. Yet cigarettes remain on the shelf at stores everywhere. It is medically known that cigarettes can kill you, but marijuana has never had a case where it was the cause of death.
So why are cigarettes on stores shelves and not marijuana cigarettes? Wouldn’t it make more sense, if you choose to smoke, to have a choice? Or, even better, stop selling cigarettes altogether and just sell marijuana?
First, the cigarette companies lobby the government will millions of dollars each year to keep marijuana out of the picture. And the government is not going to give up that cash flow because they cannot figure out how to actually “sell” marijuana. It it a plant. It can grow anywhere. It’s nickname “weed” is because that’s how is grows.
Let’s look at alcohol for a moment. It also went through a prohibition stage, but was then regulated. Why? Because the government makes a lot of money from the alcohol industry’s lobbyists. And compare marijuana to alcohol, there is none. Alcohol can be used in moderation with positive affects, much like marijuana can. However, unlike marijuana, if you drink too much alcohol, you are now prone to dangering yourself and others, and could even lead to alcohol poisoning, causing death. And with all of the trouble that alcohol has caused in the United States, it still sits on store shelves, and remains a very popular item. There are very strict laws concerning alcohol, especially while driving, and very serious consequences awaits those who choose to drink and drive.
But it’s ok to sit home and get hammered off of a bottle of wine, of a case of beer, or a half a bottle of some nice hard liquor. But don’t dare have a bong or a pipe hanging around. Just sit there and chain-smoke cigarettes instead.
The other issue as to why it is still illegal is because there is not enough “young blood” in the government to change the law. There are still people in power who have been there since the ice age, and until they retire, groups like NORML and others will continue the “WAR” to legalize marijuana.
The government could force the cigarette companies to harvest marijuana and produce good, quality marijuana joints. Or sell buds in a little packet, like they do pipe tobacco. Or perhaps a canister like chew comes in. The money coming into the government if they went that route would be great, and could even outsell the cigarette and the lobbyists money.
And what about the government telling us that “Drug” money is used by terrorists to kill Americans? If that is the case, why are we spending billions of dollars preventing drugs from coming in to the country, when we could just easily legalize marijuana? That would essentially neutralize the black market for marijuana from the terrorists. Wouldn’t this make sense? Save money from finding the sources to simply making money from producing and selling it in the country?
More people use marijuana than non-users think. And people in respected positions too. Most of the anti-marijuana crowd has never smoked themselves. And yes, like everything else used to “alter the senses” has a positive and negative side, marijuana does have numerous positive effects, and some side effects. But they are much less extreme than many legal precription drugs, and the difference being between those is that precription drugs are manufactured and synthetically produced. Marijuana is natural.
Take a look at the Netherlands. In Amsterdam, there are coffee shops everywhere, and people smoke marijuana, and even order the salad of the day for lunch, consisting of some fine quality, freshly picked buds. The love their marijuana, and interestingly enough, they have the lowest drug abuse rate in the world, one of the lowest crime rates in the world, and guess what, they work, too.
So what is the problem in this country? It’s the old folks controlling the books. But in time, as our government changes, and younger, more sympathetic minds towards marijuana use enter the system, the laws will change. They already are in some states, for medical use. At some point it needs to cross over into the personal category.