The belief that legalization of cannabis is a good idea is gathering pace. A few states and European countries have already decriminalized the drug, and it’s thought that even more will follow suit. Drug laws and the so-called ‘war on drugs’ is a highly contentious issue, but common sense now seems to be prevailing.
There are still a lot of people that aren’t convinced though. There are so many arguments for legalization, but some people will never be convinced. However, if you’re still on the fence, here are 5 reasons why cannabis should be legalized.
Prohibition Has Been Ineffective
By all accounts, the war on drugs has failed. The world is no closer to reducing drug use than when it started, so why bother? It doesn’t help to criminalize people who just happen to like using cannabis recreationally. By doing so, you can turn a person who occasionally smokes cannabis into a hardened criminal by forcing them through the prison system. There’s no sense in that.
If the law was changed, the focus could be shifted away from criminalization and towards medical support. As has been proven in Portugal, it is much more effective to treat people with drug problems as sick people than criminals.
Legalization Takes Control Away From Criminals
Let’s face it, people are going to smoke cannabis whether it’s illegal or not. So, the real question is: do you want criminals to profit from cannabis sales or do you want the state to profit? That’s the issue we face.
If you take the control away from the gangs and criminals, you might also stop the flow of money towards organized crime. Therefore, you could stop other crimes as a byproduct.
Money Would Be Saved
Do you know how much money it costs to house a prisoner in jail for one day? It’s roughly $62. If we were to legalize cannabis, you’d dramatically cut down the prison population and save bundles of cash too. All that money could then be put to much better uses, such as improving drugs education and improving treatment for drug addicts.
It Could Provide an Economic Boost
By setting up an entirely new industry, as is already happening in some states, you help the economy and create new jobs. There is a lot of work that goes into growing and selling marijuana. There are sales jobs, cultivation jobs, marijuana trimming jobs and regulatory jobs. All those jobs could give many areas a much-needed boost.
Is the Drug Really So Dangerous Anyway?
Many people argue that marijuana is not dangerous enough to warrant its illegality. If smoking and drinking alcohol is perfectly legal, how can it be that marijuana possession is illegal? We know for a fact that alcohol and tobacco are incredibly damaging to our long-term health, so shouldn’t marijuana be regulated and taxed, in the same way?
It’s a compelling argument and a difficult one to deflect. We’re not 100% sure what the long-term effects of cannabis use are, but it’s unlikely that they’ll be any worse than the effects of alcohol and tobacco.