Marijuana should be legal. It isn't as harmful as many legal things. More people die from the use of alcohol and drive under the influence of it. Marijuana isn't addictive like alcohol and it is impossible to overdose on this "drug".
Marijuana should not be legalized. Marijuana is the most commonly abused drug. You stated that "it isn't as harmful," however it still is harmful to one's body. Simply because it doesn't cause as many deaths as alcohol, it is still a drug that the body should not be in-taking.
Being that alcohol is legal and contributes to 4% of deaths world wide and marijuana has never been a cause of a single recorded death. This goes to show the inconsistency in the governments effort to try and protect its citizens. Not only does alcohol contribute to more deaths cigarettes do as well. Both of these are far more potent and addictive then marijuana. Marijuana even serves medicinal purposes for cancer patients and can temporarily relieve certain aches and pains.
The amount of deaths caused by alcohol is irrelevant to the use of marijuana. Although it doesn't directly cause death, it does harm the human body. Smoking anything is obviously not advantageous to your health. The use of marijuana causes distorted perceptions, impaired coordination, difficulty with thinking and problem solving, and problems with learning and memory. In addition, marijuana can become addictive after long-term use. It has been reported that when people have tried to quit they experience withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, sleeplessness and irritability.
The fact that alcohol use is legal is relevant because marijuana is illegal and is far less hazardous to your health. Marijuana doesn't create a physical addiction it is more mental for users and becomes a habit. Marijuana is far less addictive then three of the most popular and legal drugs sold in America; caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol. Not only is marijuana not a real health hazard, the legalization of marijuana can allow the government to tax it. Not only would the government benefit from the taxation of marijuana, they could stop putting money into police efforts to end its use. Studies show that just stopping drug enforcement on marijuana would save our government an estimated $7.7 billion. The taxation of this drug could also generate about $6.2 billion in profit. In a time of great economic need this extra money from a non harmful substance will definitely benefit our country.
If marijuana is legalized it won't change the fact that caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol are also dangerous. Instead of legalizing marijuana since its less hazardous, those other drugs should be controlled. We should not look toward legalizing marijuana to benefit our economy, it is a drug! Any type of legalization of a drug is not the best decision. The fact that it can harm your health should not be ignored simply to help the government and its debt. The use of marijuana has been linked to increased rates of anxiety, depression, and schizophrenia. All three of these outcomes will directly affect the life of the smoker which can be avoided. Therefore, the legalization of this drug would lead to an even higher number of people with these disorders.
But if these other drugs are already legal it wont do any harm to make marijuana legal to the public over the age of 18. In Amsterdam where marijuana is legal they have a lower percentage of marijuana users then the U.S and a lower percentage of teen marijuana use. The fact that its illegal makes it more appealing to teens and is sort of "taboo" in a sense. If it was legal less people would use it and also more people who are using hard illegal drugs would just stick to marijuana. In Amsterdam they also have a lower percentage of hard drug users as well.
I believe that the reference to Amsterdam is another irrelevant issue. America is a completely different country and the outcomes of legalizing marijuana would be drastically different. Also, if marijuana was legalized the use of it will surely increase. Especially among teens, they will no longer be restricted from using this drug, therefore, it will be easier to purchase and they will definitely use it more openly. For example, the drinking age is 21, but of course under-age people still do consume alcohol. If the drinking age was dropped to 18, would that mean that less minors would consume alcohol? Absolutely not. Being that it would be legal to take this action, more teens would do it simply because obtaining it wouldn't be as much as a hassle as it was. Legalizing marijuana would in no way shape or form help lower the use of it, it would absolutely put a rise to this drug since it being illegal holds people back from doing it.
Being that its illegal is appealing to people looking for a rush just from doing this. Also legalizing it will take plenty of drug dealers off of the street. Once these dealers are off the street they can finally be productive citizens. Also less crime would take place from this and there will be less people in jail for petty marijuana possession. Overall legalizing marijuana would benefit our country as a whole. Less money spent by drug task force, more money will be generated through taxation. Also there will be more people off the street selling drugs and they could contribute to society and be productive citizens.
Many people have not tried marijuana since it is an illegal drug. Legalizing it will eliminate the fear of certain people trying it. And from there, it will collect more users. Obviously, your knowledge on marijuana possession is limited, if you are caught with a minimal amount of it, it will not lead to doing time in jail. Most people in jail for marijuana are those who carried enough to be suspected of selling it. Also, those who sell marijuana are more likely to go on to sell other drugs if marijuana is legalized. Many drug dealers begin by selling marijuana, become addicted to the easy money and from there move on to selling more expensive drugs such as cocaine and pills. Legalizing it will not give drug dealers a sudden epiphany to stop selling drugs, it becomes a way of life for them which can be hard to break. Legalizing marijuana would do more damage to our country than people may realize. Think of all of the students who go to school high, all the parents who smoke in front of their children and those who smoke on a daily basis, they will all worsen. Marijuana has been illegal for numerous reasons and making it legal will certainly worsen society and make more people seek to use it.
Reasons for voting decision: The main reason I give this to Pro is the point about caffeine and nicotine being worse drugs than Marijuana, and yet these things are legal. Con completely dropped this attack. Pro also demonstrated that legalizing Marijuana would also be beneficial in some manner.
Both debaters should cite their evidence in the future to avoid confusion.
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