, Research Paper
Is cannabis a danger to the public? ? I think not.
Should cannabis be legalised? I think so. If you agree with me then read this article. If you don?t, then read it anyway. It might teach you a thing, or two, about reality.
Cannabis, weed, grass, hemp, shit, ganga, bhang, marijuana; they are all the same: completely harmless, and completely misunderstood. 260 million people worldwide use it for its potential advantages. Those who don?t use it are missing out. In 1973, the drug was banned from use in Britain, much to the dismay of its users. For twenty-seven years, people have fought for the right to use it as a drug, unsuccessfully. Read on to find out the mistake that we have made.
The first point that politicians raise is that cannabis has a worse effect on the user than tobacco in cigarettes. This is also the first point at which they stumble.
Cannabis is indeed ten times worse for the lungs when mixed with tobacco, but alone, cannabis does not cause any negative effects such as those of cigarettes. However, a cigarette does not simply contain tobacco. It also contains over 2000 other chemicals, such as tar and nicotine, which effect the body in negative ways. As for alcohol, not only can it effect the body in the long term, but there is also a risk in ?drink-driving?. Far more people die, at present, under the effect of alcohol and cigarettes than die from cannabis. And, very importantly, both cigarettes and alcohol are addictive, whereas, it is impossible to become physically addicted to cannabis. It is also impossible to over-dose on cannabis, and people who die after taking it, die of their own stupidity.
One claim is that, if cannabis were legalised, the tobacco companies would jump at the chance to produce tobacco-based reefers so as to get more young people addicted to smoking tobacco.
This is true. However, if someone is buying cigarettes, they are buying them for the pleasurable effects that come with them. If they are buying cannabis, they are buying it for exactly the same reason. There would be no reason for people to buy cigarettes that contained cannabis, as the cannabis can give them the same effects. If anything, the customers would be drawn towards cannabis, as its effects are less harmful.
Another argument against the legalisation of the drug is that users of cannabis would move on to using hard-core drugs instead.
In a recent survey of the country?s young people, it was discovered that around 45% of those interviewed had tried drugs. Probably more disturbingly, 73% of the 1000 sixth formers asked, had been offered drugs. 80% of the people who had taken cannabis did so because of the ?buzz? they received. That is to say that they took the drug because it was illegal, and had a certain risk element. If the drug were legalised in Britain, it would be interesting to see whether the number of youths using the drug was reduced. I think so. The government has done close to no research into the case over whether cannabis has a close influence on the users of drugs such as heroine, and still it insists that soft drugs lead on to hard drugs ? or most heroine addicts smoked cannabis, therefore most cannabis users will go on to use heroine.
Another argument is that due to the legalisation of cannabis the amount of violent crime in this country will rise.
Colin Brewer, the Medical Director at the Stapleford Drug and Alcohol Abuse Centre, says this: ?As someone who treats both alcoholism and illicit drug abuse, I have sometimes said to alcoholic drinkers, that if they cannot stop drinking, they should seriously consider changing to a less damaging recreational drug, such as cannabis.?
Alcohol is the country?s problem drug and is directly responsible for a large amount of violent crime. Most regular cannabis users drink little or no alcohol. For them, the drug is an alternative to alcohol, and not an addiction.
If marijuana is not legalised for public use, it should at least be open to medical use. It is a commonly known fact among cannabis users, that it can be beneficially in the treatment of cancer, glaucoma, AIDS, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy and chronic pain. Why are people piling their money into charities to help sufferers from these diseases, when all that they need is a joint? Why are the charities spending money on researching treatment, when God?s gift is in front of their noses? If no other reason is suitable, it should at least be considered for the fact that it would save the NHS a fortune, if they were to allow doctors to prescribe reefers in the place of other painkillers. After all, it has a yield of over 4 tons per acre, and therefore, is extremely cheap to grow.
At present, cannabis policies do not prevent people from using the drugs – instead, they punish those unlucky enough to get caught. And what good does imprisonment do to those people?
It doesn?t teach them the mistake they made. Nor does it change the way they think. And it certainly doesn?t mean that when they leave prison, they won?t carry on to enjoy the effects of cannabis.
The prohibition of the drug is putting its users at risk to an illegal, mixed-drug environment, where if they want to consume cannabis, they have to take a risk. If cannabis was open to public use in the same way that tobacco is, the users would not be threatened by dangerous drug-cocktails from illegal suppliers. For example, the small amount of people, who apparently die from the effects of cocaine actually dead because they have snorted soap-powder.
Most importantly, unlike cigarettes, cannabis only endangers the user and not the ?innocent? public, so if someone wants to take the drug, why should anyone else stop him? It is not the danger of the drug that makes cannabis illegal; it is the misinformed people who prevent it from being legalised. So wake up, and vote for the legalisation of cannabis.