Article Rebuttal: Legalization of Marijuana
November 1, 2011
This term paper is to examine an article based on an argument to legalize marijuana.
In this article the author looks at the benefits of legalizing marijuana. One of the first items that is examined in the article is the taxation that the government could place on marijuana if it were to be legalized. The author examines when the marijuana tax act and how when it was implemented in 1937 it had an impact and was met with opposing force by companies who would’ve gone bankrupt if marijuana were to legalized. The author writes “The Marijuana Tax Act, which passed in 1937, coincidentally occurred just as the decoricator machine was invented. With this invention, hemp would have been able to take over competing industries almost ...view middle of the document...
There is an often over looked part of the legalization of marijuana it’s not the costs of the prohibition it’s the costs of that are incurred form the use of it. The impact that is felt on law enforcement may not be as severe as originally thought. “Caulkins & Sevigny (2005) found that the percentage of people in prison for marijuana use is less than one half of one percent (0.1-0.2 percent).” (2) So the thought that government would save money on the prosecution of marijuana is in fact an invalid point. When the above stat is mentioned the majority of those in prison, being not even a full percent, the cost that is placed on the government is already at a minimum. A common analogy is used for the legalization gambling. “Legalized gambling has not reduced illegal gambling in the United States; rather, it has increased it. This is particularly evident in sports gambling, most of which is illegal. Legal gambling is taxed and regulated and illegal gambling is not. Legal gambling sets the stage for illegal gambling just the way legal marijuana would set the stage for illegal marijuana trafficking.”(2)
In the article there were really no fallacies. The author made valid points and had information to back it up. The problem with the article is that it lacks the information on the effects that marijuana has on its users and the information pertaining to it being a gateway drug. While it does have certain medicinal benefits it is legal already for that purpose and within moderation after a patient leaves the hospital and only with prescription. So based on the authors information, he/she makes valid points but for the benefit of society as a whole it would not be a wise nor economical decision to legalize marijuana.
2) Caulkins, J.P., & Sevigny, E.L. (2009). How many people does the U.S. imprison for drug use, and who are they? Contemporary Drug Problems, 32(3): 405-428.