Sunday, March 29, 2009

Arguments for the Legalization of Marijuana

By Chris Scott - Lately there has been a great deal of buzz on the Internet about the possibility of legalizing marijuana in the United States.

I must admit that my initial reaction as a conservative Christian was reflexive; legalizing marijuana would be a very bad thing. It’s clear with the continual use of any sort of addictive drug, that harmful bodily consequences inevitably ensue. We see that apparent in the lives of our Hollywood idols, rock stars, and musicians, who have, in many cases, lost their very lives because of drug addictions.

However, after much research, careful thought and consideration, my standpoint has significantly changed.

Looking back at the prohibition years in the United States and the unmistakable failure that was, a few sociological truths arise. When the United States government banned alcohol in 1920, the consequences were dramatic. The Mafia were known for little more than gambling and thievery before the prohibition era. During that time, organized crime and racketeering flourished; the Mafia wouldn’t be what it is today were it not for the prohibition laws of the 20s. Bootlegging and other attempts to circumvent prohibition led only to more crime. John D. Rockefeller stated:
When Prohibition was introduced, I hoped that it would be widely supported by
public opinion and the day would soon come when the evil effects of alcohol would be recognized. I have slowly and reluctantly come to believe that this has not been the result. Instead, drinking has generally increased; the speakeasy has replaced the saloon; a vast army of lawbreakers has appeared; many of our best citizens have openly ignored Prohibition; respect for the law has been greatly lessened; and crime has increased to a level never seen before.

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