Legalize marijuana

Legal marijuana is a topic that is being discussed around the world and will actually be voted on by the UN in 2009. The rationalization is that the regulation will allow control of the strength of THC and decimalization will have a positive social impact. Ten of the fifty U.S. states have passed medical marijuana laws, and more states will vote on similar laws in the coming months. These laws are only symbolic at this point because the federal government still has laws prohibiting the use, possession, and cultivation of marijuana in the U.S. If federal law changes, these states are ready, at least as far as the law, to begin distributing marijuana.

Legal marijuana will affect addiction treatment in a number of ways. There will be experts who will insist that people cannot become addicted to marijuana and that drug abuse will be a more appropriate label. Physical addiction to marijuana will be denied and therefore third party payment for detox will be out of the question. Legalized marijuana will increase the depth of denial in an addict arguing that if it is legal it should not be a problem. Marijuana use affects attention and judgment and will make the occasional user more willing to try other drugs or engage in questionable behavior.

Marijuana use increases the risk of cancers in the repertoire system, is related to leukemia in offspring, and is the cause of impaired cognitive abilities, especially in adolescents. The social impact and increased health costs associated with legalizing marijuana appear to have been left out of the equation when deciding the benefits of a change in the legal status of this particular plant.

Marijuana is a gateway drug and will lead to the use of other drugs, some of which are more addictive and physically debilitating. Society and the media for years have warned about the dangers of marijuana and are now considering legalizing it. What massage does that send to those who are just beginning to experiment with intoxicants? Drug rehab centers should prepare for an influx of new patients,

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