The debate over the legalization of the use and purchase of drugs has been ongoing for years now with opponents and proponents expressing their points of view. In the United States, the percentage of people in favor of legalizing the use of marijuana rose from a mere 32% to 53% in the last nine years, according to the last conducted survey. Economists are also doing researches on its impact to the country’s economy while health advocates are pointing out its implications, both positive and negative.
In some states, the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes is already allowed. However, this is not the opinion of some group. Here is an analysis on the advantages and disadvantages of lifting the prohibition on drugs and passing laws on this issue.
List of Pros of Legalizing Drugs
1. Legalization of drugs can create tax revenues for the government.
Based on the views of some economists, one of the beneficiaries of legalizing drugs will be the government. They point out that once drugs like marijuana, cocaine and heroin are allowed to be distributed commercially, higher taxes can be imposed on these items, with the same range or higher as the taxes paid by manufacturers and distributors of cigarettes and alcohol. The amount of revenue, as estimated by the economists can reach billions of dollars.
2. It can reduce government expenditures.
Once these drugs are legalized on the streets, expenses from enforcing the law of drug prohibition will be eradicated. Moreover, the state will not have to pay for court proceedings, prosecutions and sustenance of inmates incarcerated from unlawful drug use and sales.
3. Legalizing the use of drugs will benefit the sick from pain.
Marijuana is already allowed in some states for medicinal purposes and for some groups, the use of this drug will help thousands of people and even children who suffer from medical conditions. Cancer patients undergoing therapy and those who suffer from depression can benefit from the use of drugs such as marijuana through palliative management.
List of Cons of Legalizing Drugs
1. This can result to higher crime rates.
Opponents fear that making these drugs easily accessible and without regulation can lead to more people committing more crimes. If a drug gets in the hands of criminals or even ordinary people who abuse its use, it can have effects that can cloud the mind and might end into crimes.
2. It can be fatal to some people.
Drugs contain chemicals and substances that can cause depression, allergic reactions and other effects. If any individual will be able to buy just any drug over the counter, addiction can result and worse, overdose.
3. Abuse of drugs can affect a person’s cognition and behavior.
If drugs will be readily available, businesses can commercialize on this and encourage people to buy and eventually be addicted. Even with drug prohibition, addiction is already an existing problem where relationships are ruined, careers dumped and some people become depressed pushing them to the point of ending their lives. These unfortunate events are often drug-related and legalizing drugs will make matters worse.
Whether drugs will be legalized or not will always be an ongoing argument. There will be people who will support legalization and opponents who will never agree to legalization. It is best to remember that anything too much is more often bad than good. A drug should be used for its purpose, to cure ailments. Any use other than this should not be the norm. In the end, it is not really an issue of making it legal or not.