For my third proposal I decided to actually go to the library and check out some books (gasp!). It turns out that there are tons of sources on my white paper topic. Here are some pros that I have gathered from my sources that I will want to further look into for my paper:
- Marijuana has proven medical benefits for cancer, AIDS, glaucoma, etc.
- Marijuana is no more harmful to a person’s health than alcohol or tobacco, which are both legal and widely used, and regulated by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration.
- Crime and violence, both within the U.S. and at the U.S.-Mexico border, are greatly increased due to illegal selling and buying of marijuana. Legalization would logically end the need for such criminal behavior.
- Prohibition of marijuana is unwarranted government intrusion into individual freedom of choice.
Legalizing Marijuana- Drug Policy Reform and Prohibition Politics, by Rudolph J. Gerber, is one of the seven books I rented from the library. A section of this book particularly addresses marijuana for medicinal uses. This section discusses the Compassionate Investigational Drug Program, a program designed to provide medical marijuana for patients in need. Although these programs exist, patients still get charged for possession, something that would not happen if legalized. The book also has a quote from an employee of the DEA: “Marijuana, in natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man….One must reasonably conclude that there is safety for the use of marijuana under medical supervision. To conclude otherwise, on the record, would be unreasonable, arbitrary, and capricious.”
An issue that I have come across is making a distinction between what will be the affect of either business, government, or society. I’ve come to the realization that the changes that will occur due to legalization have an affect on each of those categories. For example, an argument for legalization of marijuana is that it can be taxed. This argument alone affects government and society, and can even reach to the economy. I am going to need to figure out how I am going to organize my white paper if I can’t categorize by business, government, and society.