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Marijuana Legalization – Will It Really Happen?

Posted in Legalization of Marijuana by htbaird on January 15, 2009

My political hero, William F. Buckely, founder/publisher of the National Review, former host of the popular TV debate program “Firing Line”, and true conseravtive has long supported the legalization of marijuana. His ability to discuss the topic (which would easily provoke rage in the average debator) in a calm and always gentlemanly style has earned him the respect of millions.
However, this is the one issue on which Mr. Buckley and I part ways.
His argument – which carries a lot of validity – is that our prison system is over-crowded with violent criminals, who are too often parolled to make room for more recent offenders, including reapeat marijuana “offenders.” He also note in his argument that marijuana is not a drug that causes violent behavior in the user, and that the only violence associated with marijuana stems from the fact that it is illegal and trafficked through the “drug trade.” His beleif is that if marijuana were legal, it would vastly decrease violence, and that the ones who would suffer would be the illegal drug traffickers.
While I understand his argument, I am afraid that the legalization of pot would do more harm than good to decent, law-abiding citizens. Legalizing it would be tantamount to inviting people to use it…including those who never would have considered it otherwise, or known how or where to get it.
As far as sending marijauna users and non-violent dealers to prison, however, I beleive that is crossing the line. I think that heavier and heavier fines for those frequently caught in possesion is the answer…not parolling murderers and rapists to make room for marijuanna smokers.
I have seen the effects of marijuana on those who have a penchant for it and and have become long-term users. Over time, they become slow-witted, and often paranoid. This bizarre behavior wrecks relationships, ruins families, and ultimately takes away the life-potential of the user.
While I understand that the same thing could be said about alcohol, it is an entirely different matter. Jesus drank wine, and considered it a gift from God to bring people closer together. While there are those who have adverse effects from it, the majority of people who drink it do not abuse it. Even if you are of the opinion that alcohol is just as dangerous as marijuana, it has been around and legal for much too long to take it away. Good or bad, it is long-entrenched in the fabric of Western society. Let us not make marijuana another substance for easy access to abuse.