Marijuana arguments lack support, research



After reading the marijuana opinion column by Beth Mendenhall and the letter to the editor by Jacob Hughes, I find that neither person has given sufficient evidence to either side.

In regard to Mendenhall’s column, she lacks effective support, though she does bring up interesting arguments. This issue of “legalizing marijuana” is something that should be put to rest. America is too conservative to take into account any views that are not part of the Christian agenda.

The letter to the editor by Hughes also lacks efficient support countering her argument simply stating that we are only allowed to pursue happiness and that marijuana should not be legal, because it only pertains to less than half of the population.

The closest thing to legalizing marijuana that America could possibly come close to is to decriminalize it. Such acts have been taken by the infamous Netherlands. While everyone says pot is legal in Amsterdam, that is a myth. The Netherlands has taken a proactive approach to a growing marijuana problem. They decriminalized marijuana and taxed the sale of it. The money that the government makes off of the sales goes toward the fight against hard drugs.

The claims made by Hughes about the importing of the drug raises a valid question of “where would we get it?” If the United States was to adopt a policy like that of the Netherlands, there are restrictions on the number of plants that can be grown and how much you are able to import. If you go beyond these restrictions, the law can prosecute you.

In the United States, Congress is looking at Senate Bill 714, The National Criminal Justice Commission Act of 2009, which seeks to initiate a comprehensive re-evaluation of America’s drug and prison policies. This bill is headed by Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va.

While the issue of legalizing marijuana will not be solved overnight, arguments like Mendenhall and Hughes’ should be valued only if sufficient support is provided to back up their arguments.

Brandon West, junior in secondary education