Persuasive essay: LEGALIZE MARIJUANA

Essay by TheTimmehHigh School, 11th gradeA+, February 2009

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America has been historically known throughout the world as the land of the free - a place where one can live their life as they please, without the chains of oppression to tie them down or a heavy-handed government to rule their life. The Pilgrims left their home country of England to flee religious persecution, so it was only natural that they would want the country they laid the foundation for to be a land of freedom, where people of all religions and lifestyles were welcome. However, America has strayed from their wishes and from the guidance of the Constitution, and has become a place where the government interferes in the lives of the people far more than is wise or necessary. The criminalization of marijuana is one example of such arbitrary, illogical, and unfair interference. The government has consistently failed to provide sufficient reasoning for why marijuana is illegal, and so until it does, marijuana should simply cease to be criminalized in the United States.

Marijuana is considered a Schedule 1 Controlled Substance under federal laws designed to protect public health and safety ("Why is Marijuana Illegal?"). A drug must meet the following criteria in order to be deemed a Schedule 1 Controlled Substance:"(A) The drug or other substance has high potential for abuse.

(B) The drug or other substance has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.

(C) There is a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug or other substance under medical supervision" ("US CODE: Title 21, 801...").

The federal government claims that marijuana meets all these criteria, and it's certainly easy for someone to buy into these claims if they don't know the facts about what marijuana is and what its typical effects are on the user. Marijuana...