The debate over drug legalization has a long history now and is common among the public, as well as among the politicians from across the political spectrum. Supporters of legalization consider current policies regarding drugs harmful to the society and oppose them as the ones that restrict personal freedoms, cause unnecessary expenses of the government, and increase the crime level. They view these laws as a form of a racism and point to the war on drugs as ineffective and disruptive.
The importance of legalization of certain substances for medical purposes is also stipulated. Opponents of legalization of drugs claim this will be catastrophic to the nation, as it will increase use of drugs and, correspondingly, of the crime level, as new addicts will try to sustain themselves though criminal activity, while drug dealers will unlikely become law-abiding citizens (Edmund). The purpose of the paper is to examine the current debate over legalization of drugs, in particular legalization of marijuana. Palash Ghosh stipulates that the legalization of drugs like marijuana will end costly drug war and help to raise tax revenues. He demonstrates the statistics, according to which such step will save the government about $41.3 billion annually on costs spent on the enforcement of prohibition, out of which $8.7 billion will be saved if marijuana alone is legalized.
The expected tax revenue in case of drug realization accounts for $46.7 billion annually, where approximately $8.7 billion will be raised from the legalization of marijuana. With regard to this, the author points out the obvious benefits of marijuana legalization in at least some states like California that is overwhelmed with illegal marijuana growers, and, in the same time, faces a budget deficit. Still, the author presents opinions of politicians, lawyers and activists fighting against Proposition 19, which, they think, will cause harm to the community, boost law enforcement efforts, deteriorate public heath, and hazard the safety of roadways, schools, and workplaces (Glosh).Tony Newman, Drug Policy Alliance employee, claims to have dedicated his life to ending the government’s war on drugs, which he calls “disastrous”. He claims, that the majority of voters support the legalization of marijuana, and it is a major gain that four states have already legalized it. His rhetoric is passionate and radical, as he claims that locking people in cages for using drugs cannot be justified. He also calls the war on drugs “hypocritical”, as while 700,000 people a year are arrested for marijuana possession, there is no regulation on ads for legal drugs such as alcohol and pills, and political leaders repeatedly admit to using drugs.
The author also supports the argument that drug enforcement is an issue of racial injustice, as it is focused on mostly Black and Latino communities (Newman). The study conducted by the Drug Policy Research Center states that the effects from the legalization of drugs, marijuana in particular, depend heavily on the details, that is on the actual norms of legislature that will be adopted, as the Dutch system and …