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Marijuana Legalization in Texas

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Mark espinoza

Marijuana legalization in Texas

Cedar valley college

Marijuana has gained a bad reputation as a gateway drug. Many Texans believe that the legalization of marijuana will affect the youth by allowing easier access and the health concerns that follow the drug. States such as Texas have envied the legalization of marijuana but, in the same way there are many benefits of legalizing the drug, these include medical uses and also the reduction of stress and illegal activity such as smuggling.

Before 1937 marijuana was once used as medicinal drug. In the 1900s, after the Mexican revolution, Mexicans began to cross the border into the United States. With them, they brought their culture and ways of life. As they migrated plants such as marijuana, as what the local Hispanics called it, found its way into the United States. In the English language it was more formerly known as cannabis, a substance that was in almost every medicine; this gave marijuana a bad reputation because immigrants were using “marijuana.” In an effort to control the illegal immigrants they tried to control their custom, thus the “Marijuana Tax Act of 1937” was passed “which effectively banned its use and sales” (Burnett, Reiman). While this law was ruled unconstitutional, “it was replaced with the Controlled Substances Act in the 1970’s which established Schedules for ranking substances according to their level of danger and potential for addiction” (Burnett, Reiman) . ”In 1996, California became the first state to approve the use of marijuana for medical purposes,” (Burnett, Reiman) making it controversial topic, having states wanting to follow California, and changing the mindset of current generations about the drug.


 Marijuana can be used as medicine to help with medical disabilities such as cancer and autism. For instance, a young teen has been using medical marijuana to reduce her side effects. After her dad gave her a dose he wrote “Sam was physically more relaxed and began initiating physical contact with the motivation being affection instead of aggression”(Autism and cannabis). California researchers have found that “Cannabinoids in cannabis interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system and act not only to regulate emotion and focus but also serve as a neuroprotective preventing the further degradation of brain cells(Autism and cannabis). Thus, proving marijuana can have some good uses, once it has been studied.

 Marijuana can also be used to replace painkillers and cause a reduction in overdoses in the state of Texas. A study found that states with medical marijuana laws on the books saw 24.8 percent fewer deaths from painkiller overdoses compared to states that didn't have such laws”(Ingraham). Majority of these states have replaced the use of painkillers with marijuana. A study was conducted on 473 adults and they found that “of the 473 adult cannabis users surveyed by the Centre for Addictions Research of British Columbia, more than 86 percent of respondents reported giving up one or more of the substances for pot”(Jaeger).  The reduction of deaths and choices in some individuals could further push the legalization of marijuana.

 Legalizing marijuana could cause a reduction in illegal activities for the state of Texas. After looking into crime rates in all 50 states researcher found that “for some forms of violence — homicide and assault — we found partial support for declines after the passing of this legislation”(Ferner). After searching even further these researchers found that alcohol may be the substance responsible for the current crime rates. If alcohol can be legal and cause crime rates to excel but marijuana is illegal but if it was legal could cause crime rates to reduce especially in the state of Texas. Within the state of Texas there tends to be a lot of war on drugs. Mainly because texas borders the Mexico border. Many gangs from Mexico bring war and drugs to the state of Texas. However, if we legalize marijuana then it'll be one less drug to be crossing the border illegally.

With the increase of legalization of marijuana we have seen many try to argue against it, especially the state of Texas. Texas governors have even come forward saying they are against the legalization of marijuana. With this we typically see two arguments against its legalization, the effect on the youth and the health concerns following the drug.  Many believe that young marijuana users academics will decrease due to lack of care. Marijuana has been known to relieve users of stress and worries, many worry that students will use it to escape school stress and use as a way to forget about school. This new lack of care for education will bring upon bad academic behaviors throughout the youth in school. “Another finding of interest was the dramatic increase (from 4% in 1992 to 24% in 1996) in marijuana use among African American students”(barrett,mark). This study was conducted in the state of Texas and had solid evidence of why marijuana should not be legalized in the state of Texas.  Besides issues in school many believe the youth cannot physically handle it. Marijuana which is known to increase rate of cancer and destroy brain cells has many worries. Many also go to the fact the brain isn’t fully developed until mid-twenties this raises many concerns to the percent of youth smoking marijuana now. According to (Malik Burnett) “marijuana has chemicals that are toxic to the brain and they harm and kill brain cells”. Thus making marijuana very dangerous for undeveloped brains of the youth. To link this with the education of the youth ( Malik Burnett ) stated that” marijuana can cause variation in IQ amongst people”. The marijuana being the factor causing this variation many do not want to legalize it for that reason. Academic performance only gets worse depending on rate in which the user smokes. If used daily according to (Friese, Bettina, Grube 6) the” intellectual level of the user will be reduced”. For many people this is more of reason to keep marijuana illegal.



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