Could The Legalization Of Marijuana Save Our Economy?

1843 words - 8 pages

The legalization of marijuana has the potential to bring our economy back to life if it were to be legalized. There are a number of ways in which legalization could improve the economy. We could use the revenue from taxes on marijuana to provide for a better quality of life for Americans in need. Legalizing marijuana would also save us money by cutting the cost of putting someone in jail for harmless marijuana related charges that waste tax money. Also it would put more money into circulation by keeping the profits off the black market and into the legal and taxed market. With an estimated twenty-five million active marijuana smokers in America that consume nearly thirty-one million pounds of marijuana each year, we are missing out on extreme revenue that this country cannot afford to go without for much longer (Krulick).
Specialized government funded programs such as Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) cost around $7 billion and are in danger of being defunded to save money (Whitehouse). Marijuana tax revenues exceed $6 billion and would help less fortunate women in need of assistance when they are raising a child. On the state level Alabama has a projected profit of $8.9 million in tax revenues alone from Marijuana sales (Miron). States could increase pay or set up a better retirement for police, firemen, teachers, or any other underpaid public service. Also, the medical sales of marijuana would create an alternative source of natural medicine that has less harmful side-effects than some prescription medicines. Another more practical use for the cannabis plant itself is “hemp”. Hemp is another variety of cannabis that is used for mainly for its fiber, oil, and seeds. The fiber can be used to make anything from clothes to cars as Henry Ford shows us with his 1941 car made of hemp fibers mixed with other types of plant fibers, and ran off of hemp biofuel (Lance). Andrea Bertoli says in her article on ways hemp can be used that, “Hemp fiber can produce 250% more fiber than cotton on the same amount of land with little or no pesticide use”. The oil can be used for biofuel, as Ford used. The seeds can be used for baking and are packed with protein and omega fatty acids (Bertoli). She also states that, “The hemp industry could be ten times bigger than the legal marijuana industry.” Given the opportunity through legalization, marijuana could better our lives by helping our economy and even our planet.
The cost of marijuana prohibition is a complete waste of tax payer’s money. When looking at the number of marijuana related deaths, there are none to be found. When looking at the annual rate of alcohol related deaths, it comes to 25,692 (McVay). The difference is quite observable. The priorities of our country and citizens against marijuana need to read the facts. We could save as much as $5.3 billion at the state and local level alone by cutting the cost of marijuana prohibition. At a federal level we could save $2.4 billion. Combining this with the...

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