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For many decades now the debate as to whether or not marijuana should by legalized has raged on The intensity expressed by marijuanas opponents and the harsh punishments given to marijuana offenders cannot be explained by a simple concern for public health In recent years paraplegics cancer patients epileptics people with AIDS and people suffering from multiple sclerosis have been imprisoned for using marijuana as a medicine The attack on marijuana has in reality become more of a cultural war than anything a moral crusade in defense of traditional American Values if you will The laws that are being used to fight marijuana are now causing far more harm to those values than the drug itself In order to eliminate marijuana use state and federal legislators have sanctioned a tremendous increase in prosecutional power the emergence of a class of professional informers and the widespread confiscation of private property by the government without trial The long prison sentences given to growers and dealers have pushed marijuana prices skyward creating a domestic industry whose annual revenues now rival those of cotton soybeans or corn Some of the opponents to the legalization of marijuana include the DEA AMA American Glaucoma Society American Academy of Opthalmology and the American Cancer Society These entities as well as others against the legalization of marijuana argue that the entire drug problem would become more severe if consumption were legalized Their reasons for opposition revolve around several key elements adressing the proposed harm that marijuana can impose Opponents have stated that marijuana causes brain damage damages the reproductive system suppresses the immune system leads to harder drugs is much more dangerous than tobacco flattens human brainwaves and may lead to death Arguing that the entire drug problem would become more severe if marijuana consumption were legalized opponents to the proposal believe that current attempts to restrict the supply of and demand for marijuana have resulted in a lower level of consumption
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