Cannabis, or cannabis legale, grass and weed, is a drug that is now legal in some U.S. states. Others are looking into possibly legalizing cannabis, but are concerned about the cons as well as the pros of legalizing the drug.
What are some of the pros and cons of legalizing cannabis, and is it a drug that can have some very useful health benefits?
Cannabis has many health benefits — One of the big pros of legalizing cannabis is that it has many health benefits. From helping fight cancer, to a treatment for Alzheimer’s, migraines, arthritis and rheumatism pain, insomnia, controlling muscle spasms due to Multiple Sclerosis, a treatment for PTSD and any number of other things, smoking or taking cannabis can be very beneficial for your health.
Less money for organized crime — Much of the cannabis that is sold in the United States today comes via various criminal groups. If you make cannabis legal, however, these groups either lose the illegal funding stream they used to have and so are forced to shut down, or they become legal themselves. Either way, making cannabis legal means less money for organized crime and the violence that comes with that.
Safer to buy — As most people buy their cannabis from illegal sources, they have no way of knowing what kind of quality they are buying or if they are buying pure cannabis. Make the drug legal, however, and cannabis will have the same safety controls imposed on it as any other legal purchase.
Lower prices — As cannabis is used by many people with health problems, including those with cancer, if it was made legal prices would naturally fall. This would make it more affordable for people who need it for their health.
It is a gateway drug — One of the cons of legalizing cannabis is that, in some cases, cannabis can be a gateway drug, meaning it starts the users down a path towards the use of much harder and more dangerous drugs like cocaine and prescription drugs.
Worsening lung health — Another con to legalizing cannabis is that, just like smoking cigarettes, smoking cannabis can damage your lungs. This can be avoided, however, by baking the cannabis into baked goods like cakes, brownies and cookies.
An increase in stoned driving — People do drive while high from smoking cannabis, and this could increase if it was legalized. That being said, alcohol is legal and tens of thousands of people a month drive drunk after drinking it.
In other words, the same people who would drive drunk are likely to be the same people that would drive high.
An increase in depression? — While studies still need to be done to support this theory, some medical professionals do say they notice an increase in depression in those who regularly use cannabis.
This can also be because people who already suffer from depression use cannabis to help them feel better, so this may not actually be a con but more of a pro.