Well, the first legal marijuana auction was a success. (link)
Scrolling through articles on various news websites, this was what caught my eye. Something that for most of my life has been tabooed thanks to President Bush’s War on Drugs is now being sold through the Government. It just feels… odd. “Drugs are bad” is a statement I’ve heard many times by parents and parents, and marijuana is classified as a drug. Constant talk about the effects of the classified “drugs” makes it seem a little odd to teenagers like me (I’m assuming) that one of the most well-known is considered acceptable.
Being a Senior in High School, I believe that our education on marijuana has been slightly warped. Bush was President from 2001 to 2009 and was running a successful campaign against “bad drugs”. Through grade school and junior high, I sat through constant drug talks through school and with parents. I never thought twice about whether drugs were actually that bad or not. Constant talk about marijuana being the gateway drug to worse drugs and a rougher life. It became a joke amongst my friends and I in lower and middle school. Something that we were afraid of, yet there was a burning interest in some because of it’s danger. Through Bush’s presidency, approximately “40,000 parlamilitary-style SWAT raids on Americans every year” (drugpolicy.org).
And now, being the High Schooler that I am, I see this article (kgw.com). While looking for an answer as to whether or not marijuana is not as bad as I have been educated to perceive it to be, I noticed that everyone is biased on the subject. Drugabuse.gov helps you “make smart choices and be your best self—without drugs”. Drugpolicy.org says that marijuana is helpful as an “exit drug, helping people reduce or eliminate their use of more harmful drugs by easing withdrawal symptoms”. You can probably tell which organization is for and which is against the legalization of the drug.
Marijuana was recently legalized in my home state of Oregon. Personally, I’ve never smoked marijuana, and I am against the legalization of it. Maybe it’s something to do with the oddness I feel because of my past education. However, I feel my stance is mostly because of my interior struggle with the acceptance that marijuana will be legalized the same day my son or daughter will be born. My kids will grow up in a world where marijuana is as legal as alcohol is to us. I’m just not ready to be so acceptive of something that has been very distant from my life. I’m afraid of our next generation building a society of stoners who contribute to a less diligent America. Again, I may be wrong, but I fear the unknown outcome.
Marijuana isn’t the same as other drugs. It isn’t a “narcotic”, and it isn’t nearly as life threatening. Marijuana also is helpful for medicinal purposes, and I’m all for the use of the drug for the right reasons. I just don’t believe in the legalization leading to more good than bad.