A number of movements to legalize the use of marijuana have been gaining steam lately. There are places in California
where it's already legal for medicinal purposes. Much of the American public now believes that the drug should be
legalized (40 percent according to a Rasmussen
Poll) but others are still concerned about health damage and other adverse affects.
Drug busts often trap young people in a flawed system that turns them into lifelong criminals.
Imagine an impressionable teenager who is tired of earning minimum wage, who hates living in a poor ghetto area,
or who needs to save money for college. He's offered the opportunity to make some decent money simply carrying some
drugs across town. Then he's busted. He's thrown in jail as part of a mandatory sentence. There, he spends his time
and becomes friends with many other delinquents. He gets meaner in jail since he has to defend himself in a rough crowd.
When he gets out of prison, his job and college prospects are
slammed because of a felony record and/or disruption of school. This just makes the resumption of a normal
crime-free life all the more difficult. Strapped for cash, he joins some of his new friends in a greater crime like
robbery. Suddenly, you have someone who has started down the road of being a lifelong criminal. This story may seem
farfetched, but it is all too real for some. The legalization of marijuana would remove another
temptation that could lead a young impressionable individual down the wrong road.