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Why Marijuana should be illegal - Essay Example

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They also tend to become bored easily and experience frequent emotional highs and lows, all potential factors in teenage drug use. Experimenting with drugs such as marijuana causes many…
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Why Marijuana should be illegal
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Marijuana Should be Illegal Introduction Young persons are naturally curious, one of the reasons given for experimenting with drugs. They also tend to become bored easily and experience frequent emotional highs and lows, all potential factors in teenage drug use. Experimenting with drugs such as marijuana causes many adverse effects especially in the case of developing youths. Marijuana use increases the chance that students will become pregnant, contract a communicable disease, perform poorly in school and attempt suicide.
Sexual Activity
The interrelation between marijuana use among teenagers and an increase of sexual activity is a widely accepted fact by researchers and the public alike. Many studies have consistently demonstrated a correlation between risky sexual behavior and marijuana use by the same students. Marijuana users are more inclined to take risks than do students that do not use it and other drugs. This may be an obvious statement but a propensity to take risks with their health combined with a loss of inhibitions while on drugs and the need of all teenagers to be accepted by their peers leads to an increased level of sexual activity. This problematic scenario also increases the likelihood of students having sex at an earlier age, having multiple sexual partners and decreases the chances that they will use contraception than those that do not use drugs. “Teens who have used marijuana are four times more likely to have been pregnant or to have gotten someone pregnant than teens who have never smoked pot” (The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, 1997).
Drugs and School
Ironically, schools are havens for marijuana available for the asking. Parents and teachers seem oblivious and are evidently powerless to control this disturbing situation. No one can deny that using marijuana can cause adverse effects to the user of any age but the effects to the teenager are especially damaging. Teenagers are in a much more vulnerable situation than are adults as they are still developing in every aspect of life. Unfortunately, it remains this group that has the most access to drugs as schools have become prolific drug outlets. The vast majority of 10th graders in the U.S., for example, claim they can easily purchase marijuana (78 per cent). Teenagers quickly learn that they can readily obtain marijuana in addition to other more exotic drugs to a somewhat lesser extent. Marijuana use often leads to other drugs. Drug abuse is costly to teenagers in many physical, mental and emotional ways. (Ault, 2001).
Suicide
Teenagers experience more emotional fluctuations than do younger children or an adult which explains why the suicide rate is higher in that group. Teenagers that use drugs such as marijuana are more likely to attempt suicide. Teenagers that experience emotional problems to a higher degree than others have a greater propensity to consider suicide and to use drugs. Marijuana could possibly magnify a pre-existing emotional problem and “may impair the judgment of teens considering suicide, making suicide attempts more likely” (Shaffer et al, 1996).
Conclusion
The teenage years are when people transition from innocent children to socially savvy adults. During this period, most have feelings of insecurity as they are developing at a rapid pace both psychologically and physically. The need to belong to a group is strong during this time and, combined with the fact that they do not yet possess the decision-making wisdom of adults, often leads to poor choices including opting to use marijuana.
References
Ault, Alicia. (2001). “Students Get Drugs at School, Study Shows.” Prevent Disease. Reuters Health. Retrieved November 24, 2009 from Shaffer, D.; Gould, M. S.; Fisher, P.; Trautment, P.; Moreau, D.; Kleinman, M.; & Flory, M. (1996). “Psychiatric Diagnosis in Child and Adolescent Suicide.” Archives of General Psychiatry. Vol. 53, pp. 339-348.
(The) National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse. (1997). Substance Abuse and the American Adolescent: A Report by the Commission on Substance Abuse Among American Adolescents. New York. Read More
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