Just Say Yes: An Argument For Drug Legalization This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   Just say no.

These three words have been permanently ingrained into our collective consciousness our entire lives. We have been force-fed the notion that illegal drugs such as cocaine, LSD, and marijuana are terrible societal and moral evils which must be eradicated from the face of the green earth. Our government has spent and will continue to spend billions of our precious tax dollars every year on the war against drugs. Every other TV spot is a public service announcement warning us against the dangers of drugs and every night on the news innumerable murders, muggings and burglaries are paraded in front of us, all attributed to - you guessed it - drugs.

And all of which, we are told, can be avoided if we do one simple thing: just say no. But let's be realistic. If you approach the typical poor teenager and offer him a thousand bucks a night hustling crack on the street, he's not going to just say no. He's going to become a dealer, and not because the drugs make him do it. He'll do it because he has no other choice. And the only reason Joe Junkie has to rob houses to get money for heroin is because his dealer keeps jacking up the prices, since there are no laws to prevent this. In fact, just about every evil attributed to drug abuse is actually brought about by some underlying social problem. And most of these problems can be blamed on our government, the same guys who are telling us to just say no.

There will always be drugs, and therefore there will always be people who will use them. Nothing we can say or do will change that. Therefore, we are presented with only one solution:

Legalize drugs.

This may seem like a very extremist point of view, and many of you will have a knee-jerk reaction against it, but hear me out. We can no longer continue to wage this futile and senseless war against drugs because there is no way that we can possibly win. No matter how much money we allow our government to waste on Coast Guard patrols and congressional committees, there will always be a demand for drugs, and therefore a supply. We must learn to give up struggling and accept drugs as a part of society.

However, this should not be regarded as a compromise. On the contrary, legalization could be of great benefit to our society. Consider:

1. The American drug dealer would become extinct. After all, why buy from a street hustler when you can get a cheaper, better-quality product at the nearest pharmacy?

2. Legally-produced narcotics would be subject to government regulation, thereby keeping the product purer than the average street junk and possibly reducing the chance of user overdose.

3. Without dealers to worry about, police would be left with more time to combat more serious crimes.

4. The legal production and sale of drugs could bring thousands of new jobs into the country.

5. Narcotics sold over-the-counter would be taxed, contributing millions of dollars to our sagging economy.

6. The billions of dollars we spend every year keeping drugs out of the country could be redirected into programs for the homeless, the preservation of the environment, better public education, drug prevention, and AIDS research.

It's about time we as Americans faced reality. Drugs are an undeniable part of our society; we cannot continue to fight against them. Legalizing drugs will cut down on street crime, strengthen our economy, and quite possibly improve our way of life.

The time has come to legalize drugs. The time has come to just say yes. n


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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This article has 3 comments. Post your own now!

Abovetheinfluence said...
Oct. 4, 2014 at 8:53 pm
Nice article. My stand of the issue is that I totally dissagree and that illegal drugs should continue to be outlawed in every state of America. My question to you is, Why in the world would illegal drugs become legal to buy and use if it has been scientifically proven that illegal drugs have no good benifits? Lets see the number of both (excluding medical uses, if any):   good: 0 bad: who knows the total, to many to tally   And now the effects of those illegal drugs (still e... (more »)
 
jimmydane34 said...
Jan. 3, 2011 at 11:34 pm
i totaslly agree with this arugment. i believe in the constitution.   when the constittuion states that if your actions do not effect others in harm or injury it is legal..(not actual Quote) so ironic becasuse if you think about it. your neighbor shooting heroin is less harmful then your neighbor smoking a cigerette due to second hand smoke and polluting the air...  GO USA!!
 
VLythia said...
Jan. 3, 2011 at 8:07 pm

I totally agree with this article. Saying drugs being illegal isn't doing anything to stop them. If anything, the world is in a meth-amphetamine epidemic right now, and has laws against it done anything to stop it? Making drugs legal would make these forbidden drugs safer for the users. And the argument"But they can kill you!" isn't legit either. Tobacco products are legal.

This was a brilliant, well-written article. Good job.

 
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