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Beginner Series: The Argument for Legal Marijuana

legalization of cannabis in Canada
legalization of cannabis in Canada

With the recent legalization of cannabis in Canada, more and more retail cannabis stores and online marijuana dispensaries are being established to support this growing industry. Oftentimes, communities are at odds with such operations as they believe cannabis to be a harmful narcotic which will only bring crime to their neighbourhoods and misfortune to those who use it, yet how many of these cynics are truly educated enough on the topic to made such assumptions?

It is interesting to note that approximately 40% of the population has admitted to using marijuana. Given those numbers, it is important to point out that there has never been a single account of death caused by a cannabis overdose, however, death from prescription drugs and alcohol—legal narcotics, is a common occurrence. With legalization in Canada and ease of access through retail stores and from online marijuana dispensaries the usage of cannabis is becoming more common and though its use is safer than legal drugs, it is still frowned upon. A 2010 study published in The Lancet quoted a team of experts in the United Kingdom who determined the use of marijuana as less harmful than that of alcohol and cigarettes combined.

Contrary to popular belief, cannabis is not as addictive as we have been led to believe. Marijuana dependency only comes in at about nine to ten percent of adult users while cocaine dependency is at approximately 20 percent, heroin at 25 percent and tobacco at 30 percent. With the exception of tobacco these other drugs are not as highly regulated as legal cannabis is in Canada when purchased from the local shop or online marijuana dispensary where each use of these illicit drugs can lead to a life ending event.

Where drugs such as tobacco, alcohol, cocaine and heroin, among others, may cause more harm that good, cannabis when used in moderation can help alleviate maladies. Marijuana has long been used for medicinal purposes and when prescribed in conjunction with other treatments can help improve the everyday life for those suffering from a number of conditions and aliments. Brick and mortar stores as well as online marijuana dispensaries in Canada carry a variety of cannabis strains as well as cannabis-based products which could be customized for any user.

Up until recently, it was still illegal to purchase and use cannabis in Canada. The negative stigma of obtaining and using marijuana no doubt influences the opinions held by society as a whole worldwide. Though cannabis has a long and storied history, its overall portrayal in society has not been positive. Brick and mortar retail dispensaries are spurned and mail order marijuana websites in Canada are forced to package orders discreetly as customers are concerned with nosey neighbours. Though marijuana abuse can cause significant harm to users, the same can be said of all drugs. With legalization, a governing body oversees the production and distribution of cannabis where quality control measures are in place, making it more prudent to legalize than not. As retail stores and online marijuana dispensaries in Canada fall under government jurisdiction, this provides a measure of safety for those who choose to incorporate cannabis in their lives.

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