How Marijuana Legalization Would Effect Indiana University

A jar of legal marijuana

Drug abuse is running rampant across the country. It has increased in intensity and with harsher drugs. While government and local efforts are constantly evolving in an attempt to reduce the number of drug addicts, the problem still continues to rise. In the wake of the new century, marijuana has risen to the tops of heated debates. Medical research has continued to prove the benefits of marijuana in treating various issues and diseases, while hard-lined conservatives continue to turn their back on the possible advantages of marijuana use. Several states have recently passed bills that allow the use of medical marijuana, at the same time others have allowed for the legal sale and purchase of marijuana for recreational use. Colorado a pioneer in medical and recreational use of marijuana has seen a decrease in government spending on low grade crime and processing, while profiting from an exponential boost in their local economy; as a result of taxation of the drug. Indiana is a state that does not allow marijuana use at all.

Indiana University

Indiana University, like any other University or college, is constantly battling with students smoking marijuana. The Indiana University police department has increased drug violation arrests of 34% since 2011, while alcohol related violations have dropped 25%. Of the phone calls that are made to the campus police, only 23% result in arrest. It simply takes the police force too long to find the source of the smell. Unfortunately for police enforcement they are fighting an uphill battle. The opinion and attitude toward marijuana use has been transforming quickly over the last several years. As new reports continue to present the benefits of marijuana and other states decriminalize or legalize marijuana, citizens in other states begin to feel laissez-faire about the issue, and Southern Indiana is not excluded.

Penalties

While the use of marijuana in Indiana is still considered illegal the feeling around campus is more relaxed. The police force are getting tired of chasing down a smell through dorm/fraternity rows only be cite a student with a citation. A student who originated from a marijuana state can have difficulty adjusting to the new regulations. There are more than 23 states that allow for marijuana use in one way or another and for students who come from those states and use the drug as a substitute for dangerous prescription medications the adaptation can be difficult. Most students are given a B-misdemeanor charge, citation, and a note home to their parents, but the real issue is the stress and anxiety they receive when having to deal with a police officer at their door. Indiana University welcomes an average of 200-plus students from California, a marijuana state, a year. Indiana has some of the harshest marijuana criminalization penalties. Individuals in possession of 30 grams can face up to a year in jail and a $5,000 fine. Local police force claims that dealing with marijuana issues is much easier and safer than alcohol. Some officers have never dealt with a violent marijuana case, while alcohol is almost always to the root cause of violence and disturbances.

Marijuana Legalization

Marijuana legalization would change the way Indiana University’s environmentally feel. Marijuana use on college campuses will never stop or even be reduced. College students are at a time in their lives where they want to experiment and do a certain level of rebelling. Marijuana legalization in Indiana would make the job of campus police much easy. Instead of chasing around ‘pot-heads’ locked in their dorm rooms, they could be helping out in reducing alcohol related accidents, injuries, and abuses. College students would be relieved of the ongoing pressure from possible law enforcement issues. While marijuana is legal in many states, it is still a drug and should be treated as such. Anyone who believes that they or someone they know is abusing a substance should seek professional help immediately. Marijuana is considered a lesser class drug than say heroin or cocaine, it is still a drug and is addicting. Getting help for addiction only requires one phone call and conversation.

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