Why you should vote no on question 4

by Alex Solari, Staff Writer

Arguably the most controversial question on the ballot this year is Question 4, which asks: “Should marijuana be legal for recreational use in Massachusetts?” 

Here are the reasons why you should vote no on this question in November.

I will preface this article by saying that I do not necessarily agree with the points I’m making, and I am merely playing devil’s advocate. Regardless of my own beliefs, I think it’s fair that voters see both sides of an argument before making a decision. With that being said, let’s dive in.

One reason marijuana should be illegal is that although marijuana isn’t necessarily addictive, people can become incredibly dependent on the drug.

Marijuana has been known to help users’ mental health and physical pain, and because of this, some people may depend on the drug to help them through their issues.

However, the more a person uses marijuana, the more of a tolerance they have to it.

So, it takes more and more marijuana for a user to feel its effects if they use it frequently, which can cause financial issues, as the drug is not particularly cheap.

On top of these financial issues, this high tolerance can cause users to become aggravated and helpless since the drug is not allowing them to feel as good as they did when they first started.

Also, the state has made medical marijuana legal, and since marijuana can have positive effects on mental health and physical pain, the drug can be used to help patients.

This makes it so there is virtually no reason that the drug should be legal for recreational use.

Although the drug has been known to help with some individuals’ mental health, it can actually cause schizophrenia to develop. This risk is rare, however,  and will only occur if a person has a family history of schizophrenia.

But, of course, schizo-phrenia is a debilitating mental disorder and should be avoided at all costs. Just the small risk of this disorder developing is a reason why this drug should be illegal.

Another reason is that if marijuana becomes legal, there is a great chance that children will become exposed to the drug.

I think everyone can agree that minors should not be exposed to drugs, whether that be tobacco, marijuana, alcohol, etc. Even parents in Amsterdam are alarmed that their children are being exposed to marijuana, where marijuana has been legal for years.

Although Massachusetts residents would not necessarily smoke marijuana with children around or in public areas, there’s no knowing if this would happen, and if it does, this poses a huge risk to the youth of this state.

Perhaps another reason it should not be legalized is that smoking any substance can be damaging to your respiratory health, according to the Health Advisor website. According to the site, it can effect a person’s memory, judgment, IQ, and problem-solving skills.

Finally, the last reason why marijuana should be illegal is that more people will use marijuana if it becomes legal. All of the negative effects, such as the risk of schizophrenia, the threat it has to young children, the effect it can have on a person’s health, and the dependence a person can develop from the drug, can happen to all of the new people who will be using marijuana if it becomes readily available to the public.

Although the state cannot help that some people will use the drug and experience these negative effects, they can stop new people from using the drug if they have easy access to it.

Now that you’ve seen the reasons why marijuana should be illegal, you’ve got a lot to think about. So, this November, will marijuana become legalized in Massachusetts? It’s all up to you.

Photo Courtesy: jamaicaobserver.com


One thought on “Why you should vote no on question 4

  1. Even though you said you were playing devil’s advocate, it would be nice to see sources about the schizophrenia correlation. Look up the study done by Arseneault et al in the British Journal of Psychiatry. They found that psychosis is a complex mental disorder that cannabis COULD play a role in it’s onset in those with agenetic predisposition. They also, as in similiar studies, debate whether marijuana helped cause the onset or the patients were self-medicating to relieve their symptoms. It is a risk factor among those, for sure, but please don’t use the word ’cause’.

    I know this is a college newspaper. I know you views are different from what you wrote. But it’s 2016 and cannabis should be legal for all the people going through chemo, MS, IBS and many many other ailments. Veterans should have access through the VA and citizens should not be afraid of being arrested or having their kids taken away for a plant that is safer than alcohol. The tax on recreational should go to building communities and schools. To help those battling with opioid addiction.

    Nothing personal but there’s not much of a counter argument for legalization. The pros far outweigh the cons.


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