Legalizing marijuana is an issue that has been thrown around in the United States for many of years. Marijuana has many names, such as weed, ganja, hemp, cannabis, Mary Jane, and grass. Marijuana is widely used in the United States and over one hundred million people have admitted to smoking marijuana. Yet, the drug is considered a schedule one drug and is illegal according to federal laws. Some people believe that marijuana should be legal for medical uses. Others think the drug should never be made legal and the idea should never be brought up.
Many researches have been made to indicate that marijuana can be used for medical purposes. The drug was first made illegal in the United States during the 1930’s. However, many states such as California, Oregon, and North Dakota have been decriminalizing marijuana and even legalizing marijuana for medical purposes only. Decriminalizing marijuana would mean that small amounts of marijuana, anything under seven grams, would be considered legal. Possession and use of the drug is still punishable by federal laws but in these certain states the state drug laws are taken less serious.
Pros and cons of marijuana are thrown around every day, whether marijuana should be legal is up to the United States government. The first ad is by the Rigo Design Studio. The ad has James Franco, a famous actor from the Spiderman trill logy, pretending to hit a marijuana joint. The purpose of the ad is to show people that marijuana did not ruin Franco’s career and the overall goal is to get marijuana legalized. The ad says that legalizing marijuana would help the economy and that jails would not be as crowded.
In 2009 the government arrested over eight hundred thousand people for marijuana related crimes. (Norml. org) People have estimated ten billion dollars of tax payers’ money is used to jail these marijuana users and to enforce marijuana prohibition. (Norml. org) The ad uses a movie star to glorify marijuana and to basically say James Franco is smoking marijuana why not everyone else. This ad is not as effective as the ad could have been because the ad is telling kids if they smoke marijuana then they could become famous.
Also, Franco does a lot more than just acting, such as writing short stories, poems, painting, and art shows on both coasts, this shows that he does not have much time for smoking marijuana. (NPR. org) Overall, the ad gives good information about the advantages of legalizing marijuana, but is not that effective because the ad does not tell people how hard Franco worked to become a famous actor. The second ad is by NORML. ORG and has a picture of President Obama that covers most of the advertisement. The ad has a green tint that appeals to marijuana users.
The overall purpose of the ad is to get marijuana legalize. The ad uses Obamas’ catchy line Yes we can with nabis at the end making the can into cannabis, which is another name for marijuana. NORML had no reason to put President Obama on the ad because Obama’s drug policies never suggested that he would legalize marijuana. However, in a speech given in 2004 President Obama stated, “I think the war on drugs has been a failure, and I think we need to rethink and decriminalize our marijuana laws. ” He also said that he does not believe in the legalization of marijuana.
After the video of the speech was released the Obama campaign made a complete U-turn and stated that he does not support eliminating penalties for possession and use of marijuana. (Prorev. com) The main reason people thought he would legalize or decriminalize marijuana is because of the simple fact that he is black and had admitted to smoking marijuana as a kid. Overall, this ad does not do an outstanding job in promoting marijuana because the only people the ad appeals to are the people that already use marijuana. The third advertisement, also by Norml. rg, has the text Honk if you Inhale in big green letters and a pot leaf in the middle of the page. Bellow the leaf there is the text Stop arresting responsible pot smokers and Please Support the NORML Foundation. The purpose of the ad is to get more people to support the NORML foundation, whose overall goal is to get marijuana legalized. The ad in a way is pear pressuring people into smoking marijuana because the ad is telling people that everyone is smoking marijuana, why not you. Since, around twenty-five million Americans have smoked marijuana in the past year nd more than fourteen million people smoke on a regular basis (Norml. org) Marijuana is considered the most popular illicit drug in the world and has reported hundreds of millions of users. (Understanding Marijuana: a New Look at the Scientific Evidence page 271) The ad is also trying to get marijuana decriminalized for responsible marijuana users. Decriminalizing marijuana basically means taking responsible marijuana users out of the criminal justice system. (Norml. org) The overall goal of the NORML ad is to obtain support from responsible pot smokers.
The first anti-marijuana ad titled Devil’s Harvest is a vintage ad and was released in 1940. The ad has a man and women smoking marijuana in a bedroom. The ad uses the text, “A GOOD GIRL until SHE LIGHTS A REEFER” in all caps to vilify marijuana. The text, The Truth about Marijuana and The Smoke of Hell, is used at the bottom of the ad to say if people smoke marijuana then they will go to hell. In a way the ad is comparing marijuana to the devil because the ad is saying that marijuana smoke is from hell. The ad is very blunt in saying that if people smoke marijuana then they are not good people and will do bad things.
The woman’s dress is falling off of her which indicates that when a girl smokes marijuana than she will be sleazy. They use the woman’s dress falling off to steer people away from marijuana. The ad makes women think before smoking marijuana because the ad suggests that if they smoke then they will sin. All in all, the Devil’s Harvest ad does a good job in vilifying marijuana and making people realize that marijuana is not as good as people make marijuana out to be. The second anti-marijuana ad by Gordon Wiebe was released in January 2008 by Above the Influence.
Above the Influence has been running anti-marijuana campaigns since 1998 to reduce and prevent youth drug use. (MediaCampaign. org) A joint at the bottom of the page is burning and producing a weird smoke cloud. The smoke cloud is divided into three different bubbles. The first Bubble at the top has True or False in big white letters. However, the letters F and a in false are orange and a sun is in the background. The sun could be used to show that behind the dark clouds of marijuana there is a sun, which represents success. The other two bubbles look like lungs and ave questions that show the consequences of smoking marijuana. The fact that the bubbles look like lungs shows kids that marijuana can hurt your lungs and turn them black. The ad is showing kids that if they smoke marijuana than they will not be able to play sports or set an example for their younger siblings. Also, the smoke produces creepy arms and hands that are holding a kids head and a soccer ball. The ad does this to make marijuana look scary and to make smoking marijuana seem vicious. The ad looks dark and creepy to put down marijuana.
Also, the ad is designed to be taken as a quiz and to get people to go to above the influences’ website. The final anti-marijuana ad by above the influence has a marijuana leaf that is made into a maze. The stem of the leaf is designed to be the start of the maze. The purpose of the ad is to let people know that marijuana is not an easy task. The ad is clever because the ad makes people use their imagination and to realize that there is not an end to the maze. Most people probably did not even realize that the maze could not be finished before they began the maze.
Since, the maze does not have an end the ad is ultimately saying that there is no way to succeed if you smoke Marijuana. Marijuana is a mind altering drug that changes how the brain works. (Abovetheinfluence. com) The ad makes people think before starting a path down marijuana because once a person starts to smoke marijuana they are stuck in a maze. The fact that the marijuana leaf is made into a maze that never ends, makes this ad more effective because the ad is showing a side of marijuana that most people do not think about are the risks.
The risks of smoking marijuana are impaired judgment, memory loss, lowered motivation, addiction, increased aggression, anxiety, and panic attacks. (Abovetheinfluence. com) Overall, this ad does a good job of making people realize that marijuana is a trap and once people have started there is no way back out. Legalizing marijuana is an issue that will be around until the issue is resolved or better facts are found to represent both sides. People will always support the legalization of marijuana and people will always be against legalization. The facts about marijuana are thrown around and ebated all the time, is marijuana good for people or is marijuana bad for people. Pros and cons of the drug suggest that the argument will be debated for many years and recently has been a top issue in certain states. Many people believe that legalizing marijuana would help reduce the United States debt by taxing the sale of hemp. Others think that legalizing marijuana would make people in the United States lazy and unmotivated. People have seen the effects of taking away something that the people want, such as alcohol. Now alcohol is legal at the age of twenty-one will marijuana in the future be the same.
“About Marijuana”. Norml.org. NORML. 07 Nov 2010 Web. 01 April 2011 Above the Influence. Advertisement. N.d Web. 1 April 2011 http://www.magnetreps.com/wp/1157 Above the influence. Advertisement. N.D Web. 30 March 2011 http://tps-report.org/tag/above-the-influence/ Above the Influence. Advertisement. 08 July 2008 Web. 01 April 2011 http://www.magnetreps.com/wp/1157 Devil’s Harvest. Advertisement. 1936 Web. 28 March 2011 http://www.flickr.com/photos/tom1231/3679789491/ “Drug Facts” Abovetheinfluence.com. National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign. Web. 04 April 2011. http://www.abovetheinfluence.com/facts/drugs-marijuana.aspx# Earleywine, Mitchell. Understanding Marijuana: a New Look at the Scientific Evidence. Oxford, New York Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. “James Franco Doesn’t Limit Himself To Just Acting” NPR.org N.P 15 Oct 2010. Web. 03 April 2011. http://tierneylab.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/12/obamas-drug-policy/ NORML. Advertisement. 1999 Web. 30 March 2011 http://norml.org/index.cfm?Group_ID=4930 NORML. Advertisement. 2010 Web. 01 April 2011 http://stash.norml.org/ask-obama-top-100-questions-about- ending-drug-war-legalizing-marijuana “Obama’s many views on marijuana”. prorev.com. N.P Web. 04 April 2011. http://prorev.com/2008/02/obama’s-many-views-on-marijuana.html Rigo Design Studio. Advertisement. June 2010 Web. 30 March 2011 http://clubfbi.com/marijuana/