A drug is a substance that can influence the normal functioning of the body when consumed or introduced into the human body. A drug is not considered as a food substance as it has intoxicating effect on the user by affecting the nervous system of the user. A drug can also refer to a substance with medicinal value to the human body. Therefore, drugs can be used in the treatment and provision of relief when taken or introduced into the body. The definition of drugs is provided by the law of a given country or state (Balkin 85).
Drug use and abuse have been the most often vices in most countries. In this case, the jurisdiction of such states does not allow for the consumption of drugs. The fight against the performance enhancing drugs has dominated the athletic and sports world. Notably, some sportsmen and women use drugs to enhance their performances. This has led to the establishment of laws that govern drug use among sportsmen and women. These laws are often referred to as anti-doping laws.
There has been a debate among different stakeholders on whether to legalize or ban the use of drugs among citizens. The debate has been dominant in South American and the Caribbean states. In this respect, the debate has been centered on whether to legalize drugs such as the marijuana, which is common in this region. In the recent past, the Uruguayan president provoked a debate on drugs by advocating for legalization of the consumption of drugs in the region. He also called for the drug addicts to be regarded as people with health problems and not criminals (Cave, para. 2).
The issue of growing, selling, buying and using drugs is considered a crime in most countries. This offense can earn a jail term or a hefty fine as defined by the law of the country. The Mexican head of state also advocated for the legalizing of some drugs (“Mexico, General Debate, 67th Session”). However, this move will impact both negative and positive effects on the lives of the citizens. Some of the benefits of legalizing the drug in the country is that the government can earn revenue through taxation and awarding licenses to the sellers and suppliers of the drugs. The drug trade can also earn the country foreign exchange through export. Therefore, this can help to create jobs for the many citizens involved in the trade. Some drugs are known to possess medicinal value that can be used by health specialists (Balkin, 138).
Legalizing marijuana is viewed by many as a moral issue that greatly affects the lives of users and their families. The drug is known to affect the nervous system of users and the mental capability. The drug is also addictive. Those opposed to the legalization of marijuana argue that such a move will have negative social effects on society. It has been noted that drug use is an expensive lifestyle. In this case, the drugs are expensive to acquire and thus can lead to the depletion of resources among the addicts. Drug users are associated with laziness, and many are not responsible. In some instances, drug users may turn violent after using the drug (Evans & Berent, 19).
The heads of state of the central and South American region have been engaged in the debate on legalization of drugs. The Uruguayan and Mexican presidents have been vocal for the legalization of drugs due to the associated benefits. Nonetheless, although the drug trade has its positive effects on the economy, such trade should be controlled to mitigate the negative effects of the drug use.
Balkin, Karen. Drug Legalization. Farmington Hills, Mich: Greenhaven Press, 2005. Print.
Cave, Damien. South America Sees Drug Path to Legalization. 2012. Web.
Evans, Rod L, and I. M. Berent. Drug Legalization: For and against. La Salle, Ill: Open Court, 1992. Print.
“Mexico, General Debate, 67th Session”. The United Nations Web TV. New York, 2012. Web.