Category Archives: RS 2

RS 2: Gold Rush or Gold Kush?

Healy, Jack, and Kirk Johnson. “Next gold rush: legal marijuana feeds entrepreneurs’ dreams.”, 19 July 2014 Web. 19 July 2015

Jack H, Is a news reporter for the New York Times, and has reported on a variety of topics. The other author in this article is Kirk Johnson. Kirk J, is the New York Times Seattle Bureau Chief, just like his partner in this article Kirk also has reported on multiple world wide topics. Just as the headline says, there is a boom in the marijuana legalization industry which is becoming a widely known investment opportunity.

With these writers working for the New York Times they have a more biased opinion towards the benefit of marijuana to the economy, because of their more business orientated view.To open the topic the authors talk about how marijuana is sweeping the nations “entrepreneurs and workers, investors and hucksters from across the country.” Leaving their secure jobs they have in their home towns to venture out in the states of Colorado and Washington to have a chance to get in to marijuana fast growing industry. Proving the fact that marijuana is the new gold rush of the 21 first century. Meaning there will be many opportunities for state and the nations economy to flourish.

They then state that ” Marijuana now legal for medical use in 23 states and Washington, D.C., and full legalization heading to the ballot in Alaska and Oregon, the size of the noncriminal marijuana industry is expected to grow to about $2.6 billion this year from about $1.5 billion last year.” So not only is pot helping in the economy aspect but also in the medical field . Most doctors tend to not believe in the use of weed because of their political stand point mostly from a conservative out look. Yet they can not look away from the facts. The use of medicinal marijuana does improve the well being of patients and have better effects than most prescribed drug medicines. With more and more states legalizing the medical use of marijuana we can only expect for the other states to follow suit.

The authors then say that ” The deck was stacked in the favor of richer corporate players. With banks still so leery of lending in the industry… financing choices for smaller entrepreneurs like him are few.” So also appealing to the smaller view point of first time business owners they show that they are getting over run by the big companies taking money from the smaller communities. which could be a bad thing for the economy as well having only the one percent gaining from marijuana and not all of us. Yes, bringing money to the economy, but is it to the right part?

This article and its information is very beneficial to my viewpoint because it provides a different aspect to the use of marijuana and its help to the economy. Showing that there are some benefits of the legalization of marijuana. Hopefully, this will show some insight to my peers and let them see the other side to legalization other than getting high and having fun. This article could also help in my peers arguments and debates over the drug.


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RS 2

Jonsson, Patrik. “How legal Marijuana is reshaping state economies”. Academic search complete. EBSCO publishing, 11 November 2014. Web. 19 July 2015.

In my high school economics class I learned that the fundamental principle of the government is to maintain a low unemployment rate.  This concept is highly encouraged in the article written by Patrik Jonsson because he discusses how the legalization of Marijuana can have a significant impact on U.S’s economy. Generally, the success of a country’s economy is a measure of country’s superiority. Many Marijuana supporters believe that Marijuana is able to provide a plethora amount of jobs. As a result, Jonsson reiterates the notion of innovation in the job market and the creation of thousands of jobs.

Additionally, Marijuana is able to provide millions of dollars in revenue because the demand for it is high. Also, Marijuana and tobacco are similar in regards to financial benefits because both products can produce successful business industries.  In the article, “how legal Marijuana is reshaping state economies”, Jonsson states “Colorado now sports 18,000 state –certified, or badged, pot industry workers eligible for jobs”. Only in Colorado Marijuana has constructed thousands of jobs, if Marijuana is legalized throughout the U.S the number of jobs would exponentially increase. In fact Marijuana has a lot of monetary value because when people get jobs they spend money thus shifting the economy in a positive manner. Additionally, Jonsson says the “average weekly wage of a marijuana industry worker is $555”. The annual salary of a Marijuana industry worker would be about $29,000, which is significantly higher than the average salary of $26,000 in the U.S. The legalization of Marijuana would increase the average salary and restructure state’s economies. Another economic truth to take into consideration from legalizing Marijuana is that it will have a domino effect which will affect other companies.  In the article Jonsson quotes a spokesman for the Marijuana policy project in Washington D.C. The spokesman states how “packaging and labeling companies “ will be affected financially from the legalization of Marijuana because these companies will be a vital component in the distribution of the product.

Furthermore, there are also false economic assumptions made by people about legalizing Marijuana. If Marijuana becomes a dependent source for economic gain the U.S will be in major turmoil.  Jonsson discusses the stock aspect of Marijuana and emphasizes that “despite the hype with populace, Marijuana stocks remain risky and mostly something to avoid now”.  If the stock value for Marijuana is delicate, the value for Marijuana in the future can have a significant drop.  Also in the business world people will do anything to seek profit and Jonsson examines this issue. He argues, “corporatized Marijuana industry will, like tobacco and alcohol giants, target younger American’s for profits”. This employs the desperate methods that large companies are willing to do for profits. Towards the end of the article Jonsson quotes a Harvard economist about the GDP of Colorado in which he says, “neither Colorado’s GDP nor wages have so far risen notably because of legalization”. Many Marijuana activists tend to overrate the economic upside of the legalization of Marijuana.


Ultimately, Jonsson supports legalization of Marijuana because he repeatedly highlights the positive impact Marijuana can have on the economy.  Although he discusses the positives and negatives of Marijuana, he displays greater support towards how the people will benefit economically from Marijuana.


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Research Summary 2

“Legal Marijuana: Should You be very Afraid?” Northwest Asian Weekly, 29 Mar 2014. Web. 19 July 2015.
An anonymous author of an Asian American newspaper called Northwest Asian Weekly, argues the question “Is legal marijuana a good thing or a bad thing?” The author’s stance is all for medical marijuana but he’s a bit iffy about marijuana being used for recreational purposes. His argument for why marijuana should be legalized for certain reasons seems to be promising.

The author begins the article, which is the main concern of the community, with the fear of “marijuana being addictive or becoming a gateway drug to harder and more damaging drugs, such as cocaine, meth, or heroin.” He continues to provide facts from his research from science journals that prove that “the addiction rate [for marijuana] is about 9 percent amongst those who’ve tried it.” Of course that is still a big number for those who oppose the legalization of marijuana but the article writer argues that the overall addiction potential for cannabis is less than that of caffeine, tobacco, cocaine, or heroin. The author also suggests pot will most likely be addictive not because it’s addictive, but because the people whom get addicted are “simply addictive people.”

The anonymous writer continues with the subject of marijuana being claimed as a gateway drug and points out that marijuana users whom moved on to harder drugs were assisted by their drug supplier. If marijuana were to become legal, it should be sold in a controlled environment to remove the criminal element involved with buying pot, says the author. He goes on with a scenario of how store clerks wouldn’t be trying to upgrade customers to drugs like cocaine if marijuana were to become legalized, and there’s no question that it will most definitely become legalized in the near future.

The author will agree that inhaling smoke on its own is harmful but so is eating junk food and consuming alcohol. What he’s aiming to inform the world is: it doesn’t make sense that marijuana is illegal but tobacco, alcohol, unprotected sex, potato chips, soda, driving, and a bunch of other stuff are legal and bad for you. At this point of the article, it is evident the author is accepting the idea that marijuana will eventually be legalized for recreational use and it will be in the hands of the user to use it responsibly the way they should with alcohol or any mind-altering substance.

Of course, the author has some concerns about marijuana being legalized for one reason mainly. “Like alcohol, [marijuana] (would be) very easy for adolescents to acquire.” He agrees with the idea that it legal marijuana wouldn’t be much different than alcohol, but he wants children to focus on school rather than have fun getting stoned; even then marijuana would be illegal for adolescents given their age. The author ends the article with the feel of a storm a brewing with the quote referring to the legalization of marijuana, “It’s coming.”

I have been concerned with whether or not marijuana was a gateway drug and have seen many articles that just said “it is” or “it isn’t” just in plain text, but this article actually went in debt with percentages which was helpful to understand and further my research. This article is also very helpful for those who are still indecisive on the subject of why marijuana legalization would be a good idea by telling people that they need to be more educated about marijuana because it is going to be legal and that they should quite fearing the inevitable truth.


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“Americans are not ready to make another mistake like we did with alcohol and tobacco.”

Ludwig, Mike. “Marijuana Legalization Debate Turns Heads on Campus.” Alt-Press Watch. Proquest, 28 Jan. 2008. Web. 19 July 2015.

Mike Ludwig is a writer and investigative reporter for Truthout, a nonprofit news organization in the United States. In this article, Ludwig writes about the “Heads vs. Feds” debate that took place at Ohio University. The debate was between Steve Hager, former editor for High Times (a magazine dedicated to the fight for marijuana legalization), and head of New York City’s Drug Enforcement Administration, Robert Stutman. They disputed the legalization of marijuana and its pros and cons on society.

Ludwig begins by saying that Hager motivated the students of Ohio University to become activists for the cause of legalizing marijuana and suggested that they become serious about it if they really want to see a change. According to Ludwig, Hager argued that the positive factors of marijuana outweigh the negatives and that marijuana can have valuable medicinal and spiritual properties. Ludwig reports that Hager thinks the black market encourages corruption and drug trafficking, and with the legalization of marijuana, the two of these would slow if not completely end.

According to Ludwig, Hager’s opponent, Stutman, disagrees and claims that marijuana should not be made legal. The reason behind this being that “legalizing marijuana validates a drug that intoxicates, impairs depth perception, and can lead to health problems such as lung cancer.” Seeing that marijuana can be tremendously harmful to our bodies, Stutman insists that America is not ready to repeat the mistake that was made with tobacco and alcohol.

Ludwig says that both Hager and Stutman agree that drug use on its own should not warrant a prison sentence, however, Stutman does not side with the use of marijuana recreationally. Hager concludes his argument with, “We have built the largest prison system in the world in my lifetime. I think doing 10 years in the prison system is worse for you than smoking a joint.”

I found this article helpful because the two debaters certainly have “the credentials for their respective positions,” as Ludwig states. Both of them are experts in their fields and have contrasting opinions on the legalization of marijuana that are more unique than those I had read in other articles. It was interesting to me to hear that DEA Officer Stutman believed that if marijuana were to become legal, it would add onto the list of mistakes America has made, the other two being alcohol and tobacco. I think this source could be of use to those who are thinking of writing on how marijuana affects society as a whole.


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Research Summary 2

Gray, Eliza. “The Drug Threat in Plain Sight.” Time. 21 Apr. 2014. Web. 19 Jul. 2015.

K2-Brand-Synthetic-MarijuanaEliza Gray, a Time Magazine reporter, investigates the substitute for pot which is synthetic marijuana.  Gray covers the the creation of the the designer drug, the various reason for it’s use and the harmful effects it has on people. More importantly, she highlights the law’s losing battle with keeping the drug of the street.

A claim made by Gray, synthetic marijuana is a becoming the most complicated drug problem beating out others such a cocaine and heroin. Gray attributes this to the drug being able to be sold in public because variants aren’t illegal although they attempt to mimic the “high” of cocaine and marijuana. To properly illustrate the harmful effects of synthetic marijuana Gray tells the story of Jesse, an 18 year old, that was smoking on the various names of synthetic marijuana, K2. According to the story Jesse’s mom notice there was something weird about her son but disregarded it when he told her it was “like legal marijuana.” Gray’s point here is that many young people think that it is a form of legal marijuana but don’t know all the chemicals that are sprayed into it. Along with this Gray marks the fact that these things along with the cheap price and not showing up on a drug test as the reason teens buy synthetic marijuana. Inversely, Gray remarks that while people argue about the status of marijuana as a gateway drug that it is relatively safe and a reason that the Colorado and Washington movements were successful. The author brings this up in order to emphasize the harmful effects such as vomiting, nausea and excessive heart rate.

Symptoms-of-Synthetic-Marijuana-Weed-UseGray also gives insight into how law enforcement struggles to keep the harmful substance off the streets, such as outlawing things that replicate the effects of marijuana and the many things that sellers do to keep it “legal.” What Gray is saying that while the government is making the chemicals that comprise the drug illegal the chemist tweak it so it can purport to be “legal.” Furthermore, Gray points out that most of the people buying synthetic marijuana, under names such as K2, Spice or anything else, are young teens that could not buy cigarettes or alcohol. Gray makes light of how even if marijuana is made legal it still wouldn’t be accessible to teens so they resort to the designer drug. Gray also noted that many people aren’t aware of the difference between pot and synthetic pot. Grey affirms this by saying that a man in Colorado, where weed is legal, bought some synthetic brand that had the same name as real brand. Gray  remarks that dealers are using the rise of legal, natural marijuana in order to push their deadlier version.

This article is helpful to me because I am going to write about the how synthetic and legal marijuana interact. In the article Gray writes about the harmful side of synthetic marijuana and how it’s troublesome. This article would not only be help to my peers seeking to write about synthetic marijuana but also to those looking to write about how other drugs effect and are effected by the legalization of marijuana.


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Marijuana Benefits the Brain and Economy

Brown Elizabeth. “Legalizing Medical Marijuana Has Benefits.” Factiva. U-Wire, 14 July 2015. 19 July 2015. <>.

Elizabeth Brown, a staff writer at the Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond, Louisiana, reports medicinal and economic benefits of marijuana. Her main focus is to relieve the unnecessary pain of those individuals that can be treated with cannabis. She agrees with critics that the legalization of marijuana will have many affects, however she argues these results will vary from person to person and may not negatively affect some at all. Brown believes that the United States will experience more advantages than disadvantages by making marijuana a legal drug.

Brown could be viewed as a bias source because she has a close friend that struggles with epilepsy. The writer learns from that the nervous system disorder epilepsy can be treated by Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a primary ingredient in a cannabis plant. This writer’s relationship with her friend impacts her position on the legalization of marijuana. Brown writes, “Knowing that [marijuana] could prevent her [friend] from experiencing the physical and emotional pain of seizures is extremely relieving”. She deliberately conveys actions that could go wrong for people like her friend if marijuana usage continues to be prohibited, actions as simple as driving or walking.

The writer does not ignore the negative effects that marijuana has on some individuals. In fact she writes that marijuana, “like any drug, it will affect people differently.” Again, Brown’s desire is that relief is provided to patients that suffer from mental disorders and other medical illnesses. In addition to alluding to the poor consequences of marijuana usage, she mentions that the legalization of marijuana would “reform criminal penalties for marijuana”, this in turn would grant economic gains. Brown evidently believes that giving these offenders an opportunity to start fresh will bring wealth to our nation.

According to Elizabeth Brown, “the economical benefits, beside the medicinal benefits, outweigh the possible risks of the use of marijuana.” The core of Brown’s argument is that marijuana would do more good than bad to our nation if it was legalized. She emphasizes this point by exploring medical and economic matters regarding marijuana. She explains how smoking marijuana could save epileptic patients from having seizures at inopportune moments and how it could decrease the accidents of others that have mental illnesses. Brown also describes how the United States could better the economy by amending laws that penalize offenders for possessing marijuana. These changes would ultimately bring in an increasing flow of money into our nation.

This source is valuable to my research because it provides another viewpoint on whether or not marijuana’s effect on the brain is beneficial to the economy of our nation. Unlike the last source that I researched, this one highlights the positive repercussions of marijuana usage. It allows the readers to develop their own opinion on marijuana’s overall medical and economic contributions. If other students that are researching the medical effects of marijuana are looking for a genuine argument, then this source would be excellent because the writer’s bias position makes the argument more sincere. Elizabeth Brown’s biasness enhances her stance on why she believes legalized marijuana has benefits.

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