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Marijuana Use in Japan

In: Business and Management

Submitted By lapree
Words 462
Pages 2
In Japan the use of marijuana is illegal and highly punishable. In the United States the use of marijuana is illegal as well; although, the punishment is merely a misdemeanor or short a jail stay. According to Smith (2008), “Under Japan's Cannabis Control Law, possession of even small amounts of marijuana can garner a five-year prison sentence, and selling it can earn up to seven years” (para. 4). A survey conducted in San Francisco, California, revealed the percentage of respondents who used cannabis or marijuana throughout different countries. The number of respondents who currently used or had used in the United States resulted a 42% use rate, Germany was at an 18% use rate, whereas Japan had a surprising use rate of 1.5%. Some places throughout the United States have legalized marijuana for medical use only, but the Japanese culture only used it for making robes for the Buddhist, monk, and sumo wrestler loincloths. Japanese once viewed marijuana as a very scary and dangerous drug but the use of it has increased drastically within recent years, resulting in several drug busts and arrests. (1995-2011) announced, “Japan doesn't consider marijuana to be a "soft" drug. Penalties for possession and sale are the same as for heroin. An ounce of weed in Japan costs $2,000. That should give you some idea how dangerous it is to possess it there: price follows risk” (para. 1). The use of marijuana in Japan can ruin ones reputation because it represents a level of disrespect to the Japanese culture. College students who smoke marijuana faces expulsion from school immediately because of the no tolerance law. Some people in the American culture walks around reeking the smell of marijuana with no concerns of punishment. Narcotic agents are in high demand in Japan at approximately 10 new agents a year. Although the use of marijuana has increased in Japan, hard drugs such as heroin and methamphetamines have decreased. The leniency in the American laws allows Japanese students to come in contact with marijuana and smuggle it into their country to further educate others on how to use it. If marijuana offers one a longer lifespan, the government should legalize it for that specific reason and not for recreational use.

HAYASHI, Y. (2011). In Drug-Leery Japan, Arrests for Marijuana Are on the Rise. Retrieved from http:// (n.d.). Above the Influence. Retrieved from http:// (1995-2011). Getting Weed into Japan. Retrieved from
Smith, P. (2008). East Asia: Marijuana Use Sparks Concern in Japan. Retrieved from

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