The Need to Modify Laws Legalizing Recreational Use of Marijuana


Speech Preparation Outline- Persuasive

The purpose of the Module 15 speech assignment is for students to persuade audience members to support their claim about a policy issue (local, state, regional, national, or international/global). Students will incorporate research-based evidence about the issue to determine if a policy needs to be enacted, modified, or banned (i.e. student’s claim). Using Monroe’s Motivated Sequence, students will incorporate elements of: Attention, Need, Satisfaction, Visualization, and Action in order to advocate for the policy change. Refer to Module 15 for details.

The purpose of this assignment is to prepare for the persuasive speech. In this writing assignment you will utilize the process used to develop speech content, including, but not limited to: selecting a topic, determining the specific purpose, developing content areas, and identifying credible research.


  1. Research and select a topic on a policy that needs to be enacted, modified, or banned (local, state, regional, national or international/global).
  2. Provide the following:

Topic selection on a question of policy:

Specific Purpose:

Thesis/Central idea:

Questions based on the thesis to determine areas of research for gathering materials and speech elements (Attention, Need, Satisfaction, Visualization, Action)

Potential resources (minimum of 3 credible sources):

Potential Visual aid(s) to be incorporated into speech:

Sample paper

The Need to Modify Laws Legalizing Recreational Use of Marijuana

Specific Purpose: To inform the audience of the dangers of legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes.

Thesis/Central Idea: Legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes will significantly increase its use, notwithstanding the potential harmful consequences and the possibility of addiction, especially among the adolescents.


  1. Does marijuana impair learning among individuals?
  2. Does marijuana cause psychosis?
  • What are the long-term impacts of marijuana use?
  1. Could legalization of recreational marijuana increase its use among adolescents?

Recent findings indicate that marijuana has significant health impacts on the mental and physical well-being of individuals, and especially those in the adolescent age bracket (Caldera et al. 268; Jager et al. 565). Users may exhibit certain psychiatric symptoms and as such, record higher mental health visits to psychiatrists. Marijuana users report higher levels of anxiety and depression compared with non-users. In addition, marijuana users report more physical health problems and poorer quality of life compared with non-marijuana users.

Legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes will largely increase the problem of drug abuse in the society. The risk is even higher among adolescents, whose brain is still under development. According to Caldera et al., frequent use of marijuana contributes to neuropsychological deficits (268). The neuropsychological deficits may have negative consequences on associative learning, verbal learning, and lead to problems in attention and alertness. Apart from the mental health effects, frequent marijuana use contributes to a host of physical health problems. Common health effects associated with marijuana use include diseases of the liver such as hepatitis C, heart diseases, lung diseases including cancer, vasculature, and among others.

Vast literature available documents the negative impacts of marijuana use on the brain. Using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technology, Jager et al. (561) found that marijuana use has significant impacts on the brain function. Specifically, adults who smoked marijuana recorded overactive working memory, indicating brain activity impairment by marijuana and hence the compensatory action of the brain. Apart from the mental health and physical health impacts, another serious problem lies with the use of marijuana. The study by Jager et al. (561) indicates that early marijuana use increases the risk of developing substance abuse and drug dependence problem. The age at which an individual begins to use marijuana determines the strength of the association. Since the brain of adolescents is still developing, it is more susceptible to chemicals found in drugs. This means significant impacts on brain function of the adolescent.

The solution to this problem is in ensuring that the current policies do not allow the use of recreational marijuana. The legalization of recreational marijuana will likely fuel the abuse of marijuana especially among the youths (Gordon 6). Although the current legalization laws provide guidelines on the amount of plants that individuals can grow, it will be difficult to implement checks. This will create a scenario where marijuana will be easily available among the youth, which will also provide the leeway for the use of other substances. As research indicates, use of marijuana increases the chances of using other illegal drugs. The current laws should thus aim on restricting marijuana use for medical purposes only.

At the personal basis, it is possible to take action against the legalization of recreational marijuana through lobbying, organizing talks, and holding peaceful demonstrations. The aim is to develop awareness and push legislators to develop policies that outlaw the recreational use of marijuana. By coming together to champion common interests, it is possible that the will of the people will prevail.

Works Cited

Caldeira, Kimberly M., et al. “Marijuana use Trajectories during the Post-College Transition:       Health Outcomes in Young Adulthood.” Drug and Alcohol Dependence, vol. 125, no. 3, 2012, pp. 267.

Gordon, Adam J., James W. Conley, and Joanne M. Gordon. “Medical Consequences of   Marijuana use: A Review of Current Literature.” Current Psychiatry Reports, vol. 15, no.      12, 2013, pp. 1-11.

Jager, Gerry, et al. “Cannabis use and Memory Brain Function in Adolescent Boys: A Cross-      Sectional Multicenter Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study.” Journal of the          American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, vol. 49, no. 6, 2010, pp. 561-          572e3