Why Weed is Illegal? 

Marijuana is not yet legalized globally. 

Though many developed countries have embraced its uses in different life aspects. 

However, weed is illegal in most countries in 2023. 

And, there are several reasons for that. 

Apart from the weed’s psychoactive negative consequences, there’s a lot more to explore when it comes to marijuana prohibition. 

However, for marijuana enthusiasts across the globe, the 20th century has been proven a boon. USA, Canada has legalized marijuana to some extent initially in that time.

While if you observe today’s situation about weed in those countries, you will find it far better than that time. 

Still, there are some prohibitions yet. 

So, let’s dive deep and find out the reasons why weed is illegal and if the weed’s future can be brighter. 

Let’s get started:

Why Weed is Illegal 

History of Marijuana

Before we jump into the reasons, let’s start with scratch.

Let’s check out some starting stages of marijuana if it was legal back in ancient times or not. 

According to the written history, you will be surprised to know that marijuana history takes us back to the third millennium BC.

While it is also believed that it might stretch back more if it could be possible. 

That means we humans were already aware of this green plant and its uses in different ways. Although back at that time, people were more likely into using weed plants for rope and fibers. 

Marijuana was also used as medicine and even as a psychoactive compound as well.

Hence it is clear that marijuana was quite common in ancient times and there was no illegality or ban on its usage. 

So, when did the ban took effect?

Let me explain:

The first time ban on marijuana occurred during the 14th century. Though it was not a worldwide ban and people were still into weed activities. 

Even till the earlier 19th century, marijuana and its usage in different ways were quite common until the end of the century came. 

The starting era of the 20th century was not good for marijuana across the globe. 

As many countries such as the U.S have initiated a global trend on drug prohibition including marijuana. This movement was followed by many countries then resulting in a drastic decline in the cannabis market and people using it. 

Although it is also believed that legal prohibition on weed could not make it completely vanish from the land. Rather people were able to get their hands on weed via underground black markets, which were operating by the unknowns. 

However, the starting 21st century changed people’s perspective towards weed.

Some countries embraced marijuana in the medical field. Canada legalized medical weed back in 2000. 

And, since then there was a positive spike in the change of cannabis legislation across the globe. While Uruguay was the first nation to legalize marijuana. 

Later on, it was followed by different countries in some aspects. 

Summing up the marijuana journey in 2023 then you will realize that marijuana has never gone from people’s life. Even after the strict ban. 

That is why when the people demanded in bulk the authorities were constrained to change the cannabis legislation. 

Finally, in 2023, you will be able to watch people talking about weed freely, “marijuana-tourism” has been introduced to the world now. Moreover, medical patients across different countries are getting benefits from medical marijuana. 

In all of that, there are still some countries where weed is illegal and it is a controversial term. So, what are the reasons and what has made it remain illegal, let’s find out:

Reasons Why Weed is Illegal in 2023?

Digging out deeper and considering all the main factors, these are the top reasons which are making weed illegal. 

  • Link to Other Drugs

This is one of the major reasons for the ban on marijuana. 

In the earlier time when the authorities were introducing anti-drug laws, marijuana was introduced along with some heavy drugs such as opium, heroin, and others. 

Although cannabis was not considered to be a “narcotic” drug. 

Unfortunately, the misrepresentation of marijuana and links with other narcotic drugs have made its wrong image. 

Now, marijuana is treated to be a separate “abnormal drug” under the law. While alcohol may be more harmful than marijuana, according to some experts. 

So, finally, the traditional treatment of marijuana with other harmful drugs has made it seem harmful like opium and heroin. That is why it is treated as the “Gateway of drugs” making it one of the reasons for illegalization. 

  • Addictive Nature

Marijuana might be addictive. 

Although there is no actual data available on how much weed is addictive it is believed that marijuana is less addictive than other drugs. 

However, still, marijuana is considered to be a Schedule I drug based on the perception that it is addictive due to “higher potential of abuse”. 

Moreover, it is also believed that people get dependent on marijuana after frequent use. 

While the same consequence goes for alcohol, which is legal. 

Well, people favoring marijuana legalization claim that weed is not as addictive as the government treats. And, due to the links with the other drugs, it causes more barriers. 

  • Ban on the medicinal use

Marijuana has multiple medical benefits. 

Many critical medical conditions are found to be relieved by marijuana. Even in chemotherapy, the patients are found to get relief from many symptoms. Such as vomit, loss of appetite, and nausea. 

Still, at the federal level, you will not find the legalization of medical marijuana. 

Even medical patients across the countries and states have demanded an operational way by which they can access medical marijuana hassle-free. However, still, they have to be dependent on external sources.

Moreover, where medical marijuana has been legalized, there have been certain guidelines and the mandatory process by which a patient needs to go through for accessing the cannabis medication, which is not an easy task. 

And, the awful thing is that there is no guidelines or process to be followed in case of alcohol or tobacco.

  • Violence

Marijuana has been considered a drug with a “higher potential of abuse”. 

Also, there have been many reports under which it is shown that marijuana has been the leading cause of violence and criminal record.

Well, it was in the initial time. 

However, the positive change in legislation recently showed there’s a decline in such cases where marijuana has been the cause for the violence or getting arrested. 

Moreover, it was also expected that people used to commit marijuana possession and sale-related crimes when it was illegal. 

After legality in some areas, there was no such evidence proving the spike in such cases. 

While in the case of heroin, opium, and other drugs, the violence is found to be more than that. Though still marijuana is collectively termed with heavy drugs. 

  • Advocacy failure

Failure in advocacy has been one of the reasons why weed is illegal. 

Many movements have convinced the marijuana legislators to re-think cannabis legislation. However, advocates for legalization have rarely made any convincing attempts. 

Instead of some strong evidence and practical benefit of marijuana for the people, the attempt could make only a reasonable chance, which is the huge public demand. 

And, it is not sufficient for the legislators to take some major decisions. 

This failure in right advocacy has dropped many opportunities. 

If the marijuana activists and advocates give strong reasons and evidence then there will be a chance that something huge and positive change can take place about weed. 

  • Politics

Politics and politicians have also been one of the causes for marijuana remaining illegal. 

Even it is historically seen that every time any proposal was made to legalize weed it was opposed by the politicians for unreal reasons. These politicians do not want to risk losing the donors funding the campaigns by passing a law with nationwide popularity. 

Even though multiple types of research have proved that the legalization of marijuana will benefit in economic, environmental, and industrial aspects. Still, these politicians never get convinced. 

However, the regular positive outcomes from the different medical and scientific experiments have left these politicians with no words. It is more likely that if the public demands legalization of weed federally then the lawmakers must have to take decisions in favor of them. 

  • Agriculture factor

Hemp cultivation has been quite popular from earlier times. 

As said before, hemp is one of the rich and quality sources of fiber and textile. Hence, legalization will impact the GMO producers. GMO or Genetically Modified Organisms producers exist by making industrial crops, which can be easily replaced by hemp.

As hemp is a more sustainable and organic way for all of these industries. 

That is why the heavy effect of legalization on these industries may be causing prohibition on them. 

Can Weed be Ever Legalized?


It is possible and weed can be legalized. 

However, here’s something to take care of:

In some of the regions where medical marijuana is permitted to some extent, you will be able to find that the movement for allowing medical marijuana was all started from “an example”.

Let me explain:

Like in one of the cases, the authorities permitted the use of CBD for a child suffering from seizures after the request. While the good news was that it helped that child in the reduction of the seizures. 

This initiated the process and authorities have gained the trust over medical marijuana. 

Slowly, more people started demanding the same, and finally, when the audience in bulk demanded, authorities were constrained to change the legislation favoring them. 

However, considering all the pros and cons, medical marijuana is regulated in most countries and regions. 

Similarly, there is quite possible that weed for personal usage might be legalized in a regulated way. However, if it happens so then still, it will be a win!

Related Questions

#1. Why is marijuana illegal in the U.S.A?

Marijuana at the federal level remains illegal. However, in recent times, there have been many positive changes in the legislation that has favored weed enthusiasts in the country. Even in 2023, you will be able to find many states in the U.S that have legalized weed by reforming the laws. Also, medical marijuana is quite popular in different regions. However, there’s a regulated program for the same. 

#2. Why marijuana was banned in the U.S?

The banning trend was started back in the 1930s. It was followed by many different countries as well. However, this ban occurred due to a surge in marijuana-related offenses and a decrease in the productivity of the people. Ultimately, the authorities got to know about the psychoactive effects of weed and its harmful consequences. So, they have to ban it. 

#3. Is marijuana bad?

It depends upon how you use it. Marijuana has different effects on the body. It has also psychoactive effects as well as benefitting effects in certain medical conditions. So, it depends on the user whether marijuana is bad or good for them. 

#4. Is weed addictive?

Usage of weed frequently might lead to dependency. Although, in certain cases, weed is found to help avoid addiction to alcohol and other drugs. Well, there’s no clear evidence about that. However, excessive usage can indeed lead to weed addiction. However, some reports claim that marijuana is less addictive than other drugs.

#5. Are there any side effects of marijuana?

Not much. A weed smoker might face bloodshot eyes, dry mouth, and sleepiness. Moreover, research has shown that weed has some additional side effects when used in more than the required quantity. 

Why Weed is Illegal: Final Words

The illegalization of weed has been decreased in recent times. However, the history of marijuana has been quite rich with humans. Although it has suffered a lot during the 19th and 20th centuries. 

Slowly, the authorities have taken its importance in the medical field. Hence you will find many countries permitting marijuana usage for treatment. 

With that said, in the upcoming time, marijuana enthusiasts might get some positive changes in the legislation. However, until then we have to wait and do the things within the law. 

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