Marijuana (Essay Sample)
As tolerances grow for the personal possession and use of marijuana, there is a need for purposeful and well-grounded discussions on the impact the relaxation of criminal sanctions involving marijuana may have. Do laws prohibiting the growing, manufacturing, harvesting, processing, transporting, sale, distribution, possession and/or use of marijuana in any quantity reflect the socio-political values of the community; whether that community is a local town/city, a state, or the nation? Do these laws keep us safe? If prohibitions against marijuana are lifted, what’s next?
For the Final Project the student will compose a three-part position paper addressing the pros and cons of marijuana tolerance.
Part 1- How are the initial relaxations of the laws against marijuana an indication of a growing tolerance that should be fully adopted? All current restrictions against marijuana should be rescinded.
Part 2 - How are the initial relaxations of the laws against marijuana compromising the safety, security and “quality of life” in American communities? Prohibitions that have been modified should be re-enacted to their former restrictive level.
Part 3 - What impact will Part 1 and Part 2 have on the current prohibitions on other controlled dangerous substances (e.g., heroin, cocaine, meth-amphetamines, etc.)?
NOTE: This is not a position paper for the expression of your personal feelings regarding the topic. The paper should objective and identify legitimate and balanced arguments for all sides of the topic.
Marijuana is one of the most used as well as abused drug in the United States and the entire globe. Studies show significant negative effects of marijuana outweighing the advantages. Medical benefits of the drug lie in the processed chemical compounds and not the drug itself. Mental and physical health of persons using marijuana is adversely affected upon abuse. In the past there have been efforts to control the use of the drug through legislation of laws. However, in the recent past, it is noted there is relaxation in implementation of the same legislations and the effects are evident. This paper discusses how relaxations of the laws indicate growing tolerance of the drug. It shall also discuss how the relaxations have compromised safety, quality of life and security. Finally, the paper focuses on the effects of control of marijuana on other substances including cocaine, heroin, meth-amphetamines, etc.
Researchers and scientists have proven that marijuana plant contains useful chemicals that have been used in treating several illnesses. As a result, there have been arguments to legalize it for medical benefits. Currently, marijuana is categorized as a Schedule 1 by Controlled Substances Act (CSA). Some of the highlights of research findings are here. Active chemicals in marijuana called cannabinoids has been used in development of FDA-approved drugs leading to development of pharmaceuticals used to harness therapeutic benefits of cannabinoids at the same time minimizing the harmful side effects resulting from smoking and eating leaves, Iversen (2008).
According to Bello (2008), marijuana has several benefits medically. Main cannabinoids THC and cannabidiol (CBD) are found in varying proportions in the marijuana plant. THC is used in stimulating appetite as well as reducing nausea. Other THC-based medications can decrease inflammation, spasticity and pain. CBD is mainly useful in controlling epileptic seizure, treating addictions and psychosis, reducing inflammation and pain. Sativex; a spray, is used in treating spasticity resulting from multiple sclerosis and has been approved for use in the U.S and other countries. Currently, Sativex is under further research to establish how effective it can be in treating cancer pain. The above medical benefits have led to legalization of the use of marijuana.
On the other hand, marijuana has adverse effects. When used in acute portions, it can cause panic and anxiety especially for naÃ¯ve users. Impaired memory, attention and psychomotor performance have been proved a problem too. There is increased risk of psychotic cases especially to those from a family of psychosis history, Meyer (1975). When used in large amounts, marijuana can lead to chronic bronchitis and malignant disease. Researchers are still working on changes of marijuana increasing chances of cancer of pharynx, esophagus and oral cavity cancer and leukemia. As a result of these adverse effects that outweigh the benefits, there has been controlled use of marijuana in the U.S and all other countries.
Recently, there has been increasing pressure to legalize or rather decriminalize possession and use of certain amounts of marijuana and therefore pass laws to allow its use. Legalization involves removal of all prohibitions against its use. Implementing this means marijuana will be available for adults to purchase and use at their will. Decriminalization involves removal of criminal sanctions against behavior, article or act. Decriminalization of marijuana means it will remain illegal but the law will not prosecute any person found using or in possession of the drug. Instead, there will be penalties ranging from lack of penalty, drug education, civil fines and drug treatment. There is no state that has legalized marijuana so far but there are 26 states ...
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