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Health, Medicine, Nursing
Research Paper
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Legalization of marijuana (Research Paper Sample)


Please read and follow the assignment instructions. This is a SCHOLARLY OPINION PAPER. Please the references need to be NO LESS THAN 5YEARS.FROM 2010-2014. THANKS


College of Nursing

NSP 4545

Opinion Paper Directions


The purpose of this assignment is to provide the student with the opportunity to analyze 2 divergent opinions related to a topic in substance abuse. The student should attempt to debate the issue in a scholarly, objective manner; therefore stating your opinion in the introduction is not appropriate.


Identify a topical issue related to substance abuse that you may have heard discussed that invokes a variety of opinions. Examples: clean needle exchange, legalization of marijuana, efficacy of War on Drugs, drug treatment for incarcerated individuals, or other similar controversial issue. Clearly state the question under debate. Clearly identify 3 points on both sides of the issue. Use the literature to identify both sides of the controversy and discuss your findings in a 600-900 word APA 6th edition formatted paper. Support each argument with a primary source citation. Avoid quotations in this brief paper. In the conclusion, state which side of the argument you support and why. You may use the 1st person in the conclusion of this paper, but try to avoid it.


This paper must be submitted for formative (feedback) and summative (final evaluation) evaluation. This does NOT mean that the first submission is a draft! The formative paper should be your best attempt at the finished product, and must meet the word requirement. Feedback will be provided where you submitted your paper, in either text boxes and/or audio feedback. Please note the faculty cannot correct your paper, but will give you feedback about how well you are meeting the criteria for the paper, and where you might need to improve. If necessary, the faculty will ask that you set up a phone appointment to discuss your paper further. You may request a phone or live meeting anytime also.  This paper will be submitted to the Turn-It-In plagiarism monitor at the same time it is submitted for formative review.  You will be expected to revise your work to achieve < 10% match in Turn-It-In before the summative evaluation.


See the criteria below for a successful paper:

  1. Introduction
    1. Describe a controversial topic related to substance abuse.
    2. Define the problem  and evidence that it exists
    3. Identify the purpose of the paper.
    4. Content/ Arguments
      1. Discuss 3 arguments in favor of the controversy, using peer reviewed literature to support the arguments.
      2. Discuss 3 arguments against the controversy, using peer reviewed literature to support the arguments.
      3. Conclusion
        1. Discuss the best solution with support from the literature.
        2. Grammar: Use precise words, without slang or personal pronouns. Ensure there are appropriate transition sentences from one section to the next.  (review “How to write a scholarly paper” lecture).
        3. APA: Include title & reference pages formatted in APA; use a minimum of 3 current (< 5 years) peer reviewed references.

Legalization of Marijuana
Marijuana is a general recreational and street drug which is derived from a marijuana plant, which is also known as the hemp plant cannabis sativa. The marijuana drug is a combination of female flowers and dried leaves of the hemp plant which are usually used in a form of cigarette, baked into cakes and biscuits as hallucinogen or narcotic (Goldberg, 2014). There various controversies that surrounds the excessive consumption of marijuana which is popularly identified as abuse, cutting across the political class, legal systems, and the medical fraternity.
One of the main controversies is located in the field of medical research, where some medical researchers say that it can be used as medicine. A great history still stands that marijuana has been used for medication for quite some time. The medical sector holds some specialists who still strongly believe that marijuana has a history of medication that ought to be appreciated and continued. In addition, they point out that Cannabis bears a stretched history in the medicine sector, having early accounts of that flashes back into five thousand years to China. In the said past years, marijuana was used in treating conditions such as constipation, malaria, as well as rheumatic pains. Presently, the modern world continues to take in the herb for similar purpose. For the people with long term illnesses like cancer, marijuana is commonly used to reduce the pain among the patients (NORML, 2013). The University Of California Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research conducted a research in the year two thousand and ten that they later announced in public. They stated that marijuana was supposed to be an important treatment for people suffering from neuropathy as well as other serious diseases (NORML, 2013). Furthermore, other studies also found marijuana to be helpful in reducing pains in illnesses like diabetes, cancer, spinal cord injury, HIV/AIDS as well as other incapacitating conditions. The pain reduction caused by the herb was found to be much higher than the other current available medicines. Patients that suffer from multiple sclerosis were said to benefit from marijuana as a medicine.
The economic implications on the war on drugs indicate that it is very expensive. One of the main facts about the prisons is that they are very expensive, but most people wouldn’t know. On average the state and the federal prisons hold about 1.6 million prisoners. The cost of hosting a single prisoner in the prisons averages about $25,000 US dollars, which translates to about $40 billion US dollars. The fraction of this money that is spent on the marijuana inmates could fund important projects that would greatly benefit the entire country. However, given the rate of use and the wide spread use throughout the country, if the government meant to tax the same, the amount of revenues collected from marijuana would...
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