99 Problems: Is Marijuana Really One?

1292 words - 5 pages

America has been through a plethora of ages and eras; the Great depression, the prohibition era and the crack era just to name a few. Now, in modern America we face many issues; a major issue is drug use. One drug in particular is marijuana. Weed, Mary Jane, bud, chronic, pot and ganja are just a few of the names used for marijuana. Being the most commonly used drug in America, marijuana has been around for a while and does not seem to be going anywhere. (Drugabuse.gov) Some people view the infamous plant as beneficial and a gift from nature while others see it as a horrid drug or the devils plant. Regardless of the many opinions, marijuana is highly popular and considered some what of a necessity for some, even with laws against it. Marijuana should be legalized for medicinal purposes and for therapeutic purposes under certain conditions in order to reap its benefits and control its negative effects.
Marijuana, more formally known as cannabis, is a drug with a plant origin and contains THC. THC or tetrahydrocannabinol is the chemical that causes increased appetite, relaxation, and other key effects of marijuana. Marijuana can be consumed through food, brewed as a tea, turned into an oil or the more common way of smoking it in blunts or joints. Marijuana that is ingested (through food or drink) takes longer to be absorbed to the brain and bloodstream compared to being smoked. When marijuana is smoked it fills the lungs which then transports it to the bloodstream. The drug influences the brain in that it can affect its natural functions and development.
People that use marijuana heavily or consistently are more at risk when it comes to their memory and learning. Long term and short term effects on the brain from marijuana use can include: challenged coordination, trouble problem solving, inaccurate perceptions and distorted learning and memory. However, not all effects of marijuana are negative. Marijuana can reduce common illnesses such as the common cold.(Drugfreeworld.org) It also is beneficial to major health issues such as cancer and AIDS/HIV. Patients with cancer use marijuana to assist the other medicines that they are on:this way they can control their nassau and gain an appetite. This also applies for people suffering from HIV/AIDS, by them using marijuana for its THC content for the same purposes as cancer patients. This proves that marijuana benefits and not just harms.
Although marijuana has its benefits and popularity, it is still illegal. Someone that has marijuana and is caught, under federal law they could be punished up to one year in jail and could include a fine that is a minimum of $1,000. (norml.org) However, state laws on marijuana differ. States where marijuana is decriminalized are: Oregon, Nevada, California, Colorado, Nebraska, Minnesota, Mississippi, Ohio, Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina, Maine and New Jersey. Only two of the fifty states, Washington and Colorado, have laws that make marijuana legal....

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