According to a 1996 Gallup poll, "73 percent of Americans favored making marjuana available by perscription", but 69 percent did not favor the legalization of its recreational use. (Koch) With this topic continually in the news, it becomes more about its medicinal and therapuetic uses and less about how it is used recreationally. Medical marijuana should be federally legalized to be used as an alternative medicine because it is a better choice than other drugs for pain and nausea, it is more affordable than other medicines and with its change from a Scheduale I to a Scheduale II drug, would fall in the same regulations as a perscription drug.
Marijuana is a better choice than other drugs for pain and nausea because its side effects are not as harsh and it is the only thing that that seems to work for some patients. For those with nausea, it causes this to fade, giving them the ability to eat again. For those with pain, it helps them in the way that an aspirin would work for an average person. An example of this is Angel Raich, who suffered from chronic pain and a brain tumor which could not be removed, who was so weak at one point, she had to use a wheelchair. With no pain relief in sight, she decided to try marijuana with her doctors' approval. The drug worked, "...her symptoms improved, and she even retired her wheelchair"(Marshall). It is also a better choice because other medicines could be made from it. Kathy Koch, an assistant managing editor who specializes in education and social-policy issues, explains more about this in her article "Medical Marijuana":
Scientists see the potential for developing a variety of new medicines from among the 200-plus active ingrediants in [marijuana]cannabis, including more than 60 cannaboids - constituents unique to marijuana. Researchers are particularly interested in the apparent ability of cannaboids to treat pain and possibly prevent permanent damage from head trauma or stroke."(1)
With the federal legalization of medical marijuana, scientists and researchers could freely experiment with the drug to find more uses, medicines and possibly more cures.
Marijuana is more affordable than other medicines because it is easier to produce/grow in the patients home or through a pharmacy than a chemical in a laboratory or an expensive inhaled version. "Marijuana is, for many patients, the only alternative that works; for others, it is the only affordable alternative." says Dave Fratello, Communications Director with Americans for Medical Rights(qtd. by Koch). For those without the option of growing at home, which would be the least expensive, there are clubs and dispensaries in states where medicinal marijuana is more legal and acceptable. One of these clubs, the Cannabis Cultivators Club in San Francisco, Calif, "sells the smokable variety of pot as well as such pot-imbued products as brownies, pesto sauce, get capsules and tincture of rum"(Worsnop). With medicinal marijuana more...