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The Status Of Medical Marijuana Essay

2321 words - 9 pages

Medical Marijuana is a growing legalization movement throughout the United States consisting of 16 states and the Washington D.C area. This movement has grown immensely as a hot topic issue since 1996, when it began in California. The main issue behind Medical Marijuana results mainly from an ethical standpoint, yet this essay will refrain from discussing any morality and will strictly be structured through factual information. Arizona recently passed Proposition 203, also known as Arizona Medical Marijuana Act (AMMA), on November 2, 2010 as an initial measure to decriminalize marijuana for those with chronic and debilitating illnesses as defined in the Act. To accurately define every single law that Medical Marijuana Program’s throughout the United States outline would be impossible; it is too lengthy and in depth. The purpose of this report is to define how and where Medical Marijuana began, the expansion into Arizona with the passing of Proposition 203 including the regulation and laws according to qualified patients, dispensaries and caregivers. This will also discuss the DEA’s outlook on Medical Marijuana Acts throughout the U.S while taking a look at specific cases between qualified patients following state law and prosecuted dispensaries. This article is not to define to morality of cannabis or whether it should or should not be legally; the purpose is to specifically inform individuals of medicinal cannabis and give a higher perspective and understanding on if someone has or is looking into applying for their registry identification card.
Medical Marijuana was first limited, and federally criminalized with the exception of medical and industrial uses, through the U.S Marihuana Tax Act of 1937. This was originally enacted by Franklin D. Roosevelt; this made it possible for the government to tax growers, importers and physicians for their participation of marijuana. This taxation made it illegal for someone to engage in any activity, as in the aforementioned, without registering first and paying money to obtain the ability to do so. The Boggs Act of 1952 and the Narcotics Control Act of 1956 set the first mandatory sentences for a first time marijuana possession; a minimum of a two year sentence (Neil Steinberg). It is listed as a schedule I narcotic, under the same classification as cocaine and heroin, meaning it has no recognized medical use according to the Federal Government. California became the first state to pass the legalize medical marijuana in 1996 and was heavily followed by 16 other states including but not limited to Arizona, Washington, Vermont, Colorado and Hawaii. California passed the Compassionate Use Act of 1996 under Proposition 215 according to the California Department of Public Health (CDHS) website. Under this act it ensured that residents of California who were seriously ill could obtain and use cannabis in order to ease the symptoms of such illnesses as cancer, AIDS, migraines and anorexia; any illness in which...

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