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Legalization Of Marijuana Essay Research Paper Within

Legalization Of Marijuana Essay, Research Paper Within the idiosyncrasies of almost any sociomedical analysis of our various contemporary health dilemmas, there exists the issue of marijuana and the controversy surrounding its usage and its legalization. Indeed, scientific studies have done nothing less than proven that “occasional use” of marijuana poses no greater a threat to the human body than does similar usage and quantities of alcohol.

Legalization Of Marijuana Essay, Research Paper

Within the idiosyncrasies of almost any sociomedical analysis of our various contemporary health dilemmas, there exists the issue of marijuana and the controversy surrounding its usage and its legalization. Indeed, scientific studies have done nothing less than proven that “occasional use” of marijuana poses no greater a threat to the human body than does similar usage and quantities of alcohol. While the long-term health effects of marijuana-smoking are reminiscent of what we know to be the risks of chronic cigarette smokers, there exists virtually no scientific data nor substantial argument which warrants the maintenance of marijuana as an illegal substance in the United States. In Weiss & Mirin’s book, Marijuana, the authors effectively recount the history of marijuana-laws in this country. Citing specifically how the drug was first a required product whose growth was mandated on American farms, she illustratively brings readers into the nineteenth and twentieth centuries where marijuana was originally legal, widely-used and still well-looked upon. Apparently, the social degradation of marijuana began when Texas police officers associated violent crimes and various other social delinquencies with the drug. This was a spark that started a fire which by the 1920’s and 30’s had grown so large it gave marijuana a reputation definitive of the colloquial term, “killer weed.” (Weiss & Mirin, 1986). Looking back over history, I find it virtually amazing that the controversy of marijuana’s legalization has not ended with its full endorsement. We continue to live in a social hypocrisy; alcohol and tobacco are legal while an equivalent substance is not. From the alcohol prohibition which took place earlier this century, we should have well-learned that such banning only creates more problems. Similar to the results of socially catastrophic results of prohibition; marijuana delegalization has led only to more pertinent crimes and to the existence of a large, illegal black market. The only difference in this case, is that after prohibition we learned; alcohol became legal again because it created more corruption when it was not so. Unfortunately, marijuana has not yet been legalized partially because it still carries with it such adamant negative societal stereotypes which are reinforced by a black market. If it were legalized, marijuana’s effect would be no different than the legalization of alcohol and our society would be better off with regard to a plethora of detailed ethical and economic aspects. Oddly enough, the United States Government has theoretically accepted the use of marijuana for an extremely marginal group of users: AIDS patients. With the various examples of ill individuals cited in Bob Batz’s recent article, an argument is essentially made that those who are terminal, “have nothing to lose.” While this may not exist as a sound, universal argument for the legalization of marijuana, it does in my opinion, illustrate one of the many ridiculous social ironies surrounding the situation: the government is willing to test and to experiment with a drug that we already know all about and are allegedly so firmly against. (Batz, 1994). Factually, there is no real case against marijuana’s legalization. In Elizabeth Neus’s article, Bill Grigg is quoted as saying that, “no studies indicated that smoked marijuana had any benefit over approved medicinal purposes.” But then again, no studies indicated that it harmed anyone either. True, it is argued that patients with diseases such as AIDS risk pneumonia and other disease-upsetting symptoms when they smoke, but that is if they smoke any substance. They are still legally allowed to smoke cigarettes, so why should they not be allowed to smoke marijuana; a substance which my articles report “has a numbing effect on their condition.” (Batz, 1994). The media argues that “children who smoke marijuana are far more likely than those who dont to try harder drugs.” So ? In my opinion, that is all the more reason to experiment more fully with the legalization of marijuana. After all, those studies were done in a society were marijuana is illegal. Therefore, it exists in the same social category as much “harder”, more dangerous drugs such as cocaine. Legalizing the use of marijuana certainly will not worsen the situation. If anything at all, it will keep respectable users with integrity from being forced to involve themselves in the “black market” and high-danger social scenes which they must often frequent to obtain marijuana. With specific regard to young children, they would not be allowed (minimum age=21) to use marijuana any way so legalization would not necessarily have any negative nor any positive effect on other pertinent future decisions in their life. Many states have allowed doctors to prescribe marijuana for all sorts of pain relievers; including its prescription as a positive aid for chemotherapy patients to help them stop vomiting among other things. Ironically, even these uses have created great controversy. (Arnold, 1991). But where is all of the controversy about legalizing marijuana coming from ? Why is there any argument at all ? In one article which I researched, a poll revealed that only 38 out of 1282 people were against the legalization of marijuana. I, evidently am not one of those thirty-eight sheltered individuals. (Hunt, 1994). Ironically I, (and probably many other endorsers of marijuana legalization) have absolutely never even experimented with the drug in my life. I have no desire to use marijuana either. Rather, I maintain my desire to use common sense. The only arguments against marijuana are the obvious health effects which are similar to smoking and the irrelevant belief that it influences the use of harder drugs. If we are so concerned over lung disease, we should ban cigarettes as well. But of course, there is too much money in the tobacco industry for that to ever happen. There is in fact, more pertinent data, demonstrating the ill-effects of tobacco cigarettes than there of marijuana. (Neus, 1994). The latter is not even addictive ! Clearly, the time has come for our government to realize the socioeconomic necessity of a marijuana industry; the drug helps terminal patients, harms no one any more (often less) than many other legal substances and currently brings more crime and trouble as an illegal substance in a black market than it ever could if it were legally sold in stores. Bibliography Anderson, Edward F. Peyote: The Divine Cactus. Arizona, 1980. Arnold, David. Legal Medical Use of Marijuana Sought. Boston Globe. September 8, 1991; P. 35. Batz, Bob Jr., For AIDS Patients, Medicinal (Bot Legal) Marijuana. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette; November 22, 1994. Hunt, Linda. Reader Feedback. Boston Globe. September 15, 1994; P. 19. Hyde, Margaret O. and others. Mind Drugs. McGraw, 1981. Dodd, 5th ed., 1986.

Lazear, Mindi. Marijuana and Contemporary America. Free Press, 1982. Neus, Elizabeth. Medicinal Pot Crowd now Looks to Republicans. Gannett News Service. November 13, 1994. Weiss, Roger D. and Mirin, Steven M. Marijuana. American Psychiatric Press, >> —————–Forwarded Message: Subj: Re: PAPER —12000papers.com Order FormDate: 99-05-09 22:29:32 EDTFrom: heather@termpapers-on-file.com (Heather Todd)To: Hmaster1@aol.com Within the idiosyncrasies of almost any sociomedicalanalysis of our various contemporary health dilemmas,there exists the issue of marijuana and the controversysurrounding its usage and its legalization. Indeed,scientific studies have done nothing less than proven that”occasional use” of marijuana poses no greater a threat tothe human body than does similar usage and quantities ofalcohol. While the long-term health effects ofmarijuana-smoking are reminiscent of what we know to bethe risks of chronic cigarette smokers, there existsvirtually no scientific data nor substantial argumentwhich warrants the maintenance of marijuana as an illegalsubstance in the United States. In Weiss & Mirin’s book, Marijuana, the authorseffectively recount the history of marijuana-laws in thiscountry. Citing specifically how the drug was first arequired product whose growth was mandated on Americanfarms, she illustratively brings readers into thenineteenth and twentieth centuries where marijuana wasoriginally legal, widely-used and still well-looked upon.Apparently, the social degradation of marijuana began whenTexas police officers associated violent crimes andvarious other social delinquencies with the drug. Thiswas a spark that started a fire which by the 1920’s and30’s had grown so large it gave marijuana a reputationdefinitive of the colloquial term, “killer weed.” (Weiss& Mirin, 1986). Looking back over history, I find it virtuallyamazing that the controversy of marijuana’s legalizationhas not ended with its full endorsement. We continue tolive in a social hypocrisy; alcohol and tobacco are legalwhile an equivalent substance is not. From the alcoholprohibition which took place earlier this century, weshould have well-learned that such banning only createsmore problems. Similar to the results of sociallycatastrophic results of prohibition; marijuanadelegalization has led only to more pertinent crimes andto the existence of a large, illegal black market. Theonly difference in this case, is that after prohibition welearned; alcohol became legal again because it createdmore corruption when it was not so. Unfortunately, marijuana has not yet been legalizedpartially because it still carries with it such adamantnegative societal stereotypes which are reinforced by ablack market. If it were legalized, marijuana’s effectwould be no different than the legalization of alcohol andour society would be better off with regard to a plethoraof detailed ethical and economic aspects. Oddly enough, the United States Government hastheoretically accepted the use of marijuana for anextremely marginal group of users: AIDS patients. With thevarious examples of ill individuals cited in Bob Batz’srecent article, an argument is essentially made that thosewho are terminal, “have nothing to lose.” While this maynot exist as a sound, universal argument for thelegalization of marijuana, it does in my opinion,illustrate one of the many ridiculous social ironiessurrounding the situation: the government is willing totest and to experiment with a drug that we already knowall about and are allegedly so firmly against. (Batz,1994). Factually, there is no real case against marijuana’slegalization. In Elizabeth Neus’s article, Bill Grigg isquoted as saying that, “no studies indicated that smokedmarijuana had any benefit over approved medicinalpurposes.” But then again, no studies indicated that itharmed anyone either. True, it is argued that patientswith diseases such as AIDS risk pneumonia and otherdisease-upsetting symptoms when they smoke, but that is ifthey smoke any substance. They are still legally allowedto smoke cigarettes, so why should they not be allowed tosmoke marijuana; a substance which my articles report “hasa numbing effect on their condition.” (Batz, 1994). The media argues that “children who smoke marijuanaare far more likely than those who dont to try harderdrugs.” So ? In my opinion, that is all the more reasonto experiment more fully with the legalization ofmarijuana. After all, those studies were done in asociety were marijuana is illegal. Therefore, it existsin the same social category as much “harder”, moredangerous drugs such as cocaine. Legalizing the use ofmarijuana certainly will not worsen the situation. Ifanything at all, it will keep respectable users withintegrity from being forced to involve themselves in the”black market” and high-danger social scenes which theymust often frequent to obtain marijuana. With specificregard to young children, they would not be allowed(minimum age=21) to use marijuana any way so legalizationwould not necessarily have any negative nor any positiveeffect on other pertinent future decisions in their life. Many states have allowed doctors to prescribemarijuana for all sorts of pain relievers; including itsprescription as a positive aid for chemotherapy patientsto help them stop vomiting among other things.Ironically, even these uses have created greatcontroversy. (Arnold, 1991). But where is all of the controversy about legalizingmarijuana coming from ? Why is there any argument at all ?In one article which I researched, a poll revealed thatonly 38 out of 1282 people were against the legalizationof marijuana. I, evidently am not one of thosethirty-eight sheltered individuals. (Hunt, 1994). Ironically I, (and probably many other endorsers ofmarijuana legalization) have absolutely never evenexperimented with the drug in my life. I have no desireto use marijuana either. Rather, I maintain my desire touse common sense. The only arguments against marijuanaare the obvious health effects which are similar tosmoking and the irrelevant belief that it influences theuse of harder drugs. If we are so concerned over lung disease, we shouldban cigarettes as well. But of course, there is too muchmoney in the tobacco industry for that to ever happen.There is in fact, more pertinent data, demonstrating theill-effects of tobacco cigarettes than there of marijuana.(Neus, 1994). The latter is not even addictive ! Clearly,the time has come for our government to realize thesocioeconomic necessity of a marijuana industry; the drughelps terminal patients, harms no one any more (oftenless) than many other legal substances and currentlybrings more crime and trouble as an illegal substance in ablack market than it ever could if it were legally sold instores. Bibliography Anderson, Edward F. Peyote: The Divine Cactus. Arizona,1980. Arnold, David. Legal Medical Use of Marijuana Sought.Boston Globe. September 8, 1991; P. 35. Batz, Bob Jr., For AIDS Patients, Medicinal (Bot Legal)Marijuana. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette; November 22, 1994. Hunt, Linda. Reader Feedback. Boston Globe. September15, 1994; P. 19. Hyde, Margaret O. and others. Mind Drugs. McGraw, 1981.Dodd, 5th ed., 1986. Lazear, Mindi. Marijuana and Contemporary America. FreePress, 1982. Neus, Elizabeth. Medicinal Pot Crowd now Looks toRepublicans. Gannett News Service. November 13, 1994. Weiss, Roger D. and Mirin, Steven M. Marijuana. AmericanPsychiatric Press, 1986.

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