Legalizing Marijuana

Topics: Drug addiction, Cannabis, Law Pages: 9 (2519 words) Published: January 21, 2015


Legalizing Marijuana
Sharon Cook
SOC 120
Instructor Tim Carter
September 12, 2011

Legalizing Marijuana
Legalizing Marijuana has been an ongoing controversy for many years. Marijuana is considered the gateway drug that leads to the use of much stronger drugs. The use of Marijuana is highly addictive and can cause long-term users many discomforts when trying to stop. Marijuana is also used to help lessen the pain for patients with Glaucoma, Cancer, Arthritis, and many other illnesses. Patients have reported feeling more comfort with less pain after the use of Marijuana. From an ethical standpoint and for these medical purposes Marijuana should be legal.

If Marijuana is legalized it would create a number of problems. One of the problems is that the drug cartels would exploit it on the black market and it would become more of an international problem than it is now (New Push to Legalize Marijuana in Washington State, 2011). The people that would keep it alive would kill to protect it because of the money involved. Marijuana is being bought and sold all over the world and the smuggling of it in and out of the U.S. leads to many miscellaneous crimes and even death.

Marijuana has many harmful chemicals to date it is registered at 425 that convert to thousands when smoked. The medical problems it causes are not just short term but can be long term as well. These problems range from pre mature cancer, depression, memory loss, and addiction. Cancer is one of the main medical threats and is more harmful than tobacco in cigarettes (Marijuana should not be legal because, 2001). Therefore, the addiction rate is higher and can lead to harder drugs.

The use of Marijuana over a long period can lead to years of addiction. Drug addiction affects the lives of many people in our society today. Drug addiction is a compulsive behavior that effects how people function in their daily lives. It can affect how you treat your family, school, work, and recreational activities. Some research shows that approximately 9 percent of people who use Marijuana will become addicted (Info Facts: Marijuana, 2010).

Those who have been addicted to Marijuana for long periods of time show symptoms of withdrawal when they try to stop. Some of these withdrawal symptoms are anxiety, loss of appetite, sleeplessness, and irritability (Info Facts: Marijuana, 2010). These symptoms make it hard for the users to remain abstinent for very long. Sometimes if unable to stop due to the withdrawals users go through they might substitute the Marijuana use with another drug such as pills or cocaine. This leads to yet another addiction and further problems down the road.

Marijuana that is bought and sold today is 25 more times as potent as it was many years ago. The main ingredient found in Marijuana is THC (Tetra Hydrocannibinol). THC affects the brain leading to a “high” the user is trying to seek. These areas of the brain are called cannabinoid receptors. Some brain areas have many of these receptors and others have very few. These receptors are in the parts of the brain that effect pleasure, concentrating, thinking, and coordination (Marijuana should not be legal because, 2001).

The federal Controlled Substance Act (CSA) classifies marijuana as a schedule I drug. Being a schedule I drug, marijuana has a high potential for abuse and no acceptable medical use (Dresser, 2009, pg. 1, para. 1). By the middle of 2009, fourteen states passed laws permitting the use of medical marijuana under certain circumstances. Patients and doctors in these fourteen states cannot be prosecuting for breaking state laws for possessing or growing marijuana (Dresser, 2009).

There are studies that have been done showing that people who use marijuana regularly have high anxiety, depression, and schizophrenia. These same studies show that the age a person chooses to start using is a big factor. People who start using at a young...

References: Dresser, R. (2009). Irrational Basis: The Legal Status of Medical Marijuana. Hastings Center Report, 39(6), 7-8. Retrieved September 12, 2011, from EBSCOhost.
Failure to seize marijuana, qualifying patients ' affirmative defense., Wa. tit. 69, § RCW 69.51A.040 (2007 & Supp. 2011), http://apps.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=69.51A.040.
Gupta, S. (2011). Pros and cons Legalizing Marijuana. Retrieved September 12, 2011, from http://www.buzzle.com/articles/pros-and-cons-of-legalizing-marijuana.html
Info Facts: Marijuana. (2010, November). Retrieved August 29, 2011, from National Institute on Drug Abuse database. http://drugabuse.gov/infofacts/marijuana.html
Marijuana: New Poll shows Americans want it legalized.  (2011, August 24). Daily Gleaner,C.7. Retrieved September 11, 2011, from Canadian Newsstand Complete. (Document ID: 2433271851).
Marijuana should not be legal because. (2001, June 2). Retrieved August 29, 2011, from http://www.marijuana.com/legalization-decriminalization/1004-marijuana-should-not- legal-because.html
Mosser, K. (2010). Introduction to ethics and social responsibility. San Diego, Bridgepoint Education, Inc. Retrieved September 12, 2011, from http://content.ashford.edu
New Push to Legalize Marijuana in Washington State [Press release]. (2011, June 22). Retrieved August 29, 2011, from http://www.kirotv.com/news/28319947/detail.html
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