Marijuana

I have often wondered why the “War on Drugs” has not been very effective, in fact, it really has done nothing. Take for example marijuana. It is banned in any form of growth and use everywhere in the United States. Yet, this drug gets just as much use as alcohol. I probably know just about as many “potheads” as I do alcoholics, yet the persistence of the government to waste countless billions of dollars to try and wipe out the use of this drug is pathetic.Take for example a part of our history. The year is 1920, the government decides on the idea of the prohibition of alcohol, and the Eighteenth Amendment, and the prohibition era began.

What did this era in our history accomplish, nothing. Organized crime rose, criminal influence rose, many people died from poor imported illegal products, and yet the prohibition period ended, and alcohol was allowed once again in our society. A new trend, similar to this one has already begun a long time ago.

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This is the prohibition of marijuana in all forms.Let’s take in to account all of the uses of marijuana, or “hemp,” not just the use to get high. The fibers from hemp can be used to make all kinds of things, from paper to fibers, and oils, medicines, and even food. Take paper, if we had another source in which to make paper from, we could stop the destruction of forests which deplete our air of oxygen. More trees also mean more natural beauty in our environment, which is constantly being destroyed.

Less pollution from logging will also be seen. If hemp was allowed ti be grown for these reasons, think of all the money struggling farmers could make. With the tobacco industry going under more every day, these farmers are going to be homeless because they will not have any source of income. States which once received most of there income from the growth of tobacco can now flourish with the growth of hemp.Medicinal marijuana has been a popular debate for a long time. People with painful diseases, in which medical officials agree that medicinal marijuana would help these people out, have to do without this treatment because the government thinks that it is bad to smoke marijuana.So, I propose that we legalize marijuana and end this prohibition.

Look at how much better the country ran after the ending of the alcohol prohibition, crime dropped, as well as murders and other horrific acts of violence from man to fellow man. Also, the prison population, which is filled with inmates charged with minor possession or selling charges, would be opened up to the criminals who really deserve to be there. I would much rather have a pot smoker walking down the street next to me than a murderer who was given a lighter sentence due to prison overcrowding.

I read a quote for Abraham Lincoln recently, and it read, “Prohibition will work great injury to the cause of temperance. …for it goes beyond the bounds of reason in that it attempts to control a man’s appetite by legislation and makes a crime out of things that are not crimes. A prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded.” Granted, there will still be a select few who will take advantage of this if it were to be made into a law, but I feel that it is a risk worth taking. With legalization, crime will drop so greatly that a few criminals will not affect as many people as would if this prohibition still stood.

So take a second and picture the country with legalization, less crime, more forests, more jobs for farmers, more income for states, medicine for the sick, cheaper clothing and fabrics, and many more practical uses of hemp that the country would benefit from if legalization were to take place, I would be satisfied.Peterson, Dave. Hemp Legalization 16 Nov. 2001 *http://www.

geocities.com/Yosemite/Rapids/2098/Hemp/*.Poholek, Catherine H. Prohibition in the 1920’s 15 Nov. 2001 *http://www.geocities.com/athens/troy/4399/*.Bill Pushes Decriminalizaion of Marijuana National Oganization for the Legalization of Marijuana *http://www.mapinc.org/norml/v01/n1926/a10.htm*Bibliography:

Marijuana

Marijuana What is Marijuana. Marijuana is a green, brown, or gray mixture of dried, shredded leaves, stems, seeds, and flowers of the hemp plant. You may hear marijuana called by street names such as pot, herb, weed, grass, boom, Mary Jane, gangster, or chronic. There are more than 200 slang terms for marijuana. Sinsemilla, hashish, and hash oil are stronger forms of marijuana.All forms of marijuana are mind-altering.

In other words, they change how the brain works. They all contain THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol), the main active chemical in marijuana. They also contain more than 400 other chemicals. Marijuana’s effects on the user depend on the strength or potency of the THC it contains.THC potency of marijuana has increased since the 1970s but has been about the same since the mid-1980s. Ways Marijuana is used.

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Marijuana is usually smoked as a cigarette (called a joint or a nail) or in a pipe or a bong. Recently, it has appeared in cigars called blunts. Amount of time Marijuana stays inside a person’s body.

THC in marijuana is strongly absorbed by fatty tissues in various organs. Generally, traces (metabolites) of THC can be detected by standard urine testing methods several days after a smoking session. However, in heavy chronic users, traces can sometimes be detected for weeks after they have stopped using marijuana.

Marijuana among teens. Contrary to popular belief most teenagers have not used marijuana and never will. Among students surveyed in a yearly national survey, only about one in five 10th graders report they are current marijuana users.

Fewer than one in four high school seniors is a current marijuana user. Why young people use Marijuana.There are many reasons why some children and young teens start smoking marijuana. Most young people smoke marijuana because their friends or brothers and sisters use marijuana and pressure them to try it. Some young people use it because they see older people in the family using it. Others may think it’s cool to use marijuana because they hear songs about it and see it on TV and in movies. Some teens may feel they need marijuana and other drugs to help them escape from problems at home, at school, or with friends. Effects of Marijuana use.

The effects of the drug on each person depend on the user’s experience, as well as: how strong the marijuana is (how much THC it has); what the user expects to happen; where (the place) the drug is used; how it is taken; and whether the user is drinking alcohol or using other drugs.Some people feel nothing at all when they smoke marijuana. Others may feel relaxed or high. Sometimes marijuana makes users feel thirsty and very hungry, an effect usually called the munchies. Short term effects of Marijuana use. Some users can get bad effects from marijuana.

They may suffer sudden feelings of anxiety and have paranoid thoughts. This is more likely to happen when a more potent variety of marijuana is used. The short-term effects of marijuana include: problems with memory and learning distorted perception (sights, sounds, time, touch) trouble with thinking and problem-solving loss of coordination and increased heart rate anxiety These effects are even greater when other drugs are mixed with the marijuana and users do not always know what drugs are given to them. Marijuana and school, sports, as well as other activities.Marijuana affects memory, judgment and perception. The drug can make you mess up in school, in sports or clubs, or with your friends. If you’re high on marijuana, you are more likely to make stupid mistakes that could embarrass or even hurt you. If you use marijuana a lot, you could start to lose interest in how you look and how you’re getting along at school or work.

Athletes could find their performance is off; timing, movements, and coordination are all affected by THC. Also, since marijuana use can affect thinking and judgment, users can forget to have safe sex and possibly expose themselves to HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. Long term effects of Marijuana use.Findings so far show that regular use of marijuana or THC may play a role in some kinds of cancer and in problems with the respiratory, immune, and reproductive systems. Cancer It’s hard to know for sure whether regular marijuana use causes cancer.

But it is known that marijuana contains some of the same, and sometimes even more, of the cancer-causing chemicals found in tobacco smoke. Studies show that someone who smokes five joints per week may be taking in as many cancer-causing chemicals as someone who smokes a full pack of cigarettes every day. Lungs and airways People who smoke marijuana often develop the same kinds of breathing problems that cigarette smokers have: coughing and wheezing.

They tend to have more chest colds than nonusers. They are also at greater risk of getting lung infections like pneumonia. Immune system Animal studies have found that THC can damage the cells and tissues in the body that help protect people from disease.When the immune cells are weakened, you are more likely to get sick. Marijuana leading to the use of other drugs.

It could. Long-term studies of high school students and their patterns of drug use show that very few young people use other illegal drugs without first trying marijuana. For example, the risk of using cocaine is 104 times greater for those who have tried marijuana than for those who have never tried it. Using marijuana puts children and teens in contact with people who are users and sellers of other drugs.So there is more of a risk that a marijuana user will be exposed to and urged to try more drugs. To better determine this risk, scientists are examining the possibility that long-term marijuana use may create changes in the brain that make a person more at risk of becoming addicted to other drugs, such as alcohol or cocaine. While not all young people who use marijuana go on to use other drugs, further research is needed to predict who will be at greatest risk.

Ways to tell if a person is using Marijuana. If someone is high on marijuana, he or she might: seem dizzy and have trouble walking; seem silly and giggly for no reason; have very red, bloodshot eyes; and have a hard time remembering things that just happened. When the early effects fade, over a few hours, the user can become very sleepy.

Medicinal Marijuana. There has been much talk about the possible medical use of marijuana. Under U.S. law since 1970, marijuana has been a Schedule I controlled substance. This means that the drug, at least in its smoked form, has no commonly accepted medical use. THC, the active chemical in marijuana, is manufactured into a pill available by prescription that can be used to treat the nausea and vomiting that occur with certain cancer treatments and to help AIDS patients eat more to keep up their weight.

According to scientists, more research needs to be done on marijuana’s side effects and potential benefits before it is used medically with any regularity. Effects of Marijuana on driving. Marijuana has serious harmful effects on the skills required to drive safely: alertness, the ability to concentrate, coordination, and the ability to react quickly. These effects can last up to 24 hours after smoking marijuana.

Marijuana use can make it difficult to judge distances and react to signals and sounds on the road.Marijuana may play a role in car accidents. In one study conducted in Memphis, TN, researchers found that, of 150 reckless drivers who were tested for drugs at the arrest scene, 33 percent tested positive for marijuana, and 12 percent tested positive for both marijuana and cocaine. Data have also shown that while smoking marijuana, people show the same lack of coordination on standard drunk driver tests as do people who have had too much to drink. Pregnancy and Marijuana. Marijuana has serious harmful effects on the skills required to drive safely: alertness, the ability to concentrate, coordination, and the ability to react quickly.

These effects can last up to 24 hours after smoking marijuana. Marijuana use can make it difficult to judge distances and react to signals and sounds on the road.Marijuana may play a role in car accidents. In one study conducted in Memphis, TN, researchers found that, of 150 reckless drivers who were tested for drugs at the arrest scene, 33 percent tested positive for marijuana, and 12 percent tested positive for both marijuana and cocaine.

Data have also shown that while smoking marijuana, people show the same lack of coordination on standard drunk driver tests as do people who have had too much to drink. Effects of Marijuana on the brain. Some studies show that when people have smoked large amounts of marijuana for years, the drug takes its toll on mental functions.Heavy or daily use of marijuana affects the parts of the brain that control memory, attention, and learning. A working short-term memory is needed to learn and perform tasks that call for more than one or two steps.

Smoking marijuana causes some changes in the brain that are like those caused by cocaine, heroin, and alcohol. Some researchers believe that these changes may put a person more at risk of becoming addicted to other drugs, such as cocaine or heroin. Scientists are still learning about the many ways that marijuana could affect the brain. Marijuana and addiction.Yes. While not everyone who uses marijuana becomes addicted, when a user begins to seek out and take the drug compulsively, that person is said to be dependent or addicted to the drug. In 1995, 165,000 people entering drug treatment programs reported marijuana as their primary drug of abuse, showing they need help to stop using the drug. According to one study, marijuana use by teenagers who have prior serious antisocial problems can quicky lead to dependence on the drug.

Some frequent, heavy users of marijuana develop a tolerance for it.Tolerance means that the user needs larger doses of the drug to get the same desired results that he or she used to get from smaller amounts. Quitting. Up until a few years ago, it was hard to find treatment programs specifically for marijuana users.

Now researchers are testing different ways to help marijuana users abstain from drug use. There are currently no medications for treating marijuana addiction. Treatment programs focus on counseling and group support systems.There are also a number of programs designed especially to help teenagers who are abusers. Family doctors are also a good source for information and help in dealing with adolescent marijuana problems.

Health Care.

Marijuana

Marijuana Hemp is the plant called “cannabis sativa” which is more commonly called marijuana.

Marijuana has been illegal in the U.S. ever since the Great Depression. The question we must ask ourselves is “why?” Why is a drug that has so many beneficial uses illegal? Is it because its poisoning the youth of today? Is it because itleads to harder drugs, the health problems, the addictiveness, the short-term memory impairment, the auto accidents,or is it simply because politicians tell us it is for “our own good?” We have grown up learning that marijuana is a terrible drug, and that using it gives us brain damage, kill all of our brain cells, and makes us lose our memory. The fact is though, that marijuana does not effect us in any of the ways listed above. The idea that marijuana impairs short-term memory is true, but misleading.Any signs of short-term memory impairment vanish once the user is no longer intoxicated. Mainly the reason we think marijuana is bad is because that is what the Partnership for a Drug-Free America wants us to believe.

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They tell us that marijuana will cause brain damage and memory impairment, it will kill brain cells, and lead to more crime. But what they forget to mention is all the benefits we can receive from legalizing marijuana. For example, the medicinal uses, and the textile and construction uses.

It is very likely that legalizing marijuana would decrease the crime rate, and by legalizing marijuana we will save a lot of money because we won’t have to spend it on fighting marijuana as part of the War on Drugs. There are many habits much worse than marijuana, one example being cigarette smoking. “Tobacco smoking kills more people each year than AIDS, heroin, crack, cocaine, alcohol, car accidents, fire and murder combined. Tobacco smoking is the number one cause of preventable death in the US.

Tobacco smokers have 10 times the lung cancer of nonsmokers, twice the heart disease, and are three times more likely to die of heart disease if they develop it. Does it make sense that tobacco is legal and marijuana is not, when so many people die from tobacco smoking each year and there is not one reported case of anyone ever dying from marijuana use in its 10,000 years of consumption? You have probably heard that “one joint is that same as 10 cigarettes,” but this statement is misleading. ALthough marijuana contains the same amount of carcinogens as an equal amount of tobacco and more tar, tobacco is still worse. Every yr 350,000 Americans die from tobacco-related disease according to the American Lung Association.A tobacco smoker consumes much more tobacco than a marijuana smoker consumes marijuana. This is probably because tobacco has a 90% addiction rate while marijuana is less addictive than caffeine. Also, tobacco contains nicotine that may harden the arteries and may be responsible for much of the heart diseases caused by cigarette smoking.

Marijuana on the other hand contains the chemical THC which opens up the lungs and aids in the clearance of smoke and dirt. I think it is safe to say that tobacco smoking is much more dangerous than marijuana smoking. Another bad habit is alcohol, which in my opinion is the worst of all.8,000 American teenagers are killed each year and 40,000 maimed from driving under the influence. The mortality figures for alcohol use are 100,000 annually, compared to the zero marijuana deaths. The amount of marijuana needed to kill someone is 1 to 40,000, while the ratio for alcohol fluctuates between 1 to 4 and 1 to 10.

Not only do many people die each year from alcohol poisoning, but alcohol has caused thousands of fatal car accidents. Although, marijuana, when used to the point of intoxication, impairs judgement and reaction time, actual studies suggest that the effect alcohol has on one’s driving ability is much greater than that of marijuana.In fact, it is found that 85% of marijuana related car accidents also involved alcohol. It is sad to think that a legal drug like alcohol, the drug of choice for most teens, causes so many fatalities on our highways each year, yet marijuana is the drug that is illegal.

I personally feel that marijuana is an amazing plant, and it should be being utilized today. The problem is that most people don’t know the benefits that can come from marijuana. There are many different beneficial ways for which marijuana can be used.Marijuana can be used for medical and textile uses, for food, for fuels, and for the economy.

First of all, marijuana could be used for food. It is believed that enough food is grown worldwide to feed everyone and that famine exists because there are not sufficient means of distribution. So why not let people grow their own marijuana? Marijuana grows like a weed and has few insect pests. It is usually grown without pesticides and chemical fertilizers.Hemp improves the quality of the soil because it is grown without pesticides and chemical fertilizers.

Hemp is not finicky and grows under many different conditions and has one of the largest worldwide distributions of any plant. It is very nutritious and it contains high amounts of protein and essential fatty oils. The average adult can receive an adequate amount of protein and oils from just one handful of hemp seed a day. If this is the case, which it is, why are people starving around the world when the solution is marijuana for food? Hemp could also be used for fuel.

By using marijuana for fuel we could reduce the amount of carbon dioxide that is released into the atmosphere. Hemp can also be used for heating homes. Using marijuana for fuel would not only help our environment save us a lot of money for fuel, but it would also benefit our economy by allowing the country to make huge profits because the cost of growing marijuana is virtually nothing.

Another way marijuana can be used is for clothes, fibers, and paper. Marijuana has been used in the past for textile and construction and should be used today.For example, the first pair of Levi’s jeans were made from marijuana because it is extremely durable. ALso, sailors used marijuana in canvas for their sails because it does become corroded from the sea water.

The pulp fibers of marijuana can be used for making paper, which would reduce the amount of trees that are cut down. One acre of hemp will make the same amount and quality of paper as 4 acres of 20 yr old trees without the need for chlorine in the bleaching process and, creating no toxic dioxin pollutants. What I’m wondering in why haven’t we used marijuana for paper all along? I think it is senseless that are constantly cutting down trees and destroying rain forests when there is another alternative.

There is only 4% of America’s old growth forest still remaining, and yet we are still cutting them down like they will grow back instantly. The fact is that it may …

Marijuana

The legalization of marijuana has been a long debated subject in America since the 1970’s. The pro-marijuana society in America has made several claims as to how marijuana can help cure or lessen the effect of some diseases and that by legalizing the drug; the use of pot will actually decline. The fact of the matter is that marijuana is a drug that can be placed into a similar category as cocaine or heroine. Like these other drugs, pot (marijuana) smoking carries with it serious side effects that can effect the user forever, and sometimes-even cause death.

Marijuana was first cultivated in America during the colonial time period and was used as a fiber for rope and even clothing. The plant was not used for its psychoactive properties until 1910, when Mexican farmers began smuggling it across the boarder for poor black and Mexican workers in the Southern states (Abood Me 202). By the 1930’s marijuana was widespread throughout the U.S.

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, before the Federal Government in 1937 outlawed the use of it. However, marijuana use continued to spread, even with these restrictions and in 1970 the Controlled Substance Act was passed. This act basically categorized marijuana as being a harmful and addictive drug. Presently, marijuana use, especially among teenagers is on the rise once again. Pro-marijuana advocates must ask themselves the question that if marijuana is so great, why is it causing so much damage to the body? Marijuana is comprised of cured leaves and flower clusters from the hemp plant called Cannabis sativa. Cannabis sativa is known as a psychedelic drug because it creates a break from reality. The chemicals found in marijuana are actually much more harmful than chemicals found in other addicting drugs, such as those found in tobacco. The inhalation of any kind of smoke is unhealthy, whether it is in cigarettes or joints (marijuana).

The particles found in the smoke of joints and cigarettes collect in the lungs and over time can cause damage. The marijuana plant has over 400 known chemicals that break down into some 4,000 when smoked (Zweben Je 123). Only a few of these chemicals, such as THC, create the actual “high” that pot smokers look to for their enjoyment, but the many of the others are toxins, or poisons that have been proven to cause cancer. One such cancer-causing chemical is called a carcinogen. An average joint contains 30 monograms of carcinogen in comparison with an average cigarette, which contains only 21 monograms (Kleber 4). Carcinogen has been proven to break down a gene that controls the growth of cells and over time makes the lungs 70% more susceptible to lung cancer.

The way that marijuana cigarettes are smoked- by inhaling and holding the smoke in the lungs creates an even greater risk for exposure to these poisonous chemicals. Other cases are quickly developing that show chronic marijuana users also develop mouth or larynx cancer. If such a drug can cause such devastating health problems, then why legalize it?Besides causing cancer, other long-term side effects can occur. Flu like symptoms can occur that includes eating disorders, chronic bronchitis, and mood swings that may not dissipate for up to 18 months. There is also the psychological effect that marijuana has on the user. Many studies have shown that long time users who tried to quit could not do so, not necessarily because of a powerful withdrawal like that of crack cocaine, but because they missed the actual “high” that marijuana offered.

The “high” is actually causing mental problems as well. Studies done have shown that pot smoking can cause short term memory loss, as well as creating a sort of “fog” in the mind of the user. More serious mental effects include depression and suicide. As one doctor’s journal stated: “It is generally agreed that there is a progressive increase in depressed mood from abstainer to substance user and a corresponding increase in suicide attempts.”(Berman 313) A final problem that marijuana poses is that it is considered a “gateway” drug. A “gateway” drug is one that leads to the use of higher risk substances like cocaine.

In a recent study, children (ages 12-17) were 266 times more likely to use cocaine after using “gateway” drugs then those who did not (Alaskans for a Drug Free Youth Summer). Promoting a drug that can potentially lead to the use of even worse drugs, is not the right way to go about fixing the problems of everyday America. Many pro-marijuana advocates are pushing for the legalization of marijuana strictly for medical purposes. They feel that through certain studies, marijuana can help improve patients with certain diseases. The idea that marijuana can do more good than harm has been proven a worthless theory. One obvious way marijuana can not be effective was explained earlier when it was stated that smoking marijuana could be harmful to the lungs as well as other parts of the body. The reality is that this is very true and was backed by William M.

Bennett M.D., who is listed in the “Best Doctors in America”. He remarked that ” The idea of using smoked marijuana containing carcinogens as medicine, particularly for patients who have suppressed immune systems like those with aids, should be unthinkable. Thus, prior to considering marijuana, one must abide by the old edict, ‘first do no harm'” (Kleber 6).

In looking at this from a governmental position, the FDA never complied with the theory that one can smoke a medication. The United States Court of Appeals backed the FDA in 1992, by deciding that marijuana is not a medicine (http://emailprotected). Several alternatives have also been available to avoid the smoking of marijuana.

Chemicals such as THC, that are said to be needed for medical purposes can be found in oral forms. Nasal sprays and suppositories are just some suggestions that anti-marijuana advocates are pushing. These alternatives allow the patient to receive the needed THC without taking in the thousands of harmful chemicals found by smoking marijuana, which would be much less harmful to the body of the patient. Overall, there is a multitude of legitimate facts, from a wide array of researchers and doctors that prove marijuana is harmful.

Several questions must be answered if the legalization of marijuana is to be taken with any seriousness. What kind of marijuana would be legal and who would it pertain to? Would it only come from the government? If one says that marijuana should only be legal for a medical purpose than vehicular trauma and DUI problems could not only increase but also a medical marijuana defense could easily be used (http://emailprotected). Medical users of marijuana could smoke the drug and then drive or operate some type of machinery. If an accident did occur, the user could justify the accident with a medical excuse.

How will it effect a teen-age society that continues to have a “no big deal” attitude toward smoking pot? How can one say that marijuana smoking will decline if more and more people are using it, and more people have a laxidasical attitude toward its use? These questions are at the very least, difficult to answer. They prove that the American society is in no way ready to think about legalizing marijuana.Words/ Pages : 1,241 / 24

Marijuana

Throughout history marijuana has been used to serve various purposes in many differentcultures. The purposes have changed over timeto fit in with the current lifestyles. This pattern is also true in American history. The use of marijuana has adapted to the socialclimate of the time.

Marijuana, whose scientific name is cannibissativa, was mentioned in historical manuscriptsas early as 2700 B. C. in China.

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(Grolier ElectronicEncyclopedia, 1995). The cultivation of the marijuana plant began as far back as the Jamestown settlers, around 1611, who used hempproduced from the marijuana plant’s fibers to make rope and canvas. It was also used in making clothing because of it’s durability. These uses fit in with the social climate of the time, because the main focus was on survival rather than for psychoactive purposes.During the prohibition, marijuana was widely used because of the scarcity of alcohol. Prohibitionwas repealed after just thirteen years while the prohibitionagainst marijuana lasted for more than seventy five years. This double standard may have resulted from the wishes of those in power. Alcohol prohibition struck directly at tens of millions of Americans of all ages, including many of societies most powerful members.

Marijuana prohibition threatened far fewer Americans, and they had relatively little influence in the districts of power. Only the prohibition of marijuana, which some sixty million Americans have violated since 1965 has come close to approximating the prohibition experience, but marijuana smokers consist mostly of young and relatively powerless Americans (American Heritage, pg 47). Alcohol prohibition was repealed and marijuana prohibition was retained, not because scientists had proved that alcohol was the less dangerousof the various psychoactive drugs, but because of the prejudicesand preferences of most Americans (American Heritage, pg 47).

In 1937 the government issued the Marijuana Tax Act, which levied a dollar an ounce tax on marijuana, coupled with fines of $2,000 for drug posession and jail sentences for evasion of the tax. For thisreason marijuana use in the United States appearsto have gone into decline in the late 30’s(Grolier Wellness Encyclopedia, pg 54).Then marijuana was outlawed in 1937 as arepressive measure against Mexican workerswho crossed the border seekingjobs duringthe Depression. The specific reason given for the outlawing of the hemp plant was it’ssupposed violent “effect on the degenerate races”(Schaffer, pg.

86).Beginning in the 60’s marijuana use saw aresurgence which may be attributed to manycauses. One of the main causes was the rebellion of youth against the Vietnam War.

They used marijuana as an escape from war to peace.It was easy at this time to depict marijuana as a beneficial and completely harmless substancewhose effects were far less harmful than thoseof legal drugs such as alcohol and nicotinebecause there was not enough scientificresearch done during the 60’s (Grolier Wellness Encyclopedia, pg 54).Another cause may have been the discovery ofthe psychoactive component of marijuana-tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as THC.Users found the relation between the doses andthe effects (Grolier Electronic Publishing, 1995).The current atmosphere provides for doctors tosuggest synthetic marijuana (THC) in a pure andstandardized form by perscription (called Marinol)for the treatment of nausea associated with cancer chemotherapy.

Also, although there is noscientific evidence that shows marijuanais beneficial in the treatment of glaucoma,it may prevent the progression of visual loss.Marijuana, along with alcohol and a host ofother substances, can actually lower intraoculareye pressure. The mediction however, must be carefully tailored to the individual to prevent further eye damage.The evidence has clearly shown that marijuana has been around for a great deal of timeand has served multiple purposes throughout history.

Karen S.Dana P.Jeni R.SourcesGrolier Electronic Encylopedia, Electronic Publishing, Inc., 1995Grolier Wellness Encyclopedia, Drugs, Society & Behavior.

Vol. 3, 1992.Ethan A. Nadelmann, American Heritage Magazine,Feb-Mar, 1993. Medical Marijuana, http://www.lec.

org/Drug_Watch/Public/Documents/Med_Marijuana_Paper.htm, 1995.Throughout history marijuana has been used to serve various purposes in many differentcultures. The purposes have changed over timeto fit in with the current lifestyles. This pattern is also true in American history. The use of marijuana has adapted to the socialclimate of the time.

Marijuana, whose scientific name is cannibissativa, was mentioned in historical manuscriptsas early as 2700 B. C. in China. (Grolier ElectronicEncyclopedia, 1995). The cultivation of the marijuana plant began as far back as the Jamestown settlers, around 1611, who used hempproduced from the marijuana plant’s fibers to make rope and canvas. It was also used in making clothing because of it’s durability. These uses fit in with the social climate of the time, because the main focus was on survival rather than for psychoactive purposes.

During the prohibition, marijuana was widely used because of the scarcity of alcohol. Prohibitionwas repealed after just thirteen years while the prohibitionagainst marijuana lasted for more than seventy five years. This double standard may have resulted from the wishes of those in power. Alcohol prohibition struck directly at tens of millions of Americans of all ages, including many of societies most powerful members. Marijuana prohibition threatened far fewer Americans, and they had relatively little influence in the districts of power. Only the prohibition of marijuana, which some sixty million Americans have violated since 1965 has come close to approximating the prohibition experience, but marijuana smokers consist mostly of young and relatively powerless Americans (American Heritage, pg 47). Alcohol prohibition was repealed and marijuana prohibition was retained, not because scientists had proved that alcohol was the less dangerousof the various psychoactive drugs, but because of the prejudicesand preferences of most Americans (American Heritage, pg 47).

In 1937 the government issued the Marijuana Tax Act, which levied a dollar an ounce tax on marijuana, coupled with fines of $2,000 for drug posession and jail sentences for evasion of the tax. For thisreason marijuana use in the United States appearsto have gone into decline in the late 30’s(Grolier Wellness Encyclopedia, pg 54).Then marijuana was outlawed in 1937 as arepressive measure against Mexican workerswho crossed the border seekingjobs duringthe Depression. The specific reason given for the outlawing of the hemp plant was it’ssupposed violent “effect on the degenerate races”(Schaffer, pg. 86).Beginning in the 60’s marijuana use saw aresurgence which may be attributed to manycauses.

One of the main causes was the rebellion of youth against the Vietnam War. They used marijuana as an escape from war to peace.It was easy at this time to depict marijuana as a beneficial and completely harmless substancewhose effects were far less harmful than thoseof legal drugs such as alcohol and nicotinebecause there was not enough scientificresearch done during the 60’s (Grolier Wellness Encyclopedia, pg 54).Another cause may have been the discovery ofthe psychoactive component of marijuana-tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as THC.

Users found the relation between the doses andthe effects (Grolier Electronic Publishing, 1995).The current atmosphere provides for doctors tosuggest synthetic marijuana (THC) in a pure andstandardized form by perscription (called Marinol)for the treatment of nausea associated with cancer chemotherapy. Also, although there is noscientific evidence that shows marijuanais beneficial in the treatment of glaucoma,it may prevent the progression of visual loss.

Marijuana, along with alcohol and a host ofother substances, can actually lower intraoculareye pressure. The mediction however, must be carefully tailored to the individual to prevent further eye damage.The evidence has clearly shown that marijuana has been around for a great deal of timeand has served multiple purposes throughout history. Karen S.

Dana P.Jeni R.SourcesGrolier Electronic Encylopedia, Electronic Publishing, Inc.

, 1995Grolier Wellness Encyclopedia, Drugs, Society & Behavior.Vol. 3, 1992.Ethan A.

Nadelmann, American Heritage Magazine,Feb-Mar, 1993. Medical Marijuana, http://www.lec.org/Drug_Watch/Public/Documents/Med_Marijuana_Paper.htm, 1995.

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