Medical Marijuana: Reasons for National Legality

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Alex Vajskop
Medical Marijuana: Reasons for National Legality
The use of marijuana has become a recent topic of debate and decisions about its legality will happen in the near future. The following paragraphs will provide you with the information needed to fully understand the debate, and take a stance as to what should be done. A mere fifteen years ago it was illegal to farm, process, possess or consume marijuana. Then came Proposition 215. Proposition 215 is a California law concerned with the use of marijuana. It allows patients with a valid doctor’s recommendation to possess and cultivate marijuana for medical applications. Since this law was enacted fifteen additional states as well as Washington, D.C. have passed laws allowing the use of medical marijuana.

The science of marijuana is actually quite complex, and not many people know the facts or understand why it is illegal. Marijuana is a plant that is broken down into two species, cannabis indica and cannabis sativa. From those two species come specific strains, which have varying grades and different effects on the body (Green). The grade a certain strain of marijuana receives depends of the amount of THC that is contained within the plant, usually between 1 and 20%. THC is tetrahydrocannabinol and it is the main psychoactive ingredient found in marijuana. The higher amount of THC, the higher the grade. There are over 400 components in marijuana but THC is the forerunner, with cannabidiol and cannabinol coming in as close runner-ups (Keel). THC produces the euphoric high associated with consuming marijuana, while cannabidiol provides pain relief and cannabinol heightens the disorienting effects of the drug (Keel). Although most people are familiar with the smoking of marijuana, it is also consumed in a variety of cannabis products including cookies, candies, breath strips and soda pop. The method of intake impacts the amount of time it takes to go into effect and leave the system. When marijuana...
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