January 20, 2015
Medical Marijuana in the 21st Century
I believe that marijuana should be considered a legitimate natural, medicinal choice in the 21st century. Medical marijuana is an effective treatment for certain conditions. It improves neurological conditions and decreases pain symptoms in many people. Currently marijuana is mostly prescribed to adults but in some rare cases, it may also be prescribed to minors. There have been case studies that show how medical marijuana can be an effective treatment for certain conditions and symptoms, but the use of recreational marijuana is not a necessity and does not add enough societal benefit to outweigh the negative consequences.
On November 5th, 1996 fifty-six percent of voters approved Proposition 215 in California1. Proposition 215 would remove state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess a "written or oral recommendation" from their physician that he or she "would benefit from medical marijuana.”12 Patients with a medical marijuana identification card are allowed to carry to twenty-eight point five grams for personal consumption; anything over this limit will lead to six months in prison43. In order to obtain a legal cannabis card certain steps must be taken. A cannabis doctor must ensure that your condition is worthy of a card and then must write a prescription for your card, after all documentation is completely filled out a $100 fee is required to then receive your personal card4. In some rare cases a minor will be prescribed medical marijuana. In order for this to take place both a doctor’s signature and a parent signature must be signed on the proper documents. Following California, twenty-one more states have legalized the use of medical marijuana. This shows that California had taken initiative to provide the use of marijuana in order to benefit the patients that need it. Other states that have followed California are also starting to see the benefit in medicinal marijuana. Currently twenty-two states have legalized the use of medical marijuana. In 2009 attorney general Eric Holder said that he would not spend federal resources to prosecute medical marijuana users who are complying with state laws on medical marijuana.5.He also states that he would go after illegal activity using medical marijuana as a front. Other states have started to look into legalizing marijuana but continue to only recognize traditional drugs for medical use. Washington State sees medical marijuana as a sensible treatment for patients with certain conditions and legalized it in June of 1998.Activists who believe in medical cannabis work with other state activists to rally and push the legalization of medical marijuana nationally. Cannabis is a naturally occurring plant. For medicinal use, its compounds are extracted directly from the plant and are not made in a laboratory. There are two main strain groups of marijuana, cannabis sativa and cannabis indica. These can then be broken down into different strains within these two groups. Many strains are cross-hybrids between two or more different plants that each have unique qualities including denseness, color, taste, smell, and feeling. Generally speaking, sativa strains give a more uplifting feeling and contain more THC (Delta9-Tetrahydrocannabidiol), the psychoactive chemical giving the “high” sensation. On the other hand indica strains tend to give a heavy and relaxing feeling and tend to contain more CBD (cannabidiol) levels that help more with pain relief. Studies have found that CBDs can reduce the growth of cancer cells6. Deaths have been recorded from the misuse of laboratory made medications. No deaths have occurred from the overdose of marijuana. It is important for people to know that marijuana has been studied extensively. It has been determined that its different properties are effective for different symptoms and...
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