Marijuana (cannabis) is a mixture of leaves, stems, and flowering tops of the Indian hemp plant Cannabis sativa. 4 Marijuana is thought by many to be harmful, but it has been proven in fact to be helpful for some people with certain illnesses. 4
When I first started looking into Medical Marijuana Essay as my research subject, I was curious to see what people my age actually thought about marijuana. I asked twenty of my peers, ranging in age from seventeen to twenty-two, “What is the first thing that comes to mind when I say ‘marijuana’?” The responses shocked me: six of them said “getting high,” four of them said “damaging drug,” and ten of them, fifty percent, said “medical uses.” The response that overwhelmed me the most was “medical uses” because at my age I have not thought much about marijuana being used for medical purposes, but instead for pleasure purposes.
According to Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base: “Marijuana plants have been used since antiquity for both herbal medication and intoxication.” 5 If marijuana has been used since 3000 BC 4 for medical uses, then why is it illegal today for most people to use it for these purposes? An article in CONSUMER REPORTS writes, “For the past decade the Government has refused to provide either money or marijuana to researchers studying the drug’s potential therapeutic effects, so this research has been nearly at a standstill,” quotes one writer for CONSUMER REPORTS. 6“Science should know more about this substance by now, considering how long it has been in use,” agrees Harrison Pope also from CONSUMER REPORTS. 6
Richard Brookhiser wrote in Marijuana Magazine, “A Government-commissioned panel of experts reported that there had been ‘an explosion of new scientific knowledge’ on the medical uses of marijuana.” 1
Some medical professionals argue that there are already man-made drugs used for most of the illnesses that marijuana can be used for. “In fact, there is not one substance in this entire ‘Physician’s Desk Reference’ that is completely harmless,” 9 said Chuck Thomas at the Testimony Before the Institute of Medicinal Marijuana Hearing in New Orleans.
“…while prescription drugs, defined as safe by the FDA, kill up to 27,000 and aspirin up to 1,000 Americans per year, cannabis kills 0 per year,” 2 according to the Bureau of Mortality Statistics. “Nearly all medicines have toxic,
potentially lethal effects, but marijuana is not such a substance…Marijuana in its natural form, is one of the safest active substances known to man. By any measure of rational analysis marijuana can be safely used within a supervised routine of medical core,” 3 the Guardian Newspaper printed in 1993 on the issue.
“Compared with legal drugs…..marijuana does not pose greater risks,” 8 according to the Pharmacological Reviews: Health Aspects of Cannabis.
THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, has been produced in a pill form. Marinol is one of the pills:
“The poor availability of Marinol in aqueous solutions and its high first-pass metabolism in the live account for its poor bioavailability; only 10-20% of an oral dose reaches the systemic circulation. The on set of action is slow; peak plasma concentration are not attained until two or four hours after dosing. In contrast, inhaled marijuana is rapidly absorbed…variation in individual responses is highest for oral THC and bioavailability is lowest. It is well recognized that Marinol’s oral route of administration hampers its effectiveness because of slow absorption and patients’ desire for more control over dosing.” 5
“The pharmaceutical industry and regulatory system are addicted to the cult of synthesis.
It’s as if every drug has to come out of a factory. God forbid that it might be natural. There’s an attitude that man can create a better ‘Garden of Eden’ scientifically,” 3 was one person’s view.
“‘Cannabis is one of humanity’s oldest medicines, with a remarkable record of both safety and efficiency,’ insists Dr. Lester Grinspoon whose unflinching advocacy of cannabis caused a storm in America and even led to death threats, ‘ I’d like to see the day when full potential of cannabis is recognized,’ he says. ‘Then it will be seen in the same light as other so-called wonderdrugs: penicillin, aspirin and insulin.
People will look back .