Illegal drug use is a major problem in the world today. Millions of dollars are spent every year to prevent the distribution of drugs. All drugs is smuggled into the United States concealed in false compartments, fuel tanks, seats, tires of private and commercial vehicles, pickup trucks, vans, mobile homes, and horse trailers (Pierson. 12-8-01) Large shipments is usually smuggled in tractor-trailer trucks in false compartments and in bulk shipments, such as agricultural products. The government has created ways to cut down on drugs. Yet the drug crisis is greater today then ever. Marijuana is one the most widely used illegal drug. Over the past thirty years the government has condemned Marijuana. So in this paper, I will be describing the pros and some cons about the use of Marijuana. Marijuana use should be legalized because of the beneficial uses that our economy can gain from weed. Marijuana, also spelled Marihuana comes from the Indian hemp plant, cannabis sativa (Gwinn. Pg.764). It is a crude tobacco like substance produced by drying the leaves and flowery top of the cannabis plant. It is put into pipes or formed into joints, similar to a cigarette, for smoking. Recently, it has appeared in cigars called blunts.
The drug is a mild hallucinogen meaning that it distorts sensory perceptions. Marijuana has a wide variety of street names including pot, tea, grass and weed (Dudley. pg. 21) Marijuana can also be added to foods such as brownies and beverages. The intoxication part of the plant is mostly in its strong-smelling, sticky, golden resin. The hemp flowers, especially those of the female plant, gives the strong smell off. Many users describe two phases of marijuana effects as initial stimulation, giddiness, and euphoria, followed by sedation and pleasant tranquility. Mood changes can often accompany altered perceptions of time and space of one’s bodily dimension (Gwinn. pg.765). The hemp plant can be found growing as a weed or as a cultivated plants in peoples homes. Marijuana can survive in almost any soils and climates. And the more potent varieties grow in dry, hot, and wasteland type environments (Pierson. 12-8-01) Marijuana varies in potency, depending on where and how it is grown and prepared for use or stored.
The active ingredient, tetrahydrocanabinol (THC) or also known as Hashish or Resin, is present in all parts of both male and female plants, but is most concentrated in the resin which appears in the flowering tops of the female. Resin is like a goody bag to Marijuana users because its a sticky, gooey, liquid which is collected in pipes (Gwinn. 764). They scrape it from the crevasses of the pipe and smoke it out of bongs or pipes. The THC was first identified in the mid-1960. Its chemical structure is complex and unique making it unlike that of any other psychoactive drug. There are also four hundred twenty chemicals in the marijuana plant besides THC, but they do not cause the same effect (Mann. pg. 98) This is the main reason marijuana is the most frequently used illegal drug. Marijuana cultivation in the United States can be traced back to at least 400 years ago (Sloman. pg. 221) For most of our nation’s history, farmers grew marijuana for its fiber content. Colonialists planted the first American hemp crop in 1611 near Jamestown Virginia. Most of the sails and ropes on colonial ships were made from hemp, as were many of the colonists bible, clothing and maps (Schaeffer. 12-10-01) Marijuana first earned recognition as an intoxicant in the 1920’s and 1930’s (Schaeffer. 12-10-01) The use of marijuana causes destruction of brain tissues and nerve centers, and does irreparable damage.
If continued, inevitable results in insanity, which those familiar with it describe it as incurable, and, without exception ending in death (Schaeffer. 12-10-01) Marijuana must be recognized as a deadly drug and American children must be protected against it. Hemp plants possess several alkaloids, which produce interesting effects in people who use them in many ways. To put it another way, people can get high from the plant. The hemp plant it no more dangerous then the coffee bean . Another fact is that Marijuana also happens to be of significant therapeutic value for a great number of people. Marijuana relieves intra-ocular pressure, which is useful for those suffering from glaucoma. Marijuana has been shown to be of significant value in reducing the extreme nausea resulting from chemotherapy, greatly assisting those who suffer from cancer and AIDS in their fight for life. The feeling of extreme hunger is called the munchies. Munchies is good for peoples with AIDS that are going through the AIDS wasting- syndrome.
Which makes them unable to eat normally which has the similar case with people that suffer from cancer. The medical use of cannabis is varied in many ways. It has been found to relieve the pain spasms associated with several forms of multiple sclerosis, post-polio syndrome, epilepsy, and certain types of spinal and cranial injuries (Nahas. pg. 250) If someone is in extreme intoxication of weed may cause visual hallucinations, anxiety, depression, extreme variability of mood, paranoid reactions, or also may go into a psychoses type personality lasting from four to six hours. Most people get red eyes, dryness of the mouth and throat, and a feeling of happiness when they smoke weed, which is a sign of vascular dilation that indicates Marijuana might also be of use in the relief of migraine headaches. After the full effects of the weed is over, some people may go through an after phase called the downing phase.
A person may experience drowsiness, unsteadiness, and an urge for food. All of this points to the fact that there is significant medical promise in the hemp plant. Marijuana has a lot of down sides as well as benefits. If you are caught with a gram of Marijuana on you, you could be fined big time. The physical down sides of Marijuana is short-term memory or anotherwards, forgetfulness (Mann. pg. 45) It may stay in your system for at least a month or more causing you to have a hard time with your job (Mann. pg. 46) Many jobs do require random drug tests, in which if you fail, you could possibly lose your job. Marijuana also kills your sex organs. In males it kills your sperm cells which may make you unfertile. And in females, it kills your egg cells which also makes you unfertile (Nahas. pg. 316)
Although it is true that there has been no proven studies that marijuana is indeed a life threatening drug (O’Brien pg. 70) But it has been proven that marijuana is a safe, versatile, and inexpensive medicine (Nahas. pg. 58-59) And what makes it even better is that it has been proven that marijuana is less toxic and dangerous than most of the prescriptions drugs given to you by your doctors which you trust (Nahas. pg. 111) Marijuana is a useful and misunderstood substance. If more studies are done, it can be a helpful assistance to the economy (Skidmore. 12-7-01) Marijuana was legal for many years and we didn’t have a big drug problem like today. Marijuana laws, the threat of jail and fines will not stop drug use. All they do is make it harder to help people (Skidmore. 12-7-01) As to me, I respect the right of people to control their own bodies. I believe we should legalize weed, and help those who need it, and let the police spend their time protecting us from real crime. I also believe our society should have a more opened mind on the hemp plant and really see the up side uses of marijuana.