Argumentative Essay On Medical Marijuana

1666 Words7 Pages
Over the past few years, medical marijuana has become a popular issue in the public domain. More states are legalizing the drug for medical use. On one hand, an increasing amount of people believe that marijuana alleviates pain, nausea, and other ailments. On the other hand, many still argue that not enough research on the subject has been conducted to justify rescheduling marijuana and that it creates harmful social effects. This multi-faceted issue not only raises medical and political debates but bioethical debates as well. For example, when debating between the pros and cons people list about medical marijuana biomedical principles such as nonmaleficence and beneficence clash with one another. Contrary to popular belief, policy debates surrounding medical marijuana are not new, Congress and the Supreme Court have discussed the issue for decades. After the hippie-movement in the 1960s publicized marijuana and its potential benefits, medical marijuana became a popular concept. Medical Marijuana first appeared in courts in 1976 (although the government had already started funding cannabis research (Zielinski, 2001). In this case the Supreme Court ruled that according to the Common Law Doctrine of Necessity, glaucoma patient Robert Randall could legally grow medical marijuana, which he claims kept him from becoming blind (Zielinski, 2001). For the next 10 years legislation, around medical marijuana primarily focused on research. These acts include the Controlled Substances Therapeutic Research Act in 1978 at the urging of a cancer patient and research grants for THC research (procon.org). Additionally, in 1981 New Mexico declared that marijuana had medical value, the first state to make such a statement (procon.org). Other progressive steps in legalizing medical marijuana happened as well. 1981 also saw the formation of the first lobbyist organization for medical marijuana, the Alliance for Cannabis Therapeutics (Rosenfeld, 2010). Additionally, the government funded research paid off and between 1981 and 1985 a synthetic THC was developed and approved as a nausea medication by the FDA (Scott, 1994). However, the Reagan administration saw huge setbacks for the medical marijuana industry. Throughout the
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