Essay about Medical Marijuana

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Marijuana Can Change the World

To the AIDS or cancer patient, marijuana is the plant that fights nausea and appetite loss. To the nutritionist, its seed is second only to the soybean in nutritional value and is a source of cooking oil and vitamins. To the paper or cloth manufacturer, it is the plant that provided much of our paper and clothing for hundreds of years and produces four times more fiber per acre than trees. To the environmentalist, it is the plant that could greatly slow deforestation, restore robbed nutrients by other crops, and help prevent erosion. According to Lonnelle Aikman, "Preliminary findings show the drug may prove effective against glaucoma and asthma, and control such side nausea in cancer treatment"(158).
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Before deciding whether marijuana should be legal or illegal, one needs to know some basic facts. Lester Grinspoon, M.D. and James B. Bakalar note
"most botanists agree that there are three species of marijuana; Cannabis sativa, the most widespread of the three, is tall, gangly, and loosely branched, growing as high as twenty feet; Cannabis indica is shorter, about three or four feet in height, pyramidal in shape and densely branched; Cannabis ruderalis is about two feet high with few or no branches"
They also say
"Cannabis has become one of the most widespread and diversified of plants. It grows as weed and cultivated plant all over the world in a variety of climates and soils" (page 1, Librarything.com) Marijuana was first cultivated in China around 4000 B.C. It was mainly used as a sedative and analgesic, but today it is commonly used for the "high" or the euphoric feeling it causes. The most active ingredient in marijuana is delta-9-tetrahydrocannibinal commonly referred to as THC, which wasn't discovered until the 1960s. Marijuana is illegal today because of the Marijuana Stamp Tax Act passed in 1937. This act prohibited the use, sale, and growing of marijuana. It was made illegal because no one understood why smoking marijuana made people feel the way they did, and because it was associated with Indians and other so called "immoral people." Today marijuana is illegal because

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