Marijuana- also called weed, pot, grass, bud, ganja, Mary Jane and a whole host of other names in slang, is a greenish-gray mixture of a dried form of the flowers from the Cannabis sativa plant. It contains compounds that alter the mind which include tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). It is one of the most abused drugs in the world. It also contains over 400 other chemicals that cause the 'high” in users. THC is the chemical that causes a mind-altering state that classifies marijuana as a “drug”. The CBD part of it is the reason it is the most associated with creating the medical benefit. Ways marijuana can be used are as a joint (cigarette) or in a dry pipe or in a water pipe such as a “bong”. It can also be mixed into food and brewed as a tea.
Effects of Marijuana
When people use marijuana, they usually feel the effects of the smoke, when it is inhaled, within minutes. The heart rate goes up, balance and coordination are altered. They are in a “dreamy” state of mind. These effects will usually increase within the first 30 minutes of use. Some short-term effects usually wear off within two to three hours, but depending on the person, it could last longer. It also depends on how much is used, the potency of the THC and other drugs that a person may have introduced into the mix of the joint, pipe or bong.
Medically, this causes a very severe impact on the lungs. Some other symptoms may include, sore throat and chest colds. One. joint is equal to as much cancer producing chemicals as four to five cigarettes. The mental part of the marijuana is just as severe. People who use will usually have poor memory and mental aptitude than people who do not use the drug. They also have found that in young adults, those who are using have abnormalities in the brain that are related to emotion, motivation and making decisions. It will also affect every major organ in the body.
Who Uses Marijuana Regularly
Marijuana is the most used illicit drug according to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. It is used by more men than women. Its use is among adolescents and young adults. According to the annual survey conducted by the Monitoring the Future which is a survey conducted annually of drug use, and the attitudes among the Nation’s middle and high school students. It is used by 8th, 10th and 12th graders in the middle to late 1990’s and then began a period of gradual decline through the mid 2000’s before it leveled off. According to an article done by ABC News by Dr. Kelly Apps on April 13, 2018, 10,000 workers were surveyed. 14.6% answered yes to the question asked, “Did you use marijuana or hashish in the last 30 days?” Use was more common in males and among young people. Nearly 30% of those in the 18 to 25-year-old range reported at least one use in the last 30 days. The professions that use marijuana included food preparation and serving, arts, design, entertainment, sports and media.
Why is Marijuana Controversial?
Marijuana is controversial because it is deep rooted in America’s history and it is also affecting everyday life in the U.S. The policy of marijuana affects Americans economically and health-wise. The government must also deal with the other areas that are influenced by this drug such as legislation and regulation. American policy which was at first very lenient and was encouraged for being distributed and produced, is the total opposite of today’s thinking and policies. For example, how can the policy of medical marijuana switch from being a vital part of American agriculture, to now being totally outlawed throughout our country? Concerns remain about its use, particularly for recreational reasons. This also includes its effect on health and its potential to open doors to other drug use in the future.
Pros and Cons of Marijuana Use
The following examples of the pros to marijuana use include the following: the legalization of marijuana for medical reasons was viewed as favorable by Americans which included members of the medical community and Congress.
Some other reasons were that marijuana is effective on relieving nausea and vomiting which was caused by chemotherapy to treat cancer. It can relive spastic muscles that is associated with MS (Multiple Sclerosis). Another pro was that it can treat appetite loss which was associated with HIV/Aids and certain types of cancers. It can help with neuropathy and pain management. Lastly, it doesn’t have to be smoked to be medically beneficial and it has been used for centuries without incident as a medicinal agent.
The following examples for the cons to marijuana use included: frequent use could seriously affect short-term memory, impair cognitive skills or abilities, can damage lung tissue, contains cancer-causing compounds and/or chemicals, carries a risk of abuse and addiction, it has been named as a high percentage of automobile crashes and workplace accidents. Marijuana is illegal under federal law. It is classified as a Schedule I drug in the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). Because of this classification, it states that it has no medicinal value which is accepted currently.
In my opinion, marijuana can be a useful drug and should be more available to the public because it has been proven to help with many disorders. For example, depression, bi-polar disorder, anxiety and various other diseases and disorders. I also feel that it should be treated like alcohol, where you can use it or consume it, if you are within the legal limit of the law. Once you fail the legal limit, then you can be charged accordingly to stop people from abusing it.