Legislature of Legalization
Medicinal Legalization of Marijuana
For many years now, there has been great controversy surrounding the illegal drug marijuana. Its widespread use since the Vietnam War has caused many people to speak for and against marijuana and its uses. However, in the recent past, a completely new controversy has arisen surrounding the use of marijuana: its medical benefits. After years of give and take, it is time for us to legalize marijuana for medical purposes. This is not the kind of use a common drug addict would seek, but rather a drug to comfort for terminally or critically ill people.
In the past when "old-time" doctors prescribed a variety of medicines for ailments, drugs of all sorts were accepted. However, in modern times, as more stable drugs have been developed, public concern regarding recreational drug use has grown. It is ignorance and a fear of the unknown that has helped fuel this concern.
Furthermore, governmental policies over the years have done less and less to dispel this ignorance. (Terkel 21).
Marijuana use was restricted in 1937 by the Marijuana Tax Act. (Brecher 16). The bill, modeled after the Harrison Narcotic Act of 1914 that did not ban marijuana, but rather recognized its medical uses. The bill did specify, however, that physicians, veterinarians, druggists, growers, importers, manufacturers, and "compounders" of marijuana had to pay a tax in order to continue either prescribing or continuing their work with marijuana. Only non-medicinal, untaxed possession or sale of marijuana was outlawed. (Terkel 27). The tax, even in 1937, showed an awareness that marijuana was worthy consideration beneficial in the medical arena.
During the Vietnam War, drug use among teens and soldiers increased tremendously, prompting President Nixon to declare a war on drugs in June of 1971. One of the steps in this...