Marijuana as Medicine?

Essay by UHsheppCollege, UndergraduateA, December 2003

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Does marijuana actually constitute a medicine? Although marijuana does temporarily alleviate the pain, it does not constitute a medicine. Marijuana has been used as a medicine and an intoxicant for thousands of years in many different parts of the world. In the United States, state and local laws have prohibited the use of marijuana since the early 1900's and by federal law since 1937. Many young adolescents experiment with this drug between the ages of twelve and eighteen. This is mainly due to curiosity, and not knowing the effects of it. Marijuana has many street and slang names including: pot, green, herb, weed, Mary Jane, chronic, and hash. Scientists like to use the scientific name for it, Cannabis. Young teens and people who smoke marijuana feel that being "High" makes them feel more relaxed and stress free. A marijuana high can give a person a false sense of having important new ideas and achieving new understanding about life.

Not only can marijuana be addictive to some extent, regular users can become dependent on the drug and have difficulty in stopping its use. Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines medicine as, "A substance or preparation used in treating disease, something that affects well being ,and the science and art dealing with the maintenance of health and the prevention, alleviation, or cure of disease." It is certain that marijuana is not a medicine because it does more damage to ones body than good.

The definition of medicine is clearly stated as a substance that is

administered in the treatment of disease, or preventing other damage

to the body or mind, but how can this be a medicine when twenty percent of the

population smoke marijuana for pleasure and not for medical purposes? First of

all, marijuana is not even a legal substance and is...