Medical Marijuana

Essay by tchiudaUniversity, Master'sA, February 2007

download word file, 23 pages 5.0


The purpose of this paper is to state firmly to the reader that the following statement should be resolved affirmatively. Resolved: "That a competent person who is diagnosed with an incurable illness and who is suffering great pain that can only be alleviated by the medicinal use of marijuana should be able to obtain a prescription from a licensed medical physician and have that prescription filled by a licensed pharmacist with marijuana obtained from a licensed drug manufacturing company with FDA approval." There are many reasons to affirm this position and this paper will focus on the legal, ethical, and business reasons medical marijuana should be allowed for patient treatment.

First, the paper will review the history of marijuana and show how it has been used to benefit patients for hundreds of years and also describe how marijuana reached its current restricted place in the United States' legal system.

Second, the paper will describe how the use of medical marijuana is prevented by the United States government's reliance on the commerce clause and its classification of marijuana as a Schedule I drug to prevent use or research of the drug. Current court cases and the correct interpretation of proper legal action will show that the use of the commerce clause is an overreach of power by the federal government and the labeling of marijuana as a Schedule I drug is legally incorrect. By overreaching, the federal government is stripping constitutional rights from its citizens and denying them the medical treatment they deserve.

Third, the ethics of denying incurable patients access to medication that can alleviate suffering will be discussed. Both the teleological and deontological viewpoints are reviewed as the ethical systems justify using marijuana to treat patients from different points of view. Lastly a doctor's responsibility and the responsibility...