In the US, the idea of legalizing marijuana has been a matter of discussion over the past years. The federal law categorizes the plant as one of the illegal substances that its possession can lead to charges in court. The states’ policies have different regulations as some of them have legalized its use for medicinal purposes. The variation in opinion between the national and state governments poses a significant conflict. This implies that some areas permit the use of cannabis within the country while other regions prohibit it. There are some side effects associated with the consumption of the plant, such as breathing problems and increased heartbeat, which creates another perception. Marijuana can be useful and effective if used appropriately for the right purpose, irrespective of the limitations it possesses.
There are several advantages associated with the use of marijuana. First, it is helpful in pain management, especially after crucial processes such as chemotherapy and other disorders that cause severe aches. When a person consumes the substance, its chemical component called tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) interacts with cannabinoid receptors of the body, thus inducing temporary relief from the anguish. This would make the victim feel less or no aching based on the condition (Borodovsky & Budney, 2018). In most cases, doctors prescribe its use to enable the patients who are experiencing extreme pain to have a reduced level of suffering.
Second, cannabis is important in managing and treating different types of illnesses. Medical marijuana is effective in helping patients suffering from conditions such as epilepsy, Crohn’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), glaucoma, and Alzheimer’s disorder. Individuals suffering from the sickness when subjected to cannabis treatment their health status improve. Therefore, the plant is essential for medicinal purposes based on its value to the management of various illnesses.
Third, legalizing marijuana would lead to a reduction of straining on the criminal justice system. In most cases, many people have been convicted for possessing and using the plant hence being subjected to the court order. Assuming the government legalize marijuana, several individuals will not be arrested, thus creating room for the judiciary to handle other criminal issues (Mitra & Virani, 2019). Similarly, it will minimize the overcrowding in the prison facilities as the number of persons sentenced will decline.
Lastly, allowing people to grow the herb will increase commercial activities. People will sell the substance hence raising income for their developmental purposes. In addition, the government would collect taxes, thus increasing revenue for both the state and federal governments. When individuals have the freedom to access the herb, the level of crimes connected to accessing it will also drop in the country.
Despite the advantages of using cannabis, the herb has some side effects associated with its consumption. First, there will be reduced safety at the workplace as most people, after consuming the herb, will have a lower level of concentration, thus can cause accidents. For example, drivers may likely involve in road crush after using cannabis while driving. This will put the lives of many people at risk.
Second, legalizing the herb will increase the ease of accessing it, thus making young adults use it. Based on their inquisitive nature, children will tend to consume cannabis to taste how it feels. This would lead to a high level of drug use amongst the youth in the country hence putting their lives in danger. Therefore, marijuana should not be openly accessible so that minors may not have the chance of using it.
Third, its effect of altering the mind can cause impaired judgement amongst the users. When individuals use marijuana over a long period, their ability to think rationally tends to reduce, thus increasing their chances of making reckless decisions that might affect them and their family members (Smart & Pacula, 2019). Furthermore, it can lead to mental health problems hence making an individual have issues such as hallucinations, fear and panic.
In relation to the debate of legalizing marijuana, the herb should be made legal, and the citizens should be allowed to use it for both medicinal purposes. Individuals should consume the drug if the doctor prescribes it based on their health condition. Cannabis, when used effectively, adds significant value to the health of people. During the process of making cannabis plants legal in the country, there should be consistency and justice where the former will allow all the states in the US to accept and adhere to the regulation enabling its use. The latter will ensure the rights and freedom of citizens against the usage are respected; hence in case of violation, there should be accountability.
In conclusion, marijuana serves different purposes in the lives of people. It is helpful in assisting patients in managing chronic pain, treating some disease conditions and generating income for both the nation and individual. In spite of the merits associated with cannabis, it imposes a threat to consumers. Users may experience changes such as hallucinations due to brain impairment. The country should legalize its use to facilitate medicinal usage to better the lives of people.
Borodovsky, J. T., & Budney, A. J. (2018). Cannabis regulatory science: Risk–benefit considerations for mental disorders. International Review of Psychiatry, 30(3), 183-202. Web.
Mitra, S., & Virani, S. (2019). The implementation of marijuana legalization in New York. Psychiatric Services, 70(7), 625-628. Web.
Smart, R., & Pacula, R. L. (2019). Early evidence of the impact of cannabis legalization on cannabis use, cannabis use disorder, and the use of other substances: Findings from state policy evaluations. The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, 45(6), 644-663. Web.