Research has demonstrated that cannabis sativa use is medically advantageous, and legalization would render to have a positive impact. The United States government should legalize cannabis sativa, also known as marijuana, for medicinal use. Marijuana can provide relief to those suffering with diseases that cannot be treated with modern medicine. On the contrary, marijuana can provide a psychoactive high and has been known to be addictive. However, according to the federal government, marijuana has no medicinal value and offers an extremely high potential for abuse (O’Keefe, 2013). Marijuana is also thought to be harmful and detrimental substance (O’Keefe, 2013). History illustrates marijuana use for many millennia to treat diseases and also has many other uses. The government has deemed marijuana to be a threat to society. Studies have shown; marijuana could be the most prosperous and versatile herb for medicinal purpose. An individual suffering from multiple sclerosis was not finding relief from traditional medications when marijuana was introduced it reduced his suffering (Leung, 2011). Another individual suffered from seizures at a young age and combinations of pharmaceutical drugs were not controlling the disease. Cannabis oil is now being used and effectively controlling her seizures (Young, 2013).
There is widespread controversy across the United States on the use of medical marijuana. Medical marijuana needs to be legalized to benefit the individuals suffering from diseases that cannot be treated by modern day medicine. There is a stigma attached to marijuana by the federal government, various states, and the public. Marijuana is a natural and effective medicine shown to assist patients for minor and major illnesses (Wright, 2011).
The cannabis plant has been harvested for many millennia. The useful plant has a woody, fibrous stem which can be made into woven canvas, clothing, rope, canvas, sacks, sails, drapes, tents and paper to name a few. Cannabis is a Dutch word that means canvas. The first two drafts of the Declaration of Independence were written on hemp paper (Bendis, 2012). Doctors and healers have turned to the medicinal benefits of cannabis for more than 5 millennia (Thomas, 2010). The plant is a native plant of Central and South Asia (Wright, 2011). There is evidence found in archaeological sites dating back many centuries across the world. Archaeologists have identified fibers from cannabis dating back to 4000 B.C. An ancient document was discovered which dated back to the Chinese Han dynasty 206-BC – 220 AD. Paper was found that in a tomb that talked about cannabis. Clay pots with markings on them suggested twisted fibers were used as a decoration; the twisted fiber is thought to be hemp (Wright, 2011). A fragment of rope found in Scotland dating back to 80 A.D. contains evidence of hemp. There is physical evidence of medicinal and pleasurable use of cannabis date back to 1070 B.C. An ancient document found in Scotland illustrated the use of marijuana for both its fiber and medicinal purposes. Another document found which mentions cannabis is dated around 1550 B.C. In China around 2000 B.C., Emperor Shen Nung spoke of the cannabis plant being used to treat medical tribulations such as rheumatism, antidepressant, anticonvulsant, and digestive disorders (Wallace, 2011). Throughout Asia, Africa and the Middle East women used cannabis for pain during childbirth (Bendis, 2012). Cannabis was introduced into Europe in the middle of the 19th century. The Puritans brought marijuana to North American in the 1600’s. Clothing, the fabric for drape, bedding were all made from hemp until the invention of the cotton gin. For seven thousand years the cannabis plant and its compounds were legal and prescribed for the treatment of many medical conditions. (Bendis, 2012).
In modern times, individuals who suffer from cancer and neurological diseases have