Marijuana: Hemp and First-offense Marijuana Possession Essay

Submitted By Blythe7780
Words: 643
Pages: 3

The legalization of marijuana in certain states is a topic of discussion on both sides of the topic. Can legalization lead to more of an addiction problem in our country or is it a “safe” drug that can help people with certain ailments live a better life? The debate for both sides has good points and bad points. In this paper, I will look at different scenarios and list the pros and cons of both the legalization of marijuana or keeping it an illegal drug. In the 1600’s, American’s made hemp for rope, sails, and clothing. Marijuana is the mixture of dried, shredded flowers and leaves that comes from the hemp plant. In the early 1900’s, Mexicans fleeing to the United States, introduced the use of marijuana to the recreational use of the plant. By 1931, twenty nine states outlawed the use of marijuana. In 1951, stricter sentencing laws were put in place. A first-offense marijuana possession carries a minimum sentence of 2-10 years and a fine up to $20,000. However, in 1970, these mandatory penalties were repealed by Congress due to the ineffectiveness of the penalties. In 1973, the Drug Enforcement Agency was created. Towards the end of the 70’s, parents were fighting stronger regulations of marijuana. This led to the movement in the 1980’s of the War on Drugs. In 1986, President Ronald Reagan raised the federal penalties for possession and dealing of marijuana. In 1996, California passed Proposition 215 which allowed the sale and the use of marijuana for medical purposes. (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/dope/etc/cron.html). The state of Iowa just recently passed a bill called the “Medical Cannabidioal Act." The bill gives the person suffering from epilepsy and the people who care for them, to have a defense if they are busted with the oil. They are, however, limited to the amount that they can have and they, at this time, are not able to purchase the oil in the state of Iowa. They have to travel to a state that allows out of state people to purchase the oil. In the scenario of a an HIV patient, whose doctor recommends smoking small amounts of marijuana to relieve pain, this patient would be denied in the state of Iowa due to it not being epileptic related and the state only allows the oil. In 2007, investigators at Columbia University published clinical trial data in 2007 reporting that HIV/AIDS patients who inhaled cannabis four times daily experienced "substantial increases in food intake with little evidence of discomfort and no impairment of cognitive performance." They concluded, "Smoked marijuana has a clear medical…