Opponents of medical marijuana have given many reasons for why it should not be legalized. One of the main reasons they argue is that “Marijuana smoke contains known carcinogens and produces dependency in users” (Medical). In many studies it has shown that it does have some harm such as the harms associated with smoking, but the National Academy of Science affirmed that “marijuana’s short term medical benefits outweigh any smoking-related harms for some patients”(Medical). Though marijuana has been proven to be damaging to the lungs than tobacco, a study in 2006 “found no evidence that marijuana smokers had higher rates of lung cancer” (Medical Marijuana). The FDA has tested the effectiveness of marijuana and has found that the cannabinoids are helpful in “treating pain associated with chemotherapy, postoperative recovery, and spinal cord injury, as well as neuropathic pain, which is often experienced by patients with metastatic cancer, multiple sclerosis,[and] diabetes” (Medical Marijuana).
There is also no evidence shown that patients who use marijuana become addicted. Though the opposing side argues this, they show no evidence in supporting this claim, which therefore, the claim is invalid. There are many pharmaceutical drugs used for treatment and they are addictive, yet it’s legal. Also carcinogens can have a negative effect, but there are many things in society, such as tobacco, that contains harmful toxins, yet it’s still legal. To say that marijuana should remain illegal because it is addictive, is irrelevant because these items are still present in society today and are harmful to the human body, but still they remain legal.
In other arguments, opponents such as the DEA have argued continuously that medical marijuana has no medicinal value. Although NORML has shown that it helps with “pain relief, nausea, spasticity, glaucoma, and movement disorders”. This research has also proven that marijuana helps with HIV/AIDS patients.
HIV is one of the leading causes of deaths, primarily in African Americans. In this disease, patients suffer from loss of appetite and pain as shown in Figure 1. Many patients have complained that pharmaceutical drugs that physicians provide them, does not help them through this disease. Studies have shown that medical marijuana has proven for some patients to have better results than prescription drugs, but opponents have held back millions of patients who are suffering. Some ill patients need medical marijuana, like mal-nourished plants need water to survive. The DEA are taking these rights away from the ill and they continue to live in a horrible state. The DEA are constantly breaking into people’s homes and arresting them for the use of medical marijuana. Innocent people are being charged heavy fines or even jail time just because they wanted to relieve their