Marijuana as a Social Problem Essay

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Pages: 5

Marijuana as a Social Problem
Marijuana is a green, brown, or gray mixture of dried, shredded leaves, stems, seeds, and flowers of the hemp plant. You may hear marijuana called by street names such as pot, herb, weed, grass, boom, Mary Jane, gangster, or chronic. There are more than 200 slang terms for marijuana. All forms of marijuana are mind-altering. In other words, they change how the brain works. They all contain THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol), the main active chemical in marijuana. They also contain more than 400 other chemicals. Marijuana's effects on the user depend on the strength or potency of the THC it contains. The potency of marijuana has increased since the 1970s but has been about the same since the
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Marijuana was prescribed for various pain-relieving and mood-altering conditions such as nausea, labor pains, and rheumatism. A score of medical papers were published in this era flaunting the curing abilities of cannabis, and even the personal physician of Queen Victoria, Sir John Russell Reynolds, announced cannabis as having amazing powers to treat painful maladies. It was sold openly and was easily available in public pharmacies. However, during this time, marijuana was also starting to be used more often as an intoxicant. The recreational use of marijuana started on a small scale in the late 19th century in the northeastern United States with the opening of many Turkish smoking parlors. It was also during this time that about two to five percent of America’s population had unknowingly become addicted to morphine as most over-the-counter medicines contained levels of the substance. Among the addicts were soldiers, businessmen, housewives, and children. In response, the American government passed the Pure Food and Drug Act in 1906 and formed the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in part to help counter and control the addiction situation. The law, though not targeting marijuana specifically, also required cannabis -based medications to have its contents mentioned on the label. T The Spanish-American War, and the subsequent Mexican revolution of 1910, also influenced the marijuana scene in America. During the