February 18th, 2014 Medical Marijuana Legislation
Every year new types of diseases come about and devastate parts of America. For instance different types of the flu are popping up all the time. Many of these diseases can’t be cured with the medicine we have available now. This calls for advancements in medicine, and a new controversial medicine is hitting America, and this medicine is marijuana. The plant marijuana isn’t like normal medicines due to the fact that it has been illegal in America for a long time now. Is medical marijuana the correct choice for America? A deeper look into medical marijuana has been beneficial to the American health system. Medicine has been a practice for thousands of years, and without advancements in medicine, America would be covered with even more harsh diseases. Medical marijuana is an important topic to look in depth into for the positive medical sources it can bring us. Being illegal so long, marijuana may not have been researched far into for medical purposes but with the movement towards medical marijuana scientists can research deeper into this plant and hopefully find the positive reasons to why it was put on this planet.
As years go by, many states have started to legalize medical marijuana and have even managed to make marijuana recreational just as alcohol is. But with all of these positive fulfillments, medical marijuana has still hit a wall. This wall is the federal government. The main problems involved with medical marijuana are legal issues. Medical marijuana has faced many legal barriers due to the federal government keeping a strict zero-tolerance against all medical marijuana acts. Actually with a warrant a government drug agency such as the DEA can go in to a dispensary and make arrest and take all of the marijuana, even if it is in a medical marijuana state.
In the article “Medical Marijuana and the Political Safeguards of Federalism” by Robert Mikos discusses this battle between federal and state governments. The battle between state and federal governments has been a slow but sure push by states to make marijuana a medical use. The federal ban on marijuana may seem very strong but it really isn’t. Actually since 1996, sixteen states have passed laws for the legalization of medical marijuana, and it now has well over 400,000 who use medical marijuana from a state medical program. Medical marijuana dispensaries at one point even outnumbered Starbucks and McDonalds in Los Angeles County according to Mikos.
The article discusses a point of how medical marijuana is breaking down the “political safeguards” of federalism, which is meaning these over-reaching legislations are testing the boundaries of federal law. The ban on medical marijuana was supposed to be a no exceptions legislation. With the growing popularity of the legislation of medical marijuana with a 70% support rate in a public opinion poll takes a hit at the “political safeguards” of federalism but it would take a lot more than a positive poll to reschedule marijuana anytime soon. This growth in popularity has started moving through the media as Mikos says “The Discovery Channel even hosts a documentary series, Weed Wars, showcasing people who are unabashed about flouting the ban.” The series being aired on a nationwide television network like The Discovery Channel makes the battle for medical marijuana legislation easier on the states side as shows the whole medical marijuana battle with federal law while gaining support from the people. (1004) Another sign of the federal government losing power in the battle with medical marijuana is that the federal government’s- actions have suggested that the federal ban is more of a guideline then a ban. Federal government claims to be a democracy which gives power to the people, yet they are blocking a change in a law that is very favored by the American people. Legalizing medical marijuana would be the right move for our