Although possessing a medicinal value and therapeutic uses for body ailments such as multiple sclerosis, glaucoma and anxiety, exaggerated marijuana abuse is harmful to the body and legalizing the drug would pose negative effects upon public health and well-being. The main argument of pro-legislators of Marijuana is that of its therapeutic uses. The drug is said to be a source of relief to sufferers of Multiple Sclerosis, and patients argue that smoking a joint before going to bed eases joint pain and allows them to sleep.
Victims of the disease also undergo spasms as a result of nerve damage, and it has been noted that Marijuana helps to control the occurrence of these seizures . Also, marijuana is believed to provide relief to glaucoma patients by reducing ocular pressure which can cause damage to the eye as well as effectively reducing nausea and anxiety. Marijuana? s apparent beneficial qualities go beyond that of the body and are also linked to the mind with its contribution to meditative states.
The drug is believed by its supporters to have the ability to stimulate thought process, whereby its user enters a state of inner enlightenment and thus perceives with a greater depth. In this manner, the drug also supposedly causes its host to develop a philosophical attitude or approach, and sparks creativity among artists and poets. However, the drugs negative aspects cannot be ignored. Regular abuse of Marijuana leads to a loss of short term memory and an individual may have trouble with the handling of complex tasks. With the use of more potent varieties of marijuana, [those higher in THC ?
tetrahydrocannibinol, marijuana? s active ingredient] even simple tasks may prove difficult. Due to the drug’s effects on perceptions and reaction time, it is possible for users to become involved in auto crashes. Dr. Stephen J. Heishman, a research psychologist with the Clinical Pharmacology Branch of NIDA’s Division of Intramural Research echoes this view, stating “Driving and marijuana do not mix; that’s the bottom line. ” He points out, after conducting tests on how marijuana’s effects the functional components of driving, that twenty minutes after smoking the joints ?
marijuana significantly impaired their ability to stand on one leg for 30 seconds or touch their finger to their nose. As the dose of THC increased, the subjects swayed more, raised their arms, and had to put their feet down in an attempt to maintain their balance.? These tests thus show that marijuana retards co-ordination and balance which are ? functional components important to driving.? . With this said, should Marijuana indeed be legalized, the effects will prove harmful to a public well-being.
In addition to increased accidents, there exists the problem that Marijuana may set the precedent for the legalization of other illegal drugs. Also, decriminalization and increase of availability may lead to an increase in abuse, leading to favourable results in academic and educational facilities being significantly reduced. In conclusion, the negative aspects of Marijuana abuse by far outweigh the positive, and should this drug be legalized, it is indeed clear that public safety and well-being as well as the personal health of the individuals consuming the substance will be compromised.