There is an ongoing debate about the beneficial properties of Marijuana and its effects on the user. However, still mainly considered an illegal substance in most countries, many citizens are beginning to question this prohibition and its effectiveness. It is overly common these days to hear of the continuous efforts put forth to aid the “war on drugs,” be it on the news broadcast or the local newspapers. Yet the debate on the legalization of Marijuana has never really ended, but is often merely overlooked. 1In the United States of America alone, more that 36 states have legalized Marijuana, when it is prescribed by a doctor to a patient affected with harmful side effects of cancer chemotherapy, glaucoma, AIDS and various incurable and debilitating illnesses. So what position should be taken against this so-called “war on drugs”?
A drug is a drug. Whatever some might say about Marijuana, the truth is that it still is a type of drug, which affects both body and mind. Several side effects should be considered worrisome, especially for those who smoke it regularly. Some of the recognizable side effects of marijuana include:
-Trouble with thinking and problem solving
-Loss of motor skills
-Decrease in muscle strength
-Increased heart rate
Nevertheless, some groups pushing the legalization of Marijuana promote its “beneficial” effects, referring to both medical and personal use. 2Some common claims made are: Marijuana will create pacifism and reduce the stress level in our lives, legalizing it will decrease the crime rate and eliminate the need of a black market, marijuana has medicinal values, and that no one ever died from smoking Marijuana. No one ever died from smoking Marijuana. Scientific studies have shown some shocking evidence of the serious health problems a regular Marijuana smoker may encounter: 3″Marijuana contains more than 400 chemicals, including most of the harmful substances found in tobacco smoke. Smoking one marijuana cigarette deposits about four times more tar into the lungs than a filtered tobacco cigarette.” 3″There are also many long-term health consequences of marijuana use. According to the National Institutes of Health, studies show that someone who smokes five joints per week may be taking in as many cancer-causing chemicals as someone who smokes a full pack of cigarettes every day.”
Evidence that Marijuana seriously affects the well functioning of our bodies is simply piling. The argument of its medical “benefits” may come up once more for the terminally ill, yet marijuana still hasn’t been proven to cure anything. Drugs don’t cure! The most they can do is attenuate the symptoms of the illness. The body’s immune system, notably the white blood cells, is responsible for fighting the disease. 3Furthermore, it has been proven by a study conducted by a Columbia University that a control group smoking a single marijuana cigarette every other day for a year had a white-blood-cell count that was 39 percent lower than normal, thus damaging the immune system and making the user far more susceptible to infection and sickness.
Right there, we can clearly realize how Marijuana is not a “harmless” drug. Its immediate effects may be appealing to many, but in the long run, the health problems and illnesses that will result from a regular use of Marijuana outweigh the “appealing” ones.
The results from the increased media coverage and debates on Marijuana legalization have led today’s youths and teenagers to believe that Marijuana is a safe and carefree drug to use. This is particularly alarming for a decrease in their vigilance and awareness of drugs may lead to greater problems. 3In the U.S.A. alone, there is a significant increase in the number of teenagers seeking treatment for a Marijuana addiction. Marijuana reduces their ability to concentrate on their studies, and damages their memory, thus reducing their academic capabilities. The youth and teenagers seem to be fed the wrong type of information, and need to be informed on the “other side of the medal,” specifically how their future projects and ambitions may be rapidly put to a stop due to their use of Marijuana during their prime years.
Overall, Marijuana isn’t the most dangerous drug, but it still has no proven medical evidence of aiding in the cure of illnesses. Therefore, one can’t say that it is beneficial, for it is wrong. One can’t say that it is harmless, for it contains hundreds of cancer-related chemicals. One can’t claim that it will reduce the profits made by the black market, for we can’t predict the effects legalization shall have. So, why is there still a debate on Marijuana? The evidence is crystal clear, the doctors aren’t convinced of its medicinal properties, and most of all, it is a DRUG. The facts are simply mounting everyday: the consumption of Marijuana brings about more harm to one’s health than any benefits it could ever provide. Drugs, particularly excessive use of Marijuana, have this unconditional power to continually diminish mental and physical abilities. Be above the influence, you can make an educated decision and refuse to consume any Marijuana or its by-products.