Essay on Marijuana: the Good Part

1505 Words May 11th, 2002 7 Pages
Marijuana is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known. No one has ever died from an overdose, and it has a wide variety of therapeutic applications: Relief from nausea and increase of appetite; Reduction of eye pressure; Reduction of muscle spasms; Relief from mild to moderate chronic pain.
Marijuana is frequently beneficial in the treatment of the following conditions: AIDS. Marijuana can reduce the nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite caused by the ailment itself and by treatment with AZT and other drugs. Glaucoma. Marijuana can reduce eye pressure, thereby alleviating the pain and slowing -- and sometimes stopping -- the progress of the condition. (Glaucoma is the leading
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2.Many people who used marijuana recreationally were also suffering from diseases for which marijuana is beneficial. By fluke, they discovered its therapeutic usefulness.
As the word spread, more and more patients started self-medicating with marijuana. However, because of marijuana's Schedule I status, doctors cannot prescribe it, and research approval and funding are severely curtailed.
In 1972, a petition was submitted to the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs -- now the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) -- to reschedule marijuana to make it available by prescription. After 16 years of court battles, the DEA's chief administrative law judge, Francis L. Young, ruled: "Marijuana, in its natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known. The provisions of the [Controlled Substances] Act permit and require the transfer of marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule II. It would be unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious for DEA to continue to stand between those sufferers and the benefits of this substance(32)."
Marijuana's placement in Schedule II would enable doctors to prescribe it to their patients. But top DEA bureaucrats rejected Judge Young's ruling and refused to reschedule marijuana. Two appeals later, petitioners experienced their first defeat in the 22-year-old lawsuit. On February 18, 1994, the U.S. Court of Appeals (D.C. Circuit)

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