Legalization of Marijuana
During the Carter, Reagan, and Bush administrations, eight people in the United States were allowed to use marijuana for medicinal purposes under the Compassionate Investigative New Drug program. However, since the Clinton administration no new applications have been accepted. Therefore, other patients who need marijuana to alleviate the nausea and loss of appetite associated with the AIDS viruses and cancer chemotherapy, as well as to treat glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, chronic pain, and other ailments must continue to suffer without the use of marijuana. Is this fair?
What could the reasoning behind this needless suffering possibly be? I thought that one of the purposes of government was to promote the well-being of its individuals. Is that not why our country spends billions of dollars towards advancements in medicine every year?
So, why aren’t there any FDA approved studies testing the actual effectiveness of marijuana in progress? If it is proved that marijuana does indeed help ease the pain and suffering of these poor people, then why not allow it to be prescribed to help them. It is illegal to consume any prescription drug not prescribed to you. Which makes all prescription drugs illegal, how is this different from marijuana? Sure it may be addicting, but so can caffeine pills. Sure it may be harmful if someone misuses it, but so can Ritalin. I just do not understand how prescribing a drug to help someone could be harmful.
The least the government could do is research the subject a little more. Instead, they seem to be doing the opposite. In 1994, The Assistant Secretary for Health postponed the final meeting that would have decided whether the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services would require government-grown marijuana to be used in the first medicinal marijuana research project in over a decade. The government seems to have no problems arresting sick people for using marijuana, telling them that there has not been enough research to verify its medical benefits. However, they are doing nothing to assist in the studies.
A small non-profit organization called MAPS has been working for two years to raise money, develop study protocols, and obtaining the Food and Drug Administrations approval for the study of marijuana. Only one thing holds them back. They have no legal way of obtaining marijuana, and the government will not give it to them.
If a medical missionary in the Rain Forest proclaimed that she had found a new miracle drug to help ease the pain of many sufferers, you can guarantee that a government approved study would be launched almost instantaneously. How is that any different than marijuana?
Why is Clinton so anti-marijuana? "The Clinton administration is apparently so afraid of being associated with the 'M' word that they are even willing to block research that could prolong AIDS patients' lives," stated a spokesperson for the MAPS organization. A poll showed that a whopping total of 65.5% of California’s registered voters support the legalization of marijuana for medicinal purposes. Not only do the citizens support the research, but many Congressmen support it also.
“I continue to believe that those who can benefit from the medical use of marijuana should be able to get the drug when prescribed,” said U.S. Representative Gary
“I share your support for the medical use of government-supplied marijuana and understand the potential to ease the side effects of many diseases and illnesses, including AIDS,” said U.S. Senator John Glenn.
So, if the Senators, Representatives, and the Citizens are all in support of medicinal marijuana research, why is nothing being done?
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