Friday, March 16, 2007

Legalizing Marijuana


Should medical use of marijuana be legalized by the federal government? What political implications does this debate have? What economic factors might have an influence on the federal court system?

How did the fact sheets help you discuss the article from the NY Times better?

10 comments:

Superfly said...

So, the fact sheets on the legalization of marijuana that we were given today were... umm... interesting? The pro and con contradicted each other and the con (I didn't see the pro so I can't talk about that) didn't seem to be very fond of listing proper sources. However, while the lists were very nice (lots of words, almost everything you'd want in a fact sheet) they didn't seem to be relevant at all to our topic except for the two or three bullets that addressed cancer. The con sheet spoke about an increased risk of cancer from smokin' the gancha (we wouldn't want the terminal cancer patients getting any MORE cancer) and the pro sheet (from what I heard) listed that it decreased the size of tumors as well as giving people on chemo therapy back their appetites and reducing pain. So, let's contemplate this: we can't legalize medical marijuana for cancer patients who need it (like Angel McClary Raich from today's times article) to live, essentially, because Marijuana is a "gateway" drug (we don't want grandma thinking she should start on the crack-pipe now) and because my 76 year old grandmother might start selling it on the street.
While this is all terribly logical on the part of our government (more good work from them over in the white house, I think that it's just making it all the more dangerous for the people who need marijuana to handle their cancers and a waste of time. Here we all are, spending so much time discussing how perfectly awful it would be for everyone to give my grandpa a joint so he can eat and I don't have to sit at his bedside while he dies thinking I'm a lemon or a watermelon because he's hallucinating from all the morphine they've pumped into him. We could be talking about something that means something instead of allowing the government to divert our attention talking about things that should be fundamental. As with saying "Vagina" in schools and censorship, I think it's amazing that we're still having this conversation. Give they dying woman her blunt, uncensor high schoolers in public forums. Why are we allowing the government to desecrate our freedoms?
Fight the man.
You know what they say about rights and freedoms? Don't use them, ignore them, and they'll go away.

Josh said...

Wow I'm the first one to post lol. Anyway, I found today's discussion to be pretty educating. So many people have misconceptions about marijuana, but after being educated about the it, I think a lot of us may have a different perception of it as far as for medicinal purposes. According to my pro fact sheet, marijuana can be a very helpful drug to relieve pain for people who suffer from diseases that can not be further treated. Stephanie and Ms. Grant's both had family memebers who were on their death bed's suffering from excrutiating pain and never even got to say their last words. If medicinal marijuana was legal, perhaps they would have been able to function better and had a much more pleasant and relaxing last couple of days. According to the article, marijuana can help AIDS victims develop and appetite, cancer patients not feel so much pain from tumors either milignant or benign, and glacoma patients as well. I feel that Sam made some valid points today in class as well. The government probably does not want to legalize marijuana because they make billions of dollars off of prescription drugs that people become addicted to as well and continue to purchase even after their illnesses are made better. Thanks Sam for your insight by the way. I think that medicinal marijuana can only be legalized if like Mr. Brown said, doctors and scientist come forward and provide even more evidence and study that medicinal marijuana is not harmful to a patients well being and can actually help to solve a lot of problems that patients suffer from today. I also found that after reading today's article, marijuana is far less potent than some of the prescription drugs that doctors prescribe everyday. It is also far less adictive and their has not been a person documented that has died of a marijuana overdose. the only negative thing that I can see coming out of legalizing medicinal marijuana would be people fighting to legalize other far more potent and highly addictive drugs such as heroine and cocaine.

vishnell said...

Honestly today’s class really opened up new eyes for me. I never really knew just what marijuana does that it is suppose to be good for medical purposes. The stories Mr. Brown had Samantha and Joanna read out loud both talked about marijuana use. One talked about the bad results that came about with taking it and the other with the good. The story about it being good stood out more.

The story was about a women talking about her mother being sick and how hard it was for her. At first nobody thought they could do anything to help her and everybody was just forced to prepare for her death. It was hard to communicate with her and she was weak. With taking the marijuana it brought life into her. Life that her children wanted and needed to see before their mother left them. People in class shared stories about how before someone they loved passed away were unable to talk to them and their last days before death were hard. Marijuana is giving the patients that need it a bit of hope and happiness that might help them and their loved ones before they pass away.

Mr. Brown gave us out pros and con’s stating if or if not marijuana should be legalized for medical purposes. There was no point to give out the cons because everyone agreed that if a patient needs it and their dieing why shouldn’t they be allowed to have it? If Marijuana is changing these people that have been weak, upset, and not able to talk to their loved ones then it is more the reason to legalize it. The fact sheets that were given out just made me realize how much sense all the pros made and the cons didn’t. There were some good point in the cons but not related to why it would be bad to use for medical purposes.

If Marijuana is less toxic than many of the drugs that physicians prescribe every day then why shouldn’t it be legalized? Smoking marijuana is more effective then other prescription drugs given to patients. A drug that helps many people relieve the pain and suffering is a drug that should be legalized.

W Brown said...

Life would be better if we did not have to take any drugs, and no one had cancer. Legalization of Medicinal Marijuana seems obvious from the heart wrenching stories we listened to in class both from teh personal expereince of Rita, Grantz, and Sam.

Thank You everyone for sharing.

nyshee.... said...

Mr. Brown gave out copys of the pros and con’s stating if or if not marijuana should be legalized for medical purposes. for the most part i had the cons beacuse there were like arugements back and forth on the pros and cons and i think the pro's won.... but when my grandma was sick, she wasnt eating or anything she didnt even want to take the pain meds because it didnt help her to get any better she just lied ther on her bed getting skinnner every day and wasnt a pretty sight to see.. now if they had gave {doctors}marijunana i think they she wouldnt have died so soon...

Carolina Barberii said...

At first when I was given the con sheet for legalizing medical marijuana I was relieved, I figured it would be easy to defend my side since marijuana is looked down upon in our society. While reading my fact sheet I learned about all of the short-term side effects such as memory loss, anxiety and paranoia. It made me think why the woman discussed in this article would want to spend her last precious moments with family and friends under all of these conditions. I also learned about the long-term side effects and what stuck out to me the most was that marijuana increases your chances of getting cancer. At this point I figured I’d read enough and felt that medical marijuana should not be legalized but once we read the article and the discussion began I changed my mind. I began to feel very sympathetic towards Angel McClary and it was clear that legalizing marijuana could truly help other cancer patients like her. Some of the pros that helped shift my opinion were that marijuana increases appetite in patients undergoing chemotherapy. It also helps put the patients at ease and has been said to decrease tumor growth. During our discussion in class other very valid points were made as well. Mr. Brown mentioned that whether marijuana is legalized or not this woman would find way to get her hands on the drug. But wouldn’t it be easier if it were legalized for medical purposes? McClary and others wouldn’t have to resort to the local drug dealer who laces the substance with who knows what. It would simply be a lot safer and easier if patients in need had access to medical marijuana. In Josh’s comment he stated “The government probably does not want to legalize marijuana because they make billions of dollars off of prescription drugs that people become addicted to as well and continue to purchase even after their illnesses are made better.” I couldn’t agree more, I’ve been skeptical about trusting prescription drugs for a while, it seems like rather than making you feel better they make you worse. Chemotherapy and other treatments probably have side effects that are ten times worse so what’s so wrong about medical marijuana? There are many economic factors that probably come into play; marijuana is cheap, easily accessible and not addicting. This means that the demand for marijuana would be far greater than the demand of other prescription drugs which are much more expensive.

Though legalizing medial marijuana would be beneficial to many people facing life threatening diseases I doubt it will be made legal any time soon. Our society is already set to despise any drugs, which aren’t fed to us by the FDA and using marijuana for medicinal purposes will seem bizarre and strongly affect our economy. I hope that some day it is legalized but for now those patients will have to find other ways to get marijuana.

stephanie said...

I feel that the medical use of marijuana should not be legal. I feel that if it were to become legal that there would be illegal sell of the drug and it will just get out of hand. If someone is on their deathbed and that is the ONLY drug that would make them feel better than it should be legal other than that it should be illegal. I remember when my great aunt was on her deathbed and she didn’t have anything left to her than she could have been given the medical marijuana…TO BE CONTINUED

Anonymous said...

During class I was given one of the sheets that had me on the con side of the argument. It was hard for me to do because I personally thought legalizing Marijuana for people who are sick and are dying is not a bad thing to do. I thought the con sheet made no sense in alot of its points why not to give it to the terminally ill patients. If they are already dying why should they be worrying about getting cancer in 30 years if they already have cancer with no hope of it going into remission. I read both stories about how it helped relieve the pain and made the families last memories of them something a little more soothing then watching them go in a breathing tube and possibly to painful to breathe.
Michelle Asciote

bulka said...

http://questionthemark.org/2006/12/22/25-reasons-to-smoke-marijuana.aspx

C. Mullen said...

Am really starting to feel like the government has it out for us. Everything that could possible help us they take away. I just can’t understand why anyone in his or her right mind wouldn’t want to help anybody in dying pain. Come on this woman was well in her seventies, which mean she has paid her taxes all these years.
Putting her hard-earned dollars into the government she thought would give back to her in the time of need. But no they want to make it where you have to do something illegal just to get the pain relief that you want to maintain a normal day. For the few days you have left and after reading this article it just gave me more reason to believe that marijuana is less harmful than the drugs the doctors are prescribing I just cant understand what is so harmful about something that you cant even overdose from. If you take the time out to ask anybody that’s ever tried it before.
They will tell you the most that will happen is you will eat and go to sleep. Which is what a lot of our sick patient’s need. I really feel people don’t except marijuana for the simple fact that you have to either roll it up, or put it in something to smoke out of and it has a smell. I really believe if you could put it into a pill. People would feel different about it. I just wanted to say am totally for it being legalized. That sheet didn’t have enough cons to win me over sorry. I just cant disagree with something that you cant overdose on, something that can decrease the size of a tumor and something that helps AIDS patients develop an appetite that a lot over them suffer from not having,. Sorry you don’t have my vote against it