On Legislation of Marijuana Merits and Demerits Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Marijuana Legalization and Public Health

Issues associated with the Public Health Implications of Marijuana Legalization

The legalization of marijuana use in various states in the U.S. has contributed to a surge in of a public health problem associated with marijuana use. A significant increase in the use over the past two decades points to an estimated quarter of the American population that has used the drug. Marijuana use amongst senior high school students has surpassed cigarette-smoking cases. Consequences of marijuana use emanate from a comprehensive and scientific research by the World Health Organization (WHO) and other health organizations on this subject (Department of Health and Human Services, 1982).

Findings on the health hazards caused by marijuana use include interference of mental functioning by marijuana due to the acute intoxication of the drug. The use has curtailed coordination of tasks, a skilled performance of activities such as driving, and complex tasks that involve critical judgment. Addiction and dependence on the drug lead to chronic effects on the users.

Chronic effects of marijuana use include the following;

Decreased sperm motility and count.

The slowness of learning and short-term memory. Studies have associated continuous marijuana use amongst adolescents with a drop in IQ: about an 8-point drops later in their lives.

Impaired immune response resulting in vulnerabilities to respiratory illnesses

Interference of pre-natal development and ovulation.

The drug also results in the "amotivational syndrome" that depicts adverse behavioral and psychological effects, especially in children and adolescents. Characteristics of the syndrome include harmed parental relationships, diminished school performance, and other behavioral interruptions. Research indicates that about 40% of heavy users of the drug experience some or all the identified side effects of marijuana use. Economically, marijuana use strains the country's health care system posing a significant danger to the health and safety of marijuana users, families, and communities. Marijuana use causes various biological and psychological effects that occur as harmful to human health (CDC, 2013).

The increased availability of marijuana through the legalization avenues in various states attunes a surge in health and safety costs. Legalization of the drug outpaces the use of illegal drugs with the widespread of marijuana similar to tobacco and alcohol. Increased consumption of marijuana emanates from the acceptability of the drug. Higher public health and financial costs emanate from increase marijuana use. Today, alcohol addiction costs the public 15 times more the revenue collected from the taxation of alcohol.…

Sources Used in Document:


Basharat, P., Sussman, G., Beezhold, D. & Leader N. (2011). Hypersensitivity Reactions To Marijuana. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2011 Feb; 127(2)(Suppl. 1): AB178. From http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaci.2010.12.707

CDC. (2013). Notes from the Field: Severe Illness Associated with Reported Use of Synthetic Marijuana -- Colorado, August -- September 2013. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6249a7.htm?s_cid=mm6249a7_w

Department of Health and Human Services (13 August 1982). "The Surgeon General's Warning on Marijuana." MMWR Weekly, 31(31);428-9. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00001143.htm

Frizell, S. (2014). Obama on Marijuana Legalization: 'It's Important for It to Go Forward. Time. Retrieved from http://swampland.time.com/2014/01/19/obama-on-marijuana-legalization-its-important-for-it-to-go-forward/#ixzz2qzPk6zX1

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