Controversies Surrounding Cannabis
The’re many controversies surrounding the use of cannabis. One of those is based on the fact that weed is a drug that causes addiction. Many folks use it to get stimulated to respond to pleasures such as sex, food and entertainment. Medical experts warn that the plant alters the mind making the user hyperactive, elusive, and addicted. This can lead the mind to commit crimes like murder and irresponsible behavior. Besides that, it's harmful to the body.
When weed is consumed, the main ingredient THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) spreads in the bloodstream within seconds. This brings about a high feeling to the user, and it may take up to four hours to wear off. The thinking and reasoning get distorted by heightening the senses resulting in impaired judgment. Medics have warned that weed use also heightens or decreases anxiety, causes memory loss, bronchitis, red eyes, weakened immune system and increased pulse rate. Another adverse effect is the inability to make a proper judgment.
Despite this negativity, cannabis is known for its medicinal value. Sometimes conventional medicines fail to relieve patients' chronic pain due to diseases like cancer and severe injury. Cannabis extracts have been shown to aid in reducing extreme pain. The active compound, THC, is an ingredient for a legal medication known as Marinol, which is used to treat and control nausea and vomiting in cancer chemotherapy patients. It is usually an alternative when other drugs fail to control vomiting. The same is used to control weight loss in HIV patients by improving their appetites.
Cannabis is a science beyond controversy, pushing several states on the crossroad as to whether they want to legalize its production and consumption. Organizations in many countries are coming out publicly to support Marijuana law reforms. For example, DPA (Drug Policy Alliance) advocates for removing weed from the criminal justice structures. The organization believes that the state and federal levels should legalize weed to protect patients' rights to access medicine efficiently.
DPA says that the use of weed alleviates pain and suffering without causing debilitating side effects and contraindications. Diseases such as cancer, glaucoma, and AIDs inflict the body with severe pain, which can be relieved using extracts from this magic plant. In the United States, advanced research is going on to unravel the plant's medicinal value.
That is not all. Countries such as Uruguay, Netherlands, Israel, Canada, The Czech Republic and Spain are now leading cannabis researchers in the world. It's no doubt that weed is going to become the world's most sought-after herb. The dark cloud of controversy surrounding the production and consumption of cannabis is becoming clearer, especially because its support is becoming a global affair.
States Where Cannabis Is Legal
As countries worldwide drag their feet on the legalization of cannabis, some have not hesitated to take the bold step. Quite several countries have legalized cannabis production and use. In 2013, Uruguay was the world's marijuana legalization pioneer. Since the passing of the law, the Uruguay government has supported businesses to grow marijuana for medicinal use. Businesses are thriving because of higher profit margins and more export potential.
Locally, the drug is used as a pharmaceutical ingredient in medicines that relieve chronic pain, nausea and vomiting, among other conditions. The country has put strict structures to control cannabis. Locals can buy snacks and smoking papers; however, they must prove they are registered to buy. Each licensed pharmacy has a thump print reader to scrutinize the buyers. Queues are often witnessed outside drug stores, an indication that supply and demand are not proportional. The demand for cannabis exceeds supply.
The international market demand is above supply prompting the country to encourage businesses to venture into large-scale farming of the crop and exploit the ready global market.
Uruguay's challenge is that even if the country is sovereign, it is still affected by the United States' strict finance laws on restricted substances. Lenders who rely on United States partnerships to do international transactions are under threat. U.S banks do not want to do business with countries involved in cannabis money.
The United States has also embraced the legalization of Marijuana. The U.S federal law under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) of 1970 regulates the use and possession of cannabis. The Act prohibits it regardless of its purpose. On the other hand, the state has legalized cannabis use both for medicinal. Many states are now allowing cannabis use for recreational purposes. Several states have gone ahead to vote for marijuana.
Some of the states where marijuana is legal in the U.S for use on both medical and recreation are:
California (possession of up to 1 ounce)
Arizona (possession of up to 1 ounce)
Oregon (possession of up to 1 ounce by adults over 21 years of age)
The following states restrict the use of marijuana for medical use:
Outside the U.S, the Federal District of Columbia has legalized the commercial sale of cannabis and carrying up to 2 ounces. Inhabited territories such as Guam Northern Mariana Islands have completely legalized cannabis use.
It is illegal to be found in possession of marijuana in the following states. Besides, marijuana possession may attract up to 5 years in prison:
The Democratic-led House plans to vote for the federal government of the U.S to legalize the use of marijuana without decriminalization. Once the MORE Act is implemented, the product will be removed from the list of controlled substances in the United States. However, it will depend on the Republicans, who are now the majority, to decide to pass the bill or not.
In American Samoa, it is illegal to possess the drug, and it attracts a 5 years mandatory sentence.
Canada is also in the list of states where marijuana is legal. Its Cannabis Act is the law behind the control of production and consumption of marijuana. The law was passed in 2018, making it legal to possess and use Marijuana. The federal government is in charge of licensing growers. The producers determine how its distribution and sale without any restriction. The only threat is that the federal government will sign off if it is heavily advertised.
Jamaica, the world's marijuana icon, legalized marijuana recently in 2015, becoming one of the states where marijuana is legal. Contrary to people's perception that the product was legal, the existing law before 2015 decriminalized possession and use of marijuana for personal use. It was only allowed for medicinal purposes. Peter Tosh, a famous reggae star, pleaded with the government to fully legalize marijuana. After 40 years, his wish was fulfilled when the state amended the existing law to legalize marijuana fully. Jamaicans celebrated the new law, which treats possession of 56.6 grams of marijuana as a petty offence that does not attract any criminal record.
Rastafarian adults are permitted to use the drug for religious purposes making Jamaica set the world record as the only country that has legalized marijuana f religion. Citizens can cultivate up to five plants per household for recreational use.
The’re legal dispensaries dispensing marijuana to sick travelers and those who have a valid doctors' prescription. The country's Cannabis licensing authority intends to transform the marijuana black market into a legal industry to promote trade. This will help the marginalized community to increase their earning potential and minimize drug-related crimes.
The African States Where Weed Is Legal