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Argumentative Essay Example: Marijuana - Medical Solution or Dangerous Drug

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Argumentative essay marijuana

Marijuana or Cannabis Sativa is a plant, which contains more than 500 components and 104 cannabinoids types. This is a hemp that grows in a warm climate. Marijuana is a herbal cannabis used as an illicit drug, and it is also one of the most abused drugs in the world. Marijuana contains the mind-altering chemical delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC); the chemical is abundant in the plant and accounts for the intoxicating properties of the drug. It is important to note that many chemicals, which are present in marijuana such as cannabinol are not psychoactive, but these substances may modify the effects of THC. The drug usually involves leaves and flowers.

Argumentative essay thesis statement:

this paper argues that the problem of crime and punishment for unethical use of marijuana is a problem facing the global population, but one for which an effective and perfect solution does not exist. 

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Arguments FOR

The person engaging in criminal acts is considered a social "enemy" who deserves condemnation and punishment. In many cases, decriminalization allows a state to reduce number of individuals behind the bars and even save what is argued billions in tax revenue. Decriminalization should be applied to arguably light drugs only (e.g. cannabis).

However, the rules and punishment should remain the same for such drugs as cocaine, amphetamine, and LSD among others.  

Decriminalization of cannabis will help the state to control a black market, collect taxes, and free up the police resources and federal courts from minor marijuana-related crimes; it will also protect numerous cancer patients and their doctors from criminal responsibility. The USA is one of the countries where marijuana is used for medical purposes in a number of states. Hence, decriminalization is an important step to reduce number of court cases and protect citizens from unduly harsh criminal responsibility.

On the other hand, other drugs should not be subject to decriminalization. Statistics prove that strict laws and punishments do not reduce number of cannabis users, but become a real burden for police and other law enforcement agencies.  

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The answer lies in the ability of the criminal-justice system to search, convict, and punish the violent criminals. Decriminalization is important because marijuana or cannabis is regulated at the federal level of government by the 1970 Controlled Substances Act. Over-the-counter drugs that can be obtained without a prescription can also be described as "unscheduled" drugs. Medical marijuana should be decriminalized on the state level because it is used for medical purposes and the federal laws and agencies cannot prohibit medical use of marijuana. 

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Conflict between the state and federal laws

The conflict between the state and federal laws discriminate many marijuana users and add additional burden on the state judicial system. Applied to other types of drugs, law enforcement agencies and representatives claim that users of cocaine, amphetamine, and LSD should be discouraged by strict punishment in order to protect the society and population form any related unlawful acts. At the same time, reduced penalties should be applied to medical marijuana users and those individual who buy it for personal use only.

There’s a huge difference between a cocaine abuse and using marijuana to alleviate pain in cancer patient. 

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Marijuana characteristics

Marijuana is a drug, which varies in potency, depending on where the plant is grown. The active chemical, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), is present in the flowering tops of the plant. Cannabinoids present in marijuana dissolves readily in fat. THC is absorbed into the blood, through the pharynx and the lungs. The effects of the chemical are perceptible within 9 seconds with peak effects achieved within several minutes. The uniqueness of these substances is that they possess anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Guidelines from the medical professional are of vital importance for a patient. 

Ways of administering the drug

The main way of administration is oral (inhalation and ingestion). The effects produced may be topical and it is delivered by the gastrointestinal tract route. Usually, regular drug users put marijuana into pipes or use leaves and flowers of marijuana to form cigars or cigarettes (commonly referred to as ‘blunts’). The uniqueness of this herb is that it persists in the brain longer than in the blood, and for this reason the chemical effects last for some time after the level of THC has declined.

THC distributes to the tissues and then acts on specific receptors that react to THC-like chemicals. The main brain effects are altered senses, mood changes, changes in behavior, and impaired body movement. Sometimes, users experience problems breathing, have increased heart rate, hallucinations, and even experience paranoia. 

Medical Marijuana argumentative essay

The drug can be used for medical purposes. In the US, 33 states as well as the Columbia DC, in addition to territories of Guam and Puerto Rico have established inclusive programs that regulate the use of medical marijuana.

  • 13 states passed laws that allow legal use of medical marijuana for medical purposes.
  • The cases in which the use is allowed are limited and strictly regulated by law.
  • Only the use of low THC, high cannabidiol (CBD) is allowed.

The average dose of marijuana is about 10 mg with no tolerance, 20mg with some tolerance, and 50mg with high degree of tolerance. 10mg of marijuana is a dose that can be compared with one beer. This dosage may influence everyone differently and the medical professional is responsible for determining the dosage; it can take time to find the right dosage for different patients. 

In case an individual eats the hemp, it enters the stomach, and then it is absorbed into blood. Active chemicals contained in marijuana are carried to the liver and the rest of the body. 

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Is Marijuana safe to use for patients?

Marijuana is considered safe to use, and there are more benefits than risks for patients suffering from migraines, cancer, and brain tumors. The most common medical effects of the drug are relaxation pain relief. Other reactions involve a feeling of heightened senses, happiness, and laughter. Some negative effects may include paranoia, distrust, panic, and phobias. The main difference between ingestion and smoking is that the stomach absorbs THC at a slower paste than the respiratory system.

When the hemp is ingested, the levels of THC in the human body are lower, but it produces longer effects on the brain and its effects are delayed in 30 minutes. When marijuana is smoked, its effects are apparent in 9 seconds and lasts for a shorter period of time. 


Marijuana is still a Schedule I drug, which is placed alongside heroine and cocaine. Under the provisions of the Controlled Substances Act, marijuana is considered a gateway drug leading individuals to start using other more powerful drugs; marijuana is believed to be a substance with a high probability for leading to addiction. Nevertheless, the medical benefits of marijuana can not be doubted. The Institute of Medicine conducted a study assessing and evaluating the likely therapeutic use for cannabis.

The study confirmed the likely therapeutic effect of cannabinoid drugs, namely THC, to alleviate pain, help patients relieve symptoms of nausea, and improve appetite. At the same time, no universal solution exists as the medical marijuana laws allow for easy abuse of the substance, presenting additional challenges to both the public and lawmakers.