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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Is Marijuana an Illegal Drug or a Medicine?

Iowa Republican Senator Chuck Grassley
Iowans have been turning to marijuana for their medical ailments despite their Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley's opinion. Grassley, who recently is working to prohibit all discussion regarding medical marijuana in a bill to amend drug policy. However, the citizens of Iowa have a different opinion and many are pulling to have medical marijuana legalized. According to the Iowa AP, "opponents claim marijuana is already the state's most abused drug and the problem will only worsen if it's allowed for medical use". A lot of people still hold on to and are not willing to let go of the idea that marijuana is the gateway drug that leads to the abuse of all other drugs. However, that idea has come under serious debate in the last few years and doctors are professing the medical benefits of marijuana; alcohol is generally considered more damaging then marijuana these days.

"The Iowa Board of Pharmacy has held four hearings in recent months to seek scientific evidence and testimony on the topic. That review could lead to a recommendation to state lawmakers whether to change Iowa laws", stated the Iowa AP. More people in Iowa are speaking out for legalization than there are against it; very few people have expressed their opposition which is kind of surprising to many people. Thirteen states are now allowing the use of medical marijuana, very few states have set up dispensaries as of this point but more are expected to pop up in the near future.

The fact still remains that marijuana is addictive and affects the brain and lungs in a negative way. Will legalizing medical marijuana send out the wrong message to young people? Medical marijuana use could very possibly spike addiction rates in the coming months and that data will give people a better idea of the societal effects of medical marijuana. Before any kind of decision in Iowa is made, Dr. Ron Herman the director of the University of Iowa's Drug Information Network said, more research is needed.

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