The author of the essay "Is there any Justice: Marijuana as Medicine - the Case for Legalization" begins with that the legalization of marijuana for medicinal purposes is viewed by many as one of the worst things that we could do. There are many reasons that people feel that marijuana should not be legalized for medical uses. Marijuana is an illegal substance and until that is changed; prescribing it is against the law. Dr. Jerome Kassirer wrote that, "Attorney General Janet Reno announced that physicians in any state who prescribe the drug could lose the privilege of writing prescriptions, be excluded from medicare and Medicaid reimbursements, and even be prosecuted for a federal crime". Government officials are not the only ones to object to the legalization of marijuana. Another objection to the legalization of marijuana is shown in "Marijuana for the Sick", where it is pointed out that many parents object to the legalization of marijuana for medical uses. Their objections come from a reasonable concern that there has been an increase in the use of marijuana by teenagers. Their concern is expanded since the marijuana of today is much more potent than the marijuana of a few decades ago. Another concern regarding the legalization of marijuana for medicinal purposes is that there is strong evidence that shows that regular use of marijuana for long periods of time could cause severe lung damage. If the use of marijuana could damage a patient's lungs, then the risk could outweigh the benefit. The strongest point that many make opposing the legalization of marijuana is that there just is no clear evidence that smoking marijuana can help an individual who is ill (Abrams, Child & Mitchell, 2005).
History of Marijuana and its use in medical field
The history of the beneficial use of marijuana is a long one. Marijuana is one of the oldest drugs known to man, the use of which has been documented as far back as 2700 B.C. in a Chinese manuscript (Bakalar & Grinspoon, 2007) Although no actual studies were performed at the time, the simple fact that marijuana had been used for such an extensive period of time, shows that it can be used as a beneficial substance in helping those who are ailing. There has been research done in more recent times on the effectiveness of marijuana. Many reports are in favor of utilizing medical marijuana. In 1839, a respected member of the Royal Academy of Science, Dr. W. B. O'Shaugnessy, was one of the first in the medical profession, who presented positive facts dealing with marijuana and medicine (Bakalar & Grinspoon, 2007). In one Journal of American Medical Association article, "Marijuana as Medicine, a Plea for Reconsideration" stated that from 1840 to 1900, more than one hundred articles by American and European medical journals were published that showed the therapeutic uses of marijuana.
Now recall the first criteria for a drug to be considered a controlled