Marijuana
Marijuana originated in the middle east (Taiwan, Korea). China plays
an important part in Marijuana's history. Hoatho, the first chinese
physician to use Cannabis for medical purposes as a painkiller and
anesthetic for surgery. In the Ninth Century B.C., it was used as an
incense by the Assyrians Herbal, a Chinese book of medicine from the second
Century B.C., was first to describe it in print. It was used as an
anesthetic 5,000 years ago in ancient china. Many (*) ancient cultures
such as the persians, Greeks, East Indians, Romans, and the Assyrians for
many things. These were what they used it for: the control of muscle
spasms, reduction of pain, and for indegestion. Imagine that if they still
practiced this, instead of taking an Alka Seltzer after you had mom's Chili
or Tacos, you might be sitting in the living room on the LAY-Z Boy, smoking
a joint or however they would take it. The folk medicine of Africa and Asia
have used it as an herbal preparation. A mythical and legendary
pharmacist and emperor Shen Nung thought using it as a seditive was all
right. In 2,700 B.C. that same mythical emperor said it helped female
weakness, gout, rheumatism, malaria, beri-beri (?), contipation, and
absentmindedness.

In 1979 (A.D.) Carlton E. Turner visited China and found marijuana was
not in use in formal medical places. J. D. P. Graham of the Welsh National
School of Medicine wrote, One not need take to seriously the anecdotal use
of it's use for many purposes in China or by the Hindus in the
pre-Christian Millennia ...and by the Arabs! In 1890 in England's Lancet
said cannabis extract was good for neuralgia, fits, migraine and
psychosomatic disorders but not for rheumatic conditions. It is not easy
to tell the dosage because of the variations in potency and the
irregularity in absorbtion. The time delay before the onset of the
possible effects of marijuana lowered it's popularity as a medicine as did
the introduction of a variety of new and better medicines like aspirin,
morpheine (habit forming), chloral, barbituates tranquilizers, and when it
got on the list of drugs thought by the world community to require legal
restrictions.

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Our first President, George Washington, grew cannabis on his
plantation. The cannabis he grew was more fibrous and is better known as
hemp. Hemp was used to make rope, twine, paper and canvas (the word
canvas comes from Cannabis) and was an important crop in the american
colonies. In Jamestown, Virginia it was grown for it's fiber qualities in
1611. (Snyder, 1985) The U.S. Pharmacopeia had it listed as a useful
medicine from the year 1870 to 1941. A Pharmacopeia is a book of
directions and requirements for the preparations of medicines, generally
published by an authority; a collection or stock of drugs. This tells us
the U.S. Pharmacopeia was an authority on the use of drugs for medical
purposes, and said that the use of marijuana for said purposes was helpful.

The U.S. Pharmacopeia last listed cannabis (the dried flower tops of the
pistillate plants of cannabis sativa) in 1936.(Lovinge,1985,p434) That
years epitome of the pharmacopeia and the national formula described the
drug for physicians thus:a narcotic poison, producing a mild delirium.

Used in sedative mixtures but of doubtful value. Also employed to color
corn remedies. The next pharmacopeia released in 1942 (I gather they were
relaesed every six years) did not have cannabis sativa in it. The 1937
U.S. dispensatory said:Cannabis is used in medicine to relieve pain,
encourage sleep, and to soothe restlessness. We have very little definite
knowledge of the effects of therapeutic quantities, but in some persons it
appears to produce a euphoria and will often relieve migrainic headaches.

One of the great hindrances to the wider use of this drug is the great
variability and the potency of different samples of Cannabis which renders
it impossible to approximate the proper dose of any individual smaple
except by clinical trial. Because of occasional unpleasant symptoms from
unusually potent preparations, physicians have generally been overcaustious
in the quantities administered. The only way of determining the dose of an
individual preparation is to give it in ascending quantities until some
effect is produced. (The Book suggested using a fluid extract - powdered
cannabis in solution, 4/5 alcohol - three times a day, starting with two
or three minims.)(Lovinge,1985,p434)
Extracts, tinctures, and herbal packages of cannabis manufactured by
many drug companies, was available in any pharmacy until 1941 when The two
main professional directories of drugs in the United States dropped
it.(Snnyder 1985,p38) It is still used as a medicine in the Middle East and
Asia, and is completely legal in Amsterdam. Since the 19th Century, it has
been recognized as as intoxicant in Europe, and an intoxicant for many
centuries in Central and South America, and in Asia. An 1870 Book called
The Hasheesh Eater by Fitz Hugh Hudlow, discussed the intoxicating
properties of marijuana.(Snyder,1985,p39) Mexican farm workers emigrating
to the United States smoked marijuana regularly, and the surrounding
population... quickly followed.

California and Utah were the first to call it a narcotic and outlawed
it completely except for mecial purposes. From 1914 to 1931, 29 States, 17
of them West of the Mississippi made it a criminal offense to possess or
use it.(Snyder,1985,p40) An army report from 1925 concerning the Panama
Canal Zone said it wasnt habit forming and no steps should be taken to keep
it from being sold or used. The Uniform States Narcotic Act said all
states should control drug distribution. By 1937 marijuana use was
restricted by law (Snyder,1985,p42) and the Marijuana Tax Act was signed
by President Roosevelt. This act was made to collect more taxes and locate
people selling marijuana. You had to pay $1 for medical use and $100 for
recreational use as tax. This was a large factor why doctors quit using it
as a medicine. The Narcotics Drug Control Act of 1965 increased the
existing penalties for selling and distribution of marijuana and heroin...

(Snyder,1985,p46) The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana
Laws (NORML) was founded in 1970.

Just the facts Ma'am: It is illegal to own or sell marijuana. It is a
misdemeanor not a felony. Penalties vary widely in each state, for
growing and selling it is almost always a felony. It can cause cancer in
the lungs and the throat IF smoked. Among the reasons to suspect
potentially injurious effect of cannabis use on the lungs, pointed out it
the almost ubiquitous occurrennce of throat discomfort and irritation
associated with marihuana smoking (Lovinge,1985,p15)but the same
carinogens are present in tobacco smoke. Marijuana takes away the
discomfort and nausea associated with chemotherapy taken to stop the
growth of cancer. It also helps people with glaucoma and it keeps them
from going blind. It doesn't lessen feelings and pain, it heightens them.

Users say they hear things better, and they see details they have never
seen before. If made legal, it could be regulated by the U.S. government
(Food and Drug Administration?) as to how potent it would be. Or there
could be a government monopoly on it controlling the cultivation,
importation, manufacture, wholesale distribution, and retail sales.

Controls could also be placed on the quantity, potency,, amount, price,
time and place of sale, and age of buyers. This would do away with black
market activity, cost of law enforcement and tax
revenue.(Snyder,1985,p89) It would also keep alot of people out of
jail/prison and save the government money.

Interview with a marijuana user.

Q: Do you think Marijuana has had any long lasting effects on you?
A: None besides the effects regular cigarrette smoke does to your lungs.

Scientific facts prove there are none except the carcinogens produced by
the smoke. It doesn't cause brain damage like your teachers tell you.

Q: How do you take it?
A: Smoke it. I use pipes, bongs, ; papers.

Q: How often? A: Quarter ounce a week, 15-18 joints a month.

Q: How much does it cost? A: $200 an ounce, $2,500 lb...and thats minimum quality.

Q: How can you tell quality?
A: Smoke it.

Q: How are Thai Sticks?
A: Better than average. $65 1/4 ounce
Q: Where do you think most marijuana is grown?
A: 80% of all (in US) marijuana is grown in the US. 20% from Mexico ;
Jamaica In Alaska ; Utahyou can have up to an ouce legally. The
biggest growinng states are the Carolinas, ; Texas. It grows wild
in some places. And cows wont eat it.

Q: Do you grow any?
A: Yes
Q: How many at 1 time (the most)?
A: 12...check them once a week.

Q: Are you in NORML?
A: Yes, South Florida chapter. I'm the secretary.

Q: Whats the highest price you've ever seen?
A: $150 1/4 ounce.

Q: Is sinsimilia good?
A: Yes $100-125 ounce. thats usually imported.

Q: can you use a plant more than once?
A: no. you kill the male plants as soon as you find their sex,
and harvest the females.

Q: What kind do you grow?
A: Average weed.

Q: How do you get the seeds or what you need to grow them?
A: They are in the stuff I buy.

Q: Whats the best kind?
A: Depends on how it's grown.

Q: Do you think alot of people smoke weed?
A: If it was legal & sold for the same price as tobacco (since when
does tobacco cost $200 an ounce?!?!) it would make 2.1
BILLION! Tobacco makes 3.1 billion, and alcohol make 1.6 billion.

(I have NO idea how much 1 ounce of tobacco costs, but it can't
be more than $10. Marijuana sells for 20 times that much! That
would be OVER 40 BILLION!)
Q: Would it be better if legalized?
A: Yes, another taxable income for the government. Prices would go down.

The crime factor would be gone. It would take the money out of the
hands of criminal and put it in the hands of the government. It's not
addictive, you can't overdose unlike alcohol, but the smoke does cause
cancer.

Q: Would less people use it if legalized?
A: no.

Q: How much is caught by the government?
A: 2% of total in U.S. Basically thats the government admittinng
that they are losing the war on drugs.

Q: How does it smell?
A: Usually good, sometimes bitter. a sweet smell.

Q: THC makes you high right? A: yes, they have found it
causes no long lasting effects. Water Pipes/bongs remove 80% of the
smoke
Q: Do you eat it?
A: No, eating uses up more. That way isn't cost effective.

(end of interview)
Marijuana doesn't cause brain damage. The smoke does cause cancer, but
so does tobacco. The smoke can be reduced by up to 80% with special
paraphenalia. We used to have limited knowledge on the subject, now our
knowledge is increasing. Marijuana doesn't lead to sexual promiscuity all
the time, but a
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