The drug that has many names (weed, cannabis, marijuana, pot) is once again in the headlines of the Australian news, with the government passing a bill in order to amend the act on illegal drugs in relation to cannabis. Australia has been umming and ahhing about whether or not to legalize marijuana for medical purposes, which is illegal because of its highly addictive nature.
For 150 years early governments were handing out grants and gifts of land to anyone who would grow the seed on their property. Many Australians took the drug for self-improvement, many writers believing it gave them a better edge and some also used it for medicinal purposes (which were widely known by the community and the government). The substance was made illegal after the 1925 Geneva Convention on Opium and other drugs, where the Australian Government was a signatory. This is where marijuana was placed in the same category as heroin, morphine and cocaine.
If you have ever met someone who smokes weed (or do yourself!) you’ll notice some things about them. First of all the most obvious is the slowed down response that is associated with smoking weed. You become mellowed and “laid-back”. This is due a chemical in weed called delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol or THC which causes a huge release of the feel-good hormone dopamine.
Marijuana causes much damage to the brain. It slows down all you movements and upsets your balance, coordination and reflexes, also impairing your judgement which may cause you to do something stupid and reckless. It also causes hallucinations or makes its victims delusional if taken in large doses.
So why does Australia want to legalize the drug if it can do so much damage to a person who takes it? Well marijuana has had a long known medicinal affect as well, from calming epileptic seizures to reducing pain and inflammation. 3 year old Cooper Wallace suffers from severe epilepsy. Poor Cooper would get over 100 life-threatening seizures a day with no medical relief until under doctors supervision (but not approval) Cassie and Rhett gave their 3 year old son 6ml (in total for the day) of cannabis oil in his milk. Through this treatment their son went from a bed ridden, 100’s of seizures a day boy to a full of life little boy who now only has two to three seizures a day.s
There are many studies that prove the medicinal powers of cannabis and its extract, with most of them being proven very effective in treating or helping out other incurable diseases and problems. Does this outweigh the concerns of addiction and will it be used and abused if it does become legal?