Drugs in AMerica |
From Sea to Shining Sea |
Patricia Diaz |
GLT 1 111.6.2 |
“Drugs in America from sea to shining sea”
Drug use in the United States has been on a steady rise. This is largely due to the increasing popularity of Marijuana. Marijuana was on the decline from the 1990s to mid to late 2000s but has been on a steady increase since then. This is due to the changing perception and attitudes towards marijuana. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, in 2013, 7.0 percent of 8th graders, and 22.7 percent of 12th graders used marijuana in the last month. Why this sharp increase? This is related to state’s passing of ...view middle of the document...
The interaction can also cause the user to feel panic paranoia and can cause them to hallucinate. The brain function depends on a vast complex interplay of chemicals known as neurotransmitters. They act as carriers of information from one cell (neurons) to another. The use of marijuana effects this interchange be altering the strength of the signals. The THC specifically attaches with the brain protein cannabinoid receptors. The receptors are highly expressed in the area of the brain that are critical for learning, pain perception, memory, and reward processing.
Marijuana has been in use for thousands of years. It goes by many different names. In the United States it goes by pot, smoke, weed, grass, dope, etc. In other countries like Jamaica it’s called ganja. In China it is called Cannabis, Hemp or “Ma”. The Chinese were using the marijuana plant for medical and other purposes for thousands of years. The plant was considered a yin/yang plant. The yin/yang theory is that the female (yin) is weaker, passive and negative and the male (yang) is active, positive and stronger. The theory suggests when yin/yang are balance you have health and harmony. “Ma was used to treat absences of yin, such as: female weaknesses (menstruation), gout, rheumatism, malaria, beri-beri, constipation, and absentmindedness” (Abel, 1980). The plants fibers were used to make rope, paper, and bowstrings for their archer around 2350 B.C. Cannabis for medicinal purposes has shown to be positive but the negative effects I believe outweigh the good.
There is a fierce debate in the country over the legalization of Marijuana for recreational use. Colorado is the first state to legalize it for personal use. People feel that if it is legalized the taxes it would generate will benefit our economy. They also feel that the crime rate would go down since many criminals were incarcerated for buying or selling marijuana. The burden on the judicial system would be alleviated if the drug was legalized for recreational use. However, if the use of marijuana leads to the use of stronger drugs like cocaine then this would be a false assumption. Instead of being arrested for smoking marijuana they will be locked up for using stronger more illicit drugs.
Additionally, the epidemic of illegal drug use in America was once just thought to be just an inner city problem, but today it is everywhere. It stretches from the inner streets of Brooklyn to the corn fields of Nebraska and west to the shores California. No one population is immune to the effects of drug abuse. Children who have used the drugs have shown to indulge in risky behavior. These behaviors can include unsafe sex with an infected person with HIV, unplanned pregnancies. Also, the increase of STD’s in America has shown a marked increase in the last decade. There is a strong correlation between drug abuse and the spread of HIV because of these risky behaviors (HIV/AIDS and Drug Abuse: Interwined Epidemics,...