One of the most prevalent issues in American society today would have to be the debate over the legalization of marijuana. This has been an ongoing topic in pop culture for the past 5 to 10 years. More recently certain states have decided to legalize the use of Cannabis for Therapeutic Purposes (CTP) which allows adults over the age of 18 who possess a physician issued medical card to purchase and consume medical grade marijuana. Needless to say this has been a controversial issue when it comes to public health and safety. In order to get to the bottom of this issue twenty-eight studies were used and reviewed to track the following themes; CTP and illegal cannabis use, CTP and other public health issues; CTP, crime and neighbourhood disadvantage.
Out of the twenty-eight included studies, all of them lacked the proper evidence to support a correlation between the legalization of CTP and detrimental effects suspected to general public health and safety. This lack of evidence provides some reassurance that the legalization and distribution of medical marijuana at its current levels will not be the decline of modern day society. However, it is worth considering the factors if marijuana were to become more accepted and commercialized throughout society. It is possible that the full effects of the legalization of CTP have yet to take place. It is a possibility that if marijuana becomes socially acceptable and available that it could pose a threat to public safety, however their is no such research available to support these claims. In conclusion it is safe to say that many of the common concerns regarding medical cannabis legalization are unsupported and we as a society must figure out and draw the line between healthy and hazardous.
Sznitman, S. (2014, September 17). Cannabis for Theraputic Purposes and Public Health and Safety: A systematic and critical review. Retrieved October 30, 2014, from http://www.sciencedirect.com.ezaccess.libraries.psu.edu/science/article/pii/S0955395914002679