Marijuana (also spelled marihuana) is the common name given to any DRUG preparation from the hemp plant, Cannabis sativa. Various forms of this drug are known by different names throughout the world, such as kif in Morocco, dagga in South Africa, and ganja in India. Hashish refers to a dried, resinous substance that exudes from the flowering tops of the plant. In Western culture, cannabis preparations have acquired a variety of slang names, including grass, pot, tea, reefer, weed, and Mary Jane. Cannabis has been smoked, eaten in cakes, and drunk in beverages. In Western cultures marijuana is prepared most often as a tobacco like mixture that is smoked in a pipe or rolled into a cigarette.
One of the oldest known medicines, cannabis was acknowledged as early as 2700 BC, in a Chinese manuscript. Throughout the centuries it has been used both medicinally and as an intoxicant. The major psychoactive component of this drug, however, was not identified until the mid-1960s; this ingredient is tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as THC. At present, other cannabinoids have been isolated and their possible biochemical activities are being explored. Psychoactive compounds are found in all parts of the male and female plant, with the greatest concentration in the flowering tops. The content of these active compounds varies greatly from plant to plant, depending on genetic and environmental factors.
Just a note to help you realize the harmlessness of advocating the legalization of marijuana: [The following statistics are derived from the 1997 Information Please Almanac, (c)1996 Houghton Mifflin Co.]
1. There are approximately 300,000 deaths caused by alcohol annually.
2. There are approximately 160,000 deaths caused by tobacco annually.
3. There are 0 deaths caused by marijuana annually.
There are 0 people who have medical conditions eased by consumption of alcohol.
There are 0 people who have medical conditions eased by consumption of tobacco.
There are 28,000,000 people who have medical conditions eased by consumption of marijuana.
Marijuana eases tension in users hence lessening violence (how often have you heard of hippies fighting?) as well as enhancing artistic creativity. The majority of marijuana users is under age 25, whereas the percentage of the workforce under age 25 is only 20%.
Marijuana was first curbed in 1937 under similar restrictions as prohibition, but was never re-legalized like alcohol .
The history of Marijuana