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Marijuana and Tobacco - Term Paper Example

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One of the aspects of current drug policy that continues to provide tension and a level of debate is why certain drugs, such as nicotine, are allowed to be produced and consumed within the purview of government regulation…
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Marijuana and Tobacco
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Download file to see previous pages Within such an understanding, the following analysis will seek to compare and contrast the objective and subjective effects of both nicotine and marijuana. Moreover, an analysis of the different government policies and regulations that constrain their usage will be analyzed alongside a discussion of the health risks that utilizing these substances necessarily portend. It is the hope of this author that such an analysis will land the reader to have a more actionable and definitive understanding of current drug policy had whether or not it represents an effective and ethical response to issues of public health are evidenced within current society (Hendricks et al., 2012). Although it is not the place of this brief analysis to advocate a safe entirely new approach to drug policy within the United States, it is the hope of this research that a greater level of inference with regards to the appropriate response framework that government represents will be able to be inferred. With respect to the subjective and other objective affects of nicotine, the addictive substance found in tobacco products, these are invariably concentric upon feelings of well-being, mood stabilization, and the release of dopamine and other “feel-good” chemicals that actively bind to receptors in the brain. As with any type of addictive drug, repeated usage of the drug only compounds the extent to which addiction is evidenced in the individual. Most importantly, as compared to marijuana, nicotine is physically addictive. Although there have been a great deal of scientific and social experimentations with regards to the degree of addiction that marijuana might necessarily portend, it has been definitively proven that although marijuana increases “feel-good” sensation, and has the objective and subjective effects of heightening mood sensitivity, vastly increasing the enjoyment of food, and a litany of other sensually sensory stimuli inputs, it is not physically addictive as is nicotine (Rammo et al., 2013). This comes as something of a surprise due to the fact that it is nicotine that is ultimately allowed and regulated within the United States whereas marijuana is outlawed. Naturally, many individual states have sought to redefine marijuana policy so that certain levels of possession and usage, on a personal or medical level, are acceptable; however, this does not in any way justify or alter the approach that the federal government takes with regards to the use and possession of this illicit substance (Odden, 2012). Delving into the history of marijuana use and cultivation within the United States, it has definitively been noted that one of the main reasons for why marijuana is not currently legal is due to the fact that it posed a fundamental threat to large tobacco companies and was thus sidelined via legislation over 100 years ago (Goode, 2012). Naturally, it cannot be said that any and all reasons for marijuana being outlawed has to do with special interests and or big money. Rather, marijuana, as compared to tobacco, is a psychoactive drug. What is meant by this is the fact that whereas one can smoke a cigarette, or derived nicotine via a litany of different delivery methods the psychological mindset of the individual remains unaltered. Although they may feel a sense of well-being, their ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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