By Lucas D. Wood
MCADOO, Pa. -- The legalization of a plant-based drug that does a ton more of good than bad is constantly being fought against in our legislature by the pharmaceutical industry and some paid-off Republicans, and simply because it's all about the money.
Imagine a universal drug that can treat, heal, and cure almost any problem you have, that isn't ibuprofen or tylenol.
Now imagine if that so-called drug wasn't actually a drug at all, but instead a flower.
Cannabis, also known marijuana, is a plant-based, medically classified drug, and flower that comes from Central and South Asia that has been proven to treat chronic pain, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and social anxiety.
Studies also show that marijuana helps treat multiple sclerosis, (MS,) and yes, its even linked to as a possible cure for cancer.
However, pharmaceutical companies have always fought against the legalization of the plant because pill-based and man-made medications are prescribed less in states that have already legalized marijuana.
Fact: You can't overdose off of marijuana.
But you can on almost any prescribed painkiller medication.
You can argue that smoking marijuana is bad for your lungs.
Fact: You can consume marijuana in other ways than smoking it.
Vaporizing, edibles, and ingestible oils are all alternative ways to consume marijuana.
You can also argue that marijuana interferes with some parts of the brain—such as those affecting emotions, memory and judgment.
Fact: So does alcohol.
But now let's look at the numbers.
A new study, released in the journal Health Affairs, found that, in the 17 states with a medical-marijuana law in place by 2013, prescriptions for painkillers and other classes of drugs fell sharply compared with states that did not have a medical-marijuana law.
The drops were quite significant:
In medical-marijuana states, the average doctor prescribed 265 fewer doses of antidepressants each year, 486 fewer doses of seizure medication, 541 fewer anti-nausea doses and 562 fewer doses of anti-anxiety medication.
If you aren't sitting down already, you might want to do so now as you read the most striking statistic of them all -- the typical physician in a medical-marijuana state prescribed 1,826 fewer doses of painkillers in a given year.
But the reason marijuana is still illegal, is the reason why tobacco isn't: it's all about the money.
The United States government is a corporation that functions just like any fast food chain.
If marijuana would become legal country-wide, sales in liquor, tobacco, and the almighty prescribed painkiller medication would go plummeting down.
However, tax revenue from it would make up for the loss -- but not for the loss that the tobacco companies and the pharmaceutical industry would see.
The legalization of marijuana would control painkiller abuse, and prescribe-happy doctors would make less commission from the pharmaceutical companies that they have their pockets in with.