Legalizing Marijuana

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Legalizing Marijuana

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Marijuana is a drug known commonly for the intoxication it delivers to the consumer and is one of the most consumed drugs by addicts. Extracted from a plant called Hemp, it also has medical benefits if administered by a medical practitioner in the right amounts. Doctors around the world are accepting the use of this drug for medical purposes but ethical concerns have been raised in this regard. Many people question the ethical nature of this practice. In this paper we study the ethical implications of the use of this drug in medicine, in light of ethical theories. Although some theories like the Egoism and Relativism theory do not consider the usage of marijuana as unethical, the Utilitarian theory raises concerns about the practice.

Table of Contents


Thesis Statement2



Medical Forms of Marijuana2

A review of the ethical theories2



Virtue ethics2


Emotivism Theory2

Ethical egoism2

Effects of Marijuana consumption2

Cognitive effects2

Mental effects2


Medical Usage of Marijuana in light of the ethical theories2

Stance of the Utilitarian theory2

Stance of the other theories2




In general, Marijuana refers to the extracts of a plant that can be used for intoxication of various levels. Its consumption is illegal in almost every country of the world with strict regulations and punishment for its possession or consumption. It is a drug that is used by addicts of all ages and consumed commonly in high schools, universities and clubs.

Scientists and medical researchers have realized that Marijuana can be used for medical purposes and it is very useful for healing certain ailments. This led to the term 'Medical Marijuana' which refers to the use of Cannabis (Botanical name of the plant 'Hemp' from which Marijuana is made). There are ten different types of Cannabis that doctors and medical researchers have identified as useful for curing certain ailments.

The use of marijuana for medical purposes has been a topic of great debate right from the beginning. Where doctors claim that it is a great medical advancement, ethical purists claim that medical marijuana is unethical and (to a great extent) it is illegal to use the drug, even for medical purposes. The reasons vary but each one of them somehow imply to the intoxication and other effects that the drug has on the user. Having said that, the use of marijuana for medical purposes is becoming more and more contained and tolerated over the last few decades. Countries like Canada, Australia, Netherlands, UK and New Zealand have allowed the use of marijuana in medical practices up to a certain extent. In the United States, it is acceptable in almost 14 states to use medical marijuana in a controlled manner for treating certain ailments.

Thesis Statement

For the following, the main question is whether legalizing the use of marijuana in medical practices is acceptable or not. The paper considers the implications of the usage of marijuana in the light of ethical theories to consider the stance of the action. The thesis statement for this paper is:

'Is the legalizing of Marijuana for medical purpose an ethical action?'


In the United States, fourteen states ...
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