Category Archives: RS 1

Glenn, Adrianne. “False Representations: Media Portrayal of Marijuana.” The Pitt News. University of Pittsburgh, 19 Apr. 2015. Web. 16 July 2015. .

Adrienne Glenn is not pleased with how marijuana has been portrayed on television or in films. She usually writes about other social topics in The Pitt News. She finds the way that television has portrayed marijuana is unfair and misleading to the truth about marijuana. She also discusses how there are little to no films or shows that display the reality of marijuana use for medical purposes and how it isn’t as harmful as people believe it to be.

Now in recent years there have been many shows that depict the use and selling of marijuana. However, these depictions are flat and end up the same way. The user is someone that appears less intelligent and the sellers end up going to prison for their deeds. This display doesn’t represent how marijuana can be good and have a positive effect on people especially those that need it medicinally. It also fails to represent why some people resort to selling the drug illegally, Glenn mentions. The media has fed these images to the public and have created a notion that marijuana is wrong in every light. Glenn, goes on to discuss the medicinal benefits of marijuana and how it’s main chemicals help against things like pain and inflammation. Although, as Glenn states, marijuana is the most popular drug among adults, these reports have not made it to the media. Glenn argues that the misrepresentation of marijuana is what is perpetuating the fear associated with it.

Glenn then moves to shortly discuss the positive portrayals of marijuana in a recent documentary. The documentary records the long-term effects on someone who smoked daily after a month of cleansing. There appeared to be no effects on the person. Glenn comments, that this is exactly the type of thing the media needs to do when it comes to representing marijuana in order for there to be progress on the subject. Which is true if we are going to want reasonable debates on whether or not marijuana is something that should be legal or banned altogether.

This research is valuable because it addresses how marijuana is portrayed and the way people see it. It is true that it is seen in a more negative light because of such portrayals but in order to truly asses whether or not pot should be legalized we need to be informed on both sides of the subject. This research may be valuable to others because maybe they have only seen the negative side that is portrayed in media and refuse to think twice about having a ration discussion on the subject.


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Research Summary 1

Smith, S. E. “How legalizing pot could save America’s economy.” The Week Magazine, 09 Nov. 2014. Web. 16 Jul. 2015.

S.E. Smith is a writer and commentator who focuses on the current issues going on in the world. In “How legalizing pot could save America’s economy,” published by, Smith highlights the economic growth that could stimulate from the legalization of marijuana in the United States.

According to Smith, the black market sell of marijuana accumulates an average revenue of $113 billion dollars annually. Smith argues that marijuana would bring in billions of tax dollars to the government and also save the government money since many people incarcerated are on drug related charges, the most common being marijuana. Smith points out that the legalization of marijuana would allow the government to save money by not wasting it on trying to prevent drug wars. Therefore, the government could use the surplus of money to focus on other issues facing the country. To depict the positive effect legalization of marijuana would have on the economy, Smith discusses it’s “ripple effect” on the economy. The cultivation of marijuana provides jobs to Americans in various different fields and reduces the number of men being incarcerated, allowing them to provide for their family without aid from the government, therefore indirectly improving the economy. Smith in other words, is stating that marijuana is something the government could capitalize on and in return help communities who heavily depend on the government financially.

Smith briefly discusses how the legalization of marijuana in the United States could benefit tourism in the country by allowing people to go in to shops and sample marijuana products. The well-known areas will generate a lot of tourist who will buy marijuana and in return will be benefiting the economy.

This is a valuable resource because you are given insight on how the legalization of marijuana can help the economy and communities most affected by the illegal distribution of it. This article gives facts as to how marijuana can benefit everyone and is not simply against marijuana because it is “bad.” It provides you with what people who are for legalization of marijuana thinks, their perspective, and opinion on the subject. This would be useful for others who are pro legalizing marijuana because of the facts and good logical reasoning behind legalizing marijuana, or it could be used to counter the arguments made in the article.


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Research Summary 1

Stimson, Charles. “Why Legalizing Pot Is a Bad Idea.” Daily Signal, 30 November 2014. Web. 16 July 2015.

As criminal law expert Charles Stimson wrote in this article, people should think twice before they decide legalizing pot is a good idea. It has already had a major effect on Colorado in which it has been legalized for both medical and recreational uses.

Stimson introduces his article by arguing that legalization is not inevitable, contrary to what “pot pushers want you to believe.” Legalization activists use the states that have already legalized marijuana as success examples to try and convince us that legalizing marijuana isn’t a terrible idea, however, if you really look at the statistics and actual facts, Stimson states, we are able to see the negative factors behind weed’s legalization.

According to Stimson, Dr. Kevin Sabet (who is the former senior advisor to President Obama’s drug policy office) claims that “the average strength of today’s marijuana is five to six times what is was in the 1960s and 1970s.” Knowing this fact in itself, according to Stimson, should be a huge red flag that we should pause before determining whether we do or do not agree with the legalization of marijuana.

There are specific negative side effects that have been caused by the legalization of pot in Colorado, states Stimson, and a report by a federal grant-funded agency found the following changes have occurred since it became legal: an increase in youth consumption, almost 50 percent of Denver arrestees tested positive for marijuana, marijuana-related emergency-room visits increased 57 percent from 2011-2013, and marijuana-related hospitalizations have increased 82 percent since 2008. As if these were not eye-opening enough, Stimson goes on to say that “adolescent marijuana users have lower educational attainment than non-using peers.” Taking these effects into consideration, Stimson points out, we can better understand the reasons behind certain employers and parents who are against marijuana legalization.

I found this article to be useful because most of what I have read and researched about marijuana legalization usually leaned toward it being a positive thing or simply inevitable. In this article, though, we are given a the opposite perspective of pot legalization based on negative effects marijuana has had. I think others will find this useful because it sheds light on the cons that would come along with legalization of marijuana based on actual data that has been taken in places where it is already legal.


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Bertsche, Rachel.”Teens and Marijuana: The Surprising Truth.” Yahoo!, 15 July. 2015. Web. 15 July. 2015.

Rachel Bertsche is a writer for yahoo and the author of Teens and Marijuana: The Surprising Truth. In the researched article  published by recently, Bertsche inform us about how the legalization of marijuana has not affected the consumption of marijuana within the different age group by much. Pointedly, she mention the percentage of the consumption of marijuana from 2002 to 2013 and it was surprisingly consistent as the percentage hasn’t change much. She included the age of middle school kids and older  teen to back up her statement of how legalization of marijuana doesn’t mean that there will be a increase of younger adolescents.

According to Bertsche, over the last decade, marijuana has even lost its popularity among ages 12-14 and older teen.  In recent statistic posted about marijuana, the use of marijuana has drop from 6 percent in 2002 to 4.5 percent in 2013. For older teen it has decreases from 26 percent in 2002 to 22 percent in 2013. This study has proven that even with legalization of marijuana overdose is not a problem. In addition, marijuana is very accepted by medical group who support the legalization.

Bertsche article show support by mentioning the lead author Christopher Salas-Wright, assistant professor in the School of Social Work at the University of Texas at Austin, telling Yahoo Parents about the research they did that prove how there is no “dramatic spike national level” in the use of marijuana within the youth. She also mention laws changing across country have to deal with the decrease of use in marijuana. Bertsche mention Salas-Wright on how the following information is not enough to state what is going on in state like Colorado and Washington to keep a mutual opinion on the topic of marijuana. Then she also state other study to prove the no increase in marijuana use.

I found this article useful because I used to question the topic of marijuana and how come people think it might  become a problem. I  am personally very interested in reading and doing some more research on the impact of the drug as year pass in order to gain a better understanding of the subject. Other people in the class might find this essay useful as well, if they ever question the logic behind people thinking if it is good or bad.When thinking about how the policies that people make in the United States affect the consumption of marijuana within all age, I hope this could give you something to think about .


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Adolescent and Marijuana

Marcus, Ruth. “Ruth Marcus: The perils of legalized pot” The Washington Post, 02 Jan. 2014, Web. 15 Jul. 2015.

Ruth Marcus is an American journalist and editorial writer for The Post, specializing in American politics and domestic policy. She studied at Yale University where she wrote for the college newspaper. Later she wrote for the National Law Journal,before attending Harvard Law School. Marcus uses this article to not argue about how marijuana is the worst legal substance but her main concern about teenagers obtaining marijuana. She discusses how easily it is for teenagers to gain illegal substance disorders.

Marcus starts by addressing other basic reasons about why it is not a good idea to legalize marijuana but does not go into detail. She uses a conclusion of the American Medical Association about how cannabis is commonly involved in drugged driving with drivers being under the age 21. Marcus states, “…our kids will not be better off with another legal mind-altering substance.”  In other words, Marcus believes that legal marijuana should not be something teenagers have their hands on.

According to Marcus, a 2012 study of more than 1,000 New Zealanders from birth to age 38 found that cannabis use was associated with neuropsychological decline broadly across domains of functioning.  Proving as she herself writes that,” the decrease in IQ was linked only to those with adolescent marijuana use, not those who started in adulthood.”  She then reflects on how even though those who “started as teens, stopping didn’t fully restore functioning.” Particularly aiming for the effects of marijuana on an adolescent brain.

As a mother herself, Marcus claims “minors will use it.” Referring the legalization of marijuana would be “more widely available” for the youth.  Her bias is clear when she mentions about a majority of Americans supporting legalization the previous year and disagrees when she writes, “If this doesn’t make you nervous, you are smoking something. Maybe even legally.”

This article gives an input of teenagers which was interesting because marijuana is mostly used in that age group. It is contended that the danger of legalized marijuana will greatly effect the adolescent in a negative way. This controversy will remain ” a trend that reveals itself in the course of the year obvious and inexorable.”


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Research Summary 1

Gupta, Sanjay Dr. ” Why I changed my mind on weed”. CNN, 08 Aug. 2013. Web. 15 Jul. 2015

Dr. Sanjay Gupta is CNN’s Chief Medical Correspondent and author of “Why I changed my mind on weed”, published by CNN. com August 2013.  In his article Dr. Gupta expresses how a more in-depth look into pot, changed his perspective on the topic . Having went along with the narrative that marijuana deserves to be on the DEA’s schedule one substance list, Gupta was surprised and  disappointed that pots’ benefits have been kept in the dark.

According to Gupta, the way that marijuana is perceived in this country is  unfairly skewed, partly because of the lack of studies proving its benefits. During his research into the topic, Gupta found that only 6% of marijuana studies conducted within the United States investigate its pros, making a “highly distorted picture” when looking at weed.  Even if someone wants to study marijuana in a scholarly fashion, you need weed and approval from the government; which is extremely hard to come by, Gupta states. The National Institute on Drug Abuse is the reigning champ when it comes to drug studies, and more often than not they only focus on the negative effects. This blatant disregard for what  marijuana can offer is what has shaped the anti-marijuana mind in America.

Furthering his research, Gupta came across a young child, that since birth has been riddled with horrible seizures. Colorado native Charlotte Figi, was up to 300 seizures a week until marijuana came into the picture and reduced that to just a few a month.  The automatic criminalization of marijuana makes it difficult for success stories like this to be heard. For the medical community to turn a deaf  ear on the pros of pot is, “irresponsible”, in Gupta’s opinion. More over, Gupta writes, the potentiality of abuse is very limited, making marijuana what it is intended to be; harmless.

Going deeper into the history of marijuana in the U.S., Dr. Gupta comes to the startling realization that marijuana was only to be a schedule one substance until more in depth research had been conducted. Dr. Roger Egeberg, the Assistant Health Secretary during the 70s, was the person who deemed marijuana addictive. As Gupta dug deeper he came to the conclusion that science had absolutely nothing to do with the decision, but the “absence of science”.  Considering that its been 40+ years since that report, Gupta believes that it is past time for the reevaluation of marijuana.

Because of Dr. Gupta’s own due diligence with the subject marijuana, this makes him the perfect candidate as a back bone for my own research into the topic. The fact that he reached out of his comfort zone and allowed himself to turn away from conventional thinking, is what drew me to him. I believe my classmates would find his outlook on pot useful, because he is an academic, a doctor, someone who knows their stuff, but isn’t too knowing to not learn any more.


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