(Note: This column is a reader response to Ken Alpern’s CityWatch article: “Medical Pot, Where are the Doctors?”) [LINK]
Wow, just, wow!
The FDA is SO FAST to push through this Swine flu vaccine, and that HPV vaccine after minimal testing of the effects it will have on the population, and after reported cases that link these vaccines to severe health issues. Some articles I have read about the Swine Flu vaccine stated that the impact on the population would not be known until a substantial amount of vaccinations were administered, with the general population being used as their test subjects.
There have been repeated occurrences of Gillian Bards syndrome and other debilitating disorders that are directly linked to that vaccine.
A lot of the anti psychotic drugs on the market today also have not gone through the rigorous testing needed to determine long term side effects, for example, Seroquil, an anti psychotic which was once widely prescribed for its benefits, ended up causing liver failure, severe weight gain, a higher propensity for diabetes, and a boat load of other health problems that have led to a huge class action law suit.
So this dermatologist's opinion on needing medical proof that medical marijuana is something that actually works time and time again, when adequate testing has been very difficult to get due to lack of funding and other issues, and even though it has been experimented with for years and years is comical.
Why don't they turn to the population of willing participants who are reaping the benefits as their test subjects and medical proof that this is a functional option for them just like they are using as a test engine for their precious vaccines.
One thing that this article does highlight is that we need to be aware of is that we need to be aware of statements like Mr. Alpern’s: "Unfortunately, it is those of lower functioning capabilities, and with less self-control (some of whom have been fellow physicians, by the way) that force me to support the efforts of City Attorney Carmen Trutanich, County District Attorney Steve Cooley and the L.A. City Council to reign in “medical marijuana” … which is much, much more concentrated, addictive and dangerous than the “reefer madness” marijuana of the 1950’s."
“I don't know how we can safe guard ourselves from the idiots out there..." And some how coming up with away of dispensing this in terms of how strong one strand is compared to another, but that is an ongoing battle that will be fought until legalization and FDA approval so that the effects of certain strands can be compared to others and categorized as such.
Also, here he seems to link medical marijuana to an increase in crime rate, neighborhood deterioration and on and on "Because ‘medical marijuana’ is NOT being sold and distributed in a “medical” fashion, because it IS out of control and IS leading to crime, neighborhood deterioration and a horrible message to children who are seeing adults not acting like grownups … and (please mark my words here) will lead to a frightening wave of Driving-While-Stoned incidents by individuals who are exploiting the facilitated availability of high-grade, new-wave marijuana without being counseled and monitored to utilize the judgment so critical for any controlled substance."
I would love to see statistics for this. People drive on pain medications, alcohol, anti psychotics and even BENADRYL for Christ sake, all of which say use caution when operating heavy machinery because it will impair your ability to function.
Once we are able to de-stigmatize "pot" as a hard core gateway drug, and present it as cannabis, a viable option for doctors to recommend to their patients, we will begin to see less and less nay saying.
What we need to do is strip this subject of any terminology that has a negative connotation like drug.
Even marijuana has developed a meaning that makes some people turn their noses up.
For example, towards the end of the article you even see this doctor placing medical marijuana in quotations as if to lessen and make fun of the new terminology used that has brought us this far: “Because ‘medical marijuana’ is NOT being sold and distributed in a ‘medical’ fashion, because it IS out of control and IS leading to crime, neighborhood deterioration and a horrible message to children who are seeing adults not acting like grownups …"
In that one sentence he has stripped marijuana of anything medical, leaving us at square one.
I like the word cannabis. I think cannabis is a great word that some people have not even heard of yet, and its strictly scientific, and if we can brighten the interpretation of that word so much that people think of something completely different when they hear it compared to when they hear marijuana we have a start as well.
I remember a story of a child doing a school project on dihydrogen monoxide, and how dangerous the effects of this compound are on people, I got some facts from this website http://www.dhmo.org/facts.html, the abbreviation of dihydrogen monoxide is DHMO:
• Death due to accidental inhalation of DHMO, even in small quantities.
• Prolonged exposure to solid DHMO causes severe tissue damage.
• Excessive ingestion produces a number of unpleasant though not typically life-threatening side-effects.
• DHMO is a major component of acid rain.
• Gaseous DHMO can cause severe burns.
• Contributes to soil erosion.
• Leads to corrosion and oxidation of many metals.
• Contamination of electrical systems often causes short-circuits.
• Exposure decreases effectiveness of automobile brakes.
• Found in biopsies of pre-cancerous tumors and lesions.
• Given to vicious dogs involved in recent deadly attacks.
• Often associated with killer cyclones in the U.S. Midwest and elsewhere, and in hurricanes including deadly storms in Florida, New Orleans and other areas of the southeastern U.S.
• Thermal variations in DHMO are a suspected contributor to the El Nino weather effect.
Don't you all think we should outlaw this compound? Doesn't it sound so horrible? Well guess what, its WATER!!! One of the most important elements when sustaining life!
Everything has negatives and positives, and as far am I am concerned cannabis has caused fewer deaths than water. Now that's a step in the right direction.
The thing is, we want things to be safer, regulated, we don't want idiots running around getting high, and parents setting bad examples for their children, that is not what this is all about.
This is about a medical need that people have, and cannabis happens to be a viable option that helps them deal with the problems they are having, unlike many other drugs that make things worse.
I suffer from PTSD, and cannabis has been MORE THAN HELPFUL getting me through my flash backs, anxiety attacks and other issues related to it.
It has also been therapeutic when helping me with my mold induced asthma, so much so that I do not have to take any inhaled steroids, or albuterol on a daily basis. It has helped with IBS and migraine headaches, all of which I suffer from. I feel the benefits are so great, and I don’t even have cancer!
Medical marijuana is not creating these problems. We would like just as much as you for cannabis to be better understood, distributed and regulated much like other pharmaceuticals, but we are working with what we have been given.
If medical cannabis were allowed in pharmacies, we would be there, but we are not, and until then, dispensaries it is.
We both have the same issues, and are trying to achieve the same goals of safety.
I do hope you see these are the beginning stages of something great, and instead of pointing out problems why not look towards proposing solutions to help these sick and suffering people being the medical professional you are.
You did mention that you would be willing to recommend it if there was greater proof. It appears as though your wish has been granted, Please read the article hyperlinked below.
American Medical Association (AMA), the largest physician-based group in the country, has "reverse[d] its long-held position that marijuana be retained as a Schedule I substance with no medical value. The AMA adopted a report drafted by the AMA Council on Science and Public Health (CSAPH) entitled, "Use of Cannabis for Medicinal Purposes," which affirmed the therapeutic benefits of marijuana and called for further research." (See report.) [LINK]
Vol 7 Issue 93
Pub: Nov 13, 2009