The initial approach taken by those that would have marijuana legalized for both medical and recreational use is called compassionate use. Who could possibly object to the use of a substance that would alleviate the suffering of the sick, the suffering and the dying? Most rational, empathetic souls would never stand in the way of access to such medicines. I count myself among those in favor of compassionate use. I also happen feel that the Europeans that use heroin for terminal patients to have some merit.
One of the many issues that I have with medical marijuana is that of the primary motivation of the user. In Nevada, the qualifying conditions for obtaining a Medical Marijuana Recommendation/Card are:
- Cachexia (wasting of the body due to chronic illness)
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Persistent Muscle Spasms or Seizures
- Severe Nausea or Pain
- Other Conditions Subject to Approval
These are all valid, legitimate indicators for the use of marijuana. However, there are some 85 different compounds, called Cannabinoids, found in the marijuana plant. THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) is the one we hear the most about. It is the substance that caused the euphoric stoned feelings that are desired by those that seek chemically induced pleasure. Another compound is CBD (Cannabidiol) has been shown to calm nausea, increase appetite, reduce pain and reduce seizures. Pot growers have for years bred the plant to contain lower amounts of CBD because it also acts as a suppressant of THC’s effects. The THC levels in most marijuana strains has increased to astounding levels in recent years (more about that in a future post). CBD is not desirable for those seeking to get high. Other growers have selectively grown pot that has high CBD levels and very low THC content. So take a guess as to which type of medical marijuana is sought by most users? They of course seek the intoxicating form of medical marijuana. Why? Because the primary motivation of most individuals holding a medical marijuana card is to get high and has little to do with medical treatment for a serious affliction.
Another issue with medical marijuana is classifying as a medicine. There is really no such thing as a prescription for marijuana. We receive a recommendation (a medical marijuana card) from a “doctor” that says we should use marijuana for a condition indicating such use. A substance is actually a valid medicine if it has been studied and tested by the Food & Drug Administration. You would then receive a prescription for that medication from a physician. That prescription would be filled at CVS or Walgreens and the pharmacist would give you the amount of medication to be taken and how often that should be done. He would also advise you of any possible side effects and warn you of possible interactions with other drugs that you may be taking.
More Next Week…Tricky Dick Buries Weed with the 1970 Controlled Substances Act
Listen To My Discussion On Medical Marijuana on The Chip Evans Show With Paul Malikowski