Marijuana Drug Czar Distorts Report 

Marijuana Drug Czar Distorts Report 
Posted by CN Staff on September 09, 2002 at 09:49:00 PT
Letters to the Editor 
Source: San Francisco Chronicle 
Editor -- On behalf of the Marijuana Policy Project, I would like to thank White House drug czar John Walters for demonstrating the dishonesty of government drug warriors (Open Forum, Sept. 1). Astonishingly, Walters claims that the 1999 Institute of Medicine report didn't urge the government to allow seriously ill people legal access to medical marijuana on a case-by-case basis.
What the institute did say about medical use of marijuana by AIDS and cancer patients was "nausea, appetite loss, pain and anxiety are all afflictions of wasting, and all can be mitigated by marijuana." The institute did urge development of marijuana's active ingredients into a nonsmoked form, but noted, "It will likely be many years before a safe and effective cannabinoid delivery system, such as an inhaler, is available for patients. In the meantime there are patients with debilitating symptoms for whom smoked marijuana might provide relief." Taken in context, the institute's message is unmistakable. Walters' attempts to deny the obvious are embarrassing. He blasts Marijuana Policy Project for our New York Times ad urging that the institute's recommendation be followed, but ignores the hundreds of organizations and individuals who signed that ad, including former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Joycelyn Elders, world-renowned AIDS researcher Dr. Michael Saag, researcher and health author Dr. Andrew Weil, the American Public Health Association, the California Nurses Association and the California Pharmacists Association, to name just a few. Maybe these experts were duped. Maybe John Walters, unbeknown to us, has medical expertise beyond that of the world's leading physicians and researchers. Or maybe he's lying in a desperate attempt to save a collapsing policy. BRUCE MIRKENMarijuana Policy Project Washington FOOLISH ARGUMENTSEditor -- Drug czar John P. Walters' op-ed (Open Forum, Sept. 1) attacking marijuana use is a laughingstock. First, he bemoans marijuana's increased potency -- as if the existence of vodka alongside beer made alcohol more dangerous. Then, he notes a "260 percent" increase in adolescent "admissions." Admissions to what? Treatment? Hospitals? He deftly fails to mention actual numbers (instead of percentage increases) because they would show alcohol-and- tobacco-related health problems to be far more numerous. Then, he winds his way through a battery of quotes (from the Academy of Sciences). Yet, he so obviously takes things out of context, it makes you wonder. It would appear that the drug czar's job is now to produce arguments that fool fewer people less of the time. JOEL FRANGQUISTSan Francisco Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA)Published: Monday, September 9, 2002 Copyright: 2002 San Francisco Chronicle.  Page A - 20 Contact: letters sfchronicle.comWebsite: Articles & Web Site:Marijuana Policy Project Marijuana Today - Setting Record Straight Must Stop the War on Medical Marijuana
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Comment #4 posted by i420 on September 10, 2002 at 13:31:44 PT
.....thats all I got to say about that
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Comment #3 posted by tlspn on September 09, 2002 at 18:11:39 PT:
John Walters
is becoming synonymous with lying. Like the boy who cried wolf, he wouldn't be believed even if he told the truth.Bruce Mirken has it right. Our drug czar is lying in a desparate attempt to save a collapsing policy.t
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Comment #2 posted by John Markes on September 09, 2002 at 16:15:20 PT
just silly..
 John Walters, America's newest laughing stock in the political world...
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Comment #1 posted by kaptinemo on September 09, 2002 at 12:49:38 PT:
Lincoln's Dictum proving truer every day
And as Mr. Frangquist pointed out, as proof, fewer people are buying this rancid, slime-dripping bill of goods. If he keeps up the miserable lies about cannabis any longer, Mr. Walters may yet be forced into the long awaited debate that will singe his backside publicly. Oh, hasten the day...
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