Marijuana is Justified as Medicine 

  Marijuana is Justified as Medicine 

Posted by CN Staff on May 24, 2005 at 08:12:49 PT
By Joe Baker, Daily News Staff  
Source: Newport Daily News 

Rhode Island -- OK. Right up front, full disclosure: I have inhaled. Considering I came of age in the 1960s, this shouldn't come as any surprise. Those of my generation can understand. Those younger need to know that the vast majority (and that is no exaggeration) of my peers also inhaled. Pot was so prevalent in the late 1960s and early 1970s that if a cop busted you and you had less than an ounce, he would just confiscate it and send you on your way. And you can be sure that pot would never see its way to the evidence room.
Now that my soul has been bared, let's move on to the subject of medical marijuana. Last Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved legislation that would make Rhode Island the 11th state in the country to legalize marijuana use for patients suffering debilitating medical problems, like cancer, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis or AIDS. On Wednesday, the House Health, Education and Welfare Committee heard two hours of testimony on its version of the legislation, most of which supported the bill.Let's get down to basics. Those of us fortunate enough to be healthy cannot begin to imagine the pain and suffering of someone undergoing chemotherapy. We may be able to intellectually understand, but can we ever really know the side effects of the very powerful medication AIDS patients must take in an attempt to control that deadly disease? Nor is it easy to really feel the pain of MS patients whose joints lock up daily, preventing them from leading a normal life.If it were only Cheech and Chong admirers promoting medical use of marijuana, opponents might have reason to be leery. But groups such as the Rhode Island Medical Society, the Rhode Island Nurses Association, the American Academy of Family Physicians and the American Public Health Association have endorsed the movement. When normally conservative states like Arizona, Alaska and Montana adopt medical marijuana laws by wide margins, you know support is not limited to spaced-out potheads.One argument opponents like to raise is that medical marijuana laws will increase juveniles' accessibility to pot. Anyone reading the police log in the paper knows there is no accessibility problem now. It apparently isn't hard to find. So it's unlikely that legalizing medical marijuana is going to increase the supply out there on the streets.Opponents also like to raise the specter of thousands of potheads lining up to get access to legal weed. Again, accessibility isn't the issue. And if the bill clearly defines the qualifying symptoms, it will make it difficult for a doctor to prescribe marijuana for patients or for the state Department of Health to certify the patient's right of access to medical marijuana.Steve Brown, of the American Civil Liberties Union, hit the nail on the head when he told the House committee that providing comfort to seriously ill patients was worth the possibility that a few people might somehow skirt the law and get access to legal marijuana illegally. That possibility doesn't stop doctors now from prescribing very serious drugs (Valium, Percocet, Vicodin, OxyContin, to name a few) with much more potent side effects.Finally, despite the fact that marijuana has been widely used for more than 30 years (really a lot longer, but it just wasn't publicly recognized), there has been little scientific evidence that it is all that harmful. Oh, sure, some opponents are going to dig out some obscure studies showing that reefer madness is a reality. But supporters can dig out their own studies to disprove that.Given the lack of solid proof that marijuana is the evil weed opponents make it out to be - and given a set of regulations for allowing its medical use - denying its use to those in desperate physical need hardly seems like the American thing to do. Where are all those compassionate conservatives when you really need them? Complete Title: From The Statehouse: Marijuana is Justified as Medicine Source: Newport Daily News, The (RI)Author: Joe Baker, Daily News Staff Published: Tuesday, May 24, 2005Copyright: 2005 Newport Daily NewsContact: Editor NewportRI.comWebsite: Articles & Web Site:Medical Marijuana Information Links Committee Passes Medical Marijuana Bill Debate Continues Consider Medical Marijuana Bill

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Comment #22 posted by afterburner on May 26, 2005 at 11:10:42 PT
Available in Canada: Let Me Know re USA Access
Drug data opens up
May. 26, 2005. 09:36 AM"Patients and doctors can now learn more about possible side effects of medicines. Access to that information, restricted for years by Health Canada, was opened to the public for the first time yesterday through the health ministry's website. Rita Daly reports."
National database |  [Full Story]
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Comment #21 posted by FoM on May 25, 2005 at 13:00:34 PT
Thank You Shishaldin!
You got mail!
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Comment #20 posted by Shishaldin on May 25, 2005 at 12:39:09 PT:
FoM, drop me a line
FoM-I've got an MPEG copy of Jack Herer's speech from a month and a half ago(!) for you, gratis. I was hoping the good folks at POT-TV would put it up as streaming video, but as of yet they haven't, and I wanted to get you a copy. Other CNEWS'ers can drop me a line (and maybe a buck or two for postage?) and I'll send you a copy, too. Peace and Strength,Shishaldin
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Comment #19 posted by FoM on May 25, 2005 at 11:51:16 PT
Money Money Money Money
Oh how I wish money wasn't so darn important in all the issues of today. We all need money but there comes a time when money doesn't matter. Someone who has a terminal disease will tell you that. I really wish that common sense and justice would prevail at least when our issue is concerned. It would help me have a little more faith in our system. 
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Comment #18 posted by kaptinemo on May 25, 2005 at 10:37:03 PT:
Paradigm shifts
Most people alive today cannot remember a time where physicians didn't wash their hands and sterilize their instruments. They can't remember a time when germs were scoffed at, and innoculations were unheard of. The paradigm back then was that germs and micro-organisms didn't exist. Hard to believe, I know...looking back from the vanntage point of history. Yet, there truly was such a time...and it had it's share of ignorant people who denied the circumstantial suggestion of germs causing illness. The medical status quo of the time was amongst the most rabid opponents of germ theory, and railed against it's practitioners as being lunatics. Then, as if an (admittedly slow motion) switch had been turned on, antisepsis became the new paradigm. Now, only a lunatic *would* scoff at the need for antisepsis.A massive paradigm shift occured, and it affected and continues to affect all our lives. But nobody really thinks about it; we take it all for granted.The analogy is obvious. Cannabis-based medicinal compounds are being discovered at an ever-increasing pace. Nations which have little or no political advantage to adhering to the US's insane denials of its' medical efficacy are leading the effort to discover more such uses. Every month a new insight into the extraordinary usefulness of this common weed is made. When the paradigm finally finishes shifting, and most people find these things to be useful and good, then there'll be Hell to pay for the pols and the bureaucrats who've done their level best to impede progress in this area. And you can bet good money they know it. They know they are in a game of musical chairs; most seats have been taken, and the last ones standing when the prohibition music stops will be lucky if they *only* see the inside of a jail cell; they've maliciously, malevolently, sadistically hurt too many people under the rubric of prohibition for prohibition to end amicably. That's why they are getting so shrill and hysterical. They see the future's coming...and it doesn't include them.
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Comment #17 posted by jose melendez on May 25, 2005 at 06:29:11 PT
sin free meds A trial to determine whether cannabis-based medicines can reduce disability in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) has been funded by the Medical Research Council, UK, (MRC). The MRC has awarded £2 million to fund the CUPID study (Cannabinoid Use in Progressive Inflammatory brain Disease) which will be led by Professor John Zajicek of the Peninsula Medical School and Derriford Hospital, in collaboration with Professor Alan Thompson at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery (part of University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust) and Institute of Neurology, University College London. The three-year CUPID study, which is due to begin later this year, will recruit 500 patients with progressive MS from neurology centres across the UK. The trial will evaluate whether the principal active compound found in cannabis, delta9-THC, might slow the development of disability. The research will follow on from a previous trial carried out by the same team, called Cannabinoids in MS (CAMS), which focused on testing the symptomatic benefit from cannabinoids over a 15-week and 12-month period. Whilst the CAMS study was taking place, experimental evidence came to light to suggest that delta9-THC, a drug that was being used in the CAMS study, may have the potential to protect nerve cells. 
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Comment #16 posted by ekim on May 24, 2005 at 21:06:51 PT
FoM i cant help it :)
If anyone wants to do something to end this War and is near Golden Co. Copy some of this Cellulose for Ethanol info as Golden is the Home of the Nat'l Renewable Energy Lab or NERL where for years the study of energy crops and the making of Cellulose Ethanol has been taking place. And see Howard speak if you can not make that event see a event near you as there are many reasons to end this War and Ethanol is only one of them find your pet one. June 1- 05 Evergreen Rotary 06:00 PM Howard Wooldridge Golden Colorado USA 
 Never fading in his desire to get out the truth about the failure of drug prohbition is Board Member Howard Wooldridge as he meets for dinner and discussion with members of the Evergreen Rotary. To: "DRShow" 
Sent: Thursday, April 21, 2005 11:08 AM
Subject: converting cellulosic biomass to ethanolDear Diane,
 Here is some info on the Ethanol from cellulose that James Woosley was
talking about. Mr. Woosley is also the top lobbyist for the Hemp growers in
the USA.
Thank you for all you are doing.
Mike DooleyThis is a pdf overview of NREL/Genencor work from 2003. is an NREL Press release about Genencor/NREL winning a Top 100 R&D
award in 2004. is a lot more information available with a simple web search. Google
"NREL genencor" for starters and review the results listing.I think you could get more specific information if you called NREL itself.
NREL Public Affairs: (303) 275-4090.
Cargill Dow names Genencor its enzyme partner for a biorefinery project Date
Posted: 9/8/2003PALO ALTO, Calif., Sept. 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Genencor International,
Inc. (NASDAQ:GCOR) today announced that it has been named by Cargill Dow LLC
as its development partner to create advanced enzyme systems for a biomass
project supported by the U.S. Department of Energy. The project is a
significant step toward advancing the biorefinery concept to ultimately
reduce dependence on fossil carbon sources, lower greenhouse gas emissions
and stimulate rural economies."Cargill Dow is a leader in the renewable bioplastics industry," said
Jean-Jacques Bienaime, chief executive officer and president of Genencor.
"This collaboration strives to make an important contribution to integrating
the production of biomass derived fuels, power, chemicals and other
products."Advancing the commercialization of biorefineries has been a stated goal of
the U.S. Department of Energy for a number of years. To take best advantage
of their commercial potential, biorefineries must be able to use the
non-food portions of food crops and other low-cost biomass to produce fuel
and chemicals, just as an oil refinery uses fossil fuel to produce a wide
range of products. The Cargill Dow project will use corn stalks and other
agricultural materials as a source of renewable carbon for the production of
lactic acid and biologically derived plastics."The main stumbling block to the development of commercial biorefineries has
been the availability of low-cost sugars," said Thomas J. Pekich, group vice
president, Bioproducts, of Genencor. "Our progress in solving this tough
technical problem has been steady and is now ready to be deployed on a pilot
scale."Genencor will leverage its enzyme expertise developed during a three-year,
$17 million biomass-to-ethanol program with the Department of Energy and the
National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Genencor announced in April it met and
exceeded the project's goal of developing a new generation of enzyme systems
that could economically convert low-cost biomass -- e.g., corn stover,
wheat, rice straw, sugar cane bagasse -- into fermentable sugars for
conversion into bioethanol and other chemicals."Our mission is to turn annually renewable resources into consumer products
with minimal impact on the environment," said Pat Gruber, vice president and
chief technology officer for Cargill Dow. "We are committed to developing
technology that can make large-scale biomass conversion possible and by
working with Genencor we believe this technology can be developed sooner
rather than later."About GenencorGenencor is a diversified biotechnology company that develops and delivers
innovative products and services into the health care, agri-processing,
industrial and consumer markets. Using an integrated set of technology
platforms, Genencor's products deliver innovative and sustainable solutions
to many of the problems of everyday life.Genencor traces its history to 1982 and has grown to become a leading
biotechnology company, with over $350 million in year 2002 annual revenues.
Genencor has principal offices in Palo Alto, California; Rochester, New
York; and Leiden, the Netherlands.----More on Genencor
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Comment #15 posted by FoM on May 24, 2005 at 20:07:28 PT
I can't answer your question but you spelled sy-ki-a-trist the way it should be spelled. LOL! 
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Comment #14 posted by ekim on May 24, 2005 at 19:56:09 PT
does anyone know what Andrew Weil says on EFAs
today on Diane Rehm on NPR from Amr. U in DC.
she had on a sy-ki-a-trist on talking about depression.
He mentioned that he treated those who had access to fish oil -- but did not say as to what extent the brain needs EFA and how it worked on those who had access to fish oil; to those who did not.i sent a email in to the show and asked about what the Doc said about some of the studies in depression have shown defective and smaller brain matter in altopys of know people who suffered from this. i wanted to know if EFA deficiency could cause the brain to look that way or what happens to the brain that does not have EFA in it as to myunderstanding the only way that the body can get some of these acids is think itinto itsself. it only stands to reason that we need this oil to be whole, some are near the water some are in the desert but it has all be taked care of for us. together we will leave the planet to the next at least how we found it maybe help raise the respect for all a little higher.and no Diane did not get to my email -- it was pretty late in to the show. you know not far from me Otsego has a large corragated board -- card board factory that is up for sale that will be the last in the little town on the Kal River. now about 25 miles to the South in Kalamazoo there is WMU Western Michigan Univeristy with a first class Paper TECH Department. with brand new research park to boot. now would not one think that gee we have seen thousands of good paper mill jobs leave this State why not go see whats shaken in Canada and see if we can save this cardboard mill by growen Hemp to use instead of the more expensive and long growing trees now used. We have good farm land and we need more energy and fiber and food crops and we need it now.
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Comment #13 posted by FoM on May 24, 2005 at 19:55:41 PT
Ah yes the times they are a changin'Get Up, Stand Up, stand up for your right Get Up, Stand Up, don't give up the fight
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Comment #12 posted by afterburner on May 24, 2005 at 19:45:33 PT
The Winds of Change
'Free up the weed' - Gov't chided for failure to act on ganja recommendations,
published: Friday | May 20, 2005,
Trudy Simpson, Staff Reporter 'Babylon'-ganja battle, 
published: Sunday | May 22, 2005, 
Perry Henzell, Contributor, Natty, Ride!
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Comment #11 posted by jose melendez on May 24, 2005 at 19:21:36 PT
medi sin?
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on May 24, 2005 at 18:48:40 PT
That is a very interesting article. I worry about my Rott. He will be 5 this late summer. He is way oversized and out of the standard and I can tell he will have arthritis as he gets older. I sure wish we could get medicine for our pets if they need it like that Doberman was able to have. It's a down right sin that we can't.
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Comment #9 posted by jose melendez on May 24, 2005 at 18:41:46 PT
Cheech and chong medicine, for dogs? 
I, chihuahua:Arthritic Doberman can dig for gophers again thanks to cannabis oil
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Comment #8 posted by OverwhelmSam on May 24, 2005 at 15:11:20 PT
Reason Is Finally Filtering Through The Non-Sense
Ahhh, the Trojan Horse fraud takes a hit. The Drug Czar's assertion that Medical Marijuana is just a guise for legalizing marijuana for recreational use is faltering.Their real fear is that marijuana prohibition will become all but impossible to enforce if marijuana is legalized for medical use. Hell, everbody who has any kind of disease, condition, or injury will have some in the medicine cabinet - kind of like aspirin. In my opinion, they're right. Might as well legalize it if the Supreme Court rules for states rights. Overwhelm Uncle Sam
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Comment #7 posted by ekim on May 24, 2005 at 14:27:28 PT
UPN, TV-14 sitcom 'Bad Girl's Guide' 
UPN, TV-14 sitcom 'Bad Girl's Guide' goes to pot--will others follow? 9:30 tonight.was the heading of the Kal Gazette today 24 05 on page D8.stars Jenny McCarthy -Marcelle Larice-Christina Moore.
excerpts.Three girls live together, Although "Girl's" is shocking for a network sitcom, it seems part of a rising tide of defiant frankness about pot and its continued popularity and illegality. For all of the public piety and "just say no" admonitions of the past 30 years, we may just be entering a new age of drug comedy. Are young viewers embracing a pro-drug aesthetic, or merely reacting to the hypocrisy of today's prohibitionists, many of whom were baby boomers who did their share of inhaling?
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on May 24, 2005 at 13:35:00 PT
Just a Comment
I am looking forward to when the news picks up again. I get tired of looking for news more then when I'm busy posting articles. Even the e-mail groups I get aren't busy. I really believe most of the regular people who post here on CNews are doing what I'm doing and just waiting for the Raich decision. I know I am only interested in that case right now. We've waiting a long time and I know many people are anxious like I am. Hopefully it will be good news but I'm prepared that it might not be.
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Comment #5 posted by jose melendez on May 24, 2005 at 13:17:11 PT
Drug War IS Crime!
Yes, indeed.Historical evidence: Tobacco smoking inspired only harmful uses of Cannabis!
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Comment #4 posted by Toker00 on May 24, 2005 at 09:51:20 PT

This is what we have been waiting for...
truth in journalism and now is the time to really start pouring it on. I agree with Jose. T-shirts, bumper stickers,(from an earlier post on another article), any and all activism must be kicked up to maximum effort.I just can't believe how relevant Ghandi is right now. First they laugh at you. Then they ignore you. Then they fight you. Then you win! Peace. 
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on May 24, 2005 at 08:35:16 PT

I'm impressed too!
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Comment #1 posted by dongenero on May 24, 2005 at 08:26:22 PT

Joe Baker- Daily News Staff
Nicely said.
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