City Ponders New Medical Marijuana Plan

City Ponders New Medical Marijuana Plan
Posted by CN Staff on October 21, 2005 at 07:27:55 PT
By Jessica Portner, Knight Ridder Newspapers
Source: KRT 
Mountain View, Calif. -- An elderly woman waits at her local pharmacy to pick up her arthritis drugs behind a mom fetching her son's ADHD medication. Imagine a cancer or AIDS patient joining that line to fill his prescription for medicinal marijuana.The city of Mountain View is exploring the novel idea of allowing pharmacists to dispense medicinal marijuana as readily as Viagra or Vicodin. Pharmacist Nori Yabumoto, for one, said he thinks that scenario makes sense.
"All pharmacists are in a field to help people who are sick," said Yabumoto, who has owned the Economed Pharmacy next to El Camino Hospital in Mountain View for 27 years. "I wish they would let the professionals take care of it."Drug stores in the Netherlands distribute medicinal marijuana, and Canada plans next year to launch a pilot program with government-certified pot. But the idea is against federal law in the United States - even though California voters in 1996 gave certain patients the right to use medicinal cannabis with a doctor's prescription through Proposition 215.Last week, a divided Mountain View City Council voted to study the mechanics and legalities of making the city's drug stores medicinal marijuana dispensaries. Some members of the city council worried it would unleash abuse of the system and create tussles with the federal government. Mayor Matt Neely and others were moved, however, by the stories of people such as Jonathan Lustig, a Mountain View resident who has to travel to Oakland pot clubs to pick up the marijuana he is prescribed to ease searing migraines and stomach pain because no local centers exist.There are no marijuana clubs in Santa Clara or San Mateo counties. Elaine Costello, Mountain View's planning director, said that in theory, pharmacies could be a legitimate venue for distributing the pain-numbing, nausea-relieving drug.Mountain View zoning officials have said the city may be able to issue pharmacies "conditional use" zoning permits, which allow businesses to open under special conditions.Regulating such dispensaries has emerged as legally precarious turf, especially in California, which, with more than 160 marijuana centers statewide, is the epicenter of pot clubs. State law authorizes patients to use medicinal marijuana if they have certain diseases, including cancer, AIDS, glaucoma, arthritis or migraines. But a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in June said that state laws did not protect medicinal marijuana users from federal prosecution."It's plain and simple: federal law prohibits it," said Luke Macaulay, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's office in San Francisco.And that has big chain drug stores expressing reservations."Generally our policy is that we will carry or make available any medication that is approved by the federal Food and Drug Administration," said Michael Polzin, spokesman for Walgreens in Deerfield, Ill. "I don't know how this would fit into that."Like most pharmacies, Economed already dispenses controlled substances such as methadone, percocet and oxycodone, which is similar to morphine. Yabumoto sees the legal pitfalls of legitimizing the practice of dispensing medicinal marijuana and isn't interested in challenging federal law. But if the California Board of Pharmacy and federal government cleared the way, Yabumoto said he believes plenty of pharmacists would be interested in dispensing cannabis.Dispensing the prescribed substance in a licensed pharmacy is smarter than letting people sell it in private centers that could be magnets for drug dealers and other crime, he said."Pharmacies are ideal places," said Yabumoto in his store, where the shelves are lined with pain relievers and cold remedies. "We are trained to identify people who are abusing the system more than people who are out there in clubs."For now, Mountain View city officials are studying the idea and will report back in about two months.Hilary McQuie, spokeswoman for the Oakland-based Americans for Safe Access, said hundreds of ill people from Santa Clara and San Mateo counties must travel to pot clubs in San Francisco, Oakland, Hayward and Santa Cruz to get their medications.While she applauds Mountain View for studying the pharmacy approach, she said there may be better options."I would be surprised if they don't find that to be in conflict legally," she said, however. "A church might be a better sanctuary."Source: KRT (Wire)Author: Ely Portillo, Knight Ridder News ServicePublished: Friday, October 21, 2005Copyright: 2005, Knight Ridder/Tribune Information ServicesAmericans For Safe Access Medical Marijuana Archives
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Comment #25 posted by Toker00 on October 21, 2005 at 17:37:06 PT
Spoke too soon.
Except for that dam* Nancy Grace. The people she interviews don't respond to her trying to tie the "marijuana grow enterprise" as causal in the murder. Most avoid the subject of cannabis being a factor altogether. Which it is not.Wage war on peace. END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOW!
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Comment #24 posted by Toker00 on October 21, 2005 at 14:54:13 PT
The kid had a traumatic experience when he lost his sister a few years ago. Grieving can turn to self-pity, with the world to blame. Everyone knew the kid lived on the dark side. A lot of times self-pity brings suicide. A lot of times homocide. It can be the cause of alcohol and drug addiction. People who grieve too long end up feeling sorry for themselves, and don't realize you can't do that but for a very short time, without falling down a deep dark hole of depression. If they don't reverse their fall, hitting bottom is inevitable, and can wind up in death and destruction. Grieve, but don't ever continue feeling sorry for yourself.As for Cannabis being a factor in this incident, forget it. I was glad to see CNN and other news sources not dwell on the grow-op part. They even left cannabis out of a later report, saying the boy had problems other than drugs. The DEAth squad is the only ones who will be riding this horse, after beating it to DEAth first. The public will reject anyone trying to link this death to cannabis.Wage peace on war. END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOW! 
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Comment #23 posted by mars on October 21, 2005 at 12:20:28 PT:
why pharmacies can't dispense MMJ
Because sb420 says only non-profit patient collectives can dispense medical cannabis. but besides our state law, there are logistical problems - such as how a pharmacist would obtain medical cannabis, how many strains would they offer, would they also offer edibles, tinctures etc.. also how would a pharmacist be able to counsel MMJ patients unless he is a patient/user himself? how would a pharmacist be knowledgeable enough to inspect cannabis to ensure it is pest-free, mold-free, and medical grade? how do we know they just wouldn't buy the cheapest grade out there to ensure profits? these are things that patients rely on dispensary staff to do, who are patients also. pharmacies are not capable of dealing with these issues.let patients run dispensaries and collectives.
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Comment #22 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 11:37:29 PT
EJ I Agree Once Again
Scars from being in war and poverty can cause very serious problems. I think that's what happened in my mother's family. I don't think we have anything to worry about because of this boy doing what he did either but it sure makes me wonder why he did what he did.
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Comment #21 posted by E_Johnson on October 21, 2005 at 11:31:06 PT
What made my family break down FoM
Between fighting in WWII and surviving the Depression, my father had a lot of emotional scars that weren't appreciated or understood or taken care of in American culture of the times, which was all about sucking up your pain and keeping it inside and not admitting it was there.Plus in the culture of the times, masculine displays of aggression in the home weren't seen as a bad thing. It was believed back then that children were resilient and war stopped hurting people after the fighting was over.I think domestic violence and alcoholism follow war the way fleas follow dogs.I don't know about this kid in the news, what made him so sick. It could have been his family, it could have been just something went wrong in his brain when the DNA of his parents combined or I don't know -- but I don't tajke it personally and I don't think this community has anything to answer for or worry about from it.
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Comment #20 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 11:29:35 PT
I remember a tv ad that said: Without chemistry life would be impossible.Good things in the beginning that seem to help can turn right around and bite us in the back. I believe that is happening.
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Comment #19 posted by goneposthole on October 21, 2005 at 11:24:58 PT
very interesting, but I don't like it
There is no need to wonder why people are getting so out of it."One of the reasons that things are so weird, I betcha, is the sheer number of drugs, hormones, antibiotics, vaccines, and God only knows what all in our blood these days.One of them is (according to the Harper's Index) the miracle of Teflon, which is a non-stick coating put on cookware. The problem with Teflon is that you have to use special plastic utensils when you use a pot or pan coated with Teflon, as metal spoons, whisks, ladles and tongs will scratch away the Teflon. But when you are cooking, there are usually lots and lots of things going on, and sometimes things are boiling over and your spouse is yelling at you to do something about it and you don't want to hunt up the one damned plastic spoon, ("Has anybody seen the damned plastic spoon?"), so you grab a metal spoon, which is real handy because they are all over the damn kitchen, . So you stir with the metal spoon, or dip with the metal ladle, and you inevitably scratch off the Teflon into the food you are cooking.Well, the actual Harper's Index item was "Percentage of U.S. children who now have one of these nonbiodegradable chemicals in their bloodstreams: 96." I am not sure what effect Teflon has on the human body, if any, but I don't like the adjective "nonbiodegradable" in there, especially when this is only ONE of many non-stick products made with perfluorochemicals that were "introduced" in 1956.So, the simplest test to see if perfluorochemicals in our bloodstreams is bad for us is to see if there are any differences between pre-1956 people and post-1956 people. And I say, yes, I think I see a LOT of differences! Especially if you get your facts from remembering something you read a longtime ago, or by merely looking at old television shows, which is so handy and entertaining. As an example of the former, I remember reading once that the biggest problem faced by teachers in 1956 or so was the scourge of children chewing gum. That was their number one problem!As an example of the latter, I will leave that up to you to perform as your research project this year, and I think that body piercing ought to be prominent in your report.And when you add in the sheer tonnage of other chemicals that are in our blood from our astonishing American intake of prescription drugs, legal drugs, (including alcohol, which is a literal poison, which is why it can be used as a freaking disinfectant, for crying out loud!), all the whole panoply of food additives and preservatives, illegal drugs, things used as drugs (sniffing refrigerant, huffing gasoline, etc) it's a wonder that we don't actually drool when we act so stupid." Cannabis looks better all of the time.
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Comment #18 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 11:14:48 PT
He Slipped Thru The Cracks
I know that these children that I still love but don't see anymore were raised by the best parents. Yes they were very wealthy but the parents were sort of hippies in the beginning of their relationship back in the 70s. I thought it was so cool to see pictures of their early days and the value structure they had and where their life lead them. They own a company that builds bridges all over the U.S.
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Comment #17 posted by siege on October 21, 2005 at 11:12:41 PT
Opinion: yes every one has one 
This sound's like the smoking gun of the FED, DEA, we can't get it one way, by God we will some other way we order grow equipment to their house, then kill some one. And then frame someone!!!! what type of a lawyer was he did he represent the cannabis movement... DEAth can make the cannabis people LOOK Bad. They do it to every one eles so way not the Cannabis Movement.
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Comment #16 posted by Max Flowers on October 21, 2005 at 11:11:06 PT
I was wrong about capital murder, he can't get the death penalty. If tried as an adult he can get 25-life, if as a juvenile, he's out on his 25th birthday. They need to try him as an adult in my opinion. If you're grown-up enough to bash someone's head in, you're grown-up enough to take the adult penalty.
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Comment #15 posted by Hope on October 21, 2005 at 11:07:05 PT
Stolen credit cards...
Sounds like a young monster that needed some serious attention long before he murdered that poor woman.No I realize that coming from wealth or poverty doesn't cause that sort of monster type person to exist. The world is all too full of that type of person. We all have to be on the look out for and careful of them all the time.
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Comment #14 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 11:02:21 PT
He was buying it with stolen credit cards. Rich or poor doesn't cause problems it's more then money I believe. A couple of the nicest children I ever met their family were so very rich and they were just the most polite and thoughtful children.
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Comment #13 posted by Hope on October 21, 2005 at 10:49:37 PT
Must have been an overly rich kid....
to begin with. A sixteen year old, I haven't heard that he had a job, shouldn't have enough disposable income to buy a grow outfit on his own in the first place. If he was a must keep in mind the quality of the brain cells being nourished. A brain "squirming like a toad" with evil and "cunning plans" based on greed and the "love of money", occurs to me when I think about the kid. 
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Comment #12 posted by Hope on October 21, 2005 at 10:43:35 PT
We've all known people who did not smoke or use cannabis who wanted in on the "money tree" aspect of the plant's prohibition.
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Comment #11 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 10:41:16 PT
Max Flowers 
My heart sank too. Why was a 16 year old even thinking of buying lights and growing marijuana? How did he even learn about how to grow it? Where was he going to grow marijuana? Where were his parents? Didn't they know about this idea? I'm at a loss. I knew where my son was all the time.
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Comment #10 posted by Max Flowers on October 21, 2005 at 10:33:50 PT
Bay area insanity
As a bay area resident I find these latest news stories very troubling. I used to live in L.A. and thought that it had the monopoly on insane, bizarre crime. It now seems the hip and groovy bay area is trying to compete.My heart really sank when I heard the thing about the kid who killed the lawyer's wife ordering grow equipment to their house. Why did it have to involve cannabis in any way? Another black mark that gives people the wrong idea. And what kind of moron/maniac is this kid? How could he think that ordering stuff to someone else's house is a smart idea, and how did he think killing the person who was home was the best way to get out of it? I mean, where are the brain cells? If he had just been caught there he would have only had trespassing and maybe credit card fraud charges, maybe not. Those would very likely have been juvenile charges. Now he's got capital murder, tried as an adult.The lady who threw her kids in the water is obviously very sick. I hope they take that fully into account.
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 08:53:03 PT
It's a Sign of The Times
I believe the breakdown of the family is a contributing factor to the problems we see now. We talked about how the ads in Colorado brought back memories that we would much rather not remember but my home life was better then many people's home lives nowadays. Last night I made a good simple meatloaf dinner. The aroma permeated the house and I got a nice content feeling. Our neighbor who rents our one house called this morning and said to my husband that he looked out his sliding glass door and looked at our house and said with the old tractor and the smoke coming out the chimney that our place looks like a Norman Rockwell painting. We have lost a lot in society.
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 08:45:53 PT
We Sure Are EJ
I find the news can get very depressing so I turn it off and turn on Neil. I use music as an escape from the chaos that surrounds us. It's my therapy.
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Comment #7 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 08:41:47 PT
Mentally Ill
Some people need medicine. I wish mental illness wasn't a problem but it is.
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Comment #6 posted by E_Johnson on October 21, 2005 at 08:40:17 PT
And FoM
We're growing between the cracks.
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Comment #5 posted by E_Johnson on October 21, 2005 at 08:39:08 PT
FoM she's psychotic 
I read that the woman on the bridge had paranoid schizophrenia and stopped taking her medication about a month before he did it. She told people she was going to do it and nobody believed her. It's very dangerous to let someone take care of children who is psychotic and not compliant with her medication schedule. I know a lot of people here don't want psychotics forced to take medication but when someone psychotic decides they don't want medication any more, this is one of the things that can happen.
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 08:36:44 PT
EJ We're On The Same Wavelength Again
The modern world is cracking apart now.
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on October 21, 2005 at 08:30:31 PT
This federal problem is a real problem. I hope something changes. The news is crazy. Actually it seems people are going crazy. That 16 year old that thought his grow equipment he ordered was delivered to the house where he killed her. Where does a 16 year old get the idea of growing marijuana? Where are the parents? Then a mom throws here 3 kids in the water. I often wonder if they are on legal prescription drugs. They could be a contributing factor. I find the news really hard to handle. I did laugh when I saw on the news they will be selling mug shot t-shirts of that nasty republican dude. 
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Comment #2 posted by E_Johnson on October 21, 2005 at 08:24:03 PT
Why pharmacies are not ideal places
Their shelves are lined with pills, yes, but cannabis is a plant product and one of the special things about cannabis is having this relationship with the plant that is not a modern thing, it's not an anonymous thing, it's not a manufactured thing, it's a natural, old-fashioned thing that puts you in touch with your ancestors from thousands of years ago.It's a culture and a relationship, it's not some sterile, anonymous molecule put into existence in a sterile anonymous manner by sterile, anonymous people in a sterile, anonymous factory.It's a culture of healing and compassion that you know has been fed by the blood of true patriots.People have defeated fear and found their own more noble, courageous selves in defense of this medicinal culture.The modern world is cracking apart now. Why should people have faith that their medicine is best handled according to the norms of a cracking apart world?
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Comment #1 posted by goneposthole on October 21, 2005 at 08:21:59 PT
So that's how it is
"It's plain and simple: federal law prohibits it""Avoid any action with an unacceptable outcome" killed 140,000 people. Apparently, that is an acceptable outcome.Cannabis doesn't directly kill people, ergo, it is unacceptable.Murphy's law in action.
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