The Freedom To Use Medical Marijuana 

The Freedom To Use Medical Marijuana 
Posted by CN Staff on July 03, 2006 at 22:59:18 PT
By Kenneth Michael White 
Source: Frontiers of Freedom
USA -- Proponents of medical marijuana prohibition argue that the medical use of marijuana is too dangerous to allow because it is addictive. Putting aside the fact that doctors safely recommend much more dangerous substances than medical marijuana, like cocaine and morphine, consider for the sake of argument that prohibitionists are correct in their assertion that medical marijuana is addictive. So what? Consider how a free country generally handles addictions.
Coffee is addictive. Every morning, all across America, there are people (many of them idling in their cars at a drive-thru) getting java. What happens when these people do not get their coffee on time and as anticipated? Other than a little irritability, not much happens. People seem trustable enough to drink coffee, even though that behavior often results in a life-long addiction.Tobacco is addictive. Every moment of every day and night, all across America, there are people smoking tobacco. What happens when these “smokers” do not get to light up their cigarettes on time and as anticipated? Other than a lot of irritability, not much happens. Despite the enormous number of tobacco-related deaths each year, adults are nevertheless trusted to moderate their private use of tobacco.Alcohol is addictive. Usually in the evening, but not always, there are people all across America drinking alcohol. What happens when these people do not get their alcohol on time and as anticipated? Well, depending upon the individual’s level of past alcohol use, there are varying degrees of negative consequences associated with alcohol withdrawal, e.g., headache, loss of appetite, and even seizures in extreme cases. Despite the enormous number of alcohol-related deaths each year, adults are nevertheless trusted to moderate their private use of alcohol.If Americans can be trusted to get “wired,” “buzzed,” and/or “drunk,” then they can be trusted to use medical marijuana while under the supervision of a licensed physician. Compared to coffee, tobacco, and alcohol, medical marijuana is an innocuous substance. There has never been a single death associated with the use of medical marijuana. Never. The most dangerous side effect of medical marijuana is the criminal law, but the benefits of the plant are too long to list for some people suffering from cancer, AIDS, MS, and other chronic diseases or ailments. Why can’t these people have the choice of a medicine that can be grown practically for free?Cannabis is more closely related to willow bark (aspirin) than the poppy plant (heroin), yet the Federal Government currently classifies medical marijuana along with heroin because it thinks medical marijuana is a joke. It is not a joke. Free countries should not punish people for following the advice of their doctor. It is past time for Congress to recognize the obvious: there is a distinction between the use of marijuana and the abuse of marijuana. How can the ordinary, reasonable, and prudent person identify this difference? Easy: just ask your doctor for the answer.Kenneth Michael White is an attorney and the author of “The Beginning of Today: The Marihuana Tax Act of 1937” and “Buck” (both by PublishAmerica 2004). For more information visit: Source: Frontiers of Freedom (VA)Author: Kenneth Michael White Published: July 04, 2006Copyright: 2006 Frontiers of Freedom Website: opeds Related Articles:Marijuana From the Patient’s Point of View OKs Medical Pot Prosecutions Report Calls Drug Policies a Waste
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Comment #23 posted by afterburner on July 05, 2006 at 07:21:33 PT
Toker00 #5 & whig #18
Good flag ideas. I once made a hand-sewn Peace Flag on sky blue with a large peace sign in the middle and a dove descending from above on one side. Consider silk screen to get the many colors and shapes.Peace, my brothers (and my sisters too)
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Comment #22 posted by afterburner on July 05, 2006 at 07:12:42 PT
Toker00 #7 & FoM #8
When I read of the death of Lynn Zimmer and FoM's tribute, I got a lump in my throat and my eyes welled up. Thank you Lynn for all you did. We will remember all the fallen heroes in this cruel War on Medicine.
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Comment #21 posted by mayan on July 04, 2006 at 23:30:39 PT
Lynn Zimmer
R.I.P.Our cause will feel such a loss. This world will feel the loss.
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Comment #20 posted by whig on July 04, 2006 at 21:12:51 PT
I thought of a Green Cross too, but I know there are people using that name already and I also don't think the cross is the element of the Christ that I'd emphasize, that's the part that really bothers me about the mainstream Christian churches -- they are all about death and crucifixes.Something Bill Hicks once said, about people remembering JFK by putting rifles on their lapels. Wonder if Jackie O would appreciate that.
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Comment #19 posted by Toker00 on July 04, 2006 at 20:47:16 PT
I like that, too, whig.
I really do have the (canvas type) fabric to do this. Dyeing the colors will be easy. My brother-in-law is a Professor of Fine Arts, a GRAND set designer, and can sew anything. I could make a couple of different designs. Might be difficult to "dye" a field of cannabis, but there should be some way of doing it. I'll ask my b-i-l. How about The Dove of Peace carrying a few big, sticky buds in his claws, a red cross on his breast plate, leaving the Hands of God, and flying toward the great Blue planet Earth?Ok. I'm baked. Thank you God for Cannabis. Watch over Jerry and Linda until we can send them more help and hope. Wage peace on war. END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOW! 
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Comment #18 posted by whig on July 04, 2006 at 13:09:04 PT
Here's a flag design I would like:A green field, with a white dove of peace.
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Comment #17 posted by Sukoi on July 04, 2006 at 13:06:44 PT
Right you are, I missed that the first time that I read it. kind of makes you wonder which part they screwed up huh?
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Comment #16 posted by lombar on July 04, 2006 at 11:50:37 PT
Take another look..The active substance in cannabis, thujone, creates Atrial natriuretic peptides which stimulates the consequent reactions in the body.Whoever wrote this mixed up wormwood(absinthe) with cannabis. Since this is kind of pivotal to the story, the whole thing makes no sense. Would not just growing industrial hemp do the same thing? Lots of pollen from hemp would be 'in the air'. Most wild strains of cannabis would eventually cross with the hemp.By the time something like this is useful, indoor growing techniques will be perfec.. err.. hey, whaddya know, that's almost true now..
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Comment #15 posted by FoM on July 04, 2006 at 11:19:17 PT
LWW: For Those Who Might Want To Participate
Joan's Web Site: Documentary To Be Filmed During Tour
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Comment #14 posted by Sukoi on July 04, 2006 at 09:57:11 PT
OT: Look out for those Russians...
Russian Scientists Claim to Invent Drug-Free Cannabis, Suggest it to Replace Wild Cannabis Worldwide Scientists from the Russian city of St. Petersburg have announced they had managed to develop a new, drug-free variant of cannabis which, if grown on industrial level, would cross with wild growing hemp end eventually force it out of existence. Russia’s Interfax news agency quoted Sergei Grigoryev of the Russian Plant Institute as saying that the amount of psychotropic substance in the new variant of cannabis is practically zero. When the new plant is crossed with the wild growing hemp the amount of psychotropic substance in the latter will gradually become less and less. If Russian hemp is grown on industrial level, it could even force the cannabis that is used for making hashish and marijuana out of existence. The active substance in cannabis, thujone, creates Atrial natriuretic peptides which stimulates the consequent reactions in the body. The medical controversy of cannabis lies in the potential harmful versus helpful effects. As a professionally administered drug, cannabis has been used in alleviating pain for cancer patients, helps to stimulate appetites of HIV afflicted persons, relieving inflammation of the gastro-intestinal tract, and is known to open up the blood vessels improving circulation among its various proclaimed benefits. In conjunction with its benefits are the risks it subjects users to, among those being muscular attributes given to schizophrenics, muscular incoordination, dizziness, difficulty concentrating, confusion, difficulty walking, dysarthria, dry mouth, dysphagia, blurred vision, and vomiting most of all, as with opening up the blood vessels can produce the condition of excess blood volume which results in comas and cardiac arrest, leading to death. The scientist went on to say that hemp is one of the oldest agricultural plants with 10 thousand-year history and at present it is “unjustly” associated with drugs like marijuana. Hemp must be used to make traditional fibers and oil, Grigoriyev said. Thread about it here:
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Comment #13 posted by lombar on July 04, 2006 at 09:47:20 PT
 Pragmatism versus dogma in Maastricht
While new plans in the Netherlands to further liberalise its drug policies have met with great support within the country, its neighbours look on in horror
Do coffeshops works? (Michiel Schipper)
Three years as the mayor of Maastricht have changed the attitude of Gerd Leers towards liberal drug policies. Once a strong supporter of prohibition, he recently proposed the creation of ‘cannabis boulevards’ in border areas outside the city to counter problems linked with cross-border drug tourism. He is also in favour of the regulation of the sale of cannabis to coffeeshops. This is a direct move to counter a flourishing black-market, for while selling cannabis may be legal in the Netherlands, its production is definitely not.The Maastricht coffee shops attract around 1.5 million drug tourists every year, mostly from Germany, Belgium and France. These young people are drawn to buying their dope in the Netherlands like moths to a flame. The enormous demand created by these tourists causes serious disturbances in the city centre, and more importantly, causes an increase in drug related crime.Flawed pragmatismSince 1976, the Dutch government has decriminalised the distribution and use of cannabis in so-called coffeeshops. These cafes are authorised to sell up to five grams of cannabis to people over 18. The idea behind this policy is the pragmatic belief that a separation between soft and hard drugs is desirable. It is thought that it’s far better for a cannabis user to get his weed in a safe, legal and friendly environment than in the hard and criminal world of street dealing, where you are only one step away from harder drugs.The figures support this policy. In the Netherlands, the only Western country where cannabis is ‘legally’ sold, only 13% of its youth use the drug. According to a survey by the UNODC, in countries where possession and use is penalised a bigger percentage of youth use cannabis: Belgium, Ireland, USA (17%), UK (20%) and France (22%). In addition, in the Netherlands only 3 out of every 1000 people in the age range of 15-64 are addicted to hard drugs. In Luxembourg, the UK, Italy, Portugal and Denmark it’s 7 to 10 per 1000. In the Netherlands there is only one drug fatality on every 100,000 people, while in Denmark it’s five and Norway it’s eight per 100,000.In Maastricht, the daily influx of nearly 4,000 drug tourists creates an additional demand (on top of the Dutch demand) for hundreds of kilos of cannabis. This cannabis needs to be produced, and it is here that the flaw in the Dutch model comes to light. The bizarre thing is, cannabis is allowed to be sold, but coffee shops have no place to legally purchase their stock. The ‘front door’ of the coffee shop is regulated but the ‘back door’ is left unguarded. “It is like telling a baker that he can sell bread but is not allowed to buy flour,” Leers told AFP recently. {clipped}
 Pragmatism versus dogma in Maastrich
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Comment #12 posted by FoM on July 04, 2006 at 08:41:14 PT
You're right it is hot and humid down there. I have seen Bush sweat like that before. Alcohol and a stimulant can do that to a person. 
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Comment #11 posted by Dankhank on July 04, 2006 at 08:34:08 PT
Adios Lynn ...
I, too, mourn the passing of one who insists on truth.Lynn, we would that you lie in green fields for eternity ...Peace to you and all who educate ...--------------------------Sweating like that is endemic of the southeast, 'specially Fla, Ga, SC, and DC. The weather in DC in summer caused some nations to pay diplomats a hardship allowance for being stationed in DC during the summer.No excuse for Bush, though, he has many reasons to sweat.
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Comment #10 posted by Treeanna on July 04, 2006 at 08:18:18 PT
MJ Safer than you think
Go read this article about a study regarding the use of "ganja" while pregnant. consider the effects of cigs and/or booze during pregnancy.
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on July 04, 2006 at 07:55:55 PT
We aren't watching the news today. We have the news on but the sound muted and we are listening to the protest songs that Neil put on his web site of artists like museman. That is so nice of him to do. I want museman to submit a song to Neil when he gets back from the Rainbow Gathering. I want his music on Neil's web site too. The Freedom of Speech Tour is what keeps me going this summer. As long as we can speak out I will hold on to hope.PS: We saw Bush talking but didn't want to hear what he was saying but when he turned around he was sweating badly. His whole back was soaked. I have only seen sweating like that when a person is doing drugs and drinking. I wonder if anyone else noticed it.
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on July 04, 2006 at 07:36:43 PT
Rest in Peace Lynn Zimmer
When I read of the passing of an activist for our cause or any worthy cause it lights a fire in me to continue. We only have one life to live and we will be remembered for what we do or we might not be remembered at all. There is nothing more important in life that do do good work and Lynn did. Thank you Lynn Zimmer.
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Comment #7 posted by Toker00 on July 04, 2006 at 07:23:45 PT
With sadness, I share.
July 3, 2006Dear NORML Supporters,With a heavy heart I pass on the news of the passing of a dear friend 
NORML and personal mentor: Lynn Zimmer, Ph. D.Below Ethan Nadelmann, Executive Director of the Drug Policy Alliance 
Lynn’s close friend has penned a brief obituary.The only two brief items I can add are that Lynn served on NORML’s 
of Directors from 1995-1999 and that she provided me a cherished (and
informative) gift as she came to terms with her physical ailments.Some years back I was on a live radio show for one hour in NYC taking
calls on the topic of ‘why is marijuana illegal?’ An advocate for
marijuana law reform called the show and took me to task for not
highlighting the Anslinger-DuPont-Mellon 'conspiracy' as the root cause 
marijuana’s long and tortured prohibition. While obviously supportive 
marijuana law reform I disagreed with the caller and cited a number of
state and municipal anti-marijuana statutes that well pre-date the
incorrect, but oft-cited Anslinger-DuPont-Mellon conspiracy era.A few days later I received a letter from Lynn indicating that she’d
listened to show and asked me to stop by her home the next time I was 
I had such an occasion to be in NYC a few weeks later and Lynn gave me 
great, wonderfully framed under glass full-page newspaper article from
1929 (from Greenwich Village, NYC). The article entitled ‘A Home-Grown 
Drug That Drives Its Victims Mad’ is a terrific and breathtaking 
of reefer madness and Lynn wanted NORML’s archives to have a prime 
of pre-federal prohibition (1937) propaganda.The historical article is on display at NORML’s national office in
Washington, DC.If you've not read 'Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts' (by Lynn Zimmer,
Ph.D and John Morgan, M.D.), in honor of Lynn and for your own
edification, get a copy ASAP for your personal library.The board, staff and membership of NORML owe Lynn Zimmer, a notable and
articulate truth teller, great thanks and we wish the best to her 
and loved ones.Regards,Allen St. Pierre
Executive Director
NORML/NORML Foundation
Washington, DC
Lynn Zimmer, Ph.D died July 2nd at the age of 59.
Professor Zimmer, a sociologist at Queens College, City University of 
York, was widely regarded among both drug policy scholars and activists 
the most original thinker on drug issues in the United States. With her
friend and colleague Dr. John P. Morgan, she co-authored Marijuana 
Marijuana Facts, the leading and best-selling scholarly book on 
it has been translated and published in seven languages to date. She 
published extensively on other drug issues, including drug testing, 
education, and drugs and the media, and appeared often on radio and TV
programs.Professor Lynn Zimmer received both The Lindesmith Award for 
in the Field of Scholarship from the Drug Policy Foundation and the 
Grinspoon Award for Achievement in the Field of Marijuana Law Reform 
the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws in 2000. 
was looked to as an intellectual leader in the growing drug policy 
movement. She was a fierce critic of drug prohibition and the nation‚s
harsh drug war policies but also a keen skeptic of arguments for full
legalization. Her insights into drug use and addiction, as well as the
various roles of drugs in society, were unparalleled.
Before working on drug issues, Lynn Zimmer authored Women Guarding Men, 
path breaking study of women hired as guards in men‚s prisons that
examined the painful process of transition from a segregated to an
integrated prison environment.
Lynn Zimmer was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2000. This 
took away much of her eyesight, sense of taste, and mobility but never
diminished her remarkable mind. She was a beloved teacher and friend 
She is survived by two sons, Joseph and Mark Zimmer.
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Comment #6 posted by Wayne on July 04, 2006 at 07:13:41 PT
Yeah, Hope, I don't feel like celebrating much today either. I'm not the least bit motivated to turn my TV on this morning, I know it will just make me queasy. Americans don't even know what this day means anymore. All they know is that it's a day when you're supposed to travel, spend money on gasoline, fry up 2 dozen burgers on the grill, and shoot bottle rockets at each other. No one has any idea what the soldiers in Iraq are fighting for. People say "they're fighting to protect our freedoms!". Well you know what, just because they're fighting the war over there, does NOT mean that we don't have to fight for our rights here at home. The Bush administration has carefully worded their argument this way for a reason. They want us to believe that our government will take care of us. They don't WANT us to stand up for our rights.Freedom is the responsibility of ALL OF US, not just our men and women in uniform. Anyone can threaten our rights with the flick of a wrist, whether it be a dictator 6,000 miles away, or 6,000 dictators here at home.We need to stand up and voice our concern about our rights. We need to have the courage to say unpopular things if those unpopular things also happen to be what is RIGHT.I'll leave you all with this for your 4th of July enjoyment. Webster's definition of a patriot is "One who loves, supports, and defends one's country." I think for all effects and purposes, most people have forgotten about the 'defend' part of that definition. A TRUE patriot must be willing and ready to defend his people against its government.Happy 4th everyone. God bless America, and God bless our TRUE patriots!
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Comment #5 posted by Toker00 on July 04, 2006 at 07:05:59 PT
I'm making a new flag.
It'll have Green and White stripes. It'll have eleven cannabis leaves imposed on individual Red-crosses, on a Blue background for the states where cannabis is medically legal, with thirty-nine empty spaces for the rest of the states as they join our Cannabis Nation. Red, White, Blue, and Green. The Canna/Ross flag, with respect to the lady with the nimble fingers. We will have no leaders, just as the Rainbow Family. No organization. Should we have gatherings? In the states which have cannabis medical laws? I think so. Would this not be an ultimate expression of our GOD given rights? Could they, would they, arrest 20,000+ CANNABISIANS? Even though we are the same people who were allowed (after a rough start) this weekend/week to gather in Colorado and other places across these "United" states? Cannabis cannot heal on it's own. If we are to truly Heal our Nation, with a plant of renown, then we need FIFTY medical leaves on that flag. Let's get busy! LOVE! Wage peace on war. END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOW! 
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Comment #4 posted by Christen-Mitchell on July 04, 2006 at 06:52:23 PT:
The Gateway Lie Was Long In Coming
During the House hearings in the Ways and Means Committee that led to the passing of the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937, Representative Dingell asked this question to the Commissioner of the newly created Narcotics Bureau:"I was just wondering whether the Marijuana addict graduates into heroin, an opium, or a cocaine user?Harry Anslinger's answer:"No, Sir. I have not heard of a single case of that kind. I think it is an entirely different class. The marijuana addict does not go in that direction,"Eighteen years later, in response to a similar question by Senator Price Daniel, he replied:"That is the great problem, and our great concern about the use of marijuana is that eventually, if used over a long period of time, it does lead to heroin addiction."
Hemptopia - Our Greener Future
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Comment #3 posted by mayan on July 04, 2006 at 05:14:01 PT
Hunger Strike
US stars align in anti-Iraq war hunger strike:
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Comment #2 posted by Hope on July 04, 2006 at 05:10:37 PT
The state of freedom in this country today...
makes me think that black bunting instead of red, white, and blue, might be more appropriate.Are we supposed to celebrate that we are more free than Muslim countries? Are we supposed to celebrate that we have more freedom than the Chinese? Sort of a "Yay...we don't have what we used to, and we are losing more all the time, but we have more than they do!"Runruff is in prison for a plant. Frankly I don't feel all that celebratory of freedom today.Americans are no longer safe from unreasonable search and seizure. They can no longer feel secure in their homes and papers. Let's see. Oh yeah...we still have the freedom to pay taxes!Yay! Whoop de doo.Bush isn't Stalin or Hitler! Something to celebrate I guess.I'm thankful we still have enough freedom of speech to be able to complain about it all.
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Comment #1 posted by mayan on July 04, 2006 at 04:20:18 PT
Why can’t these people have the choice of a medicine that can be grown practically for free?Because it can be grown practically for free... SHADOW OF THE SWASTIKA: The Real Reason the Government Won't Debate Medical Cannabis and Industrial Hemp Re-legalization: is more closely related to willow bark (aspirin) than the poppy plant (heroin), yet the Federal Government currently classifies medical marijuana along with heroin because it thinks medical marijuana is a joke.Actually, the government knows very well that cannabis is the real deal. By keeping us hooked on finite resources and denying us the amazingly versatile cannabis plant the greedheads have seriously hampered our ability to live sustainably and self-sufficiently, therefore keeping us from truly empowering ourselves.It's all about the money and power. Happy Independence Day, everyone! Down with tyrants!!!THE WAY OUT IS THE WAY IN...UW Instructor Defends Plan to Teach 9/11 Conspiracy
Theory in Class: Donald Downs Reconsiders, Supports Academic Freedom: presents Kevin Barrett C3KTV Interview: for 9/11 Truth: Truth About September 11th:
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