Medical Marijuana Finally Gains Ground

Medical Marijuana Finally Gains Ground
Posted by CN Staff on December 22, 2008 at 09:40:33 PT
By George Amick 
Source: Times
New Jersey -- Those who favor a sensible and compassionate approach to the use of illegal drugs in New Jersey must continually contend with a tough bunch of hard-liners at the Statehouse. It took more than a decade for them to win approval for a cautious test of programs that give intravenous drug users access to clean needles to slow the spread of HIV/AIDS and other blood-borne diseases.
And they've been trying for nearly four years to legalize the medical use of marijuana under tight restrictions for sufferers who could benefit from its use. Once again, they're butting heads with legislative drug warriors for whom any policy other than banning the stuff represents -- like the pool table Professor Hill warned the people of River City about -- "the road to degradation." Still, progress happens. Last week, the Senate Health Committee approved S119, the Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, to allow chronically ill patients who are certified by a doctor to petition the Department of Human Services to allow them to smoke marijuana as a palliative. Approved patients would receive an ID card allowing them to grow up to six marijuana plants or obtain the drug at an alternative medicine center. The bill, sponsored by Sen. Nicholas Scutari, D-Linden, cleared the committee by a 5-1 vote, with two abstentions. After hearing testimony, sometimes passionate, from both sides, the majority was persuaded that marijuana appears to have significant value for easing the suffering of victims of multiple sclerosis, cancer, HIV/AIDS and other debilitating diseases when conventional medicine doesn't work . Thirteen states, including Sarah Palin's Alaska, already authorize doctors to prescribe marijuana under specified conditions. These laws are fiercely opposed by the Bush Justice Department, which has ignored them in its zealous enforcement of the federal ban on the sale or possession of pot. The incoming Obama administration is considered likely to be much less hostile, though. What encourages advocates in New Jersey is the bipartisan nature of the effort to bring change to the state. Although Republicans tend to oppose medical marijuana -- Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean, R-Westfield, cast the sole "no" vote in the Senate committee -- it has significant GOP support, as well. Sen. Bill Baroni, R-Hamilton, who voted "yes" on S119, told The Courier-Post that he had spent the weekend before the committee meeting reading literature on both sides of the argument. "The people who are asking us to do this today, these are people who can't play piggyback with their 3-year-old," Baroni said. "These are people who get up every day and battle HIV/AIDS. They are people who wonder if their chemotherapy is going to work. I can't look at those folks and let them be perhaps the only ones who don't have the ability to have less pain." The bill's Assembly version, A804, is co-sponsored by Reed Gusciora, D-Princeton Borough, one of the most liberal members of the Legislature, and Michael Patrick Carroll, R-Morris Township, one of the most conservative.  Snipped   Complete Article: Times, The (Trenton, NJ)Author: George Amick Published: Monday, December 22, 2008 Copyright: 2008 The TimesContact: letters njtimes.comWebsite: Articles:Allow Marijuana for Medical Use in N.J. Says He Would Sign MMJ Legislation
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on December 23, 2008 at 06:57:15 PT
Thank you. Here's one from me to you.Music Box Dancer - Holdman Christmas Display 2008
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Comment #5 posted by mykeyb420 on December 22, 2008 at 20:30:13 PT
Any Elvis fans out there???
This is a kewl website that allows you to sing "Blue Xmas "with the king,,,,For free
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Comment #4 posted by E_Johnson on December 22, 2008 at 19:59:10 PT
If the Obamadmin is going to circulate this myth
My Irish is up. This story gets my Irish up because it's about journalists who are too lazy and complacent to question what they are being told.Obama's ONDCP had better not invest in this myth.If we're going to hear for the next four years that the hippies in the sixties got high on 1% THC pot, then no way can I vote for Obama in 2012. He's toast.
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Comment #3 posted by E_Johnson on December 22, 2008 at 19:45:37 PT
NYT regurgitating old potency myth" They have been doing genetic selection for years. You can see the potency keeps going up. In the 1970s, the seized marijuana had probably 1 percent or less of the active ingredient. Now, itís about 8 percent, on the average."The science reporter's name is Claudia Dreifus and you can email her in a link provided by the article.Please let's have the entire reform community teach this science reporter how the government does its marijuana potency math.
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on December 22, 2008 at 11:58:41 PT
OT: Drug Rehabilitation or Revolving Door?
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Comment #1 posted by museman on December 22, 2008 at 11:19:59 PT
Thirteen colonies rose up against the tyranny of a fascist state, and established potentially the greatest country ever on the face of the earth.12 disciples, plus Yashua, makes 13. Thirteen is a magic number. It may be the impetus that finally breaks the back of prohibition.FREE MARIJUANA FOR EVERYONE (alcohol is a solvent, and a poison))
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