Will Conservatives Get Behind Arkansas Medical Marijuana Initiative?

Reefer Madness in Arkansas
OK, that's probably not the message the medical marijuana people hope to get across.

Many things happened while I was out (some fairly important things, I guess, like this and this). But one recent development worth catching up on is the approval of 2012 ballot language for a medical marijuana initiative in Arkansas. I talked a few days ago with the director of the initiative, Ryan Denham of Arkansans for Compassionate Care (ACA), and I’m increasingly convinced this issue is ripe for broad-based support.

Here, let’s take one example: The campaign’s field director in Texarkana is a fellow by the name of Dwayne Hall, a 47-year-old insurance  adjuster who’s been active in both Republican politics and the Tea Party, along with various other right-leaning causes (he’s a big Ron Paul fan). He jokes that he’s a “radical” right-winger.

I talked to Hall this morning, and he said his support for the medical marijuana initiative boils down to basic libertarian principles: “People should have a right to do what they want with their own bodies, and the government should have nothing to do with it,” he explained. He also likened the ACC effort to the grassroots mobilization of the Tea Party movement in the last election cycle, which he said was about “educating the populace about the issues” and “reaching way out of your own base.”

Likewise, Denham, the campaign director, emphasized coalition building. He mentioned outreach to younger voters and patient advocacy groups, which would be expected, but also veterans, the faith community, physicians and, yes, conservatives and libertarians.

While the principal thrust of the medical marijuana campaign is to focus on patients, Denham recognizes that others may support the campaign for other reasons, such as a commitment to federalism and limited government.

“For the Tea Party, conservatives and libertarians, they want the federal government out of our lives,” Denham says. “They want the federal government to stop wasting so much money enforcing this law. They believe in states’ rights, and this is definitely a states’ right issue. But I think most of the Tea Party people we have on board just know about the merits of medical marijuana.”

Let’s not make too much of this yet—yet. I have no expectation that the Republican Party as an organization, or many elected GOP officials, will support the initiative. And remember that the “Tea Party” is an amorphous thing, and what support the medical marijuana campaign pulls from that quarter will likely result from individual motivations, rather than an endorsement by Tea Party organizations in toto.

But keep an eye out for right-leaning people who get behind the medical marijuana campaign, because they’ll be there, and probably in larger numbers than you might at first expect in a conservative southern state. The key point, I suspect, is this is an issue that scrambles traditional political categories.

A sidenote: the University of Arkansas polled on this question in 2001 and 2004, and both times the responses showed over 60 percent approval for medical marijuana in Arkansas. (I looked for a more recent statewide survey on the question; so far I’ve come up dry. If you know of more recent data, let me know in the comments.)

I plan to write about this issue at greater length in the future, where I’ll expand on these ideas, but for now just be aware of that intriguing dynamic—it will be significant.

Now, readers, please retreat to the comments section to a) decry Kinkade’s alarming strain of libertarian hippie-ism and b) make a bunch of terrible marijuana puns (“Thanks for giving us the straight DOPE, Dave!,” “Man, I can’t wait to WEED more about this!,” etc.). Eh, you guys and your puns, you’re the worst. Get to it now, chop chop.

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31 thoughts on “Will Conservatives Get Behind Arkansas Medical Marijuana Initiative?

  • June 3, 2011 at 12:48 pm
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    “People should have a right to do what they want with their own bodies, and the government should have nothing to do with it,”

    -Illegal drugs don’t just harm the people who use them they also destroy families and communties. Medical marijuana has been a complete failure in California and everywhere it has been tried. The potency of to days marijuana is off the charts compared to the marijuana of just a few years ago. There has been a sharp increase in individuals checking into to drug rehab facilities for marijuana addiction alone. It’s dangerous, it’s addictive, and it’s bad news. Beware of any politician who wants to legalize anything that they know is harmful to you.

    Reply
  • June 3, 2011 at 6:35 pm
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    I will gladly sign the petition and vote in favor of the initiative. I’ve known some cancer patients who believe they would have benefited from it medically – if it was available from a legal source. The decision should be up to the doctor and patient, not the “drug war” bozos like Timetorun.

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  • June 3, 2011 at 10:24 pm
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    I will sign in favor of the initiative as well

    The misinformation of “reefer madness” minded individuals is outdated and has no basis in the real world

    Bottom line it is therapeutic im not saying legalize a free for all but make it available to those who have no other options.

    My Grandfather (86yrs.) is in the last stages of Alzheimer’s. He constantly is arguing with the voices in his head and tormented by people who aren’t even there, crying from fears that replay themselves in his mind. ALL and I mean ALL pharmaceuticals that may help to alleviate this torment have been tried. Marijuana was a last ditch effort to help, if even for a short period of time, and it has helped so much.

    Ignorance is Bliss
    But Knowledge is Power

    If you had to watch your family member die a slow and agonizing death after all pharmaceuticals have been exhausted and knew that marijuana would help to give calmness to a tormented and agitated mind…wouldn’t you do anything possible to help your loved ones.

    Him and others afflicted with terminal illnesses (cancer, HIVAIDS, Alzheimer’s,etc.) should not be allowed to suffer for the shortcomings of politics, politicians, Pharmaceutical company’s and money.

    It’s a plant that has been around for thousands of years and im sure will be here long after my grandfather and i are gone.

    Reply
  • June 4, 2011 at 8:31 am
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    It’s not nor has it ever been about the medical benefits of marijuana. Every were it has been legalized for medical use it has been grossly abused. People have medical marijuana card for ADHD, anxiety,, and any other ailment that the dopers can think of. Just on this blog it has been proclaimed a treatment for Alzheimer’s and cancer.(I am always amazed by how many pro-dope crown have grandparents and family members with cancer and Alzheimer’s.) Truth is scientist developed a synthetic form of THC called Marinol years ago. Problem is you don’t get high off of it so the dope head crowd isn’t satisfied.

    Before anyone signs a petition you should ask how the medical marijuana legalization in California has gone. Any respectable, knowledgeable individual will tell you it has been a disaster. Before you sign go to a pro marijuana rally and see the type of people there. Does it look like a group with good mental health? That’s what you want for Arkansas?

    One joint has 7 times the carcinogens of one tobacco cigarette. The medical marijuana in California was recently tested and was found to have high levels of pesticides and numerous other cancer causing agents. You people want to ingest something grown in Mexico, unregulated, and shipped to this country for you to ingest? Marijuana has profound negative medical effects. It has profound psychological effects. If you don’t believe me tale a trip to “Wakaruse this weekend.

    Signed,
    Bozo the Anti-Dope Clown.

    Reply
  • June 4, 2011 at 11:49 pm
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    Dear TimetoRun:

    The other post didnt say or imply that MJ was a “cure” for those diseases, but that it was helpful in managing the symptoms. California should not be the only ‘experiment’ we look into. How about YOU research Portgal?

    What happens when the government restricts your medical options when you need them? Thanks for reading

    Reply
  • June 5, 2011 at 12:21 am
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    I didn’t call it a cure either, I used the word treatment. The united states and Portugal have absolutely nothing in common and I think the places in America would serve as better models. The government has a duty and responsibility to regulate what medicines are safe for us to use

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  • June 5, 2011 at 5:09 pm
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    I thought this was going to be a serious blog. We must be smoking the same stuff.

    ====== (<—– My blunt)
    ===== (<—– David's blunt)

    Reply
  • June 6, 2011 at 2:15 pm
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    I’m still not on board for legalization of weed; however decriminalization would be a nice step forward in getting our prison population growth under control.

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  • June 6, 2011 at 3:51 pm
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    “Illegal drugs don’t just harm the people who use them they also destroy families and communties.” – Yes, they can. Prescription (legal) drugs are doing a much better job as of recently.

    “Medical marijuana has been a complete failure in California and everywhere it has been tried.” – According to.. you? Explanation? Any sources?

    “The potency of to days marijuana is off the charts compared to the marijuana of just a few years ago.” – Myth. Sources?

    “There has been a sharp increase in individuals checking into to drug rehab facilities for marijuana addiction alone.” – Sources?

    Reply
  • June 6, 2011 at 4:10 pm
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    “People have medical marijuana card for ADHD, anxiety,” – So you don’t believe it could help with these problems? Sources?

    “Just on this blog it has been proclaimed a treatment for Alzheimer’s and cancer” – You don’t believe can be? Why is that?

    “Truth is scientist developed a synthetic form of THC called Marinol years ago.” – Marijuana includes over 60 cannabinoids, many of which have medical benefits. Marinol just has THC. Marinol takes longer to work. Marinol still produces psychoactive effects, although these effects are often adverse. http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/hemp/medical/marinol1.htm

    “One joint has 7 times the carcinogens of one tobacco cigarette.” – According to one study. Other studies say that marijuana decreases cancer in rates, etc. http://health.usnews.com/health-news/family-health/cancer/articles/2009/04/01/active-ingredient-in-marijuana-kills-brain-cancer

    “The medical marijuana in California was recently tested and was found to have high levels of pesticides and numerous other cancer causing agents.” – Source?

    The big problem here is someone trying to prevent other people from making their own health choices. I’m not snatching any Big Macs from anyone’s hands.. or alcohol.. or cigarettes..

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  • June 6, 2011 at 4:15 pm
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    “Beware of any politician who wants to legalize anything that they know is harmful to you.” – I guess our ancestors should have been cautious of the people who legalized tobacco and alcohol? No, because they’ve always been legal. That means they’re not harmful, right?

    Let people make their own health choices.

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  • June 6, 2011 at 5:48 pm
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    “One joint has 7 times the carcinogens of one tobacco cigarette.” – Also, there are other methods of administering marijuana. Vaporization eliminates carcinogens and respiratory problems. Edible marijuana products do as well.

    Reply
  • June 6, 2011 at 7:54 pm
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    1) Marijuana’s potency can be bred for higher or lower levels.
    2) Marijuana can actually be JUICED and drank to enjoy its therapeutic effects.
    3) Patients should have a safe place to access their medicine.

    @Timetorun: Check out the bill that ACC introduced. It’s the most comprehensive mmj bill ever written. Arkansans for Compassionate Care are doing it right.

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  • June 6, 2011 at 9:55 pm
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    Just for the record I’m not going to go thru everything I say and cite sources again at your request. But for the sake of the debate;

    “Illegal drugs don’t just harm the people who use them they also destroy families and communties.” – Yes, they can. Prescription (legal) drugs are doing a much better job as of recently.

    —I would disagree that they are doing MORE harm but I do agree than prescription drug abuse is harmful as well. I see this a lot with the pro marijuana crown. Alcohol is bad! Cigarettes are bad! The argument that
    A. Is bad and legal
    B. Is bad and illegal
    Therefore both should be legal is a pretty weak argument.

    “Medical marijuana has been a complete failure in California and everywhere it has been tried.” – According to.. you? Explanation? Any sources?

    —No not me. The New York Times. Here a story about some cities having to go back and recriminalize marijuana
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/09/world/americas/09iht-pot.1.13565173.html

    “The potency of to days marijuana is off the charts compared to the marijuana of just a few years ago.” – Myth. Sources?

    —Myth?You don’t really believe that.
    Here’s another article from the L.A. Times
    “Marijuana is more potent than at any time since scientific analysis of the drug began in the 1970s, according to a report from the University of Mississippi’s Potency Monitoring Project. The average amount of THC in marijuana, the primary psychoactive ingredient in the drug, was tested at 9.6% –more than double the potency of marijuana in 1983.”
    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/booster_shots/2008/06/marijuana-more.html

    “There has been a sharp increase in individuals checking into to drug rehab facilities for marijuana addiction alone.” – Sources?

    —The Wall Street Journal
    http://www.postgazette.com/pg/06122/686820-114.stm

    “People have medical marijuana card for ADHD, anxiety,” – So you don’t believe it could help with these problems? Sources?

    —I acknowledge that there are people who truly believe they are helped by Marijuana. Contrary to the anecdotal evidence of a few people with compelling stories, however, the FDA and the Top Medical Associations of our country, including the American Medical Association, the American Cancer Society, the American Glaucoma Society, the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the very medical societies that advocate for patients with serious illnesses like cancer, glaucoma and MS, all have rejected Marijuana as a medicine. They say Marijuana has too many negative effects and that real medicines, like “Marinol”, work as well or better for the problems stated and are approved by the FDA, available for prescription by physicians, and could be reimbursable by insurance.

    “Just on this blog it has been proclaimed a treatment for Alzheimer’s and cancer” – You don’t believe can be? Why is that?

    —See above

    “Truth is scientist developed a synthetic form of THC called Marinol years ago.” – Marijuana includes over 60 cannabinoids, many of which have medical benefits. Marinol just has THC. Marinol takes longer to work. Marinol still produces psychoactive effects, although these effects are often adverse. http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/hemp/medical/marinol1.htm

    —See above

    “One joint has 7 times the carcinogens of one tobacco cigarette.” – According to one study. Other studies say that marijuana decreases cancer in rates, etc. http://health.usnews.com/health-news/family-health/cancer/articles/2009/04/01/active-ingredient-in-marijuana-kills-brain-cancer

    –See above (Side Note, Marijuana kils brain cancer)
    ))))-Eyes rolling-(((

    “Beware of any politician who wants to legalize anything that they know is harmful to you.” – I guess our ancestors should have been cautious of the people who legalized tobacco and alcohol? No, because they’ve always been legal. That means they’re not harmful, right?
    Let people make their own health choices.

    Weed is not a legitimate medicine. Maybe LSD, or crack, or meth would help someone’s medical condition. Should we legalize that or rely of proven, tested medicines that are approved for use?

    “One joint has 7 times the carcinogens of one tobacco cigarette.” – Also, there are other methods of administering marijuana. Vaporization eliminates carcinogens and respiratory problems. Edible marijuana products do as well.

    —So we should legalize marijuana brownies?

    Patients should have a safe place to access their medicine.

    —To safe approves effective medicine I agree. Marijuana is none of these things.

    @Timetorun: Check out the bill that ACC introduced. It’s the most comprehensive mmj bill ever written. Arkansans for Compassionate Care are doing it right

    —Thank you for your contribution to this debate. I will look into it.

    Reply
  • June 8, 2011 at 4:48 am
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    “Just for the record I’m not going to go thru everything I say and cite sources again at your request. But for the sake of the debate;” – If you’re going to make statements that aren’t based on logic/reasoning, but would come from empirical research, you should back up those statements with sources. Otherwise people are supposed to just believe what you say for no reason.

    “—I would disagree that they are doing MORE harm..” – Google prescription drug abuse/overdose rates/statistics. Recent ones.

    “A. Is bad and legal
    B. Is bad and illegal
    Therefore both should be legal is a pretty weak argument.” – I don’t agree that marijuana is “bad”, but there’s nothing weak about that argument. You need a reason to prohibit something legally, not the other way around. There was never a legitimate reason to do so, if you disagree, then surely you believe alcohol and tobacco should be illegal.

    “—No not me. The New York Times.” – Some residents and officials believe so. That’s one side. Where are the patients and dispensary workers who think it’s failed?

    “—Myth?You don’t really believe that..The average amount of THC in marijuana..” – There is no such thing as an average amount of THC, because every plant on earth wasn’t tested. Each plant has it’s own amount (which can be changed). Each person regulates the amount of marijuana/THC they consume, so there wouldn’t be a problem if the marijuana happened to be very potent. No one complains that grain alcohol is legal.

    “—The Wall Street Journal” – In this study they only gathered information about people who claimed to have a dependence on marijuana/other substances. This doesn’t include the many people who use marijuana medically or recreationally, in a healthy and responsible way. Not that I don’t believe marijuana dependence exists. But so does coffee dependence, TV dependence, Facebook dependence, etc.

    “—Contrary to the anecdotal evidence of a few people with compelling stories..the FDA and the Top Medical Associations of our country, including the American Medical Association, the American Cancer Society, the American Glaucoma Society, the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society,..all have rejected Marijuana as a medicine.” – Now you can’t just say that without clearly giving sources of all these organizations formally and unanimously rejecting marijuana.

    “They say Marijuana has too many negative effects and that real medicines, like “Marinol”, work as well or better for the problems stated and are approved by the FDA, available for prescription by physicians, and could be reimbursable by insurance.” – If Marinol is “synthetic” THC, why would it work any better than a natural substance? What negative effects does marijuana have that a synthetic THC substance doesn’t have?

    “–See above (Side Note, Marijuana kils brain cancer)
    ))))-Eyes rolling-(((” – I don’t know why you’re rolling your eyes. Is usnews.com not credible? The University of Madrid not credible? Are you just immediately disregarding the research? Does webmd or Harvard make your eyes roll? http://www.webmd.com/lung-cancer/news/20070417/marijuana-may-fight-lung-tumors

    “Weed is not a legitimate medicine.” – You’re free to believe that. But you shouldn’t be free to prevent other people from using it who believe it is legitimate.

    “—So we should legalize marijuana brownies?” – Any safe form of marijuana, especially if it has medicinal value.

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  • June 8, 2011 at 5:54 pm
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    “A. Is bad and legal
    B. Is bad and illegal
    Therefore both should be legal is a pretty weak argument.” – I don’t agree that marijuana is “bad”, but there’s nothing weak about that argument. You need a reason to prohibit something legally, not the other way around. There was never a legitimate reason to do so, if you disagree, then surely you believe alcohol and tobacco should be illegal.”

    —I know you don’t think marijuana is bad. You think Marijuana should be legal. What you have done with the above statement is tipped your hand. You see what the pro legalization crowd doesn’t want you to know is that it’s really not about “medical marijuana”. It’s about marijuana being legal. Period end of story. That’s why they try to tell you it’s a legitimate medicine for everything known to man. Hell GS155 tied to claim that it was the cure, THE CURE for brain cancer (!) even though the American Medical Association, the American Cancer Society, the American Glaucoma Society, the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the very medical societies that advocate for patients with serious illnesses like cancer, glaucoma and MS, all have rejected Marijuana as a medicine.
    –It’s not about medical marijuana people! It’s about drug addicts being able to use illegal destructive drugs when ever and how ever they want. Please don’t tell me marijuana is not addictive. I have personally known people who cannot stop smoking weed. If you are being honest you will admit that you know people addicted to marijuana as well. I’ll say this again, if you don’t think marijuana has a negative effect on regular users they go to a pro legalization rally and take a good look at the people there.

    “—No not me. The New York Times.” – Some residents and officials believe so. That’s one side. Where are the patients and dispensary workers who think it’s failed?”
    —That’s your answer to my argument? That’s your answer to the source you requested I give? Ask drug addicts if marijuana works for them?

    “Myth?You don’t really believe that..The average amount of THC in marijuana..” – There is no such thing as an average amount of THC, because every plant on earth wasn’t tested. Each plant has its own amount (which can be changed). Each person regulates the amount of marijuana/THC they consume, so there wouldn’t be a problem if the marijuana happened to be very potent. No one complains that grain alcohol is legal.”

    You don’t have to test every plant on the planet to arrive at an average amount of THC. People genetically engineer marijuana for the most potent form they can grow. The better the science has gotten the better more potent marijuana has become. The statement that “. Each plant has its own amount (which can be changed). Each person regulates the amount of marijuana/THC they consume” is not very honest. Do you know someone who had ever told you “Wow that plant I grew was WAY too strong, I’ll have to weaken the next crop!” People genetically alter marijuana to make it as strong as they can.

    “The Wall Street Journal” – In this study they only gathered information about people who claimed to have a dependence on marijuana/other substances. This doesn’t include the many people who use marijuana medically or recreationally, in a healthy and responsible way. Not that I don’t believe marijuana dependence exists. But so does coffee dependence, TV dependence, Facebook dependence, etc.

    —Yes they all exist but to argue that being addicted to marijuana is as bad as being addicted to coffee, television, or facebook is disingenuous.

    “Contrary to the anecdotal evidence of a few people with compelling stories..the FDA and the Top Medical Associations of our country, including the American Medical Association, the American Cancer Society, the American Glaucoma Society, the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society,..all have rejected Marijuana as a medicine.” – Now you can’t just say that without clearly giving sources of all these organizations formally and unanimously rejecting marijuana.

    —It’s a fact. Google it yourself.

    “They say Marijuana has too many negative effects and that real medicines, like “Marinol”, work as well or better for the problems stated and are approved by the FDA, available for prescription by physicians, and could be reimbursable by insurance.” – If Marinol is “synthetic” THC, why would it work any better than a natural substance? What negative effects does marijuana have that a synthetic THC substance doesn’t have?

    —-You don’t get high of synthetic marijuana, that’s why you guys don’t accept it.

    “Weed is not a legitimate medicine.” – You’re free to believe that. But you shouldn’t be free to prevent other people from using it who believe it is legitimate.”

    —-So we should let people use crack, heroin, LSD if they think it helps treat glaucoma?
    “So we should legalize marijuana brownies?” – Any safe form of marijuana, especially if it has medicinal value.

    —There are no safe forms of marijuana. Marijuana is a highly addictive and dangerous drug. Long-term chronic marijuana use is associated with Amotivational Syndrome, characterized by apathy, impairment of judgment, memory and concentration, and loss of motivation, ambition and interest in the pursuit of personal goals. High doses of marijuana can result in mental confusion, panic reactions and hallucinations. Researchers have also found an association between marijuana use and an increased risk of depression; an increased risk and earlier onset of schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders, especially for teens that have a genetic predisposition.
    —-Don’t ask me to cite my work it’s a matter of public record.

    This has drug (no pun intennded) for so long I wonder if anyone else is reading this?

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  • June 8, 2011 at 6:41 pm
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    I would sign it, and from my personal experience a lot of Republicans support liberalization of marijuana laws. The problem is the GOP leaders are still clinging to social conservatives even though it’s become pretty apparent that their power is dwindling in the party.

    The media is part of the problem too. Take a candidate like Ron Paul or Gary Johnson and the inevitable question asked them will be “how do you think your extreme views on drug policy will be received by your party?” Which totally ignores the increased support shown in the polls.

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  • June 8, 2011 at 6:56 pm
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    As much as I hate to admit it you might (might!)be right about the dwindling role social conservatives’ play inside the party. I wouldn’t call Ron Paul or Gary Johnson leaders of the Republican Party however. Most consider Ron Paul more of a Libertarian and I never heard of Gary Johnson until a couple of weeks ago. But hell where are the leaders inside the Republican Party?
    I think we, people on the opposite side of this debate, have been too consumed with enforcing marijuana laws and have not paid enough attention to educating people on the dangers of marijuana. Drug laws have to be approached with a three sided approach.

    For what it’s worth to you and GS155 I think in the end this I a battle I will lose. My only hope is that in California and the other places it has been legalized the effort will go the way it did in Alaska. Abuse got so bad there Alaska had to go back and re-criminalize it.

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  • June 8, 2011 at 11:07 pm
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    Neither Paul nor Johnson are leaders in the party. I do find it strange though that references to Paul being out of the mainstream of the GOP accompany any article that he’s in.

    His poll numbers this year have typically been better than Rick Santorum or Michelle Bachmann. Yet while Santorum is presented as a longshot, it isn’t said that he is out of the mainstream. And Bachmann is always mentioned as a Tea Party darling.

    I feel like election news stories always tend to come with a bit of subtle editorializing that helps to pick winners and losers. And people always want to back a winner.

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  • June 9, 2011 at 4:54 am
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    “You see what the pro legalization crowd..That’s why they try to tell you it’s a legitimate medicine for everything known to man.” – I’m not part of some global conspiracy. I’ll tell you straight up that I’m for the legalization of marijuana. But what we’re talking about is medical marijuana. The fact that patients ask to use it and doctors want to prescribe it (although they face persecution for doing so) legitimizes it’s medicinal value. Along with the fact that it’s been proven to have treatment value for many ailments/disorders/etc.

    “Hell GS155 tied to claim that it was the cure, THE CURE for brain cancer” – I didn’t say that. I posted this link: http://health.usnews.com/health-news/family-health/cancer/articles/2009/04/01/active-ingredient-in-marijuana-kills-brain-cancer. You can claim the website or researches are lying, but I didn’t perform the research. The article doesn’t claim that marijuana is definitely a cure for brain cancer.

    “Please don’t tell me marijuana is not addictive.” – I said people can be dependent on marijuana (addiction is a medical word, dependence is the psychological word). I don’t agree it causes dependence for everyone who uses it, or even for the majority.

    “That’s your answer to the source you requested I give? Ask drug addicts if marijuana works for them?” – My answer is ask people who use the substance, not people who are against it and have never used it, nor do they need to for medical purposes. You sure that doesn’t make sense?

    “You don’t have to test every plant on the planet to arrive at an average amount of THC.” – Yes you would. You can have an average for a certain geographical area, which still won’t be exact.

    “People genetically alter marijuana to make it as strong as they can.” – Many people try to. The fact that less potent marijuana has always and continues to exist suggest not everyone does (or can). Like I said people can choose how much they use, so it really doesn’t matter how potent it is. Prescriptions have doses.

    “Yes they all exist but to argue that being addicted to marijuana is as bad as being addicted to coffee, television, or facebook is disingenuous.” – No, it’s an opinion. Morally bad? Bad for your health? What do you even mean? In my opinion any of those dependences can have a strong negative effect on a person’s life.

    “You don’t get high of synthetic marijuana, that’s why you guys don’t accept it.” – Here’s the link again: http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/hemp/medical/marinol1.htm. It says Marinol has psychoactive effects. You can get “high” from it, although the effects are often reported as being negative.

    “-So we should let people use crack, heroin, LSD if they think it helps treat glaucoma?” – I’m not under the impression that those substances help treat glaucoma or any of the other ailments that marijuana can treat. My opinion is that it is not the government’s decision what a person puts in their body.

    “Long-term chronic marijuana use is associated with Amotivational Syndrome..” – http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/health-pubs-drug-cannab2-ch72.htm. You won’t find “Amotivational Syndrome” in the DSM..

    “High doses of marijuana can result in mental confusion, panic reactions and hallucinations.” – Yes. It’s possible in some cases. What happens when you take too many prescription drugs? Alcohol? Everything in moderation.

    “Researchers have also found..” – Some studies found this association, others didn’t. But most medical and psychological professionals agree that young people/teens shouldn’t use most drugs, including marijuana.

    “I think we, people on the opposite side..” – I agree that there hasn’t been enough research on marijuana. However I think if there was more you would realize it’s not as dangerous as you believe.

    “For what it’s worth to you and GS155 I think in the end this I a battle I will lose.” – I think the problem is that “you think” it’s a “battle”. It doesn’t harm you if people want to use a substance, medicinally or recreationally. You don’t lose anything if medical marijuana or recreational marijuana becomes legal in Arkansas. In fact you might gain from the tax revenue. Maybe you should rethink you’re need to “fight”.

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  • June 9, 2011 at 10:14 pm
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    “You see what the pro legalization crowd..That’s why they try to tell you it’s a legitimate medicine for everything known to man.” – I’m not part of some global conspiracy. I’ll tell you straight up that I’m for the legalization of marijuana. But what we’re talking about is medical marijuana. The fact that patients ask to use it and doctors want to prescribe it (although they face persecution for doing so) legitimizes it’s medicinal value. Along with the fact that it’s been proven to have treatment value for many ailments/disorders/etc.
    —Medical marijuana is just a tool for you and the pro legalization crowd to be able to smoke weed. It’s a red herring in effort to advocate broader legalization of drug use. Doctors should face persecution for prescribing a marijuana.There are no FDA-approved medications that are smoked. For one thing, smoking is generally a poor way to deliver medicine. It is difficult to administer safe, regulated dosages of medicines in smoked form. Secondly, the harmful chemicals and carcinogens that are byproducts of smoking create entirely new health problems. There are four times the level of tar in a marijuana cigarette, for example, than in a tobacco cigarette
    “Please don’t tell me marijuana is not addictive.” – I said people can be dependent on marijuana (addiction is a medical word, dependence is the psychological word). I don’t agree it causes dependence for everyone who uses it, or even for the majority.
    —In an honest way I want you to think of one person you have known in your whole like that is a daily smoker of weed that has ever stopped smoking. If you are being honest you can’t think of one person. It is HIGHLY addictive. If you are a regular smoker of weed I challenge you to try to stop for 2 weeks and see for your self the withdrawel symptoms.
    “That’s your answer to the source you requested I give? Ask drug addicts if marijuana works for them?” – My answer is ask people who use the substance, not people who are against it and have never used it, nor do they need to for medical purposes. You sure that doesn’t make sense?
    It makes sense it’s just ludicrous and a silly.
    “You don’t have to test every plant on the planet to arrive at an average amount of THC.” – Yes you would. You can have an average for a certain geographical area, which still won’t be exact.
    —You really believe scientists have to test every plant ever grown to get an average amount of TCH in marijuana? By that reasoning I’m not sure how we come to an average of almost anything.
    “Yes they all exist but to argue that being addicted to marijuana is as bad as being addicted to coffee, television, or face book is disingenuous.” – No, it’s an opinion. Morally bad? Bad for your health? What do you even mean? In my opinion any of those dependences can have a strong negative effect on a person’s life.
    —Yea and yes. Let me clarify for you. Marijuana is worse for you than a cup of coffee and facebook.
    “You don’t get high of synthetic marijuana, that’s why you guys don’t accept it.” – Here’s the link again: http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/hemp/medical/marinol1.htm. It says Marinol has psychoactive effects. You can get “high” from it, although the effects are often reported as being negative.
    I don’t know who Schaffer is but here is a much more reliable source for information on Marinol. It’s called the FDA. The Food and Drug Administration has determined that Marinol is safe, effective, and has therapeutic benefits for use as a treatment for nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy, and as a treatment of weight loss in patients with AIDS. However, it does not produce the harmful health effects associated with smoking marijuana.
    “-So we should let people use crack, heroin, LSD if they think it helps treat glaucoma?” – I’m not under the impression that those substances help treat glaucoma or any of the other ailments that marijuana can treat. My opinion is that it is not the government’s decision what a person puts in their body.
    —That just comes down to a difference of opinion then. I don’t think drugs should be legal and you do. I have seen communities and families devasted by illegal drugs. On the topic of glaucoma, according to the Institute of Medicine, there are six classes of drugs and multiple surgical techniques that are available to treat glaucoma that effectively slow the progression of this disease by reducing high intraocular pressure.
    “Long-term chronic marijuana use is associated with Amotivational Syndrome..” – http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/health-pubs-drug-cannab2-ch72.htm. You won’t find “Amotivational Syndrome” in the DSM..
    —There was a big push by the pro marijuana crowd about ten years ago to debunk Amotivational Syndrome as a symptom of long term marijuana abuse. These people don’t want you to think that marijuana is bad for you. It’s a real and disturbing trend. It was developed largely of case histories and observational reports on chronic marijuana users. If you have ever known a young person who is a marijuana abuser you have seen it firsthand.
    “High doses of marijuana can result in mental confusion, panic reactions and hallucinations.” – Yes. It’s possible in some cases. What happens when you take too many prescription drugs? Alcohol? Everything in moderation.
    —-If you realize it’s possible why would you want to legalize it? Prescription drugs serve a purpose I our society, marijuana does not.
    “Researchers have also found…” – Some studies found this association, others didn’t. But most medical and psychological professionals agree that young people/teens shouldn’t use most drugs, including marijuana.
    So should we place an age cap on marijuana if it were to be legal?
    “I think we, people on the opposite side..” – I agree that there hasn’t been enough research on marijuana. However I think if there was more you would realize it’s not as dangerous as you believe.
    —-I have seen firsthand how destructive it is.
    “For what it’s worth to you and GS155 I think in the end this I a battle I will lose.” – I think the problem is that “you think” it’s a “battle”. It doesn’t harm you if people want to use a substance, medicinally or recreationally. You don’t lose anything if medical marijuana or recreational marijuana becomes legal in Arkansas. In fact you might gain from the tax revenue. Maybe you should rethink you’re need to “fight”.
    —It most certainly does harm me. In a 1990 report, the National Transportation Safety Board studied 182 fatal truck accidents. It found that just as many of the accidents were caused by drivers using marijuana as were caused by alcohol — 12.5 percent in each case. Consider also that drug use, including marijuana, contributes to crime. A large percentage of those arrested for crimes test positive for marijuana. Nationwide, 40 percent of adult males tested positive for marijuana at the time of their arrest.

    Reply
  • June 10, 2011 at 1:38 am
    Permalink

    “Medical marijuana is just a tool for you and the pro legalization crowd to be able to smoke weed.” – You can assume what you want. The fact is it has medicinal value, therefore it should be legal to use as medicine.

    “There are no FDA-approved medications that are smoked.” – You keep retreating to arguing things that have already been dismissed. I’ve said twice that vaporization and edible products avoid any harm caused from smoking. Are you just ignoring that?

    “If you are a regular smoker of weed I challenge you to try to stop for 2 weeks and see for your self the withdrawel symptoms.” – I am, though I only “smoke” occassionally. Last time I used marijuana was around mid-May. No problems here.

    “It makes sense it’s just ludicrous and a silly.” – It makes sense, but it’s ludicrous..? Hmm.. “That” doesn’t make sense.

    “You really believe scientists have to test every plant ever grown to get an average amount of TCH in marijuana? By that reasoning I’m not sure how we come to an average of almost anything.” – Now you understand. We “don’t” get an average on anything. Not an exact average. We get an approximate average for certain geographical regions, people in certain geographical regions, etc.

    “Yea and yes. Let me clarify for you. Marijuana is worse for you than a cup of coffee and facebook.” – According to you. Feel free to quantify and clarify this “fact”. Keep in mind we were talking about “dependence”, not one cup of coffee. What was that about being “honest”?

    “I don’t know who Schaffer is..it does not produce the harmful health effects associated with smoking marijuana.” – There you go again. One more time: SMOKING IS NOT THE ONLY WAY TO USE MARIJUANA. VAPORIZATION AND EDIBLE PRODUCTS AVOID HARM CAUSED BY SMOKING. You didn’t even address what you were quoting. Marinol has psychoactive effects (getting “high). You said this “pro-legalization” conspiracy group doesn’t accept Marinol as a substitute medicine for marijuana because “you can’t get high from it”, which is incorrect.

    “I don’t think drugs should be legal and you do.” – Drugs are legal. Alcohol, nicotine, caffeine, prescription drugs (opiates, etc.) I can see the reasoning in prohibiting drugs that cause extreme harm, physical addiction, overdoses (heroin, cocaine, alcohol).

    “I have seen communities and families devasted by illegal drugs.” – I have too. I haven’t seen any families devasted by marijuana.

    “On the topic of glaucoma..” – And so does marijuana. The other drugs used don’t cancel out marijuana. It could still be used as well. Not that I think glaucoma is the most serious and pressing ailment for medical marijuana patients. Multiple sclerosis, AIDS, terminal cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, anorexia nervosa, etc. are usually in more dire need of medical marijuana, as it often helps when other methods fail.

    “There was a big push by the pro marijuana crowd about ten years ago to debunk Amotivational Syndrome..It was developed largely of case histories and observational reports on chronic marijuana users.” – Is the APA the “pro marijuana crowd”? Because they don’t recognize it as a disorder in any volume of the DSM. Don’t forget to mention these case histories occurred between the 60’s & 80’s.

    “Prescription drugs serve a purpose I our society, marijuana does not.” – Yes, it does. One purpose is as a prescription drug. Do you realize that all prescription drugs are not healthy? The difference between illegal and prescription drugs is only semantic. Each substance has to be looked at to find out if it is safe and beneficial.

    “So should we place an age cap on marijuana if it were to be legal?” – Yes, I think so. Alcohol and nicotine have one. However if there was a case of a patient who was under that age cap, and marijuana seemed to be the only treatment for their ailment, the options should be weighed to see if the patient should use marijuana.

    “I have seen firsthand how destructive it is” – What have you seen? Anecdotal evidence? I thought that wasn’t good enough?

    “In a 1990 report, the National Transportation Safety Board studied 182 fatal truck accidents. It found that just as many of the accidents were caused by drivers using marijuana as were caused by alcohol — 12.5 percent in each case.” – First off – one report in 1990.. Not too impressive. Second, I’m not sure I understand what you’re trying to say. 12.5% of the 182 accidents were caused by marijuana, and 12.5% were caused by alcohol? Using alcohol & marijuana together impairs your driving more than using either of the substances individually. And I never said you should be able to use marijuana and drive (although it does not impair your ability to drive as much as alcohol, or in the same way).

    “Consider also that drug use, including marijuana, contributes to crime.” – Marijuana contributes mostly to crime in that crime occurs because it is illegal. Drug dealers fight each other (Mexico). People kill each other by the thousands daily over $. That money comes from many things but that’s what they’re after.

    “A large percentage of those arrested for crimes test positive for marijuana. Nationwide, 40 percent of adult males tested positive for marijuana at the time of their arrest.” – Correlation is not causation. Just because someone commits a crime, and has some amount marijuana in their system, doesn’t mean the marijuana caused them to commit a crime. Marijuana is detectable in the body through urine tests for much longer (~2 weeks – 1 month) than most other substances. Drug tests mainly profit from marijuana users. Users of cocaine, meth, heroin and other drugs can test clean after just a few days.

    Reply
  • June 10, 2011 at 8:27 am
    Permalink

    “Medical marijuana is just a tool for you and the pro legalization crowd to be able to smoke weed.” – You can assume what you want. The fact is it has medicinal value, therefore it should be legal to use as medicine.

    —No it does not have medical value. If it did it would have been approved for medical use decades ago. Cannabis is one of the most studies plants in planet earth and it’s still not recognized as a medicine by the FDA.

    “There are no FDA-approved medications that are smoked.” – You keep retreating to arguing things that have already been dismissed. I’ve said twice that vaporization and edible products avoid any harm caused from smoking. Are you just ignoring that?

    —It has not been dismissed or ignored by me. Do you want to legalize marijuana only if smoked or vaporized? Are you admitting that “smoking marijuana is bad for you?

    “It makes sense it’s just ludicrous and a silly.” – It makes sense, but it’s ludicrous..? Hmm.. “That” doesn’t make sense.

    —It makes sense that you would say something that ridiculous and it’s silly. Understand that better?

    “You really believe scientists have to test every plant ever grown to get an average amount of TCH in marijuana? By that reasoning I’m not sure how we come to an average of almost anything.” – Now you understand. We “don’t” get an average on anything. Not an exact average. We get an approximate average for certain geographical regions, people in certain geographical regions, etc.

    —I think you realize how absurd that reasoning is and now you are parsing words.

    “Yea and yes. Let me clarify for you. Marijuana is worse for you than a cup of coffee and facebook.” – According to you. Feel free to quantify and clarify this “fact”. Keep in mind we were talking about “dependence”, not one cup of coffee. What was that about being “honest”?

    —If you think a dependence on coffee is worse or equal to dependence on marijuana then you aren’t dealing with the reality of the dangers of marijuana.

    “I don’t know who Schaffer is..it does not produce the harmful health effects associated with smoking marijuana.” – There you go again. One more time: SMOKING IS NOT THE ONLY WAY TO USE MARIJUANA. VAPORIZATION AND EDIBLE PRODUCTS AVOID HARM CAUSED BY SMOKING. You didn’t even address what you were quoting. Marinol has psychoactive effects (getting “high). You said this “pro-legalization” conspiracy group doesn’t accept Marinol as a substitute medicine for marijuana because “you can’t get high from it”, which is incorrect.

    —-Do you want to legalize marijuana only if smoked or vaporized? Are you admitting that “smoking” marijuana is bad for you?

    “I don’t think drugs should be legal and you do.” – Drugs are legal. Alcohol, nicotine, caffeine, prescription drugs (opiates, etc.) I can see the reasoning in prohibiting drugs that cause extreme harm, physical addiction, overdoses (heroin, cocaine, alcohol).

    —Marijuana does cause extreme physical harm and physical addiction.

    “I have seen communities and families devestated by illegal drugs.” – I have too. I haven’t seen any family’s devestated by marijuana.

    —I have. Lots of them.

    “On the topic of glaucoma..” – And so does marijuana. The other drugs used don’t cancel out marijuana. It could still be used as well. Not that I think glaucoma is the most serious and pressing ailment for medical marijuana patients. Multiple sclerosis, AIDS, terminal cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, anorexia nervosa, etc. are usually in more dire need of medical marijuana, as it often helps when other methods fail.

    —So marijuana could be used in conjunction with the already proven and reliable, scientifically proven and FDA approved drugs?

    “There was a big push by the pro marijuana crowd about ten years ago to debunk Amotivational Syndrome..It was developed largely of case histories and observational reports on chronic marijuana users.” – Is the APA the “pro marijuana crowd”? Because they don’t recognize it as a disorder in any volume of the DSM. Don’t forget to mention these case histories occurred between the 60′s & 80′s.

    —-Anyone who has seen a person become addicted to marijuana has seen systematic changes in that person’s lifestyle, ambitions, motivation, and personality.

    “Prescription drugs serve a purpose I our society, marijuana does not.” – Yes, it does. One purpose is as a prescription drug. Do you realize that all prescription drugs are not healthy? The difference between illegal and prescription drugs is only semantic. Each substance has to be looked at to find out if it is safe and beneficial.

    —Marijuana has been looked at and found not to be beneficial. How many times do I need to repeat that? It is not approved for use by the FDA. It has been studied for decades and they still haven’t approved it.

    “So should we place an age cap on marijuana if it were to be legal?” – Yes, I think so. Alcohol and nicotine have one. However if there was a case of a patient who was under that age cap, and marijuana seemed to be the only treatment for their ailment, the options should be weighed to see if the patient should use marijuana.

    —When you legalize something you encourage its use. Legalize medical marijuana and more becomes available for use by people under 18 or 21 whatever age cap you wish to use. If marijuana is harmless why would you want to put n age cap on it? Is it just harmless for a 17 years old and then becomes harmless at 18? We don’t have an age cap on coffee and you compare marijuana and coffee.

    “I have seen firsthand how destructive it is” – What have you seen? Anecdotal evidence? I thought that wasn’t good enough?

    –I have had multiple personal experiences dealing with marijuana. Non anecdotal evidence, the
    Medical Journal of Australia, “Marijuana causes birth defects, fetal damage,lung cancer, long-term impairment of memory, schizophrenia, suppression of the immune system, and even leukemia in the children of marijuana-smoking mothers” (Nahas & Latour, 1992).

    “In a 1990 report, the National Transportation Safety Board studied 182 fatal truck accidents. It found that just as many of the accidents were caused by drivers using marijuana as were caused by alcohol — 12.5 percent in each case.” – First off – one report in 1990.. Not too impressive. Second, I’m not sure I understand what you’re trying to say. 12.5% of the 182 accidents were caused by marijuana, and 12.5% were caused by alcohol? Using alcohol & marijuana together impairs your driving more than using either of the substances individually. And I never said you should be able to use marijuana and drive (although it does not impair your ability to drive as much as alcohol, or in the same way).

    —First, 1990 report is impressive enough to show that marijuana does not just affect the user. It has impact and consequences on society.

    “Consider also that drug use, including marijuana, contributes to crime.” – Marijuana contributes mostly to crime in that crime occurs because it is illegal. Drug dealers fight each other (Mexico). People kill each other by the thousands daily over $. That money comes from many things but that’s what they’re after.

    —-Marijuana is illegal because it’s dangerous not dangerous because it’s illegal. California has the most liberal marijuana in America and that doesn’t seem to be curbing the drug violence there.

    “A large percentage of those arrested for crimes test positive for marijuana. Nationwide, 40 percent of adult males tested positive for marijuana at the time of their arrest.” – Correlation is not causation. Just because someone commits a crime, and has some amount marijuana in their system, doesn’t mean the marijuana caused them to commit a crime. Marijuana is detectable in the body through urine tests for much longer (~2 weeks – 1 month) than most other substances. Drug tests mainly profit from marijuana users. Users of cocaine, meth, heroin and other drugs can test clean after just a few days.

    Correlation is not causation but it is interesting to note the relationship between crime and marijuana use.

    Reply
  • June 10, 2011 at 6:10 pm
    Permalink

    “No it does not have medical value. If it did it would have been approved for medical use decades ago.” – Doctors are prescribing it, others want to, patients are requesting to use it, but you say it has no medicinal value. Looks like your opinion isn’t the last word. So you don’t think the fact that it was made illegal has to do with it not being approved for medical use? Cannabis was manufactured and sold by U.S. pharmaceutical companies from the 1880s through the 1930s. The propaganda and demonization of cannabis (politically/financially motivated) in the 30s led to it being made illegal.

    “Cannabis is one of the most studies plants in planet earth and it’s still not recognized as a medicine by the FDA.” – No, it’s not. Where are you getting this? The lack of research is why marijuana hasn’t been officially approved as a medicine. Recently there has been a lot of research but the history of marijuana empiricial research doesn’t stretch back anywhere near the length of time people have been using it as a medicine and recreational drug.

    “Do you want to legalize marijuana only if smoked or vaporized? Are you admitting that “smoking marijuana is bad for you?” – Substances typically aren’t legalized conditionally. If someone wants to smoke it, they should be able to. People can smoke tobacco, which has no health benefits, only detriments. Smoking anything (marijuana, tobacco, oregano) is at least somewhat harmful. Smoke contains carcinogens. Never said anything contrary. I’ve never even said that marijuana is 100% safe, and I don’t know a substance that is. Processed food, driving, cell phones, etc. all have risks and can be harmful. People should make their own health choices.

    “I think you realize how absurd that reasoning is and now you are parsing words.” – There’s nothing absurd about it. I’m breaking it down because you don’t seem to understand the concept of an “average” and the reality of surveys. Here’s your original quote:

    “Marijuana is more potent than at any time since scientific analysis of the drug began in the 1970s, according to a report from the University of Mississippi’s Potency Monitoring Project. The average amount of THC in marijuana, the primary psychoactive ingredient in the drug, was tested at 9.6% –more than double the potency of marijuana in 1983.”

    You say “the average amount of THC”, which does not exist. Do you mean the average in the U.S? In Mississippi? Whatever it is you mean, that “average” is based on whatever plants were tested (ex. legally seized). That’s a pretty vague average. But like I said before, the amount of marijuana someone consumes can be regulated, so the potency really doesn’t matter. An overdose is basically impossible if that’s what you’re implying.

    “Marijuana does cause extreme physical harm and physical addiction.” – According to you. For some reason you feel the need to use absolutes. Smoking it will most likely cause some physical harm. You can become dependent on it. Do you not see how ridiculous it is for you to try and come up with excuses when you could say the same for prescription drugs, alcohol, tobacco, etc. Alcohol and tobacco don’t even have medicinal value and look at the harm they cause. I guess that doesn’t matter to you?

    “So marijuana could be used in conjunction with the already proven and reliable, scientifically proven and FDA approved drugs?” – Yes. Marijuana is as scientifically “proven” for certain ailments as those other drugs. Do you really think the FDA is all-knowing? Look at all the prescription drugs that are recalled. There are many (legal) drugs that aren’t researched enough before they’re prescribed and many people suffer the side effects.

    “Anyone who has seen a person become addicted to marijuana has seen systematic changes in that person’s lifestyle, ambitions, motivation, and personality.” – I’m sure they have. But as I’ve said before and common sense implies, not everyone who uses marijuana/alcohol/etc. becomes dependent on it.

    “Marijuana has been looked at and found not to be beneficial. How many times do I need to repeat that? It is not approved for use by the FDA. It has been studied for decades and they still haven’t approved it.” – Please elaborate. Are you saying because the FDA hasn’t approved it that it’s not beneficial? There are supplements in the grocery store that the FDA hasn’t approved. You are in essence saying every doctor, every patient, and all research showing marijuana to have medicinal benefits is wrong? Is that correct?

    “When you legalize something you encourage its use.” – Wrong. Does the government encourage the use of alcohol? Tobacco? Not in my opinion. They give you the option of using them.

    “If marijuana is harmless why would you want to put n age cap on it?” – I never said it was 100% harmless, especially when smoked. Research suggests it can be quite harmful the development of a teenager child, like many other substances.

    “Is it just harmless for a 17 years old and then becomes harmless at 18? We don’t have an age cap on coffee and you compare marijuana and coffee.” – Is alcohol harmless to a 20 year old? Use your head. We don’t have an age cap on coffee, as caffeine is a relatively safe psychoactive. Would you give your children coffee?

    “Marijuana causes birth defects, fetal damage,lung cancer, long-term impairment of memory, schizophrenia, suppression of the immune system, and even leukemia in the children of marijuana-smoking mothers” (Nahas & Latour, 1992).” – 3 of those problems have to do with pregnant mothers using marijuana, I never said that was ok. Research has shown that memory function will return after abstinence of use. Research has suggested both that marijuana can cause psychological predispositions to surface and the opposite. It’s not absolute. The same with immune system issues. More research needs to be done, although people will always try and use research findings to their advantage. All research is biased.

    “First, 1990 report is impressive enough to show that marijuana does not just affect the user. It has impact and consequences on society.” – Where’s that honesty? Let’s stay on topic. That report discusses marijuana use and driving. Which I never advocated, nor do many proponents of medical marijuana. So that report’s not even relevant to the discussion.

    “Marijuana is illegal because it’s dangerous not dangerous because it’s illegal. California has the most liberal marijuana in America and that doesn’t seem to be curbing the drug violence there.” – You’re confused. Do you have any idea why cannabis (including hemp, an industrial product, with no psychoactive properties) was made illegal? Do some research. I don’t know the statistics on drug violence in CA, and you didn’t bother to provide any. I do know that marijuana is not the only drug, and that other drugs like heroin and cocaine are more often correlated with violence, be it from use or distribution.

    “Correlation is not causation but it is interesting to note the relationship between crime and marijuana use.” – I don’t think it’s that interesting, because as I said, the relationship could be only coincidental. Maybe you don’t understand the concept of correlation. Eating bananas could be correlated with developing cancer, and it doesn’t necessary mean anything relevant or worth discussing.

    Reply
  • June 11, 2011 at 11:54 am
    Permalink

    “No it does not have medical value. If it did it would have been approved for medical use decades ago.” – Doctors are prescribing it, others want to, patients are requesting to use it, but you say it has no medicinal value. Looks like your opinion isn’t the last word. So you don’t think the fact that it was made illegal has to do with it not being approved for medical use? Cannabis was manufactured and sold by U.S. pharmaceutical companies from the 1880s through the 1930s. The propaganda and demonization of cannabis (politically/financially motivated) in the 30s led to it being made illegal.

    —Cocaine and Heroin was also used in pharmaceutical in the United States. Thank Goodness for the creation of the FDA huh? The FDA is responsible for protecting and promoting public health. There are Doctors out there that will prescribe illegal drugs for individual to take, but a majority of the doctors in the United States won’t. The Doctors who are in charge of the organizations that you claim marijuana does the most for reject it as a medical treatment. American Medical Association, the American Cancer Society, the American Glaucoma Society, the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the very medical societies that advocate for patients with serious illnesses like cancer, glaucoma and MS, all have rejected Marijuana as a medicine.

    “Cannabis is one of the most studies plants in planet earth and it’s still not recognized as a medicine by the FDA.” – No, it’s not. Where are you getting this? The lack of research is why marijuana hasn’t been officially approved as a medicine. Recently there has been a lot of research but the history of marijuana empiricial research doesn’t stretch back anywhere near the length of time people have been using it as a medicine and recreational drug.

    Where did I get that from? Oh a source I think you would agree with…

    420 times
    NORML.

    http://blog.norml.org/2010/07/01/theres-been-over-20000-studies-on-marijuana-what-is-it-that-scientists-do-not-yet-know/
    http://the420times.com/2010/07/there-have-been-over-20000-studies-done-on-cannabis/

    –Maybe they were just high when they wrote that?

    “Do you want to legalize marijuana only if smoked or vaporized? Are you admitting that “smoking marijuana is bad for you?” – Substances typically aren’t legalized conditionally. If someone wants to smoke it, they should be able to. People can smoke tobacco, which has no health benefits, only detriments. Smoking anything (marijuana, tobacco, oregano) is at least somewhat harmful. Smoke contains carcinogens. Never said anything contrary. I’ve never even said that marijuana is 100% safe, and I don’t know a substance that is. Processed food, driving, cell phones, etc. all have risks and can be harmful. People should make their own health choices.

    –“Substances typically aren’t legalized conditionally” Exactly. People can smoke tobacco if they want to but Marijuana smoke has been found to contain 4 times the amount of tar and 7 times the amount of carcinogens. Why legalize something that we know is harmful to you?

    “I think you realize how absurd that reasoning is and now you are parsing words.” – There’s nothing absurd about it. I’m breaking it down because you don’t seem to understand the concept of an “average” and the reality of surveys. Here’s your original quote:
    “Marijuana is more potent than at any time since scientific analysis of the drug began in the 1970s, according to a report from the University of Mississippi’s Potency Monitoring Project. The average amount of THC in marijuana, the primary psychoactive ingredient in the drug, was tested at 9.6% –more than double the potency of marijuana in 1983.”
    You say “the average amount of THC”, which does not exist. Do you mean the average in the U.S? In Mississippi? Whatever it is you mean, that “average” is based on whatever plants were tested (ex. legally seized). That’s a pretty vague average. But like I said before, the amount of marijuana someone consumes can be regulated, so the potency really doesn’t matter. An overdose is basically impossible if that’s what you’re implying.

    —I think my idea of an average is correct and on par with most individuals with knowledge of the subject. If you have a sample size large enough it is completely plausible to come to an average amount of THC.

    “Marijuana does cause extreme physical harm and physical addiction.” – According to you. For some reason you feel the need to use absolutes. Smoking it will most likely cause some physical harm. You can become dependent on it. Do you not see how ridiculous it is for you to try and come up with excuses when you could say the same for prescription drugs, alcohol, tobacco, etc? Alcohol and tobacco don’t even have medicinal value and look at the harm they cause. I guess that doesn’t matter to you?

    –You just agreed with what I said in quotes. Should I leave out the word extreme? You use the term “some physical harm” and “can become dependent” I use absolute terms you use relative terms but you do admit marijuana is harmful.

    “So marijuana could be used in conjunction with the already proven and reliable, scientifically proven and FDA approved drugs?” – Yes. Marijuana is as scientifically “proven” for certain ailments as those other drugs. Do you really think the FDA is all-knowing? Look at all the prescription drugs that are recalled. There are many (legal) drugs that aren’t researched enough before they’re prescribed and many people suffer the side effects.

    —No I don’t think the FDA is infallible. When they get it wrong they fix it. It is the organization that is in charge of regulating our medications. Marijuana has been studies and found not to meet the standards set forth.

    “Marijuana has been looked at and found not to be beneficial. How many times do I need to repeat that? It is not approved for use by the FDA. It has been studied for decades and they still haven’t approved it.” – Please elaborate. Are you saying because the FDA hasn’t approved it that it’s not beneficial? There are supplements in the grocery store that the FDA hasn’t approved. You are in essence saying every doctor, every patient, and all research showing marijuana to have medicinal benefits is wrong? Is that correct?

    —There are supplements in grocery stores not approved by the FDA and if they are found to be harmful, like marijuana, by the FDA they are pulled from the store shelves.

    “When you legalize something you encourage its use.” – Wrong.

    —Not wrong. If you legalize something you make it more available to the public and more people are going to use it. That’s common sense, just like obtaining an average.

    –You admit marijuana is harmful, especially when smoked (which would be impossible to regulate), driving, to teenagers, and to pregnant women and it has some correlation to violence.

    ““I never said it was 100% harmless, especially when smoked. Research suggests it can be quite harmful the development of a teenager child, like many other substances.”

    “3 of those problems have to do with pregnant mothers using marijuana; I never said that was ok.”

    “That report discusses marijuana use and driving. Which I never advocated,”

    “I do know that marijuana is not the only drug, and that other drugs like heroin and cocaine are more often correlated with violence, be it from use or distribution.”

    It’s not approved for medial use by FDA and the major societies that pro legalization groups claim it help and they don’t support its legalization. American Medical Association, the American Cancer Society, the American Glaucoma Society, the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

    We can’t just take whatever we want to make us feel better when we are sick. I’m sure Heroin, or cocaine, or PCP might help a person with AIDS or cancer but we can’t legalize that. We have plenty of other safe and approved medical options.

    The number one job of goverment is to protect its citizens, unfortunatly sometime they have to protect them from themselves.

    Reply
  • June 15, 2011 at 4:07 pm
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    “Cocaine and Heroin was also used in pharmaceutical in the United States.” – Heroin is synthetic morphine. Morphine and other opiates are still used as pharmaceuticals. Prescription drugs containing opiates (hydrocodone, oxycodone) are one of the leading causes of drug abuse and overdose in the U.S. Stunning job the FDA is doing there.

    “http://blog.norml.org/2010/07/01/theres-been-over-20000-studies-on-marijuana-what-is-it-that-scientists-do-not-yet-know/” – So you post this link to say that many studies have been done? I’m guessing you reject the part of the article that says these studies find marijuana to be relatively safe and medically beneficial? Yes, marijuana has been studied.. how much? Many of the organizations that refuse to allow it to be accepted as a medicine because there is not enough research on its effects and benefits.

    “People can smoke tobacco if they want to but Marijuana smoke has been found to contain 4 times the amount of tar and 7 times the amount of carcinogens.” – Some studies (probably 1) say that marijuana smoke contains that amount of tar and carcinogens, yet you continue to quote that number like it’s scientific fact. It’s not as cut and dry as “tobacco smoke” & “marijuana smoke”. Marijuana smoke is sometimes filtered through water pipes, unlike tobacco smoke. And as I’ve said before, SMOKING IS NOT THE ONLY WAY TO ADMINISTER MARIJUANA.

    “Why legalize something that we know is harmful to you?” – Why legalize alcohol and tobacco? Because they typically don’t harm/kill you intensely and quickly enough to reasonably keep them prohibited. And such as large number of people use the substances.

    “I think my idea of an average is correct and on par with most individuals with knowledge of the subject. If you have a sample size large enough it is completely plausible to come to an average amount of THC.” – I don’t know what your idea of an average is, nor do I care. The fact remains that you did not explain what the average is made up of. All marijuana in existence on Earth? You speak of sample size, do you know “where” the sample came from? My implication is that the sample is not representative. We are talking about an illegal plant.. this doesn’t seem like the kind of thing that is going to readily available to test. People aren’t going to volunteer their marijuana to the government to be tested. What plants where tested? This is aside from the fact that if you’re going to quote statistics, be prepared to say what they mean and from where they come.

    “You just agreed with what I said in quotes. Should I leave out the word extreme? You use the term “some physical harm” and “can become dependent” I use absolute terms you use relative terms but you do admit marijuana is harmful.” – No. I agreed that smoking it (or anything else) can cause harm. You said “does cause” addiction, which is an absolute statement. I said it can cause dependence. You use absolute terms to try and appear more correct or knowledgeable. I use relative terms because I am honest and considerate of the complexity of the issue.

    “No I don’t think the FDA is infallible. When they get it wrong they fix it. It is the organization that is in charge of regulating our medications. Marijuana has been studies and found not to meet the standards set forth.” – Have you checked on the prescription drug issues in the U.S.? I guess they’re still working on that one.

    “Not wrong. If you legalize something you make it more available to the public and more people are going to use it. That’s common sense, just like obtaining an average.” – Second sentence, yes. But making something more available to the public is not synonymous with encouraging its use. The government doesn’t encourage the use of alcohol. Third sentence, very wrong. Obtaining an average isn’t common sense, it’s a mathematics process. What’s your degree in..?

    “You admit marijuana is harmful, especially when smoked (which would be impossible to regulate), driving, to teenagers, and to pregnant women and it has some correlation to violence.” – It’s also impossible to regulate how one uses alcohol. If alcohol is poured into the anus (people have died from this) it goes directly into the bloodstream and alcohol poisoning will most likely occur. Binge drinking is very dangerous. The government doesn’t try to regulate how people use alcohol. It assumes the majority of people will try and use it in a safe way (many don’t). I’ll admit much more damning things about alcohol, but they’re mostly public knowledge. I admitted the correlation, then went on to say correlation doesn’t directly mean anything important.

    “We can’t just take whatever we want to make us feel better when we are sick. I’m sure Heroin, or cocaine, or PCP might help a person with AIDS or cancer but we can’t legalize that. We have plenty of other safe and approved medical options.” – I really doubt cocaine or PCP would help a person with AIDS or cancer, they’d probably make things a lot worse. Heroin would probably help, since it’s a strong analgesic, but an overdose might happen. Those substances are similar to marijuana only in their legal status.

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  • June 15, 2011 at 4:55 pm
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    I smoked and ate MJ for years and have quit several times for long periods (9 years once) without any kind of withdrawal symptoms.
    I have advanced osteoarthritis all through my back and shoulders and sciatica and have had a fusion of the L5, S1 vertebrae.
    When I get tired of going through the muscle spasms and sleepless nights due to them and pain I will probably turn back to it. I’ve tried everything out there for pain and muscle spasms but nothing helps as well as a couple puffs (not a whole joint) of MJ.

    Anyone who thinks/says MJ is addicting is ignorant.
    Anyone who thinks/says the majority of doctors or pharmaceutical companies has your best interests at heart is ignorant.
    Anyone who hasn’t tried MJ and says/thinks it’s bad for you is ignorant and it stands a good chance they are an alcoholic.
    These people that check themselves into treatment who are self proclaimed (MJ addicts) are just looking for something legal to make them feel good and most have been given an ultimatum by loved ones or the court system.

    It’s all a matter on money. If legalized pharmaceutical companies, local, state and government law enforcement, doctors and lawyers among others stand to lose millions of dollars, not to mention the corrupt officials who make a killing from the confiscated goods.

    I think timetorun is just a narrow minded hater and/or one of the above.

    This will probably be my only post here because I will not argue with ignorance. I have all the proof I need.

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  • June 16, 2011 at 8:11 am
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    Sick of ignorance has it right.

    Seems like to me that most grocery stores are against these farmers markets that sell fresh vegetableses as well. They even use many of the same arguments “don’t know what might be on it or in it.” “Not approved by health departments and on and on.” How are they the same. Of course the darn Dr’s and PHARMS don’t want people to be able to grow or purchase their meds from anyone but themselves. Why would that surprize anyone. Like ‘Sick of ignorance’ says– ITS ABOUT THE MONEY!

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  • June 22, 2011 at 2:34 pm
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    The primary way that Arkansas conservatives use medical marijuana is to lie thru their teeth by accusing their primary opponents of favoring medical marijuana. This is how Jeremy Hutchinson won his election last year.

    Reply

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