Medical Marijuana on Probation? Courts Saying Yes!
Probation is a far preferable alternative to incarceration for minor crimes. It’s 20 times cheaper for the state, which doesn’t have to pay to keep a low-level offender behind bars. That money can then be spent fixing schools or filling potholes, making life better for citizens.
And probation is better in every way conceivable for the offender, who can live at home and go to work and otherwise not have his or her life utterly disrupted by a spell behind bars, while still paying a debt to society.
But what if one of the terms of your probation was that you had to live in chronic pain, suffer abdominal cramps or be unable to sleep or eat? In other words, what if the state had the power to tell you, sure, you can stay out of jail, but you can’t use your medication—and if you do, and you’re caught, you’ll go there anyway?
You can imagine the outcry if the criminal justice system instructed AIDS patients to ditch their retrovirals or cancer patients to take a few years’ break from radiation. Yet the state can, and does, impose such restrictions if the medication is medical marijuana.
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Everything You Want to Know about Pot’s Health Effects
NEW YORK (AP) — It can almost certainly ease chronic pain and might help some people sleep, but it’s also likely to raise the risk of getting schizophrenia and might trigger heart attacks.
Those are among the conclusions about marijuana reached by a federal advisory panel in a report released Thursday.
The experts also called for a national effort to learn more about marijuana and its chemical cousins, including similarly acting compounds called cannabinoids.
The current lack of scientific information “poses a public health risk,” said the report , released by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. Patients, health care professionals and policy makers need more evidence to make sound decisions, it said.
Several factors have limited research. While the federal government has approved some medicines containing ingredients found in marijuana, it still classifies marijuana as illegal and imposes restrictions on research. So scientists have to jump through bureaucratic hoops that some find daunting, the report said.
Can Cannabis Rescue the Opioid Overdose Epidemic in 2017?
2017 needs to be the year we fight back against the opioid epidemic. We will use the greatest weapon—cannabis.
Is this wishful thinking? Is there scientific justification to this speculation?
My wife is a resident physician in Seattle’s trendy Capitol Hill neighborhood. Early in her residency, she was musing with her colleagues over their challenging patient interactions. I chimed in, “How many of your patients are just after pain medication?” One of the residents looked down and shook his head. “Too many. And if we don’t give [opioids] to them, they just keep switching their doctor until they find someone who will.”
And those are the high functioning opioid abusers. Dirty needles on the sidewalk or in empty green spaces off Seattle’s web of multi-use trails are mere shadows of those that have spiraled to heroin.
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