Scientific Review says Cannabis Schedule I Classification Is Not Tenable
A new scientific review in The Open Neurology Journal questions cannabis’ place as a Schedule I drug under the federal Controlled Substances Act.
Reviewers from the University of California at San Diego and the University of California, Davis went over several recent clinical trials on the safety and effectiveness of cannabis.
“Evidence is accumulating that cannabinoids may be useful medicine for certain indications,” the review concluded. “Control of nausea and vomiting and the promotion of weight gain in chronic inanition are already licensed uses of oral THC (dronabinol capsules). Recent research indicates that cannabis may also be effective in the treatment of painful peripheral neuropathy and muscle spasticity from conditions such as multiple sclerosis. Other indications have been proposed, but adequate clinical trials have not been conducted.
“… The classification of marijuana as a Schedule I drug as well as the continuing controversy as to whether or not cannabis is of medical value are obstacles to medical progress in this area. Based on evidence currently available the Schedule I classification is not tenable; it is not accurate that cannabis has no medical value, or that information on safety is lacking. It is true cannabis has some abuse potential, but its profile more closely resembles drugs in Schedule III (where codeine and dronabinol are listed). The continuing conflict between scientific evidence and political ideology will hopefully be reconciled in a judicious manner.”
Dr. Igor Grant was the lead author of the review, and he is director of the Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research, which has done several FDA-approved ‘gold standard’ clinical trials on cannabis.
The fact is the federal government is the only entity left holding on to this ridiculous fantasy that cannabis has no medical value. And in the meantime they are hurting millions of patients by restricting access and research.
Company in Israel Develops Cannabis Plant without the High
Tikun Olam, a company in Israel, has developed a marijuana plant that has no THC in it. For some medical marijuana patients, the “high” that comes from THC is not needed, or even wanted. It depends on their ailment(s).
While there are over 60 cannabinoids in the marijuana plant, one in particular has been shown to have multiple medical properties, including an anti-inflammatory effect. That chemical is Cannabidiol, or CBD.
"CBD plants are available in different forms all over the world," said Zack Klein, head of development at Tikun Olam, adding that the company's plant is free of THC and very high in CBD. He says they have developed Avidekel, a cannabis strain that contains 15.8 % CBD and only traces of THC, less than 1%.
According to Raphael Mechoulam, a professor of medicinal chemistry at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, this is the first non-THC strain developed in Israel. "It is possible that (Avidekel's) CBD to THC ratio is the highest among medical marijuana companies in the world, but the industry is not very organized, so one cannot keep exact track of what each company is doing," he said.
Ruth Gallily of the Hebrew University who works for the company and has been studying CBD for more than 12 years, says, "The cannabis plant, enriched with CBD, can be used for treating diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, colitis, liver inflammation, heart disease and diabetes."
Marijuana with no THC can be very helpful to people who have a lot of stuff to do during the day, but don’t want to be high or in pain.
Cannabis is an incredibly versatile plant, and we have only seen part of what it can do. If the government would just get out of the way, marijuana could be helping so many people.
Colombia Decriminalizes Cocaine and Marijuana, As Latin American Momentum for Drug Policy Reform Continues
Medical Marijuana Businessman in Montana Suing a Lot of People
Jason Christ, who gained a measure of fame in Montana a few years ago with his traveling, one-day medical marijuana clinics, is now embroiled in more than a dozen lawsuits with everyone from the Missoula County Attorney’s Office to his former partners and competitors.
Jason filed 13 lawsuits in 2011, and has been involved in more than 1,300 pleadings in 25 civil and one criminal case. “The court called plaintiff a ‘difficult litigant,’ based solely on the number of pleadings, not on the merits of those papers,” read court documents.
In court papers Christ says he is beset on all sides by law enforcement and officials and the city and county have lost him income, “affected his bodily functions” and forced him to camp “down a vast network of unimproved dirt roads.”
Mr. Christ also has attempted to gain redress from the state’s Governor and Attorney General, all to no avail. “The AG has never returned the plaintiff’s calls,” says a court document.
Missoula County Attorney Fred Van Valkenburg said he assumes the court will dismiss the lawsuit “at some point.” It names as one defendant a “Paul” Van Valkenburg, which the county attorney said he believes is a reference to himself and “part of his (Christ’s) ineptness.”
“Basically, we disagree with all of the allegations in his complaint,” Van Valkenburg said. “And it’s just part of what we have to deal with in dealing with Mr. Christ.”
Christ is also going to trial in October for allegedly threatened employees of Verizon wireless. According to the complaint filed against him, Christ said he “was going to come down there and ‘bomb the (expletive) store.’”
Christ also says that since he is not allowed to have weapons, he is left to the mercy of the animals in the woods where he lives.
Christ wants for $1.5 million in lost business, $50 million in punitive damages, $34,000 for legal defense against frivolous lawsuits, and $26,850 as payment for defending himself.
An odd and interesting story, to say the least.
Marijuana Now the Most Popular Drug in the World
National Ban on Bath Salts, K2-like Products Continues the Folly of Prohibition
A ban on bath salts and so-called “synthetic marijuana” products is on its way to the desk of President Obama. The bill, sponsored by Senator Chuck Shumer (D-NY) bans the sale of 31 chemical substances sold online, in convenience stores and in smoke shops nationwide.
But banning these products misses a much larger point, just like the bans on harder drugs does. A ban does take it out of the hands of visible businesses. These products will now “disappear” into the dark of the black market, where use will likely continue to rise.
"We have seen bath salts involved in some of the most heinous crimes in recent months," Schumer said in a statement. Multiple reports indicate violent tendencies, panic attacks and suicidal thoughts often accompany use if these man-made drugs.
But prohibition in ineffective, no matter what substance is involved. All efforts must be directed at education. People, especially teenagers, need to know how dangerous these substances are. But instead millions of dollars will flow into the DEA budget to combat this problem with guns and agents.
The continued failure of prohibition just doesn’t seem to faze many elected officials. Chuck Shumer will act like he’s fighting for the safety of kids and families, and President Obama will sign the bill for the cameras and talk about how he is fighting drug use, but’s it’s all a sham. Nothing is being fought. Drug dealers will just have more products to make money off of.
In the end the money will flow, and the better the profit margin, the more rivals will fight each other for a share of the market. This means guns, death and innocent lives destroyed.
Drug gangs don’t need more products to make money off of, kids need to hear why they should avoid these substances.
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