cannabisnews.com: Medical Marijuana Issue Heats Up 










††Medical Marijuana Issue Heats Up 

Posted by CN Staff on February 09, 2005 at 08:36:48 PT
By Mary Massingale, State Capitol Bureau†
Source: State Journal-Register†

As a state lawmaker pushes his proposal to legalize medical-use marijuana, a former drug-policy adviser to President Bush is touring Illinois lecturing against the practice.The conflict reached a head this week, when Rep. Larry McKeon, D-Chicago, challenged Dr. Andrea Barthwell to a public debate about medical marijuana. Barthwell declined the challenge.
"I have no need to engage in street theater," she said.McKeon charged that Barthwell's seminars appear to be a smear campaign against his proposal. The lawmaker - who is living with AIDS - said House Bill 407 attempts to improve the quality of life for terminally ill patients struggling with the debilitating side effects of chemotherapy and other treatments."This is about dealing with health problems that traditional medications have failed at," McKeon said.The proposal would allow individuals with a debilitating medical condition or their caretakers to own up to 12 cannabis plants and 21/2 ounces of usable cannabis. Individuals would be registered confidentially with the Illinois Department of Human Services and receive an identification card exempting them from arrest, prosecution or penalty.The measure also allows for the creation of nonprofit organizations to grow the limited amount of marijuana plants for registered patients.Law enforcement officials and anti-drug advocates charge that legalizing the plant would lead to increased marijuana use. Federal law prohibits possession of the plant, but the U.S. Supreme Court will rule this year on whether federal officials can prosecute individuals who use medical marijuana.Ten states allow marijuana to be used for medicinal purposes: Alaska, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont and Washington.McKeon sponsored a similar proposal a year ago that allowed six cannabis plants and 1 ounce of usable cannabis. That measure was banished to a subcommittee of the House Health Care Availability and Access Committee. This year, McKeon's legislation is slated for the House Human Services Committee."I want to move it out of committee to the House floor and then hold it on the House floor until we've had a reasonable amount of time to do the education and outreach to get further feedback," McKeon said.Barthwell said she already is educating the public, as she travels the state presenting the Illinois Marijuana Lectures. Barthwell initiated the free, parent-aimed series last month with lectures in Peoria, Bloomington and Decatur, and continues this week with stops in Alton, Belleville and Mount Vernon."A crude plant is definitely not a medicine," Barthwell said. "A surgeon doesn't come to a patient recovering from surgery and give them a pipe of opium - you give them a derivative."The Food and Drug Administration has not approved marijuana for medical use. A 1978 Illinois law allows participants in federally approved research projects to use medical marijuana, but that law never has been implemented.Law enforcement officials also object to a provision of HB407 allowing local and state officers to be fired for pointing federal officials toward a registered medical marijuana user."That, to us, is pretty Draconian," said Laimutis Nargelenas of the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police.A former Los Angeles police officer, McKeon said he is willing to sit down with law enforcement groups to come up with a compromise."This is not a crime bill," McKeon said. "This is a health-care bill."Note: State legislator wants debate with doctor who is challenging practice.Source: State Journal-Register (IL)Author: Mary Massingale, State Capitol BureauPublished: Wednesday, February 9, 2005Copyright: 2005 The State Journal-RegisterContact: letters sj-r.comWebsite: http://www.sj-r.com/Related Articles & Web Site:Medical Marijuana Information Linkshttp://freedomtoexhale.com/medical.htmMedical-Use Marijuana Hot Topic http://cannabisnews.com/news/thread20215.shtmlMarijuana Bill Set Aside Before It Gets a Hearing http://cannabisnews.com/news/thread18436.shtmlMedical Marijuana and Its Witless Enemieshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread18415.shtml 

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Comment #14 posted by websurfer2 on February 16, 2005 at 17:16:48 PT
someone should file a foia on this dame!
Someone (who knows how) should file a freedom of information act request on Andrea Barthwell to find out if she is being paid by anyone in the current administration. After the recent "outing" of Armstrong Williams as a paid mouthpiece for the Bush administration, he said they were lots of others doing it as well. 3 more have been revealed since then, including a gay prostitute named jeff gannon aka jim guckert. Andrea may well be funded with our taxpayer dollars. It sure seems like quite a coincidence, that she just happens to be in Illinois when they are considering Cannabis laws, and she just happens to be talking about Medical Cannabis being a bad idea. Hmmmmm
Google news search
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Comment #13 posted by John Tyler on February 10, 2005 at 13:33:31 PT
Angela
Isnít pending legislation supposed to be debated? Debate can bring out strengths and weaknesses in arguments. Angela wonít debate because she knows she no facts only attitudes and lies.
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Comment #12 posted by OverwhelmSam on February 10, 2005 at 08:59:10 PT
Damn Righ It's Heating Up.
ONDCP has been cited by the GAO for distributing propaganda and is charged by Congress to tell whatever lies it can to brainwash the American citizens against marijuana use.Andrea's message centers around the health concerns of marijuana use, while pharmaceutical companies, blessed by the illustrious US FDA, distribute deadly and poisonous drugs to the American people without conscious. Tens of thousands of people die every year from approved drugs. No one has ever died from an overdose of marijuana. The fact is that eating disorders, a subject Ms Barthwell would do well to research, have much more of a serious impact on Americans than marijuana ever could. Marijuana should be legalized and regulated for adult use similar to the way alcohol is regulated. 
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Comment #11 posted by cannaman on February 09, 2005 at 19:11:36 PT:
the irony
I thought I would never see the day when a former LA police officer would be debating a Dr.Barthwell over medical-pot, does anyone else see the irony? Someone needs to give this woman a happy brownie or something she's really killing my buzz.
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Comment #10 posted by RadicalRuss on February 09, 2005 at 17:32:53 PT:
Change in Tactics
Does anyone else notice the change in tactics from the Drug Warriors? Used to be that marijuana was the evil demon weed with no positive value. But now after ten states legalized medipot and there was no wave of long-term pot-related illnesses following the 1960's, it seems their tack now is "it's the raw smoked plant that's harmful". They can't deny what we all know (THC is medicine), so they have to attack the delivery method. It's not the sedate stoners they hate, it's the freely-growing, easy-to-produce, home-manufactured, hand-processed, self-ingested medicine that has no patent, no packaging, no factories, no advertisements, no pharmacists, and NO PROFIT that they hate. Marinol was only the first attempt, and it has failed since it performs miserably against the smoked variety. Upcoming are the aerosolized THC, sublingual (under the tongue) THC, the THC patch, the time-released THC pill, the vaporized THC, and any other way they can think of to take a perfectly good free natural medicine and turn it into a revenue stream.
NIDA Study of Marijuana & The Brain
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Comment #9 posted by mayan on February 09, 2005 at 14:40:23 PT
Take Action!
http://www.mpp.org/IL/action.html
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Comment #8 posted by mayan on February 09, 2005 at 14:19:34 PT
"Pretty Draconian"
"I have no need to engage in street theater," she said.I guess Barfwell had enough on Montel!"A crude plant is definitely not a medicine," Barthwell said. "A surgeon doesn't come to a patient recovering from surgery and give them a pipe of opium - you give them a derivative."So she's alright with hashish?Law enforcement officials also object to a provision of HB407 allowing local and state officers to be fired for pointing federal officials toward a registered medical marijuana user."That, to us, is pretty Draconian," said Laimutis Nargelenas of the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police.Locking the sick and dying in a cage for using a plant is "pretty draconian".
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Comment #7 posted by sixtyfps on February 09, 2005 at 10:16:46 PT
War Crime Casualties on Our Own Soil!
"A crude plant is definitely not a medicine," Barthwell said. "A surgeon doesn't come to a patient recovering from surgery and give them a pipe of opium - you give them a derivative."And of course she HAS to make allusions to opium; that ought to raise red flags in ANY thinking brain. Cannabis is safer than anything you can buy in a grocery store if you have access to a vaporizer. It's also far more effective in its 'crude' form than in a pooped-out patented derivative. Why make the middle-men even richer? This Piece of Human Detritus is brandishing the Engorged Phallus of Industry in the face of The People, and they know no better than to bend at the knee to lap up the mess!This Barthwell character is certainly getting big bucks from the gnarled hands under her table. The sooner the debate, the better condition humanity will be in.
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Comment #6 posted by kaptinemo on February 09, 2005 at 09:28:45 PT:
Thank you for posting this, FoM
I didn't know if we could, so I refrained from trying. This could get very, very interesting as time goes on. This issue of refusing debate is placing antis squarely on the hot seat, where they've always belonged. Sooner or later, "Dr." Barthwell will encounter a reformer she can't duck. Who will rhetorically slice her to ribbons...and she won't have Uncle to cover for her this time.
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Comment #5 posted by Hope on February 09, 2005 at 09:17:36 PT
It's probably part of the "contract"
they made with the State when they hired on as State officers. Upholding State law or something. Something about the State Constitution, perhaps?
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on February 09, 2005 at 09:07:38 PT
dongenero
I'm with you! 
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Comment #3 posted by dongenero on February 09, 2005 at 09:00:32 PT

call to action
This would be a good time for any Illinois residents to contact their state representatives and urge their support of House Bill 407.The comment by Nargelenas of the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police that it would be draconian to fire police officers for pointing the feds toward med cannabis users is pretty ironic. If anything here is draconian, it's the current marijuana prohibtion! Firing state jurisdiction police officers for failing to recognize state law sounds quite reasonable to me.
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Comment #2 posted by goneposthole on February 09, 2005 at 08:49:33 PT

throw Andrea a towel
She's all wet. Then she'll have a towel to throw in, she's all washed up.
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on February 09, 2005 at 08:38:37 PT

Just a Note
This article starts off the same way as the article I just posted but it is expanded and I thought it was worth posting.
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