Marijuana Rhetoric Was Off Base

Marijuana Rhetoric Was Off Base
Posted by CN Staff on April 12, 2005 at 12:47:32 PT
Guest Viewpoint By Phil Barnhart 
Source: Register-Guard
State Sen. Floyd Prozanski and I appreciate that Michael Spasaro and Jim Feldkamp (guest viewpoint, April 4) agree with Prozanski's earlier column on the methamphetamine crisis. We do not agree with the views expressed by Spasaro and Feldkamp, however, on medicinal marijuana. We regret that former federal law enforcement officers such as Spasaro and Feldkamp don't recognize the constitutional rights of states to do the will of their citizens.
In 1970, Congress banned the use of medical marijuana when it passed the Controlled Substances Act, restructuring federal drug laws in the process. In 1998, Oregon's voters passed Measure 67, the Oregon Medical Marijuana Act. Oregon's law allows medicinal marijuana for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, cachexia, cancer, glaucoma, HIV-AIDS, nausea, severe pain and seizures. Many patients who suffer from these conditions support the use of this medicine, as do many scientific researchers and a majority of Oregon voters. Letting doctors treat patients with a proven drug in no way endorses the recreational use of that drug. After all, the Legislature lets hospitals use morphine and other opiates to ease pain and suffering, but this does not condone or encourage the use of another opiate, heroin. We must also set the record straight with regard to Spasaro and Feldkamp's accusation that Prozanski and I have sponsored bills on medical marijuana, thereby sending the "wrong message." Neither the senator nor I have ever sponsored a medical marijuana bill, though each of us has introduced bills to fight criminal activity. I did not send a "wrong message" this year by sponsoring House Bill 3297, which would create a "Smart on Crime" Task Force. Neither did I send a "wrong message" in sponsoring House Joint Resolution 11, which urges Congress to restrict access to the components of metham- phetamine. And I certainly sent no "wrong messages" about illicit drugs when I prosecuted illegal traffickers as a Lane County assistant district attorney in 1972 and 1973. Prozanski has served as a prosecutor since 1987, and he currently serves on the governor's Meth Task Force. Having spent 15 years as a forensic psychologist and 20 years as a board member of Addiction Counseling and Education Services Inc. (now known as Emergence), I have expertise on the harmful effects of illicit drugs. As a legislator, I bring that expertise to bear by working with Prozanski to provide needed leadership in reducing substance abuse in our communities. We will continue to recognize the indisputable medicinal benefits of marijuana in treating certain kinds of patients - benefits that many scientific studies have verified. And we will continue to show compassion to the sick, while respecting the will of the Oregon voters. We appreciate Spasaro and Feldkamp's support as we move forward to address the methamphetamine crisis. We also appreciate that Spasaro and Feldkamp endorse our efforts to educate children about the harmful effects of illegal drugs. We will never forget that truth and facts are our best weapons to minimize the harm caused by dangerous drugs. Political grandstanding has no place in this important enterprise. Recall that Spasaro opposed me and Feldkamp opposed U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio in the last election. Phil Barnhart, D-Eugene, represents District 11 in the Oregon House of Representatives. His e-mail address is:  rep.philbarnhart Source: Register-Guard, The (OR) Author: Phil Barnhart Published: April 12, 2005Copyright: 2005 The Register-GuardContact: rgletters guardnet.comWebsite: Articles:Prohibition on Marijuana Does More Harm Bill Sends Wrong Drug Message
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on April 13, 2005 at 08:19:42 PT
Related Portion of Article from Tennessee
Survey Shows Support for Medical MarijuanaApril 13, 2005By Lesli Bales-Sherrod of The Daily Times StaffResidents of Tennessee's 8th Senatorial District support permitting physician-prescribed medical marijuana use.The response to that question on Sen. Raymond Finney's survey distributed throughout Blount and Sevier counties was the only one that surprised Finney, he said in a telephone interview Tuesday.``They may have been more opposed to it if all the facts were on the table,'' he said.On the other hand, Finney said the closeness of that vote -- 51 percent in favor versus 41 percent against -- and others on the nonscientific survey reflect the divided nature of the country. ``Understand how difficult this division in thought makes it on your leaders at all levels of government,'' Finney wrote in his e-newsletter Friday, in which he released the results of 495 surveys returned to his office. ``Nearly half of citizens will be displeased no matter which way a vote is cast.''Complete Article:
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Comment #8 posted by mayan on April 12, 2005 at 16:03:15 PT
Get A Clue
Political grandstanding has no place in this important enterprise. Recall that Spasaro opposed me and Feldkamp opposed U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio in the last election.The people of Oregon have already shown their disapproval of Spasaro and Feldkamp. When will they get a clue? 
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Comment #7 posted by FoM on April 12, 2005 at 15:53:25 PT
The one from the Alligator.
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Comment #6 posted by Sukoi on April 12, 2005 at 15:51:19 PT
You're welcome, I try to pass on as much as I can! Which one did you archive?
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on April 12, 2005 at 15:33:51 PT
Thank you for the links. I went ahead and archived the one article.
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Comment #4 posted by Sukoi on April 12, 2005 at 15:01:30 PT
OT: Walters is at it again...
Hard Facts About Marijuana Grab Parents' Attention Barthwell too:Former White House Official On Anti-Marijuana Tour other news:City heartlessly prepares to ban medical marijuana outlets 
Speaker to talk rights 
One in four at risk of cannabis psychosis,,1-3564-1565337,00.html 
Cannabis compound tackles blood vessel disease take testimony on anti-pot law 
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on April 12, 2005 at 14:29:29 PT
Good luck tomorrow!
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Comment #2 posted by siege on April 12, 2005 at 14:13:30 PT
Please distribute this memo widely. Forward it to family and friends
in Tennessee, or ask them to visit today.
======================================================================TO:   Tennessee residents*FROM:  Ryan Grim, MPP legislative analystDATE:  Tuesday, April 12, 2005SUBJECT: Hearing on Tennessee Medical Marijuana Act tomorrow======================================================================The Tennessee Medical Marijuana Act (S.B. 1942), introduced by Senator
Stephen Cohen (D-Memphis), will be heard tomorrow, April 13, in the
Senate General Welfare, Health and Human Resources Committee. The
committee convenes in room 12 of the legislative plaza in Nashville at
9:30 a.m., and the bill could be heard anytime thereafter. It's
crucial that the committee hear from supporters of S.B. 1942 between
now and tomorrow morning.The committee is made up of five Republicans and four Democrats, but
it is chaired by Democrat John Ford (Memphis). The battle in the
committee will be a tough one, but with enough pressure, a victory is
within reach. Please take a few moments to call the committee members to tell them
that you are a Tennesseean and that you strongly support S.B. 1942.Visit for talking points on
medical marijuana. State senators rarely hear from voters, so a few
polite phone calls can make a significant impact. Below is a list of
the committee members.John Ford, chair (D-Memphis) 
615-741-3304Diane Black, vice-chair (R-Gallatin) 
615-741-1999Rusty Crowe, secretary (R-Johnson City) 
615-741-2468Raymond Finney (R-Maryville) 
615-741-2427Randy McNally (R-Oak Ridge) 
615-741-6806Curtis S. Person, Jr. (R-Memphis) 
615-741-2419Roy Herron (D-Dresden) 
615-741-4576Rosalind Kurita (D-Clarksville) 
615-741-2374Jim Kyle (D-Memphis) 
615-741-4167Once you've called the committee members, please take a moment tovisit to send a letter to each member of
the above committee and the House Mental Health Subcommittee, where
S.B. 1942's companion (H.B. 968) will next be heard. You can also
contact your individual legislators and ask them to support the bills.
In less than two minutes, using our system, you can send a letter to
more than a dozen key legislators.Also, if you are a patient or a health care professional and would
like to testify on behalf of the bills, please e-mail ryan to
make arrangements.Please forward this list on to others in Tennessee and ask them to
take a moment to call the committee members as well. A flood of phone
calls and letters could be the difference between victory and defeat
for medical marijuana in Tennessee this session.
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on April 12, 2005 at 13:26:26 PT
DPA: An Audio Web Chat with Dr. Andrew Weil
Tuesday, April 12, 2005Best-selling author Dr. Andrew Weil will be online to chat with Drug Policy Alliance Executive Director Ethan Nadelmann on the re-release of From Chocolate to Morphine: Everything You Need to Know About Mind-Altering Drugs and The Natural Mind, two books that have been recognized as the definitive guide to legal and illegal drugs. Dr. Weil’s work has helped to frame the debate surrounding drug use in society, as well as exploding the myth that legal drugs are substantially different from illegal ones.Thursday, April 28, 2005 -- 
3 PM PST / 6 PM ESTSubmit questions to questions
before April 28, 2005About Andrew Weil:Andrew Weil, M.D., raised and educated in Philadelphia, received an A.B. degree in biology from Harvard College in 1964 and an M.D. degree from Harvard Medical School in 1968. Dr. Weil is Associate Director of the Division of Social Perspectives in Medicine at the University Of Arizona College of Medicine and has a private practice in natural and preventive medicine in Tucson. He is an expert in the traditional use of mind altering substances, the different effects of various legal and illegal drugs and holistic health. Dr. Weil is author of The Natural Mind; The Marriage of the Sun and Moon; Health and Healing; Natural Health, Natural Medicine, and From Chocolate to Morphine: Everything You Need to Know About Mind-Altering Drugs.About Ethan Nadelmann:Ethan Nadelmann is the founder and executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, the leading organization in the United States promoting alternatives to the "war on drugs."
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