Our Time: Debate Over Marijuana Rages On
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Our Time: Debate Over Marijuana Rages On
Posted by CN Staff on July 07, 2009 at 07:11:45 PT
By Jane Glenn Haas, The Orange County Register
Source: News & Observer
California -- Reefer Madness! Is marijuana a medical benefit or just a high time for stoners? And should California - where cannabis is legal for medical use and where dispensaries pay $100 million in taxes annually - legalize marijuana for everyone's use?California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who's looking for tax money under every rock and tree trunk, says "I think it's time for debate. I think all of those ideas of creating extra revenues - I'm always for an open debate."
Anna Boyce says the governor is blowing smoke. A longtime activist for the medical use of marijuana, Boyce says she's not a full supporter of legalizing the herb."Besides, what difference would it make in California? Medical marijuana is not legal nationally and that's where the change has to be made," she says.The senior activist - she won the Good Character Award from her hometown of Mission Viejo, Calif., in 2009 - sees this as a senior issue.Marijuana, derived from the buds and leaves of the cannabis plant, contains more than 400 chemicals, says a report in the magazine "This Week." One of these chemicals, THC, works its way through the bloodstream to the brain, producing a relaxing "high."The herb is used to treat glaucoma, diabetes, multiple sclerosis and high blood pressure, as well as various AIDS symptoms and chemotherapy.It can impede short term memory, physical coordination and, like tobacco, contains carcinogens. Federal law says marijuana must be a controlled substance.Despite the federal restrictions, 14 states have voted to legalize use of marijuana for medicinal purposes, with California the leader in 1996.Today, an estimated 250,000 patients receive cannabis at various dispensaries - 180 in Los Angeles alone. Certain doctors routinely authorize marijuana for their patients.While she's calling for a national bill, Boyce, a registered nurse, acknowledges it will probably never happen."Big pharma will convince people it should not be legalized," she says."There's no money in it for them. You can grow it in your back yard."Ah, little wonder this is a political potboiler.State Sen. Mark Leno has introduced a resolution that urges the U.S. Congress and President Barack Obama's administration to align national policy with the state laws legalizing the herb.California Assemblyman Tom Ammiano says legalizing marijuana for general use in California could add $1 billion to the tax coffers. His bill to do that comes up next year.Meanwhile, the seniors keep on smoking in California.At a recent Laguna Woods, Calif., rally for medical marijuana supporters, Margo Bouer, wife of the former mayor, acknowledged she smokes cannabis for relief. She has multiple sclerosis."You can't just go out and buy this stuff," Boyce says. "You have to get an ID card from the state health department."Smoking cannabis is less harmful than smoking tobacco or drinking alcohol, she insists."Yet people shut their eyes and their ears. The refuse to investigate the full range of benefits from this magnificent herb," she says."This is not 'reefer madness' and people have to stop thinking that way."California justices apparently agree with her. On Thursday, a state appeals court ruled medical marijuana growers and patients should be allowed to sue police over illegal raids of their properties.And one medical marijuana dispenser said earlier in the week he is now making home deliveries to seniors with ID cards allowing them to use cannabis. One of the patients likened ordering the herb to "ordering pizza only better."Jane Glenn Haas writes for The Orange County (Calif.) Register. Source: News & Observer (Raleigh, NC)Author: Jane Glenn Haas, The Orange County RegisterPublished: July 7, 2009Copyright: 2009 The News and Observer Publishing CompanyWebsite: Medical Marijuana Archives
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Comment #6 posted by RevRayGreen on July 07, 2009 at 21:22:34 PT
#5 so true
reefer gladness over reefer sadness.....
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Comment #5 posted by John Tyler on July 07, 2009 at 21:00:25 PT
everyone is sick
You should be able to get a medical marijuana card if you are sick of cannabis prohibition.
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Comment #4 posted by RevRayGreen on July 07, 2009 at 20:58:27 PT
When it comes to medical marijuana
as an adult,anyone over 40+ should allowed. When they push Viagra or the next feel good drug on TV, with crazy side effects, marijuana is a sane choice.
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Comment #3 posted by Hope on July 07, 2009 at 20:34:57 PT
Thanks a lot, Anna Boyce. 
Not."Anna Boyce says the governor is blowing smoke. A longtime activist for the medical use of marijuana, Boyce says she's not a full supporter of legalizing the herb."This is what a lot of activists have dreaded. We supported the medical use... but the medical users won't support the rest of us that are sick of the arrests and persecution of everyone.
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on July 07, 2009 at 18:29:36 PT
OT: About Michael Jackson's Funeral
I watched the Memorial all afternoon. I don't own any Michael Jackson CDs and yet I knew the songs. Michael Jackson was a tormented but talented person. When I think of Michael Jackson in the future I will always remember his daughter Paris and her words today.
 Daughter "Paris" Tearful Goodbye
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on July 07, 2009 at 08:39:52 PT
OT: Michael Jackson
Say Say Say - Paul McCartney & Michael Jackson (RIP)
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