Evidence Reveals Health Potential for Cannabis

Evidence Reveals Health Potential for Cannabis
Posted by CN Staff on November 03, 2005 at 12:19:48 PT
By Brent Battle, Opinion Columnist
Source: Daily O'Collegian
USA -- Recent research and public opinion make a strong case for the legalization of medicinal and recreational hemp, or marijuana. Denver residents voted 54 percent in favor of an ordinance decriminalizing city hemp laws, letting citizens possess up to one ounce, according to The Associated Press.
This is the latest in a hard-fought battle for changes in federal hemp policy, particularly the Angel Raich case over medical marijuana. Her case went to the Supreme Court in June, back-firing, with the high court saying local and state laws do not trump federal laws. Denver residents did not negate state and federal laws by passing the city ordinance.Recreational support relies on public opinion, but medicinal support weighs heavy on scientific analysis. Medical studies conducted in Canada by the University of Saskatchewan and the University of Calgary build a case for legalizing both forms of usage.The SU study states, “a synthetic cannabinoid — similar to the compounds found in marijuana, but substantially stronger — causes the growth of new neurons and reduces anxiety and depression,” according to -- http://www.medpagetoday.comThe same report said researchers at the University of Colorado manipulated the cannabinoid receptors in the brains of ferrets, hoping to one day manipulate the receptors in humans to treat HIV/AIDS patients, treat morning sickness and manage pain in other ways. In other words, the two studies re-affirm what a hemp advocate said when Denver residents approved their hemp-friendly ordinance. “We educated voters about the facts that marijuana is less harmful to the user and society than alcohol,” said Mason Tvert, campaign organizer for Safer Alternatives for Enjoyable Recreation, according to the AP.Researchers at SU said something similar. “Most so-called drugs of abuse — such as alcohol or cocaine — inhibit the growth of new neurons, said Dr. Xia Zhang,” according to the MedPage Today Web site.“Only marijuana promotes ‘neurogenesis,’” he said.This growth of new neurons occurs when high doses of a synthetic compound similar to tetra-hydro-cannabinol were administered to lab rats. THC is the chemical in hemp linked to creating the high when used recreationally.Recapping the issue — a drug that we know relieves pain for HIV/AIDS patients, reduces anxiety and depression in the average adult, is safer than alcohol in recreational usage and most recently creates a phenomenon called “neurogenesis” is illegal.Many pro-legalization activists point fingers at the corporate private sector, including the pharmaceutical, tobacco and alcohol industries—each estimated to be worth billions. Does the private sector have too much influence on government policy?Hemp is the cornerstone of the war on drugs, which has failed reducing crime and the number of drug users in prison, yet perpetuates propaganda campaigns and drug treatment programs used by law enforcement such as the Drug Abuse Resistance Education program.Prisons are not the answer. Neither is government ignorance. But they are not the only culprit. They play off the misinformed public, who knows little about how criminalizing certain substances is preventing society from providing adequate solutions to serious problems.By pushing certain substances into the black market, more criminals are created. These new criminals make larger problems, such as violent gang presence and the destruction of communities in urban areas. Law enforcement and government say the solution is to increase taxes, the police presence and build more prisons.Independent studies prove drug treatment facilities, not prisons, heal people’s addictions. Expecting law enforcement to eliminate drugs on the black market requires police to spend more time searching for drug offenders, rather than terrorists, rapists, murderers and other criminals who pose a greater threat to the sanctity of life.It’s time we did our part to inform others how the current solutions are not the best.Brent Battle is a columnist at The Daily O’Collegian. Complete Title: Evidence Reveals Genuine Health Potential for Cannabis Source: Daily O'Collegian (OK State U, OK Edu)Author: Brent Battle, Opinion ColumnistPublished: November 3, 2005Copyright: 2005 Oklahoma State UniversityContact: letters ocolly.comWebsite: http://www.ocolly.comRelated Articles & Web Site:Safer Choice Is First City To Legalize Pot Voters, Issue was Freedom of Choice Issue Gives New Meaning To Mile High City 
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on November 03, 2005 at 16:53:30 PT
They Were Great Answers
The last one made even my family that were visiting laugh!Seriously they were all very good answers.
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Comment #7 posted by mastercy on November 03, 2005 at 15:05:38 PT
the situation room
I happened to be watching the show when they read the responses of to the question of legalization. Of the five they read, not one was against the idea. I find that to be a very good sign. The times they are a changin'
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Comment #6 posted by Toker00 on November 03, 2005 at 14:47:50 PT
Done deal. They got my comments. Hey FoM,
remember that little snow-ball you started down the mountain the day you opened It's got a mind of it's own now. The DEA and FDA are lined up like bowling pins at the foot of the mountain. I'd say that snow-ball is about to make a couple of strikes!Wage peace on war. END CANNABIS PROHIBITION NOW!
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on November 03, 2005 at 14:23:15 PT
Heads Up: Right Now on CNN
Please send a response now!5 p.m. ET: Should small amounts of marijuana be legal?
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on November 03, 2005 at 14:03:09 PT
You're welcome. Many people read CNews but only a few post and that is fine. I read a Neil Young site regularly but have never posted. People must like what we are saying and that's a good thing.
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Comment #3 posted by Jim Lunsford on November 03, 2005 at 13:56:24 PT
Thank you FoM
With the number of stats you had yesterday, obviously that was indicative of a lot more people visiting this site than just a few of us "regulars" ranting on and on. Ease of communication has fueled all major changes in our society since the invention of the written tablet. One can scarcely wonder at how our society will change as a result of the ability of a few people to make such a dramatic difference. Simply by allowing people access to information so they can make an INFORMED decision about public policy, great change can come about in this world. And it is coming so very wonderfully peacefully fast!Rev Jim LunsfordFirst Cannabist ChurchPeace: Will never be achieved through violent means or thoughts
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Comment #2 posted by Jim Lunsford on November 03, 2005 at 13:12:32 PT
It Seems
that the tides of change are coming swift and furiously. People are tired of the status quo in our policies. Especially the Cannabist activists.The news concerning Denver's landmark stand, has sent a ripple of excitement through the people. And in today's internet society, geography matters little. Change is in the air, and even the media is starting to figure it out. Once that happens, the walls do indeed come tumbling down. Cannabis is the only "drug" that I know of which encourages peace and compassion with it's use. The "high" of which the DEA is so afraid of our experiencing, is one of relaxation both physically and emotionally. It is a high which encourages creative thinking and communal compassion. In short, very act of getting "high" is a spiritual experience, one different for each person. Perhaps this experience of peace and compassion is what the authorities fear. It is my belief that the people will soon be restored their right to use Cannabis in all it's forms. Regardless of what any government says. For if enough people think differently than a governing body, the governing body will be changed. It is simple logic. Something this war against us has not used very much.Jose, there isn't much time left for my "prediction" of Cannabis legalization in this year, but I remain confident of it's possibility. I could be wrong, but change is in the air, and could it be a bud I smell in this change? Peace to all, Rev JimRev Jim LunsfordFirst Cannabist ChurchGetting stoned: A form of meditation
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on November 03, 2005 at 12:58:02 PT
Press Release from The Drug Policy Alliance
Denver Votes for Marijuana Policy Reform***Thursday, November 3, 2005Earlier this week, Denver approved I-100, an initiative to legalize up to an ounce of pot for personal possession by people 21 and older.
 The vote was mostly symbolic, because marijuana possession is still subject to fines under state law. The city will probably not see much of a practical impact, as police have traditionally used state law rather than city law to cite people for marijuana possession.
 Nevertheless, activists hope that the vote will create momentum for reform in other places. SAFER, the organization that ran the campaign for I-100 , is looking ahead to a licensing and regulation initative at the state level. Even Denver's mayor, who opposed the initiative, thinks it is indicative of a larger trend. He told the Los Angeles Times, "People's attitudes about marijuana are changing."
 Mason Tvert, the executive director of SAFER, will be speaking in a session on city marijuana initiatives at the Alliance conference next week in Long Beach, California. The session is called "The ABCs of Initiative I-75 and and Measure Z: Cities Taking the Lead," and will take place from 4:00 - 5:30 PM on Friday, November 11. For more information on conference programming or registration, please see the conference section of our website.
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