N.J. AG Awaiting Fed’s Response About Medical Marijuana Prosecution

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) – New Jersey officials are awaiting responses from federal prosecutors whether licensed medical marijuana sellers would face arrest.

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Levon Putney reports

State Attorney General Paula Dow said she sent a letter asking if feds would prosecute state workers involved in the state’s medical marijuana program after hearing the answer Washington state got.

“They asked for clarification on whether there will be enforcement actions taken and whether employees will be immune and were told that they will not be,” Dow said.

Dow said that she has concerns about the protection and immunity of state employees.

State Sen. Nicholas Scutari, one of the measure’s original sponsors, has said that the U.S. attorney general has already said they wouldn’t actively prosecute medical marijuana sellers.

“It’s illegal and illegitimate businesses that they would target and continue to target with respect to the drug trade,” Scutari said. “I think we’re going to be the last people that the federal government is going to target, especially given that the New Jersey plan is the strictest one in the entire nation.”

Scutari said that it doesn’t look like the state is in a hurry to start the program to help patients ease their pain.

What do you think? Should state workers in the medical marijuana program be protected? Tell us your thoughts in our comments section below.

More from Levon Putney
  • Manuel Pinto Coelho

    Brinna, unfortunately I have to refuse your invitation to go to NYC to debate with “real scientists” drug affairs. You know, as I have noone backing me I have to work for leaving… But, no problem, it´s my pleasure anyway to help you on your “big research on me” job. So, concerning my paper about Portuguese drug decriminalization real facts, irracionaly criticized by a energic australian gentleman with yours so enthousiastic as naive support, you have a very easy, not expensive and practical way to understand really what´s up about the matter. You only have to click with your PC mouse the link – http://www.inforpress.pt/pdfs/usa.pdf – and listen what has to say about Portuguese drug policy the United States Of America, Barack Obama Administration Office of National Drug Control Policy´s Executive Director, Mr Gil Kerlikowske.
    Yes, with sense of responsability and respect for the true – if everybody were like him… – the same USA higher official that, with the anger of many, refused before to legalize cannabis and declared very recently (Vienna, March 21) Sweden with it´s restritive and balanced drug policy the country model to USA and the world, think that Portuguese drug policy is NOT an example for USA or any other country in this world we are living in!
    Have a good digestion and a nice day

    • Brinna Nanda

      Manuael, I think you meant this comment for Nathan, not me, as I never invited you to NY. But maybe you remember me because I struck a nerve. I do believe you want respect, but that must be earned and not demanded. As I am sure you are aware, many powerful world leaders, (certainly respect-worthy in your lights) including George Shultz, former US Secretary of State, Paul Volcker, former chairman of the US Federal Reserve, Kofi Annan, former head of the United Nations, plus a number of former heads of state such as former president of Brazil, Fernando Henrique Cardoso, former president of Brazil, Ernesto Zedillo, and in your neck of the woods, Javier Solana, former European Union high representative for foreign and security policy, have just formally called for an immediate end to the global war on drugs.

      They state unequivocally: “The global war on drugs has failed.” It is the opening sentence of the report from the independent Global Commission on Drug Policy. Truly, if prohibition was working at all, you would at least see the use of drugs diminish, but on the contrary, in the 10 years between 1998 and 2008, (according to the UN). opiate use rose by 34.5%, cocaine use by 27%, and cannabis use by 8.5%.

      No sane person would call the war on drugs a success – not by any standard. And though change is often frightening, particularly if we feel passionate about maintaining the status quo, on the other side that change, we often feel a relief that we never expected.

      I believe you care about people, and helping them to live productive, healthy lives, but can you admit that their might be another way of going about it besides full-bore, bullet enforced prohibition?

      • Manuel Pinto Coelho

        Brinna “the global war on drugs has failed”? “No sane person would call the war on drugs a success”? OK. As the war on hunger the war on literacy the war on poverty the war on cancer and the war on wars have failed too, “no sane person would call a success”, let´s go to put a final point on our purposes to try to end them and start thinking to use our time in a different and more produtive way. You say too that the use of drugs didn´t diminish. You are wrong: Overall drug use in the United States has dropped substantially over the past thirty years, the number of Americans using illicit drugs today is roughly half the rate it was in the late 70´s, there has been a 46% drop in cocaine use among American adults between 18 and 25 years, a long-term decline (UN 2010 World Drug Report) over the past five years. More, in Colombia you had between 2001 and 2009 a 61% drop concerning production capacity.
        You said Brinna that “I believe you care about people, and helping them to live productive, healthy lives”. Now finnaly you are right. Most definetively. I agree 100% with you. That´s why I do not consider to remove the barriers that tackles drug use, that´s why I do not consider to spread drugs among them like corn to sparrows

  • Manuel Pinto Coelho

    Brinna one more time I have to say you that you are right. If your bet is to behave yourself as a virtual scientist that read some papers here and there and after decide that you have enough “science” to talk from the top of your virtual knowledge about important matters like this one and be taken seriously by who has the bad luck to listen to you, than, people like me, with my curriculum, most definitively “should not be taken seriously”. If you distract and take people like me seriously, than you have to look for a different way to spend your time, you have to look very quickly for another job. Now let´s figure out another scenario. Let´s figure out that you in a moment of inspiration made up your mind to give some credit to someone with twelve years experience of dealing with drug dependents problems on the field and listen what he has to say. Than, if you were humble enough to do it you would learn, among many other things, that almost all (all ?) the 14 thousand heroin dependents he saw in two rehabilitation clinics he ran as a clinical director, living 24 hours a day, side by side with them, making the clinics also their house – slept in one of them nine months and a half – almost all (all ?) of them began using (mostly smoking) cannabis derivates. Yes, cannabis derivates with all their “therapeutic, neuroprotectants and anti-oxidants properties” opened the path to heroin to all that “lucky” people.
    Yes, Brinna, if you were a true scientist that could learn with the sample first to can reach the theory afterwards, and not a fake one as you are, you would never refuse to admit the existence of a growing and frightful number of cannabis users suffering from SCHIZOPHRENIA and could never accuse me of “mangle the word schizophrenia” as you miserably did. Is not a question of opinion. Is a question of RESPECT. RESPECT for yourself, RESPECT for real good willed opinion makers and RESPECT for all that people and all those broken families!!!

    Now Marianne, I understand that “the type of medicine I practice” is not much convenient for you. The “little research” you did about me did not help you to discover that? Next time do a big research.

    • Rev. Jay Goldstein

      There is no correlation between schizophrenia and marijuana. The main factors are genetics and environment.

      I did “big research” on you and will continue to.

      Let me know if you are going to be in NYC and I will set up a debate, Yes, with real scientists.

  • Storm Crow

    For run a search for “Granny Storm Crow’s MMJ Reference List”. All I’ve done is find 100s of medical studies about cannabis at PubMed and medical journals and combined them with news articles about the studies, and put them in order! There’s no “High Times” articles- I prefer real science to “pipe-dreams”!

    I’m cordially challenging all of you to look at my List and just read the titles! You don’t have to deal with studies with 30 pages of “sci-speak”, or even the one page news articles- just read the one and two line titles!

    Medical studies report the facts. Your perceptions about cannabis should be based on facts, not the echoes of Harry Anslinger’s racist rantings! I hope that all of you will run the search and see what science has to say about cannabis! EDUCATE YOURSELF!

  • Ghost of Rufus King

    How much money has former DEA official ‘Dr. John Coleman’, anti-drug activists who receive state/federal funding like commentors Susie Duggan, Sue Rusche; and anti-mj lawyer Richard Evans (who charges over $1,000 for his pro-drug testing book) made off of the federal government’s failed 74-year-old prohibition of cannabis?

    Is the DEA, NIDA or ONDCP paying you all for your comments here today? Hmmm…

    Talk about special interests who are nothing but organs of the government who can’t and should not be trusted!

    As the DEA’s own chief law judge ruled (and these anti-mj nutjobs who make $ off the prohibition will not accept): Cannabis is the safest therapeutic substance known to man.


  • Ann Stoker

    Most compassionate people would have no problem with licensed and responsible doctors prescribing a medicine which had been pharmaceutically produced from crude marijuana for patients whose serious illness warranted it. However the idea of smoking marijuana ‘prescribed’ for trivial ailments such as athletes foot or similar is clearly nonsense. The whole so-called medical marijuana scam is just a ruse to enable users of the illegal substance to use it with impunity and entrepreneurs (including some licensed doctors) to make money. Are we really supposed to believe that the thousands of people now using marijuana with a ‘medical permission’ are that sick ? Meanwhile young people are telling parents and teachers that they can smoke marijuana because it is ‘not harmful or it wouldn’t be a medicine’….. Research statistics show that
    a statistically significant number of people who smoke marijuana regularly will also become users of cocaine…..look at the graphs of marijuana use and cocaine use and see how they have both escalated ….
    I have worked with drug userts for over 25 years and have seen for myself the
    way that use of marijuana can change a bright and energetic person into a sad
    and boring one whose life consists of smoking and sitting ! No wonder they call it ‘dope’.

    • Marianne Bays

      Yes, Ann, there is good reason to believe that thousands of people now using marijuana with a “medical permission” are that sick. In NJ and other states, medical marijuana laws were crafted to permit its use under a physician’s supervision to ease the suffering of patients with such “trivial ailments” as multiple sclerosis, ALS, cancer, AIDS/HIV, Crohn’s disease, and terminal illness. They do so because a growing body of scientific knowledge supports the efficacy of cannabis in treatment of these medical conditions.

      Cannabinoids known to have pharmacological effects of therapeutic relevance include Delta-9 Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), Cannabidiol (CBD), Cannabinol (CBN), Cannabichromene (CBC), Cannabigerol (CBG) and Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV). Certain cannabinoids have been shown to have analgesic, anti-spasmodic, anti-convulsant, anti-tremor, anti-psychotic, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti-oxidant, anti-emetic and appetite-stimulant or appetite-suppressant properties.

      Yes, cannabis can be abused recreationally by but so can many other drugs that have well established utility in medicine. That doesn’t mean that they should not be available and a valid part of American medicine. The side effects of use of cannabis are minimal, compared to alternative “noncrude” pharmaceuticals available to these patients. Depriving patients of safe and legal access to this medicine hurts them tremendously. A multiple sclerosis patient’s dependence on Oxycontin as an alternative to cannabis for pain control, for example, pretty much destroys her quality of life, not to mention her liver. Cannabis, alternatively, maintains her cognitive abilities and is non-toxic while effective in managing her pain.

      • Brinna Nanda

        Well said! Marianne. Well said.

    • Brinna Nanda

      I believe you are sincere, but here are some thoughts for your consideration. Maybe those bright and energetic persons were changed into sad and boring ones by life’s vicissitudes (it happens, you know), and they were simply trying to heal themselves with cannabis?

      The fact is, it is MUCH less harmful for a young person to smoke cannabis, than it is for him or her to smoke tobacco or drink alcohol.

      That is the simple truth…but because we have deemed those who use cannabis to relax as morally degenerate “dope fiends,” “pot heads,” “stoners,” and because drinking alcohol and smoking tobacco are socially acceptable, we have lost sight of the science which backs up my claim.

      (PLEASE don’t quote vague studies about how cannabis correlates with early onset psychosis. They are flawed surveys, and do not demonstrate any direct cause, nor do they make any sense epidemiologically: i.e. there is absolutely no corresponding rise in the incidence of early onset psychosis which tracks the ongoing rise in marijuana use. Which should actually make you happy.)

    • jack obrien

      what a MORON

  • Ken Wolski, RN

    It is a morally bankrupt position to forbid suffering patients to have access to the medical benefits of marijuana, especially when licensed physicians are recommending marijuana for these patients, and especially when this safe, effective and inexpensive therapeutic agent is readily available.

    The federal government’s position on medical marijuana—total denial that marijuana has any medical benefits—is an embarrassment to science, to countless health care professionals and to patients nationwide. But worst of all, the federal government has blocked the path of inquiry into the benefits of medical marijuana. They refuse to allow large scale clinical testing. They have systematically and consistently prevented the kind of studies that would lead to FDA approval, and then they—and their apologists–complain that the FDA has not approved it. But science cannot be suppressed indefinitely.

    There is an entirely new scientific field emerging with the recent discovery of the Endocannabinoid System. This system details the cannabinoid receptors that exist in every organ of the human body, and explains why marijuana is effective for such a wide range of diseases, symptoms and conditions.

  • Moses

    When I was working undercover in the mid 70s and attending Yippie and NORML meetings, I heard the same nonsense then about medical weed excuses and hemp justification to legalize marijuana. I met and discussed with Keith Stroup at a University rally about how much mileage he was getting out of his lies about medical marijuana. He has admitted in a public interview he gave up smoking pot when he developed a persistent cough saying no one was claiming smoking anything wasn’t bad for you.
    Here is a challenge to all medical weed believers: I can buy a controlled medicine anywhere in the United States and it will be basically the same chemical substance. Marijuana is an unstable substance, meaning it changes and is not the same. There is a tremendous range of difference in each plant and baggie. How and who determines which bag is best for what illness? Remember in basic science everyone learned all factors in an experiment must stay consistent or you will change the out come. How can you claim that a substance that continues to change and is unlike any other bag of pot is the best medicine? How do you know?
    Yes marijuana is organic and according to Poison Control so are 700 other North American plants that are toxic. How sad some are still claiming pot has never killed anyone. Visit http://www.cdc.gov to find out how wrong you are.

    The only difference in the lies of the 70s and today is big money funding. The lies are the same and the purpose has not changed. It is legalize the high on pot and let the others pay the price of related health care and poor decisions in criminal behavior, unsafe highways, child neglect/abuse [there are a lot of pot parents that believe it is okay to get their children stoned, including infants, been there – saw it], etc..

  • Dr. John J. Coleman

    As a legal issue, the AG, like the President and all Executive Branch employees, including federal prosecutors, are required by their oaths of office to carry out the duties faithfully of their offices. Those duties include enforcing laws enacted by congress. The Controlled Substances Act prohibits growing, distributing, or possessing marihuana anywhere in the United states. The Supreme Court in 2005 (Gozales v. Raich) upheld this law. Article VI of the Constitution requires states to recognize federal law as the “law of the land.” The State of NJ must obey the federal statute, period. The AG, the president, or the governor of the state cannot change, amend or repeal federal law. Case closed.

  • Manuel Pinto Coelho

    Being a medical doctor natturaly II prescribe medicines to my patients. For instance if someone has a tonsillitis I prescribe an antibiotic. I do not prescribe the antibiotic source in crude – I do not prescribe moldy bread. Accordingly, If we figure out the situations that can be aided by THC – the actif principle of cannabis sativa, and make up our mind to choose it instead other more conventional and prooved medicines, we must not use the plant´s crude form – the joint and smoke it but instead we must take Deltanyne, Marinol, Elevat, Ronabin or Dronabinol depending the country where we are, it´s comercial form.
    So I can understand very well the trojan horse theory supported by the anti- legalizers

    • Brinna Nanda

      As a medical doctor, have you never suggested that someone who has difficulty sleeping might try camomile tea, or valerian before bedtime? Are you of the persuasion that only laboratory manufactured drugs are effective in healing?

      I recognize that you were never taught anything about cannabis during your medical training. However, that would not have been true had you been a physician during the latter half of the 19th century, when virtually half of the patent medicines contained cannabis, or cannabis derivatives.

      Unlike opiates, which are water soluble, cannabinoids require alcohol or lipids for extraction. Easily injectable, water soluble opiates gained preference because of that factor alone, not because cannabinoids were in anyway inferior, or because opiates were safer (quite the contrary — it was all about making the life of the physician easier.). Cannabinoids require titration, and do not fit into the one-size-fits-all protocol preferred by doctors.

      Let’s face it, your problem with cannabinoid medicine is that no one is offering you an easy-to-prescribe pill, with dosage recommendations, to give to your patients.

      Your comparison of crude cannabis to moldy bread simply is rather a stretch. Whole cannabis, unlike moldy bread, is in no way toxic, nor do its curative powers need to be “derived” from it somehow, in order to work.

      While it is true that certain cannabinoids such as CBD have particularly strong anti-inflammatory properties, for example, quite frankly, you can simply breed a strain of cannabis that has a propensity of CBD over THC (and whole cannabis can be inhaled via vaporizer or ingested orally — no need to “smoke a joint.”)

      I believe you have some interest in this subject. I recommend making a good study of it, and out of that, I guarantee you will be able to help your patients in ways that you never imagined.

      • Manuel Pinto Coelho

        You are right. I am going to resend this wise commentary of yours to FDA officials. I am sure they are going to change their opinion…

    • Brinna Nanda

      Manuel, I wish you would send my “wise commentary” to the FDA, who’s mother agency (US HHS), by the way, holds a patent (#6630507) on cannabinoids as neuroprotectants and anti-oxidants. I certainly have sent them my opinions

      But your response wasn’t an actual offer, was it? It was a way of not addressing the issue of true healing. Something like the FDA approving studies on the medicinal properties of cannabis, and then NIDA turning around and denying the researchers access to cannabis for the study.

      • Brinna Nanda

        Marianne, thank you for your wise words about Coelho. You are quite right, and I now realize that a self-professed medical practitioner who mangles the word ‘schizophrenia,’ should not be taken seriously.

      • Manuel Pinto Coelho

        Brinna, did you say “true healing” speaking about cannabis? Please accept my advise and never ever tell that to a parent suffering with their son or daughter´s irreversible psychosis induced´by “your” cannabis´s healing properties! More, please contact quickly the British “IIndependent”´s editor Mrs. Rosie Boycot that in 2007 in a memorable edition apologised humbly the readers because since 1997 the very known newspaper began under her direction a cruzade to legalize cannabis because it´s “true healing properties” and announce her she was wrong. The reason why Mrs. Boycot changed her direction? ? Because science evidence medicine had just proove, not exactly the cannabis “neuroprotectants and anti-oxidants” “healing properties” you stressed, but in the opposite, the very serious harm and damage induced by the plant. As matter of fact In the same repport citing “Addiction” and “Lancet” recent articles one can read – ” in 2010, 1/4 of all world schizofrenia cases will be connected to cannabis consumption”. Unfortunattely they were right and nowadays psychiatrists and psychologists are receiving more and more cannabis abusers with psychoses and other similar mental disorders.

      • Marianne Bays


        I became curious about who Manuel is, what type of medicine he practices and why he is so stubbornly fixated on spreading the lies and the hype instead of considering the systematic body of medical research that you and I both know is available on medical efficacy of cannabis. After a little research, I found that he is notorious for exactly this. So, let’s give it up … he doesn’t need another opportunity to rethink his stance. He’s had more than enough chances …

  • Susie Dugan

    Marijuana is not “medicine”. It is a dangerous drug that can make sick people sicker. Marijuana has more cancer-causing ingredients than tobacco ! It can damage the immune system, the circulatory system and the pulmonary system. There is growing evidence of damage to the brain. Are we really ready to live with and treat the many new mental health problems that are being assoicated with marijuana use?

    We Americans take our medicine in many forms, but how many medications do we take by smoking?

    Sadly, this campaign by the marijuana users and promoters to declare crude marijuana to be “medicine” has had a disastrous effect on children. Today’s generation of adolescents are using more and more marijuana, believing that it can’t hurt them since it is “medicine”.

    Parents who are watching their beloved children become entangled with marijuana and other drugs should be outraged by the lies of the legalizers.

  • MS sufferers

    Charles you are correct. Medical Marijuana is naturally grown and has numerous effects on many illnesses in very positive ways. For example living with someone who has multiple sclerosis and watching them take over 10 pills a day.is depressing. Pills to relax your muscles, pills to take away pain, and pills to relax nerve endings, not only is that a lot of medicine, but with all these pills come terrible side effects causing pages worth of problems especially liver damage. Now for everyone who wants Medical Marijuana to remain illegal, I want you to just put yourself in someone Else’s shoes someone who suffers in pain every single day, constantly taking pills and having continuous problems. If they want Medical Marijuana so that they can decrease their intake of pills from 10 to 4 or so, why is it that you don’t understand the benefits. Maybe you dislike the idea of Medical marijuana because you tried cannabis in the 70 s or even recently and freaked out or panicked because the feeling was weird. You aren’t the only ones who live on this earth. You can not feel other peoples pain, you can only sit there and watch them suffer. Please take into account weather you like it or not, when a patient smokes Medical Marijuana the only harmful effects it has on the human body is bloodshot eyes, dry mouth, short-term memory loss( only while under the effects ) and Hunger. And as far as your ”o smoking is bad” there are methods of consuming medical marijuana that don’t involve smoking such as edibles, THC capsules, vaporizing and even drinks. All the other side effects are simply government propaganda because of the fear of not being able to tax it properly. Everything is about money now a days and not about the ill who are suffering.

  • Tim Spark

    The war against Cannabis is built on a foundation of lies and propaganda. It’s nothing more than a house of cards that has remained standing for far too long. That house is starting to shake and tremble…. and its only a matter of time until the entire thing comes crashing down on top of itself!
    Don’t just read this and shake your head. Please get involved! Contact your officials. Join local activist organizations. Make sure you are a registered voter. Make your voice heard! This is OUR fight!

  • Charles M. Kwiatkowski

    On the contrary none of the people against medical marijuana have to tell their wife and 3 daughter’s “No we cannot go” “Daddy has to Self-Cath” or “Daddy is in too much pain to walk” or “Daddy is having bad reactions from Oxy Contin” (making you scream at your children) or “Daddy cannot swim on all these Rx meds so the answer is no, there will be no beach today” Until you live with these problems all related to Rx Narcotics you will never realized the potential benifits of medical marijuana.

    What needs to be done is the DARE Program needs to inform children and citizens that medical marijuana truly is medicine for many people accross the USA. It is not for everyone and it is far safer than all Rx Narcotics.

    Whether you take this advice or not, I can’t see how killing everyone with pills is better than someone taking a few puffs of vapor from medical marijuana.

    Yours truly,

  • Rev. Jay Goldstein

    Marijuana has never killed or been proven to damage anybody in any significant way. That should qualify it as legal. That it helps sick people is a bonus. Such cruelty, to take medicine away from dying people.

  • Joyce Nalepka

    Most questions can be answered by looking back to the starting point for the issue of so-called “medical” marijuana.

    The campaign to legalize marijuana was begun by a young lawyer, named Keith Stroup who has admitted over and over that his goal was full legalization of marijuana. He also admitted he was pursuing legalization to get back at parents who were closing their drug paraphernalia shops. Stroup’s statement to Emory University Students, September 1979) was as follows: We are trying to get marjuana reclassified medically. If we do that, we’ll use the issue as a red herring to give marijuana a good name. That’s our way of getting to them indirectly, just like the paraphernalia laws are their way of getting to us.
    The report from the Emory Wheel asked, “In closing, what are your speculations for the next president?”
    Stroup answered: “Well, it will be pretty hard to dislodge Jimmy. Even though he fu–ed up a lot he’s got a great foreign policy. In terms of foreign policy, there hasn’t been such a progressive president ever.” Stroup etal like President Carter because he supported their cause to decriminalize pot.
    Marijuana was beginning to catch on in high schools and cause students major problems. Small groups of parents began to catch on to the issue and it was about this time that decriminalization of pot came to q screeching halt. They had succeeded in decriminalizing in 11 states already. Alaska was one of the most affected states. Marijuana use quickly increased at such a faxt pace that a mother from Ketchican organized parent groups and they reversed the bill.
    Parents must get reorganized and stop the so-called “medical” marijuana movement before it’s so deeply intrenched that we will lose another generation.
    Eighteen countries, including our own, have linked the newer, more potent marijuana to depression, schizophrenia and psychosis.
    The NATIONAL DRUG INTELLIGENCE CENTER reports that marijuana is now 244.2 % more potent than in the 70’s.
    Pot is so strong that kids now call it SKUNK! To bring attentiion to legislators who support pro-drug bills, parents and grandparents now are presenting a SKUNK CITATION TO THE LEGISLATOR. The first one went to New Jersey governor, John Corzine, DC Delegate, Eleanot Holmes Norton and Congressman Barney Frank. all of whom have supported drug legalization/decriminalization for many years.

    • Marianne Bays

      Who cares? Your thinking is very convoluted. Stroup’s motivation (and I don’t know if you are correct or not) simply doesn’t matter when, in fact, the medical efficacy of cannabis has been proven over and over through clinical research and practical experience. You clearly have never experienced the positive difference that cannabis can make in the life of a seriously ill person. (In fact, your whole note is so abstract that I doubt you’ve experienced anything negative from it either.) You just don’t know much about the subject and have bought into the hype.

      More education on the subject is now readily available. The Patients Out of Time website is one of the best sources: http://www.medicalcannabis.com. I’m not surprised that you are misinformed, that has been US policy. You should know that there are many different cannabinoids in cannabis that relate directly to human endocannabinoid receptors (that’s right .. your body makes cannabinoid substances of its own). Saying that “marijuana is now 244.2% more potent than the 70’s” only sounds scientific. Hard to do the math on that when it’s not just one substance you (should be) talking about.

      If cannabis now usually has some cannabinoid levels that are higher than they used to be, that only means that people need to consume less for medical efficacy. And, dear person … skunk is simply a name related to a smell. As for your hall of shame .. they are all on of my list of heroes for standing up to prejudice and ignorance in order to help the current and future generations. Yes, that’s right .. cannabis has not resulted in “losing” a generation .. our inane drug laws have come very close to doing that, however.

  • David Evans

    Medical marijuana laws undermine our medicine approval process that all medications must meet the rigorous approval criteria of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Our medical system relies on proven scientific research. Questions of medicine are for the FDA to answer. We cannot allow untested and potentially contaminated materials to be distributed to vulnerable patients. There is no reason why medications derived from the cannabis plant should be exempted from the FDA process.

    There are many unanswered scientific questions about smoked “medical” marijuana. There is a lot of evidence that it is damaging to sick people. Marijuana use has been linked with: birth defects, the worsening of pain, respiratory system damage, cancer, AIDS (marijuana opens the door to Kaposi’s sarcoma in people with AIDS), brain damage, strokes, immune system damage, mental illness, hepatitis and addiction. More research on cannabinoids is needed before we can be sure they are safe and effective.

    The “medical” marijuana advocates claim that marijuana is good for many medical conditions. Before these claims are upheld, they must answer some fundamental questions:

    1. What peer-reviewed FDA quality scientific research exists on marijuana use for the conditions that shows:

    the effectiveness of marijuana use for the condition
    the risks of marijuana use for that condition
    the benefits of marijuana use for that condition
    the dosage of marijuana for adults and children for that condition
    the interactions with other drugs and marijuana for that condition
    the impact of marijuana use on other pre-existing conditions
    the alternatives to marijuana use for that condition?

    2. What studies exist that show the frequency of administration, duration of administration, time of administration, in relation to time of meals, time of onset of symptoms, or other time factors, route or method of administration of marijuana for all these medical conditions?

    These questions must be answered before a drug can be used for medicine.

    Marijuana legalization advocates would have you believe that smoking marijuana is the only alternative for cancer sufferers who are going untreated for the nausea associated with chemotherapy or for people with Multiple Sclerosis. However, numerous medications and treatments are currently available for these conditions.

    The anecdotal reports regarding “medical” marijuana are not reliable scientific evidence because the claimed benefits were not independently verified and do not reflect double-blind controls. The anecdotal reports may also be inaccurate due to the emotional expectancy of the person using marijuana and the placebo effect. In some cases there may be deliberate exaggeration for ideological reasons.

    While we strive to be a compassionate society, there must be a balance between alleviating or managing pain and creating a system that potentially does more harm than good. The road that medical marijuana legislation is traveling is laden with potholes. There are too many unanswered questions regarding this serious public policy issue to permit smoked or crude marijuana as medicine.

    • pete

      States, including NJ, passed medical marijuana laws because the federal government has opposed, until very recently, all research on cannabis except for studies to prove its harm. Even though studies in other countries were showing positive benefits for certain diseases.

      Because of this, cannabis has been researched for harmful effects much more than any FDA approved drug. In spite of all this research, very little harm has been found.

      Research for medical effects has been carried out in other countries that did not ban medical research on cannabis with some very positive outcomes. And recent research in California, approved finally by our government, has also found positive benefits.

      So cannabis has been thoroughly as possible for harmful effects and has been shown to have some positive effects. So the benefit to risk ratio is already shown to be much higher than most FDA approved drugs.

    • Eric

      The FDA has made plenty of mistakes approving products sold to the public that were found to be damaging.

      Let the people with diseases and issues make their own choice on what helps them. While waiting for the FDA or the Government to make the decision is the right thing to do, some of these people do not have the time and are suffering in the process.

      Can somebody please tell me the medical benefits of drinking excessive alcohol? You can drink as much alcohol as you want…until you get liver cancer.

      • MS sufferers

        that is correct eric and David Evans dont even start about medical marijuana being ”crude medicine”. Are you stupid or something because Im 100% sure that Alcohol and Tobacco studies prove far worse effects. And what you think it is a good idea for people to just shove a whole bunch of pills downs their throat when they have chronic illnesses? well for your information all PRESCRIPTION painkillers and sedatives are far worse than that of Medical Marijuana. ever watch TV? ever see a commercial for a medicine that helps you sleep? for example Lunesta side effects alone are Anxiety; decrease in sexual desire; difficulty with coordination; dizziness; drowsiness; dry mouth; headache; indigestion; lightheadedness; nausea; nervousness; unpleasant taste; vomiting. You know why thats legal it is because the goverment makes money off of you when you buy it. And then when you start getting more side effects and illnesses you keep going back to your doctor and he or she keeps giving you more and more medicine then what happens you ask? The goverment continues to make lots of money and the patients continue to suffer because of people like you who are selfish and ignorant.

  • Duncan20903

    There hasn’t been a single prosecution of a State or local official involved in licensing or zoning regulations of the medicinal cannabis vendors in other States with medicinal cannabis patient protection laws, including the most prominent citizen of California today, Governor Jerry Brown who oversaw and was actively involved in implementing the highly successful medicinal cannabis regulatory system as the Mayor of Oakland. Mr. Brown also never mentioned the possibility of prosecuting himself when he was California’s Attorney General subsequent to being Mayor of Oakland. Yes, the last assertion is ridiculous. Almost as ridiculous as this entire controversy.

  • Samuel_Caldwell

    People need to look into U.S. Patent # 6630507. And then demand why the Federal Government has a patent on Medical Marijuana and not using it?!

    The U.S. government is letting the sick and poor die because the government will not give the citizens a cheaper and safer medicine.

    Also, while you’re at it look into Rick Simpson from Canada. – Truly unreal story that no one is paying attention too.

  • George Scott

    Not one person is speaking about the extract of this plant that can be used to cure cancer. See Dr. Mercola’s investigation into this wonder drug.
    Anyone have a legit comment ???

    • EXPAT

      two words…….BIG PHARMA

    • Charles M. Kwiatkowski

      I use medical marijuana in NJ to treat my MS and it frightens me the plans my home state has in store for the only medicine that works to treat my multiple sclerosis (for the past 7 years using it.) I have lived with MS for the past 14+ years and have given up hope that any pill will ever help anyone but the stock holders of Pfizer and other Rx makers.

      3 neighboring states of NJ currently have medical marijuana laws up and working and NJ has continued to stall. I cannot afford to purchase it even when they finally open a dispesary so I am out of luck.

      Yours Ouchly,


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