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Legal pot: An Rx for disaster?

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Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2010 2:00 am

The citizens of Montana no doubt had good intentions in 2004 when they overwhelmingly voted to allow medical use of marijuana.

It was a feel-good initiative designed to allow some patients with certain medical conditions such as cancer, glaucoma or AIDS to ease their symptoms with marijuana.

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          Welcome to the discussion.


          • Freedom posted at 2:35 pm on Wed, Mar 31, 2010.

            Freedom Posts: 3

            The first day I moved here someone attempted to sell me pot in the Wall-mart parking lot, that was in 2000. From talking to friends that used drugs they never said there was much of an issue of finding pot when it was illegal. I haven't talked to anyone that said they would not smoke pot because it was illegal, but for reasons like their health. I think a lot of people just don't understand America's love of marijuana and would be shocked to see how many people that use it have jobs, act responsibly, and have loving families. It has been nothing but a scapegoat for too long. Children will always be confused when than can look at the facts on health impacts of marijuana and alcohol. The truth is the truth. Legalizing isn't telling teenagers to drop out and get stoned. The excitement and hype around it's use, the coolness that draws the rebellious types in (and there will always be James Dean type teenagers) is taken away with legalization.

            With regards to "are that much sicker up here", maybe we just have more progressive doctors that are tired of sending people home with percecets, oxycondins, and other pain killers that have just as serious of side effects (like death and physical addiction) and cost people their life savings.

          • JMO posted at 4:17 pm on Tue, Mar 30, 2010.

            JMO Posts: 133

            and in Today's InterLake, page A1 - at the bottom, the first ad I've seen for MM - enen open 7 days a week and has delivery 24/7........

          • rockyMTrider posted at 5:08 pm on Sat, Mar 27, 2010.

            rockyMTrider Posts: 5

            "When half the men become fond of doing a thing, the other half prohibit it by law"

            I have to wonder, why is marijuana illegal in the first place? Is it because the government wants to protect us from our potential vices? If so, then why is alcohol legal? Just follow the money for your answer. The State runs the liquor trade, and since making alcohol is a pretty involved process, it is not hard to control and make a bundle off of. But if marijuana were legal, anyone could simply grow it for themselves in their own homes, as it is a natural drug, not a manufactured one. This would not only result in the State being unneeded for trafficking, and so out of the profit loop, but it would very seriously cut into their liquor profits as well, as studies have shown that many prefer smoking to drinking. We are talking huge amounts of money that the government would lose out on.

            I quit pot over 30 years ago, for my own reasons, as I felt it was no good for me; it tends to make people lazy was my conclusion. But who knows, in my old age I may want to light up again, to help ease my aches and pains. In any case, I vote for freedom, that people be allowed to chose for themselves, and only face penalties for misuse which can bring harm to others (such as driving stoned...).

          • Rebel Rouser posted at 11:54 am on Thu, Mar 25, 2010.

            Rebel Rouser Posts: 1565

            ctucker, You are quite right when you say "Mind you it only takes one bad apple to give you medicaters a bad face and kill your freedom that the voters gave you in 2004. Be kind and keep after your own to mind their best behavior and not ruin it for all of you that appreciate what you have been given ;-)" The problem here, ctucke is that people are very different in their behavior and it is not something anyone else can control. After you apply for medical marijuana registration you have the option to participate in a group discussion with an attorney who tells everyone "above all be discreet". Well you can see how that is working! I think the "real" medical marijuana users (like me) are being very discreet as many do not want to be exposed (in this community) because of social retribution. Also, it is already against the law to use in public places and driving under the influence will get you arrested and jailed. It will take some time to get all of these idiosyncrasies worked out but I believe the benefit (to the truly needed use) of mm out weighs the negative (social) issues related to it's use. I personally do not care if cannabis is used or legalized because I think it is 100% safer than drinking alcohol. However, there is a huge stigma that requires public information dissemination of the truth (not mudslinging false information) to overcome for all cannabis users (especially regarding mm use).

          • bmoneh posted at 11:50 am on Thu, Mar 25, 2010.

            bmoneh Posts: 1

            If back in early America, people would have embraced Marijuana in all of it's goodness, we would all be growing it in our gardens and consuming it today on a daily basis. It sucks that, "Reefer Madness" and all of it's propaganda polluted the small narrow minds of so many sheltered people of that era, and beyond. Prior to that era in time, people were consuming and using the plant for many different purposes. Just like Opium, and Tobacco, Marijuana was a natural substance that people ingested to give them a feeling of relaxation. Alcohol, cigarettes and Marijuana are not for everyone. So... if Marijuana isn't for you, why hold it in contempt? It did nothing to you. Those under the influence whether you like it or not are your neighbors, relatives, teachers, officers, CEO's, coaches, and any other reputable individual that may be keeping it from you, because of your small narrow mind. Just a hint, if you are scared of Marijuana, IT'S NOT FOR YOU!!! Those of us who Love it, get what we need from it and pass it around. Because everything about it is good.

          • ctucker posted at 9:46 am on Thu, Mar 25, 2010.

            ctucker Posts: 18

            I personally am not a marijuana user and do not have a problem with those who choose to self medicate or just simply use. I rationalize the use of pot when compared to liquer. I personally would rather a person smoke pot than be intoxicated any day of the week. Most intoxicated people are or can be violent, rude, or a nuisance, including myself I am sure at times. I have never seen a person who is stoned have any of the problems associated with drinking other than possibly driving incidents. I would rather be in a building with people who are heavily smoking than drinking any day of the week. At least you dont have to worry about the fights, violence, or confertations which liquer can easily bring on. Just stop by a local bar at 10 pm to find out for yourselves. Most people who self medicate are simply just quiet or if not funny. The only thin on their mind is usually food or water. Now for the controlling of the use of this self medication is simple. Obviously the use around your own home is prefered, in other words not being in the middle of public and promoting the use of marijuana to the kids or being an influence on the younger population that it is ok as if it is a legal right to use whenever and wherever. Mind you it is a prescription not a right yet. All of the following laws that pertain to alcohol just simply pertain to smoking. IE, driving under the influence, intoxicated in public, ect. They should have the right to medicate if that is what works for them. I just sometimes dont get why people are for alcohol but against marijana. Same thing to me with opposite side effects to me. Which side effets would you rather be around in society?? Mind you it only takes one bad apple to give you medicaters a bad face and kill your freedom that the voters gave you in 2004. Be kind and keep after your own to mind their best behavior and not ruin it for all of you that appreciate what you have been given ;-)

          • jimmay posted at 2:15 pm on Wed, Mar 24, 2010.

            jimmay Posts: 1

            In Response to Police being stymied by Growing Pot Problem

            Bottom line ..why seek “evil” ...where there is none …..

            what is it ...that you fear...
            that makes you so afraid …
            that you feel you must control me …....

            I am fine , thank you ….

            so who and what Is out of control.....
            look to your own garden then ,
            and do what you will with the weeds
            of your own making....

            I have my own to care for....

            and I would beg you , not to persecute me ,
            and the rest our kind,
            for we are All of One kind...
            One People ..
            so what in You ...creates me in Your Mind ..
            as an “enemy”. ??

            ​​I take pleasure and relief in the herb …

            where lies the “evil” then ..in this..?
            what darkness do You spin within You ..
            when I say those words....??
            what demon have you created …?
            and why would you follow it.?

            I have dealt with my own demons..
            rather than cast these fears upon others..

            behold... the illusion of superiority ..
            some of you , do also think ,
            that in your need to pursue
            and control me …
            that you are serving
            Our God...?
            Is then you inner intent, purely then ,
            led by mercy....wisdom …...and love and compassion ...for me ?..
            remember “thy neighbor as thyself”...

            the ills of mans thoughts are clearly in abundance...
            and exist in truly historic proportions as our legacy still continues..
            but we are far more capable of much greater achievements ..
            into more Divinely led attunements ..
            to that of our spirit..
            that surely has more ..
            to offer to our world here...
            than the role of the suspicisious babysitter...
            when simply , this has never been needed..

            nobody , anywhere....
            needs the chains of blind persecution …
            these behaviors never seem to serve man well..
            so take pause for you seek evil where none exists...
            historically man persecutes that which he fears and does not understand ..
            and seeks then to free himself, in the binding up of that which is me..?

            there is no evil here in my home..in my temple..
            I...have no such enemies..

            do not let your fear lead your mind into avenues of persecution..

            cannabis in any form , truly never needed to be feared...
            I am sure , if plants have feelings , it would be embarrassed
            to think it caused such a stir...

            in summation...
            ignorance , created fear......created avenues to control and iradicate the fear..
            and behold , an Illegal label was solidly attacthed to an illusion of ignorance..
            (ignorance= meaning...unaware of the truth of such things)..

            thats where it all went astray....
            somebody thought they saw a demon..and started chasing it...
            when it was just a mirror of unclear thought...
            but what price we pay for such as this or any ignorance , do we all not??.

            lets utilize our ability to rise above the insanity..

            to get a clear look ...within ..

          • PotIsNotAdrug posted at 2:36 am on Wed, Mar 24, 2010.

            PotIsNotAdrug Posts: 2

            Unfortunately, Montanans who are afraid of a good change in this state and show a sense of worry let me remind you if this country, the U.S.A. chose to go that same rote as this state the black market trade for exporting marijuana internationally would be the target, the Mexican Cartels may not like it and it may cause violence.

            Then HEY we could fix our border problem and it wouldn't be Terrorism or Illegal Immigration!!

            I'm sure the US Border Patrol could concentrate on more important things like Cartels trying to smuggle people, illegal immigrants, and other drugs. This great country of ours had a vision and I doubt it was to be in debt up to our ears with the Chinese, so marijuana gets legalized, everyone who uses it pays a tax. The black market for marijuana disappears, care centers are still covert to a degree, that's why law enforcement complains of "it's hard to track grow operations". With the use of Wind Energy and Solar Panels large grow operations are green and off the grid".

            There are regulations pertaining to employment like if you are intoxicated and what happens there-after depending on the industry.

          • faithful reader posted at 8:32 pm on Tue, Mar 23, 2010.

            faithful reader Posts: 412

            ourfamily, you're trying to engage JBStone in a reasonable discussion. That's cute. A few weeks ago in a thread about marijuana here, I asked Rebel Rouser to lay off the crude language and name-calling he directed at JBStone, even though I disagree with what JB said. JB went on a rant at me. "I defy you or anyone ELSE here to find the passage in which I stated that I wanted to rid anyone of their drug of choice when it comes to pain relief. Likewise I have NEVER stated that it doesn't work for "some" people." Jeez. I never said he said any of those things. All I said was that I disagree with him.

            The guy is here to fight with people. If that amuses you, too, then you'll enjoy trading barbs with him. Some of us have learned to just ignore him.

          • Rebel Rouser posted at 1:59 pm on Tue, Mar 23, 2010.

            Rebel Rouser Posts: 1565

            Old stuff but I thought I would post it. Robin and I are of kindred spirit.
            Maybe this could be the first death attributed to marijuana.

          • ourfamily410 posted at 9:57 am on Tue, Mar 23, 2010.

            ourfamily410 Posts: 8

            And I agree the writer of this article is off his/her rocker!! The only point i agree with in this article is that there are alot of people taking advantage of this MM law. People all over are coming out of the woodwork claiming "cramps" and "headaches"...Thats all BS. Its people like them who are making a bad name for the ones who really need MM for pain, Aids, and so on. Soon enough, it will be legal. The government is too greedy to pass up the chance to make billions off this industry.

          • ourfamily410 posted at 9:42 am on Tue, Mar 23, 2010.

            ourfamily410 Posts: 8

            Jb- I just don’t understand you. I have been following most articles highlighting the use and issues of MM. You have been smeared all over the comment boards on each and every article. It seems this is an issue that you follow closely. You cite many websites. Your “high class” vocabulary and jabs at other commenter’s is very annoying, to say the least. You know, I just don’t get it. Some people have such a strong stance on certain issues, and sometimes, they don’t even have the slightest idea what they are supporting. I’m not going to quote all your posts, frankly I find that tacky. But you did say you’re not opposed to the use of MM. WHAT?!? Almost every comment you have made in this comment board and others paints a different story of you. To me, you seem like the guy who stereotypes. From your heated posts to your total disregard for other commenter’s, I see a man who pushes his views on others. Just because someone uses MM DOES NOT make them a “pot smokin hippie”, or “lazy”, or so on and so forth. (Im not saying you said that directly but it’s just the “vibe” I get from you) I am sick of you and all the others who stereotype this medicine. You don’t even do it!! That’s what makes me so mad. And even if you did it a few times and you didn’t like the way it affected you then great, don’t do it then! There are all kinds of medicine out there that will work for one person but cause paranoia and all sorts of other side effects in another. But for all of you out there who have been molded by the media and non-supporters, try it yourself, before you look down your nose at the ones trying to better their life without lining the pockets of the pharmaceutical companies. I have epilepsy, as I stated in an old post, and you know how many different medications my doctor wants me to take?? Too many! And those drugs that the companies “formulate” are far more addictive, have severe withdrawals, and right on the side of those pill bottles it states “do not operate machinery, do not drive with this medicine” How many people out there drive on their meds that clearly state “Do not drive”?? Its just because the word marijuana scares people. Come into this century and open your mind to alternative medicines. Trust me, I do understand there is a lot to be ironed out with the laws, and the issues that are coming up with this advancement in our community, but that’s natural. I’m just disgusted how closed minded people can be.

          • JBSTONE posted at 11:12 am on Mon, Mar 22, 2010.

            JBSTONE Posts: 4558

            LkHntr....Hey, I saw a guy's license plate that mimicked your moniker.....!

            Anyway, you're mixing tangerines and kumquats. Any "taxes" derived from marijuana have ALREADY been gobbled up by Bank Bailouts, Buying GM, Obamacare, etc. for the next few GENERATIONS. Using THAT as your argument is blind in the obscene.

            Understand ONE thing, please. I have NEVER said I was "against medical marijuana". Those are words put in my keyboard by individuals who wish to silence me.

            I am sorry to hear of your physical debility. I have been totally unable to work since 2002. Very nearly became homeless. Seriously contemplated suicide in the interim.
            Much to the dismay of my detractors here and elsewhere however, I continue to plug along on 100% VA Service-Connected Disability and SSDI.

            Sadly, IF this "health care reform" EVER does anything to help you out it won't be for at LEAST four years, but you can start paying increased taxes immediately, thank you.

          • elk_hntr posted at 6:37 am on Mon, Mar 22, 2010.

            elk_hntr Posts: 9


            You are right about this healthcare bs...i'm glad to see we agree on something-I would have liked to see a different approach involving less governmental involvement. But the truth of the matter is that the people who go to the hospital many times cannot afford the treatment they recieve. That's why a tylenol costs 45 dollars in the hospital, and a bed for the night is around 800. The costs go up for the ones who can pay because of the ones who cant.

            If hospital administration could do something about it, i'm sure they would...but maybe this bill will shake things up enough so we can actually DO something about it..

            I've been perscribed heavy narcotics by 2 doctors in the last 2 months for my back problems. I'm also supposed to have an MRI to see if my discs are degenerating and to see why my leg goes numb when I turn my shoulders. I've been perscribed 3 massages per week, and 2 visits to physical therapy per week. My muscle spasms keep my back twisted and damaged to the point where I'm in worse shape than almost anyone he sees. I'm 29-and may well be crippled by 45-in his exact words-"you have the back of a 100 year old man" while an 85 year old man lay on the table 10 feet away.
            That being said=I wish I could recieve the health care I need to stay out of a wheelchair...but theres no way in this economy that i could afford a $600 a month insurance payment....Not sure obama's plan will do me any good, but pretty scared of the alternative.
            I would love to see my welfare addicted neighbors lose their $10K tax refund to pay towards some health insurance though. They already live on social security payments for their child who cant see...freeloaders.

            Maybe medical marijuana will stuff some tax money into america's pocket? Maybe instead of the billions spent on busting potsmokers and growers could be saved and put towards the salaries of our selfless teachers who have direct access to our childeren?

          • JBSTONE posted at 5:23 am on Mon, Mar 22, 2010.

            JBSTONE Posts: 4558

            I take it all back.

            Where's my medical marijuana, I'm gonna need LOTS of it....!!!

            OK....Now, for all of those who are cartwheeling down the halls at Obamacare's passage, what good is it going to do for YOU and WHEN? I daresay you haven't a single specific benefit that you can actually count on but are simply partisan hacks. Claiming you "understand" the ramifications of this 2700-page pig trough of wordage is beyond laughable.

            Wait, how silly of me. It's the massive re-invigoration of the IRS's intrusion into every American's life that you're celebrating now that they are the official Health Care Police. Next comes the campaign to patronize tens of millions of illegal aliens residing here.

            Welcome to your new world's order!

          • elk_hntr posted at 9:00 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            elk_hntr Posts: 9

            JASONCHRIST: Thanks, BRO for all you have done for our cause...you're making a stand for the people who cant make a stand

          • elk_hntr posted at 8:58 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            elk_hntr Posts: 9

            And furthermore Susan, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised to find out that all four of them habitually smoke marijuana cigarettes........REEFERS

          • elk_hntr posted at 8:53 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            elk_hntr Posts: 9

            you wouldnt be able to tell if you saw me if I was high or not- but I bet youve had a beer or more on a hunting trip, just like a great many of the people in this state. Wouldnt that affect ones motor skills and judgement while hunting?

            Our country has shipped tons of jobs overseas-costing workers their jobs and our country's income....didn't you hear about that? Our unemployment rate is sky high, we buy foreign cars, did I really need to go into such depth about something we all already know?

            I have done hard labor jobs my whole life-road construction, home construction, concrete, welding, rebuilt semi trailers, and climb trees professionally. I"ve NEVER BEEN FIRED. I know what I'm sayin about many of my fellow hard working-nose to the grindstone workers. I work SAFELY, pay attention to DETAIL, and treat my fellow man with RESPECT...and I have noticed that my fellow lowly potsmoking co-workers generally do the same.

            Us lowly users must watch our p's and q's in our workplace, because the status of our P*SS determines our right to work. I was a little brash in my first piece-maybe they werent HIGH during work, but were very well recreational or medical POTSMOKERS-

            EEEEK , OH NO Honey, that guy's on MARIJUANA, HE MIGHT GO PSYCO AND RAPE YOU!

            Youre mad because people who may have a criminal record might actually try to make an HONEST living.

            COME OFF IT

          • JBSTONE posted at 8:00 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            JBSTONE Posts: 4558

            JesusHChrist, You stated, 'We have figured out how to ELIMINATE THE WAIT at our clinics. NO MORE LONG LINES!!! Medical records are not being required by many of our doctors."

            Very interesting.

            According to Montana Law, your "doctors" not requiring medical records is ILLEGAL....I quote:

            (10) "Written certification" means a qualifying patient's medical records or a statement signed by a physician stating that in the physician's professional opinion, after having completed a full assessment of the qualifying patient's medical history and current medical condition made in the course of a bona fide physician-patient relationship, the qualifying patient has a debilitating medical condition and the potential benefits of the medical use of marijuana would likely outweigh the health risks for the qualifying patient.


            You just proudly admitted to running a Criminal Enterprise. I'm thinking a RICO Act charge would be nice.

            Have a day.

          • jasonhchrist posted at 6:35 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            jasonhchrist Posts: 2

            The OTHER thing we have been doing, is...

            Every Wednesday and Saturday at 7PM you can, for free, participate in a massive conference call and Webinar between caregivers, doctors, lawyers and patients all over the US. We discuss zoning, ordinance, caregiver best practices and code of ethics, and much more!

            I hope to see more participation in this kind of constant contact so we can be unified as we approach local governments and the legislatures.

          • jasonhchrist posted at 6:33 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            jasonhchrist Posts: 2

            The biggest problem we face it seems is how to serve these new Patients, with medicine and with the Doctor service. Education is easy - we hired lawyers. We have figured out how to ELIMINATE THE WAIT at our clinics. NO MORE LONG LINES!!! Medical records are not being required by many of our doctors. We have about 30 doctors who are interested in helping Patients get their Green Cards. This has improved the economy for 22 hotels, 56 employees, 120 caregivers, and eased the suffering of 12,000 patients. The DPHHS stats are incorrect because we just submitted over 6,000 physicians statements in the last 2 weeks.

          • JBSTONE posted at 5:04 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            JBSTONE Posts: 4558

            I'm just curious if any of the folks fulminating over their opportunity to run free in the streets with joints falling out of their pockets can offer ONE 'advantage' or 'good influence' that derives from them smoking pot in their own lives outside of the uses provided for as "medical" marijuana....???

            In other words, what makes it so NECESSARY to partake of...???

            What part of YOUR life does it improve?

          • OldUncleDave posted at 4:35 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            OldUncleDave Posts: 1

            The writer of this editorial says,"The Mexican cartels must be getting worried." as if that's a *bad* thing. I can't help but wonder about the agenda of someone who would say something so utterly idiotic.

            People have been using cannabis for thousands of years. There was no "marijuana problem" until it was made illegal. Prohibition is a jobs program for cops, prisons, and gangsters.

          • joyustruth posted at 2:22 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            joyustruth Posts: 6

            Here are the facts reported on FDA approved drugs VS Marijuana.
            Deaths from Marijuana vs. 17 FDA-Approved Drugs
            (Jan. 1, 1997 to June 30, 2005)



          • joyustruth posted at 2:11 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            joyustruth Posts: 6

            Here are the facts about marijuana VS FDA approved drugs and reported deaths. From 1997-2005. this is a 8 year span
            Here are the facts about deaths reported on marijuana use VS FDA approved drugs.
            .Summary of Deaths by Drug Classification.

            Marijuana- Primary suspect of the death reported 0 Secondary suspect 279

            "Cannabis is generally considered to be a drug with very low toxicity. In this paper, we report six cases where recent cannabis intake was associated with sudden and unexpected death. An acute cardiovascular event was the probable cause of death. In all cases, cannabis intake was documented by blood analysis... Further investigation of clinical, toxicologial and epidemiological aspects are needed to enlighten causality between cannabis intake and acute cardiovascular events."
            Dec. 27, 2001 - Liliana Bachs, MD
            [Editor's Note: Dr. Bachs clarified the findings from her Dec. 27, 2001 study reported above in a Nov. 28, 2005 email to ProCon.org, as quoted below.
            "Causality is a difficult assessment in forensic toxicology. It is often an 'exclusion diagnosis,' and so it is in our cases. I'm therefore not sure about how to classify those deaths.

            At the time I published that study I would probably not classify [the cannabis] as primary causation because it was not broadly accepted that [a death from cannabis] could occur at all. Today I see reports coming all the time that acknowledge cannabis cardiovascular risks, and the situation may be different."] Stephen Sidney, MD, Associate Director for Clinical Research at Kaiser Permanente, wrote the following in his Sep. 20, 2003 article titled "Comparing Cannabis with Tobacco -- Again," published in the British Medical Journal:
            "No acute lethal overdoses of cannabis are known, in contrast to several of its illegal (for example, cocaine) and legal (for example, alcohol, aspirin, acetaminophen) counterparts...

            Although the use of cannabis is not harmless, the current knowledge base does not support the assertion that it has any notable adverse public health impact in relation to mortality."
            Sep. 20, 2003 - Stephen Sidney, MD

            Joycelyn Elders, MD, former US Surgeon General, wrote the following in her Mar. 26, 2004 editorial published in the Providence Journal:
            "Unlike many of the drugs we prescribe every day, marijuana has never been proven to cause a fatal overdose."
            Mar. 26, 2004 - Joycelyn Elders, MD


          • joyustruth posted at 1:56 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            joyustruth Posts: 6

            Here are some facts to chew on by the FDA, it speaks volumes unless you choose to keep your blinders on or possibly you have other special interests" Report the whole truth, stop bying the marketed lies and cover ups and expose what is true.
            Here is a list of deaths caused by Marijuana VS. FDA approved drugs from Jan. 1, 1997 to June 30, 2005.

          • ChuckieInMT posted at 1:51 pm on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            ChuckieInMT Posts: 100

            Ya, meebe we should twist up a fatty -n- watch "Reefer Madness", cuz we gotta 'script fer medicine... Wow, who'da ever thought?

          • outsideinthecold posted at 11:36 am on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            outsideinthecold Posts: 1

            When the author of the editorial suggests 'putting the genie back into the bottle' he is overlooking the obvious; namely the genie has been out of the bottle for years.

            Even before the medical marijuana act was passed, the black market was thriving. By US Department of Health estimates, fifty-thousand Montana residents use cannabis at least once-a-month and nearly one-hundred thousand do at least once-a-year.

            By this measure, the ten-thousand registered patients only 10% of the recreational participants in the black market. So in a real sense, any suggestion the current medical program should be 'changed' is both short-sighted and unrealistic.

            Indeed, there are many positives for any state that has a medical marijuana program. First, unlike the black market retailers, medical marijuana patients and caregivers have a vested interest in conforming to the law. This has two positive effects; medical marijuana is less likely to leak into the recreational market and as well as reducing the consumption of the black market alternative. Taken together it is likely young adults will find marijuana less available.

            In addition, the costs associated with enforcement of prohibition will be reduced while the state will benefit from a reduced outflow of capital to out-of-state and out-of country black market suppliers. Again, a net positive for the state citizens as a whole.

            Whether it was their intention, suggesting the genie should go back into the bottle is simply supporting a continuation of prohibition. Before doing so, any proponent should remember prohibition has never worked. Remember the very first prohibition? Nope, not alcohol in the thirties, the very first prohibition was God prohibiting Adam and Eve from eating the forbidden fruit.

            In that case God was the Sheriff and only responsible for enforcing prohibition for two humans. How did that work out? Maybe it is time for the editorialist to consider some other approach than a continuation of a failed policy.

          • faithful reader posted at 10:46 am on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            faithful reader Posts: 412

            For the record, I'm not a consumer for either medicinal, recreational or any other uses.

          • faithful reader posted at 10:44 am on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            faithful reader Posts: 412

            weneedrealists, it's not an article. It's an editorial. Interlake editorials are never signed.

            I think it's funny that the people of Montana voted to legalized medical marijuana and our legislators seconded that vote. Now that it's actually being implemented and people are using it, those who opposed it are throwing a ring-tailed fit. The "genie" is not out of the bottle. The law is working the way voters intended it to.

          • weneedrealists posted at 9:35 am on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            weneedrealists Posts: 1

            I noticed no one wanted to put their name on this article. The writer fails to note the fact that prohibition has done such an excellent job of increasing demand for the 'forbidden fruit' that cannabis is readily available nationwide. Have you ever even heard of anyone suggesting you can put the Genie back in the bottle? The only way we'll ever control cannabis is by legalizing it. The whole premise of this article is so flawed that it shouldn't have ever been written in the first place. This article actually points out how specious cannabis prohibition is & ignores the immediate need to legalize cannabis before even more tax dollars are squandered on this long lost cause.

          • JBSTONE posted at 9:20 am on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            JBSTONE Posts: 4558

            Please read my Guest Editorial in Today's Daily Inter Lake, pages C-9 & 12.

          • JBSTONE posted at 9:11 am on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            JBSTONE Posts: 4558

            Hey, ElkHunter, how stoned do YOU get before you traipse out in the woods carrying your high-powered rifle. Just curious. I have a disabled hunter's license and want to avoid at least a half-mile radius from where you're toking up.

            You seem to be a bit confused on the Kalispell City Council's actions of late. No one is making "medical" marijuana "illegal" or attempting to circumvent the State Legislature's deeds. What they ARE trying to do is figure out how to COMPLY with said law without degrading the quality of life in our fine city.

            And, I have to admit that I'm a bit confused too when reading your rant. You stated, "These CAREGIVERS are trying to make a living because people like you go to wal-mart and buy items from China, Bangladesh, etc; and our economy is in the toilet." Let me get this straight. None of the "care givers" you're in an uproar over shop at Walmart, right? And, thus legalizing marijuana is a sure fire panacea to nearly ALL of our ills. GREAT argument. I'm praying you show up to the next City Council meeting ablaze with your ardor.

            Thanks for explaining one thing, however. You describe how, "many [by your personal count] of the people built your houses, roads, schools, etc-and many were HIGH when they did it." I always wondered why it took so long to repave Meridian.

          • renead posted at 9:00 am on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            renead Posts: 1

            this story (like many others if you google "marijuana legalization") is just another attempt by the media to try to change and control the way people think and feel about certain subjects. I, for one, am SICK of it. Report the facts. Report how CANNABIS can create HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of new jobs. Report the studies that show regular cannabis use can PREVENT alzheimer's disease. How cannabis can even SLOW and REVERSE the growth of cancerous tumors. Report how OUR government arrested a man for writing a book about it, not because it isn't true. But because it IS true and they would lose out on TONS of pharmaceutical money killing people with their so called cancer meds.

            Authors of this lame story remind me of the people who believe the Reefer Madness movie the feds showed people back in the 50s. "When danger's near: Exploit their fear: The end will justify the means!" This war on drugs is a war within our own country against it's OWN people. It's such a shame.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sifwQ5pvcaU Cannabis Cures Cancer
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n31Nuj_AvTg GOVERNMENT-sponsored study that shows cannabis slows the growth of tumors but they refused to test on humans.

          • Bill_Harris posted at 7:49 am on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            Bill_Harris Posts: 1

            De facto today, facto tomorrow. Liberty is near.

          • elk_hntr posted at 7:34 am on Sun, Mar 21, 2010.

            elk_hntr Posts: 9

            Author of story: What qualifies you to determine if someone should take asprin for their pain or marijuana? What gives a city of this state the right to disobey state law? Marijuana has been SAFELY used as medicine and recreation for thousands of years. It does not affect one's ability to drive a car or operate machinery. Idaho removed marijuana from its list of DUI substances almost 10 years ago. Its hard for police to determine if someone's ability to drive is affected, BECAUSE ITS NOT! But Its ok to drive after you take OXYCONTIN? Why aren't you complaining about the bars and restaraunts who let visibly intoxicated people jump in their cars after a night out? Montana has the nation's highest rate of drunk driving deaths, why so much attention to marijuana?

            PEOPLE WILL SMOKE POT, LEGAL OR NOT! Prohibition costs taxpayers billions per year. These CAREGIVERS are trying to make a living because people like you go to wal-mart and buy items from China, Bangladesh, etc; and our economy is in the toilet. Your kids (or friends and neighbors if you have none), buy their marijuana on the black market-its been smuggled here by way of the Mexican Cartels because they know that Americans wont stop smoking pot. They are bad dudes, killing their own countryman at a rate of thousands per year.
            Many of the people built your houses, roads, schools, etc-and many were HIGH when they did it. Look at the construction industry-many people use marijuana for relaxation and stress relief instead of ALCOHOL, so they can get up in the morning and work without a hangover.

            Kalispell will stand apart and show that state law providing freedom from prosecution and incarceration isn't available to their residents. You are in a state that overwhemlingly approved this law, so if you don't like it-dont smoke it.

            I would be willing to bet that your negative stance on medical marijuana will not make one bit of difference in your tourism dollars. I would also imagine that many of the tourists from this fine state who do agree with this law would go somewhere else this summer because of the ANTI-MONTANAN stance this City has taken on this issue.

            I wonder how the whole town would feel about a vote? ya right