The following is a reprint of the Boston Globe, Saturday, October 13, 2012, Opinion page A9 article by Lawrence Harmon. Image at left from ISTOCKPHOTO/GLOBE STAFF ILLUSTRATION. Mr. Harmon writes:
“If medical marijuana truly relieves suffering, it belongs in pharmacies
NONCOMPLIANCE IS the term used in medical circles to describe the state of incautious patients who ignore medical advice even at the risk of serious consequences. The same label should apply the almost 70 percent of Massachusetts voters who, according to a recent Globe poll, support the legalization of marijuana for medical use.Read More
When the Commonwealth’s most respected medical societies say no to so-called medical marijuana, trust them: marijuana is not medicine.
- Marijuana has not been subjected to the same rigorous, scientific testing as other drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Claims for its effectiveness are not scientifically proven, and would not be accepted as proof of effectiveness for any other medicine under development.
- Marijuana poses health risks. For example, marijuana smoke contains more poisons than tobacco smoke, as well as carbon monoxide and tar. Its use has also been associated with long-term impairments of mental capacity.
- Physician-prescribing of any drug is a medical decision and should be decided by scientific fact, not by public ballot.
“Neither the FDA nor the Institute of Medicine have found smoked marijuana to meet the modern standard for safe or effective medicine for any condition,” concludes the Official White House Response to Legalize and Regulate Marijuana in a Manner Similar to Alcohol.
In a short, fully-cited, and easy-to-read one-page statement reprinted below, the science-and-research-based White House position underscores why a No vote on 3 in Massachusetts is essential in limiting access to marijuana by, especially, our youth.Read More
Here’s how Dr. Alan Feiger, a Colorado physician, documented his trip to a medical marijuana dispensary in Venice Beach, Calif., on March 12, 2012:
I finally reached the desk, the “doctor” never looked at me — much less looked me in the eye. He never read my questionnaire. He provided no patient confidentiality. He didn’t take a patient history. He didn’t give me a physical exam. He gave no warnings about the side effects of marijuana use.
Scientists and physicians, including the Massachusetts Medical Society, overwhelmingly agree: smoking marijuana isn’t medicine.Read More