SHOULD MEDICAL MARIJUANA BE EASIER TO OBTAIN?

It is legal for authorized Canadians to use medicinal marijuana to relieve symptoms of cancer, AIDS, eipilepsy and other conditions. The problem is that while it is legal to use dried cannabis, it is very difficult to legally obtain it.

The government arbitrarily restricts the users to three unsatisfactory options: to grow the marijuana themselves (many are too sick to do so); to deal with a licensed producer who is forbidden to grow for more than one user at a time; or to deal with a licensed dealer, Prairie Plan Services located in Manitoba. This last is said to be inferior quality and fewer than 20 per cent of the 1,983 users in Canada deal with PPS.

Having recognized marijuana as legal for medical use, surely the government cannot turn around and make it so difficult to obtain that users are forced into the black market at high costs.

At the very least th government should make it possible for designated outside suppliers, who are already tightly regulated, to produce high-quality marijuana for more than one authorized user at a time.

Medicinal marijuana should be in th business of relieving pain, not causing it.

Do you agree?

13 Comments »

  1. 1
    Paul Costopoulos Says:

    Of course medical marijuana should be made available on the same basis and quality as other regulated substances. However putting it in the hands of the pharmaceutical industry does not guarantee affordable prices. Street vendors would not be thrown out of business.
    The current dispositions are ineffective and irrational and need to be revised and changed.

  2. 2
    Joe Agnost Says:

    I’m not surprised at all… pot has been demonized for as long as I can remember.

    Of course the gov’t should relax the law so that patients can get a good supply – why do they allow them to smoke it but won’t give them the ability to get good stuff? It just doesn’t make sense….

    Of course I think this way – pot should be legal for everybody, not just patients. Society has turned pot into some evil weed and most people have no idea how benign it is.
    Imagine the money law enforcement could save by legalizing this (relatively) harmless drug? Instead of consistently LOSING the war on pot they could make money taxing the sale!!

    Common sense anyone?

  3. 3
    Tony Kondaks Says:

    Like Joe Agnost, I am for the legalization of marijuana for everyone, not just the prescribed infirm. Indeed, I am for the legalization of all drugs as it is, simply, none of the government’s business what individuals do privately to pursue their own happiness. 50-60% of all those incarcerated are there because of drug-related charges; legalization would mean eliminating much of this.
    However, I question his claim that it is “benign”. Marijuana is a powerful drug and is NOT the same one that made the rounds in the ’60s when I was a kid. It has been bred and cross-bred and many strands today create hallucinogenic effects.

  4. 4
    Joe Agnost Says:

    “I am for the legalization of all drugs as it is, simply, none of the government’s business what individuals do privately”

    I agree… it’s none of the gov’t’s business.

    “NOT the same one that made the rounds in the ’60s when I was a kid.”

    True – the pot is stronger… but the hash you smoked in the 60s is still stronger than the strongest weed you’d get today!!

    I’ve had (some) experience – and the strongest pot today is still pretty harmless. Mixed with other things (like alcohol even) and it can get pretty dangerous, but just smoking it on its own is pretty harmless. No hallucinations, no violent tendencies, just a good happy high. Benign.

  5. 5
    Paul Costopoulos Says:

    I have worked with all kinds of drug addicts, adults and juveniles. I quickly found out that drug use does not remain “private” very long. It has repercussions on family, neighbourhood, work place and so on. I have worked with marijuana adolescent users. After a time they don’t get enough highs from the weed. They look elsewhere and the slide is on at 14, 15 years of age. I have seen dealers supplying freebies to 6th grade students to hook them before they enter Secondary school.
    40 years of that has convinced me of the necessity to control those substances, not liberalize their use.
    The reasoning about saving money by legalizing would fast be upset by the very heavy social and health costs generated to help those who can not keep it “private”. You could also save on police budgets by legalizing speeding on highways and petty crimes. After all when you start relaxing, lets relax all the way. Speeders kill themselves and don’t cost anymore money and petty criminals usually stop by themselves when the kick is over.

  6. 6
    John Says:

    “40 years of that has convinced me of the necessity to control those substances, not liberalize their use”

    Paul, the irony is that under the current system we have no control over these substances. It’s still easier for your adolescents to buy drugs than it is booze and that’s after the system spending billions and billions of dollars to wage a war they can’t win.

  7. 7
    Joe Agnost Says:

    “I have worked with marijuana adolescent users. After a time they don’t get enough highs from the weed.”

    That has not been my experience at all! Is it just marijuana users or did drinkers also get bored with the drunk and start looking for something harder?

    This seems to be the classic ‘gateway drug’ BS they tagged on weed years ago…. and I don’t believe it. Cigarettes and booze MUST be in the same category if you’re going to put weed in there.

    “I have seen dealers supplying freebies to 6th grade students to hook them before they enter Secondary school.”

    Legalization would stop this in it’s tracks. There wouldn’t be “dealers” once it’s legalized and the free market takes over. Why buy from the scum bag on the corner when Mac’s Milk has better weed at less cost?

    “The reasoning about saving money by legalizing would fast be upset by the very heavy social and health costs generated…”

    Pot is already pretty ubiquitous – most people that want to smoke it already do. I doubt you’d see a jump in users, you would just see a decrease in illegal users! 🙂

    I don’t know anyone who thinks: ‘I’d love to try pot, but it’s illegal so I’ll just have to pass’.

    Those that want to smoke it already do…. it’s a waste of time/money/people keeping it illegal – the war is NOT being won. More people smoke it today than ever….

    All the law is currently achieving is making normally law-abiding citizens into criminals for smoking it… oh, and I almost forgot – the law is also making a DAMN FINE career for gangs etc. who love supplying it to users. Legalize it – put the gangs OUT OF BUSINESS!!

  8. 8
    Chimera Says:

    I’m with Joe. Leave people alone to do what they want instead of making criminals of recreational users. And marijuana has an advantage over alcohol: people don’t get high and then go on a shooting spree or a rampage, beating other people up. And they rarely get behind the wheel of a car. They go to sleep. Or they get mellow and get the munchies. But they don’t get violent.

    Government-grown marijuana? It’s a joke. Not a very funny joke, either. Pretty sad, when you compare it to the real thing. More along the lines of a placebo than anything else.

    The war on drugs is bogus make-work on behalf of a government entity that’s afraid it’ll become redundant if people are allowed to make up their own minds about what to ingest.

  9. 9
    Tony Kondaks Says:

    I don’t take drugs. I abhore them. But who am I to say what path to happiness people should take? Indeed, if they want to screw themselves up both psychologically and physically, then go right ahead.
    I do, however, draw the line at children or anyone under the age of 21. The ability to make an informed decision about taking drugs should be reserved only for those who have attained the age of majority and penalties should increase for anyone convicted of selling or aiding those under 21 with the use of drugs.

  10. 10
    Chimera Says:

    Tony, limiting use to those over 21 will never work. It doesn’t work now for a really simple reason: teenagers (and even younger) have caught their parents and other adults in so many blatant lies already, especially about drugs, that they no longer believe anything the adults say. And why should they? When it comes to recreational drugs like marijuana, nobody is better informed than the kids (except maybe the growers, and sometimes they’re the same people).

  11. 11
    Alex Thomas Says:

    Yes. Unfortunately, the government (surprise, surprise!) wants it both ways. They restrict the source of the pot, and restrict its uses. The real thing (the grow-op variety, that is) is the stuff recreational users favour, because it’s, like, REAL, dude. It has the highest THC (the pain-relieving, munchie-making) content.
    I know several people who use the “wacky tobacky.” If they are any indication of the vast majority of users, as well they may be, society has really nothing to fear. Alcohol and tobacco kill more people each year than OTHER recreational drugs — so, like, where is the outrage?
    It was reported in 1998 that 22,000 Americans died from the effects of recreational drug use. In that same year, 110,000 Americans died from the use of PRESCRIPTION drugs. If that is so, DOCTORS killed more people than PUSHERS. Make it legal, grow it legal, regulate and tax it, and I doubt if you’ll see much, if any, increase in drug-related crime in this country. However, shares in 7-11 will grow through the ROOF!
    My name is….is….uh….oh, yeah…Alex, uh, Thomas….anybody got a Twinkie?

  12. 12
    Joe Agnost Says:

    “I know several people who use the ‘wacky tobacky.’ If they are any indication of the vast majority of users, as well they may be, society has really nothing to fear.”

    You’re absolutely right!

    Most (non-pot-smoking) people would be floored if they knew who was smoking pot at night after work…. it’s doctors, lawyers, cops, MPs, software designers (thank you very much), and much much more!!

    As you so aptly said: “society has really nothing to fear.”

  13. 13
    Chimera Says:

    Joe, add to that list the number of people who smoke or otherwise ingest pot at work, and still manage to function quite nicely — and who will never get ulcers or have nervous breakdowns because they’re over-stressed — and that would probably explain why Canadians are seen by the rest of the world as mild and mellow, not to mention “nice.”


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