Medical Marijuana Update /medicalmarijuanaupdate News on Medical Marijuana Legalization Fri, 13 Jan 2017 23:18:55 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Voters pass medical marijuana legalization in Florida, but some officials still want to block it /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2017-01-09-voters-pass-medical-marijuana-legalization-in-florida-but-some-state-lawmakers-still-want-to-block-it.html /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2017-01-09-voters-pass-medical-marijuana-legalization-in-florida-but-some-state-lawmakers-still-want-to-block-it.html#respond Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 Last November, on Election Day, Florida became one of the latest states to approve the use of medical marijuana, with some 71 percent of residents voting in favor. But despite that overwhelming margin, some state lawmakers now appear to be looking for ways to subvert the will of the people—not a smart thing to do, politically, in an age of populism.

As reported by the Sarasota Herald Tribune, despite the vote, some lawmakers and state officials say they are concerned about how medical marijuana will be regulated and whether, over the long term, “those 6.4 million residents made the right call.”

At a local Manatee Tiger Bay Club meeting recently, a proponent of medical pot, along with an addiction specialist who opposes legalization, debated about what will come next now that the electorate has (loudly and clearly) spoken.

The president of Advocate Inc., Bill Monroe, said he became involved in the medical marijuana issue some five years ago after researching a number of potential medications that could ease tremors being experienced by his elderly mother due to Parkinson’s disease, while also helping to boost her appetite.

‘Be a free thinker’

In doing so, Monroe said he discovered that a number of states and countries have legalized pot without undergoing major consequences.

“Be a free thinker,” he said during the forum. “Use your logical thinking. Are you seeing global chaos?”

Not from pot use; we’re seeing plenty of chaos from the abuse of prescription opioids, which has led to a dramatic increase in overdose deaths from them and from cheaper heroin, however.

Advocates, said Monroe, do not object to regulations pertaining to labeling, keeping cannabis out of the hands of children and other safety measures. In fact, he said he would prefer the state adopt a rule that pot from licensed growers be independently tested by free-standing labs to make sure that it is “free of heavy metals and pesticides.”

Monroe added that his group also “want the doctor-patient relationship,” thereby letting physicians “decide what the patients need.”

He further noted that synthetic THC—the chemical that produces marijuana’s psychological effects—has been legal in the U.S. since 1985 and is even available in many pharmacies. All that is being discussed since the Nov. 8 ballot measure approval is “organic THC,” he said, adding that he believes reports that claim outsized dangers over pot use are exaggerated.

Jessica Spencer, the policy director of the group “Vote No on 2,” which opposed the state constitutional amendment, stressed that doctors are still not able to legally prescribe marijuana because the federal government has not approved of it. Pot is still a Schedule I drug and Congress has so far not taken up the measure legislatively to get that changed.

Spencer said the amendment only allows doctors to “recommend” medicinal cannabis, while patients would then obtain it from approved dispensaries instead of pharmacies.

Concerns aside, it is time to move forward with the intent of the amendment

In recent days the Manatee County Commission and the Bradenton City Council both adopted a six-month moratorium on considering applications from dispensaries while they ponder land-use regulations about where such businesses would be permitted to operation. Other jurisdictions in the state have adopted similar moratoriums. That, of course, has angered many voters who see state and local officials as attempting to thwart their approval.

Spencer said that eventually, the number of dispensaries could total nearly 2,000—far more than the number of McDonald’s and Starbucks restaurants, as well as 7-Eleven convenience stores in the state, combined. She said the wording of the amendment was “very crafty.”

She also claimed that because there are a number of medical conditions for which doctors could prescribe cannabis—including cancer, epilepsy, and glaucoma—the wording on the amendment was open-ended, meaning doctors are open to prescribing it for just about any similar condition.

“Any 18-year-old can complain about test anxiety, an athletic injury or a migraine and receive a medical marijuana recommendation without their parent’s consent,” Spencer said.

Still, despite these concerns, the people have spoken. State and local governments are now obligated to move ahead with the implementation of the amendment.


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More and more countries awakening to the benefits of legalizing marijuana /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2017-01-09-more-and-more-countries-continue-to-awaken-to-the-benefits-of-legalizing-marijuana.html /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2017-01-09-more-and-more-countries-continue-to-awaken-to-the-benefits-of-legalizing-marijuana.html#respond Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 Over the past few years, the United States has taken great strides towards legalizing marijuana nationwide, but we aren’t the only country moving in that direction.

Around the world there is a growing push for the legalization of medical and recreational cannabis, especially as the therapeutic value of the plant becomes more widely documented and acknowledged by the medical and scientific community.

Currently, Uruguay is the only nation that has completely legalized cannabis for recreational and medical use, but several other countries have decriminalized marijuana use, and in some, medical and/or recreational marijuana is either already legal or legalization is under consideration.

More than 20 countries are now introducing legislation allowing either medical or recreational cannabis use; in 2017, Canada plans to legalize and regulate both.

From CNN:

“Ireland, Australia, Jamaica and Germany approved measures this year for its medicinal use, while Australia also granted permission for businesses to apply for licenses to manufacture or cultivate marijuana products for medicinal purposes and to conduct related research. Decisions are still pending in South Africa.”

Testing the waters

Because legalization is such a new issue – there are few road maps in terms of regulation, taxation and public safety, for example – other nations are looking to the United States and other countries where the herb is already legal or decriminalized as examples, and are carefully monitoring how things are working out there.

So far, the experiments have been working. In the United States, legalization has largely proven to be a success. States like Colorado, for example, have seen dramatic tax revenue increases and a decrease in drug-related crime. And there have been surprising and unexpected benefits as well, such as the fact that traffic fatalities in many states have dropped significantly since legalization went into effect.

As in the United States, where marijuana laws differ from state to state, marijuana policies abroad also differ from country to country, but with the same general results. In other words, countries that have either decriminalized or legalized cannabis have seen positive results.

An interesting example is Portugal, which in 2001 decriminalized all drugs for personal use. Since then, that country has seen crime and hard drug addiction rates drop dramatically, proving that decriminalization works – and not just for marijuana use.

In the Netherlands, where weed has been more or less legal for 40 years, the percentage of the population who use marijuana is far lower than that of the United States. Incidentally, the rate of incarceration in the Netherlands is one-tenth that of the United States.

The truth shall prevail

Decades of drug war propaganda brainwashing is slowly beginning to wear off, particularly as new scientific evidence pours in documenting the nearly-miraculous properties of cannabis in treating a wide range of conditions.

Videos showing Parkinson’s sufferers and children with epilepsy obtaining instant relief from their symptoms after taking a few drops of cannabis oil are going viral, and after watching such videos it’s difficult to imagine anyone being opposed to the use of cannabis as medicine.

And so, as the blinders come off and the truth about cannabis becomes more widely disseminated, governments and citizens throughout the world are beginning to embrace the fact that marijuana is not a dangerous substance that should be outlawed. In fact, its use is beneficial and should be made completely legal, without any accompanying social stigma or criminal penalties.

At this point, the only people who oppose legalization are the ones who have either been duped by decades worth of “war on drugs” rhetoric, or those who continue to profit from cannabis prohibition, i.e. law enforcement agencies, drug cartels and industries like Big Pharma and for-profit prisons.


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DEA lashes out at states’ rights for defending cannabis consumers against federal intervention /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2017-01-06-dea-lashes-out-at-states-rights-for-defending-cannabis-consumers-against-federal-intervention.html /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2017-01-06-dea-lashes-out-at-states-rights-for-defending-cannabis-consumers-against-federal-intervention.html#respond Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 One of the major stories of 2016 was the ridiculous manner in which the federal government handled the growing acceptance of cannabis on the local level. Instead of reconsidering their position on the plant, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has refused to label cannabis as anything other than a Schedule I drug — meaning that they still consider it as harmful as heroin. Yes, their delusion and corruption has become that strong.

Now the DEA has gotten even worse as they’re trying to shame individual states for legalizing the recreational and medical usage of cannabis. This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise since the federal government seems determined to slowly destroy states’ rights, but that doesn’t make it any less disgusting. They clearly do not care about states or individuals and this further proves that.

Jason Barker of Weed News reports, “Prohibition of cannabis is not a fundamental right that should be imposed on the states by the federal government, it’s a choice that states should be allowed to make based on their culture and their values-allowing states to once again be laboratories of democracy.” Barker is absolutely correct. The federal government should not be infringing on the rights of the states, but that hasn’t stopped them yet.

The DEA continues to try and convince everyone that they know more than all of us. All of the scientific evidence that has been revealed that helps prove all of the health benefits that come with the consumption of cannabis are completely disregarded by the DEA and other sects of the federal government. When people speak out against their lies, they are silenced immediately. After decades of this happening over and over, the American people are finally opening their eyes to what is really going on — and they clearly are not pleased.

It is time for the federal government to respect the rights of the people and the individual states. Instead of refusing to accept that they may have the wrong vision for what is the best future for the people, they need to realize that we want and need change — especially when it comes to the way cannabis is viewed in our country. If it is legalized across the country, the lives of many will improve overnight.

The health and economic benefits of cannabis are endless and allowing the states to determine whether or not it should be legalized is vital. With that system in effect, it is only a matter of time before legalization occurs.



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Medical marijuana available to Floridians starting today /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2017-01-04-medical-marijuana-available-to-floridians-starting-today.html /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2017-01-04-medical-marijuana-available-to-floridians-starting-today.html#respond Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 – Today marks the first day Florida patients have access to medical marijuana, and local doctors are preparing for the influx of patients the new law is expected to bring.

Article by Kim Kuizon

But, don’t expect doctors to be handing out marijuana immediately. There are strict rules in place that make getting access to the drug a timely – and expensive – process.

Under the new law, doctors and state health officials have up to six months to create a plan for distributing the drug.

There are two types of cannabis products that may be ordered by qualified physicians who have completed an eight-hour training course regarding medical marijuana. Patients with cancer or a condition that causes chronic seizures or muscle spasms may qualify to receive low-THC cannabis, which has very low amounts of the psychoactive ingredient THC and does not usually produce the “high” commonly associated with cannabis.

If a patient is suffering from a condition determined to be terminal by two physicians, they may qualify for medical cannabis, which can contain significant levels of the psychoactive ingredient THC and may produce the “high” commonly associated with the drug.

Some conditions that may qualify a patient for one of the treatments include cancer, seizures, muscle spasms, AIDS, Glaucoma, and Parkinson’s Disease.

Hundreds of Florida doctors have already completed the training required to see patients regarding medical marijuana. A complete list of those physicians can be found at

Dr. Barry Gordon of Venice has opened a compassionate care clinic where he can give patients referrals for medical marijuana. He says his calendar is already fully booked with appointments for the entire month of January.

Gordon is a retired ER doctor who worked in Ohio for 32 years. He became qualified under the state of Florida and will operate the Compassionate Cannabis Clinic of Venice.  For the first day, he’ll see 18 patients.  For the rest of the month, he’ll see nearly 300.

“We are seeing one patient every half hour or two per an hour. That gives me a good amount of time to spend time with the patient. We don’t want to rush people through,” he explained.

The initial visit will cost patients $250.  Under Florida law, patients must be established within the practice for 90 days. They will need checkup visits every 45 days.  It’ll cost patients nearly $500 for a yearly medical plan.

Dr. Gordon will only offer a referral for medical cannabis for those who qualify. He will not operate as a distributor.

“I think anybody that wants to recreationally use cannabis right now, in order to get a bogus recommendation from me, it’s much more difficult to come in. You should see the stack of papers they need to sign,” he said.

In Florida this is uncharted territory.  Dr. Gordon remains adamant his practice will focus on patient care, education and advocacy.

“The patients that are reaching out to me tend to be legitimate that have chronic and debilitating disease,” he added.

There are several requirements for patients to qualify to receive the drug:

  • A patient must have been diagnosed with a qualifying condition.
  • A patient must be a Florida resident.
  • If under the age of 18, a patient must have a second physician agree to the use of low-THC cannabis or medical cannabis in order to obtain an order from a qualified physician.
  • A patient must have tried other treatments without success.
  • An ordering physician must determine the risks of using low-THC cannabis or medical cannabis are reasonable in light of the benefit to the patient.
  • A patient must be registered with the Compassionate Use Registry by their ordering physician.

But even if a doctor determines that a patient qualifies for medical marijuana today, it will be another three months until that patient can actually receive the drug. A qualified patient must first seek treatment from a qualified physician for at least three months immediately preceding their order for low-THC or medical cannabis.

Once the ordering physician inputs the patient’s information and the order information into the Compassionate Use Patient Registry, the patient or the patient’s legal representative will then be able to contact one of the six licensed dispensing organizations and fill the order.

Florida’s six currently licensed dispensing organizations are:

  • CHT Medical (Chestnut Hill Tree Farm)
  • The Green Solution (San Felasco Nurseries)
  • Trulieve (Hackney Nursery)
  • Surterra Therapeutics (Alpha Foliage, Inc.)
  • Modern Health Concepts (Costa Nursery Farms)
  • Knox Medical (Knox Nursery)

For more information on the medical marijuana law and restrictions, visit

Read more at:

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Albuquerque Police Department to start manufacturing crack cocaine so they can arrest the people they sell it to /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-21-albuquerque-police-department-manufacturing-crack-cocaine-selling-street.html /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-21-albuquerque-police-department-manufacturing-crack-cocaine-selling-street.html#respond Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 When Big Government goes off the rails, it’s almost like they’re smoking crack. In this case, that’s not far from the truth: The Albuquerque Police Department now plans to manufacture crack cocaine so they can sell it to people who are then arrested for “possession of crack.” (See court documents below for proof.)

Wait a sec… Crack cocaine is an illegal substance, right? So now the police are going to possess it, manufacture it, sell it and then arrest citizens who buy it from them?

Yep. That’s how some police tell themselves they are the “good guys” when they manufacture crack cocaine to sell to the “bad guys” who were making the crack cocaine before the police started making it.

In other words, the Albuquerque Police Department will now be engaged in the manufacture and distribution of Schedule I Controlled Substances, meaning it is no longer deniable that “the cops are the drug dealers.”

It’s now right out in the open.

See the documents obtained by BurqueMedia

The story first broke on, which explains, “An affidavit obtained by Burque Media from a confidential source spells out plans by the Albuquerque Police Department to go after low-level drug users in a reverse buy-bust operation. In a reverse buy-bust, undercover agents sell drugs to citizens, and then arrest them for possession.  Part of that operation involves APD manufacturing crack cocaine from powdered cocaine.”

Just as I was writing this story for Natural News, the “Affidavit and Motion to Release Evidence” document was removed from Scribd. But we have screen shots below, grabbed before the document was memory holed.

It says:

…the State of New Mexico, through its Assistant District Attorney and Affiant Detective Marc Clingenpeel, and hereby request this Court’s order to allow detectives to obtain heroin, methamphetamines, cocaine base (commonly referred to as crack), and/or cocaine from the Alburquerque Police Department’s Evidence Unit for the purpose of an undercover operation as set below in quantities listed in order

…powered cocaine may be taken into APD’s Criminalistics Unit to be made into crack cocaine.

…The Alburquerque Police Department’s Narcotics Unit will use the heroin, methamphetamine, crack cocaine and/or cocaine… to sell to individuals who are seeking to purchase drugs within the City of Alburquerque.

Article continues below these documents (scroll down to keep reading):

“Nodding” or “shrugging the shoulders” to ensnare citizens and charge them with felony drug possession

As part of the APD’s manufacture and distribution of crack cocaine, they’re planning on ensnaring citizens by using what they call “gestures that are commonly used in the area to make contact with someone for the purpose of purchasing drugs.” These gestures include nodding and shrugging the shoulders, meaning if you simply nod at one of these undercover APD crack dealers, you could be just moments away from being arrested and charged with attempting to purchase crack.

After a nod or shoulder shrug, “the person will be escorted to a discreet location,” says the document. “The detectives will sell the person the requested amount of drugs,” it explains, after which the person will be “arrested and charged with felony Possession of a Controlled Substance.”

You mean the same substance the police just manufactured and sold them?

Gosh, and during what part of this elaborate operation do the detectives just pocket the cash and let a few buyers walk? Oops! Looks like a few kilos of crack never made it back to the evidence locker… strange how that happens.

When cops become drug manufacturers and street dealers, something has gone terribly wrong with the failed “War on Drugs”

Now, you see, the police are making the drugs, dealing the drugs and potentially profiting from the drugs. It won’t be long before the APD finds it needs to plug a “revenue shortfall” with some extra cash. And what do you know… hundreds of citizens are lining up just to hand them cash for their self-manufactured crack cocaine!

The temptation for abuse in this racket is too juicy to ignore. When a detective can make more untraceable cash profit in a single week than they might pull in an entire year on the city’s payroll, it’s not difficult to imagine some of these cops going “freelance.”

And if you have a police-run operation that can manufacture crack cocaine, sell it to people on the street, then arrest those people for buying the very same “illegal substance” the police department is manufacturing, just how long will it be before fringe police departments start running sex slave rings in order to “sell” slaves to buyers who are promptly arrested? (Hint: This is already going on. The cover-up is intense because the “customers” of such activities often tend to be among the political elite.)

What can you do about all this? For starters, don’t buy crack cocaine. More importantly, if you live in Albuquerque, don’t nod or shrug at anybody on the street, or you may find yourself dragged into a dark alley by undercover cops who claim you “signaled” them with an intent to purchase illegal drugs. If they persist, just tell them you aren’t interested in cocaine… you were actually hoping to buy a good time and you thought the undercover cops were transgender prostitutes. That should work amazingly well. Try it yourself and see!

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Former Big Pharma executive behind Oxycontin now runs a medical marijuana business /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-15-former-big-pharma-executive-behind-oxycontin-now-runs-a-medical-marijuana-business.html /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-15-former-big-pharma-executive-behind-oxycontin-now-runs-a-medical-marijuana-business.html#respond Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 John Stewart was at the helm of Purdue Pharma in 2013. He was in the business of making Oxycontin, a prescription opioid painkiller that has addicted an estimated 1.9 million Americans and led to countless overdose deaths. In fact, between 1999 and 2012, accidental overdoses from prescription painkillers quadrupled. In 2015, a gut-wrenching 55,403 lethal drug overdoses were reported.

“There is a lot of anti-opioid sentiment,” says John Stewart. “And certainly based on the social disruption that we’ve seen it’s understandable.”

Stewart still believes that there is a place for powerful opioids in relieving severe and chronic pain, but he now clearly sees how dangerous and addictive these drugs truly are.

In 2013, he left his powerful position with Purdue Pharma, and is now the co-founder of a medical marijuana company called Emblem Cannabis located in Paris, Ontario. Stewart’s shift to the medical marijuana industry is important. It’s a safer medicine for dealing with a multitude of health problems, including seizures, glaucoma and problems associated with the immune and nervous systems. One cannot become physically addicted to cannabis. There are no records of overdose deaths from cannabis, either. In states where medical marijuana is legal, doctors prescribe fewer opioid painkillers. The shift away from opioids to medical marijuana is one that will continue to save lives.

Prescription opioid deaths set to plummet in Canada, as medical marijuana goes mainstream

Stewart became curious about medical marijuana while working at Purdue Pharma. After delving into research, he even considered bringing a drug to market, but his plans never came to fruition. His research did, however, spark a passion to find better ways to deliver the therapeutic properties of cannabis to patients.

Now, his new business, Emblem, has joined Canada’s booming marijuana market, becoming the 35th business to receive its license to grow and sell medical marijuana in Ottawa.

As an investor, Stewart believes that the company can generate $74 million (U.S.) in revenue each year. The commercial cannabis industry is flourishing in Canada because in 2014 the government began requiring that patients buy medical marijuana straight from large scale, licensed growers. Investors are flocking to Canada because the government there (according to many) is on the verge of legalizing recreational marijuana across the entire country. This will ultimately help the estimated 15 percent of Canadians who have prescriptions for opioid painkillers.

Stewart plans to invest his time and money in the pharmaceutical side of Emblem Cannabis. He is spending money on research into different plant strains and dosing, and is investigating the market for various delivery methods including pills, patches, sprays and gel caps.

Stewart says that many of the people in the marijuana industry are skeptical of a former pharmaceutical executive coming in. He says that they are afraid that big Pharma is going to take over the industry.

“These days nobody wants big pharma, particularly in the United States, to do anything,” he says.

He has also met other pioneers in the industry who embrace the opportunity of new capital to strengthen research and improve consistency and quality control.

Starting with cannabis, the shift back to nature’s medicine will begin to cut away at Big Pharma’s violence against humanity. Let’s just hope that the medical marijuana industry doesn’t get overrun with greed. Let’s hope that the profits the industry generates will be used for expanding research into the countless other therapeutic properties of plants on our planet.

Sources include:[PDF]

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Philanthropist donates millions to medical marijuana research after it ‘miraculously’ helped his granddaughter /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-14-australian-philanthropist-donated-millions-for-medical-marijuana-research-after-it-miraculously-helped-treat-his-granddaughters-ep.html /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-14-australian-philanthropist-donated-millions-for-medical-marijuana-research-after-it-miraculously-helped-treat-his-granddaughters-ep.html#respond Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 An Australian philanthropist has donated $3 million to fund medical marijuana research at the Lambert Center for the Study of Medicinal Cannabis and Hemp at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The 70-year-old Barry Lambert earned a substantial fortune as the founder of Count Financial, Australia’s biggest accounting firm support network. He has a history of donating generously to various causes, but in this case, Lambert’s motivation is rather personal.

His 5-year-old granddaughter Katelyn, who suffers from a rare form of epilepsy called Dravet syndrome, displayed “miraculous” improvement after being treated with cannabis oil. After witnessing such dramatic relief from the seizures and other symptoms associated with the condition, Lambert became interested in backing cannabis research.

‘It’s about doing the right thing’

The Aussie businessman says he has had no previous experience with marijuana, but believes in its promise in treating a number of illnesses.

“It’s about doing the right thing,” Lambert told the Australian Financial Review. “There are all these uses for cannabis but, because it’s illegal, it’s never been researched.”

In fact, Lambert has already contributed $34 million to the University of Sydney to fund a program called the Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics:

“The Lambert Initiative has been established with a wide mission to investigate a range of possible applications: epilepsy; stimulating appetite in chemotherapy patients; tremors from multiple sclerosis; pain relief for the terminally ill; treatment of addiction and post-traumatic stress disorder.”

Lambert and his wife Joy’s decision to also fund cannabis research at Thomas Jefferson University was inspired by “Jefferson’s rapid progress in the field of medicinal cannabis research and innovative approach to exploring all avenues for new therapies to include using hemp-derived cannabinoids,” he said in a press release.

Joy Lambert played a key role in the family’s decision to explore cannabis as a possible treatment for her granddaughter’s condition. The Financial Review reports that at first Lambert himself took a rather “fatalistic” stance regarding Katelyn’s illness.

But when Katelyn’s father Michael began researching cannabis as a treatment option, Joy supported his efforts. Before Katelyn began her cannabis oil therapy, she was barely able to speak, and suffered from frequent and painful seizures.

“It’s like watching your child being electrocuted to death,” said Michael.

Shortly after a “trial and error” phase when Michael first began administering cannabis oil to Katelyn, the child began showing a marked improvement, with her seizures becoming far less frequent and shorter in duration.

Katelyn began regaining her ability to speak, and in many respects, now leads a normal life.

“She is a person now,” Michael said. “She is well.”

A fortuitous encounter

In 2014, soon after Katelyn began her cannabis treatments, Michael attended an Australian medicinal marijuana conference where he happened to meet Dave Allsop, one member of a two-man cannabis research team from the University of Sydney.

When Allsop later received a call from Michael Lambert saying that his father might be interested in funding their research efforts, he and his colleague Iain McGregor thought it was a joke.

“My dad’s loaded and I reckon I can get him to fund your research,” Michael said. “I reckon he might give you five or six million.”

After Googling Lambert’s name, Allsop realized that the call was not a prank:

“This was where Lambert came into his own, arranging the structure of the donation. Barry and Michael Lambert held a series of meetings with Allsop, McGregor and Sydney University’s philanthropy team.

“The Lamberts decided to up the ante and instead of the $6 million their son had suggested they ended up contributing $34 million.”

With millions invested in marijuana research, Barry Lambert has single-handedly performed a great deed for humanity. Medicinal marijuana research may benefit millions of people in the future, thanks to the vision and generosity of Lambert and others who are determined to “do the right thing.”


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Warriors basketball coach sees a future where medicinal marijuana is allowed in sports leagues /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-12-warriors-basketball-coach-sees-a-future-where-medicinal-marijuana-is-allowed-in-sports-leagues.html /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-12-warriors-basketball-coach-sees-a-future-where-medicinal-marijuana-is-allowed-in-sports-leagues.html#respond Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr may have helped open up a dialogue regarding the use of medicinal marijuana in the NBA and other sports leagues, after speaking out about his own experiences with cannabis, which he used twice in an attempt to relieve his chronic back pain.

During a December 2 CSN Bay Area Warriors Insider podcast interview with Monte Poole, Kerr admitted having tried marijuana twice during the past 18 months when his debilitating back pain became so bad that he had to sit out part of the last season.

Although Kerr personally obtained no relief from marijuana, he firmly believes its use within the NBA and other sports leagues should be approved.

‘Vicodin is not good for you’

When the subject of marijuana came up in the interview, the politically-outspoken Kerr weighed in on the issue, first admitting, “I’m not a pot person. It doesn’t agree with me,” but then saying, “I don’t think there’s any question that pot is better for your body than Vicodin.”

Kerr also said:

“Vicodin is not good for you. … I think it’s only a matter of time before the NBA, the NFL and Major League Baseball realize that. And I would hope, especially for these NFL guys, who are basically involved in a car wreck every Sunday – and maybe four days later, the following Thursday, which is another insane thing the NFL does – but I would hope that league will come to its senses and institute a different sort of program where they can help these guys get healthier rather than getting hooked on these painkillers.”

Kerr’s remarks caused a stir in the press and social media, but aside from being surprised that the conversation turned into headlines saying “Kerr smokes pot,” the reigning coach of the year said he was “kind of glad it became an issue because I think it’s a very important issue to talk about.”

Warriors team members defended Kerr’s stance. Draymond Green, for instance, praised his coach’s courage in addressing the subject and said, “It usually takes a guy like Steve to do something like that to where it even starts the conversation.”

The conversation is beginning to be heard throughout the sports world. More and more players and health experts are advocating the use of marijuana as an alternative to dangerous opioid pain medications.

Professional athletes also victims of U.S. opioid epidemic

The NFL in particular has had a serious opioid abuse problem for years, and even though basketball is not a contact sport, many NBA players are dealing with pain and painkiller dependence issues.

America’s opioid epidemic continues to worsen, and professional athletes are just as prone to abusing painkillers as the rest of the public, if not more so. Many players find themselves dealing with chronic pain even in retirement, and opioid abuse rates are high among both active and retired athletes.

In fact, the rate of painkiller abuse among retired NFL players is four times greater than that of the general public, and most began misusing opioids while they were active players.

Marijuana has been shown to decrease dependence on opioid painkillers. In states where medical marijuana has been made legal, deaths from opioid overdoses have dropped dramatically – by 25 percent on average.

The benefits of marijuana as an alternative to opioid painkillers are increasingly being recognized, and it’s obvious that both professional athletes and ordinary citizens should have access to this nearly-miraculous and inexpensive plant-based remedy.

Once the stigma is finally removed from cannabis use, the prohibition can finally come to an end. 2017 should be an interesting year; if the Trump administration fails to move forward with marijuana legalization at the federal level, or attempts to reverse the progress that has already been made, then there could be serious public backlash.


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Last resort treatment for Parkinson’s disease: Former cop finds astounding relief from medical marijuana /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-10-as-last-resort-to-cure-his-parkinsons-disease-former-cop-finds-astounding-relief-from-medical-marijuana.html /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-10-as-last-resort-to-cure-his-parkinsons-disease-former-cop-finds-astounding-relief-from-medical-marijuana.html#respond Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 Although there has been little scientific research conducted so far regarding the use of cannabis to treat Parkinson’s disease, the anecdotal evidence provided by an ex-cop named Larry Smith makes a very strong case for its efficacy.

Smith, who served 26 years in law enforcement before retiring in 1999, has been battling Parkinson’s for 20 years. His story is the subject of an upcoming documentary, Ride With Larry, which chronicles his fight against the disease.

Larry has been successful in controlling some of his symptoms through exercise, with particular emphasis on the use of a recumbent bicycle. In fact, the documentary follows Larry as he embarks on a 300-mile bike journey across South Dakota.

Larry Smith tries medicinal marijuana to combat worsening Parkinson’s symptoms

As Larry Smith’s disease progressed, he explored every treatment available to ease the symptoms. Recently, he turned to medical marijuana and found it to be amazingly effective in alleviating his dyskinesia (uncontrollable movements) and other symptoms.

On the Ride With Larry Facebook page, a three-part video series follows Larry and his wife, Elizabeth, as they travel to San Diego to try medical marijuana for the first time – medical marijuana is not legal in their home state, South Dakota.

In Part One of the series, Larry and Elizabeth arrive in San Diego and visit a doctor who gives him a prescription for medical marijuana. At this point, Larry’s symptoms are pronounced – he has trouble walking and is in pain, despite the 20 pills he takes each day.

In Part Two, the pair visit a marijuana dispensary and obtain $40 worth of cannabis buds. Elizabeth mentions the fact that one of Larry’s prescriptions costs $3,000 each time to fill.

In Part Three, a fellow Parkinson’s sufferer visits Larry and gives him some cannabis oil. At this point, Larry’s symptoms are pronounced, he has difficulty speaking and is in obvious pain as he tries to control his movements.

An astounding transformation using one drop of cannabis oil

Within just a few minutes of placing one drop of cannabis oil under his tongue, Larry’s body completely relaxes – his tremors are gone, he can speak normally and his hands are steady.

It’s an astounding transformation. The video has now been viewed by nearly 40 million people, a testament to the dramatic nature of its content, and to the fact that many people are interested in the benefits of cannabis for treating Parkinson’s and other debilitating and difficult-to-treat conditions.

Yet medicinal marijuana remains illegal in many states, and is still prohibited by federal law.

“A person like me could really use marijuana,” said Larry in Part Three of the series. “And it makes me pretty angry that I can’t get it in my home state.”

Part Three also includes an interview with Dr. Daniele Piomelli, pharmacology professor at UC Irvine medical school, who said:

“The number one frustration that I have is knowing that there is this untapped potential — that comes from what marijuana is teaching us — to generate new medicines, and being stuck because of financial issues or political issues. That is extremely frustrating.”

Dr. Piomelli refers to animal experiments that have shown how marijuana alleviates Parkinson’s symptoms, and to anecdotal evidence such as Larry Smith’s experience, but acknowledges that there is little incentive to carry out further research, since there is no money to be made by Big Pharma on a plant that is so cheap and easy to grow.

“Pharmaceutical companies have no interest in marijuana because they cannot sell it,” said Dr. Piomelli.

It will be interesting to see how the new administration approaches the issue. If President Trump truly wants to serve the interests of the American people, he must see to it that medical marijuana is made available to every single person who can benefit from its use.


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Just-appointed Arkansas medical marijuana panel on short clock /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-08-just-appointed-arkansas-medical-marijuana-panel-on-short-clock.html /medicalmarijuanaupdate/2016-12-08-just-appointed-arkansas-medical-marijuana-panel-on-short-clock.html#respond Wed, 30 Nov -0001 00:00:00 +0000 LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Arkansas political leaders on Wednesday named five people to the state Medical Marijuana Commission, setting up a panel that will adopt policies and regulations that each of the elected officials opposed when ballot issues were considered at the polls last month.

Article by Kelly P. Kissel

“We were rather vocal in our opposition to the amendment, but the people spoke and it is our responsibility to take the steps necessary to implement in a fair and responsible way the amendment that was passed by the people of Arkansas,” Gov. Asa Hutchinson said.

The governor and the leaders of the Arkansas House and Senate appointed a panel that includes a breast cancer surgeon, a pain specialist, a pharmacist, a former Senate chief of staff and a lawyer. Hutchinson spokesman J.R. Davis said there had been a discussion of perhaps placing someone from law enforcement on the commission but it was determined the other specialties were more important.

While Arkansas becomes the first Bible Belt state to allow medical marijuana, there are still federal laws against marijuana use.

Under the state constitutional amendment adopted last month, the commission will establish rules governing marijuana distribution to people suffering from certain medical conditions. It can license between four and eight growing centers and authorize between 20 and 40 dispensaries. No county can have more than four distribution sites.

The governor said he would prefer that the panel distribute licenses on a lottery basis, such as what is done for liquor permits among applicants who meet the state’s requirements.

The amendment gives the state four months to establish the rules.

“We only have one time to get it right,” Hutchinson said.

Senate President Jonathan Dismang, a Republican, said his appointees voted against the medical marijuana amendment, known as Issue 6 on the November ballot. Hutchinson and GOP House Speaker Jeremy Gillam did not say how their appointees voted.

Hutchinson appointed Little Rock breast cancer surgeon Dr. Ronda Henry-Tillma. Gillam appointed Benton pharmacist Stephen Carroll and lawyer Travis Story of Fayetteville. Dismang named former Senate chief of staff James Miller of Bryant and pain specialist Dr. J. Carlos Roman of Little Rock.

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