Pubdate: Tue, 12 Sep 2000
Source: San Francisco Examiner (CA)
Copyright: 2000 San Francisco Examiner
Author: Athena Fye


Re "Judge: Doctors Can Recommend Pot," Sept. 9: It is encouraging that U.S.
District Judge Wiliam Alsup sees that the government has no right to put
limits on medical advice.

Revoking a physician's right to prescribe legal drugs for informing a
seriously ill patient that marijuana may be the best way to ease their pain
is ludicrous. If a doctor knows that using marijuana medically may improve
the quality of life for AIDS and cancer patients, it is his job to at least
inform the patient this is an option, albeit an illegal one.

It is the patient's right to be informed of all avenues, just as it is the
physician's job to relay that information to the patient. The decision to
actually use marijuana is up to the patient. Why should we punish doctors
who are concerned about the amount of pain their patients are in?

This is not a prescription for marijuana, but a professional opinion, which
the government has no right to censor. The health and well being of the
public should be the first concern of the physician and the government
should understand that shooting the messenger is a counterproductive way to
control marijuana use in California.

Athena Fye, Sacramento
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