Pubdate: Tue, 30 May 2006
Source: Asbury Park Press (NJ)
Copyright: 2006 Asbury Park Press
Author: Ernestine Olsen


I read with interest the opposing views of the medical marijuana issue
and was appalled by the arrogance and smugness of the anti-marijuana
commentary written by David Evans of the Drug-Free Schools coalition.
("Medical marijuana support not backed by scientific studies,'" May

I am 70 years old, a registered nurse and have never taken an illegal
drug. I do, however, know what pain is. I have seen many people suffer
terribly, including my own son who died at 31 of colon cancer. He
never had the desire to use an illegal substance and resisted anything
he considered mind-altering. But if he had desired it for relief of
pain, I would have fought like a tiger for him to get it.

I was stunned by the idiotic statement, "Marijuana is intoxicating so
it's not surprising that sincere people report relief of their
symptoms when they smoke it. They may be feeling better but may be
getting worse due to the detrimental effects of it." I doubt anyone
suffering pain and facing death cares about anything but getting
relief. It is also ridiculous to state that people are making money
selling marijuana to sick people. No one would have to go to an
illegal supplier if it were allowed legally to be prescribed.

I also challenge the statement that proponents who argue the case for
passage of the law to allow doctors to prescribe marijuana are basing
their case on emotion rather than science. We are not a police state
in which scientists and pharmaceutical companies rule our private
lives. A caring society should allow ill people to use any course of
treatment they wish.

Evans tells us to leave this to the Food and Drug Administration. The
FDA makes errors, as evidenced by the recent lawsuits against drug
manufacturers that had FDA approval.

Meanwhile, people are suffering with pain and are being denied the
right to select their own course of treatment. For heaven's sake,
let's show some mercy and let the patient, doctor and family make
their own decisions.

Ernestine Olsen

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