Pubdate: Sat, 25 Apr 2009
Source: Albany Democrat-Herald (OR)
Copyright: 2009 Lee Enterprises
Author: Jim Greig


Larry Crompton's letter (April 9) perpetuates "Reefer Madness"
propaganda. He conducts a one-person study group report and suddenly
he believes he is an expert on marijuana?

His ludicrous statement that smoking marijuana "can be 100 times or so
more dangerous to your health than cigarettes" defies scientific
research and highlights his naivete. Tobacco is the No. 1 killer in
America, with 435,000 annual deaths attributed to tobacco use.

According to Dr. Robert Melamede, University of Colorado, there "are
fundamental differences in the pharmacological properties between
cannabis and tobacco smoke. Cannabis smoke contains cannabinoids
whereas tobacco smoke contains nicotine. Available scientific data
that examines the carcinogenic properties of inhaling smoke and its
biological consequences suggests reasons why tobacco smoke, but not
cannabis smoke, may result in lung cancer."

Crompton also incorrectly stated that "studies that show that extended
use increases rates of anxiety, depression, suicidal ideation and
schizophrenia are out there for all to see."

Hogwash! If you search medical uses of cannabinoids online, you will
find more than 1 million entries. Dig deeper and you will find
thousands of pre-clinical and clinical trials indicating that
cannabinoids are useful in controlling Alzheimer's, ALS, cachexia,
cancer, chronic pain, epilepsy, GI disorders, glaucoma, hepatitis C,
HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, muscle spasms, nausea, osteoporosis,
PTSD, rheumatoid arthritis, seizures and sleep apnea.

Jim Greig, Eugene, Drug Policy Forum-Oregon
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