Pubdate: Sun, 17 Apr 2011
Source: Topeka Capital-Journal (KS)
Copyright: 2011 The Topeka Capital-Journal
Author: Sharrod Greene


I attend Baker University School of Nursing. The laws against medical
marijuana and the complicated rigmarole that lobbyists have had to
deal with has always baffled me, yet has become even more compelling
since I began my nursing endeavors.

One primary responsibility of a nurse is to ensure that his or her
patients' pain is minimized or eliminated. Therefore, why should we or
the state and federal government deny those chronically and terminally
ill patients with any treatment they desire to minimize their agony?

Simply put, medical marijuana should be changed from a Schedule I
substance to a Schedule II substance, thereby authorizing physicians
to prescribe the drug in certain medical situations.

Marijuana has several therapeutic uses. Many patients have testified
to the effectiveness of smoked and ingested marijuana to increase
their appetite, reduce nausea, reduce pain and decrease intraocular
pressure in patients with glaucoma.

Due to how cheap it is to grow, it would be more affordable and
obtainable by those patients in need, not to mention that its
legalization would lead to tremendous local, state and federal profits
due to taxation. The government is spending an inordinate amount of
money on maintaining marijuana's illegality and by incarcerating the
patients who use it when they could be capitalizing on its sales tax.

It is a fact that marijuana is safer than many of the medications
being prescribed by physicians on a daily basis. Downgrading the
schedule seems like a no-brainer, but the federal government is
enforcing such strict implementations on the studies of medical
marijuana that the progress of its legalization is stagnant. A change
needs to be made with our generation.

Sharrod Greene

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