The One Drug You Can't Have
Thu, 09 Jun 2005 © Star-News (NC)
The U.S. Supreme Court has given the federal government permission to keep prosecuting sick people who use a drug that eases their distress - - even though the drug has been legalized for that purpose by the states they live in.
The 6-3 decision may be sound as a matter of constitutional law. But the policy it upheld is morally indefensible.
Sure, the dangers of marijuana are real.
Yet so are the dangers of a host of drugs that are legal, advertised and widely consumed. At least in theory, doctors and patients choose them after balancing their risks and benefits.
But the federal government denies that choice to doctors and patients if the drug being considered is marijuana.
Eleven states have passed laws in defiance of that irrational and cruel policy. Now the Supreme Court has said the Constitution allows federal prosecutors to go after pot-smoking patients in those states.
Even if such prosecutions remain unlikely, the possibility will frighten many doctors and patients into abandoning a drug they say can help ease pain, nausea and other problems.
Maybe those effects are all in their heads. Maybe other drugs would work as well, or better.
But we usually leave such therapeutic decisions up to doctors and patients -- unless, of course, influential voters consider that therapy immoral and insist on imposing their morality on everybody else.
Some of the officials who want to turn suffering people into felons are the same officials who allowed the sale of other drugs that apparently have killed thousands of people.
Of course, Vioxx and similar pills were manufactured by large corporations and sold at handsome profits, which allowed these corporations to make generous "campaign contributions" to members of Congress and the president.
Medical marijuana is grown in small quantities for personal use: no profits, no "campaign contributions."
And no humanity from politicians.
Please also read: Long Term Exposure To Cannabis
*Industrial-Hemp has no psychoactive properties following definition of the European Economic Community (EEC); THC content is less than 0.3%. In general, low THC-seed varieties without psychoactive properties are those that have a THC content of less than 1%. (See also No-THC Hemp-seed.) THC= Delta-9 TetraHydroCannabinol.
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