Tuesday, August 27, 2013

MARIJUANA - THE GROWING MOVEMENT TO LEGALIZE IT AS A MEDICINE

Photo grab off my TV screen

So glad I caught Dr Sanjay Gupta's documentary on "WEED" last Sunday on CNN. If you missed it, you can watch it on Youtube or here (below). Dr Gupta spent one year researching for the documentary, including interviewing people who have used weed as a medicine for their illnesses and ailments. From a skeptic, Dr Sanjay is now a firm believer in the medical benefits of weed and has publicly apologized on CNN for being 'so wrong' about weed, and for misleading the public all these years.

Weed is also known as marijuana, cannabis, pot or simply 'grass'. Supporters of the movement to legalize marijuana must feel vindicated that state governments are finally recognizing marijuana as an alternative medical treatment for cancer and other medical ailments. To date, 20 states in the US have legalized medical marijuana, with more expected to follow suit.



For those who would like some hard facts and statistics to be convinced about the medical benefits of marijuana, do watch the documentary below. It's best to study all the pros and cons before you draw your own conclusions about this controversial hemp. There are plenty of research studies and Youtube documentaries on the subject. Just google it.



Before you set out to purchase some weed or grow some in your garden, be mindful that marijuana is illegal in most countries, including Malaysia and Singapore. In Malaysia where it is known as 'ganja', anyone convicted of selling or possessing 200 grams (seven ounces) of marijuana receives a mandatory DEATH sentence. Period. So be forewarned.

Woodstock 1969 - featuring some of the biggest names in music then,  from Jimi Hendrix to the Grateful Dead; also Santana, Crosby, Stills and  Nash, CCR, Incredible String Band, Ravi Shankar, Janis Joplin, the Who, and Joan Baez. 

This was not the case prior to 1969 when ganja was quite easily available here and one could smoke it anywhere anytime without any issue in this country. In fact, few people knew about marijuana, and even fewer took an interest in it. Who would have thought that a day would come when you could be arrested for smoking these leaves or growing this plant.

Then Woodstock happened in 1969. Three days of young people celebrating love, peace and music in a dairy farm outside New York. Critics would label it three days of sex, drugs and rock n roll. Hoping to ride on the success of the music festival, a group of Woodstock fans here organized a similar festival in Kuala Lumpur. The event was given prominent media coverage the day after. A reporter wrote that the youths who turned up not only enjoyed the music, but also the ganja joints that were openly passed around and smoked. That set off alarm bells within the government, which promptly declared ganja illegal.

But that's another story, and I digress.

Just one of many such clinics in
Venice Beach, LA.
In 2011, I was on a family trip to Los Angeles. While strolling along Venice Beach with my grandchildren I was pleasantly surprised to see a number of marijuana clinics with 'doctors' in white coats prescribing medical marijuana for a small fee.

Marijuana is easily available in LA. But how safe is it for anyone to smoke it, or for a cancer patient to ingest it?

Based on the research and studies conducted, no one has ever died from a marijuana overdose, or suffered adverse side effects. In fact, the opposite is true. There is increasing evidence that taking marijuana does more good than harm.

It is believed that over 200 ailments can be treated with medical marijuana. Some of these are mentioned in the videos above.

Health Benefits of Medical Marijuana 
(click here for the full article and references).
  • prevents blindness from glaucoma
  • controls epileptic seizures
  • stops cancer cells from spreading
  • lowers anxiety
  • slows the progression of Alzheimer's
  • eases the pain of multiple sclerosis
  • reduces the side effects of Hepatitis C treatment
  • treats inflammatory bowel diseases
  • relieves arthritis discomfort
  • stops stuttering
  • relieves insomnia

It's obvious that it's the older generation that will benefit most from medicinal marijuana. Young people smoke marijuana joints or bongs mainly for recreational purposes. If grandma suffers from Alzheimer's, should she be encouraged to smoke pot? If grandpa has stage 4 cancer, should he consider marijuana as an option to treat his cancer? The documentary below provides answers to these questions and others as well.

By the way, as shown in the video "Should Grandma Smoke Pot?", there are other more palatable ways to take marijuana - in cookies, candies and chocolates. There are probably recipes for marijuana fried rice, omelette and soups. Add marijuana tea to the list as well. I wouldn't mind a cup or two the next time I find myself in Venice Beach, LA again... 



1 comment:

Justin Mark said...

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