Why cannabis must be legalized – a non-user’s perspective

The federal government recently refused to reclassify cannabis, stating it still hasn’t been proven to have medical value. Of course, it’s a tough thing to prove when the government allows very limited research on the subject. And to be honest, even if they do reclassify it, we don’t much care anymore. We want full legalization, even though neither Alex’s mother nor myself use cannabis. Why?

Simple: recreational use just doesn’t matter. If somebody really and truly wastes their life feeding an addiction all day every day, that’s up to them, and chances are they’re already doing it. Maybe with illegal pot, maybe with legal alternatives like alcohol. Maybe with something totally unrelated like video games, internet porn, or whatever. But pot itself isn’t the problem with people like this – it’s about as addictive as caffeine. Only a handful of people will actually abuse pot to the point of it affecting their daily lives.

And heck, I’d rather see a bunch of people throwing their lives away to pot than alcohol. At least the high folks are fairly safe to be around.

Additionally, in places where cannabis has been legalized or decriminalized, use hasn’t skyrocketed. Depending on your source, you can find “proof” that use has gone up or that it’s gone down, but no studies even hint that the more 420-friendly nations have had concerning societal problems due to cannabis being more available and accepted.

So if we accept that recreational use is no big deal, then we still have one question: why not just be happy with medical cannabis laws?

Easy answers:

  • The federal government is full of SHIT on this issue and won’t allow cannabis to be rescheduled, so medical laws are still at odds with the federal government – which means places like Alex’s home can cite federal law to avoid dosing a person who could truly benefit.
  • Along the same lines, the government will push fake therapies on us like Marinol: a synthetic, pure THC pill which costs MORE than black-market cannabis, and lacks CBD, CBN, and other extremely beneficial cannabinoids! THC by itself is just unpleasant from what I’ve heard, and even the super-high-THC strains of cannabis still have some amount of the other cannabinoids. To put it another way, if nature offers us the whole plant, the government has no right to try and push synthetics that only have one small piece of that plant unless very clear and obvious evidence shows the other components are dangerous. (So far, the only cannabinoid anybody is actually afraid of is THC, and this plant has been with us since the dawn of man)
  • Medical cannabis laws have been considered a joke by so many that some states are really cracking down – deciding who is “sick enough” to get medical cannabis. Even here in Oregon, we couldn’t have gotten Alex on the OMMP (Oregon Medical Marijuana Program) without his seizure disorder. Intense self-injurious behaviors wouldn’t be enough.
  • In states where cannabis is now legal, a person in need can get a small amount of cannabis from a friend (or in CO grow their own) and try it THAT VERY DAY. We didn’t have that option – it took weeks to get an appointment, get approval from the doctor, and get a dose to try out. It’s impossible to say for sure, but we feel those weeks could have made a huge difference in terms of figuring out the right strain and dosing if we’d had better options like somebody in CO might have.
  • We’ve given the government time to accept medical use, and they keep saying, “hell no”. Full legalization in CO and WA has forced a new conversation to take place, and the more states that force this conversation, the more likely kids like Alex will have a new option.

So whether it’s 2014 or 2016, if you live in a state that puts legalization on the ballot, please remember that legalizing can be of tremendous value to medical users, especially in states where medical laws are jumbled and confusing, or where patients are left with almost no guidance on the issue.


And for the skeptics: you pay for a pee test and I’ll take it. A few people somehow actually think Alex’s story is a front to get me high. It’s appalling, but I guess that’s what happens with nearly a century of propaganda against cannabis.

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8 Responses to Why cannabis must be legalized – a non-user’s perspective

  1. Laura says:

    The FDA played a similar game with red yeast rice from China. Red yeast rice contains statins to help control cholesterol in the blood. The FDA allowed companies to extract lovastatin (sound familiar?), making pharmaceuticals with very dangerous side effects, and then BANNED red yeast rice in 2001. It doesn’t make sense to extract what you think is the active ingredient and then ban the whole food source. Your example concerning THC is exactly the same. The fact is that these medicines work best using all of the present and available compounds involved in the whole plant, and it tends to be safer on the whole. We can all tell you that eating an orange is better than taking a vitamin C pill. Why? Because oranges contain more nutrients than vitamin C (ie: beta carotene and calcium), and some of those nutrients can even help your body absorb that vitamin C and not just pee it out as is largely the case with high dose supplements. Everyone who has ever felt pain relief from medical marijuana is well aware of the cannabinoid levels of CBD in a quality kush strain vs. others. THC isn’t the only active compound, making melanol greatly inadequate. Peace and love to your family. Support is out there – be brave and know there are many people on your side – there is a better future ahead.

    • Dad says:

      The FDA can suck it.

      They wouldn’t approve Vigabatrin for ages when it was used elsewhere, and it was the one medication that actually STOPPED Alex’s very dangerous infantile spasms. We had to wait weeks for it to ship from Canada, watching our little baby boy suffer through some of the worst seizures that exist (they’re subtle, but very damaging from what we understand). The very day we gave him his first dose, the spasms were gone. Hmm, unknown medication or brain-damaging seizures that happen dozens of times a day? Tough decision.

      It’s tough for us to trust the FDA on much of anything anymore. They’ll fast-track dangerous meds that bring in lots of money, drag their heels on semi-dangerous meds like Vigabatrin which have benefits that far outweigh the risks (but don’t necessarily make much money due to the more niche market), and completely lie about things like Marinol.

  2. David DelVecchio says:

    The FDA used to put cannabinoids in most our medicine from 1850-1940, and the US government currently holds a patent for the medicinal cannabis being effective for many ailments. These two things alone should raise a lot of questions as to why its illegal now. Its prohibition is for nothing but profit. The pharmaceutical, tobacco, alcohol, prison, plastics, and lumber corporations are the biggest lobbyist against cannabis. They stand to lose a lot of profit. They do not want people to cure themselves. Its really quite disturbing.

  3. Dr Jo says:

    As an ASD sufferer I can fully sympathise with your plight. And I fully agree with David DelVeccio’s analyses of the situation. To add more to this viewpoint I believe cannabis will never be legalised in western nations for similar global financial reasons. If we in the west were to legalise cannabis then all of those countries most indebted to the word bank (sters), would have a simple to grow easy to harvest top dollar crop, they could pay off their debts quickly and the banksters would be left owning nothing (instead of everything, read water, forestry and mineral rights). This is why I believe their will never be a relaxation in the laws surrounding cannabis. I know this doesn’t help but I think it’s an important part of the puzzle when trying to understand why our governments attitudes seem to be in contradiction to the amassing evidence for genuine medical use of cannabinoids (inc. high CBD low THC strains for autism sufferers).

  4. Melody says:

    My baby cousin is suffering from infantile spasms, and her mom is trying to get her tincture low in thc and high in cbd, and the government is trying to get involved. She has a lawyer now, and we Erie in a 420 friendly state, CA. I have been trying to do some research to help her out, and just trying to learn more about infantile spasms in general, and I believe it’s ridiculous that she is being denied a much safer form of treatment for her daughter as they try and force steroid therapy on her. You should shoot me an email and tell me more about how this worked for Alex, if you have the time 3xthechaos@gmail.com

  5. Stephen Patterson says:

    High THC strains are better for most diseases, like cancer for example. Don’t smoke the marijuana but make an oil out of the cannabis strains and the cure is just days away.

  6. P. Boyer says:

    I too have a son with autism. It’s a shame the government can mandate poisonous vaccines that mame and kill, all done with impunity, offering our children only more of the same poisonous medications after the fact, that have yet move devastating side effects while preventing them from receiving safe alternatives. They ought to be ashamed, first for causing this devastating catastrophe, to hundreds of thousands of infants and secondly for withholding any medication that might in any way alleviate the suffering. We should all support this therapy because it’s safe and it works.

  7. Rachel Altork says:

    The videos of Alex bruised and in pain are heartbreaking, I am so glad you have found this natural plant to be effective in alleviating the suffering!!! I wanted to offer just some info which I hope could be helpful in some small way (or lead to helpful questions at least). 1) there are safe ways to inhale through the airways: vaporizers and steamers 2) the route of entry may be a factor since his symptoms stem from neural issues rather than the parts of the body that are blood/tissue

    I am no expert but maybe this could lead to a discussion with someone who knows more than me.