Tag Archives: medical marijuana

Mother says medical marijuana has helped son, 12


Mother says medical marijuana has helped son, 12

Paul Merrill

WINDHAM, Maine —A Windham mother says medical marijuana has improved the life of her 12-year-old son, who is autistic.

Stephanie Lay said she believes her son Bryce is the youngest person in the State of Maine with a prescription from a medical marijuana doctor for medical marijuana.
Bryce is autistic and suffers from psychotic episodes.
Lay said those episodes can turn violent and in the past have led to Bryce slamming his head into walls and seriously hurting himself.

Lay said Bryce has shown significant improvements since she started giving him medical marijuana.

Gordon Smith, of the Maine Medical Association, told News 8 he’s not surprised to hear of such success, but Smith said his organization still has concerns about doctors prescribing medical marijuana to minors without getting second opinions.

Lay said she would rather give Bryce something natural than deal with the side effects of any more antipsychotic drugs.SOURCE

Hemp legalization added to Senate farm bill

Hemp legalization added to Senate farm bill

By Stephen C. Webster

In a last minute addition to the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2012, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) has submitted an amendment that would legalize the production of industrial hemp, a potential new bumper crop for U.S. farmers.

“Industrial hemp is used in many healthy and sustainable consumer products. However, the federal prohibition on growing industrial hemp has forced companies to needlessly import raw materials from other countries,” Wyden said in prepared text. “My amendment to the Farm Bill will change federal policy to allow U.S. farmers to produce hemp for these safe and legitimate products right here, helping both producers and suppliers to grow and improve Oregon’s economy in the process.”

Allowing American farmers to produce industrial hemp, which is different from its more notorious cousin marijuana, would yield significant and immediate profits the first year, according to an analysis conducted in 1998 (PDF) by the Center for Business and Economic Research at the University of Kentucky.

Researchers found that farmers in the state of Kentucky alone could see between $220 to $605 in net profits per acre of hemp. Adjusted for inflation using the consumer price index, those 1998 dollars would actually be worth $310 and $854 today, although the study’s authors note that variables in supply and demand for hemp could change that valuation.

The average price farmers are getting on an acre of corn, which has been falling thanks to relatively strong supply this year, clocked in at roughly $921 according to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) figures out last week, but their overall take drops significantly due to the costs of production, leaving them in the $200 range on net profits. While a legalized hemp industry would likely never become as essential to Americans as corn, the potential for a high value crop and hundreds of millions, if not billions, in new economic activity is clear.

“This is the first time since the 1950s that language supporting hemp has come to the floor of the House or Senate for a vote. The last time such language was presented was the Miller’s Amendment to the Marihuana Tax Act,” Eric Steenstra, president of the advocacy group Vote Hemp, said in an advisory. “The time is past due for the Senate as well as President Obama and the Attorney General to prioritize the crop’s benefits to farmers and to take action… With the U.S. hemp industry valued at over $400 million in annual retail sales and growing, a change in federal policy to allow hemp farming would mean instant job creation, among many other economic and environmental benefits.”

It’s not clear if the bill has a shot, however. Conservative groups like the Club for Growth are urging Senators to vote against the farm bill, which is under consideration this week, because it has too many attachments unrelated to the agricultural sectors.

The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), has also called on other Senators to stop adding unrelated amendments, which the Senate spent much of Wednesday doing. If the Senate’s top partisans cannot find an agreeable solution to limiting the bill’s amendments, it is likely to languish and die.

The federal government does not differentiate between marijuana and industrial hemp, but it allows the importation of thousands of products made from industrial hemp. President Barack Obama’s drug czar, Gil Kerlikowske, warned as recently as April in comments made online that industrial hemp was a “controlled substance,” which sent hemp advocates on a rhetorical tirade.

Bills seeking to legalize industrial hemp have cleared at least one legislative chamber in 17 states overall, including Maine, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, Vermont and West Virginia, where those bills became law. Scientists say the psychoactive component of marijuana is almost completely undetectable in hemp.
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SOURCE

Road Block – Several States Push For “Stoned Driving” Limits

Road Block – Several States Push For “Stoned Driving” Limits

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by Bean

Attempts to established “stoned driving” limits in California, Colorado, Washington and elsewhere threaten to target all marijuana users, even those wholly unimpaired.

With marijuana legalization initiatives on the ballot in several states this November, lawmakers across the country have begun pushing a new legislative strategy for targeting cannabis users, one with the potential to strip every one of them of their ability to legally operate a motor vehicle, even if it’s been weeks since the last time they smoked a joint.

While it’s already a crime everywhere in the country to drive a car while impaired by any substance, a new push in California, Colorado, Washington, and elsewhere to set specific limits for the amount of THC in the blood or urine of drivers has marijuana advocates concerned.

In Colorado and Washington, both of which could vote to legalize in 2012, debate continues regarding setting a limit of 5 nanograms of THC per milliliter of blood. While in California, representative Norma Torres of Pomona has introduced AB 2552, a bill that would create a zero-tolerance policy for any driver found with any amount of cannabinoids in their body, making them effectively guilty of DUI.

“Since cannabinoids remain in the system for days or weeks after last use, the bill would effectively outlaw driving by every marijuana user in the state,” Dale Gieringer, head of California NORML, noted in a prepared statement.

“There is no scientific basis for zero-tolerance DUI standards. To begin with, there is no relationship between impairment and the presence of cannabinoids in urine. Secondly, there is no relationship between impairment and the presence of non-psychoactive cannabinoid metabolites in blood. Third, there is extensive evidence that safe driving is not incompatible with low levels of active THC in the blood.”

SOURCE

Life in Prison for possession of a Half-Ounce of Medical Marijuana

Facing life in prison for a half Ounce of medical marijuana

Alex Webb

Well now, all other crimes will have to wait, there’s a pothead out there trying to score. Why waste the time chasing rapists, murders and meth manufacturers when it’s so much easier to nab a stoner. How is it that governments and law enforcement is so against marijuana, but supports viewing the killing of a world leader on TV? We have Disney and Nickelodeon trying desperately to sell sex to our children, and with the rise of child sex offenders their efforts are paying off, but if someone smokes a plant they’re attacked as if they were Hitler. I guess none of these Middle aged mothers taking their clothes off for Justin Bieber ever sparked a joint and watched the Big Lebowski. Which one of those statements sounds more illegal? But lets digress…

20-Year-old Chris Diaz is an asthma sufferer from Texas. After learning medical marijuana was a successful treatment for asthma, he headed to Dank Nation Dispensary in California seeking medical treatment. Diaz was approved for medical marijuana in California for his serious condition, so he stocked up on what he could afford and headed back to his home town in Texas.

He was pulled over on a Texas highway for having an expired license tag, a routine traffic stop. But when Diaz wasn’t able to produce a drivers’ license or proof of insurance this alerted the police officer. Already in custody for a criminal offense, the officer began to search Diaz’s car. They found 14 grams of medical marijuana and hashish, medical marijuana is not legal in Texas nor do they recognize medical cannabis cards from other states.

Under Texas law, Marijuana possession of less then 2 ounces is a Class B misdemeanor that is punishable with fines and up to six months in jail. But the hash is a totally different story, possession of hashish is a Class 2 felony punishable by up to 20 years including fines if less then 4 grams. Diaz can only wish he was so lucky.

He is charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver, a half ounce must be “Big Time” in Texas. Diaz was indicted by a Brown County grand jury, and now he faces up to life in prison, and without his much needed medication. He is now in jail on a $40,000 bond awaiting trial.

Why is Texas so worried about a small amount of pot, so much to the extent to take someone’s entire life away? Diaz’s real crime was driving in an unregistered plates and without a license and insurance. Some stiff fines and community service will nip that in the bud, but to focus on some small amount of marijuana and treating him like a murder is just plain BS. No one is saying Diaz is innocent, but at the ripe age of 20 he deserves the opportunity to become a valuable citizen. Moral of the story is, stay away from Texas!

SOURCE

Cannabis ‘could stop dementia in its tracks’

Cannabis ‘could stop dementia in its tracks’

By Fiona Macrae

Cannabis may help keep Alzheimer’s disease at bay.

In experiments, a marijuana-based medicine triggered the formation of new brain cells and cut inflammation linked to dementia.

The researchers say that using the information to create a pill suitable for people could help prevent or delay the onset of Alzheimer’s.

A medicine based on cannabis (right) could help to delay the onset of Alzheimer’s

The incurable disease affects 400,000 Britons, with around 500 new cases diagnosed every day as people live longer.

For some sufferers, drugs can delay the progress of devastating symptoms such as memory loss and the erosion of ability to do everyday things such as washing.

However, there they do not work for everyone and, with the number of patients forecast to double in a generation, there is a desperate need for new treatments.

The US researchers studied the properties of a man-made drug based on THC, the chemical behind the ‘high’ of cannabis.

When elderly rats were given the drug for three weeks, it improved their memory, making it easier for them to find their way round a water maze, the Society for Neuroscience’s annual conference heard yesterday (WEDS).

Researcher Dr Yannick Marchalant said; ‘Old rats are not very good at that task. When we gave them the drug, it made them a little better at that task.’

Other experiments showed that the drug acts on parts of the brain involved in memory, appetite, pain and mood.

The Ohio State University experiments also showed that the drug cut inflammation in the brain and may trigger the production of new neurons or brain cells.

Researcher Professor Gary Wenk said: ‘When we’re young, we produce neurons and our memory works fine.

When we age, the process slows down, so we have a decrease in new cell formation through normal ageing.

‘You need these cells to come back and help form new memories and we found that this THC-like agent can influence the creation of these cells.’

Although the drug used was not suitable for use in people, the results could aid the creation of new medicines for Alzheimer’s.

It is likely such a drug would be taken to prevent the disease, rather than treat it.

Asked if those with a family history of Alzheimer’s should smoke cannabis to prevent them developing the disease, Dr Wenk said: ‘We’re not saying that but it might actually work.

‘What we are saying its that it appears that a safe, legal substance that mimics the important properties of marijuana can work on the brain to prevent memory impairments in ageing. So that’s really hopeful.’

Dr Marchalant added: ‘We hope a compound can be found that can target both inflammation and neurogenesis, which would be the most efficient way to produce the best effects.’

The medicinal properties of cannabis have already been harnessed to treat multiple sclerosis.

Sativex, a cannabis-based drug, has been shown to ease the symptoms of multiple sclerosis, including pain, spasms, shaking, depression and anxiety.

The Alzheimer’s Society cautioned against using cannabis itself to stave off dementia.

Professor Clive Ballard, the charity’s director of research, said: ‘There are encouraging findings from studies with animals suggesting that some cannabis derivatives may help protect nerve cells in the brain.

‘We therefore look forward to robust clinical trials into potential benefits of non-psychoactive components of cannabis.

‘It is important for people to note that these treatments are not same as recreational cannabis use which can be potentially harmful.’

Read more: SOURCE

Tiny town is Oregon’s No. 1 hub for pot growers

Tiny town is Oregon’s No. 1 hub for pot growers

WILLIAMS, Ore. – Medical marijuana has taken root in this idyllic town like nowhere else in Oregon.

Nearly 20 percent of the population is registered to grow pot legally, and an untold number deals it illegally, creating stark contrasts in a bucolic burg where children still ring the bell to start the school day and pancake breakfasts draw a crowd at the local community center.

The Associated Press analyzed the locations of registered pot growers in Oregon based on their ZIP codes and found that Williams by far has the heaviest concentration. More than 400 of the town’s 2000 residents are authorized by the state to grow up to six plants each.

CBSNews.com Special Report: Marijuana Nation

The proliferation of pot became the talk of the town last summer when new Google Earth satellite images showed little green circles in neat rows all over the valley.

My daughter showed me on her iPhone,” said Neil Sinnott, owner of a local cafe. “She said, `Dad, look what your neighbors are doing.”‘


Six-foot-tall fences that screen marijuana gardens from public view have become so common that a local pastor uses them as landmarks for giving directions. One resident is trying to capitalize on the growing popularity of medical marijuana by starting a testing lab. A variety of marijuana grown here, called Williams Wonder, is cherished among pot connoisseurs.

Though big-city Portland has cafes where medical marijuana users smoke pot while singing karaoke, it is the rural communities of southwestern Oregon like Williams that have the highest percentages of folks smoking it, growing it and caring for others who use the drug.

Neighboring towns in Josephine County have high rates of pot growers similar to the 19.5 percent in Williams: O’Brien was at 15.2 percent; Selma at 10.5 percent; and Cave Junction at 9.9 percent, according to the AP analysis.

One ZIP code covering mostly rural residences shows 60 out of 80 residents with permits. The Oregon Health Authority will not provide any identifying information of pot growers and patients beyond their ZIP codes for patient confidentiality reasons. It will not provide information on ZIP codes with fewer than 50 cardholders, also for confidentiality reasons.

Medical marijuana has been growing in popularity statewide since becoming legal in 1999. The number of residents registered as patients, caregivers and growers this year hit 120,945, nearly four times the number five years ago. Few who ask to register are turned down. Only 950 applications — less than 1 percent — were terminated, denied or suspended.

The number of people authorized to grow for others has also mushroomed, from 12,274 in 2006 to 26,734 in 2010. In Williams, the number jumped from 122 to 301 in the same period.

Why has pot become so big in Williams? The reasons seem to be a combination of an ideal climate, remote and rural location and a willingness to live and let live.

Southwestern Oregon sits at the northern tip of the Emerald Triangle, one of the nation’s best marijuana growing regions, which stretches into Northern California. Pot has been grown here since California hippies started moving in during the 1970s. When Oregon’s medical marijuana law took effect in 1999, “a lot of those guys got their cards and came out of the woods and started doing it legally,” said Keith Mansur, editor of the Oregon Cannabis Connection, a newspaper devoted to marijuana issues based in nearby Medford.

Laird Funk is a longtime activist who lost his job running the sewage treatment plant in nearby Grants Pass several years ago after testing positive for marijuana. Funk, now the chairman of the state medical marijuana advisory committee, says the weather is conducive to growing pot, but securing the crop can become complicated.

“It’s not hard to do out here in the sunshine,” he said. “Everybody does some variation of security. Some people use chain link. Some solid wood. Some people dress up like Vietnam and walk around with guns. But you could kill people like that, so I don’t.”

Williams took its name from an Indian fighter during the Gold Rush of the 1850s. After the gold played out, logging and dairy farms also waned. Now the valley is a mix of organic farmers, people cobbling together a living from odd jobs, mushroom picking, and California retirees and commuters.

Williams Community Church Pastor Rob Culton said he can feel community tensions rise at harvest time in the fall, when the threat increases of someone stealing a crop. But he does not condemn anyone. His wife took doctor-prescribed pills with a cannabis extract while having chemotherapy for cancer in the 1980s.

“I wouldn’t want that to be something where a person would say, `I can’t go to that church because I have a medical marijuana permit,”‘ he said.

A few long-time residents like Ben Watts remember when as many as four sawmills were running in Williams before they all shut down in the 1980s. A logger all his life, at 83 he still cuts firewood from the gold claim his grandfather worked. He is no fan of police, he says, but he would like for them to crack down on growers, particularly those selling pot illegally.

In 2009, a Williams couple growing for 11 patients was busted for having 220 pounds, far in excess of the 16.5 pounds allowed by law. Police said they learned of the site from a man stopped on Interstate 5, who said he was taking $9,100 there to buy marijuana. Because it was a first offense, the couple served just a month in jail after pleading no contest to delivery of drugs.

Just how much marijuana is being sold illegally by medical marijuana growers in Willliams, or anywhere in Oregon, is impossible to say. Police keep no statistics.

Mansur said marijuana growing is adding “big time” to the local economy through sales of potting soil, fertilizer, special pots that won’t constrict the roots — even vacuum sealing machines to package the dried buds.

The prevalence of medical marijuana led Richard Reams, who teaches the art of growing trees into living sculptures, to open OregonGreen Lab. For $120 he will test a gram of marijuana and tell you the potency and active ingredients. One large grower has already signed up.

“I believe that in a short amount of time we will have legalized marijuana,” Reams said. “The economic opportunities in that field could be large.

John Rickert worked for a health insurance company in San Diego before retiring to Williams. He regularly writes grants to fund programs for the elementary school.

Rickert said many people are just getting by economically, with most kids qualifying for free school lunches, but he sees a lot of people paying cash for dinners out and vacations when a credit card would be more convenient.

Still, Rickert said he’s not bothered about the shift in the local economy from timber to pot.

“Everybody wants to cut the trees”
to increase revenues for the county and schools, he said. “Forget cutting the trees. Let’s legalize marijuana.”

SOURCE

Boy, two, with brain cancer is ‘cured’ after secretly being fed medical marijuana by his father

Boy, two, with brain cancer is ‘cured’ after secretly being fed medical marijuana by his father

By Daily Mail Reporter

A desperate father whose son was suffering from a life-threatening brain tumour has revealed he gave him cannabis oil to ease his pain. And he has now apparently made a full recovery.

Cash Hyde, known as Cashy, was a perfectly healthy baby when he was born in June 2008 but became sick shortly before his second birthday.

At first he was misdiagnosed with glandular fever before his parents Mike and Kalli, from Missoula in Montana, were given the devastating news he had a serious brain tumour.

The little boy had to have arduous chemotherapy treatment to reduce the growth, which had drastic side effects including seizures and a blood infection.



Mike Hyde with his son Cash who was diagnosed with a severe brain tumour

Cash had to have high-dose chemotherapy which made him very ill

His distraught parents were repeatedly told he was likely to succumb to the illness because the condition was so bad.

After one bout of high-dose chemotherapy, Cash was so weak he could not lift his head and was too sick to eat any solid food for 40 days.

It was at this point that Mr Hyde decided to take action and go down the route of medical marijuana to try to help his young son.

Cash’s doctors refused to even discuss the option but his father went and sought authorisation elsewhere and then secretly administered it through his son’s feeding tube.

He also told doctors to stop giving Cash the cocktail of anti-nausea drugs he had been taking – although he never told them what he was doing.

Mr Hyde told KXLY News that his son started looking better right away.

Cash’s father secretly gave him medical marijuana through a feeding tube



The youngster with his older brother Colty as he is treated in hospital

Mr Hyde said: ‘He hadn’t eaten a thing in 40 days – and, it was really incredible to watch him take a bite of a piece of cheese. It shows that he wants to live’.

He credits the cannabis oil with helping his son get through the chemo, and say Cash has now been declared cancer free by doctors.

The boy is now back and home and living the life of a typical young boy, playing with his elder brother Colty.

Medical marijuana is legal in some states, including Montana, but its use for children is poorly understood and quite rate.

The US federal government does not recognise the legality of using the drug for medical reasons and frequently clashes with states over the issue.

Mr Hyde told KXLY: ‘It’s very controversial, it’s very scary. But, there’s nothing more scary than losing your child.’



Cash is now at home and able to live like a normal little boy

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-1383240/Boy-brain-cancer-cured-secretly-fed-medical-marijuana-father.html#ixzz1LR3K6Irg