Know the Facts - Change the Law

Know the Facts - Change the Law
Life - Liberty - Pursuit of Happiness

Sunday, April 20, 2008

American Psychiatric Association Assembly Unanimously Backs Medical Marijuana

The American Psychiatric Association Assembly, a top medical organization in the United States, has issued a unanimous statement in support of the decriminalization and medical use of marijuana.

This move debunks a lot of the nonsense from some of the anti-medical marijuana groups. They have been aggressively using false information tactics. These groups allege that there are various links between mental illness and marijuana, ignoring the fact that it is well documented that medical marijuana can be therapeutic.

Far from being a fringe group, the American Psychiatric Association Assembly is an extremely well respected medical organization in the United States. They have issued a very strong and direct statement which their members support unanimously that urges legal protection for patients who have a doctor's prescription for marijuana.

The American Psychiatric Association is the main organization for professional psychiatrists in America. It has 40,000 members and 16 allied organizations, including the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, American Association for Social Psychiatry, American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry, and the American Association of Emergency Psychiatrists.

The paper from the APA Assembly refers to 12 states that already have medical marijuana laws, and says, "The threat of arrest by federal agents, however, still exists. Seriously ill patients living in these states with medical marijuana recommendations from their doctors should not be subjected to the threat of punitive federal prosecution for merely attempting to alleviate the chronic pain, side effects, or symptoms associated with their conditions or resulting from their overall treatment regimens. ... [We] support protection for patients and physicians participating in state approved medical marijuana programs."

There have been many incidents of police arresting those with prescriptions for medical marijuana, as it is still illegal under federal law. This paper was released in hopes that this would no longer happen. As an 83 year old lady (whose name escapes me presently) once said, "What the hell is wrong with being euphoric if you're dying of cancer?" Good question!

In Delaware, there are no laws protecting patients, and no law defining who should be protected. A sensible police officer would look at the proof that cannabis is medicine, that every legitimate study on cannabis use shows it to be relatively harmless, and err on the side of protecting patients. Even recreational use has not PROVEN to be all that dangerous, despite the abuse of prohibition based documentation to the contrary.

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