Educating Marijuana Legalization Opponents
The other day, Jeff Sessions held a closed meeting with a group of individuals to discuss drug policy. He started out the meeting by mentioning his dislike for marijuana, and that a sensible policy must be implemented. However, everyone in the room is known to be against marijuana legalization, so how are we expected to achieve a “sensible” drug policy with only one opinion being represented at the “roundtable” meeting? We cannot.
Many have covered Sessions dislike for the miracle plant, and even we have several times. However, maybe we should try a different tactic. In his meeting, Sessions mentioned the need to “educate the public” regarding the harms of marijuana. Well, we are going to educate Sessions and the people in the closed meeting about the benefits of marijuana. And, we are not going to cite the usual arguments, but instead will cite scientific journals that contain recent scientific studies.
Scientific Journals and Studies regarding benefits of Marijuana Legalization
Journal Name: JAMA, the Journal of the American Medical Association. Dated 7/25/2017.
Cannabidiol (CBD) reduced the frequency of convulsive seizures compared with placebo in Dravet syndrome, a childhood epilepsy disorder with a high mortality rate and no approved treatment in the United States, reported a clinical trial in the New England Journal of Medicine. [Link]
Journal Name: Trends in Pharmacological Sciences. Dated March 2017.
CBD is an intriguing agent of unparalleled pharmacological diversity that is nevertheless surprisingly benign in all its observed effects. Its use has become widespread in certain geographical areas, particularly in ‘legal’ states in the USA, and it is on the threshold of becoming an approved pharmaceutical agent in intractable epilepsies. Given this current nouvelle richesse following its long history of obscurity, it is incumbent upon the scientific and medical communities to understand better the mechanisms of action of CBD, its limitations, and particularly the myths and misconceptions that its meteoric rise in popularity have engendered. [Link]
Journal Name: Frontiers in Pharmacology. Dated December 2016.
In summary, CBD had bidirectional effects on the extinction of contextual fear conditioning, depending on the nature of the initial fear conditioning. Nevertheless, in the more translationally-relevant stronger conditioning setting, CBD both acutely inhibited fear expression and enhanced extinction to produce longer lasting reductions in fear. These observations provide further support for the potential translational use of CBD in conditions such as posttraumatic stress disorder and specific phobias. [Link]
Journal Name: Pharmacological Research. Dated October 2016.
As for other effects of this remarkable phytocannabinoid, the neuroprotective properties of CBD seem to depend on several cannabinoid-dependent and independent mechanisms. Despite the mechanisms involved, however, the preclinical evidence reviewed here, associated with the already reported safety profile of CBD in humans, clearly indicate that CBD represents a new opportunity for the treatment of several brain disorders (such as neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric) where neuronal loss or damage plays a significant role. [Link]
Journal Name: American Journal of Public Health. Dated February 2017.
Our study suggests that, on average, MMLs (Medical Marijuana Laws) are associated with reductions in traffic fatalities, particularly pronounced among those aged 25 to 44 years, a group representing a great percentage of all registered patients for medical marijuana use,29 and with increased prevalence of marijuana use after the enactment of MMLs. [Link]
We realize it is challenging to change a mind that is old, and stubborn, but we must try. It is our responsibility to use science and research to prove our points that cannabis does not belong on the Schedule I list of the CSA. We also know that the CSA was created by the Nixon Administration as a political tool to go after their enemies, and every administration has done the same thing since then. Marijuana is not a harmful substance, and cannot be called one because of outdated “opinions.” Such “opinions” must be based on sound research and science, which can only be done when cannabis is removed from the Schedule I list.