Supporters of medical marijuana Congress seek change

By KAREN TANG
Capital News Service

WASHINGTON –
For some time, medical marijuana has been a controversy round
among experts, veterans and the public. So the passage of Senate last
month of legislation allowing physicians Veterans Health Administration to
authorize the use of medical marijuana for patients marked a victory for
supporters.

“We support medical marijuana,” Michael said
Collins, deputy director of the Drug Policy Alliance. “There has been a
number of studies showing the positive effects of medical marijuana
disorder veterans with post-traumatic stress. “

On the eve of Veterans
Day, the Senate approved the spending bill Veterans Affairs. the
the United States.

For many veterans living with PTSD, legislation seems much up.

US
Navy veterans T. J. Thompson, of Chesapeake, Va., Expressed his feelings
about their struggles to access medical marijuana. “It sucks,” he said.

“They
spent so much time breaking us down (in the army), “Thompson said.
“However, they like throwing us on the sidewalk, once we’re out.”

Thompson,
suffering from PTSD, I tried using prescription drugs from
Department of Veterans Affairs prescribed, but he has found
addictive. participate in forms (VA) of I said they were the right ways
healing, and I knew it was complete and utter B. S., “he said.
“They’re trying to get addicted to lying and not being able to fight for
our own rights. “

Thompson has worked with veterans of Medicine
Cannabis access, Americans for Safe Access, Drug Policy Alliance and
Marijuana Policy Project for lawmakers to legalize medical marijuana
at the national level. 23 states and the capital have enacted laws to legalize medical
marijuana for medical purposes, the plant remains illegal under the
federal law.

VA According to studies, there is no evidence that
It shows that marijuana is an effective treatment for veterans with PTSD.
Those who use marijuana for PTSD have a hard time to stop,
the agency said.

The VA also reported that marijuana use
It is associated with a variety of medical side effects such as chronic
bronchitis, impaired short-term memory, poor motor coordination and
the inability to drive properly. It can also cause psychiatric problems
as psychosis and impaired cognitive ability.

However, not everyone agrees.

In a CBS News, 53 percent of adults nationwide think that the use of marijuana should be legal.

“As
a doctor myself, I find that particularly when working with patients
with PTSD (PTSD), it is important to
an open discussion about how their treatment, “said Dr. Malik
Burnett, medical resident at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public
Health. medical marijuana, Burnett said he has found two things that can
result: “One, veterans may be not fully revealing all that
They are used to help your PTSD and then two, which may require
questions. “

As a resident in the metropolitan area of ​​Hampton Roads
in southeastern Virginia, Thompson had to seek treatment elsewhere because
their status forbids talking to doctors about VA medical
marijuana.

There have been a constant problem for those veterans who rely on VA doctors for medical care.

“Looking
in the perspective view of the veterans, who are already experiencing
many of the headwinds coming, coming home from combat, and I think (the
inability to talk about medical marijuana) is another of those
headwinds they face, “Burnett said.

Advances in Congress

advocates of medical marijuana have been trying to change federal law.

” We are
fighting tooth and nail, “his companion Thompson said, referring
veterans. “We are trying to fight this monopoly damage
government and we are making progress – just not enough progress “

However, it seems that Congress is softening its historic opposition to soften the rules of marijuana

.” The aim is to access. medical marijuana if (veterans) they need to cope with their disease, “Collins said.

While
the Senate has acted on funding veterans with medical bill
modification of marijuana, no action has been taken in the House. NEEDS TO BE
changed his life for the better, “Collins said.

While in the Navy 1998 and 2004 Thompson suffered from mental health problems.

Those issues had Thompson in their breaking point . Thompson said, “I will try these pills because I’m literally at my wits’ end.”

he was released on anticonvulsant and antidepressant drugs, but said it only made it worse.

Recipes
which can increase the feeling of suicidal thoughts, you can not find
the use of medical marijuana, Burnett said.

Thompson recalls the
first attempted suicide. It was on a ship of the Navy when he
He appeared a whole bottle of pills seizures her and tried to cut his wrist
with a modeling knife.

The second suicide attempt involved an overdose of Ativan (a medication for anxiety), while consumption of alcohol.

The struggle pushed him toward medical marijuana.

“I was already scared to death, but the pills I was dead scared,” Thompson said. “Medical marijuana has dropped me those pills.”

According
Collins, veterans think painkillers are addictive and have pouted
effects, which is why they are switched to medical marijuana.

Thompson said chemical painkillers had a feeling for them and made him feel like a robot.

“When
side effects of current therapies first line are compared (for example,
prescription drugs) for PTSD, along with the side effects of marijuana,
really it does not make sense why marijuana can not be considered
option, “Burnett said.

Only 12 percent of people think that using marijuana can be harmful to the health of a person, according to CBS News.

medical marijuana has changed his life significantly, Thompson said.

“it is
is the most effective treatment for me and my therapist agrees, “he
He said. National Institutes of Health, PTSD affects about 7.7 million Americans.
Up to 30 percent of victims of PTSD are military veterans, while around
seven percent are civilians, according to the Veterans Administration.

“When
introduce a trauma to the brain, which enters a process
fight or flight and that is how I live every day, “Thompson said.

PTSD Thompson has been in the bay since the use of medical marijuana.

” I
did not like being in crowds, “he said.” I still do not. However, I am
able to address and solve these problems much more positively when
I quote end quote ‘stoned or high.’ “

According to a study
New Mexico done by the Journal of psychoactive drugs, symptoms of PTSD
a reduction of 75 percent in patients who use medical marijuana.

How often smoke medical marijuana Thompson?

“As
often as I take a break, “he said. Thompson said he takes each
hour and a half to two hours, which is the frequency with which we would have taken the
Ativan if I was still in it.

In Thompson’s eyes, he is not an addict to medical marijuana.

“I
use it like any other person may use any other type of drug, “he said.
“In any case, it is minimizing my use of any other drug.”

Burnett
He said it is interesting that some people assume medical
marijuana is addictive without looking closely at the data. About him

Problems with marijuana

Medical
marijuana advocates have yet to convince a lot of fight against drugs
and police officials who argue that the benefits of cannabis are
exaggerated.

“What really bothers me is the notion that
medical marijuana is also … because it’s not, “said Chuck Rosenberg,
administrator Drug Enforcement Administration acting,
according to an article by CBS News.

Rosenberg, a federal ex
prosecutor in Virginia and Texas, called medical marijuana “a joke”.
According to him, the leaf of marijuana is not safe and is not effective
as a medicine.

Rosenberg’s comment hit with some medical nerves
marijuana advocates. A petition to President Barack Obama
Rosenberg Fire has more than 28,000 signatures, according to HuffPost
Politics. opponent of medical marijuana. But Harris, who is a doctor
believes that there needs to be more research on marijuana to see if it
medical value.

“We have to know one way or another (if)
marijuana has medical uses generalized people claim, “Harris said in a
US News Article. people that marijuana “actually has a very limited utility in the
smoked crude product, “he said.

However, supporters say it is the science behind the product.

” It’s just a matter of federal policy be out of step with both science … and the public, “he said.

according
to a CNN poll, 90 percent of Americans think that patients should
be allowed to use medical marijuana if their doctor recommends it.

“There
are data suggesting that while 10 percent of people who use
marijuana may develop a physical dependence, it is significantly lower
a variety of other drugs, both legal and illegal, “Burnett
He said.

He said that there has been progress, but it has been an uphill battle trying to change the federal regulation of medical marijuana.

But
Obama, who has an influence on the legalization of medical marijuana in a
national level would like to see more research on the subject.

“I
think carefully prescribed medical use of marijuana may indeed
appropriate and we should follow science as opposed to the ideology of
this issue, “he said in April in an interview for the CNN documentary
“Weed 3: The revolution of marijuana.”

By Thompson and many others living with PTSD scientific research can help them lead a better life.

“We
you need the president to stand up for ourselves and fight for our rights as
veterans, because we protect because he is our commander in chief ”
Thompson said.
“Supporters of medical marijuana Congress seek change ” is replublished article http://thefutureofcannabisintheworld.blogspot.com/2015/12/medical-marijuana-supporters-look-for.html