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Bill to legalize marijuana front and center in Raleigh

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The debate over legalizing medical marijuana is not a new one, but it is going to be front and center in Raleigh Thursday. The House Health Committee will hold a public hearing on a bill that's been introduced to legalize marijuana for medical purposes. One Oak Island man is in full support of House Bill 1380, based on his own first-hand experience. "It's time we come out of the dark ages and look at marijuana as it is, a medicine, and not a hard core drug," said David Warren. David Warren is pushing for pot to be legalized in North Carolina, as an option for people suffering from debilitating medical conditions. It is already legal in 13 states. "Marijuana is not addictive. It's a drug that causes little side effects. I think people should have a choice in medicine," Warren said. Warren is in full support of House Bill 1380, which would protect seriously ill patients from getting arrested and going to jail for smoking marijuana if recommended by a doctor. Warren said, "Those who are sick don't belong in jail. They need to be treated with care, love, and respect." Warren uses his own experience to back up his case. He was arrested in 2005 for growing marijuana to smoke while being treated for Hepatitis C. He said he also suffers from post traumatic stress disorder and a seizure disorder. "I looked at the data, I looked at the studies, and I decided that rather than take narcotics, I would rather have something non-addictive." Warren said the law would tax those who grow marijuana for themselves or others, bringing those tax dollars into the Tar Heel state. He is happy to see the issue reach Raleigh, and said there is plenty of room for an open and fair debate. "I believe that God made the marijuana. I've never seen an Oxycodone bush," said Warren. The House Health Committee's public hearing is at noon Thursday in Raleigh.

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MEDICAL MARIJUANA

I WORKED MOST OF MY LIFE IN THE MEDICAL FIELD(34) YEARS. AS A PARAMEDIC ANSWERING THOUSANDS OF AMBULANCE CALLS, I NEVER RESPONDED TO A CALL WHERE MARIJUANA CAUSED A FIGHT,INJURY,ACCIDENT ECT..UNLIKE THE NUMEROUS CALLS RECEIVED FOR ALCOHOL.BE COMPASSIONATE AND LEGALIZE IT! IF YOU OR YOUR PARENTS NEEDED IT,WHAT WOULD YOU DO?? IT IS PROVEN TO RELIEVE NAUSEA,INCREASE APPETITE,CALM PEOPLE,DIMINISH PAIN.WE ALL KNOW THAT IT IS SAFE. DONT BE IGNORANT. EVEN A TAX ON THIS PRODUCT COULD REDUCE THE DEFICIT,IMPROVE HEALTH CARE,INCREASE JOBS IN N.C. IT IS TIME FOR A CHANGE IN HEALTH CARE TO HELP INPROVE THE QUALITY OF LIFE IN SICK PATIENTS.

caps lock--- gets the point

caps lock--- gets the point across

legally available in the United States until 1937

For all it's misunderstanding, one poster correctly stated that it was legal until 1937. At that time, the only reason that it was singled out was as a means to remove the Mexicans who had immigrated into the southern border states.( I know this sounds racist, but it's true the Governors wanted to purge "undesirables" from their states.) "Illegal Drugs and how they got that way" program on the History channel. Its a very interesting program that shows the hysteria around weed. It also shows how a bureaucrat with a lust for power used the print media of the Hearst Newspapers to terrorize readers into believing that weed was akin to the govt propaganda film "reefer madness". The tactics the government used was to require that you have a tax stamp if you were in possession of weed. The only problem was that you had to have the weed before they would issue a tax stamp, which made you guilty of POSSESSION WITHOUT A TAX STAMP. Similar to the previous machine gun tax stamp. Only very few stamps were issued due to the government control of the programs. Since then we've seen the war on drugs drag on and on with no end in sight. Otherwise law abiding people have gotten stains on their spotless records for simple possession of a pipe with only pot residue. It's time to wake up and have an honest debate about the pros and cons of the evil weed. But, it should be done with facts, and not govt hype and hysteria.

This is Perfect!!

I agree fully marijuana has so many benefits to help the sick and dying, it can also enhance everybodies well being, there is nothing wrong with marijuana!!!! I am so happy to hear that the argument is being brought to the east side!!!! Awesomme!!

Save the Planet

Hemp can save the planet. Through, fuel, fibers, food and medicine. The war on drugs (marijuna) has caused more lives then saved. Just like the one officer dtated below. He has never gone to an accident scene where marijuana was a cause or a fight where the suspect was stoned. doesn't hapen. But there are so many in jail or probtion for marijuana. I don't get it. Legalize it and save the planet.

For decades this argument

For decades this argument has gone on and on with no end. If possession of heroin and killing someone by a vehicle gets you 5 months in the can......what in the world is all the hype about pot?????!

SMOKED MARIJUANA IS NOT MEDICINE

There is no consensus of medical evidence that smoking marijuana helps patients. Congress enacted laws against marijuana in 1970 based in part on its conclusion that marijuana has no scientifically proven medical value. The Food and Drug Administration is the federal agency responsible for approving drugs as safe and effective medicine based on valid scientific data. FDA has not approved smoked marijuana for any condition or disease. The FDA noted that "there is currently sound evidence that smoked marijuana is harmful," and "that no sound scientific studies supported medical use of marijuana for treatment in the United States, and no animal or human data supported the safety or efficacy of marijuana for general medical use."

In 2001, the Supreme Court affirmed Congress’s 1970 judgment about marijuana in United States v. Oakland Cannabis Buyers’ Cooperative et al., 532 U.S. 438 (2001), which held that, given the absence of medical usefulness, medical necessity is not a defense to marijuana prosecution. Furthermore, in Gonzales v. Raich, 125 S.Ct. 2195 (2005), the Supreme Court reaffirmed that the authority of Congress to regulate the use of potentially harmful substances through the federal Controlled Substances Act includes the authority to regulate marijuana of a purely intrastate character, regardless of a state law purporting to authorize "medical" use of marijuana.

The federal government is not alone in viewing smoked marijuana as having no documented medical value. Voices in the medical community likewise do not accept smoked marijuana as medicine:

• The American Medical Association has rejected pleas to endorse marijuana as medicine, and instead has urged that marijuana remain a prohibited, Schedule I controlled substance, at least until more research is done.
• The American Cancer Society "does not advocate inhaling smoke, nor the legalization of marijuana," although the organization does support carefully controlled clinical studies for alternative delivery methods, specifically a THC skin patch.
• The American Academy of Pediatrics believes that "any change in the legal status of marijuana, even if limited to adults, could affect the prevalence of use among adolescents." While it supports scientific research on the possible medical use of cannabinoids as opposed to smoked marijuana, it opposes the legalization of marijuana.
• The National Multiple Sclerosis Society states that studies done to date "have not provided convincing evidence that marijuana benefits people with MS," and thus marijuana is not a recommended treatment. Furthermore, the NMSS warns that the "long-term use of marijuana may be associated with significant serious side effects."
• The British Medical Association (BMA) voiced extreme concern that down-grading the criminal status of marijuana would "mislead" the public into believing that the drug is safe. The BMA maintains that marijuana "has been linked to greater risk of heart disease, lung cancer, bronchitis and emphysema."7 The 2004 Deputy Chairman of the BMA’s Board of Science said that " the public must be made aware of the harmful effects we know result from smoking this drug."
• The American Academy of Pediatrics asserted that with regard to marijuana use, "from a public health perspective, even a small increase in use, whether attributable to increased availability or decreased perception of risk, would have significant ramifications."

In 1999, The Institute of Medicine released a landmark study reviewing the supposed medical properties of marijuana. The study is frequently cited by "medical" marijuana advocates, but in fact severely undermines their arguments.

• After release of the IOM study, the principal investigators cautioned that the active compounds in marijuana may have medicinal potential and therefore should be researched further. However, the study concluded that "there is little future in smoked marijuana as a medically approved medication."
• For some ailments, the IOM found "...potential therapeutic value of cannabinoid drugs, primarily THC, for pain relief, control of nausea and vomiting, and appetite stimulation." However, it pointed out that " the effects of cannabinoids on the symptoms studied are generally modest, and in most cases there are more effective medications than smoked marijuana."
• The study concluded that, at best, there is only anecdotal information on the medical benefits of smoked marijuana for some ailments, such as muscle spasticity. For other ailments, such as epilepsy and glaucoma, the study found no evidence of medical value and did not endorse further research.
• The IOM study explained that "smoked marijuana . . . is a crude THC delivery system that also delivers harmful substances." In addition, "plants contain a variable mixture of biologically active compounds and cannot be expected to provide a precisely defined drug effect." Therefore, the study concluded that "there is little future in smoked marijuana as a medically approved medication."
• The principal investigators explicitly stated that using smoked marijuana in clinical trials "should not be designed to develop it as a licensed drug, but should be a stepping stone to the development of new, safe delivery systems of cannabinoids."

Thus, even scientists and researchers who believe that certain active ingredients in marijuana may have potential medicinal value openly discount the notion that smoked marijuana is or can become "medicine."

The federal government has approved research into whether THC has any medicinal use. As of May 8, 2006, the federal government had registered every one of the 163 researchers who requested to use marijuana in studies and who met Department of Health and Human Services standards. One of those researchers, The Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research (CMCR), conducts studies "to ascertain the general medical safety and efficacy of cannabis and cannabis products and examine alternative forms of cannabis administration." The CMCR currently has 11 on-going studies involving marijuana and the efficacy of cannabis and cannabis compounds as they relate to medical conditions such as HIV, cancer pain, MS, and nausea.

At present, however, the clear weight of the evidence is that smoked marijuana is harmful. No matter what medical condition has been studied, other drugs already approved by the FDA, such as Marinol – a pill form of synthetic THC – have been proven to be safer and more effective than smoked marijuana

weed is not harmful

0 deaths from marijuana 400,000 from smoking deaths a year whats more dangerous and its a fact that weed is not harmful where did you hear that weed is dangerous

Stop the Madness

How long are we going to allow the government to spend 100's of millions of our tax dollars to keep marijuana smokers behind bars like dangerous criminals? Jail is for people who do harm to others. This is a freedom of choice issue, not a criminal issue. What will be next? Jail time for those who refuse to wear seat belts? When will this country wake up and realize that our personal choices are being made for us, like children, and disobedience can mean the end of your life as you know it.

Well there are these things

Well there are these things called vaporizers that do not cause emissions of CO2. Nor does it release tar or anything other than THC. And I seen a very good friend of mine dieing from his second fight with prostate cancer and all of the anti nausea drugs they gave him did not work. He was an old timer and believed that the govt knew best and was very reluctant to use marijuana. But he finally gave into friends and family that said just try it. Well he did and he actually started gaining weight!! He started eating again. And even curbed the pain. The cancer had moved into his bones and he did eventually loose his fight. And by that I do mean fight!! This man was a fighter though and through. He was a marine in the Chosen reservoir. THE CHOSEN FEW!! Look it up!! Among his last words to me was this. He said to stand up for medicinal marijuana. ("To tell people it will help them when nothing else will. Tell them that the govt will lie. That they can make more money through war, rather than legalisation. And that our govt really doesn't give a rats ass about us!!!") His last words!! Oh yeah he also had a purple heart and two life saving medals!! So you can copy and paste all the bureaucratic hypocritical propaganda you want to put up. But I know the real truth that I seen with my own two eyes. Not read on some page in a book!!!

How can a patient with

How can a patient with nausea keep down a pill? Sure, smoke is full of carbon monoxide, so make an inhaler that sprays a controlled burst of the medicine and THAT would be safer than any pill or smoke. The fact of the matter is, it's more dangerous to take most of the pills on the pharmaceutical market than smoke a joint. And partaking in marijuana out of a vaporizer is 100% harmless.

You sir have never seen a dying relative

If you dont think there are benefits to a cancer patient using this drug to help then you have never seen your dying mother suffer in pain in front of your eyes. It helped my mother and I have seen many chemo patients who cant go through it without it. Its funny how until it happens to you, you feel it doesnt concern you or you can make judgement.

Other means of administration

Inhaling any type of smoke has negative health effects. In other states that passed laws protecting medical users of cannabis, doctors employ patients to use other means of administation of the drug, either by ingestion or the use of a device that vaporizes the herb (releasing only the active cannabinoids, namely THC, as a harmless water vapor).

Think for your self.

Fact is you support our FDA and pharmaceutical industry, so you point of view is a little bias. Every one on your bullet points can be torn a part with the so called evidence. First it should NOT be regulated as a medicine but rather tobacco or alcohol. Now is someone who is sick says there symptoms are better for what ever disease ummm like MS or some other "noncurable" but pharmaceutical managed disease. Which I personally know three and even Montel Williams say it helps with his MS. WHO are you to tell them otherwise. Guess who the major supporters of the MS society is, it is not people with MS, how about the pharmaceutical industry. Every one of your points is linked to the pharmaceutical industry, meaning profits lost if legalized. How about the cancer treatment with canabanoids? You forgot to list the new research from the Journals of Thoracic Surgey which they found LESS lung cancer in pot smokers then even the normal population. Now if we can patent a alkaloid extract and sell it to those in need for "medicinal use" then that is okay, Marinol. If smoking is your problem, then guess what the plant itself can be cooked or vaporized, so the smoking argument, just went up in smoke. If people decide to keep smoking even when there are big labels on your package of marijuana that says SMOKING WILL KILL YOU, then that is their choice! Please put down your glass of wine, and lets really look at this "drug" that we have to stop putting people in jail with, thanks for trying to understand.

AS A STUDENT and the YOUNGER GENERATION

Im posting this as a student PILLS are easier to get than marijuana. you can call any of your friends and they can just rumble through mom or grandmas medicine cabinet and BAMMMM we can be messed up for the next week straight. Smoking a joint or a cigar rolled blunt- we just get a little hungry!!! LEGALIZE IT so my friends will stop overdosing on medications RIP Reid Perry RIP Michael Underwood RIP Josh Irelan RIP Jeremy Beardsley for my guys that coulda smoked and got a little high if marijuana were legal

This is should be framed and

This is should be framed and put all over the world I'm right there brother!

You are right..and being

You are right..and being under the influence of alcohol is more dangerous than being high. There are more people killed by drunk drivers than by driver's who've smoked a little pot.

yes

If the state is going to tax income from sales on the Internet (just got an e-mail this morning from Amazon telling me that I won't be eligible to get commissions on sales from them and I'll be out of an income stream if the current NC budget bill passes), and they're going to slap a yearly tax/registration fee on all minibikes and ATVs then they also need to look at the additional tax revenue from medical marijuana. The savings from not having to arrest, prosecute, and jail people for such a minor offense would be huge.

I'm a cop and I support the

I'm a cop and I support the legalization ad taxation of marijuana. I do not, nor have I ever smoked it, but in my years of law enforcement, I have been to many overdose calls, and not one of them had overdosed on marijuana. I have had to fight many drunks, but I have never had to fight a pothead. I've been to many DWI wrecks, but none of them were due to marijuana use. I would rather have people smoke pot and get high than drink alcohol and get drunk. - Not addictive - Can't overdose on it - Alcohol, which is far worse, is legal and taxed.

If you legalize pot, then

If you legalize pot, then everyone with a little ache or pain will be trying to get a prescription so they can get stoned. Pot is addictive. I know a woman who keeps joints rolled and in a cigarette case on her coffee table and stays stoned all of the time. Another woman I used to work with couldn't get to work in the morning without a joint. The difference between meeting a drunk or a stoner coming the wrong way on the highway is that the stoner will laugh at you and eat a bag of chips while you lay bleeding, waiting on the ambulance.

Ignorance is a funny thing

Marijuana is not physically addictive. It, just like anything in the world, can be mentally addictive, but that's just up to the person using it. I'm more addicted to sports, hip-hop and playing basketball than I am marijuana. I've been smoking since I was 16 and have chosen to quit for 3+ month multiple times. The reason I went back to smoking it was bcuz I like the taste, I like the feeling, and it can be a social thing depending on your friends. Your comment about a pothead laying bleeding shows me that you have never been around a normal person who smokes weed. Cigarettes are worse than smoking weed, why are they legal? Alcohol is worse than smoking weed, why is that legal? Stop being ignorant to the actual issue at hand. Like many people have said, its a plant that God chose to put on this earth for a reason. Do you think that reason was so that the government would throw good people in jail over selling or possessing weed? Hell no. In the great words of Pimp C(RIP), SMOKE SOMETHIN BITCH!!!!

do you think before you

do you think before you talk....

There is a big difference between addiction & dependence

Humans are creatures of habit, having a daily routine makes people feel safe and in control of their lives. So the woman who smokes everyday before work is simply stuck in a bad routine (going to work high is bad kids, don't do it). Now let me ask you, while you smugly sip on your $5 cup of Starbucks coffee which by the way contains one of the most addictive substances in the world, caffine, how many reported traffic fatalities in the US included a driver who was only high on marijuana? If you said zero, then you were right. Now lets take that interesting statistic and compare it to drunk driving fatalities. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration there have been well over half a million drunk driving fatalities in America since 1982. Now lets think about alcohol prohibition, it lasted roughly 14 years during which the consumption rate of alcohol skyrocketed to record numbers and spawned The Mob in America. The War on Drugs has lasted some 30 years and has resulted in loss of trillions of potential tax dollars, created multi-national drug cartels which use excessive violence and force to move their products which causes a lot of collateral damage in the form of dead people, and stuffed our prisons to the breaking point with mostly non-violent drug users. So before you go making false assumptions about something, do your homework first. By the way, I am a 20 year old psychology major who has recently began using marijuana to relieve the stresses of college and have experienced fantastic results. I too fell victim to gov propaganda in the form of the DARE program, it was only after I researched marijuana myself that I discovered the truth and I encourage everyone to do the same.

you my friend...are ignorant

you my friend...are ignorant

What a silly comment.... you

What a silly comment.... you sound like a liberal.

Please cite your studies showing addictiveness of marijuana

Otherwise, you are just spouting your opinion - and one not at all based on fact! Of course, the rampant abuse/overuse of opiates is perfectly OK with you?

How about the ones who really suffer???

You people make me sick! Conservative or Liberal, you are all mean! There are a small group of us with cancer, nervous system disorders, intestinal diseases, etc. that are in constant severe pain. These diseases have NO cure. We suffer in pain 24/7 for months at a time. Our doctors will not prescribe pains meds because they are addicting and have negative side affects. I was diagnosed with an incurable chronic disease 5 years ago. It wasn't until I was throwing up from the pain that I even considered pot. Let me explain what the pain does. When it comes, it lasts for about a minute at a time. I completely go blank. I try and think about anything I can to get my mind off the pain. It feels like it lasts forever. After it subsides, I get a nasty taste in my mouth. My mouth begins to water excessively, and then I get a nasty taste. After this I feel whatever is in my stomach start to come up. I puke. Then I puke again and again and again. This repeats every couple days...The typical pain I would gauge as a 5 to 7 that lasts ALL DAY AND NIGHT! Throughout the day I get the pleasure of experiencing pain I would say is between a 2 and 4. I have been like this since February. Luckily the pain and my disease is starting to subside into remission. I went through this last year from October through the middle of December. I am anemic and dehydrated because of my disease. It is VERY hard to drink the 100+ ounces of water a day I should to stay hydrated. Most the time I use the bathroom, the toilet is filled with blood. I have no energy and can not eat solid food at the moment. I life off those boost and ensure drinks. I weigh 140 lbs. I am 5'9", 32 and am male. I use to weigh 200lbs, which was my average since high school. I lost all that weight in 2 years...without exercising. I actually do the opposite of exercise. When I come home from work, I rest, watch TV, play video games. I sleep at least 10 hours a night because I can not get the right nutrients from food....because I can't eat! So, recap, I cant eat, anemic, dehydrated, no energy, constant pain. Amazing enough, I can eat when I get stoned. My pain subsides and I feel human again. If it wasnt for smoking pot, I would probably weigh less and there would have probably been a bullet in my head months ago because of NOT BEING HUMAN! I don't care if some crack head makes his doctor believe he is in pain to get pot. I care if I can get it. I care that I can be out of pain. I care if others who go through what I go through can get the same pain relief that I can through pot. Pot IS NOT addictive. If you want to say a crack head is addicted to pot, go ahead. IM NOT A CRACK HEAD! I am in pain, WE are in pain. You people are so stupid to deny people who suffer in pain and misery a relief that WILL NOT AFFECT YOUR pathetic, indifferent, ignorant lives. The drugs i am on, which are not working that well, and WILL NOT cure my disease, will cause lymphoma. You think I care if pot turns out to screw up my DNA? You probably drink bottled water because you feel your local water is bad for you. It might be something to learn that your local tap water has higher regulations that bottled water does. I wonder what is in that bottled water that can cause DNA damage? It is heinous to allow something so innocent like pot to NOT help people with their maladies. We suffer daily and you people do your best to keep something away from us that may not fix our problem, but sure will help make us feel a little better. We don't smoke pot when we drive, work, use machines or do anything else that could cause harm to others. You are being irresponsible to your fellow humans from keeping this plant from us.

Are you kidding??? If the

Are you kidding??? If the same regulations are in place that are for other Pain Killers then Medical Marijuana can be contolled the same as any other prescription. It should be a decision between a patient and a Doctor, the Government should not Disallow it because there are man made products out there. The chance of addiction and Overdose from pain killers is a lot higher than for Marijuana. You work with a woman that can't get to work without a Joint. I can't get to work without my Perscribed Pain killers, how is that different? At least she is making it to work! Now the difference between a stoner and a drunk is the Stoner still has thier inhibitions where a Drunk feels invinsible... As a recovering Drunk I know this! I have been completely off my pain killers for 2 months now just from one half a Marijuana brownie in the morning and 2 hits from a joint at night. A lot better than 10mg of Vicodin 4 times a day, right?

marijuina

NO,we don't need another way to get high.Their is medicine on the market to help those in need. But North Carolina with these Democrates will legalize anything for TAX DOLLARS, SO THEY CAN SPEND ON THEIR PET PROJECTS.It isn't going to help us in any way you look at it.Wake up America, we are about to loose it!! BL

dude u dunnin lost ur bricks

Who wants to take meds with side effects like puking, loose stool, headache, swelling, etc. I choose something put here by our LORD not made by some scientist that doesnt haVE A CLUE WHAT HE IS DOING I HAVE A BACHELORS IN SCIENCE SO I NO ITS A HIT AND MISS ON MAN MADE MEDS