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Neil Deatherage

TEDCRED 50+

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Should Cannabis be legalized as a medicine?

The rich biodiversity of plants in nature has provided humans many medicines to prevent and cure sickness and disease. The use of cannabis as a medicine continues to gain acceptance within the scientific and medical community, with Connecticut early this month joining 16 other states to legalize it for medical use. Case studies continue to support the value of cannabis as a medicine to ameliorate various ailments ranging from glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, AIDS, Parkinson's, chronic pain, and nausea associated with cancer.

Despite scientific evidence supporting medicinal qualities from cannabis, much controversy surrounds outright legalization for medicinal use. While many states currently allow cannabis as an alternative to traditional medicines, the FDA continues to classify cannabis as a schedule I drug subjecting patients to possible fines and/or imprisonment under federal law.

Can cannabis find a place in today's society as an alternative medicine, or are possible unforeseen consequences too great to allow this plant for medicinal use?

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  • May 23 2012: I've repeatedly heard that while being in possession of marijuana is illegal, it is not actually illegal to be high (at least in Oregon). However, I haven't been able to find any legitimate sources to back this up or refute it. Does anyone know the truth of this from more than just hearsay?
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      May 23 2012: It's certainly not illegal to be high. You can't be arrested anywhere for it. How can they prove you are high? And even if they somehow could, you can't be arrested for that. Only for possession of marijuana.
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        May 23 2012: Road side drug testing is done in Australia. They can test for THC amphetamines opiates and ecstacy type pills in your saliva. In Australia it is illegal to be high.
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          May 24 2012: Hmm, didn't know that. Well at least that doesn't apply for the United States. That's as much as I know.

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