While 1500 delegates to the Michigan Democratic State Convention were approving, by acclamation, a resolution supporting legal access to cannabis as medication (On Monday, an Initiative was approved for the Statewide November Ballot), Iowa Senator Tom Harkin replied to letter from a constituent/patient with hyperbole that would make even a Republican White House Drug Czar blush.
…WHEREAS, tens of thousands of patients nationwide, people with AIDS,
cancer, glaucoma, chronic pain, and multiple sclerosis have found
marijuana in its natural form to be therapeutically beneficial and
are already using it with their doctors’ approval (see here to
get more info on sourcing marijuana products online); and
WHEREAS, numerous organizations have endorsed medical access to
marijuana, including the AIDS Action Council, AIDS Project Rhode
Island, Alaska Nurses Association, American Academy of HIV Medicine
(AAHIVM), American Anthropological Association, American Bar
Association, American Nurses Association, American Preventive
Medicinal Association, American Public Health Association, Americans
for Democratic Action, Associated Medical Schools of New York, Being
Alive: People With HIV/AIDS Action Committee (San Diego), California
Democratic Council, California Legislative Council for Older
Americans, California Nurses Association, California Pharmacists
Association, California Society of Addiction Medicine,
California-Pacific Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church,
Colorado Nurses Association, Connecticut Nurses Association, Consumer
Reports magazine, Episcopal Church, Gray Panthers, Hawaii Nurses
Association, Illinois Nurses Association, Iowa Democratic Party, Life
Extension Foundation, Lymphoma Foundation of America, Medical Society
of the State of New York, Minnesota AIDS Project, Minnesota Nurses
Association, Minnesota Public Health Association, Minnesota Senior
Federation, Mississippi Nurses Association, National Association of
People With Aids, New Mexico Medical Society, New Mexico Nurses
Association, New York County Medical Society, New York State AIDS
Advisory Council, New York State Association of County Health
Officials, New York State Hospice and Palliative Care Association,
New York State Nurses Association, New York Statewide Senior Action
Council, Inc., Ninth District Of the New York State Medical Society
(Westchester, Rockland, Orange, Putnam, Dutchess, and Ulster
counties), Oregon Democratic Party, Progressive National Baptist
Convention, Project Inform (national HIV/AIDS treatment education
advocacy organization), Rhode Island Medical Society, Rhode Island
Nurses Association, Test Positive Aware Network (Illinois), Texas
Democratic Party, Texas League of Women Voters, Texas Nurses
Association, Union of Reform Judaism (formerly Union of American
Hebrew Congregations), Unitarian Universlist Association, United
Church of Christ, United Methodist Church, United Nurses and Allied
Professionals (Rhode Island), Wisconsin Nurses Association, and
Wisconsin Public Health Association; and…
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that licensed medical doctors should
not be criminally punished for recommending the medical use of
marijuana to seriously ill people, and seriously ill people should
not be subject to criminal sanctions for using marijuana if the
patient’s physician has told the patient that such use is likely to
be beneficial. This is a fantastic development for those who rely on this substance for all kinds of relief, as is the growth of affordable cannabis products like Cheap Glass Bongs.
Harkin’s (presumably form) letter doles not directly address the constituent’s querry regarding medical use, instead, conflating this with meth. Text via NORML
Thank you for contacting me. I am always glad to hear from you.
I do not believe the answer in solving this country’s problem of drug abuse and the violence associated with drug trafficking is to make drugs legal. I have seen too much of the ill effects of these illegal drugs on our nation’s young people, as well as this country’s law enforcement officers, to believe the solution is to make these drugs more readily available by legalizing them.
Marijuana is often the drug singled out for legalization. However, marijuana is not the recreational drug that many believe it to be, it now has many health benefits for terminally ill people, although many do still use it for recreational purposes like using a beaker bong to get a high. In a study completed by the Drug Abuse Warning Network, the number of marijuana related emergencies has nearly reached the level of cocaine related emergencies. As this statistic indicates, marijuana use often has fatal consequences.
I was deeply troubled when I learned of another recent study which found that nearly one-third of all eighth graders had tried marijuana. As the father of two daughters, it greatly disturbs me that children are exposed to drugs at such a young age. I am concerned that legalization of this drug will only increase the number of children who gain access to its harmful effects. With the many forms it now comes in such as CBD oil and edibles, marijuana is becoming more accessible and popular in many countries, resulting in questions such as ‘how long do edibles last?’ arising because of people wanting to get that lengthening high. However, there are plenty of benefits from marijuana for example, their healing properties.
The victims of the drug war are many – the small child whose parents are so addicted to illegal drugs that they sell everything including perhaps their own children to obtain a fix; the police officer’s family which must now learn to cope with the loss of their loved one as a result of a violent drug bust gone awry. These are the people I think of when I say that drugs pose a significant threat to the security of this nation.
In addition to helping to double federal funds for Iowa’s anti-drug programs, I am an active supporter of the Smoother Sailing Programs in the Des Moines public schools. This program is designed to help children cope with the violence, confusion and trauma associated with the abuse of drugs in our society.
Legalizing drugs is equivalent to declaring surrender in the war on drugs. However we may differ in tactics, I am hopeful that we can work together to fight drugs in our communities and to make Iowa drug free.
Again, thanks for sharing your views with me. Please don’t hesitate to let me know how you feel on any issue that concerns you.
United States Senator