Navigating Medical Marijuana in the Mainstream: Advocates Return to DC This …

April 2nd, 2014 by admin Leave a reply »

National_Medical_Unity_Cannabis_2014_Conference_Graphic.jpgPlotting a course forward for state and federal policy on medical cannabis is the agenda for patients, parents, medical professionals and other stakeholders gathering in Washington, D.C., this weekend at Americans for Safe Access’ second annual National Unity Conference. Legal access to medical cannabis has been supported by the American public for decades, and it is the law in 20 states and the District of Columbia, but this issue can be complex, and successfully navigating it requires a clear understanding of where we’ve been, what we know, and where we want to go.  

The facts about medical cannabis are frequently counterintuitive. On the medical side, cannabis stimulates appetite (so much that everyone knows the slang name for the effect), but those who use it are on average thinner and have less of a chance of getting diabetes… because it helps regulate insulin. The smoke contains tars similar to tobacco, but there is no link to lung cancer among even the heaviest users… because it has a protective effect.  

For opponents of medical cannabis, the policy side has proven counter to their intuition as well. Many opponents said with confidence that allowing medical use would send a message to kids that marijuana is safe and increase teen use. But studies of medical cannabis states shows the opposite: States with medical cannabis laws  have seen teen  marijuana use drop

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