Pubdate: Wed, 15 Feb 2012
Source: Anniston Star (AL)
Copyright: 2012 Consolidated Publishing
Author: Evan Haarbauer


Don't "throw the baby out with the bathwater" in regards to medical
marijuana in Alabama. Educated discussions and debates should continue
as we move past the need to call it "pot."

State Rep. K.L. Brown, R-Jacksonville, sponsors HB66, and Rep.
Patricia Todd, D-Birmingham, sponsors HB25. Each bill allows regulated
medicinal marijuana to qualified patients who have a recommendation
from a doctor. Republicans and Democrats can work together to pass
comprehensive legislation.

Medical conditions this pertains to include cancer, HIV/AIDS, cerebral
palsy, Parkinson's disease, post-traumatic stress disorder and others.
Traditional medicines are not always effective for these conditions;
in many cases, not at all. Disabled and terminally ill patients are
prone to insufficient treatment and a diminished quality of life.
Appropriate marijuana use offers treatment with limited side effects.
Marijuana has fewer and less severe side effects than many anti-pain
and anti-anxiety medicines. There have been no fatalities directly
associated with marijuana, and there are methods of intake other than
smoking, including salves and tinctures.

The bills specify cultivation and distribution, laboratory testing and
monitored services to limit abuse. Jobs would be created. Importantly,
there would be legal protections for physicians and patients who
choose legitimate means of health and recovery with marijuana.

Evan Haarbauer

Vestavia Hills
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