Pubdate: 26 Jun 1998
Source: San Mateo County Times

The present status of medical marijuana is disgraceful, but hardly a
stalemate- "shambles" is far more apt. Nearly everywhere in the
state,legitimate patients must either go without a uniquely helpful
medicine or risk the criminal market.

Why blame the "antics of arrogant, confirmed potheads" and not the
intransigence of federal and state law enforcement officers, who from the
outset, have insisted that marijuana couldn't possibly be a legitimate
therapeutic agent?

To claim that "government authorities have almost no choice but to shut
down such organizations because of their behavior" is both illogical and

Whatever the "antics" of the San Francisco Buyers Club, they were not a
reason to penalize legitimate patients. Besides, if you'll check news
sources, you will find that cooperative clubs and patients have been
subjected to felony prosecutions throughout the state, from Mendocino to

Your statement that "there is not one completed scientific study on the
medicinal values of marijuana" is simply untrue.

There is an extensive medical literature attesting to the safety and
efficacy of marijuana in a variety of conditions. True, there are no double
blind controlled studies (extremely difficult to design for a smoked agent
with a characteristic aroma). There are also no recent studies for the
simple reason that for over fifteen years, NIDA has stubbornly refused to
approve release of marijuana for human study.

The government's war on marijuana is as dishonest as it is lacking in
scientific legitimacy. Sincerely,

Dr. Thomas O'Connell, San Mateo 
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Checked-by: Richard Lake