Modern medicine has evolved greatly over the years in treating cancer
and other illnesses. We have radiation and chemotherapy to reduce
tumour growths, we have opioids to decrease pain and there are a
number of over the counter drugs we can buy when we're feeling under
But what about using marijuana in treatments for life threatening
diseases and other life-altering ailments?
It's not talked about very openly, in fact many who use cannabis oil
tend to keep it under wraps, said Don Keith, a medical marijuana
license holder in Petrolia. That's why he has planned a discussion
group at the Petrolia library on Friday, Oct. 28, to offer support and
a safe place to talk about using medical marijuana without ridicule or
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For Max*, the downward spiral of addiction started off slowly and at
supposedly the most innocent of times, when he was in elementary school.
He started off experimenting with tobacco and marijuana around the
tender age of 12.
"By the time he was involved in high school, he was in full gear,"
recalled his father, Sean, who asked that his last name not be used
to protect the identity of his son.
Max - an intelligent kid who grew up on the north side of Sarnia -
then progressed to abusing prescription drugs with his friends.
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Does caffeine lead to cocaine use? Obviously not. But what would
happen if caffeine was outlawed? Naturally, a black market would
emerge. Drug gangs, which are highly skilled at operating outside the
law, and have pre-existing distribution channels, would begin
trafficking illegal caffeine pills.
If people were forced to use black market distribution chains to
obtain a mild stimulant such as caffeine, would they be more likely to
opt for a stronger stimulant such as cocaine? Almost certainly.
Dealing with drug dealers is a binary. Either you do it, or you don't.
And if you do, they will likely try to upsell you. Drug dealers are
like any other sales people, minus the legal sanction ( meaning they
are more likely to rip you off or assault you). They want to obtain
the highest profit margin possible. Cocaine sells at a much higher
margin than caffeine pills would, even if caffeine was outlawed. Even
if most people resisted the dealers' insistence that cocaine would
provide a better experience, some non-drug users would try it out ;
some would even become addicted. Caffeine use would likely decline,
while use of cocaine and other illicit drugs would increase.
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Illegal cropping and the presence of marijuana grow-ops appear to be
rampant across much of Lambton County and the OPP is seeking the help
of farmers in bringing the perpetrators to justice.
Const. Jason Yoama, a department manager at the Petrolia-based Lambton
detachment of the OPP, was one of the speakers at the Lambton Soil and
Crop Improvement Association's annual meeting. He asked everyone in
the room to raise their hand if they had ever discovered a marijuana
grow-op on their farm.
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Pat Davidson says her office has recently been trying to help a
number of residents worried about medical marijuana program changes
The Sarnia-Lambton MP was highlighting some of the federal
government's accomplishments and plans at a Rotary Club of Sarnia
"We have been working with several residents on issues and we'll
continue to do that with the medical marijuana," Davidson said after
"There's a whole litany of concerns and it depends on the individual
what some of the concerns are. Cost is one of them for sure."
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It'll cost more, but medical marijuana users' privacy won't be
jeopardized when new rules governing medical marijuana production
come into effect April 1, Health Canada says.
Petrolia resident Jeff Johnston, 49, recently said he's concerned
about rising costs and the threat of being targeted by police when
he's no longer allowed to grow marijuana after Health Canada's
Marijuana for Medical Purposes Regulations (MMPR) program takes effect.
Currently, people like Johnston can grow medical marijuana for their
own use at home, with a licence from Health Canada.
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Medical pot user growing concerned
Jeff Johnston worries he'll have to go outside the law for his
medicine when new medical marijuana growing rules take effect this
It'll be seven years in October since the 49-year-old Petrolia man
suffered 11 epileptic seizures and doctors discovered a slow-growing
tumour in his brain.
After chemotherapy about five years ago, Johnston received his
licences to possess and grow medical marijuana.
Since then, he's smoked his prescribed 4.5 grams per day and grown 25
plants - enough for a year's supply, he said - in a greenhouse in his
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If you ask local public secondary school teachers what their top
concern is for student wellness, the answer may be different than
what you'd expect to hear.
Substance use has been ranked the top socio-emotional concern for
local students, according to a recent survey of Lambton Kent District
School Board high school teachers.
And this perspective certainly seems to be in line with students.
A sample of high school students also ranked substance use as their
top concern, said Lori Brush, the board's mental health lead.
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During summer, people involved in growing marijuana are in and around
swamps, corn fields, wooded areas, along rivers, and rural rental
properties with large acreage.
Their crops only have to be tended to about once every two weeks and in
late September or early October, the grower returns to harvest the plants,
leaving the roots behind.
Sarnia-Lambton Crime Stoppers says common indicators of outdoor marijuana
grows include abandoned vehicles parked on sideroads or trails, people
walking in remote areas for no apparent reason, bags of fertilizer,
planting trays or chemicals in remote areas, well-trampled trails in
wooded or swamp areas, cleared out areas in swamps, wooded areas or corn
fields, and "No Trespassing" signs.
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