Roger Anderson's recent op-ed amounted to nothing more than an
uneducated rant from someone who is unwilling to accept reality about
medical marijuana ("Pot law: a scam," Sept. 3).
My father has cancer and is currently undergoing chemotherapy.
Fortunately, his physician recommended the use of legal medical
marijuana because it is the only thing that works to reduce nausea and
stimulate his appetite. My dad's story is close to my heart but not at
Many oncologists recommend medical marijuana.
Fortunately for my father and so many others, the medical community is
smart enough to look past the lies of the movie "Reefer Madness," lies
also propagated by people like Anderson.
As a supporter of marijuana use, I would like to provide some feedback
("Pot law: a scam," Sept. 3).
I do not believe marijuana does more harm to the body than good, and I
believe there is scientific, if not empirical, evidence to prove this.
I also do not believe that it does more harm than good to communities.
A community's conduct is based on many factors.
Prop. 215 helped to provide for the ill and created regulations at the
same time. This op-ed was over the top. I believe marijuana is an
escape for some and a scapegoat for others.
Carlos Naranjo Jr.
I suffer from chronic lower back pain and am a medical cannabis
patient ("Pot law: a scam," Sept. 3). And I don't like the idea that
San Bernardino County wants to fight to overturn California's Medical
Marijuana Program Act.
For six years, I was taking a powerful painkiller. It almost killed me
- -- thank you, Food and Drug Administration.
Then I tried cannabis, and at least I could think and be creative and
not act like a drunk, or so says my wife, who is a registered nurse.
So please, foes of legal, medicinal marijuana, go shut down drugstores
that peddle drugs to little old ladies in pain. Oh, and don't forget
to shut down your liquor stores, too.
Lawrence Gallegos Sr.
Abuse? Hardly; ID Cards Safeguard the Sick, Work As Intended
The Inland Valley Drug Free Community Coalition's representative,
Roger Anderson, grossly distorts the truth about the state's
compassionate medical-marijuana law and those who support it ("Pot
law: a scam," Sept. 3).
Anderson's organization claims to be concerned that California's
medical-marijuana law is prone to abuse, but it applauds San
Bernardino and San Diego counties for suing to overturn a portion of
the law that is designed to limit any abuse.
[continues 559 words]
California needs a thoughtful, thorough revision of its criminal
justice system. Instead, voters in November will face Prop. 5, which
would make already-muddled drug laws even more incoherent. Voters
should reject that course.
Prop. 5, The Nonviolent Offender Rehabilitation Act, would expand
programs to divert drug offenders to treatment instead of prison or
jail. But the measure reaches far beyond drug programs, and voters
should be skeptical about its ambitions.
Does the state really need a new bureaucracy to oversee parole and
rehabilitation efforts? Why should the Board of Parole Hearings have
29 members instead of 17? And why is a provision to ease penalties
for marijuana possession buried in this initiative?
[continues 422 words]
San Bernardino and San Diego counties have joined to fight back
against the problems brought to our state by the pro-legalization pot
initiative called Prop. 215 ("Counties to challenge state's medical
pot law," Aug. 27).
Despite a very small pro-legalization group that protested against
San Bernardino County in mid-August in a poor attempt to demand pot
cards, members of the San Bernardino County Board of supervisors saw
through their smoke and will now ask the state Supreme Court to
intervene in the subsequent Medical Marijuana Program Act.
[continues 644 words]
San Bernardino and San Diego counties will once again team up in
court in a renewed attempt to overturn California's Medical Marijuana
Program Act, county authorities said Tuesday.
The San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors decided during the
closed session of its weekly meeting to once again take up the case,
this time before the state supreme court, according to Jodi Miller, a
spokeswoman with the San Bernardino County Sheriff's department.
The board took the step "at the urging of the Sheriff in his capacity
as the county's chief law enforcement and public safety official,"
according to county spokesman David Wert.
[continues 225 words]
San Bernardino and San Diego counties' bid to overturn California's
Medical Marijuana Program Act by claiming federal statutes pre-empt
the 2003 state law was denied Thursday by an appellate court.
In a 3-0 opinion, judges from the state's 4th District Court of
Appeal in San Diego also rejected San Bernardino County's claim that
the medical marijuana identification card provisions of the law
violate the California Constitution.
The appellate judges said the challenged provisions of the state
Medical Marijuana Program Act "do not positively conflict with" the
federal Controlled Substances Act, which classifies marijuana as a
dangerous drug with no medical use.
[continues 414 words]
Deputies seized more than 60,000 marijuana plants over the past week
from the Santa Ana River bed west of Norco, potentially removing
millions of dollars from the pockets of drug dealers, sheriff's officials said.
The operation ended Thursday morning when deputies assigned to the
Riverside County Sheriff's Department Special Enforcement Bureau
hiked in and pulled up the last 18,673 plants at what was called a "grow site."
The federal Drug Enforcement Administration has estimated the value
of such marijuana plants at $3,000 to $5,000 each, said sheriff's
Sgt. Glenn Williams, head of the marijuana eradication program.
[continues 164 words]
SAN DIEGO - San Bernardino and San Diego counties argued in court
Tuesday that California's medical marijuana plan violates federal law
and the state constitution, while opposing attorneys argued the state
is within its rights to regulate the substance.
The exchanges came in a crowded courtroom before a three-judge panel
of the state 4th District Court of Appeal in San Diego.
The jurists took the matter under submission and have 90 days to make
their ruling. Their decision can be appealed to the state Supreme Court.
[continues 777 words]
The recent op-ed on medical marijuana says science, not politics,
should drive California's drug policy ("Pot propaganda," June 4).
Though the piece suggests otherwise, science reveals that marijuana is
superb for battling nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, insomnia,
muscle spasms and pain. For some people, it can mean the difference
between life and death.
An Institute of Medicine report, the same one mentioned in the op-ed,
actually confirms that marijuana has these medical uses.
The writer suggests that Marinol, a synthetic pill that contains only
one of the many active ingredients in the plant, could suffice for
patients. But research reveals that the pill is impossible to swallow
during bouts of nausea and vomiting, its effects are slow and
unpredictable, and for some patients, it simply doesn't work.
Indeed, science should drive drug policy. Medical marijuana should be
available as needed to end human anguish whenever possible. Standing
idly by while the sickest of the sick suffer is truly inhumane.
State University of New York at Albany
Science, Not Politics, Should Drive California's Drug Policy
With all of the talk about medical marijuana dispensaries in
California, it is hard to separate truth and science from ideology and
In recent years, marijuana activists in the state have donned white
coats and exclaimed a newfound concern for the seriously ill, while
legislators and judges have been left to wrestle with the consequences
of a poorly written referendum, Prop. 215. Known as the Compassionate
Use Act of 1996, it allowed patients with a valid doctor's
recommendation to possess and cultivate marijuana for personal medical
[continues 564 words]
Salvia divinorum is getting a lot of attention.
One researcher found 5 percent of college students use the legal
hallucinogenic herb and began studying hundreds of videos on YouTube
showing users taking it.
Scientists tout it as a possible remedy for depression and bipolar
disorder and one is planning the first study of its effects on humans.
Lawmakers, including Assemblyman Anthony Adams, R-Hesperia, are
introducing bills to make its use illegal for some.
The Adams bill would bar sales of salvia divinorum, commonly known as
salvia, to minors. He introduced the bill in January at the urging of
the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department. It cleared the
Assembly by a 76-0 vote in January. The state Senate is expected to
consider it in late April.
[continues 1239 words]
The Palm Springs city attorney said he will soon propose that the
city allow medical marijuana cooperatives.
City Attorney Douglas Holland said he has studied the issue for more
than 18 months and plans to bring his proposal to the City Council in
coming weeks. He said cooperatives would satisfy the need of the
people and the laws of the state.
"Those collectives would have to be very narrowly tailored and
organized," Holland said.
If the city council approves the cooperatives, Palm Springs will
become one of the only cities in Riverside County to pass an
ordinance allowing medical marijuana cooperatives.
[continues 312 words]
A federal judge ruled Monday that Cathedral City does not have
jurisdiction to ask a federal court to stop a business from selling
medical marijuana because it is not a federal agency.
The city will now ask the U.S. attorney's office to ask U.S. District
Court Judge Stephen G. Larson for a permanent injunction against
Essential Herbs and Oils, Deputy City Manager Julie Baumer said.
Baumer did not know when a meeting between officials of the city and
the U.S. attorney's office would take place.
[continues 346 words]
Medical marijuana dispensaries could be permanently banned in Moreno
The City Council is expected to consider using an urgency declaration
to prohibit opening the businesses within Moreno Valley. City
Attorney Bob Herrick said he is recommending the ban primarily
because of the problems associated with such dispensaries.
A California Police Chiefs Association report found that robberies,
assaults and burglaries involving marijuana and large amounts of cash
do occur at such dispensaries. The exact frequency is difficult to
determine because of underreporting and the lack of a category for
crimes related to the dispensaries.
[continues 319 words]
One week after the city of Riverside's first medical marijuana clinic
opened its doors, staff and patients alike say business is coming along well.
Lanny Swerdlow, a registered nurse and longtime cannabis advocate who
runs it, said the clinic's doctor issued about a dozen
recommendations for the drug on the opening day, Jan. 17. The clinic
does not dispense marijuana.
"People have to learn about us," said Swerdlow, who operates the
clinic under the auspices of The Hemp and Cannabis Foundation. The
nonprofit group operates medical marijuana clinics in four other states.
[continues 292 words]
An 80-year-old great-grandmother from Temecula could be the first
person to get a legal recommendation in the city of Riverside to use
marijuana for medicinal reasons.
Iris Berger said she plans to use the drug to ease the pain of
arthritis in her hands and back. She is scheduled to be the first
patient at a medical marijuana clinic opening Thursday at 647 N. Main
St., in northern Riverside.
"It seems to help," said Berger, whose son and daughter-in-law are
longtime medical marijuana users and advocates. The couple won a
three-year legal battle in late 2003 after being arrested for growing
marijuana to treat their chronic illnesses.
[continues 398 words]
The Perris City Council took the first step Tuesday night to quash
any medical marijuana dispensaries that might be budding in town.
Four out of five council members voted to pass an urgency ordinance
prohibiting any medical marijuana dispensary from setting up shop in
the next 45 days. Councilman Mark Yarbrough was absent.
City Attorney Eric Dunn said the moratorium would give city staff and
officials the time needed to research state and federal laws before
creating a more permanent municipal code to address the sale of
[continues 226 words]
Riverside residents could soon have a much shorter drive to get a
doctor's recommendation for medical marijuana.
Palm Springs resident and marijuana activist Lanny Swerdlow said he
plans to open a clinic in December in an office building at 647 N.
Main St. in northern Riverside.
"It's kind of a good central location for the entire Inland," said
Swerdlow, a registered nurse who heads the Marijuana Anti-Prohibition
Ingrid Wyatt, a spokeswoman for the Riverside County district
attorney's office, has said in previous interviews that such a clinic
would not be against the law provided no marijuana was dispensed
there. She could not be reached for comment Monday.
[continues 218 words]