July 23rd, 2009 By: Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director
The federal government is not going to pull back on its efforts to curtail marijuana farming operations, Gil Kerlikowske, director of the White House’s Office of National Drug Control Policy, said Wednesday in Fresno.
… “Legalization is not in the president’s vocabulary, and it’s not in mine,” he said. … “Marijuana is dangerous and has no medicinal benefit.”
Most folks visiting this blog ought to recognize Kerlikowske’s first bit of hyperbole; after all, this isn’t the first time the Czar has admitted to possessing a severely limited vocabulary. It’s Kerlikowske’s second allegation — an outright lie — that truly has people flabbergasted. And with good reason.
Hundreds of scientific studies in peer-reviewed journals now document the therapeutic utility of cannabis. That’s why thirteen states, encompassing more than 25 percent of the US population, have legalized the physician-supervised use of pot. To add insult to injury, the Drug Czar was visiting a medical marijuana state (California) when he made his asinine remark.
Then again, the Kerlikowske is stunted by his limited vocabulary. So perhaps he is unable to read the findings of the hundreds of studies presently available in the scientific literature. But is that any excuse to deny what is taking place in front of his eyes?
For instance, a new study published in the Journal of Opioid Management just days prior to Kerlikowske’s foot-in-mouth speech affirms:
“Clearly, there is a growing acceptability of the therapeutic practice of medicinal cannabis use amongst organized medicine groups. … Estimates indicate that in 2008, approximately 7,000 American physicians have made such authorizations for a total of approximately 400,000 patients.”
So which is it Gil? Are more than 7,000 US physicians really all just snake-oil salesmen? Are 400,000 US patients actually just suffering from one massive placebo effect? Or are you sir, just like your predecessor, simply full of sh*t?