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The Ethics of Medical Marijuana

From the current issue of Time Magazine, in reference to who uses “medical” marijuana:
“Colorodo health department records show that only 2% of registered [medical marijuana] patients had cancer; 1% had HIV/AIDS. There were 94% who suffered ‘severe pain’–a catchall condition that can be entirely subjective and difficult for a doctor to measure or verify. Statewide, more than 70% of doctor recommendations were written by fewer than 15 physicians. Three out of four patients are men under 40. This patient profile–young males complaining of chronic pain-has been roughly the same in other medical-marijuana states like Montana and California.” 
I watched my mother-in-law die of cancer, and I would have gladly advocated for the use of medical marijuana to help her pain and nausea. But medicalizing a 25-year old man’s pot-habit not only seems like a farce to me, but also a potential danger–to the 25-year old and to the rest of us. 
So where does that leave me? Perhaps as an advocate for stricter laws surrounding medical marijuana. Certainly in support of actual medicine in-the-works that “has been effective for pain from MS spasms and cancer treatment without causing the marijuana high.” And once again aware that ethics and laws aren’t the same thing.  
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posted November 18, 2010 at 4:57 pm

So you like the idea of cops making medical decisions for you? Or just for other people who don’t “seem” sick enough to have their treatment pass muster with you?

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posted November 18, 2010 at 7:08 pm

Slightly disingenuous, Kenneth, no? I’d like sceptical doctors to make medically necessary diagnoses. Please don’t pretend that even half of the “young males complaining of chronic pain” were being sincere. I’d like to know what the financial gain had been for the 15 physicians doing the prescribing. Kenneth, the best way for medically necessary marijuana to remain legal in the states where it already is will be if it doesn’t remain the joke that it is right now.

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posted November 18, 2010 at 9:41 pm

I live in Colorado, and I can tell you that one does NOT need to be truly sick/ have actual pain to get a prescription for medical marijuana. Even my brother-in-law has one for his “headaches.” Even he will say it is a joke, and he is by no means the minority in terms of the type of person who has a prescription.
My brother-in-law aside, I support stricter laws surrounding medical marijuana. Either it should be legalized for everyone, or it should be a medicine for the truly ill. None of this middle ground. What should be at the forefront of any law concerning medical marijuana is the public interest and safety.

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posted November 21, 2010 at 1:33 pm

“But medicalizing a 25-year old man’s pot-habit not only seems like a farce to me, but also a potential danger–to the 25-year old and to the rest of us.”
I don’t find it ‘ethical’ of YOU to trivialize the issue this way. Marijuana is FAR less harmful than either tobacco OR alcohol. They both create much more REAL (nevermind “potential”) danger to individuals AND society.
I heard a doctor once say he had never treated anyone for the ‘effects of marijuana’. The same simply cannot be said for the other two LEGAL drugs.
Face the facts and this is a no-brainer. Legalize it, tax the bejeezus out of it and help get this country out of its economic mess.

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posted January 13, 2012 at 5:46 pm

I’m sorry, I’ve tried every kind of mental meds out there. Pretty much a gineuea pig. I’ve suffer from severe pms, effecting me harshly mentally, emotionally & physically. I’ve dealt with some very traumatic events in my life…approved for disability in ’09 & diagnose with Fibro after death of husband who usta supply me with marijuana rt on time & could tell it helped. I don’t want to be illegal with anything since I have a six yr old. But something’s gotta give. I’m in KY, & praying that I can raise $ to afford living in CA or CO–somewhere I no I can get medical approval for my issues to incorporate thc for the benefit of my life. Does anybody out there have any suggestions? I’m on high doses of pain meds but it doesn’t get it :-(… Plz! I’ve tried everything !!!

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