Today, in 18 states and the District of Columbia citizens have access to legal medical marijuana (cannabis). In 1980 Georgia General Assembly unanimously passed a medical marijuana (cannabis) research act, (Controlled Substance Therapeutic Research Act – Code 43-34-120) becoming one of the first states to recognize the medical benefits of marijuana.

With support of Lt. Gov. Zell Miller, House Speaker Tom Murphy, Rep. Virlyn Smith and Governor George Busbee, this landmark legislation opened the doors to therapeutic cannabis. The law relied upon federal cooperation and supply, therefore rendering the law cumbersome and ineffective in accomplishing its goal to further the research into the benefits of medical marijuana. The program was halted a few years after it was enacted.

The legislation stated: “(Studies) indicates that marijuana and certain of its derivatives possess valuable and in some cases, unique therapeutic properties, including the ability to relieve nausea and vomiting which routinely accompany chemotherapy and irradiation used to treat cancer patients.” It also cited the benefit in reducing intraocular pressure in glaucoma patients.

But is cannabis safe to use as a medicine? Yes, in fact it is considered safer than aspirin. In a court decision in 1988 Drug Enforcement Administration’s law judge Francis L. Young concluded after hearing testimony from both sides of the issue that -

“In strict medical terms marijuana is far safer than many foods we commonly consume. For example, eating ten raw potatoes can result in a toxic response. By comparison, it is physically impossible to eat enough marijuana to induce death. Marijuana, in its natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man. By any measure of rational analysis marijuana can be safely used within a supervised routine of medical care."

Georgia lawmakers should revisit the medical marijuana law and allow those who can benefit from it to use it under the care of a doctor without fear of being arrested as a criminal. Polls show nearly 80% of Americans support the legal medicine.

News Hawk- Truth Seeker 420 MAGAZINE ®
Author: James Bell
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Website: Medical Marijuana OK In Georgia? - James Bell's Blog - Gwinnett, GA Patch