California Medical Association wants marijuana legalized

October 15, 2011

California’s largest doctor’ group is calling for the legalization of marijuana despite its belief that there may be only questionable medical value. [LA Times]

Trustees of the California Medical Association., which represents more than 35,000 physicians statewide, adopted the position at their annual meeting in Anaheim on Friday. It is the first major medical association in the nation to urge legalization of the drug.

Dr. Donald Lyman, the Sacramento physician who wrote the group’s new policy, attributed the shift to growing frustration over California’s medical marijuana law, which permits cannabis use with a doctor’s recommendation. That, he said, has created an untenable situation for physicians: deciding whether to give patients a substance that is illegal under federal law.

“It’s an uncomfortable position for doctors,” Lyman said. “It is an open question whether cannabis is useful or not. That question can only be answered once it is legalized and more research is done. Then, and only then, can we know what it is useful for.”

The organization’s announcement provoked some angry response.

“I wonder what they’re smoking,” said John Lovell, spokesman for the California Police Chiefs Association. “Given everything that we know about the physiological impacts of marijuana — how it affects young brains, the number of accidents associated with driving under the influence — it’s just an unbelievably irresponsible position.”

In recent weeks, the Obama administration has begun cracking down on California’s medical marijuana industry, threatening to prosecute landlords who rent buildings to pot dispensaries.



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Who would have thunk it? A bunch of doctors have finally decided to call for some ‘effective harm reduction’. I wonder when they’ll decide it’s time they fully recognized ‘sound medical science’?


Federal researchers implanted several types of cancer, including leukemia and lung cancers, in mice, then treated them with cannabinoids (unique, active components found in marijuana). THC and other cannabinoids shrank tumors and increased the mice’s lifespans. Munson, AE et al. Antineoplastic Activity of Cannabinoids. Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Sept. 1975. p. 597-602.


In a 1994 study the government tried to suppress, federal researchers gave mice and rats massive doses of THC, looking for cancers or other signs of toxicity. The rodents given THC lived longer and had fewer cancers, “in a dose-dependent manner” (i.e. the more THC they got, the fewer tumors). NTP Technical Report On The Toxicology And Carcinogenesis Studies Of 1-Trans- Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol, CAS No. 1972-08-3, In F344/N Rats And B6C3F Mice, Gavage Studies. See also, “Medical Marijuana: Unpublished Federal Study Found THC-Treated Rats Lived Longer, Had Less Cancer,” AIDS Treatment News no. 263, Jan. 17, 1997.


Researchers at the Kaiser-Permanente HMO, funded by NIDA, followed 65,000 patients for nearly a decade, comparing cancer rates among non-smokers, tobacco smokers, and marijuana smokers. Tobacco smokers had massively higher rates of lung cancer and other cancers. Marijuana smokers who didn’t also use tobacco had no increase in risk of tobacco-related cancers or of cancer risk overall. In fact their rates of lung and most other cancers were slightly lower than non-smokers, though the difference did not reach statistical significance. Sidney, S. et al. Marijuana Use and Cancer Incidence (California, United States). Cancer Causes and Control. Vol. 8. Sept. 1997, p. 722-728.


Donald Tashkin, a UCLA researcher whose work is funded by NIDA, did a case-control study comparing 1,200 patients with lung, head and neck cancers to a matched group with no cancer. Even the heaviest marijuana smokers had no increased risk of cancer, and had somewhat lower cancer risk than non-smokers (tobacco smokers had a 20-fold increased Lung Cancer risk). Tashkin D. Marijuana Use and Lung Cancer: Results of a Case-Control Study. American Thoracic Society International Conference. May 23, 2006.


In response to passage of California’s medical marijuana law, the White House had the Institute of Medicine (IOM) review the data on marijuana’s medical benefits and risks. The IOM concluded, “Nausea, appetite loss, pain and anxiety are all afflictions of wasting, and all can be mitigated by marijuana.” The report also added, “we acknowledge that there is no clear alternative for people suffering from chronic conditions that might be relieved by smoking marijuana, such as pain or AIDS wasting.” The government’s refusal to acknowledge this finding caused co-author John A. Benson to tell the New York Times that the government “loves to ignore our report … they would rather it never happened.” Joy, JE, Watson, SJ, and Benson, JA. Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base. National Academy Press. 1999. p. 159. See also, Harris, G. FDA Dismisses Medical Benefit From Marijuana. New York Times. Apr. 21, 2006

California’s largest doctor’ group is calling for the legalization of marijuana despite its belief that there may be only questionable medical value.


Hah? Are you out of your minds? Marijuana probably has more medical benefits than just about any other drug out there.

What you mean to say is that medical marijuana would displace so many patented money making drugs with an all natural extremely inexpensive, safe and gentle drug that it would dramatically disrupt the income flow of many major pharmaceutical companies.

“I wonder what they’re smoking,” said John Lovell, spokesman for the California Police Chiefs Association. “Given everything that we know about the physiological impacts of marijuana — how it affects young brains, the number of accidents associated with driving under the influence — it’s just an unbelievably irresponsible position.” Now, replace the word smoking with the word drinking, replace the word marijuana with alcohol, and you might have an argument for a “drug” being illegal; except that it already is illegal for minor to posses, transport, consume and/or be “under the influence” of alcohol, but does that stop any minors from drinking? No, of course not. And we have already tried to outlaw alcohol; what we got from that action is exactly what is happening with marijuana now, big time crime syndicates operating outside the law, numerous arrests for possession that have finally seen the reduction to a misdemeanor for small quantities, and our jails filled with way too many for the activity of supplying marijuana, and of course, law enforcement confiscating as much as possible for a near “victimless crime”(the use and/or possession; I understand that people can and do get hurt by those running the cartels that offer a large chunk of the availability of the product.) Everything written here about how the government prospers off of the enforcement of marijuana laws is certainly true, and we also cannot compete globally with growing and processing of commercial hemp products as well. It is time for a change, perhaps a change in the classification of marijuana by the fed could be the first step in our true economic recovery that can last and allow all of society to benefit, not just the upper 1%.

Gourmet wine for vips.

“It is an open question whether cannabis is useful or not.”

Dr. Donald Lyman, have you ever heard of Sir William Brooke O’Shaughnessy? Did he and the first eleven editions of the United States Pharmacopoeia not EXIST?

Get a CLUE.

And get over your cognitive dissonance, Mr Lovell. You are just wrong.

soooo, when did ‘doctors’ have all the answers?

It’s fairly obvious — even to the casual observer — that law enforcement types see the results of drug usage up close and personal. Those who ever wondered… ‘medical mj’ was just a smokescreen… for larger legalization issues.

All this has helped bring us where we are today…

Yes the cops do see a lot of psychological damage done to marijuana users, not to mention the children of users or even Grandma and Grandpa and the family pets. They see it when they break into homes dressed up like Darth Veda in the early morning while pointing big guns and yelling at everybody. They see it when they won’t allow upset citizens to use the bathroom or allow the wife to put her clothes on or when they send the kids to CPS because Daddy had his legal Medical Marijuana locked up in a safe next to his legal hand gun. Don’t tell me NO, because this is exactly what occurred last year right here in SLO county with the MM mobile dispensaries and the NTF.

YEAH, The cop’s see plenty of psychological damage done. We all know why they don’t want it legalized and it has nothing to do with the users. It’s all about the money and job security.

Don’t worry Cindy, they will get theirs in civil court.

Yeah I’m with Cindy. It’s called a “self fulfilling prophecy.” In addition, they interpret everything through the same limited lens you do. For example, they see a cartoon character printed on a sheet of LSD, which is intended to brand and identify the drug, and they presume “oh they use this to market it to the kids.” They can’t understand why a person’s life goes downhill after encountering the system, and think, “it must be the drugs.”

100% agree, that about sums it up. I love how John Lovell thinks he knows more than doctors.. and tries to make a joke about it “what are they smoking” Hes so clever and original

You sir, are misinformed

No Roger, you are the one in the smoke screen. Thanks to Dupont and that idiot who built the castle above San Simeon, marijuana is illegal. This hugely expensive prohibition was never about “getting high”. It was about the corporate greed that still haunts this country today. Big pharma is giving millions in campaign contributions (31 million in 2009 alone) to persuade legislators and that lying fool in the white house to step up the federal intervention. Big pharma wants to keep it illegal until it can corner the market. As far as law enforcement, these guys and gals are largely uneducated individuals that only know law enforcement. If we made it mandatory for law enforcement to have a bs degree (which they should have with the pay they get), we would probably get much better law enforcement quality.

Roger most of the time you are a sensible conservative with sound reasoning for your positions. So why can’t you see that the war on drugs is a war on personal freedom. The government is the wrong entity to choose which substances are OK to ingest, like nicotine, alcohol and many other prescription poisons. The law enforcement community is all for the war because they get vast sums of money in fight the war. Wrong, wrong, wrong. Let people be as long as they do no harm to others.

John Lovell is another bigot, motivated by keeping things illegal, it’s his occupation. It’s what get’s him up in the morning. His only credentials is he enforces an unenforcable federal policy, and his soul and beliefs march in lockstep to what someone in Washington tells him. He’s a tool used by big Pharma and an oppressive federalistic nation. He and his kind are given carrots in the form of federal grants to maintain our police state….follow the money.

Lovell is nothing more than a hired gun (paid for by us through the memberships of the top cops) by the Police Chief’s Loser’s Association. They take mis-appropriated public $ to pay this fool to run his potty mouth. He has no useful education otherwise he would know that: No one has ever over dosed on mmj. Mmj works to ease the symptoms of many disabling health issues. Mmj works for minor health issues (anxiety, sleep disorders). The only reason the Cartels grow it in our forests is because it is easier than transporting it across the border and it is worth a lot of money because of the federal ban. And on, and on, and on.

The DEA gets 1/2 of its war chest $ because of marijuana. Big pharma wants to keep it illegal until it can corner the market and make it illegal for the patient to grow his/her own. Then they get to make the huge money and become the world’s largest cartel with regard to marijuana. And do it legally with the blessing of Uncle Sam leaving the rest of us who use mmj to pay them to do what we can do ourselves. This is all a planned attack with the recent step up of the feds. Don’t think for a second that it is just because Nobama wants it illegal. As the number of states to legalize mmj began to climb, big pharma began to crap their shorts because they knew trouble was coming once we hit 26 states. At that point the feds would have no choice but to legalize mmj in some fasion. All they are trying to do is exactly what our constitution forbids. Never forget, this is a country by the people and for the people. Not a dictatorship as some would like.

this whole deal is about one thing: MONEY. Pretty much all cops and most of the high up government officials want to keep it illegal because of jobs. The feds and the states like their forfeiture laws and depend on gaining property in every bust. (Even though it doesn’t work out that way all the time).

At what cost do these idiots think it is worth to keep it illegal or quasi-legal. Their jobs is what they think. That is all they care about. Not what benefits mmj provides. We are coming to a major crossroads in this country. The feds have already violated the constitution by initiating the Controlled

Substance Act. This and all drug laws should have been up to the States individually. Who started the DEA, Nixon, the cheating, lying, Watergating sob.

This war has now cost well over one trillion dollars. What good has it done? We could have spent one third that amount on rehab and probably had better results. However, we would have less prisoners, less prisons, less cops. I am sure that would piss some people off.

““I wonder what they’re smoking,” said John Lovell, spokesman for the California Police Chiefs Association. “Given everything that we know about the physiological impacts of marijuana — how it affects young brains,,,”

So a police chief knows more about the effects of pot on the brain than 35,000 docs. You tell em chief,,LOL. Chief, if you’re so worried about kids health you should start by getting those (legal for minors) Monster and Red Bull drinks out of the schools. Those drinks are like speed for kids and you see so many kids drinking those legal drugs and IMO they are an addictive drug.