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Article posted: 5/17/2013 4:08 PM

Marijuana needed as a painkiller

I remember meeting a woman on a cane who had multiple sclerosis, 5-foot-6, barely weighing 100 pounds with her bones distinctively visible through her skin. She told me that marijuana was helping her to walk to the bus to see the doctor.

An old friend of mine I knew who miraculously survived pancreatic cancer had to smoke marijuana to help him deal with the pain from chemotherapy. Along with many disabled people with other debilitating diseases besides myself, it is physically difficult to move to another state just for a drug to be legalized so we can finally go back to work and live a functional life.

Inevitably, with every drug there are people who abuse them for nonmedical reasons (i.e. Adderall and Clonazepam). Ironically, these same prescription drugs can kill or cause serious medical biological withdrawals to an abuser while medical marijuana has never killed anyone and is not biologically addictive. Keep in mind that medical marijuana and "street marijuana" are not the same since the latter has not been tested by qualified doctors and street marijuana can be laced with other chemicals. Even with street marijuana there have been no reported deaths and fewer less severe side effects. These statistics can be found on www.drugwarfacts.org.

We all know the stereotypes on marijuana users -- the idiotic foolish lazy ones who play video games all day with no purpose in life. Can we place these stereotypes on people who need medical marijuana in order for them to live a life that is not painful?

Robbi Moolji

Mount Prospect

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