Has Medical Marijuana’s Moment Passed?

Andrew Sullivan —  Jan 5 2015 @ 11:26am

Kleiman wants to “move ahead with genuinely medical cannabis products, and stop using ‘medicating’ as a euphemism for getting wasted”:

If I have an infection and go to my internist, she does not say to me, “You have an infection. I have heard reports that antibiotics can treat infections. I recommend that you take some antibiotics.” No, she writes me a prescription for (say) 100 mg. of amoxicillin, three times a day, with meals, for seven days. “Blow some weed” is not a prescription. That’s the reason that “rescheduling” cannabis to recognize its medical value is a non-starter legally; rescheduling needs to follow clinical research, and would apply only to specific products, not to the plant generically. …

People who really want to make cannabis medicines ought to be arguing for freeing clinical research from its bureaucratic chains, not pretending that taking an unknown amount of an unknown mix of chemicals is the same thing as taking a pharmaceutical drug. And as states move to legalize the sale of cannabis without a medical recommendation, the justification for having a parallel “medical marijuana” supply system disappears. Unfortunately, the people making money from running that system will fight to the bitter end against any threat to their business, and do so in the name of “protecting patients.” Those battles are already being fought in Colorado and Washington.

Now that “medical marijuana” has served – as the advocates intended – to legitimize non-medical legalization, perhaps it’s time to drop the mask and have that debate on its own merits.