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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The United States government has a monopoly on marijuana research. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) is the only government institution legally allowed to provide researchers with marijuana. Unsurprisingly, the government uses its monopoly status to only fund and/or provide marijuana for studies seeking to depict marijuana's negative attributes.

According to Reason Magazine:

Even when researchers have received Food and Drug Administration approval for their studies, NIDA frequently refuses to sell them the pot they need to carry out their research, essentially exercising a veto on the FDA’s decisions.

With NIDA bogarting America’s only federally sanctioned weed, the number of privately funded medical cannabis studies currently taking place in America right now is exactly zero. Of the 14 studies investigating marijuana in any way, 13 are NIDA projects looking into drug abuse.
This is too bad, as not only does it put the United States at odds with Latin America, but also censors viable research linking marijuana use to reduced risk of cancer.

A recent study by researchers at Brown University, Boston University, Louisiana State University, and the University of Minnesota has found that even with cigarette smoking and drinking alcohol, "10 to 20 years of marijuana use was associated with a significantly reduced risk of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma..."

Lead researcher Dr. Donald Taskin admitted that the government funded his team's research to find negative health effects of marijuana use. Instead, Dr. Taskin stated:
What we found instead was no association (between marijuana smoking and cancer) and even a suggestion of some protective effect.

At this point, I'd be in favor of (marijuana) legalization. I wouldn't encourage anybody to smoke any substances. But I don't think it should be stigmatized as an illegal substance. Tobacco smoking causes far more harm. And in terms of an intoxicant, alcohol causes far more harm (than marijuana).

Posted by Eleutherian

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