After Drug Enforcement Administration Chief Chuck Rosenberg, called marijuana as medicine a “joke,” pressure is mounting from cannabis advocates for him to step down. Rosenberg said on Nov. 4, “What really bothers me is the notion that marijuana is also medicinal, because it’s not. We can have an intellectually honest debate about whether we should legalize something that is bad and dangerous, but don’t call it medicine, that is a joke. …”
Angry medical cannabis users have pointed to studies that have found the drug is effective at treating pain, muscle spasms and many other chronic conditions. Some doctors have chosen to prescribe marijuana to their patients as opposed to addictive and potentially deadly opiate based medicines. Nearly 10,000 medical marijuana supporters have signed a petition calling for Rosenberg to be replaced with a more pot-friendly DEA head.
“President Obama should fire Chuck Rosenberg and appoint a new DEA administrator who will respect science, medicine, patients and voters,” reads the petition organized by the Marijuana Majority.
At last weeks briefing with reporters, Rosenberg had harsh words about medical marijuana supporters. “There are pieces of marijuana, extracts or constituents or component parts, that have great promise,” he said. “But if you talk about smoking the leaf of marijuana, which is what people are talking about when they talk about medicinal marijuana, it has never been shown to be safe or effective as a medicine.”
Advocates for the use of cannabis as medicine strongly disagree with Rosenberg, the petition goes on to read, “Medical marijuana is not a ‘joke’ to the millions of seriously ill patients in a growing number of states who use it legally in accordance with doctors’ recommendations,” the petition reads.
“It is not a ‘joke’ to the growing number of prominent medical organizations — American Nurses Association, American College of Physicians, American Academy of Family Physicians, for example — who know that cannabis has real and proven medical benefits,” it continued.
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