Thursday, September 15, 2016

Medical pot or not? A yes and a no

Posted By on Thu, Sep 15, 2016 at 11:18 AM

Developments on the medical marijuana front:

* YES FOR VETS: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a former prosecutor, has signed legislation to allow providing marijuana for people with post-traumatic stress disorder.

Gov. Chris Christie signed a bill into law Wednesday that would add post-traumatic stress disorder to the list of conditions that would qualify people for medical marijuana, a move actively sought by combat veterans.

Christie said he supported the bill because an estimated 20 percent of veterans returning from the Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from this "debilitating" illness.

Other means of treatment would have be tried first before a doctor could recommend cannabis, to prevent "misuse," according to the governor's bill-signing statement.
click to enlarge KEVIN SABET: Bringing anti-MMJ message to Arkansas next week.
  • KEVIN SABET: Bringing anti-MMJ message to Arkansas next week.
* A NO FOR NOW: Arkansas will get a visit next week from Kevin Sabet, a noted crusader against legal marijuana campaigns. He's neither physician nor scientist, but has been a White House drug policy adviser and turns up in most state decriminalization efforts as CEO of Smart Approaches to Marijuana. It now advocates for "science-based, health-first mindset" regarding legalization.

Sabet might as well have been in town when Gov. Asa Hutchinson surrounded himself with establishment organization representatives to denounce the two medical marijuana initiatives. They used many Sabet talking points, particularly "Big Marijuana," and a seeming openness to FDA testing and development, a process that has gone almost nowhere in part because of resistance from the major pharmaceutical industry and marijuana's status as a Schedule 1 drug. I've asked, but don't yet know, if anyone is paying Sabet for his visit here. He's certain to be welcomed by the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce/Arkansas Farm Bureau combine leading oppositoin to allowing sick people access to marijuana.

Some Sabet background:

* An article in Alternet about what were seen as "myths" being propagated by Sabet.It argues, essentially, that Sabet dresses moral judgments in science.

* Interesting, too, is a long profile in International Business Times, which shows Sabet's evolution, or rebranding, from  to someone advocating scientific research and a so-far gauzy notion of criminal reform. It also brought up the issue of his backers.

Sabet’s detractors also make note of the fact that Stuart Gitlow, an outspoken member of Project SAM’s board of directors, is the medical director for a pharmaceutical company marketing Zubsolv, a drug designed to treat opioid addiction, and that Robert DuPont, Sabet’s mentor, helps run a consulting firm specializing in drug testing management. Sabet himself was an advisory board member of the Drug Free America Foundation, an organization founded by Mel and Betty Sembler after they shut down STRAIGHT, Inc., a highly controversial drug treatment company. Drug manufacturers and drug testing companies are also major sponsors of anti-marijuana organizations like NAADAC. Could they be bankrolling Project SAM, too?

Sabet insists that his organization receives zero funding from pharmaceutical companies, drug-testing interests or the government, although some of his trips and talks have been financed by organizations that do.

Patrick Kennedy, in town this week for a conference on drug abuse, is a co-founder of Sabet's group.

* Good YouTube here of Sabet's encounter with Sen. Cory Booker at a Senate hearing, who ripped Sabet.

Tags: , , , ,

Favorite

Speaking of...

Comments (11)

Showing 1-11 of 11

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-11 of 11

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

Most Shared

Visit Arkansas

"Locally Labeled" passport expands to accommodate booming brew scene

"Locally Labeled" passport expands to accommodate booming brew scene

As if great beer weren't reward enough, you can earn prizes for sampling local craft beverages

Most Viewed

  • Cotton seeks friendlies for town hall

    Is Tom Cotton working to pack his town hall Wednesday in Springdale with fans. So says one source.
  • NRA opposes campus carry bill as amended

    The NRA, which calls most shots on gun bills in Arkansas, now opposes the campus carry bill primarily because it adds an additional training requirement before anyone 25 and older can take a concealed weapon on a public college campus.
  • Huge turnout for Tom Cotton town hall

    David Koon and Brian Chilson are covering the Tom Cotton town hall in Springdale, which is just about to get underway.
  • Prosecutor Cody Hiland says analysis indicates Damascus is a speed trap

    Prosecuting Attorney Cody Hiland has announced completion of a State Police analysis of Damascus police speed limit enforcement and concluded that statistics indicate tickets are written in excess of limits in law that define speed traps.
  • House committee approves vote suppression amendment

    A House committee today talked about stripping colleges and the Highway Department of power and tightening procedures on constitutional amendments but in the end voted as Chairman Bob Ballinger orchestrated and expected — to put a Voter ID amendment on the 2018 ballot.

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation