Back in 1988 DEA Judge Francis L. Young, with the help of many doctors and testimonials from patients, put together a ruling entitled “In the Matter of Marijuana Rescheduling”. The ruling was put before Federal Courts and ultimately rejected in 1991. The most startling thing was that it was rejected due to a technicality and not because of facts. The DEA appealed against the ruling claiming that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) should also have been present during the tests and studies carried out in order to produces the ruling findings. 20 years of factual research had just been tossed out the window.
In the ruling however are 13 points which prove marijuana has a high medicinal value, and why it may even be better than the more conventional medicine we use today. With 25 states now allowing medical marijuana, would the results of the Federal Court rulings had beeen any different if it were happening today?
1. Nearly all medicines have toxic, potentially lethal effects. But marijuana is not such a substance. There is no record in the extensive medical literature describing a proven, documented cannabis-induced fatality.
2. This is a remarkable statement. First, the record on marijuana encompasses 5,000 years of human experience. Second, marijuana is now used daily by enormous numbers of people throughout the world. Estimates suggest that from twenty million to fifty million Americans routinely, albeit illegally, smoke marijuana without the benefit of direct medical supervision. Yet, despite this long history of use and the extraordinarily high numbers of social smokers, there are simply no credible medical reports to suggest that consuming marijuana has caused a single death.
3. By contrast aspirin, a commonly used, over-the-counter medicine, causes hundreds of deaths each year.
4. Drugs used in medicine are routinely given what is called an LD-50. The LD-50 rating indicates at what dosage fifty percent of test animals receiving a drug will die as a result of drug induced toxicity. A number of researchers have attempted to determine marijuana’s LD-50 rating in test animals, without success. Simply stated, researchers have been unable to give animals enough marijuana to induce death.
5. At present it is estimated that marijuana’s LD-50 is around
1:20,000 or 1:40,000. In layman terms this means that in order to induce death a marijuana smoker would have to consume 20,000 to 40,000 times as much marijuana as is contained in onemarijuana cigarette. NIDA-supplied marijuana cigarettes weigh approximately .9 grams. A smoker would theoretically have to consume nearly 1,500 pounds of marijuana within about fifteen minutes to induce a lethal response.
6. In practical terms, marijuana cannot induce a lethal response as a result of drug-related toxicity.
7. Another common medical way to determine drug safety is called the therapeutic ratio. This ratio defines the difference between a therapeutically effective dose and a dose which is capable of inducing adverse effects.
8. A commonly used over-the-counter product like aspirin has a therapeutic ratio of around 1:20. Two aspirins are the recommended dose for adult patients. Twenty times this dose, forty aspirins, may cause a lethal reaction in some patients, and will almost certainly cause gross injury to the digestive system, including extensive internal bleeding.
9. The therapeutic ratio for prescribed drugs is commonly around 1:10 or lower. Valium, a commonly used prescriptive drug, may cause very serious biological damage if patients use ten times the recommended (therapeutic) dose.
10. There are, of course, prescriptive drugs which have much lower therapeutic ratios. Many of the drugs used to treat patients with cancer, glaucoma and multiple sclerosis are highly toxic. The therapeutic ratio of some of the drugs used in antineoplastic therapies, for example, are regarded as extremely toxic poisons with therapeutic ratios that may fall below 1:1.5. These drugs also have very low LD-50 ratios and can result in toxic, even lethal reactions, while being properly employed.
11. By contrast, marijuana’s therapeutic ratio, like its LD-50, is impossible to quantify because it is so high.
12. In strict medical terms marijuana is far safer than many foods we commonly consume. For example, eating ten raw potatoes can result in a toxic response. By comparison, it is physically impossible to eat enough marijuana to induce death.
13. Marijuana, in its natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man. By any measure of rational analysis marijuana can be safely used within a supervised routine of medical care.”
Sorry about Hank, I couldn’t help myself.
Source – equalrights4all.org