It is all the rage for politicians to push the idea that “medical marijuana” is a great idea, a medical necessity, and a wonderful new revenue source. But all of that, as it turns out, is false.
Writer Alex Berenson recently turned out a great article debunking most of the starry-eyed claims of supporters of pot and pot legalization that is very much worth a look.
In his article at Imprimis, Berenson alerts readers to the firm link between heavy use of marijuana and dangerous, violent, mental illness.
“Almost everything you think you know about the health effects of cannabis, almost everything advocates and the media have told you for a generation, is wrong,” Berenson wrote.
They’ve told you marijuana has many different medical uses. In reality marijuana and THC, its active ingredient, have been shown to work only in a few narrow conditions. They are most commonly prescribed for pain relief. But they are rarely tested against other pain relief drugs like ibuprofen—and in July, a large four-year study of patients with chronic pain in Australia showed cannabis use was associated with greater pain over time.
They’ve told you cannabis can stem opioid use—“Two new studies show how marijuana can help fight the opioid epidemic,” according to Wonkblog, a Washington Post website, in April 2018— and that marijuana’s effects as a painkiller make it a potential substitute for opiates. In reality, like alcohol, marijuana is too weak as a painkiller to work for most people who truly need opiates, such as terminal cancer patients. Even cannabis advocates, like Rob Kampia, the co-founder of the Marijuana Policy Project, acknowledge that they have always viewed medical marijuana laws primarily as a way to protect recreational users.
As for the marijuana-reduces-opiate-use theory, it is based largely on a single paper comparing overdose deaths by state before 2010 to the spread of medical marijuana laws— and the paper’s finding is probably a result of simple geographic coincidence. The opiate epidemic began in Appalachia, while the first states to legalize medical marijuana were in the West. Since 2010, as both the epidemic and medical marijuana laws have spread nationally, the finding has vanished. And the United States, the Western country with the most cannabis use, also has by far the worst problem with opioids.
But the problems are consistently ignored. Berenson adds:
After an exhaustive review, the National Academy of Medicine found in 2017 that “cannabis use is likely to increase the risk of developing schizophrenia and other psychoses; the higher the use, the greater the risk.” Also that “regular cannabis use is likely to increase the risk for developing social anxiety disorder.”
Berenson goes on to relate the shocking statistics that shows a huge increase in mental illness for people that use pot and THC. And he shows that these numbers are rising in the U.S.
This puts all Americans in danger. And with states rushing to legalize pot, it is putting more and more of us in danger all the time.
This article is long, but it is a MUST read for those who need facts to debunk the claims that pot is benign.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.