Indiana Senate Committee Unanimously Approves Industrial Hemp Bill

Indiana Senate Committee Unanimously Approves Industrial Hemp Bill

INDIANAPOLIS, IN — Allowing farmers to grow hemp in Indiana could help boost the economy and dispel myths about a crop that can be used to make everything from paper to car parts, supporters told lawmakers Friday.

The testimony helped convince the Senate’s agriculture committee to unanimously approve a bill, Senate Bill 357, that would enable farmers to legally grow industrial hemp, but only if they or the state gets federal approval. Hemp is marijuana’s non-intoxicating cousin but it cannot be grown under federal law, though many products made from hemp, such as oils and clothing, are legal.

The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Richard Young (D-Milltown), said hemp fields flourished in Indiana before and during World War II, but petrochemical industries and other industries later lobbied against hemp — which can also be used to make fuel — to cut competition.

“This is a plant that has been used for centuries throughout the world and has tremendous potential,” Young said.

But lingering stereotypes have haunted efforts to legalize the crop ever since, said Neal Smith, chairman of Indiana National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.

Kentucky passed similar legislation last year, and eight other states have done the same, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

The 1970 Controlled Substances Act requires hemp growers to get a permit from the Drug Enforcement Administration. The last permit was issued in 1999 – and expired in 2003 – for an experimental plot in Hawaii. U.S. Sens. Rand Paul and Mitch McConnell of Kentucky are co-sponsoring legislation that would federally legalize industrial hemp farming.

The economic benefits remain unclear, however, and whether Indiana would receive a permit is uncertain.

Still, Indiana farmers said waiting on state legislation would be a disadvantage.

“I wish Kentucky wouldn’t always be in front of us,” Indiana Farmers Union member Pam Patrick told the committee. “When I see industrial hemp, I see money.”

University of Kentucky research from last year suggested Kentucky could support about 80,000 acres of hemp that would bring in between $200 and $300 per acre, although increasing supplies could cut that to about $100 per acre. The research shows the current national market for the crop is small, and likely could only support a few dozen jobs in Kentucky.

Also in speaking in favor of the Indiana legislation were two mothers of children with Dravet syndrome, a rare childhood disease that causes frequent seizures. Cannabidiol, a chemical in hemp, is sometimes used to stop the seizures.

Brandy Barrett broke down in tears while telling lawmakers how her 7-year-old son can’t visit the zoo because overstimulation can trigger seizures.

“Help me and help all the state of Indiana be a voice for these children,” Barrett said. “Support this bill.”

No one spoke against the bill, which now moves to the full Senate.

Over thirty countries produce industrial hemp, including Australia, Austria, Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey and Ukraine.

The United States is the only developed nation that fails to cultivate industrial hemp as an economic crop, according to the Congressional Resource Service.

The world’s leader in hemp production is China.

Controlled Substances Act , hemp , hemp cultivation , hemp farming , IN SB 357 , Indiana , Indiana hemp , industrial hemp , Richard D. Young , Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee

CONTINUE READING…

we petition the obama administration to: Issue a specific statement regarding preservation of Sovereignty and The Constitution from outside influence

Hierarchy of Law

http://usann.us/images/bg_mqyy.jpg

December 16, 2013

We begin yet again: a new 30-day window for signature gathering for our petition to protect our Sovereignty and our Constitution.

We require a specific statement from The White House regarding what efforts The White House will take & when, in support of a proposal for a Constitutional Amendment [called "Hierarchy of Law" at www.usann.us/Hierarchy_of_Law.html & further explained on that site], to preserve Sovereignty, and The Constitution as the guiding Law of the Land, & by ensuring a specific clarification of a hierarchy within the structures provided within & under that Constitution; or, a statement of why such support is not & will not be provided.

The proposal is largely designed to keep UN & similar attempts against US sovereignty, as regarding arms and the Law of the Sea Treaty, from ever allowing the UN or others to dictate to the US, while still allowing the US to adopt positions in line with such.

This petition is hosted on a White House site, https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/issue-specific-statement-regarding-preservation-sovereignty-and-constitution-outside-influence/TPXj9X26 [or http://wh.gov/l8XXM] which does require a name and an email address to “open an account”, which takes just a couple of minutes; it also hosts a lot of other petitions, accessible through the same account. It might be worth checking out even if you don’t like ours.

While we think this is clear enough for just about anybody to sign without even having to read the material referenced, we invite you to do the reading. We are pretty sure any examination of the material will only further encourage folk to sign. We hope it will also encourage people to recommend to virtually everybody they know, to sign also.

While we hold The Constitution in great esteem here, considering it something of a holy document [the house Barbarian calls it one part of his Holy Trinity], we do not see it as the beginning and ending of all things Great and Good.  Neither did those who wrote it, evidenced by one of the most miraculous features of the document: the provision(s) for amending it.
We do not consider proposing Amendment lightly for a number of reasons.  We do not think that all situations necessarily call for a change to The Constitution, in part because we think most answers are already there.  We also are not at all sure that we are somehow blessed with a special combination of skills and talents uniquely and adequately suited to the task, and we certainly claim no exclusivity in such if we are found to be reasonably suited in this instance.
Still, the ravages of 200 years of neglect in some quarters, and the creativity of some of those less-enlightened than The Founders, has brought on situations that do indeed call for changes  — and in some cases, changes to changes [like rescinding the 17th Amendment, thereby returning election of Senators to the State legislatures].  We believe that the most appropriate means by which to address this problem — and it is a problem — is, unfortunately, by Constitutional Amendment.
What follows is adapted from a more extensive work in progress [the proposal being only one of a series which are intended and structured to work together, though each is also constructed to work as an independent piece: another is "Fiscal Responsibility", for which we’ve set up a separate petition and ask assistance there as well], which we hope will explain the rather strong copyright restriction.

Loss of Sovereignty

Loss of sovereignty has been seen here for a long time.  We have watched for years as Congress made itself less and less relevant, and as the Administration and even the Judiciary sought more and more accord with international entities than with the people of the country.   Consider the array of U.N. Treaties and accords [by whatever name known] on the environment, childrens’ rights, Agenda 21, and firearms, just for openers.  Obama and his Secretary of State and others have been heading that way since coming to Power, in a number of ways and on a number of fronts; they are not the first, but they’ve been going at it with unprecedented vigor and thoroughness.

We at this site believe that the country is on the brink, not just financially, and not just on sovereignty, and not just on those two items: we are in big trouble in too many ways to address in what might be seen as "a sound bite" or a blog entry.

But the threat to Sovereignty demands, as we see it, immediate response, and if it costs us potential future earnings, well, at least we might still live, and in a country where earnings are at least a potential.  We also have seen the threat to Sovereignty as being way beyond war-making powers, which is what has brought this to a head, and we have devised our REMEDY to address Sovereignty specifically, rather than any form an attack on it might take.  We think readers will find it covers "a multitude of sins".

PLEASE CONTINUE READING THIS INFORMATION THRU THIS LINK.  IT IS OF UTMOST IMPORTANCE FOR EVERYONE TO HAVE THIS INFORMATION – EVEN IF THEY DO NO AGREE WITH IT.

Earl Blumenauer Wants Obama To Drop Marijuana From Dangerous Drug List

earl blumenauer marijuana

Rep. Earl Blumenauer speaks on Capitol Hill about the tax treatment of state-legal marijuana businesses, as anti-tax advocate Grover Norquist listens. | Michael McAuliff

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Earl Blumenauer, Marijuana, Schedule I, Controlled Substances Act, Earl Blumenauer Marijuana, Eric Holder Marijuana, Marijuana, Marijuana, Marijuana Schedule I, Obama Marijuana Legalization, Politics News

WASHINGTON — With federal law enforcement officials moving to make it easier for marijuana businesses to operate in states where they are legal, one member of Congress is calling on President Barack Obama to take the next logical step and remove pot from the federal government’s list of tightly restricted drugs.

Marijuana is listed on Schedule I, along with heroin and LSD, under the Controlled Substances Act of 1970. The Drug Enforcement Administration says that such drugs have "no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse" and that they are "the most dangerous drugs of all the drug schedules with potentially severe psychological or physical dependence."

But Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), a longtime advocate for loosening restrictions on marijuana, thinks that definition clearly doesn’t apply to weed, which can now be medically prescribed in many states. He’s begun circulating a letter to the president among other members of Congress, seeking signers who will ask that marijuana be stricken from the controlled substances categories or at least moved to a less restrictive schedule.

"Schedule I recognizes no medical use, disregarding both medical evidence and the laws of nearly half of the states that have legalized medical marijuana," the letter says.

According to Blumenauer’s spokesman, the congressman had been thinking about such a request for a while, but was sparked to pursue it after Obama told The New Yorker magazine that he thought pot was less destructive than booze.

"You said that you don’t believe marijuana is any more dangerous than alcohol: a fully legalized substance, and believe it to be less dangerous ‘in terms of its impact on the individual consumer.’ This is true," says the letter. "Marijuana, however, remains listed in the federal Controlled Substances Act at Schedule I, the strictest classification, along with heroin and LSD. This is a higher listing than cocaine and methamphetamine, Schedule II substances that you gave as examples of harder drugs. This makes no sense."

Blumenauer will gain a better sense of how many of his colleagues want to sign on to the effort when Congress returns next week, but it will likely require more than a token level of support to sway Obama. In spite of the president’s comments, White House press secretary Jay Carney told reporters last week that Obama remains opposed to decriminalizing pot.

The administration has the authority to determine which substances are and are not on the controlled schedules. Congress can also pass laws to change those lists.

Here is Blumenauer’s full letter:

We were encouraged by your recent comments in your interview with David Remnick in the January 27, 2014 issue of the New Yorker, about the shifting public opinion on the legalization of marijuana. We request that you take action to help alleviate the harms to society caused by the federal Schedule I classification of marijuana.

Lives and resources are wasted on enforcing harsh, unrealistic, and unfair marijuana laws. Nearly two-thirds of a million people every year are arrested for marijuana possession. We spend billions every year enforcing marijuana laws, which disproportionately impact minorities. According to the ACLU, black Americans are nearly four times more likely than whites to be arrested for marijuana possession, despite comparable marijuana usage rates.

You said that you don’t believe marijuana is any more dangerous than alcohol: a fully legalized substance, and believe it to be less dangerous "in terms of its impact on the individual consumer." This is true. Marijuana, however, remains listed in the federal Controlled Substances Act at Schedule I, the strictest classification, along with heroin and LSD. This is a higher listing than cocaine and methamphetamine, Schedule II substances that you gave as examples of harder drugs. This makes no sense.

Classifying marijuana as Schedule I at the federal level perpetuates an unjust and irrational system. Schedule I recognizes no medical use, disregarding both medical evidence and the laws of nearly half of the states that have legalized medical marijuana. A Schedule I or II classification also means that marijuana businesses in states where adult or medical use are legal cannot deduct business expenses from their taxes or take tax credits due to Section 280E of the federal tax code.

We request that you instruct Attorney General Holder to delist or classify marijuana in a more appropriate way, at the very least eliminating it from Schedule I or II. Furthermore, one would hope that your Administration officials publicly reflect your views on this matter. Statements such as the one from DEA chief of operations James L. Capra that the legalization of marijuana at the state level is "reckless and irresponsible" serve no purposes other than to inflame passions and misinform the public.

Thank you for your continued thoughtfulness about this important issue. We believe the current system wastes resources and destroys lives, in turn damaging families and communities. Taking action on this issue is long overdue.

Michael McAuliff covers Congress and politics for The Huffington Post. Talk to him on Facebook.

CONTINUE READING…

Earl Blumenauer Wants Obama To Drop Marijuana From Dangerous Drug List

earl blumenauer marijuana

Rep. Earl Blumenauer speaks on Capitol Hill about the tax treatment of state-legal marijuana businesses, as anti-tax advocate Grover Norquist listens. | Michael McAuliff

Follow:

Earl Blumenauer, Marijuana, Schedule I, Controlled Substances Act, Earl Blumenauer Marijuana, Eric Holder Marijuana, Marijuana, Marijuana, Marijuana Schedule I, Obama Marijuana Legalization, Politics News

WASHINGTON — With federal law enforcement officials moving to make it easier for marijuana businesses to operate in states where they are legal, one member of Congress is calling on President Barack Obama to take the next logical step and remove pot from the federal government’s list of tightly restricted drugs.

Marijuana is listed on Schedule I, along with heroin and LSD, under the Controlled Substances Act of 1970. The Drug Enforcement Administration says that such drugs have "no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse" and that they are "the most dangerous drugs of all the drug schedules with potentially severe psychological or physical dependence."

But Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), a longtime advocate for loosening restrictions on marijuana, thinks that definition clearly doesn’t apply to weed, which can now be medically prescribed in many states. He’s begun circulating a letter to the president among other members of Congress, seeking signers who will ask that marijuana be stricken from the controlled substances categories or at least moved to a less restrictive schedule.

"Schedule I recognizes no medical use, disregarding both medical evidence and the laws of nearly half of the states that have legalized medical marijuana," the letter says.

According to Blumenauer’s spokesman, the congressman had been thinking about such a request for a while, but was sparked to pursue it after Obama told The New Yorker magazine that he thought pot was less destructive than booze.

"You said that you don’t believe marijuana is any more dangerous than alcohol: a fully legalized substance, and believe it to be less dangerous ‘in terms of its impact on the individual consumer.’ This is true," says the letter. "Marijuana, however, remains listed in the federal Controlled Substances Act at Schedule I, the strictest classification, along with heroin and LSD. This is a higher listing than cocaine and methamphetamine, Schedule II substances that you gave as examples of harder drugs. This makes no sense."

Blumenauer will gain a better sense of how many of his colleagues want to sign on to the effort when Congress returns next week, but it will likely require more than a token level of support to sway Obama. In spite of the president’s comments, White House press secretary Jay Carney told reporters last week that Obama remains opposed to decriminalizing pot.

The administration has the authority to determine which substances are and are not on the controlled schedules. Congress can also pass laws to change those lists.

Here is Blumenauer’s full letter:

We were encouraged by your recent comments in your interview with David Remnick in the January 27, 2014 issue of the New Yorker, about the shifting public opinion on the legalization of marijuana. We request that you take action to help alleviate the harms to society caused by the federal Schedule I classification of marijuana.

Lives and resources are wasted on enforcing harsh, unrealistic, and unfair marijuana laws. Nearly two-thirds of a million people every year are arrested for marijuana possession. We spend billions every year enforcing marijuana laws, which disproportionately impact minorities. According to the ACLU, black Americans are nearly four times more likely than whites to be arrested for marijuana possession, despite comparable marijuana usage rates.

You said that you don’t believe marijuana is any more dangerous than alcohol: a fully legalized substance, and believe it to be less dangerous "in terms of its impact on the individual consumer." This is true. Marijuana, however, remains listed in the federal Controlled Substances Act at Schedule I, the strictest classification, along with heroin and LSD. This is a higher listing than cocaine and methamphetamine, Schedule II substances that you gave as examples of harder drugs. This makes no sense.

Classifying marijuana as Schedule I at the federal level perpetuates an unjust and irrational system. Schedule I recognizes no medical use, disregarding both medical evidence and the laws of nearly half of the states that have legalized medical marijuana. A Schedule I or II classification also means that marijuana businesses in states where adult or medical use are legal cannot deduct business expenses from their taxes or take tax credits due to Section 280E of the federal tax code.

We request that you instruct Attorney General Holder to delist or classify marijuana in a more appropriate way, at the very least eliminating it from Schedule I or II. Furthermore, one would hope that your Administration officials publicly reflect your views on this matter. Statements such as the one from DEA chief of operations James L. Capra that the legalization of marijuana at the state level is "reckless and irresponsible" serve no purposes other than to inflame passions and misinform the public.

Thank you for your continued thoughtfulness about this important issue. We believe the current system wastes resources and destroys lives, in turn damaging families and communities. Taking action on this issue is long overdue.

Michael McAuliff covers Congress and politics for The Huffington Post. Talk to him on Facebook.

Biotech giants sue Hawaiian island for passing legislation to restrict GMOs

Tuesday, January 21, 2014 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
Tags: Monsanto, Hawaiian island, GMO legislation

Hawaiian island

(NaturalNews) The "big dogs" in chemical agriculture are on a witch hunt to reverse a bill passed by the Kauai County Council back in November that sets reasonable restrictions on the cultivation of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) on the Hawaiian island. According to the Huffington Post, an unholy trinity represented by DuPont, Syngenta and Agrigenetics Inc. (an affiliate of Dow AgroSciences) has filed a federal lawsuit arguing against Measure 2491, which is intended to set buffer zones between schools and fields sprayed with pesticide, for instance, and requires companies to disclose when and where they are spraying their poisonous concoctions, as well as report genetically modified crops.

As it currently stands in Kauai, chemical companies have very few restrictions on where they are allowed to plant GM crops and how often they are allowed to spray undisclosed chemicals on fields. Because of this, many areas of the island have become toxic hotbeds, with local residents reporting allergies, neurological damage and other major afflictions stemming from exposure to GMOs and crop chemicals, one of the many issues that stands to be addressed by Measure 2491.

For more details about Measure 2491, be sure to read this earlier analysis by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger:
http://www.naturalnews.com.

But the biotechnology industry is fighting tooth and nail to destroy Measure 2491, which will presumably expose the massive environmental damage being caused by the industry’s nefarious activities on the otherwise pristine island. According to reports, the chemical industry is now claiming that Measure 2491 is somehow unconstitutional because it interferes with state and federal laws governing GMO cultivation, a desperate attempt by Big Biotech to conceal its evil deeds.

"They chose to use their money and legal power to bully us in court," stated Kauai Councilman Gary Hooser, who co-introduced the bill, about this latest threat to the democratic process. "These companies do not want our county to set a precedent that other communities are going to follow."

Chemical companies don’t want public to know what chemicals they’re spraying

The irony of the industry claiming that its rights are somehow being violated by Measure 2491, which is set to take effect in August, is that these same chemical companies have never had to prove the safety of their chemical solutions to regulators. Instead, they have repeatedly been allowed to violate the rights of the very public they are now attempting to sue by their indiscriminate use of proprietary and undisclosed chemicals.
"We do not know and cannot properly research and evaluate these impacts because the companies will not tell us what chemicals they are using," added Hooser, as quoted by the Huffington Post. "Instead, they choose to ignore the decision of our local community and take us to court."

Since its announcement, the lawsuit has generated a groundswell of support from outside organizations in support of Kauai and Measure 2491. Multiple law firms and various environmental lawyers have already offered to fight the triple lawsuit pro bono, or free of charge.

"You’ve got three very big corporations all ganging up to bring this lawsuit," noted Paul Achitoff, an attorney at Earthjustice, an organization supportive of Measure 2491. "If it costs them a little more money to beef up their security, rather than using secrecy, that’s what they need to do."

If successful in their malevolent endeavor, DuPont, Syngenta and Agrigenetics Inc. will have Measure 2491 declared invalid under the constitutions of both the U.S. and Hawaii, as well as have their own legal fees for filing the lawsuit reimbursed by the county. A scheduling conference for the lawsuit is set for April 14 in the U.S. District Court in Honolulu, according to the Huffington Post.

Sources for this article include:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com
http://online.wsj.com
http://www.naturalnews.com
http://science.naturalnews.com

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/043600_Monsanto_Hawaiian_island_GMO_legislation.html#ixzz2riUfVu1D

Biotech giants sue Hawaiian island for passing legislation to restrict GMOs

Tuesday, January 21, 2014 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
Tags: Monsanto, Hawaiian island, GMO legislation

Hawaiian island

(NaturalNews) The "big dogs" in chemical agriculture are on a witch hunt to reverse a bill passed by the Kauai County Council back in November that sets reasonable restrictions on the cultivation of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) on the Hawaiian island. According to the Huffington Post, an unholy trinity represented by DuPont, Syngenta and Agrigenetics Inc. (an affiliate of Dow AgroSciences) has filed a federal lawsuit arguing against Measure 2491, which is intended to set buffer zones between schools and fields sprayed with pesticide, for instance, and requires companies to disclose when and where they are spraying their poisonous concoctions, as well as report genetically modified crops.

As it currently stands in Kauai, chemical companies have very few restrictions on where they are allowed to plant GM crops and how often they are allowed to spray undisclosed chemicals on fields. Because of this, many areas of the island have become toxic hotbeds, with local residents reporting allergies, neurological damage and other major afflictions stemming from exposure to GMOs and crop chemicals, one of the many issues that stands to be addressed by Measure 2491.

For more details about Measure 2491, be sure to read this earlier analysis by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger:
http://www.naturalnews.com.

But the biotechnology industry is fighting tooth and nail to destroy Measure 2491, which will presumably expose the massive environmental damage being caused by the industry’s nefarious activities on the otherwise pristine island. According to reports, the chemical industry is now claiming that Measure 2491 is somehow unconstitutional because it interferes with state and federal laws governing GMO cultivation, a desperate attempt by Big Biotech to conceal its evil deeds.

"They chose to use their money and legal power to bully us in court," stated Kauai Councilman Gary Hooser, who co-introduced the bill, about this latest threat to the democratic process. "These companies do not want our county to set a precedent that other communities are going to follow."

Chemical companies don’t want public to know what chemicals they’re spraying

The irony of the industry claiming that its rights are somehow being violated by Measure 2491, which is set to take effect in August, is that these same chemical companies have never had to prove the safety of their chemical solutions to regulators. Instead, they have repeatedly been allowed to violate the rights of the very public they are now attempting to sue by their indiscriminate use of proprietary and undisclosed chemicals.
"We do not know and cannot properly research and evaluate these impacts because the companies will not tell us what chemicals they are using," added Hooser, as quoted by the Huffington Post. "Instead, they choose to ignore the decision of our local community and take us to court."

Since its announcement, the lawsuit has generated a groundswell of support from outside organizations in support of Kauai and Measure 2491. Multiple law firms and various environmental lawyers have already offered to fight the triple lawsuit pro bono, or free of charge.

"You’ve got three very big corporations all ganging up to bring this lawsuit," noted Paul Achitoff, an attorney at Earthjustice, an organization supportive of Measure 2491. "If it costs them a little more money to beef up their security, rather than using secrecy, that’s what they need to do."

If successful in their malevolent endeavor, DuPont, Syngenta and Agrigenetics Inc. will have Measure 2491 declared invalid under the constitutions of both the U.S. and Hawaii, as well as have their own legal fees for filing the lawsuit reimbursed by the county. A scheduling conference for the lawsuit is set for April 14 in the U.S. District Court in Honolulu, according to the Huffington Post.

Sources for this article include:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com
http://online.wsj.com
http://www.naturalnews.com
http://science.naturalnews.com

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/043600_Monsanto_Hawaiian_island_GMO_legislation.html#ixzz2riUfVu1D

One night in 1839….

 

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One night in 1839, a woman knocked at the door of a British Army doctor named William O’Shaughnessy who was stationed in India.

The woman’s infant was having seizures and needed help. The doctor tried several 19th-century remedies, including opium and leeches, but the convulsions grew worse over several days until the baby stopped eating and was convulsing almost constantly.

Not knowing what else to do, the doctor tried hemp, which the locals used as medicine.
A few drops of a cannabis tincture under the child’s tongue stopped the seizures almost immediately. Regular doses over the next few weeks brought the convulsions to an end.
"The child is now in enjoyment of robust health and regained her natural plump and happy appearance," O’Shaughnessy later wrote in a medical journal article, titled "On the preparation of Indian Hemp or Gunjah."
He concluded that, "In Hemp the profession has gained an anti-convulsive remedy of the greatest value."
When a few Colorado Springs families started treating their epileptic children with marijuana oil in 2012, the treatment was unknown to the modern medical establishment and the parents thought they were making the discovery for the first time. In fact, they were uncovering once widespread knowledge that had been lost or ignored during the decades-long nearly global prohibition against using marijuana as medicine.

Historical documents show that people have known for centuries that cannabis could quell seizures. In modern times, scientific studies have repeatedly shown its potential as treatment for epilepsy. But a combination of restrictive drug laws, stigma in the medical establishment and lack of funding for research caused findings to be stifled or dismissed for decades, cannabis researchers say.
The potential human cost of ignoring the evidence for so long is hard to overstate. Of the 3 million people in the United States with epilepsy, an estimated 500,000 are not helped by current medications, according to The American Epilepsy Society. About 50,000 die each year from seizures.
"Imagine if people could have had access to this in the ’50s, or the ’70s, when studies suggested it worked. Imagine how many people could have been helped," said Paige Figi, the first mother in Colorado Springs to treat her epileptic daughter with locally grown strain of marijuana. Five-year-old Charlotte had hundreds of seizures per day and had tried every available seizure drug without success. She was not expected to live long. The Figis had read some decades-old studies suggesting a compound in cannabis called cannabidiol could help. Desperate, they started giving Charlotte a local marijuana strain high in the compound. It reduced her seizures by 99.9 percent. She is now thriving.

Charlotte’s success sparked a small movement, with dozens of families who have not been helped by trying traditional treatments moving to Colorado, where the oil is produced.
Media reports featuring the Figis were the first most of these families had heard of treating seizures with cannabis, but, in fact, reports of treating seizures with cannabis stretch back more than 500 years.
"I’m a mom, I don’t have a Ph.D. Why did we have to stumble onto this?" Paige Figi said. "We feel like science has failed us. I think it’s unfortunate it has to be parents figuring this out, and science has to catch up."

Cannabis is very useful
The first known reference to the anti-seizure potential of cannabis, according to a number of academic papers, comes from an Arabic treatise from 1464 that describes how the epileptic son of a high-ranking official in Baghdad was cured by regular administration of hashish.

After returning from India, Dr. O’Shaughnassy lectured extensively in Great Britain in the 1840s on the properties of hemp and its use as a medicine in Europe became widespread.
Sir John Russell Reynolds, the personal physician to Queen Victoria, wrote in The Lancet in 1890 on the many therapeutic uses of cannabis, saying "I have found hemp very useful" for treating epilepsy.
In America, a publication called the Philadelphia Medical Times ran an article titled "Cannabis indica in the treatment of epilepsy" in 1878.
By 1900, cannabis extracts were commonly found in American pharmacies.

But, as the 20th century progressed, cannabis fell out of favor, according to the book "Cannabis in Medical Practice." Unlike opium and cocaine, the active ingredients in cannabis were harder to parse, and were not isolated until the middle of the 20th century. Pharmacists were left with a whole plant extract that could vary greatly in makeup and potency. At the same time, states were increasingly passing laws tightening control on recreational use of the plant. It was effectively banned federally by the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act.

That year, during hearings in front of the House Committee on Ways and Means, the American Medical Association spoke against criminalizing cannabis, saying many of its members prescribed it. But the committee was swayed by the testimony of the assistant commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, Harry Anslinger, who said, "Marijuana is the most violence-causing drug in the history of mankind. Most marijuana smokers are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos and entertainers. Their satanic music, jazz and swing result from marijuana usage. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes."

Medical advances stunted
The passage of the act ended the use of medical cannabis and led to a decades-long suppression of medical marijuana research that only started to lift with California’s first-in-the-nation medical marijuana law in 1996.

"Looking back, a lot of this reefer madness stuff seems ridiculous but it is also one of the great tragedies of modern medicine," said Martin Lee, author of the book "Smoke Signals, a social history of marijuana." "It impeded all kinds of medical advances. Think of all the knowledge we lost. Think of all the time we lost. We have been forced to rediscover things that were there all along. And in the meantime, these poor kids."
Even in the most restrictive years of marijuana laws, scientific studies continued to show cannabis could treat epilepsy – especially cannabidiol.
In 1949, two doctors tested marijuana compounds with six severely epileptic children. The substance controlled seizures as well as traditional drugs with three of the children, and stopped or nearly stopped all seizures in two.

"The Future for epileptics appears very bright," an article about the findings in the Salt Lake City Telegram said. "Because of not only one new drug, but a whole field of new compounds to combat epileptic seizures."

But the research went nowhere.
Similar studies in 1974, ’79, ’80, ’81, ’82 and several times since showed cannabidiol’s promising properties for regulating seizures, but each time they failed to bridge the gap from laboratory to medicine cabinet.
"There are a number of barriers to research," said Jeffrey Hergenrather, a professor at the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine, who studies the anti-cancer properties of cannabis.
First, he said, money is lacking because most research is funded by pharmaceutical companies, which have little to gain from a plant that can’t be patented.
Second, because cannabis is a tightly controlled substance, he said, research involves extra regulatory steps, including having the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency inspections that discourage many researchers.
Third, the medical establishment long had a dismissive attitude toward the research, he said.
"It is seen by some as not serious. There is a stigma. It is difficult to get your findings published," he said.
In addition, he said, doctors are hesitant to recommend cannabis because many have little knowledge of how it interacts with the human body.
"There is a whole system of chemical receptors in the human body that interacts with cannabis, and they are not taught it in medical school at all," Hergenrather said. "That shows the profound effect prohibition has had."

Cannabis now drawing attention
Now that 20 states have some kind of legalized medical marijuana, anecdotal evidence of people using cannabis to treat a number of ailments is getting the attention of mainstream medicine, and attitudes toward cannabis are starting to change, he said.

Orrin Devinsky, a New York University neurologist who specializes in epilepsy, illustrates that.
In his 2012 book "Alternative therapies for epilepsy," he wrote marijuana was "not recommended to treat epilepsy." But in late 2013, after increasing anecdotal evidence of the therapeutic potential of cannabis coming out of Colorado Springs, he held a symposium in New York on the potential of cannabidiol and began a Food and Drug Administration-approved study of the treatment of epilepsy in children with the cannabis compound cannabidiol.

"At this time, medical marijuana products show great potential for helping patients with treatment-resistant epilepsy," Devinsky told The Gazette. "However, at the current time, we lack either good safety or effectiveness data on any product. Our focus should be to obtain scientifically valid data and to remain very humble about what we do and do not know."

Follow Dave Philipps on Twitter: @David_Philipps

1464: Arab historian Ibn al-Badri writes that when "the epileptic son of the caliph’s chamberlain" in Baghdad was treated with cannabis "it cured him completely."
1839: British doctor Dr. William O’Shaughnessy, left, says experiments with cannabis in India "led me to the belief that in Hemp the profession has gained an anti-convulsive remedy of the greatest value."
1890: The personal physician to Queen Victoria, writes in The Lancet in 1890 on the medical uses of cannabis, saying "I have found hemp very useful" for treating epilepsy.
1900: Tincture of cannabis becomes a common medicine in American pharmacies.
1937: Medical cannabis effectively outlawed by Marihuana Tax Act.

1949: Two doctors give cannabis to five epileptic children. Three did as well as on other drugs. One had significant improvement, and one had seizures disappear entirely.
1977: Study of rats shows cannabidiol works as well as other anti-seizure drugs.
1980: Double blind study shows seven of eight human epileptics helped by cannibidiol, with seizures stopping entirely in half.
2003: British company GW Pharamaceuticals announces it plans to market a marijuana-based cannabidiol drug for epilepsy, with hopes of quick approval by the FDA. It has yet to be approved.
2012: Colorado Springs mom Paige Figi begins treating her 5-year-old daughter, Charlotte, with a marijuana oil rich in cannadidiol, sparking a small movement to make the treatment available to all epileptics.

– Colorado Springs-area mom Paige Figi on mission for medical marijuana

– ‘Face of Cannabis’ project aims to raise awareness, facilitate change

Read more at http://gazette.com/now-popular-in-colorado-marijuana-oil-has-long-success-history-thats-often-been-ignored/article/1513431#toEswLSou20ppmPH.99

 

 

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One night in 1839….

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One night in 1839, a woman knocked at the door of a British Army doctor named William O’Shaughnessy who was stationed in India.

The woman’s infant was having seizures and needed help. The doctor tried several 19th-century remedies, including opium and leeches, but the convulsions grew worse over several days until the baby stopped eating and was convulsing almost constantly.

Not knowing what else to do, the doctor tried hemp, which the locals used as medicine.
A few drops of a cannabis tincture under the child’s tongue stopped the seizures almost immediately. Regular doses over the next few weeks brought the convulsions to an end.
"The child is now in enjoyment of robust health and regained her natural plump and happy appearance," O’Shaughnessy later wrote in a medical journal article, titled "On the preparation of Indian Hemp or Gunjah."
He concluded that, "In Hemp the profession has gained an anti-convulsive remedy of the greatest value."
When a few Colorado Springs families started treating their epileptic children with marijuana oil in 2012, the treatment was unknown to the modern medical establishment and the parents thought they were making the discovery for the first time. In fact, they were uncovering once widespread knowledge that had been lost or ignored during the decades-long nearly global prohibition against using marijuana as medicine.

Historical documents show that people have known for centuries that cannabis could quell seizures. In modern times, scientific studies have repeatedly shown its potential as treatment for epilepsy. But a combination of restrictive drug laws, stigma in the medical establishment and lack of funding for research caused findings to be stifled or dismissed for decades, cannabis researchers say.
The potential human cost of ignoring the evidence for so long is hard to overstate. Of the 3 million people in the United States with epilepsy, an estimated 500,000 are not helped by current medications, according to The American Epilepsy Society. About 50,000 die each year from seizures.
"Imagine if people could have had access to this in the ’50s, or the ’70s, when studies suggested it worked. Imagine how many people could have been helped," said Paige Figi, the first mother in Colorado Springs to treat her epileptic daughter with locally grown strain of marijuana. Five-year-old Charlotte had hundreds of seizures per day and had tried every available seizure drug without success. She was not expected to live long. The Figis had read some decades-old studies suggesting a compound in cannabis called cannabidiol could help. Desperate, they started giving Charlotte a local marijuana strain high in the compound. It reduced her seizures by 99.9 percent. She is now thriving.

Charlotte’s success sparked a small movement, with dozens of families who have not been helped by trying traditional treatments moving to Colorado, where the oil is produced.
Media reports featuring the Figis were the first most of these families had heard of treating seizures with cannabis, but, in fact, reports of treating seizures with cannabis stretch back more than 500 years.
"I’m a mom, I don’t have a Ph.D. Why did we have to stumble onto this?" Paige Figi said. "We feel like science has failed us. I think it’s unfortunate it has to be parents figuring this out, and science has to catch up."

Cannabis is very useful
The first known reference to the anti-seizure potential of cannabis, according to a number of academic papers, comes from an Arabic treatise from 1464 that describes how the epileptic son of a high-ranking official in Baghdad was cured by regular administration of hashish.

After returning from India, Dr. O’Shaughnassy lectured extensively in Great Britain in the 1840s on the properties of hemp and its use as a medicine in Europe became widespread.
Sir John Russell Reynolds, the personal physician to Queen Victoria, wrote in The Lancet in 1890 on the many therapeutic uses of cannabis, saying "I have found hemp very useful" for treating epilepsy.
In America, a publication called the Philadelphia Medical Times ran an article titled "Cannabis indica in the treatment of epilepsy" in 1878.
By 1900, cannabis extracts were commonly found in American pharmacies.

But, as the 20th century progressed, cannabis fell out of favor, according to the book "Cannabis in Medical Practice." Unlike opium and cocaine, the active ingredients in cannabis were harder to parse, and were not isolated until the middle of the 20th century. Pharmacists were left with a whole plant extract that could vary greatly in makeup and potency. At the same time, states were increasingly passing laws tightening control on recreational use of the plant. It was effectively banned federally by the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act.

That year, during hearings in front of the House Committee on Ways and Means, the American Medical Association spoke against criminalizing cannabis, saying many of its members prescribed it. But the committee was swayed by the testimony of the assistant commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, Harry Anslinger, who said, "Marijuana is the most violence-causing drug in the history of mankind. Most marijuana smokers are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos and entertainers. Their satanic music, jazz and swing result from marijuana usage. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes."

Medical advances stunted
The passage of the act ended the use of medical cannabis and led to a decades-long suppression of medical marijuana research that only started to lift with California’s first-in-the-nation medical marijuana law in 1996.

"Looking back, a lot of this reefer madness stuff seems ridiculous but it is also one of the great tragedies of modern medicine," said Martin Lee, author of the book "Smoke Signals, a social history of marijuana." "It impeded all kinds of medical advances. Think of all the knowledge we lost. Think of all the time we lost. We have been forced to rediscover things that were there all along. And in the meantime, these poor kids."
Even in the most restrictive years of marijuana laws, scientific studies continued to show cannabis could treat epilepsy – especially cannabidiol.
In 1949, two doctors tested marijuana compounds with six severely epileptic children. The substance controlled seizures as well as traditional drugs with three of the children, and stopped or nearly stopped all seizures in two.

"The Future for epileptics appears very bright," an article about the findings in the Salt Lake City Telegram said. "Because of not only one new drug, but a whole field of new compounds to combat epileptic seizures."

But the research went nowhere.
Similar studies in 1974, ’79, ’80, ’81, ’82 and several times since showed cannabidiol’s promising properties for regulating seizures, but each time they failed to bridge the gap from laboratory to medicine cabinet.
"There are a number of barriers to research," said Jeffrey Hergenrather, a professor at the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine, who studies the anti-cancer properties of cannabis.
First, he said, money is lacking because most research is funded by pharmaceutical companies, which have little to gain from a plant that can’t be patented.
Second, because cannabis is a tightly controlled substance, he said, research involves extra regulatory steps, including having the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency inspections that discourage many researchers.
Third, the medical establishment long had a dismissive attitude toward the research, he said.
"It is seen by some as not serious. There is a stigma. It is difficult to get your findings published," he said.
In addition, he said, doctors are hesitant to recommend cannabis because many have little knowledge of how it interacts with the human body.
"There is a whole system of chemical receptors in the human body that interacts with cannabis, and they are not taught it in medical school at all," Hergenrather said. "That shows the profound effect prohibition has had."

Cannabis now drawing attention
Now that 20 states have some kind of legalized medical marijuana, anecdotal evidence of people using cannabis to treat a number of ailments is getting the attention of mainstream medicine, and attitudes toward cannabis are starting to change, he said.

Orrin Devinsky, a New York University neurologist who specializes in epilepsy, illustrates that.
In his 2012 book "Alternative therapies for epilepsy," he wrote marijuana was "not recommended to treat epilepsy." But in late 2013, after increasing anecdotal evidence of the therapeutic potential of cannabis coming out of Colorado Springs, he held a symposium in New York on the potential of cannabidiol and began a Food and Drug Administration-approved study of the treatment of epilepsy in children with the cannabis compound cannabidiol.

"At this time, medical marijuana products show great potential for helping patients with treatment-resistant epilepsy," Devinsky told The Gazette. "However, at the current time, we lack either good safety or effectiveness data on any product. Our focus should be to obtain scientifically valid data and to remain very humble about what we do and do not know."

Follow Dave Philipps on Twitter: @David_Philipps

1464: Arab historian Ibn al-Badri writes that when "the epileptic son of the caliph’s chamberlain" in Baghdad was treated with cannabis "it cured him completely."
1839: British doctor Dr. William O’Shaughnessy, left, says experiments with cannabis in India "led me to the belief that in Hemp the profession has gained an anti-convulsive remedy of the greatest value."
1890: The personal physician to Queen Victoria, writes in The Lancet in 1890 on the medical uses of cannabis, saying "I have found hemp very useful" for treating epilepsy.
1900: Tincture of cannabis becomes a common medicine in American pharmacies.
1937: Medical cannabis effectively outlawed by Marihuana Tax Act.

1949: Two doctors give cannabis to five epileptic children. Three did as well as on other drugs. One had significant improvement, and one had seizures disappear entirely.
1977: Study of rats shows cannabidiol works as well as other anti-seizure drugs.
1980: Double blind study shows seven of eight human epileptics helped by cannibidiol, with seizures stopping entirely in half.
2003: British company GW Pharamaceuticals announces it plans to market a marijuana-based cannabidiol drug for epilepsy, with hopes of quick approval by the FDA. It has yet to be approved.
2012: Colorado Springs mom Paige Figi begins treating her 5-year-old daughter, Charlotte, with a marijuana oil rich in cannadidiol, sparking a small movement to make the treatment available to all epileptics.

– Colorado Springs-area mom Paige Figi on mission for medical marijuana

– ‘Face of Cannabis’ project aims to raise awareness, facilitate change

Read more at http://gazette.com/now-popular-in-colorado-marijuana-oil-has-long-success-history-thats-often-been-ignored/article/1513431#toEswLSou20ppmPH.99

 

 

CONTINUE READING…