Medicinal Marijuana

13 05 2009

This story appeared on today’s Strike-the-Root.  It’s a touching tale of a parent’s struggle to find an appropriate treatment to relieve the suffering of her autistic child.  It’s well worth a read, especially for anti-drug zealots who conjure up images of shadowy characters on blocked off alleyways, waiting for an addict to approach and get their fix.  However, I want to share a particular extract;

Having a license, however, is different from having access to marijuana. While California has a network of “compassion centers,” basically pharmacy-like storefronts that provide quality product from registered growers, Rhode Island’s Republican governor has consistently vetoed that idea, in spite of the local stories of frail patients being mugged in downtown Providence as they go in search of pot. We weren’t about to purchase street marijuana, which could be contaminated with other drugs, so we looked into growing the pot ourselves. But by law, medical marijuana must be grown indoors, and it requires a separate room with a complex system of hydroponics, fans, and precise lighting schedules. (This made me wonder how much THC was actually in the spindly plants the high school goofballs I knew grew in their closets).

The coordinator of our patient group introduced us to a licensed grower. A recent horticulture school graduate, he’d figured out how to cultivate marijuana using a custom organic soil mix. His e-mail signature even quoted Rudolph Steiner. The grower arrived at our house with a knapsack containing jars of herbs. We opened the jars to sniff the different strains of “bud”—Blueberry, which did smell fleetingly of wild blueberries, and Sour Diesel, which had a rich, winey scent. The grower also had cured some leaves for tea, and he brought a glycerine tincture, a marijuana distillate in olive oil (yes, organic), cookies (ditto), and a strange machine that looked, fittingly, like a lava lamp. Basically an almost-bong, this vaporizer heated the cannabis without producing carcinogenic smoke.

It’s amazing from these two paragraphs alone, what can be performed when people are free.

However, this begs the question about how much marijuana on the blackmarket is of poor quality and how much is better quality of the type described above as being sold by the licensed grower.

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