Hundreds of demonstrators rally at 20th Street and Massachusetts Ave in northwest D.C. in support of federally legalizing marijuana and in protest of Sen. Jeff Sessions, newly elected President Trump's pick of attorney general, on Jan 20. (Travis Riddick/The Washington Informer)
Hundreds of demonstrators rally at 20th Street and Massachusetts Avenue in northwest D.C. in support of federally legalizing marijuana and in protest of Sen. Jeff Sessions, newly elected President Trump's pick for attorney general, on Jan 20. (Travis Riddick/The Washington Informer)

For decades recreational and medicinal use of marijuana has been a tug of war between the advocates and the lawmakers who don’t realize the benefits, despite scientific research.  According to the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) marijuana is a Schedule I drug; which details the drug as having no medicinal usefulness. As of 1992 the DEA rejected to reschedule the drug as Schedule II with medicinal usefulness.

Research and firsthand accounts of people who use marijuana whether for recreational use or medicinal would argue the DEA’s perspective. The laws have become more lenient. States like Colorado, California, Massachusetts, Maine, Nevada and the District of Columbia (DC) to name a few have legalized marijuana in some form or fashion. Over 23 states have medical marijuana programs. States may fully support decriminalizing marijuana and supporting its medical usefulness, but the federal government is not in total support. This is shocking because the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Marinol (synthetic marijuana) in 1985 to treat the suppressed appetites of cancer chemotherapy patients and nausea of AIDS patients. Marinol yields a stronger “high” but is a Schedule III drug by the DEA; which supposedly has less potential for abuse. Recreational and medicinal users would object that marijuana has high potential for abuse but rather support the limited abuse potential, relative to other drugs like cocaine, crack cocaine or alcohol.

It has been suggested by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) that medical marijuana has played a role in the decrease of opioid prescription and overdose deaths. There are hundreds of cannabinoids in the marijuana plant but the two of medical interest are delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). THC is what gives the sense of being “high” and increases your appetite (munchies); reduces nausea; decreases inflammation; decreases pain and a host of other benefits. CBD doesn’t give the “high”, but can also reduce pain and inflammation; control epileptic seizures; possibly treat addictions and mental illness and more. All across the Metropolitan Area (DMV) people are using medical and recreational marijuana and not just in the form of joints but in edibles and drinkables.

This magical natural plant has a vast array of medicinal benefits:
Reverse carcinogenic effects of tobacco on the lungs of smokers
Control epileptic seizures
Decrease Dravet’s Syndrome seizure symptoms
Stop proliferation of cancer cells
Decrease anxiety
Can potentially slow the progression of Alzheimer’s Disease
Pain reduction for Multiple Sclerosis
Decrease muscle spams
Decrease Hepatitis C side effects
Treat Crohn’s disease-associated inflammatory bowel syndrome
Arthritis discomfort
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Boosts metabolism
Treat tremors associated with Parkinson’s Disease
Protect the brains from damage of Stroke victims
Treats chemotherapy associated nausea and appetite loss
Treats nausea associated with AIDS

With so many benefits that outweigh the minimal side effects to this magical and natural plant you would think that it would be legal; which leaves you to wonder why is it not?

Health Neurotics, LLC is an emerging health promotion firm in Washington, DC offering health promotion consultation products and services. Health Neurotics specialize in diet and physical activity aspects of health promotion and health education for adolescents using health literacy standards and cultural competence to targeted demographics. One of our most celebrated efforts was a guest appearance on Sirius XM Shade 45 nationally syndicated radio show, First Aid with Kelly Kinkaid focusing on Diabetes Awareness Month. Our soon to be available highlighted invention, Body Cycle is a software application game for adolescents 12 and older to actively engage in learning about chronic disease and behavior change. 

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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