As if the idea of doctors prescribing marijuana to treat people was not mind blowing enough to Middle America...
Some doctors in California have been prescribing the oral consumption of medicinal grade marijuana to teenagers with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (or ADHD).
Of course, it is not just the Sarah Palin types and close minded rubes that are taken aback by this news.
"Let me count the ways in which prescribing marijuana for teens with ADHD is a bad idea," said Stephen Hinshaw, professor of psychology at the University of California at Berkeley.
"The active ingredient in pot, THC, causes short-term memory problems and inattention, [the] very same things you want a medicine for ADHD to help alleviate."
But while it does makes sense (for the sake of argument) that maybe giving teenagers- not known for having the most maturity and the best of judgment when it comes to keeping their meds to themselves- medicinal marijuana... especially to teenagers diagnosed with ADHD, making them more likely to break rules, would it not them make just as much sense to say the same thing about giving the same judgmentally impaired teenagers Ritalin (commonly known as 'speed'), which is just as likely to be abused.
If only there was some learned voice of reason to back me up on this...
"I'd have no hesitation of giving a youngster with ADHD a trial of oral marijuana," said Lester Grinspoon, medicinal marijuana pioneer and emeritus professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School (also the author of Marijuana: The Forbidden Medicine- available at fine bookstores everywhere).
"For some kids, it appears to be more effective than traditional treatments. And marijuana certainly has fewer potential dangers than Ritalin."
Take that, Nay Sayers!
Of course, while Professor Grimspoon does acknowledge that the majority of supportive evidence in using marijuana as a treatment option for conditions such as ADHD is anecdotal, he goes on to suggest that doctors and other caregivers should listen to their pot smoking patients as "...It has been hard to collect hard data because the federal government has, for so long, said, no, marijuana is not a (legal) drug."
[Ed. Note: It is believed by many in the pro=marijuana movement that the US government's archaic stance on marijuana taints any research on the drug in its various medicinal and recreational uses.]
Of the over 36,000 medical marijuana cards distributed in California, it is unknown exactly how many of these cards have gone to teenagers (but it is acknowledged that some have gone to young people). And while the idea of treating ADHD with cannabis is not too far out there- the idea of giving it to teenagers can be a bit off putting (especially if one has the mindset which tells them that marijuana is nothing more than a useless drug which is responsible for thousands of heroin overdoses, since if not for the one time usage of marijuana there would have never been a turning to the harder drugs... cursed gateway!!!).
But for millions of parents (including myself), the idea of putting kids on a three times a day dose of medical grade speed (or God knows what else) is just as off putting... if not more so! And if just a fraction of the 4.5 million kids in America diagnosed with ADHD could find some semblance of normalcy by receiving marijuana treatments for their condition (as opposed to relying on the more toxic and addictive Ritalin treatment our society currently uses), then is not the discomfort warranted??? (And besides, with this being an issue between the child, the doctor, and the child's parents who gives a flying fuck if some fat, bored housewife in Indiana is put off by this type of treatment...)
I mean after all, is not the point of medicine to find a cure???