A few weeks back, the new DEA Chief, Chuck Rosenberg, made some very ill-informed statements that have medical marijuana patients furious. Rosenberg told reporters that medicinal marijuana is a joke – but that is just so far from the truth it’s insane that he thought those words would go unpunished.
“What really bothers me is the notion that marijuana is also medicinal — because it’s not,” Rosenberg told reporters last week. “We can have an intellectually honest debate about whether we should legalize something that is bad and dangerous, but don’t call it medicine — that is a joke.
“There are pieces of marijuana — extracts or constituents or component parts — that have great promise,” he continued. “But if you talk about smoking the leaf of marijuana, which is what people are talking about when they talk about medicinal marijuana, it has never been shown to be safe or effective as medicine.”
While he did take the time to mention that there were components of marijuana that may be beneficial as medicine, to flat out call medicinal marijuana a joke on any level is just disrespectful to all the patients whose lives have been changed for the better because of it.
It’s these sorts of statements that continue to bring people down on the idea of medicinal marijuana – no matter how much scientific research there is, some people will always refuse to believe it. It’s not like they are losing anything personally (except perhaps some pride?) to admit that they were wrong in saying that.
However I don’t see Chuck Rosenberg doing that.
In response to these statements a pro-legalization group known as the Marijuana Majority started a petition on Change.org with hopes of getting the DEA Chief fired. The petition includes a letter written directly to President Obama, asking him to fire Rosenberg for his ludicrous statements.
Over the last two weeks since the petition was launched, it has been signed by over 100,000 people. The goal for the petition is 150,000, so they’re quite close to their goal as of right now.
The latest update to the petition came on November 18th – and it stated that there would be a group of petitioners who rely on medical marijuana marching their way down to the DEAs office. They plan to ask Rosenberg to resign or be fired – and I doubt they’re leaving until they get one or the other.
It’s one thing to be weary of recreational marijuana and its laws – though there are by far more pros than cons. On the other hand, it is not okay to call medicinal marijuana a joke. There are people who rely on this medicine to keep them going in life – and it comes with the least side effects of almost any drug out there.
I think it’s safe to say that many of us agree – Chuck Rosenberg overstayed his welcome before it even began. We need someone a little more up-to-speed on the current medical science behind cannabis as medicine.