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Legalise Pot

By 24 July 2014 33

legalise-marijuana

I’m connected with a agency supporting people who are dealing with significant drug issues in their lives. But one of the the hidden issues around the use of so called illegal drugs is the application of some drugs for positive therapeutic use.

I speak of the application of marijuana for pain control in the terminal patients.

I can’t see what the objection is for the use of any drug if it is going to ease the exit of those facing the most terrifying of probabilities.

If some medico tells me that I have a limited time on this earth and tells me when I’m going out of the transit lounge, I will want to go with the least amount of trauma and pain.

Is it too much to ask that someone helps me to exit with a minimum of pain and distress? If I’m on the way out, where is the harm in my having a joint? Having a marijuana cookie? Who should care about this but me?

I’m not talking about helping me go but helping me how I go.

How about we stop pontificating about this stuff and legalise it for the terminally ill? Let them go, for God’s sake and let them go without enduring a pain filled last half hour…

I reckon that the Greens are odd people but in this case they are right. We have compassion for the living at times, we can have compassion for those left behind, how about some for the dying?

Anyone want to disagree with me? Let’s see…

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33 Responses to Legalise Pot
#1
Garfield11:24 am, 24 Jul 14

I’m sure I could disagree with you on many things John Hargreaves, but this isn’t one of them. We let people gradually kill themselves with alcohol and nicotine but we don’t let terminally ill people ease their suffering with marijuana.

#2
Bosworth11:57 am, 24 Jul 14

I have the solution for ACT’s Budget concerns:

Legalise marijuana and tax the sh1t out of it.

#3
Antagonist12:20 pm, 24 Jul 14

No disagreement here, Mr Hargreaves.

It has never ceased to amaze me that Ms Gallagher and co can look people in the eye and say no to medical marijuana. At the same time she would not bat an eyelid if prescribed ‘legal’ drugs that are derived from opium poppies grown in Tasmania. It is hypocrisy of the highest order!

#4
Conan of Cooma12:21 pm, 24 Jul 14

Why just for terminally ill pain sufferers? I can’t see why it shouldn’t just be legalised. It’s safer than grog and smokes, and being stoned is much better than walking around in a socially acceptable prescription haze. I can’t count the amount of APS I see leaving my workplace of an afternoon that have issues driving over 10Kp/h.

#5
VYBerlinaV8_is_back1:48 pm, 24 Jul 14

Bosworth said :

I have the solution for ACT’s Budget concerns:

Legalise marijuana and tax the sh1t out of it.

+1. The cops and government can’t control it now, might as well legalise it, manage it, tax it and develop a roadside test to tell if people are driving with it in their system.

#6
watto234:26 pm, 24 Jul 14

VYBerlinaV8_is_back said :

Bosworth said :

I have the solution for ACT’s Budget concerns:

Legalise marijuana and tax the sh1t out of it.

+1. The cops and government can’t control it now, might as well legalise it, manage it, tax it and develop a roadside test to tell if people are driving with it in their system.

While I agree that its probably better to legalise and regulate it, I can’t but think a lot don’t agree! Although they probably feel banning smoking and drinking is the way to go, but in that instance it would just be another illegal drug that police can’t control.

NZ legalised synthetic highs i think or something like that. For the very reason they can control, monitor, regulate and tax it!

#7
ScienceRules5:11 pm, 24 Jul 14

I agree with your position, just not with your reasoning in arriving where you are.

Pot should be legal for everyone because there’s no damn reason why it shouldn’t be. As others have pointed out, it’s much healthier and safer than alcohol or cigarettes and the fact that it’s still illegal beggars belief.

Having said that, there is little scientific support for the notion that THC has a beneficial effect in pain management or the anxiety associated with a terminal illness. If people want to use it under these circumstances then they should be allowed to do so, no question.

However modern Palliative Care is very very effective at managing the pain of most terminal illnesses and the services available to the community are significant. Most planned deaths are managed outside of the hospital system now and patients and their families have so many options and resources to return as much control as possible to them during this time.

Disclaimer – I wouldn’t smoke pot even if it were legal (wine and the occasional beer will do) and am involved with Palliative Care volunteering.

#8
John Hargreaves Ex M7:08 pm, 24 Jul 14

ScienceRules said :

I agree with your position, just not with your reasoning in arriving where you are.

Pot should be legal for everyone because there’s no damn reason why it shouldn’t be. As others have pointed out, it’s much healthier and safer than alcohol or cigarettes and the fact that it’s still illegal beggars belief.

Having said that, there is little scientific support for the notion that THC has a beneficial effect in pain management or the anxiety associated with a terminal illness. If people want to use it under these circumstances then they should be allowed to do so, no question.

However modern Palliative Care is very very effective at managing the pain of most terminal illnesses and the services available to the community are significant. Most planned deaths are managed outside of the hospital system now and patients and their families have so many options and resources to return as much control as possible to them during this time.

Disclaimer – I wouldn’t smoke pot even if it were legal (wine and the occasional beer will do) and am involved with Palliative Care volunteering.

In answer to other posts, please don’t bag Katie. Her mum died of cancer and she has a burden thus that we wouldn’t want.

Having said that, we’re not talking about social users. We’re talking about when nothing else is gunna help the pain. I’ll take a shit sandwich if it meant an end to that pain.

Incidentally, I was at one time responsible for a nursing home (before politics) and I have seen things most would prefer not to see.

When I go, if I have a preference between flying blue elephants and agonizing pain give me the elephants. And if there are no elephants but a chance, and I don’t care how slight, of a reduction in my pain, give it to me.Just give it to me. If the cops want to argue, bring it on…

#9
bundah7:31 pm, 24 Jul 14

Judging by recent polls it’s fairly clear that the vast majority of peeps are totally in favour of medicinal cannabis which is a no-brainer. Personally I don’t have an issue with legalising pot although I suspect that those who oppose legalisation may point to reports that many welfare beneficiaries in Colorado, where gunja is now legal, are regularly withdrawing their cash benefits at pot outlets.

#10
Masquara9:40 pm, 24 Jul 14

John Hargreaves hasn’t addressed the issue of links between marijuana use and schizophrenia – and the issue that today’s cannabis is many times stronger than the form he would have known in his drug experimenting days (if he had such). It’s just not quite that simple!

#11
mezza7610:24 pm, 24 Jul 14

Masquara said :

John Hargreaves hasn’t addressed the issue of links between marijuana use and schizophrenia – and the issue that today’s cannabis is many times stronger than the form he would have known in his drug experimenting days (if he had such). It’s just not quite that simple!

Completely agree. Some of the above comments about marijuana being ‘safe’ is just rubbish. It’s a drug that has had numerous trials by many medical researchers and its found to have significant negative medical effects, with prolonged use wrecking peoples mental health.
http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana

#12
Antagonist10:33 pm, 24 Jul 14

John Hargreaves Ex MLA said :

In answer to other posts, please don’t bag Katie. Her mum died of cancer and she has a burden thus that we wouldn’t want.

Cancer has affected many of us in many different ways, but it does not make my point (or the way in which it was made) any less valid or pertinent. Ms Gallagher has made public statements on the topic, and is therefore part of the public discussion.

Mr Hargreaves, I see that you support medical marijuana for the terminally ill. What is your position on its use for those who suffer from chronic pain but are not terminally ill? I have a family member who was injured in a workplace accident and will never be able to work full-time again. Said family member has undergone several surgeries and is prescribed such medical wonders as Oxycodone and Tramadol to help manage permanent chronic pain. Ten+ years of these very strong medications are having very negative long term health effects, despite their help with pain management. Should medical marijuana be available to these people too?

#13
Maya12310:43 pm, 24 Jul 14

Masquara said :

John Hargreaves hasn’t addressed the issue of links between marijuana use and schizophrenia – and the issue that today’s cannabis is many times stronger than the form he would have known in his drug experimenting days (if he had such). It’s just not quite that simple!

This discussion is about the use of marijuana for the terminally ill and pain sufferers. Any possible link between marijuana use and schizophrenia is a distraction with this limited use of the drug. The people are dying and/or in pain. If there is any link, many of the patients will be dead before any schizophrenia has a chance to manifest itself. Besides, might it not be the developing brain that is most at risk, and generally these will be adult users.

#14
Antagonist11:14 pm, 24 Jul 14

mezza76 said :

Masquara said :

John Hargreaves hasn’t addressed the issue of links between marijuana use and schizophrenia – and the issue that today’s cannabis is many times stronger than the form he would have known in his drug experimenting days (if he had such). It’s just not quite that simple!

Completely agree. Some of the above comments about marijuana being ‘safe’ is just rubbish. It’s a drug that has had numerous trials by many medical researchers and its found to have significant negative medical effects, with prolonged use wrecking peoples mental health.
http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana

What do you suppose the long-term effects of using prescription opium derivatives including Codeine or Oxycodone might be like? Do you think the long-term health effects for opium derivatives are better or worse than those for marijuana users? If you had to make a choice (as many people do) between long-term health effects from medical marijuana, versus long-term health effects from opium derivatives, which would you choose?

#15
VYBerlinaV8_is_back8:34 am, 25 Jul 14

watto23 said :

VYBerlinaV8_is_back said :

Bosworth said :

I have the solution for ACT’s Budget concerns:

Legalise marijuana and tax the sh1t out of it.

+1. The cops and government can’t control it now, might as well legalise it, manage it, tax it and develop a roadside test to tell if people are driving with it in their system.

While I agree that its probably better to legalise and regulate it, I can’t but think a lot don’t agree! Although they probably feel banning smoking and drinking is the way to go, but in that instance it would just be another illegal drug that police can’t control.

NZ legalised synthetic highs i think or something like that. For the very reason they can control, monitor, regulate and tax it!

I used to be dead against legalising dope, and have argued so previously on this site.

What changed my mind is the consideration that our law enforcement systems simply can’t deal with the problem. Dope is as common as dirt, and yet is apparently illegal.

I also have a cousin who is a stoner. A real, long term, 6 cones a day stoner. His mental health is shot to hell. He’s never had a proper job. He can’t hold a relationship (and they’re inevitably scumbags anyway). He is, frankly, a drain on both his family and on society. But the reality is that he has easily fed his 20 year habit without running afoul of the law (to my knowledge anyway), so what the hell is the point of the laws? People like him will continue to ignore the rules and do what they want, and although people say that he’s only hurting himself, he’s got 3 kids he rarely sees (to 3 different women), he constant hassles family for money, he collects several types of welfare and will likely never contribute a cent to the common purse.

So bugger it. Legalise it, tax it, and control the strength. We might as well at least collect a few bucks from the users.

#16
HenryBG9:07 am, 25 Jul 14

Cannabis is a prohibited substance, and has been so for about 75 years.

Cannabis can today be easily obtained by anybody, anywhere in Australia.

The prohibition of Cannabis has provided massive income to organised crime in Australia.

The prohibition of Cannabis consumes vast resources in law enforcement and the criminal justice system.

Nobody with a functioning brain could possibly have any kind of rational argument in favour of retaining this prohibition which has not just failed, but which has created massive costs and problems way beyond the scope of the substance it was meant to address.

The only support for this prohibition comes from irrational – or dishonest – minds.

#17
Postalgeek9:24 am, 25 Jul 14

Bosworth said :

I have the solution for ACT’s Budget concerns:

Legalise marijuana and tax the sh1t out of it.

+1 to help fund the increase in roadside saliva tests to accompany breath tests.

#18
dungfungus9:26 am, 25 Jul 14

HenryBG said :

Cannabis is a prohibited substance, and has been so for about 75 years.

Cannabis can today be easily obtained by anybody, anywhere in Australia.

The prohibition of Cannabis has provided massive income to organised crime in Australia.

The prohibition of Cannabis consumes vast resources in law enforcement and the criminal justice system.

Nobody with a functioning brain could possibly have any kind of rational argument in favour of retaining this prohibition which has not just failed, but which has created massive costs and problems way beyond the scope of the substance it was meant to address.

The only support for this prohibition comes from irrational – or dishonest – minds.

Welcome back to the keyboard arena HBG.
I see your rhetoric hasn’t changed.

#19
Maya1239:31 am, 25 Jul 14

HenryBG said :

Cannabis is a prohibited substance, and has been so for about 75 years.

Cannabis can today be easily obtained by anybody, anywhere in Australia.

The prohibition of Cannabis has provided massive income to organised crime in Australia.

The prohibition of Cannabis consumes vast resources in law enforcement and the criminal justice system.

Nobody with a functioning brain could possibly have any kind of rational argument in favour of retaining this prohibition which has not just failed, but which has created massive costs and problems way beyond the scope of the substance it was meant to address.

The only support for this prohibition comes from irrational – or dishonest – minds.

“The only support for this prohibition comes from irrational – or dishonest – minds.”
Or the crime bosses.

#20
niftydog9:55 am, 25 Jul 14

VYBerlinaV8_is_back said :

I also have a cousin who is a stoner… He is, frankly, a drain on both his family and on society.

I know people like that who’ve never touched a joint in their life.

I also know a couple of long term, 6 cones a day (or more) users who hold down high paying, high responsibility jobs, are in stable long term relationships, own their own houses and have never claimed a cent of welfare in their lives.

The vast majority of pot users are just normal, everyday people. Just like the vast majority of alcohol or nicotine users are.

mezza76 said :

Completely agree. Some of the above comments about marijuana being ‘safe’ is just rubbish…
http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana

Why does that website not have a similar page about alcohol?! That’s a safe drug too, isn’t it?

#21
VYBerlinaV8_is_back10:13 am, 25 Jul 14

niftydog said :

I know people like that who’ve never touched a joint in their life.

I also know a couple of long term, 6 cones a day (or more) users who hold down high paying, high responsibility jobs, are in stable long term relationships, own their own houses and have never claimed a cent of welfare in their lives.

The vast majority of pot users are just normal, everyday people. Just like the vast majority of alcohol or nicotine users are.

I completely agree. And given that there are people who exist at either end of the spectrum, as well as everywhere in between (much like consumers of nicotine or alcohol) then it makes sense to me to legalise, regulate and tax it. People will use it anyway, so we might as well do what we can to remove criminality and regulate its use.

#22
mezza7610:14 am, 25 Jul 14

Antagonist said :

mezza76 said :

Masquara said :

John Hargreaves hasn’t addressed the issue of links between marijuana use and schizophrenia – and the issue that today’s cannabis is many times stronger than the form he would have known in his drug experimenting days (if he had such). It’s just not quite that simple!

Completely agree. Some of the above comments about marijuana being ‘safe’ is just rubbish. It’s a drug that has had numerous trials by many medical researchers and its found to have significant negative medical effects, with prolonged use wrecking peoples mental health.
http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana

What do you suppose the long-term effects of using prescription opium derivatives including Codeine or Oxycodone might be like? Do you think the long-term health effects for opium derivatives are better or worse than those for marijuana users? If you had to make a choice (as many people do) between long-term health effects from medical marijuana, versus long-term health effects from opium derivatives, which would you choose?

Stop trying to try the issue to others – legalising this drug improves its recreational use – its that simple. And im all for providing medical marijuana and other pain reducing drugs under clinical supervision.

niftydog said :

VYBerlinaV8_is_back said :

I also have a cousin who is a stoner… He is, frankly, a drain on both his family and on society.

I know people like that who’ve never touched a joint in their life.

I also know a couple of long term, 6 cones a day (or more) users who hold down high paying, high responsibility jobs, are in stable long term relationships, own their own houses and have never claimed a cent of welfare in their lives.

The vast majority of pot users are just normal, everyday people. Just like the vast majority of alcohol or nicotine users are.

mezza76 said :

Completely agree. Some of the above comments about marijuana being ‘safe’ is just rubbish…
http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana

Why does that website not have a similar page about alcohol?! That’s a safe drug too, isn’t it?

So we have one drug that is abused, costs the taxpaying public billions in medical costs from alcohol related violence and other medical impacts, therefore we should have more. Well done.

#23
HenryBG11:04 am, 25 Jul 14

niftydog said :

mezza76 said :

Completely agree. Some of the above comments about marijuana being ‘safe’ is just rubbish…
http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana

Why does that website not have a similar page about alcohol?! That’s a safe drug too, isn’t it?

Well, they tried prohibiting alcohol and all that produced was a multi-billion-dollar international business we call “the mafia”, plus it didn’t stop people getting their hands on alcohol anyway.

The prohibition of Cannabis on the hand hand has been an enormous success, which is why people like “mezza” continue to support it.

#24
astrojax12:57 pm, 25 Jul 14

mezza said legalising this drug improves its recreational use – its that simple.

improves? sure most stoners would be all for that… or did you mean ‘increases’? well, suporting evidence on that one, please.

simple huh? it’s been unlawful for about ever and yet proliferates vastly. how would its legalisation enhance the amount of use and the problems associated with that? please do tell…

#25
John Hargreaves Ex M4:20 pm, 25 Jul 14

Much of the comments talk about recreational use and the supposed harmful effects . Schizophrenia was cited by one poster.

The issue is if has been found to ease pain, why not allow it under medical supervision for the dying? if I am gonna die in the next few weeks, I am not worried abut the long term possibilities. I just want pain relief.

In terms of the incurable chronically disabled who are in great pain but of no risk of dying shortly, I am in favour of them being allowed to access medially supervised doses of marijuana. These people don’t want to access the drug for the sake of it, to go on a trip somewhere in the universe. They want pain relief. Simple…

The salient point is that the drug would be available for specified medical conditions and administered under medical supervision.

#26
astrojax4:34 pm, 25 Jul 14

John Hargreaves Ex MLA said :

Much of the comments talk about recreational use and the supposed harmful effects . Schizophrenia was cited by one poster.

The issue is if has been found to ease pain, why not allow it under medical supervision for the dying? if I am gonna die in the next few weeks, I am not worried abut the long term possibilities. I just want pain relief.

In terms of the incurable chronically disabled who are in great pain but of no risk of dying shortly, I am in favour of them being allowed to access medially supervised doses of marijuana. These people don’t want to access the drug for the sake of it, to go on a trip somewhere in the universe.

They want pain relief. Simple…

The salient point is that the drug would be available for specified medical conditions and administered under medical supervision.

there is of course a related issue among all this discussion on hwich we have all been silent – legislation to permit the growing of hemp for fibre and other uses. Where do you stand on this, Mr H? particularly as the hemp grown for industrial purposes is entirely ineffectual for pain relief and associated recreational practices. why has this been off the table as a discussion for so long? and is canberra a region / climate in which it can be commercially grown?

#27
HenryBG5:12 pm, 25 Jul 14

astrojax said :

mezza said legalising this drug improves its recreational use – its that simple.

improves? sure most stoners would be all for that… or did you mean ‘increases’? well, suporting evidence on that one, please.

simple huh? it’s been unlawful for about ever and yet proliferates vastly. how would its legalisation enhance the amount of use and the problems associated with that? please do tell…

He has an assertion and it seems unlikely he has any facts or data to support it.

The experience of a country which decriminalised drug-taking is probably a better source of information than such empty assertions:
http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/evaluating-drug-decriminalization-in-portugal-12-years-later-a-891060-2.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drug_policy_of_Portugal

It seems the problems associated with drugs are *decreased* by decriminisation:
– lower criminal justice stats
– less money being earned by criminals
– less HIV
– fewer junkies
– fewer kids taking drugs

#28
dungfungus7:32 pm, 25 Jul 14

astrojax said :

John Hargreaves Ex MLA said :

Much of the comments talk about recreational use and the supposed harmful effects . Schizophrenia was cited by one poster.

The issue is if has been found to ease pain, why not allow it under medical supervision for the dying? if I am gonna die in the next few weeks, I am not worried abut the long term possibilities. I just want pain relief.

In terms of the incurable chronically disabled who are in great pain but of no risk of dying shortly, I am in favour of them being allowed to access medially supervised doses of marijuana. These people don’t want to access the drug for the sake of it, to go on a trip somewhere in the universe.

They want pain relief. Simple…

The salient point is that the drug would be available for specified medical conditions and administered under medical supervision.

there is of course a related issue among all this discussion on hwich we have all been silent – legislation to permit the growing of hemp for fibre and other uses. Where do you stand on this, Mr H? particularly as the hemp grown for industrial purposes is entirely ineffectual for pain relief and associated recreational practices. why has this been off the table as a discussion for so long? and is canberra a region / climate in which it can be commercially grown?

It could be grown discretely between the rows of PV collectors at the Royalla, Symonston and Urriara solar factories.
Then they could rightly call them “farms”.

#29
fair go ned12:09 am, 26 Jul 14

Fair go!

We should of legalized it years ago

#30
jasmine12:49 pm, 26 Jul 14

I can’t see a problem with your viewpoint John. If medical marijuana can ease someone’s pain and medical conditions why not. I watched Landline recently where a similar mindset is inhibiting the potential for the hemp industry to produce seed and oil (of the safe non-hallucinogenic variety). Unfortunately resistance has been due to political factors rather than reason and rational thought.

I think the public could be convinced with more information in the public arena explaining the differences, then the vote-conscious politicians might move with public opinion. (I know this doesn’t always work such as in the case of marriage equality)

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