Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Investigated

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A reporter for Parents Opposed to Pot did some investigating of medical marijuana dispensaries in the West.  Here’s the report.

You don’t need a card to visit a medical marijuana dispensary, but I did obtain certification for the program. It’s easy. Anyone can obtain one. Just say you have pain, no proof required; headaches qualified me.  Visits to more than 20 marijuana dispensaries in the West have been revealing, even a bit horrifying.

I asked them to educate me about marijuana. They are happy to comply and worked diligently to sell me their drugs.  However, I brought up my concern about its addictive nature. They tell me I am wrong, it is not addictive, just a little bit psychologically addictive.

Wait a minute.  That is exactly what addiction is –- psychological, a brain disease.

Asked if they are familiar with the diagnosis of “severe cannabis-use disorder, they tell me no, never heard of it, no such thing. Or they rationalize:
“That is just anti-cannabis lobby talk.”
“It’s just a medical billing code for a doctor to be reimbursed by health insurance.”

I ask if a user has to use more of the drug all the time to achieve the same “medical” results and they answer me yes sometimes, but that does not mean it is addictive or that tolerance is being built. They just like it more. I was told by one young man that he can quit any day but that he won’t because he just doesn’t like being “NOT stoned all day long.”

One young receptionist told me she has her program card for pain but she really uses pot for studying because she has never before studied as well as she does when stoned. The truth is that marijuana is known to harm the brain, not help it. Is she really studying better, or just thinking that?

I’ve been told that the doctor who oversees dispensaries has assured all of the staff and the patients that the drug is not addictive. I know current studies show otherwise and some state programs require the dispensary to give the customer a printed disclosure of the risks of addiction. Still they deny it.

In my experience the doctor is often a naturopath, although one naturopath in Oregon strongly discourages pot.

In Colorado, the only requirement to be a medical marijuana provider must be age 21 or older.   What other “professions” require no qualifications, no training?

The Arizona Medical Marijuana Program issues an annual report each year with revealing statistics. In 2014 71% of the cardholders used the drug for severe and chronic pain as their only need. 90% claimed chronic pain as one of their needs. The largest category of cardholders are males under the age of 30. It is sad that there is so much severe and chronic pain in young males.medipot dispensary

In a medical marijuana clinic in Telluride, Colorado, a young woman became irritated with my questions and began discourse about alcohol being more dangerous than marijuana. I asked if their customers replace their alcohol use with marijuana.   Here is when it got really shocking. She answered that she advised them to do the same thing she does: eat a marijuana edible before going to a bar, then drink. The name for that is cross-fading. Each substance magnifies the effect of the other.

I asked one dispensary manager why the Arizona Program has a high limit for the amount that can be purchased, roughly the equivalent of 10 joints per day. He answered “Some people are so sick they need that much”. He showed me a small bud that had been treated with extracts resulting in THC equivalent of 10 joints. Turbo pot. The state program limit is in grams, not in potency. He was showing me I can purchase FAR more than the equivalent of 10 joints per day. No one uses that much; the program has much potential for those who resell to others. A user can support drug habits of several within the limits of this program.

My investigation gave me some insight into why the marijuana industry has worked so hard to increase the potency of pot. A little bit goes a long way and the addiction potential is so much stronger.

My opinion? Medical marijuana programs in the West are recreational marijuana programs. Each expansion of marijuana laws invites more young people into addictive activity. Is that what you want for our children and grandchildren? Remember, when they enter a dispensary, they will not be cautioned about addiction. They will be encouraged to buy excessive quantities of pot. That’s what dispensaries do – sell drugs.

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8 thoughts on “Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Investigated”

  1. Studies have been done in several countries showing the medicinal benefit. Yes, some people do become addicted, but not in the numbers shown by the government. Pharma drugs are just as addictive to some but again, not all. You can die very easily from pharma drugs and alcohol. This is not the case for cannabis. I don’t agree with making it into a candy that looks good to kids. No, it is not a gateway drug any more than pharma or alcohol is a gateway drug. If you think it is ok to take prescription pain killers, please explain the hypocrisy. Cannabis is natural and pharma drugs are man made substances with many more side effects and complications. Pharma companies line the pockets of the government. Before looking for evidence against Cannabis, look at the evidence for it. Have you ever watched the video’s (and there are many) of children who suffer from seizures who have taking all the drugs out there and still suffered? Have you seen the remarkable recovery when using Cannabis? Where are the long term studies of the effects on their growing brains, you ask? Tell me where they are on the drugs they feed them. Is it ok to remove large chunks of a child’s brain but refuse them the use of a natural plant that HAS shown this remarkable remission? How about those who are among the 6% of the population who cannot take typical pharma drugs due to gene mutations that cause toxicity due do a severely slow metabolism? What would you suggest? Do nothing and suffer? We have been fed a lie for so long we no longer look at the evidence that refutes it. Yes, I smoked Cannabis when I was young. It was not the gateway drug for me. I put it down before joining the military and didn’t have withdrawals or issues due to it. Oh, I smoked it quite a bit back then and I have a Master’s Degree with an almost 4 GPA. By the way, I don’t smoke due to having children and following the law for their sakes. It’s not just a hippy thing or a “I just want to get high thing.” It is a medical thing that has shown enormous improvements with so many conditions it’s damaging to big pharma who sponsors so many of our government officials. Please put aside the preconceived notions we’ve been fed our whole lives and just look at the positives that out there for all to see.

    1. We applaud you for being luckier than some people and being able to maintain a high GPA. You have for which to be thankful. What you’ve missed from our website (yes there are many, many articles) is that we’re skeptical of using pharma drugs too. We also emphasize that everyone responds differently, although many people get paranoia. You also talk about “you were young,” ignoring the intentional genetic manipulation of the plant to give it the higher THC while lowering the CBD (CBD had some protection against the psychotropic properties of THC). Now it’s mainly THC and a much stronger pot; the incidences of psychosis and brain alteration come on much stronger than they did back in the day. The people who have become part of this group have seen too many negatives (and how it effected their children); we don’t believe in opening up to find a positive. We believe that the marijuana lobby and the marijuana industry is exploiting some sick people for their won gain. Here’s what we wrote on our FB today: Two wrongs don’t make a right.” The US created opiate addiction by using “pain” pills too freely. We’re adding to the culture of “medicating” everything by ok-ing “medical” marijuana and saying that it won’t create the overdose or addiction. While opiates may be more addictive, marijuana causes more mental impairment (loss of IQ, delusion, psychosis, hallucination, paranoia) Marijuana resulted in 455,000 ER treatments and hospitalization in 2011=nearly same for all opiate overdoses last year) We don’t solve one problem by creating another. Instead of poor public policy, we need comprehensive way to address addiction, not knee-jerk responses like “replace opiates with marijuana.”

      Any child with seizures can get approval for the medicine through New York University’s Medical Center’s Epilepsy Program. Please know that using the ganjapreneurs to get “your medicine” is unnecessary. We tend to believe that the marijuana lobby and marijuana industry’s miraculous cures are too good to be true.

  2. Dear Rea
    I feel for you and commend you to standing up for what is right. To be on the safe side I would visit your remote land and make sure they haven’t started growing on it anyway.

  3. I agree with Lori’s comment about the fact that our youth are being sold out by a government that will do nothing to stop the onslaught of marijuana that is damaging our society. Not only that, but the search engines will not pull up legitimate studies on marijuana use because the people who work for them are marijuana advocates.

    That means when a person types in a question about the damages from using marijuana, PRO marijuana websites are returned that hype the use of marijuana and denounce any studies that prove the harm caused by pot.

    I believe the government goes along with this because there is a lot of money – billions of dollars – being made in the marijuana industry and some of that must be greasing the palms of government officials and the government wants “sheeple” who will go along with whatever happens. The only thing people who use marijuana seem to care about is using marijuana, so that aces them out of having an opinion on what is happening in our country.

    My older brother, who is 61 and has been unable to stay sober throughout his adult life, now owns a warehouse that serves the dispensaries. I’m working a legitimate business and have really had to struggle in this recession, but my brother stands to make millions a year as the laws are changed to enable the marijuana industry in this country.

    We live in N California and own some land up in a remote area. We were offered $5000 a year to get a medical marijuana card and just allow a family member to grow pot on our land, but we said no. We were really, really struggling that year in our business and it was hard to turn it down! I told my husband, “Our mothers would turn over in their graves if they knew we helped to hurt one of our family members by enabling him with pot.”

    In our area the people get marijuana cards and grow it, but don’t realize it is still illegal to sell it.

    Its a sad situation and getting worse.

  4. I wonder how Americans have been duped across this country into believing the so-called “medicinal” lies spewed from these medical MJ ” clinics”. Our govt has sold it’s young people down the river as clearly this investigator has proved. MMJ is just a ruse for drug usage which quickly leads to addiction for the young brain, especially age 25 & under. There are many scientific research studies-globally- which now link today’s “turbo” pot strains ( ubiquitous in the U.S.) as the THC ( which is the mind-altering chemical) > 15% has addictive qualities on par with heroin & cocaine!!! And be aware as the germ seed of this pot plant has been intentionally manipulated to produce these high THC strains, the plant has also been bred out to eliminate the actual antipsychotic property- CBD ( the plant can’t produce high THC & high CBD). The CBDs are the ONLY true ” medicinal ” value -doesn’t produce the psychotropic high . So, our youth is growing up in this accepted culture of pot use. These MMJ “clinics” allow ANYONE to obtain a MMJ card ( as the investigator reported) because even though there is an age limit the large amount of pot each cardholder is allowed to purchase is easily than sold to more users ( often teens & young adults) who quickly become addicted- yes- addicted to marijuana!!!!!!! But sadly, few who get addicted even recognized the symptoms of addiction and the cycle of using more pot quickly becomes the norm.

    What a system- the pot grower is rewarded financially by cultivating the highest strength of the THC – and ~ 30% of users ( 50% if pot is used daily) now develop mental health problems ( severe anxiety, panic attacks, insomnia, paranoia, depression…). Do our young people ( or their parents) realize with these turbo strains of THC the scientific studies show up to 15% of users are at risk of developing psychosis ( hallucinations & delusions) and for those that develop this horrifying condition. And 5% of this group will have the chronic psychosis ( which is schizophrenia- a very debilitating mental illness that is incurable). And an emerging even worst association with today’s turbo strains of THC is SUICIDE.

    IF young people would know the true RISKS from using today’s marijuana, that using this drug is a game of Russian roulette with their brain, I bet a LOT would not touch this substance. BUT our kids (& parents) remain naive and woefully in the dark. This country is selling out its young.

    Please don’t take my word , use the free online site- PubMed – and google ” psychosis and marijuana”- there are now >1200 scientific studies all supporting the facts stated above.

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