By listing Cannabis (Marijuana) as a Schedule 1 substance, the US Government is clearly making the statement that it holds “no medicinal value” of any kind.
Many people (as well as Doctors and scientists) are coming to realize that this is simply not true. The evidence is overwhelming and every day more studies emerge that show Cannabis to not only have an abundance of medicinal value but that this value often surpasses that of current Pharmaceutical therapies, without side effects.
It may further surprise you to know that the U.S. government also knows this and that the Department of Health and Human Services holds a patent on the use of marijuana’s primary active ingredients (THC and CBD) as both “antioxidants” and “neuroprotectants.”
It’s titled “Cannabinoids as Antioxidants and Neuroprotectants,” (U.S. Patent #6,630,507) dated October 7, 2003: (Excerpt)
Cannabinoids have been found to have antioxidant properties, unrelated to NMDA receptor antagonism. This new found property makes cannabinoids useful in the treatment and prophylaxis of wide variety of oxidation associated diseases, such as ischemic, age-related, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. The cannabinoids are found to have particular application as neuroprotectants, for example in limiting neurological damage following ischemic insults, such as stroke and trauma, or in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and HIV dementia.
So why then, if this is a known scientific conclusion, is Cannabis still prohibited and criminalized? There are actually a number of answers to this, but the short answer is that the general public has been lied to. Lied to by corporations and big industry interests, but mostly by our own government. 30 years ago a paranoid Richard Nixon launched America’s false propaganda “war on pot” and only now are we starting to realize the gravity of this poor judgement. Nixon had help as well, there was too much money at stake to allow a free plant to get in the way of billions of dollars in sales of Alcohol, Tobacco, Paper, Cotton, Oil, and of course billions more for Pharmaceuticals.
Luckily for the people, the truth has a way of coming out and a curious scientist named Dr. Mechoulam, (see The Scientist video to the right) who lived outside of the United States began to to study the complex compounds inside this interesting plant. 30 years ago, he and his associates published their incredible results, but no one took notice until decades later. When other scientists finally did take notice, they discovered a whole array of active Cannabinoid compounds and an entire system inside the human body that reacted specifically and positively to the compounds in cannabis.
Since then, our collective scientific and personal/anecdotal knowledge has grown exponentially and with it, public understanding and acceptance that perhaps this misunderstood and maligned plant deserves a second look.