Dear Editor Mirror UK
Dr. Miriam Stoppard makes a fundamental mistake in her deduction that Canada and other regions with legalize marijuana for medical purposes are harming modern medical practise. Here in Canada, where marijuana for a medical purpose is legal countrywide, we have every form of charlton peddling hallucinogenic pot for use to relief ever medical condition including constipation and sleepless nights.Canadian kids who were surveyed that they think pot cures cancer, makes you a better driver and is in essense harmless herb.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Canada has high rates of child suicide, depression and mental illness and one of the highest rates of use by youth. The Canadian government lead by Justin Trudeau, an admitted pot user, is about to legalize marijuana for non-medical use for 12 years of age and up .
This breach with established international treaties and violation of The Rights of the Child Treaty could cost Canada an opportunity of joining the Security Council of the UN. It should lead to sanctions. All of this was orchestrated by an aggressive marijuana industry and has little if anything to do with the sovereign rights of an adult. It is all about greed, and those politicians who play along will be held accountable in the years and decades ahead, as they are now being named and shamed for their role in Big Tobacco.
Pamela McColl Vancouver BC Canada September 15 2017
The article by Miriam Stoppard published in your paper on the 7th September is totally inaccurate. Ms. Stoppard should be ashamed that as a doctor she has written an article that is so out of date. The reason why cannabis is not legal in the UK is because it is far from harmless. There are now thousands of research studies that show that this substance can cause a myriad of physical, emotional and social problems to individuals and society.
The use of extracts of cannabis – rich in CBD and with no or very little psychoactive effects in users – can indeed be very useful as a medicine – provided it is pharmaceutically produced and prescribed by responsible doctors. Such medicine already exists and is being provided for patients whose GPs believe it would be helpful to them. However, no doctor would suggest anyone, let alone a patient whose health is compromised, should use a substance by smoking it.
The latest research information beginning to be taken seriously by eminent scientists and doctors is that of genotoxicity.
This shows that with heavy use of cannabis the DNA is altered and the genes of children and grandchildren can be adversely affected. So if parents thought it was ok for their children to use cannabis – because it was recommended by Miriam Stoppard they should think again. Parents should look up genotoxicity online to read the latest research – there is even a simplified explanation at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gastroschisis
There is also a wealth of accurate information about cannabis, and other drugs both legal and illegal on www.drugprevent.org.uk
Yours faithfully. Ann Stoker, National Drug Prevention Alliance
WFAD (World Forum Against Drugs) Sept 2017 update: The CANNABIS ISSUE
New data around drug use has arrived from The National Survey on Drug Use and Health in the US. The survey sees an increase in the number of daily or near daily users of cannabis. Almost twice as many 12-17 year olds are using cannabis compared to cigarettes. Of all American 10,6 percent use illicit drugs in the past 30 Days, and as many as 1 in 4 of the Young adults use an illicit drug. The full report can be found here.
A study of the legal market in Washington State, USA concludes that the legal cannabis market is dominated by high-THC cannabis flowers. Another consequence of the legal market in Washington state is that price on cannabis has fallen dramatically. Prices of cannabis have fallen every single quarter since it was legalized in 2014 and the current retail price is 67 percent cheaper in just three years of legalization. Cannabis has become dramatically cheaper to consume and can be one of the principal factors for the increase in use that is found in the recent survey.
Another interesting study that was published in 2016 concludes that continued use of cannabis causes violent behaviour as a direct result of changes in brain function that are caused by cannabis use over many years. The study has followed the same individuals for over 50 years and can provide support for a casual relationship between exposure to cannabis subsequent violent outcomes across a major part of the lifespan. Here you can find a summery of the study.
Finally, in September two meta-studies were published on the Medical use of cannabis. The first study looks at the effects on chronic pain. The study finds limited evidence that cannabis may alleviate neuropathic pain and insufficient evidens for other types of chronic pain. The study also finds limited evidence that cannabis is associated with an increased risk for adverse Health effects. The second study looked at the benefits and harms of plant-based cannabis for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. The study concludes that evidence is insufficient to draw conclusions about the benefits and harms of plant-based cannabis preparation in patients with PTSD, but several ongoing studies may soon provide important results.