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The Coalition for Medical Marijuana New Jersey

tv show

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 In an on-going effort to put a face on medical patients who need cannabis, CMMNJ has decided to avail ourselves of the resources available at Princeton TV

We are in need of camera operators, production assistants, directors, editors and clerical help. If you would like to volunteer your services, more information can be had by emailing This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

We have set June 24th as the date to begin this project, so the deadline is quickly approaching.  

change.org petition

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 Thanks to Jim Miller for the following text.  I could not have said it any better.  Please take a moment to sign the Change.org petition.

It bothers me greatly that a 15 month NJ child with epilepsy died because of purposeful hurdles placed in medical marijuana patients' way. It bothers me enough to ask my friends to sign this petition. The day after Sabina died, Governor Christie said that advocates of a bill that could have helped her were nothing more than people who wish to make marijuana legal (subtext here, perhaps, is "stoners" - although that is not what he said - you can draw your own inference). I can't tolerate Governor Christie's insult towards the parents of children in NJ who cannabis could help. This should not go unanswered. Out of state signatures are especially important considering Christie's national ambitions.

http://www.change.org/petitions/governor-chris-christie-allow-minors-access-to-compassionate-care

weed 2

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 Wow.  My small world is buzzing about this very special look at cannabis as medicine.  

You can watch all 43 minutes of this special here. Of special note, our Governor is called out for his "guidelines", the interminable wait and cost of the program here in NJ. Good luck with that damage control, Governor. We warned you that you were on the wrong side of this argument.

 

Join the discussion with us on Facebook:

It's LAW, baby!

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 Recently, our efforts appear to be gaining traction. We have asked for, and received, an amendment to the guidelines (as law) to abolish the three strain limit (dispensaries can grow what they want, and better serve the patient), and allow for a simpler approach to treating children (such as Jennie Storms son and Meghan and Brian Wilson's daughter, in addition to Tina DeSilvia and; both of these children suffer from intractable seizures which cannabis HELPS).

If you read just the headlines, you could form the opinion that our Governor, Chris Christie, has come to his senses and determined that the scientific findings are sound enough to make policy decisions on. However, we on the front lines can offer a different opinion. Yes, the Governor has appeared to relent under pressure from his constituents. Some count this as a victory, but it is a dual-edged victory. Certainly the Governor sees the political equity in this issue. He wants to appear to be meeting the needs of his contituents. However, after repeated requests to sit down with him and educate him, it doesn't appear that such a meeting is forthcoming.

Terry Stern, a respected member of the Friends of the Coalition for Medical Marijuana, NJ, had this to say in a recent op-ed: In all the flap about medical cannabis in New Jersey, a moderately plump elephant in the room is getting very little attention.

Statistics gathered from all states with medical cannabis programs show the national average of cannabis patients is 7.7 per thousand population.

There are states with as high a number as 14 per thousand and states as low as 3.

And then there’s New Jersey, which has one patient per 3,000 population. That’s like a car tracking gas usage in gallons per mile.

Unless we can show why living in New Jersey is a whole lot healthier than living anywhere else, there ought to be approximately 50,000 to 60,000 medical cannabis patients in a population this size.

Where are all the patients?

TERRY H. STERN

Pennsauken

What Mr. Stern is alluding to is that the very guidelines of the program implemented by Governor Christie is the impediment to getting patients enrolled in the program and receiving the medicine they need. Those guidelines have literally choked the life out of what would have been the strictest program in the states that have adopted medical cannabis programs. In a state with the population we have, 6 dispensaries are not enough. Currently, the one dispensary we have operating has closed its doors for lack of product. Where are the other five? Of those 1200 or so registered patients, only about 10 percent have been able to secure product under the program's guidelines, legally. So, Mr. Stern poses a very pertinent question: where are the patients? I can tell you only about my personal experience: my condition (failed back surgery, spinal cord stimulator implanted, 14 year relationship with my doctor, 10 years on narcotic pain killers) does not qualify. Nor do the vast variety of other conditions that could benefit by using cannabis. I have a prescription for Marinol, which i take 10mgs three times a day. It's fairly expensive, about $2500 per month. Why should I be relegated to take a THC-only pill when it's been scientifically proven that the other components of cannabis are much better suited to deal with pain? Because of our Governor's guidelines. Like it, or not, Governor, THIS is your program. If you had just implemented the law and not had the DHSS draw up the guidelines, you may have been able to side-step that. But, you didn't. You, in conjuction with the DHSS, have made the program unworkable. Where are the patients? We're waiting for a sign from the Governor that we will be able to get the medicine we need in a timely manner.

-- Jim Price, CMMNJ website administrator, non-qualifying patient and cannabis activist

Debunking the myths

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Very interesting bit from Terry Stern, a member of the Friends of the Coalition for Medical Marijuana, NJ.  I like it so much I may ask him to write a weekly piece.

CHRISTIE MYTHS and how to answer them

Christie Myth: Marijuana is a gateway, therefore medical marijuana will lead to dangerously increased hard drug use.

In a study commissioned by The White House, the Institute of Medicine shaved this shaggy dog naked years ago. Those who make such claims are confusing cause with correlation. People who use harder drugs often also used marijuana first. But they also often used alcohol, tobacco, hand soap and underwear before hard drugs as well, none of which are blamed for their harder drug use. The Institute of Medicine concluded that marijuana didn’t even make the list of top causes for hard drug use. This claim is stamped “fraud”.

Christie Myth: Marijuana smoke is deadlier than tobacco smoke. Any potential benefit is offset by its carcinogenic qualities.

Dr. Donald Tashkin, a leading pulmonologist, found that even regular and heavy smoking of marijuana does not lead to lung cancer. In fact, daily cannabis users not only showed a huge reduction of risk compared with tobacco smokers, they showed a slightly reduced risk of contracting lung cancer compared with total non-smokers. It seems counterintuitive, yet it is the case. And cannabis does not need to be inhaled as smoke in any event. This claim is stamped “fraud”.

Christie Myth: Allowing the medical use of marijuana will send the wrong message to children and lead to more teens using the drug.

Of 13 medical marijuana states which have before-and-after data, some show increased use, some show decreased among teens. Teens also decreased and increased usage In states with no data or no programs. The conclusion of the study by the University of Wisconsin is that there is no correlation between medical marijuana programs and teen marijuana use. This claim is stamped “fraud”.

Christie Myth: Supporting medical marijuana is politically risky.

Across the country, public support for medical marijuana is strong and steadily rising. It cuts across demographic and party lines. More than 78% of Americans support medical cannabis. New Jersey’s figure is 85%. It would, rather, seem politically risky to stand against medical marijuana. This claim is stamped “desperate”.

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