Toxic smoke is harmful, not medicinal

(Medicines don't float along with toxic smoke) 
Doctors denounce pot smoke
Sharon Kirkey, Postmedia News, August 21, 2014
They already opposed tobacco. Now the nation's doctors say Canadians shouldn't smoke "any plant material" whatsoever, including marijuana.

Delegates at the Canadian Medical Association's general council meeting voted Wednesday to formally oppose the smoking of any plant substance.

Opponents to the motion said it was a back-door way to ban medical marijuana. Some claimed it smacks of Prohibition all over again.

Taken literally, the blanket statement could cover dozens of plants that people smoke in different cultures.

But outgoing CMA president Dr. Louis Hugo Francescutti said smoking harms the lungs' "natural cleaning and repair system and traps cancer-causing chemicals" in the airways.

He cited a 2008 study by the American Chemical Society that found marijuana smoke contains many of the same chemicals as tobacco but in substantially higher levels.

Smoking marijuana may be more harmful than tobacco, partly because people often take "deeper, longer" puffs, said incoming president Dr. Chris Simpson.

The motion strengthens the CMA's opposition to marijuana for medical purposes, especially in its smoked form, he added.

The CMA has a policy supporting decriminalization of pot, "because we don't see the value of turning people who smoke marijuana into criminals," Simpson later told reporters.

On medicinal marijuana, the group's position is unequivocal, he said. "We are very sympathetic to the number of Canadians who tell us that they derive relief from marijuana. So we stand in solidarity with the patients," he said. "But our position is very clear: The evidence is insufficient to support its use as medicine."

Dr. Deborah Hellyer, a Windsor, Ont., respirologist said that smoking one joint "is equivalent to smoking 10 cigarettes."

But Dr. Ashley Miller of St. John's said the "prohibitionist" tone of the motion contradicts existing evidence and she worried about the cultural sensitivity.

Others at the meeting, held at the Ottawa Convention Centre, worried what message defeating the motion would send to the public.

"If we don't support it, it says, 'Smoke whatever you want' and I think that's a really bad message to send to the public," said Calgary physician Dr. Robin Cox.
Related news:   
Chris Simpson: Why the CMA chose not to participate in the government’s anti-pot campaign


Sham of "medical" marijuana dispensaries

Medical marijuana: Easy to get, easy to buy
A reporter had no trouble getting the medical green light required by Vancouver medical dispensaries
By Mike Hager, Vancouver Sun,  September 2, 2014
   Recreational marijuana may as well be legal in the city of Vancouver, given how easy it is for an adult to buy from a fast-growing number of dispensaries openly selling cannabis to customers.

In 2010, there were five dispensaries in the city, according to police. In January last year, police counted a dozen. Most were concentrated in the city’s Downtown Eastside or along Kingsway.

Now city hall staff say there are 45 spread across Vancouver, with a handful in trendy neighbourhoods such as Yaletown and Kitsilano. Many have lounges where friends gather to learn about the pain relief brought by different edibles or the coolest new ways to smoke different strains of B.C.’s best bud.

Technically, it’s against the law for a person to buy marijuana without a federal certificate issued on the advice of a physician or nurse practitioner.

And there has never been a federal licensing system for dispensaries.

But, responding to complaints by patients about access to marijuana, dispensaries have formed their system of issuing membership cards based on easy-to-get documentation from any medical professional.

Some of the dozens of dispensaries in the city skirt the law by teaming up with health professionals other than doctors and nurse practitioners, like naturopaths and in one case a psychologist, who issue certificates that dispensaries then rely on to let patients become members. The dispensaries then willingly sell cannabis products to these members......click "Read More" below to continue.....