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Marijuana is key to curing the opioid epidemic, latest study confirms

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NORMAN, Okla. – The studies on the enormous medical benefits of marijuana just keep a-comin’. On Sept. 15, researchers out of Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health released a study where they found that states that have legalized medical marijuana saw a reduction in car crash victims who tested positive for opioids. 

The researchers examined data from 1999 to 2013, looking at a sample of 68,394 people who died in a car accident, and published their results in the American Journal of Public Health. The researchers concluded that access to medical marijuana is “associated with reductions in opioid positivity among 21- to 40-year-old fatally injured drivers and may reduce opioid use and overdose.”

This comes just two months after a research team from the University of Georgia found that states with medical marijuana access have seen a large drop in prescription drug spending, as people choose marijuana over prescription drugs to alleviate their chronic pain, depression, seizures, nausea, etc. Medical marijuana saved Medicare $165 million due to the drop in prescription drug use. 

The authors estimate that, were medical marijuana legalized nationwide, those savings would reach $468 million.

This is amazing news, and should be disseminated far and wide, but these studies are really doing no more than telling medical marijuana advocates what they already know: marijuana is the key to ending the plague of opioid addiction and death in the United States. First-hand accounts abound of the effectiveness of marijuana in treating various physical and psychological ailments are proof enough.

Marijuana also has a positive effect on an individual’s body-mass index. In a study published in the September issue of The Journal of Mental Health Policy and Economics, researchers found that daily female marijuana users have a BMI 3.1 percent lower than non-users. 

Males see a 2.7 percent decrease compared with non-users. This contradicts the pop culture nonsense that a marijuana user is a lazy, fat, and will clean out your fridge if you don’t keep an eye on him. 

Pot smokers are not only healthier, but skinnier, too!

The fact that marijuana wasn’t rescheduled by the DEA is suspicious at best. Maybe the pharma corporations are struggling to come up with a patentable cannabis pill in order to corner the market. 

But is marijuana patentable? If grandma can grow her medicine in her backyard, why would she spend hundreds, if not thousands, for a crony pill? 

That’s the recurring nightmare among the medical establishment, the one that makes them bolt upright in a cold sweat, feeling for the light switch. But it’s a nightmare that must be made a reality, because hundreds of thousands of U.S. citizens are living their own nightmare. 

A nightmare of piling bills, dangerous, ineffective pills, and a bleak future of debt and pain. Legalizing marijuana will end that nightmare. 

It will also end the gravy train that the medical establishment has been riding for decades. The proof in the studies, in the first-hand accounts: given a choice between pharma pills and marijuana, people choose the latter. 

Of course, the prohibition bureaucracy is clinging to the “marijuana is dangerous” bromide like the prayer that it is, hoping people won’t stop to question it. It’s remarkably similar to the idea that tomatoes were poisonous, several hundred years ago. 

Supposedly, in 1820, Col. Robert Johnson ate an entire bowl of tomatoes in public to disprove this ridiculous notion. Who among our current leaders will smoke a joint in public to disprove an equally foolish superstition?

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Shane Smith

Shane Smith is an accountant and freelance writer with a bachelor's degree in economics from...

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About Red Dirt Report

Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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