Opponents Make Case Against Legalizing Medical Marijuana

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The legalization of marijuana for medical use is an emotional issue in New York state.

A television ad, sponsored by the Marijuana Policy Project, urges Governor Andrew Cuomo and Senate leaders to give the Compassionate Care Act a green light. 

A second TV ad also will also air around the state.

The bill allows certified individuals to smoke 2.5 ounces of marijuana a month.

That could equal 150-joints a month or more. 

The serious conditions for which pot could legally be used range from cancer to nausea. 

But the head of the Alcohol and Substance Abuse Council of Jefferson County calls the act reckless.

"I know some people have found relief. Nonetheless, we can't support that unless it goes through the proper medical process...through the FDA process. We don't believe that any legislative body should be approving any chemical for medicine," said Bill Bowman of ASAC.

"So you can see something odd is going on if marijuana really was going to be used as a drug to help certain medical conditions.  Of course, it would have to be approved by FDA testing," said Dr. Brian Johnson, director of Addiction Medicine at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse.

Support for legal access to medical marijuana is at an all-time high.

More than 80 percent of New York voters approve, according to a recent poll. 

Perception that pot is harmful is at an all-time low.

The average IQ drops by 8 points.  It makes you less intelligent. It makes you have trouble remembering, concentrating," said Dr. Johnson.

The clock is ticking. 

Any medical marijuana bill would have to pass the Senate before the session concludes the end of June.

Friday, October 31, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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