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Doctors Should Determine Medical Marijuana Eligibility, Not Politicians


doctors cannabis marijuana consumers health issuesPer the Florida medical marijuana campaign, United for Care:

Florida AG Pam Bondi doesn’t think doctors should decide what a “debilitating disease” is. Then who should?

In her filing to the state Supreme Court, Bondi actually complains that it will be a physician that will make the determination that someone has a debilitating condition.  She also seems to believe that the state – not your doctor – should define what diseases or conditions are debilitating, and what are not.

Does that make any sense whatsoever?

It seems pretty clear that physicians are more qualified than politicians to make these determinations as to whether the benefits of medical marijuana outweigh the risks to the patient. If the determination didn’t involve medical marijuana, would there be any question about this?

Regardless of what out of touch, Tallahassee politicians think, state law must change – but it won’t happen without your continued support.

We are working towards what 20 other states an DC have done.  This campaign is about delivering compassionate care, and giving our doctors the right to consider what more and more studies show actually helps people.

We must have doctors, and not politicians, determine our medical care options.

Please help us fight back against Pam Bondi’s filing by making a contribution here.


About Author

Johnny Green


  1. So is it really corn? Is it like… the Terminator (man and machine) or Jude Law in Gattaca (man made better by machines)? I know there is a difference between plants and humans, sure, but genetic inbreeding causes such yucky consequences, so why walk down that road? But when we talk about cross-breeding, well that’s a different story. Can you see a future where the real thing is hard to find and underground, while GMO is everywhere? I can. :(

  2. Scott Sherwood on

    Yes and no, whenever a plant is cross bred it takes certain traits from both parents. In this way you genetically modify the original plant. That way we can improve on the traits we desire, thc, cbd, yield, space, fast growth and large buds. Most GMO foods are either chemically or gene spliced to bring out more desirable traits, such as resistance to bugs or mold or yield any number of things. The main GMO product we consume is corn. It is inbred, cross bred, gene spliced and chemically altered. However there are many food we eat and don’t even know what they are because they won’t label. In our industry we are not at that stage yet but eventually there will be GMO weed unless the objections are too great.

  3. Yeah, pretty slim pinkins here in New Mexico, but I am grateful to have the pickins I do. Thanks for clarifying the cloning issue. I guess when I think about cloning, I think about GMOs, which include seeds, right? Or am I wrong about that too?

  4. Scott Sherwood on

    BTW clones and seeds are 2 different things. a clone is a cutting from a mother plant that is then rooted and grown as an exact replica of the mother plant. Seeds, since they come from 2 plants, mother and father, will have genetic qualities or differences of both plants. In fact there can be a few different phenotypes from the same seeds.

  5. Scott Sherwood on

    I did not realize, or even think, that there is no one to ask where you shop. Then I realized that your dispensary’s are not run the same as here in CA. I could only find one http://www.cannaceutics.org/ in Albuquerque.There are hundreds in CA. My little town of 20k has one and 10,000 members! lol Tourist business. There were 3! Good luck to you.

  6. I’ve never met a bud tender but I’m looking forward to it. I’m about to get up the courage to ask to see the farm used by my local dispensary. Another patient told me recently that this farm never uses cloned seeds (at least that what she was told). I wasn’t aware that was possible, especially here in the deserts of New Mexico, but I am curious to find out.

    I am glad you have the courage to follow your dreams of writing — a blank page is a hard boss. Good luck. I have found that most people who consume cannabis are kind souls… again, thanks.

  7. Scott Sherwood on

    Helping others is what keeps me going one day at a time. If I was unable to help others find the right medicine I might as well not advocate. Truly the more people hear my story, warts and all, the better I feel about it.Soon there will be an article or 2 then a book possibly. Since I’m undereducated my writing skills are pretty poor. I do have a GED but I never finished 10th grade. However there are people willing to help me so it’s kind of a Karmic deal.

    Hybrids usually work good for pain, sometimes even better than pure indica. It might have something to do with the different combinations of the 80 some cannabinoids. Plus if you use it to kind of “forget about or distract” the degree of pain, a strain high THC and CBD’s both.is what you could try. That may be difficult where you live, I don’t know anything about your town or your local store, Hopefully those are listed or ask the budtender which strains are high in both. Once I got used to eating it for pain relief it seems to work the best for me but unless you make your own butter it can be costly. Peace to you brother. ..

  8. How kind you are to offer me help. (big smile) But I’ve come to the conclusion that the only way to accurately determine if a medicine works for me is to actually try it before buying. And that’s a hassle, as you say, having to buy small amounts, going home to sample, and then going back to get more if desired. The dispensaries have minimums also, but the problem is more that I have to choose a new medicine so very often. Sure, I enjoy the process, but it’s very expensive. Your dispensary sounds awesome dude, and I am very jealous.

    As far as strains go, as a pain patient I thought indicas would be best, but then I switched to sativas, and then to hybrids. I think I’ve settled on hybrids. :)

    I have tried edibles and, as you know, the effects are not the same. Without the stronger effects I achieve by smoking, distraction from pain is not as easily gained. I am not searching for pain relief anymore, just a little distraction from the worst of it. I know I will have to start using edibles eventually to help with the pain, but I’m holding out for insurance coverage (not).

    However, I will take you up on your offer if I need help in the future. You can never have too many digital friends (contrary to the whole premise of facebook). peace bro

  9. Scott Sherwood on

    Hi, no it is not tacky to return product you don’t care for. I wouldn’t make it a habit though. One of the great things about my collective down the street is they have a smoking lounge so you can try it prior to leaving the store plus they offer every kind of smoking accoutrements to loan you. If you are unable to find a different store to make you purchases it will be more difficult. Your other question about a bad mood, the answer is no. Your mindset prior to smoking is what went on there. How far away from the store do you live? Would it be worth buying just a gram, going home and trying it, then returning for your main purchase? I know that sounds like a hassle, but you will never get a bad bag..

    It is the buyer at your store that is the problem. He must not know what he is doing. My private collective has 20-30 items on the menu and I never buy anything that isn’t what my patients want. The storefront collective in my town has 50-60 items. From sun grown @ $175-$200, indoor, $250-300. retail.

    It is not easy for an amateur to find the correct medicine for his ailments. It can be kind of hit and miss. Not going too much into your particular illness What do you look for as far as relieving your symptoms? Have you tried eating cannabis? Some of the least expensive weed can be turned into a decent product to help with your illness. I eat canna butter daily, the effects last longer 6-8 hrs. but you have to be careful in the amount you eat, you can eat too much and be stuck on the couch all day. If you would like to email me. woody42013@yahoo.com and we can speak further. I will give you my ph. # and we can talk about your ailment and the best strain or strains to help you. Thanks for getting in touch so I can help you. Scott

  10. Also wanted to ask you about the effect of a certain strain, in that have you ever consumed cannabis that actually put you in a bad mood? Is that even possible?

  11. I’m glad you had a lawyer to help you, although it seems strange that even with a lawyer helping you, the result still sucked.
    Did you see that documentary (the first time I was introduced to Elizabeth Warren) about how the whole credit scoring industry works? Doesn’t matter because I gave up on credit and credit scores long ago, so I’m with you on that one. :)

  12. By the hospital. The surgery was for about 30k and despite the fact that it was paid, their first attempt to “collect” was going to be in at the courthouse. I was under the correct impression that my lawyer had paid all the bills in conjunction with the insurance company when the settlement came in.
    And you’re right about credit scores. It’s a way to determine how outrageous an interest rate I should be charged if/when I purchase something on credit. Well, the settlement was large enough that I was able to buy a home and pay cash (this was when the housing crisis had hit a true low-point, a true buyer’s market). So really, buying anything on credit isn’t really on-deck, so yes, screw the credit score guys.

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  15. So, what’s on your credit report is just the filing of the lawsuit by the collections department? Was the lawsuit filed by the hospital or by a collections company (contractor)? Just curious. Also wondering if you had a knee replacement (partial or full)?
    Maybe you should do some research on the credit reporting companies and any recent legal activity, people suing, etc. And isn’t Richard Cordray working on some cases in this industry?

  16. So it’s not wrong (or tacky) to ask for an exchange? How often could I do that and have it still be okay?

  17. Scott Sherwood on

    The collections there do have a problem getting uniform product unless the grow it themselves.First if they don’t offer returns, if there is another shop, shop there. In CA there are co-op’s and storefront disperses. the difference is a co-op will buy weed from any member in the co-op. Where a collective ca buy from the grower off the street.

  18. Man, you have lost a lot. Seems like it was your calling to be an activist. :) Also makes you get off the carnival ride and understand that money comes and goes. (But mostly goes.) Our prior lives weren’t as stable as we thought, huh?
    A white coat is a symbol. We’ve seen white coats advertising and promoting the use of cigarettes, hawking big pharma’s wares, and basically lose all credibility. I want my cannabis doctor to wear, I don’t know, maybe a green coat.

  19. Credit scores are not real, just a tool for companies to use to charge people more for, well, everything.

  20. Oh, I know it’s not right to generalize about doctors. When I look over the decades of being imprisoned by the medical industry, all the expensive and sometimes-more-damaging “treatments,” I can remember every doctor I ever saw, even if I saw them only once. I’ve tried to forget, but their faces are etched in my brain. Over all that time, it is very difficult to recall one doctor that I liked or respected. And the only reason I can recall at least one decent doctor is because I’m being nice about it. :)
    I cannot visualize how legalization is going to work, whether it will be better or worse for MMJ patients. At this point, who knows? In the meantime, I’m trying to get a picture of what a good cannabis medical practice looks like, and I really wish it didn’t have to include doctors.

  21. I don’t know what I’m doing wrong in making my med choices. If I stick with a strain that I like, then the next time it comes around it’s different (and not as good). I can get the same strain in multiple places and it’s different every time. For someone who was used to getting drugs all neatly packaged at the drug store, it is more difficult than I thought it would be to pick and choose meds. (It’s not like I can do an exchange if I’m unhappy.) I have tried to find out information about “collectives” in New Mexico but have hit a wall. Is my store-front dispensary considered a collective? Do they really exist or are they just very secret groups? Do I need to learn a secret handshake? Or perhaps collectives aren’t set up in New Mexico?

  22. I’m sorry to hear that. Once upon a time, I was in a pretty bad car accident that messed up my knee pretty bad. Had to get orthopedic surgery to put it all back together. Fortunately, I had insurance through my employer, and a great lawyer. You’d think that would be the end of it. Well, no, not exactly — despite the fact that all my medical bills were paid, the hospital forgot to inform their collections department, who went ahead and ruined my credit score and set a court date to go after my assets, just like they did to you.

    This was two years after my accident, and it *was* a clerical error, but it’s forever on my credit report unless I sue to have it removed, even though it isn’t true.

    The doctors, themselves, don’t have nearly as much to do with the corruption in our healthcare system — not as much as the people at hospitals who aren’t doctors, but still make six figures. That’s especially true when they have an entire department dedicated to suing their patients for everything they have — no doctors involved in that process, just civil suit attorneys who go after everything you have because you had the audacity to get sick or injured.

  23. Scott Sherwood on

    Sorry buddy. I’m surprised, this time of year it should be pretty good from your collective. You are in NM right? I don’t know much about the collectives there. Here the menu’s are pretty fat in CA. Hopefully you will get better next time. ;>{)

  24. Scott Sherwood on

    Both you and my friend Pain make very valid points. I say the doctors, some of the wealthiest people in our nation, are the weak link. They took an oath to do no harm and to heal. In our country that DOESN’T MEAN SQUAT! Granted there are progressive doctors who believe in the power of cannabis. I know many. Most are staunch advocates for legalization. Politicians are no better. All most of them care about is money and how they can win another election. Public opinion is what is changing the pol. mind on this issue. However, the doctors on the other hand should have know better. They are supposed to be scientist’s. It turns out they are usually only in it for the money. Both my parents were doctors.

    From the most personal view anyone can have, I know from experience. You see, I was bankrupted by our failed healthcare system. A pre-existing condition forced me to go without insurance. I got ill (still am) and I lost everything. A home, 500k in retirement savings, 3 cars, on and on. Now I live on the Government’s largess, $866 a month. By all rights I should be dead with the illness I have so that is a plus. I’m glad that the money I paid into Social Security for 35 years is has actually saved me in my time of need. But that would never have happened to me if I lived in a civilized nation with healthcare for all, like most EU nations, UK, Canada, NZ and Australia.

    Even though I’m sick, my illness has made me a better advocate for MMJ and the legalization movement in general. However painkills is right. Getting re-certified every year, plus $40, is a barrier for lots of people.One look at me in my electric wheelchair it is obvious why I would need a MMJ card. But If I didn’t have a car to make the 2 hr. drive to Sac. the card would cost me $100 in my hometown. Or if I lived in another state I may not even be able to get one, that is as dumb as it comes.

  25. Oh absolutely — there are *certainly* doctors who do not even attempt to cover up the open bribery they recieve from pill manufacturers. After all, a doctor cannot know to prescribe *Wonderdrug X* unless the people who make Wonderdrug X spend millions of dollars on “conventions” and “conferences” held at pricey vacation resorts.

    No doubt, *MANY* doctors become doctors for the money, the perks, the prestige, all that jazz, and their patients’ well-being is a secondary concern (if at all). But there are doctors out there who really just want to make people better via the safest path available. Honest to goodness *healthcare* providers, who would rather cure you than bankrupt you. There are doctors who follow cannabis research closely and advocate its medical use, wholistically, without pharmeceutical processing because the most notable side-effect of its use is euphoria, not *death*.

    A story from this past June says that 76% of doctors would prescribe medical cannabis to a hypothetical 68 year old patient with cancer. Not all of them are on the take from big pharma.

  26. Perhaps the doctor-link in the chain isn’t as rusted and corroded as the others are, but it’s not like doctors are a small part of that chain. They are as complicit and corrupt as the whole chain. The needs of doctors have been placed above the needs of patients for too long. Today we may need a doctor’s certification, but hopefully this will not always be so. Giving doctors so much control in MMJ policies just creates another barrier for patients to butt up against. Another cash cow for doctors. Now that everyone and their mothers (or dealers) can become a cannabis doctor, there has been an infusion of quacks into the MMJ arena that have made us all look bad.

    It’s going to take another decade or so before a large group of seniors switch over to cannabis, at least I think so. I think all this political crap is going to slow the movement down considerably, but I guess it can’t be helped. :(

    Scott’s a joke. Florida’s a joke. If it weren’t for MMJ patients, I would suggest that a large group of Latinas jump up and down on the state line and try to make the whole state sink. (I’m grumpy. My recent medicinal purchase sucks.)

  27. That’s not really the question, here. The question is which group of people know what a “debilitating disease” is — doctors or politicians? Florida’s Attorney General, probably at the behest of Gov Rick Scott’s office, wants to make sure doctors never get the chance to make that call, themselves, by denying sick people access to cannabis, altogether.

    Making money from the healthcare industry in the country’s favorite retirement state is what Rick Scott does best. Before becoming Governor of Florida, Rick Scott was involved in the nation’s largest case of Medicare Fraud, and in-turn paid the largest fraud settlement, ever ($1.7 billion). Ensuring dishonest people (the Pharmaceutical industry, especially) can continue to juice sick people for money in Florida is Rick Scott’s chief concern.

    No need to get upset at doctors, just yet — right now, it’s the politicians in Florida who want to render the question about a doctor’s recommendation moot by preventing any change to the law. Can you imagine the hit to profits Big Pharma would take if even 20% of Florida’s retiree population switched from fist-fulls of pills, morning, noon, and night to *cannabis*, which is twenty times cheaper, infinitely safer, and quite often far more effective than their overpriced buckets of pills, full of dangerous side effects?

    The pharmaceutical industry isn’t starved for cash — they spend $19 on marketting and advertising for every $1 they spend on the R&D for their pills. Frankly, that alone is crazy, seeing as how the only two nations on EARTH that allow the advertisement of medications are us and New Zealand. Trust me, doctors aren’t the bad link in this chain.

  28. Do I need a doctor’s permission to drink caffeine, smoke cigarettes or drink alcohol? Do I need a doctor’s permission to take vitamins or drink energy powders? Doctors don’t have the answers. I say fuck ’em.

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