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Your Opinion: Legalize medical cannabis

Your Opinion: Legalize medical cannabis

January 11th, 2018 by Paul E. Frank, Jefferson City in Opinion

Dear Editor:

It is time to legalize medical cannabis. The plant produces nutritious seeds from which healthy edible oils can be pressed, plant fibers are durable and versatile with many commercial uses, and many parts of the plant have been used for thousands of years before prohibition. Marijuana is medically useful, whether politicians like it or not.

Israel has legalized medical cannabis since 1993 and is used to treat people suffering from illnesses such as cancer, Parkinson's, multiple sclerosis, Crohn's disease and post-traumatic stress disorder. Tikun Olam (repair the world) has now developed a strain called Avidekel, which contains 15.8 percent CBD but less than 1 percent THC. Other strains high in CBD specifically bred for medical use are now becoming more readily available and legal in other states.

There is a Missouri medical marijuana program, but in name only. The law states that only patients suffering from epilepsy are eligible to use cannabidiol (CBD) oil, and that the oil must be derived from hemp, and not marijuana. Hemp lacks many of the medicinal qualities that marijuana has, and many advocates believe it is nowhere near as effective as a medicine.

Missourians are compelled to locate to other states, or buy on the black market not knowing the purity of the product.

Please provide a safe opportunity to effective medications.