Con

Andrea Barthwell, MD, former Deputy Director for Demand Reduction at the Office of National Drug Control Policy (aka Deputy Drug Czar), told PBS's NewsHour on Oct. 14, 2003:

“[T]he constituent part of marijuana, which is useful in the treating of HIV wasting, nausea associated with chemotherapy, and potentially pain, is available to physicians to prescribe in the form of Marinol…

What we’re saying is that 21st century medicine dictates that we pursue the avenues that would allow us to develop the medications that would be useful in these disorders rather than turning our medical care system back to the 19th century where plant products were in fact distributed by snake oil salesmen for the treating of a number of symptoms…

Physicians who are compassionate and practicing scientifically based, evidence based 21st century medicine would much prefer to use Marinol, which is available to them, than suggest that their patients smoke a plant. They would not want to engage in asking a patient to smoke opium to treat pain or to chew deadly Nightshade to stabilize their heart beat.”

Oct. 14, 2003