About one year ago I wrote this:
First of all, it is crazy to me that 37% of medical marijuana users are misusing other non-prescribed drugs and this is felt to be equal to the normal population. But let’s take this study at face value. My first patient who I described above truly needed weed and was someone I could trust and the study supports that. The other patients, who I thought were just looking to get a legal excuse to smoke weed, I could not. They were already recreational users and probably abusing other drugs as well. I guess the study proves my point. It is about trust just like when we prescribe narcotics. So, to summarize, I support medical marijuana but unlike Sanjay, I am not Pollyanna about it. Just because he had some epiphany about cannibis doesn’t mean there aren’t lowlifes out there ready to abuse the hell out of it. I will stick to my 90% statement.
Now before people get on my case about being a hardass or why not just let them have it or weed never kills anyone and on and on, let me remind you of the next debacle that will occur once you open these flood gates. Right now, Medicaid isn’t paying for it (and for some funny reason these patients now have cash for it. Huh?) but there will be a movement to change this. Lawyers will eventually get this overturned and that is when the fun begins. Then the 90% will turn to 99% because it will be a great new source of income for a ton of people as they sell what they supposedly medically need. Not only will our taxes be paying for suspect people to use the drug but it will pay for their supply to sell it on the streets. And this will not change it if is legalized for non-medical use either, by the way, because these same patients will want it for free via a prescription (think about the times they ask for tylenol scripts). You may think, so what, we do this already for narcotics. And I would say, exactly.
So I wasn’t surprised when I saw this article:
If you love smoking pot, live in Berkeley and don’t make a lot of money, the city council has some good news for you: your pot may now be free .
An ordinance approved by the Berkeley City Council says that at least 2 percent of all pot carried by medical marijuana dispensaries must be provided “at no cost” to “very low-income” individuals and families.
The council defines “very low income” as individuals making $32,000 a year or less, or families of four collectively earning $46,000.
And so it begins. Right now they are putting it on the dispensaries but the theory is the same. Soon taxpayers will be paying for weed, which will used for some appropriate patients but by many questionable ones as well. Many of them will be selling it on the side.