Sioux Falls Free Thinkers

"Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent!"

For all those with Open Minds!

An Open Mind by Megan Godtland

2020 Free Thinkers Stats

2020 All Website Stats

Medical Marijuana Articles 2021
Click on the links below to get the full story from its source

Medical Marijuana has shown positive results for:

  • Relieving the Horrible Pain and Misery of Chemotherapy
  • Treating Glaucoma and Helps Prevent Blindness
  • Relieving the Painful Symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis
  • Helping Control Epileptic Seizures and Parkinson's Disease
  • Relieving the Pain and Inflammation of Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Slowing Alzheimer's Disease and Reducing Dementia
  • And Other Less Well Known Medical Problems

But the scientific support for these benefits is not as unequivocal
as medical marijuana advocates would like. Read the articles below.

11-30-21 Here’s the chemistry behind marijuana’s skunky scent
Newly identified sulfur compounds in cannabis flowers give the plant its telltale funky odor. Scientists have finally sniffed out the molecules behind marijuana’s skunky aroma. The heady bouquet that wafts off of fresh weed is actually a cocktail of hundreds of fragrant compounds. The most prominent floral, citrusy and piney overtones come from a common class of molecules called terpenes, says analytical chemist Iain Oswald of Abstrax Tech, a private company in Tustin, Calif., that develops terpenes for cannabis products (SN: 4/30/18). But the source of that funky ganja note has been hard to pin down. Now, an analysis is the first to identify a group of sulfur compounds in cannabis that account for the skunklike scent, researchers report November 12 in ACS Omega. Oswald and colleagues had a hunch that the culprit may contain sulfur, a stinky element found in hops and skunk spray. So the team started by rating the skunk factor of flowers harvested from more than a dozen varieties of Cannabis sativa on a scale from zero to 10, with 10 being the most pungent. Next, the team created a “chemical fingerprint” of the airborne components that contributed to each cultivar’s unique scent using gas chromatography, mass spectroscopy and a sulfur chemiluminescence detector. As suspected, the researchers found small amounts of several fragrant sulfur compounds lurking in the olfactory profiles of the smelliest cultivars. The most dominant was a molecule called prenylthiol, or 3-methyl-2-butene-1-thiol, that gives “skunked beer” its notorious flavor (SN: 11/27/05). The sulfur compounds have been found in nature, but never before in cannabis, says Amber Wise, an analytical chemist with Medicine Creek Analytics in Fife, Wash., who was not involved in the study. Oswald was surprised to find that prenylthiol and many of the other sulfurous suspects in cannabis share structural similarities with molecules found in garlic. And like these alliaceous analogs, a little goes a long way.

11-4-21 Support for Legal Marijuana Holds at Record High of 68%
More than two in three Americans (68%) support legalizing marijuana, maintaining the record-high level reached last year. Gallup has documented increasing support for legalizing marijuana over more than five decades, with particularly sharp increases occurring in the 2000s and 2010s. In 2013, a majority of Americans, for the first time, supported legalization. As was the case in 2020, solid majorities of U.S. adults in all major subgroups by gender, age, income and education support legalizing marijuana. Substantive differences are seen, however, by political party and religion. While most Democrats (83%) and political independents (71%) support legalization, Republicans are nearly evenly split on the question (50% in favor; 49% opposed). Weekly and semiregular attendees of religious services are split on the issue as well, while those who attend infrequently or never are broadly supportive of legalizing marijuana.

9-1-21 Illegal cannabis farms on the US west coast are poisoning wildlife
Cannabis crops grown illegally on public lands along the west coast of the US are infringing on the habitats of native species, putting predators at risk of poisoning by dangerous pesticides. Greta Wengert at the Integral Ecology Research Center in Blue Lake, California, first got an inkling of the scale of this human-wildlife conflict when cat-sized, ferret-like mammals called fishers (Pekania pennanti) turned up fatally poisoned by rodenticides. This was a surprise, considering the animals’ usual habitats are far from human developments. Wengert and her colleagues suspected that the rodenticide was coming from illegal cannabis farms, where the poison is often used to control pests, because this is one of the few major potential sources of the poison in the region’s forested wilds. To probe whether it was happening, the team used modelling to predict where illegal cannabis farms and three different threatened predators – fishers, Humboldt martens (Martes caurina humboldtensis), and northern spotted owls (Strix occidentalis caurina) – would be most likely to intersect. The team gathered law enforcement data from 1469 illegal cannabis cultivation sites in northern California and southern Oregon from 2007 to 2014. Using the environmental characteristics of the sites, the team made maps of where people were most likely to illegally grow cannabis, then compared these maps with similar models of suitable habitat for the three predator species. Areas with a moderate-to-high likelihood of cannabis cultivation overlapped with more than 44 per cent of fisher habitat, and about 48 per cent of spotted owl and 40 per cent of Humboldt marten habitats, suggesting that the animals’ risk of pesticide exposure is high. When the team surveyed some of the areas predicted to have a higher likelihood of hosting cannabis farms, 16 previously unknown sites were uncovered, validating the model’s predictive potential.

6-9-21 The federal marijuana ban is contributing to climate change
Marijuana isn't actually very green, it turns out. Cannabis is the most energy-intensive crop in the U.S., Politico reports — though it needn't be. Grown in warehouses, marijuana production can require 2,000 watts of electricity per square meter, versus about 50 watts for lettuce, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory found. But marijuana grows great outdoors — it is called "weed" for a reason — in some areas of the country, especially Northern California and Southern Oregon. "Because cannabis remains federally illegal, and the federal government regulates interstate commerce, none of the legal cannabis grown in Oregon or California can cross state lines," Politico's Natalie Fertig and Gavin Bade write. "Instead, each new state that legalizes recreational marijuana must also grow enough to meet consumer demand in that state. This would be like every state in America being required to grow all of the oranges consumed each year by its residents, rather than simply buying them from Florida." Some states and cities require indoor cannabis operations to use energy-efficient LED grow lights or take other steps to mitigate carbon emissions, but "reducing the environmental impact of cannabis in state-siloed markets is not simple — or cheap," Politico says. Allowing the country to buy marijuana grown outdoors on the West Coast may not be a perfect solution either, though, since cannabis also takes water to grow, and water is a critically scarce commodity in Northern California and Southern Oregon.

With doctor's advice and under prescription control legalizing
Medical Marijuana seems like a good idea, but the above scientific
facts will help you decide whether to support it or not.

Medical Marijuana Articles 2021