Despite Science, New Medical Cannabis Laws Prohibit Smoked Cannabis

A CBS poll taken in early January of this year concluded that 86 percent of the nation now supports safe access to cannabis at a doctor’s discretion and there are no signs of public opinion reversing on any other element of cannabis legalization. As public opinion changes, legislatures around the country have explored ways to meet local demand for safe access.

As marijuana becomes incrementally more legal for all uses, states grappling with implementing legislation responding to constituent demand for cannabis in all its forms have passed various measures restricting cannabinoid content or strains available. As Minnesota and New York become the 22nd and 23rd states to implement medical cannabis laws, both states plan to prohibit smoked cannabis.

There is no scientific basis for such a ban or evidence that alternative methods of ingestion are more effective for a patient. In fact, there is a lot of evidence supporting the use of smoked or vaporized flowers and concentrates as opposed to ingestibles alone. So are New York and Minnesota banning smoked marijuana simply because it doesn’t “look” medical? Perhaps there is a financial explanation.

In New York State, the bill is awaiting the signature of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who has already agreed to sign. A less restrictive version made it through the state legislature but Cuomo refused to sign without certain concessions limiting dispensaries to 20 for the entire state (or one dispensary per million New Yorkers) and bans the smoking of cannabis flowers (marijuana buds). Cuomo has the authority to cancel the program at any time.

– Read the entire article at AlterNet.