Tonawanda News

Columns

January 17, 2014

LEFFLER: Medical marijuana doesn't go far enough

Tonawanda News — Last week Gov. Andrew Cuomo made a lot of headlines with his State of the State Address. Different things stuck with different people, but the one that most caught my eye was the topic of medical marijuana. 

The governor reached into the books to find a law from three decades ago that gave him the ability to — by executive decree — allow as many as 20 hospitals across the state to dispense marijuana to people with certain severe illnesses as an “experimental” research project.

I put “experimental” in quotes just because it’s funny.

According to Cuomo, people with cancer, glaucoma and possibly some other “life-threatening or sense-threatening” conditions could seek to get marijuana through studies based at hospitals yet to be named, with “stringent research protocols and eligibility requirements.”

Cancer and glaucoma are specifically named. Other than that, it’s a craps shoot. What about all the other things that doctors and scientists have said medical marijuana could help with? What about multiple sclerosis, a subject near and dear to my heart? What about epilepsy, Tourette’s, arthritis, asthma, Crohn’s disease, migraines, nausea, eating disorders? What about anxiety or restlessness? What about people who just plain feel better when they smoke a joint?

New York has a reputation for being a wacky liberal state. We’re bluer than blue. But it wasn’t until a few years ago that gay marriage was recognized here. And we’re still trying to figure out legalizing medical marijuana when 19 other states (and the District of Columbia) already have it on the books. There are two states — Colorado and Washington — that have OK’d it just for pleasure.

How can we possibly be behind Colorado and Washington?

I want to applaud Gov. Cuomo for making a first step, assuming that’s really what he is trying to do. I’d like to think that a guy name Cuomo would have a radical liberal agenda to turn us all into pot-smoking, tree-hugging, gay-marrying hippies. But I doubt it.

Text Only
Columns
  • CONFER:

    April 23, 2014

  • DuVall, Eric mug.jpg DUVALL: In defense of the Common Core

    They've become the two dirtiest words in education, but the Common Core is very much worth defending.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • tucker, barb.jpg TUCKER: Bits and pieces from out and about Ever since it was restored and opened, the Hotel @ Lafayette in downtown Buffalo has fascinated me. Last Monday, the Preservation Buffalo Niagara offered a tour of the hotel led by developer Rocco Termini.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug - adamczyk.jpg ADAMCZYK: Kenmore is a village made of bricks Buffalo and surrounding environs have brick buildings galore, often in the process of repurpose. Whole neighborhoods made of brick await development, redevelopment, gentrification, whatever wand will be waved at them to make them function again. Structures here tend not to be razed; they fall down occasionally but typically simply stand and wait.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • leffler, scott.jpg LEFFLER: Justice is blind -- and deaf and dumb I've always been intrigued by the concept of justice. I say concept because it really seems more theoretical to me than practical. One man's justice is another man's nightmare.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: Don't go soft on teenage criminals

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • DuVall, Eric mug.jpg For Sabres, more suffering is on tap

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • tucker, barb.jpg TUCKER: Taking down trees 'disheartening' Several readers have questioned the City of Tonawanda's tree removal program. An email to Jenna Koch, who represents the third ward and checks into any query on the city, explained the program.


    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug - adamczyk.jpg [Duplicate] ADAMCZYK: Letterman was on my side The announcement that Mr. Letterman is retiring from his groundbreaking television program, sometime in 2015, is already old news, but it gives opportunity to ponder a few truisms about history and modern life.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Leffler Mug 041114 [Duplicate] LEFFLER: 'Need to know' a double-edged sword Inquisitive doesn't begin to describe me. I must know everything. About everything. I hate being in the dark. I guess that's what makes my career choice so very obvious. I think "must know everything" is at the top of most journalists' trait lists.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo