Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Texas MS Patient Wants Safe Marijuana Accessbility

Man with MS pushes for legalization of medical marijuana

09:51 PM CST on Sunday, November 15, 2009

GARLAND - For 22 years, Tim Timmons has fought the pain of multiple

Prescribed medicine couldn't stop the spasms or help him sleep, he said.
Ultimately, Timmons said, relief came in the form of illegal marijuana,
which is why he is now pushing for the drug to be legalized.

While 13 states have legalized medical marijuana, Texas isn't one of
them. Timmons said he wants that to change since he feels like he's been
forced to support organized crime.

"What I do is I have to support black market crime, but they're the ones
forcing me to do it," he said. "I don't want to support organized crime
more than anyone would."

Studies have shown that marijuana can ease muscle spasms and numb pain.

The Texas legislature voted down the last three medical marijuana bills
that would have given doctors the authority to prescribe the drug.

In the past, lawmakers defended the ban on medical marijuana by citing
the American Medical Associations' position on the topic. But, after 72
years, that position may be changing. The AMA announced last Tuesday
that it's reversing its policy of classifying the drug as a Schedule 1
narcotic, stating that the issue needs to be reviewed. The announcement
was in response to a new medical report by the AMA's Council on Science
and Public Health, which detailed various medical benefits.

Many pharmacists and doctors argue that those benefits can be obtained
through legalized drugs that contain the active ingredient in marijuana,

"What they fail to understand is there is THC available in a legal dose
called Marinol," said Donna Barsky, a Plano pharmacist. "It's a
prescription item. All a doctor has to do is write a prescription for

Opponents of medical marijuana say it's healthier because smoking the
drug can pull unhealthy substances into the lungs.

"Marinol just plain doesn't work, or causes worse situations than you
had starting off," Timmons said.

Another medical marijuana bill is expected to be filled in the Texas
legislature in 2011.

E-mail sstoler@wfaa. com

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