Medical marijuana bill introduced in Oklahoma legislature

From NORML.ORG:

Support Medical Marijuana in Oklahoma!

Dear NORML Supporter:

NORML is pleased to announce that Senate Bill 875, an act to establish a legislative task force to study and make recommendations regarding the medical use of marijuana, has been introduced in the Oklahoma legislature and referred to the Senate Health and Human Resources Committee. (Read the full text of the bill: http://webserver1.lsb.state.ok.us/WebBillStatus/main.html.)

Despite continued political debates regarding the legality of medicinal marijuana, clinical investigations of the therapeutic use of cannabis and its constituents are now more prevalent than at any time in history. A quick visit to the National Library of Medicine website quantifies this fact. A keyword search using the terms “cannabinoids, 1996” reveals just 258 scientific journal articles published on the subject for that year. Perform this same search for the year 2006, and you will find close to 1,000. Passage of SB 875 will mandate the legislature to perform an objective review of this evidence and make recommendations for future legislative action.

Please take two minutes of your time today to contact your Senator as well as the members of Senate Health and Human Resources Committee and urge them to stand up for the rights of Oklahoma patients. Also, please take special note to thank Senator Johnson, a member of the Senate Health and Human Resources Committee, who is the primary author for Senate Bill 875. For your convenience, Committee member contact information, Oklahoma NORML Director Norma Sapp’s contact information, and a pre-written letter have been included below.

Senator Todd Lamb – Co-Chair
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Rm. 513A
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
(405) 521-5632
lamb@oksenate.gov

Senator Andrew Rice – Co-Chair
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Rm. 521
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
(405) 521-5610
rice@oksenate.gov

Senator Patrick Anderson
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Rm. 520
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
(405) 521-5630
anderson@oksenate.gov

Senator Brian Crain
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Rm. 513B
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
(405) 521-5620
crain@oksenate.gov

Senator Constance N. Johnson
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Rm. 534B
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
(405) 521-5531
(405) 521-5580 – Fax

Senator Debbe Leftwich
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Rm. 427A
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
(405) 521-5557
holland@oksenate.gov

Senator Kathleen Wilcoxson
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Rm. 511
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
(405) 521-5618
purinton@oksenate.gov

Senator Jim Wilson
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Rm. 426
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
(405) 521-5574
wilson@oksenate.gov

Norma Sapp/OKNORML
Norman,Ok
405-321-4619
ekco@swbell.net

Sincerely,
Erin Dame
NORML Outreach Coordinator
Erin@norml.org

Dear Senator _______,

I’m writing today to urge your support for Senate Bill 875, which seeks to establish a legislative task force to study and make recommendations regarding the medical use of marijuana.

The use of cannabis as medicine is a public health issue; it should not be part of the war on drugs. According to a national survey of U.S. physicians conducted for the American Society of Addiction Medicine, nearly half of all doctors with opinions on this issue support legalizing marijuana as a medicine. Moreover, some 80 state and national health care organizations, including the American Nurses Association, American Public Health Association and The New England Journal of Medicine, support immediate, legal patient access to medical cannabis.

Despite continued political debates regarding the legality of medicinal marijuana, clinical investigations of the therapeutic use of cannabis and its constituents are now more prevalent than at any time in history. A quick visit to the National Library of Medicine website quantifies this fact. A keyword search using the terms “cannabinoids, 1996” reveals just 258 scientific journal articles published on the subject for that year. Perform this same search for the year 2006, and there are will find close to 1,000.

For example, a recent meta-analysis published in the April 2006 issue of the Journal of Ethnopharamacology identifies more than 70 controlled clinical trials available in the scientific literature investigating the medical safety and efficacy of cannabinoids as therapeutic agents. Results of these patient trials indicate that cannabis and its constituents possess therapeutic utility as antiemetics, appetite stimulants in debilitating diseases, and as analgesic agents, as well as provide symptomatic relief of multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries, Tourette’s syndrome, epilepsy, and glaucoma, among other serious diseases. Passage of SB 875 will mandate the legislature to perform an objective review of this evidence and make recommendations for future legislative action.

Once again, I urge you to support Senate Bill 875.

Sincerely,
Your Name

NORML and the NORML Foundation: 1600 K Street NW, Suite 501, Washington DC, 20006-2832
Tel: (202) 483-5500 • Fax: (202) 483-0057 • Email: norml@norml.org

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