Cannabis is Medicine

Cannabis is one of humanity’s oldest medicines. From being first documented in ancient China, to be in foundational medical texts in the Middle East, and finally ending up in the US Phramacopeia, humanity has found cannabis to help with a variety of ailments.

Prohibition was never based on science. It was a racist attack from a man looking to demonize a new substance after alcohol prohibition ended. What prohibition was extremely effective at doing was wiping out almost all history about the medical use of cannabis. In doing so, they were able to spin a narrative that cannabis is a thrill-seeking drug with absolutely no positive qualities and all the negatives they could conjure up.

Up until the 1942 edition, cannabis was included in the US Phramacopeia. The USP is the gold standard for drug formulations and preparations in the United States. The USP included a number of cannabis formulations, and even uses.

Cannabis was only removed from the 12th edition after the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act when the government, not medical officials, decided cannabis had no medical properties. The AMA, at the time, was opposed to the Tax Act as it would be an attack on doctors and pharmacists.

It was not until the last 30 years where Marijuana was able to regain its medical status. From the infamous medical marijuana case to treat glaucoma to the current 33 states that have medical marijuana programs, we as a society are rediscovering the many uses of this amazing plant.

Day long Trippin’

I don’t get much time to myself. Between kids activities, volunteering, working, and managing my house, my time is usually spoken for before I have a say. So when an opportunity presents it self, I make the most out of it.

This was the second time my wife went away for the night and my mother-in-law took the kids overnight. I made sure my house was clean, snacks were ready, and I had a clear plan for what I wanted to do for the evening. I didn’t want to go to heavy too fast with cannabis; my previous day-long experience made me realize a slow approach was necessary.

I started the adventure with a high-CBD low-THC strain of C-5 hemp. The C-5 had 2.5% THCa and 0.29% THC which I have previously reviewed here.

I took the time to relax and play some video games. It was a calming time getting ready for the craziness of later. After a few hours of smoking and getting ready, I set myself out(taking an Uber) to grab some dinner at a local Szechuan restaurant. Before doing so, I switched to a much higher THC cannabis to begin the true adventure of the night.

My uber driver was nuts, started talking about flat-earth conspiracy theories and stopping at yield signs. It was nice to finally reach the restaurant where it was not very busy. I ordered my two favorite items; fried pot stickers and chicken in garlic sauce.

After finishing my meal I headed to a quiet and peaceful home. Taking out the bong I was ready to put this trip into overdrive. I had already set up my guitar rig so I was ready to rock out hard for a bit. Hitting the bong with some higher-THC cannabis really started to his the spot.

I cranked the amp and rocked out for awhile before getting ready to clean stuff up and relax the rest of the evening. By this point I also started drinking some bourbon, but not too much. After packing the guitar rig away it was time to settle into a calmer period. I turned on the TV and zoned out while watching episodes of Star Trek: TNG. During this time I also started putting some kief on the cannabis in the bong. Eventually, it was time to go to bed.

Reflecting back, the experience was very pleasant and what I had planned on. The gradual increase of THC % in the cannabis I smoked throughout the day didn’t leave me in a position of being too high or getting too tired early on. The experiment was a joyous success and one I hope to repeat in the future.

Cannabis Potency Fears – Prohib fallacy

Prohibitionists have been repeating many of the same talking points about cannabis since the 30s, almost to the point where they are a broken record people have stopped listening to. One that has been used increasingly is that today’s cannabis is not your <insert previous generation here>’s cannabis due to the higher THC content. Not only is the data they use to support this far from accurate, they also ignore the majority of cannabis history and continue saying it with “we really mean it this time.”

Dana Larson has an excellent thread on Twitter breaking down why this talking point is so absurd and not ground in fact. Looking at the claims in the past, this has been nothing but fearmongering. Not only are these claims inconsistent and show a lack of actual scientific evidence, they also ignore the primacy consumption methods of cannabis throughout the ages until we managed to produce flowers that had the higher THC by growing, as covered in my previous post on cannabis history. Hashish, tinctures, resin, oil, and bhang have been used by people for ages to consume cannabis and all have a much higher THC % than normal flower.

There are two major issues with any reports on cannabis potency prior to the mid-2000s; the source of the plant material and the testing method. As detailed in this article in The Atlantic, the issues raised bring into question the results of the testing

First, the cannabis tested was only from seized cannabis which was sent to the DEA. This cannabis could be from any grower or even just what was found in the wild. So from these unknown and limited sources, the varying quality of the cannabis is apparent. Additionally, there is no knowledge of how old the cannabis was or how long it sat prior to testing; the THC in cannabis will degrade into CBN over time. With all these factors, they’re basically just throwing darts blind by making several assumptions about cannabis since the 70s.

The second issue is the testing method. Prior to the mid-2000s, THC was tested by a process calls gas chromatography. This process required the cannabis plant material to be heated up in order to approximate the cannabinoid composition. Since the plant material was heated, the chemical composition will change. This may cause the delta-9 content to change as it might burn off during this process.

With all the above factors, it is extremely fair to be skeptical of any claims that cannabis is “nuclear strength” compared to that of the 60s and 70s. Yes, our growing methods have improved the quality of cannabis and THC content, but I’m willing to bet “top-shelf” cannabis has existed for far longer than the prohibitionists want us to believe.