So What If Pot Can Cure Cancer; That's No Reason For You To Use It

Now this really is a mixed blessing.
On the one hand, I’m thrilled to see that a study documenting the anti-cancer properties of cannabinoids is finally receiving some mainstream media attention.
On the other hand, I’m disappointed that its coverage is limited to a British tabloid that is better known for running anti-pot propaganda like this:

Cannabis killer knifed neighbour 100 times
A mentally ill man driven to violent frenzies by cannabis was sentenced to life yesterday for stabbing a man 100 times.
… Kashmiri, 50, of Tooting, south London, sexually assaulted the woman at her south London home in June, 2006, and returned five nights later to attack her.
… Kashmiri, whose violent episodes are triggered by cannabis, denied murder but admitted manslaughter due to diminished responsibility.

Of course, I’m accustomed to reading “Reefer Madness” in the British press.
But I’m less accustomed to reading “Reefer Madness” when it comes from the mouth of an established medi-pot researcher like Dr. Wai Man Liu.

Cannabis may help the war on cancer
Cannabis could be used to treat many forms of cancer, new research suggests.
The drug contains an ingredient which slows tumour growth and prevents the reproduction of cancer cells, doctors say.
Its effects are seen in all cancers but particularly in those of the lung and brain, and leukaemia, it is claimed.
But scientists warned against smoking the drug, saying the only safe version was that created in the lab.
Researcher Dr Wai Man Liu said: ‘I’m in no way encouraging people to take up smoking the ganja – there would be more harm than good.’
Previous research has shown cannabis-based medicines can help cancer patients as a painkiller, appetite stimulant and in reducing nausea.
The drug has also long been used by multiple sclerosis and arthritis sufferers to reduce pain.
Its medicinal benefits come from the main active ingredient, THC. The latest research, by St George’s University of London, shows that THC can weaken cancer cells to make traditional chemotherapy more effective.
Dr Liu said: ‘It’s another weapon against the armour of cancer. We are quite close but need to jump through certain hoops. I believe it could be used in two to three years.’
Dr Joanna Owens, from Cancer Research UK, said the latest studies were encouraging but needed to be followed up with more trials. She added: ‘Making cancer cells more vulnerable to chemotherapy or radiotherapy is a great concept but it is still early days.’

Having recently lost friends and family members to cancer, including one to leukemia, I can inform Dr. Liu that such a diagnosis — even when treated with standard radiation and chemotherapy — is a death sentence. For Dr. Liu to advise, with a straight face no less, that these patients would do “more harm than good” by smoking cannabis is a disgrace. Not only can cannabis alleviate cancer patients’ nausea and pain, elevate their mood, and increase their appetite, but also — as Dr. Liu’s own data demonstrates — it may help to alleviate the very disease that’s ravaging their bodies. Nevertheless, I suppose that Dr. Liu would rather have these patients shut up and die than expose the political hypocrisy surrounding criminalizing a plant.
Finally, as for Dr. Liu’s idyllic estimate that his pharmaceutically-approved pot-based anti-cancer drugs will be available in “two to three years,” don’t hold your breath (or, if you already have cancer, try not to die in the interim). I’m sure that these investigators made similar proclamations when they documented pot’s anti-cancer properties — in 1975!
Yet here we are 38 years later and the only ‘progress’ we’ve made on this issue is in the wrong direction — having moved from investigating the plant’s anti-cancer potential in animals to cells in vitro in a petri dish! Thank you Dr. Liu; now kindly get out of my sight.

0 thoughts

  1. Mr. Armentano, if only the nation could hear you clearly as I do. I look forward to one day fighting alongside you and the rest of the organization.

  2. Wow… You really seem to be getting irritated. I don’t blame you, for we are heading in the wrong direction, especially in the U.S.
    I hope that the plant can be used sooner than later, for it’s rather pointless to suppress the use of this wonder-plant, and quite possibly wonder-cure!

  3. “You really seem to be getting irritated”
    You’re right. He is irritated. I wish everyone were this irritated. Thousands of people are dying of a disease that could be treated by this drug, and the government won’t recognize the value so they can save face. In other words, their arrogance is litterally killing people. I think everyone has a right to be a little more than irritated. I think we should be outraged at our government. That’s the first step towards change: anger. And this country definitely needs change.

  4. I agree with David. Maybe anger is what people need to get excited about trying to take an active role in achieving progress. I feel proud to be part of a group at NORML that takes such an active and informed role. I call on everyone to send letters as much and often as possible (the pre-written ones from norml are great) to their local and state reps and senators to let them know these issues are of real and grave concern. Don’t feel discouraged if they don’t write back, or even if they disagree. The more they hear from us the better. I again commend Mr. Armentano on his passion and ability to address the issue at hand.

  5. Irritated is an understatement I’m sure. Ive watched countless family members die of cancer, most times fighting in vain as doctors pump them full of medicine trying to slow the spread. If this would have been availible I personally wouldn’t have so many tattoos in honor of my fallen loved ones, they could still be here carrying on a conversation with me. The reluctance of the US government to actually accept the medicinal purposes of the cannibis plant is inane to say the least. They have allowed the use of opiates, for medicinal uses. Why won’t they do the same for cannibis?
    I think this issue needs to hit mainstream airwaves, news, talk radio, newspapers, tv, ect… Maybe if mainstream society seen the medicinal uses of this plant they would change their mind, but with the KGB of a government we have, it will never make the air waves because if it does I’m sure the station or the paper that publishes it will receive hefty fines.

  6. This makes me sick. I HAVE, and am willing to do it again under strict medical supervision, CURED BASAL CELL CARCINOMA,(SKIN CANCER). Basal Cell Carcinoma does not usualy KILL, it is annoying, being as it bleeds a lot, and hurts. I used Cannabis Oil to CURE two lesions on my head, CURE. If anyone knows of an organization willing to supervise me as I CURE other Basal Cell lesions send me an E-Mail

  7. I think Dr Wai Man Liu HAS to say that smoking cannabis will do more harm than good because of his reputation, as well as the reputation of all doctors. Of course, on the side he would probably tell you that he himself smokes but can’t admit it professionally.

  8. I have done a lot of research on this subject as I have a family member with cancer. Take a look at the “Run from the Cure” documentary on YouTube: for a sort of simply overview of the use of thc to cure cancer. If you want to get into more detail, do a google search for “cannabinoids and cancer” to turn up hundreds of scientific articles on the subject.
    I think its crazy that there is a natural remedy that harmlessly treats cancer and its illegal. Ridiculous.

  9. Why is testing the drug on human cells grown in vitro a step BACKWARD from testing on animals? The most reliable way to test if a drug will work on a certain condition in humans is to actually test it on human cells with that condition, whether grown in a laboratory or in vitro. Surely this is a better use of government money than wasting money (not to mention animal lives) on raising lab animals and giving them cancer.

  10. “whether grown in a laboratory or in vitro”
    correction: whether grown in a laboratory or in vivo

  11. On an episode of House from season 2, Dr. House walks into the office of his friend Wilson (an oncologist) who is sitting at his desk rolling joints for a patient. They make a few jokes about their own experiences with marijuana as Wilson tells House to make sure the doors are locked and that no one is coming. This is the kind of tongue-in-cheek imagery I like to see, because it promotes a good attitude towards marijuana while alluding to the frustrating reality MDs are forced to be caught in. I hope one day soon Dr. Wilson will be able to write prescriptions on paper instead of rolling the papers himself.

  12. the pressure is mounting against conventional thought, and i’m on the frontlines to smash it to pieces as well.
    i’ve e-mailed my representatives and contacted all the officials i could through the ‘take action’ section of this site.
    stay up, fam<3

  13. Overall, it seems that Dr. Liu could have been more specific in making such a pivotal statemate. An evaluation of his use of language is similarly revealing. To recap, Dr. Liu condemns “smoking the drug,” yet also advocates lab-based versions [i.e. of “the drug”] as the only “safe version.”
    Now, an alternate interpretation of this statement yields that what Dr. Liu rejects is moreso the consumptive mode of “smoking” itself, rather than the substance in question. Hence, Dr. Liu can remain in advocacy of what he refers to as “the drug.” The use of the term “drug” is also compelling. Constant reference to a handful of plants (i.e. cannibus sativa, et al.) and/or their component parts as “drug” merely reinforces an epistemological framework founded in an Enlightenment-era mode of thinking. The point I wish to make is that while this is one orienting worldview that has yielded tremendous benefits for all, it has also wrought terrible harm and above all, it can no longer claim a position of cultural or epistemic superiority in a post-colonial world.
    At the same time, Dr. Liu’s advocacy of marijuana in such a commodified form (“the drug”) also points to the medical industry’s pointed interest in maintaining a monopoly over potential commercial opportunities that arise from marijuana decriminalization. One of the detriments of this position in the rejection of the “act of smoking” itself is that while Dr. Liu is certainly correct that habitual smoking of any substance is terribly damaging to our bodies, and perhaps in an absolute sense, an “on paper” sense, should be done away with, one cannot as easily “do away with” the cultures that have arisen in conjunction with marijuana use. Indeed, by rightly advancing toward alternate modes of knowing (Enlightenment-based and others) as equal but different, we all stand to gain.

  14. Getting no response from correspondence to lawmakers is very discouraging. It is good to know that there are others who continue to press on. I too vow to continue to try and educate our representatives. We have so much good information we just need to get it into the right hands.

  15. I look forward to the day when I can have a few pot plants growing among my lillies and marigolds. That’s going to be a great day.
    People see pot as a drug issue, but it’s so much more than that. Given its immense healing potential, it’s certainly a health freedom issue. Should I be able to choose how I heal my body? You’d think, but then again, Maryland and Texas have forced vaccination programs. Land of the free…hmm…
    It’s a spiritual issue. If you believe that God (however you define him/her/it/high energy) created the world, then surely God created pot too. Thus, it should be my religious right to choose to use whatever plants God has put upon this earth. Land of the free…hmm…
    It’s a states’ rights issue. This is the scariest one to me. California says medical marijuana is ok, but the feds don’t agree so they raid dispensaries. Isn’t that an obvious and flagrant violation of the Constitution? I seem to remember from law class that states’ rights shall not be infringed upon by the federal government. Land of the free…hmm…
    Big change is coming to this country one way or another. As the old foolish leaders of this generation die off, new young leaders with fresh ideas will replace the old wood. I’m always hoping for a truly free America like the founding fathers envisioned. Peace to everybody! Ok, yup, I’m a hippe (obviously, I would think?)

  16. The phrase ” All politicians are the same” is relevant to any political issue because it derives those problems and scandals from money. All politicians are the same because they like money and how they get their money is not too far off from how drug dealers get their money. I think a large reason why many politicans refuse to make an agreement to legalize marijuana is because many of them are already making money from over inflated prices of the plant. While they’re throwing others in jail . I also think that another controversy to legalizing it is that not enough big time distributors are caught so there still is an open market for distribution out there that our government wants to get majority control of, in any market competitors must be eliminated and not enough of them are. To legalize anything the government has to be in control to regulate who gets it and how much it costs. If they eliminate all other factors and competetors for a market on distributing marijuana then the possibility of allowing distribution can occur. But until then maybe we should just let a fraternity of greedy rich boys figure out what should be done with the legal process, as if our votes for federal and state elections matter anyways.

  17. I’m not sure how much good this will do, but the Republican party has a site up where people can leave messages about what is important to them.
    Not a whole lot of comments about the drug war, but I left a message. I have also emailed my local representatives in Kansas. I think the more complaints/comments they get regarding this will signal there are many more out there that feel the same way.

  18. It is God’s medicine – What ever happen to “In God We Trust” ?
    What does the USA say to all the people that lost loves ones that suffered when they did not have to.
    Americans just need to become smarter and take their country back
    Big Pharma – who is kidding who? There are people out here that wake up in pain daily.
    I do believe being a good American does not include being a guiny pig for big pharma – lets talk about fair trade laws – if marijuana was legal, it would be marketed as “The Miracle drug” this would put a pinch in big pharmas profits.
    God Bless America

  19. America needs another revolutionary war, yet everyone’s too drunk and pill addict brainwashed. WAKE up America, we are not FREE, we haven’t been FREE for a long fucking time!

  20. I have been dealing with my mothers’ cancer since late 2007. U have been using cannabis to help her appetite, nausea, releif. Unfortunately, after surgery and some chemo it has come back with a vengenence. I am reaching out to all of you today because I have done some research on many options for her(will know more tomorrow after her appointment with the oncologist).In my research I had found about Rick Simpson, Phoeinix tears, I can’t seem to get in contact with but also to wanted to find a non objective party to confirm said cure for cancer.
    I was wondering if anybody knows anyone who has used this alternative let me know.I am asking from the bottom of my heart.Time is precious and short.
    Please help!
    Peace Be with You
    Ray DiPasquale
    [Editor’s note: While cannabis may well be helpful for folks with cancer, or, as emerging science is indicating, cannabis may be helpful in preventing some forms of cannabis. But, overall, there is yet to be the necessary peer-reviewed scientific papers proving that cannabis “cures” cancer. Best to your Mom and you during this time.]

  21. Doesn’t anyone get it? The powers that be don’t want to cure any diseases. They know the planet is way overpopulated already and making people live longer doesn’t help fix that. They already have programs in place to exterminate masses of us as it is. Doubt me Google FEMA concentration camps.Cancer is terrible and i feel for anyone who suffers with any disease but the drug war is really a moot point when you consider what else the Governments of the world are planning.

  22. just think guys, if all the baby boomers die they won,t have to pay our pensions.government knows this they don,t want us to live

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