Survey: Military Vets Strongly Support Medical Cannabis Access

oil_bottlesMore than two in three military veterans say that medical cannabis should be legal, and 75 percent believe that VA physicians should be able to recommend marijuana therapy to eligible patients, according to the results of the 7th annual membership survey of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of American (IAVA).

Sixty-eight percent of respondents said they “support the legalization of medical marijuana in their state.” Only 20 percent oppose legalizing medical cannabis access.

Seventy-five percent of veterans “believe the VA should allow medical marijuana as a treatment option where warranted.” Fourteen percent of respondents disagreed.

Founded in 2004, the IAVA states that it is “the leading post-9/11 veteran empowerment organization with the most diverse and rapidly growing membership in America.”

In May, majorities in both the US House and Senate voted to include language in the 2017 Military Construction, Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies Appropriations bill to permit VA doctors to recommend cannabis therapy. However, Republicans sitting on the House Appropriations Committee decided in June to remove the language from the bill during a concurrence vote.

32 thoughts

  1. Yep, the democrats changed the “language” of the bill, so the committee removed it from the bill. If it would have gone through as written, it would not have been available to vets unless they give up their second amendment right to own a gun. Don’t blame it on the Republicans, it all boils down to an attempt at gun control.

    [Paul Armentano responds: False. The language expanding veterans access was approved by both chambers and therefore should have appeared in the final concurrent version of the bill. It was removed at the 11th hour by Republican leadership. Further, the restriction regarding second amendment rights is an existing federal prohibition that dates back several decades restricting gun ownership. It is Sect. 922(g) of the federal criminal code (from the 1968 federal Gun Control Act), which says that anyone “who is an unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance” is prohibited from possessing or receiving firearms or ammunition]

  2. A couple of months ago I read an article saying the DEA is planing to reschedule marijuana , now I’m seeing articles saying this is not true, what is the real truth?

    [Paul Armentano responds: The DEA issued a letter this past spring stating that they will take action on a pair of rescheduling petitions by the close of the first half of this year. The petitions were filed in 2009 and 2011. They have missed this deadline and have yet to make any formal recommendations. NORML supports descheduling cannabis, not rescheduling it, as we articulate here: http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/uncategorized/283710-time-to-remove-marijuana-from-the-controlled-substances-act.%5D

  3. Being a military vet myself, The USMC back in the 1970’s, there is zero doubt in my mind that marijuana has been extremely helpful to me. Thousands of us have stated such. Thousands of doctors agree. Why isn’t this enough to convince the prohibitionists of the world? These politicians that claim to care for veterans but continue to support the criminalization of cannabis should be thrown out of office for their stupidity.

  4. Exactly why NOBODY should vote for a republican…voting democrat for the majority will continue cannabis reform. voting republican will mean more of the same prohibition. Now is the time for change….don’t vote republican.

  5. If someone in NORML can send this info along to Trump’s campaign staff, I wonder what their response would be given Trump’s support of veterans?

  6. Veterans deserve the same health-care options as our civilian counterparts. Passage of this bill will begin the process of allowing veterans to discuss the risks and benefits of medical cannabis with their doctors,” said Scott Murphy of Veterans for Safe Access and Compassionate Care, as reported by Westword.

  7. Thank you Paul for your educational moderation and editing.
    Bipartisan support passed this bill. A group of Republicants in the House Appropriations Committee killed it in the middle of the night, like minions from the zombie apocalypse. But no joke, these Republicans are trying to say the support our veterans by day while they are killing our veterans at night. A repost of the Republicans on this Committee is due;

    http://appropriations.house.gov/about/members/

    If your Republican Congressman is on this list, call them, expose them for the treasonous murderers they are and vote them out. It’s no different than a Democrat going out to hang Debbie Washmoney Shultz for taking money from private prisons and cancerous diabetic pills to thwart marijuana reform efforts (except the list of Republicans goes on for a while…)

    Please check the NORML Congressional scorecard and support and VOTE for the A-B list!

    http://norml.org/congressional-scorecard

    1. You are absolutely right. it is completely ridiculous for the government to send us out to fight, risking our lives, and then when we come back to not let us grow ourselves a plant that we know to be helpful.

      Does anyone out there know how many veterans are currently locked up in jail or prison because of marijuana laws.

  8. Being a Viet Nam veteran, i suffer from a lot of maladies, but Marijuana helps me cope in so many ways. I just hate to be so secretive about it. Allow Veterans to have this well deserved medicine.

    1. I wonder how many veterans, if they could go back in time knowing what they know now (that the Govt would consider them criminals for using cannabis to treat themselves), would still volunteer to serve and risk their lives.

      When I served, I honestly (but wrongly) believed that we had a Govt that truly cared about it’s servicemen and women and would act to protect them.

      What we actually seem to have is a Govt that treats us as criminals for making the choice to medicate (or recreate safely) with cannabis. A Govt that ignore the cries of the majority of Americans to end prohibition in favor of $$$ (in many cases).

      We have a POTUS that used cannabis recreationally himself and yet has done little to nothing to end the idiotic harmful prohibition of it. We all thought he was 100% pro-legalization before we elected him to that office. Seeing him do a 180 on that subject once elected was totally demoralizing and depressing. I lost almost all of my respect for him and the office he holds because of it.

  9. It should be legalized in all states and for everyone…it’s a valuable medicine for many people why should the vets be left out.. Trump said he’ll leave it up to the states. I guess we’ll find out when he become the President

  10. In this so-called democracy the will of the people is not reflected in the actions of the government. Nationwide 80 to 90 percent of people are for medical marijuana and 50 to 60 percent are for outright legalization. while the government,reflecting the will of its ruling class owners and handlers follows the orders of the money. William Vought. Mm noWhetherruling class owners and handlers

  11. While we struggle just to get medical cannabis access to our veterans, propaganda is already spreading about access to medibles to children in Colorado as some kind of “poison.”
    I just heard the nonsense report from NPR’s “Here and Now” interviewing Dr. Wang, Professor of Toxicology at the University of Colorado and a director at Children’s Hospital stating a “spike” in calls to poison control for children due to marijuana ingestion.
    Usually I roll my eyes at “spikes” in statistics that have only recently been studied so… How would there be anything BUT a spike in data that has never been funded for research before? So let’s get that fact out of the way.
    But worse, we can’t let anyone get away with calling marijuana “poisonous” or “toxic.” This is propaganda and the last stand of lies from prohibitionists.
    In order to be classified as “toxic” or “poisonous” let’s look at the definitions;

    poisonous.
    “the dumping of toxic waste”
    synonyms: poisonous, virulent, noxious, deadly, dangerous, harmful, injurious, pernicious
    “toxic houseplants”

    Ok, but marijuana isn’t deadly. No one has ever overdosed on cannabinoids or THC in all human history. It’s not physically possible.

    poi·son·ous
    ?poiz(?)n?s/
    adjective
    (of a substance or plant) causing or capable of causing death or illness if taken into the body.
    “poisonous chemicals”
    synonyms: toxic, noxious, deadly, fatal, lethal, mortal, death-dealing
    “a poisonous chemical”

    Ok, once again, marijuana is NOT deadly, Dr. Wang, so you do NOT get to call cannabis “poisonous” or “toxic.” Now go back to your prohibition sponsors and write “cannabis is non-toxic” on the blackboard 1 million times for each of the veterans you help kill with your lies.

  12. Cannabis calms PTSD anxiety and protects brain neurons by increasing brain derived neurotrophic factor BDNF and removes Alzheimers plaques and inflammation with our endocannabinoid system. http://www.salk.edu/cannabnoids. My VA physician was very interested. All of us combat veterans need to speak up or nothing will change.

  13. We salute Nurse Practitioner Heather Manus for her work in Arizona to get N.P.s to the homes of veterans where they need treatment to treat PTStress and get off opiate addiction and for coining the phrase PTSGrowth.
    If you are a veteran that needs access to medical marijuana contact;

    http://www.veteransformedicalmarijuana.org

    Also special thanks to Dr Sue Sisley who uses thirty years of research in PTSD to conference with our governors and Congressman and promote veteran access to NPs with medical marijuana. I still can’t believe she got FDA approval. To support her research and legislative efforts contact;

    http://www.maps.org/research/mmj/marijuana-us

    1. Julian, I am a 20 + year veteran. Thank you so much for your post, very informative. My VA Disibility appeal lasted 10 1/2 years for unemployability. My family told me to give it up. I wrote several veteran org’s and senators, congressmen about the walls all veterans are up against. budget cuts for active/reserve/veterans. And also about the united States Federal Budget, ect…which pissed money away from programs related to active/reserve/veterans families. Every letter I wrote, I was also writing for our veterans who no longer have the physical or mental capacity to do so. This was my main driving wheel. It has been said one letter from a constitute represents the words of one thousand. I think we all need to send more letters to our failing reps about legalasation. The only way marijuana will kill you is if 20 kilos were dropped from 20 feet and landed on your head breaking your neck. Hell,,,,, Table salt and sugar kill thousands each year. one last thing on my Brain tonight. I wish everybody in the United states would start scattering their seeds, everywhere on city, state federal property. It will have to be legalized after a couple of years, governments will not have the funds to eradicate it all. Please, please pass along these thoughts to others…

  14. My VA Dr. is fine with me smoking. Only wish our dispensaries would carry eatables. My PTSD seems to mellow out. I won’t take pills from the VA. The VA forgets that most of us are alcoholics and will drink along with our drugs. A killer combo.. veterans committing suicide. Give us a break and legalize the herb.

  15. It is time to say goodbye to the Republican Party. They no longer represent american people. They represent corporate greed and cultural intolerance. It is time to say good bye to white privilege, institutionalized theft, and begin anew with forgiveness and tolerance.

  16. I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article and i am hoping the same best work from you in the future as well.

  17. Our DEA allowed Opiates to be put on the market. Opiates kill 100,000 people per year. He many of us American s is the Government allowed to kill before they are held accountable? La Buscador..

  18. I am a Vet living in the religiously controlled state of Utah. If there is a god he’s living 40 miles away in Colorado.

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