The latest veterans group to join the quest to explore the medical benefits of medical marijuana to treat PTSD is the illustrious American Legion. In a letter sent to President Trump, the group asked for a much-needed meeting with the Commander-in-Chief to discuss rescheduling cannabis, so that medical research could discover possible benefits for veterans now being treated with opiates and other narcotics.
The American Legion is among those organizations that exist to honor and give service to those who served in our military. Their number one priority is treating war veterans and if that means lobbying Washington to tear down barriers that could benefit these brave men and women, then that is exactly what they will do.
You Can’t Have Your Cake and Eat It Too
The Director of Media Relations for the American Legion spoke out in an email to The Cannabist online journal. Director Joe Plenzler actually shared portions of the letter to President Trump in this email and what is evident is that the federal government has placed an unfair restriction on further research into the potential medical benefits, which many esteemed medical universities and scientists have found during their own clinical studies.
According to the director, the barriers are brought about on a federal level because cannabis is listed as a Schedule 1 drug which preempts scientific research. The Legion is requesting that the President and Congress take another look at rescheduling this drug so that the barriers to research can be torn down.
On the one hand, the government is calling it a drug with no evident medical benefits, but on the other hand they are preventing further studies to substantiate this summation, one way or the other. According to many veterans’ groups around the nation, the government wants their cake and they want to eat it too.
It is like a Catch 22. Without verifiable, documented evidence supporting one side of the argument or the other, there will be no way of knowing.
Rescheduling Cannabis Will Open the Door for Further Research
The real problem seems to be an archaic understanding of medical marijuana from the days when it was scheduled alongside LSD, heroin, cocaine and even ecstasy, which is one of the newer Schedule 1 drugs to be added to the list of ‘dangers.’
There is ample evidence in the scientific and medical communities that cannabis, although containing psychoactive properties, also contains cannabinoids that have medicinal uses and are not psychoactive. It is these components the American Legion wants further research for, but with the laws the way they currently stand, there is no way for government scientists to legally join ongoing research.
Veterans’ organizations and proponents of legalizing medical marijuana looking to support veterans who suffer from PTSD will be waiting to see if the President grants the Legion an audience and whether or not anything will come of those talks, should they happen. Until then, veterans who could potentially benefit from CBDs are caught up in an endless Catch 22 loop, waiting for someone to stop the merry-go-round.