Two bills have been introduced to protect consumer access to cannabidiol (CBD). We have a growing opioid painkiller epidemic in this country—one that has followed the scandal of so many heart-health-destroying or cancer-causing pain relievers being approved by the FDA. There is a natural alternative, and of course the government is intent on banning it for no reason at all—other than to clear the way for a blockbuster new drug. Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA) has introduced two bills, the Legitimate Use of Medical Marijuana Act (HR 714) and the Compassionate Access Act (HR 715), both aimed at removing federal obstacles that prevent patient access to CBD, a medicinal extract of the marijuana plant. These bills follow a recent move by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) that classified marijuana and all its extracts as Schedule I controlled substances—a category that includes heroin, LSD, mescaline, and MDMA. Note that none of the CBD extracts contains significant amounts of the psychoactive chemical in marijuana—only the non-psychoactive painkilling chemicals. Although “CBD” or “cannibinoids” are not mentioned in the Controlled Substances Act (CSA)—the legislation that the DEA must follow in creating rules related to controlled substances—the agency nonetheless lumps CBD and all other constituents of the plant into the definition of “marijuana.”
In the United States today, the federal government controls which substances can be used to treat diseases, and which ones cannot. In general, only pharmaceutical drugs which can be patented are allowed. In many cases, either the FDA decides certain health claims about natural substances are invalid and bans it, or the DEA claims certain plants, such as cannabis, are illegal, jeopardizing both use and research. The FDA’s best and most high paying customers are in the pharmaceutical business, which pays the FDA over $2 million per licensing fee to accept its own testing proving efficacy and safety. The FDA only reviews the pharmaceutical industry’s testing. But several independent researchers have determined most pharmaceutical tests are at best not quite right and sometimes totally fraudulent. In other words, the FDA protects the pharmaceutical industry, not its customers.
As news about the disease-fighting abilities of medical cannabis (or medical marijuana) become more known, making cannabis a legitimate healing product rather than just a recreational drug, many consumers are beginning to research how one can avail of these curative natural medicines, and where to go to find them. Almost like dominoes falling against each other beginning with California, states have adopted medical marijuana laws to allow qualified patients access to home grown and locally dispensed cannabis products. California, Oregon, Washington State, and Colorado are the most well known. There are 19 other states plus the District of Columbia, bringing the total to 24 independent medical cannabis regions in the United States. There are a few additional states that allow cannabis without THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the compound that has psychoactive effects. The result is an oil or tincture that produces medicinal effects without the "high." These formulas have shown to be effective for children who suffer chronic epileptic seizures, for example. The CBD (cannabidiol) strain is initially what impressed CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta to reverse his negative stand on medical marijuana applications and declare his positive opinion openly on TV, endorsing medical cannabis.