It is obvious that Utahns should be allowed access to a marijuana-derived medicine to limit epileptic seizures. One need only hear the stories about heroic parents to know this is not about dodging drug laws.
That is not to say the science has been proven. It's simply that the science should be allowed to go forward, including in Utah. While some of the medical marijuana industry may indeed be a smokescreen for access to recreational pot, it is impossible to dismiss the real research that has produced promising results. This past weekend Salt Lake Tribune reporter Kirsten Stewart detailed results on children in Colorado whose seizures have not been controlled by more widely prescribed pharmaceuticals. And while there is evidence of success in many young patients, there has been no evidence of harm.
The research focuses on cannabis-derived products that are higher in cannabidiol, which helps control seizures and pain, and lower in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which produces marijuana's high. We're talking about THC levels around the level of hemp rope. This research has been limited by the U.S. government's classification of marijuana as a Schedule 1 narcotic with no medicinal value. And access to the medicine has been limited by the fact that only 20 states have passed laws to allow medicinal marijuana use.