Given that it's nearly 11:00 Pacific Time, and most of you are already in bed and might be reading this tomorrow morning, let's just surf around tonight.
First of all, did you know that the FDA recently approved the use of Oxycontin for patients aged 11 to 16? Unless you've been living under a rock, and that's perfectly acceptable given what's going on in this crazy old world, oxycontin is a long-release painkiller that acts upon the brain like heroin. Here's the statement, reported by NBC news:
Dr. Sharon Hertz, director of new anesthesia, analgesia and addiction products for the FDA, said studies by Purdue Pharma of Stamford, Connecticut, which manufactures the drug, "supported a new pediatric indication for OxyContin in patients 11 to 16 years old and provided prescribers with helpful information about the use of OxyContin in pediatric patients.
Cue Mrs. Braddock's laugh.
Well, you know where this is going, right? I'm not going to put down anyone who wants to alleviate the suffering of a child in pain, but reeeeeeeeely? Raaaaaaaaaaahly?
As you know, my tiny little mother mind™ has been working overtime with countless other minds, far greater than my own, trying to lobby and persuade The Powers That Be that the efficacy of Charlotte's Web, of cannabis, of medical marijuana, etc. is far stronger than anecdote and certainly not attributable to the placebo effect, that it's a plant that's been used for thousands of years, that there are studies -- oh you know what I'm saying. But hey, what do we know? What do they know?
Yesterday, I visited a prominent orthopedist in Beverly Hills, a young and handsome doctor who probably replaces the knees, shoulders and various body parts of a plethora of celebrities given the location of his office. Last week I developed a bum knee overnight, was driven, quite literally, nearly to my knees one afternoon with a stabbing, horrific pain, a sort of grim reminder that yes, Elizabeth, you are turning 52 years old on August 27th and have taken for granted your solid southern Italian peasant ancestry and were over-confident that these strong genes were somehow going to protect you from the vagaries of age. To make a long story short, my right knee has a touch of The Arthritis, but not enough to warrant any sort of treatment, which given that it'd be one of those gigantic steroid shots that I understand work but that actually spark up the primitive part of my brain that recalls injecting high dosage ones into my daughter's baby legs two decades ago -- I declined. I did ask the good doctor, though, about cannabis and its anti-inflammatory effects and if he'd heard about any of that. He gave a short, impatient laugh, waxed on a bit about how the claims that it cures everything! couldn't be taken seriously and that there wasn't any research, yadda, yadda, yadda.
The weird thing is that this headline:
FDA Approves OxyContin for Children as Young as 11
(read the whole article here) just doesn't surprise many of us and turns our already cynical and tiny little mother minds™ into tiny, little obdurate bricks. Show me the studies -- double-blind, placebo controlled, long-term studies of children.
Let's catch another wave, shall we?
Back on the ranch -- the marijuana ranch, that is -- I got into a little sparring with the self-described admins of a group on Facebook called Pediatric Cannabis Therapy. These admins (and really, why do we have to shorten the word adminstrators to admins?) decided that discussions about Charlotte's Web Hemp Oil (CWHO) and the Realm of Caring (ROC) are no longer allowed. I wish I could quote the rest of the message that they posted, but that wouldn't be ethical for a closed Facebook group. Suffice it to say that it was riddled with not just grammatical errors (which, admittedly, drive this tiny, little mother mind™ batty) but vindictive statements and lies pitting advocates of CBD legislation against those who hope for whole plant legislation. First of all, these two groups need not be mutually exclusive, but according to Pediatric Cannabis Therapy's new rules, they are. The amount of work that Paige Figi, the Stanley Brothers, Heather Barnes Jackson and a virtual army of volunteers in nearly every single state in this country has done in a a very short amount of time -- to help sick children get access to medicine -- is nothing short of astounding and admirable. CBD-only laws are not perfect ones, and most of us believe that they are but tiny steps toward a larger awareness of this plant's many benefits. It's been more than 80 years since marijuana was basically forced underground for political and economic reasons, and during the last sixteen months, enormous progress has been made by pretty desperate women and men whose children's lives are at stake.That being said, members of the Pediatric Cannabis Therapy group were warned not to discuss Charlotte's Web by name or they'd be asked to leave the group. Insults flew for a bit and while I dropped in here and there (you know, surfing the waves, trying to stay cool, look cool), I finally unjoined the group. The crazy talk has happened before, and I just can't be bothered with it anymore. While perhaps boring to those of you who have no interest in The Marijuana Wars, today I wanted to suggest that those of you who do have an interest should probably avoid the Pediatric Cannabis Therapy Group for anything but the lowest form of entertainment -- a sort of Monty Pythonesque Office of Arguments:
I will say that many hundreds of decent people exchange valuable information there in spite of those pesky admins destroying the synergy (another ridiculous 21st century word that they didn't use but that bugs me so much I thought I'd throw it in there with the dirty bathwater), so if you decide to stay in the group or choose to join the group, I advise you to steer clear of The Admin Who Is Not a Beach Boy or certainly don't talk directly about The Product That Cannot Be Named.
After that shredding, I'm prone out.