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Arkansas would limit medical marijuana to “intractable” pain, bans home grow near dispensaries | The NORML Stash Blog

I am the producer of The NORML Network, the host of the NORML SHOW LIVE and The NORML Stash Blog, and NORML's Outreach Coordinator. I'm married, live in Portland, Oregon, and I am a registered medical marijuana caregiver in this state. I've worked days as an IT geek and nights as a professional musician. Previously, I have been the host of my own political talk radio show on satellite radio. I've been the High Times "Freedom Fighter of the Month" and I travel across the country to educate people on marijuana reform. I've dedicated my life to bringing an end to adult marijuana prohibition and re-legalizing cannabis hemp, and I'm honored to be chosen by NORML to give voice to the Marijuana Nation and to speak for those who can't speak up.

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9 responses to “Arkansas would limit medical marijuana to “intractable” pain, bans home grow near dispensaries”

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  2. Mike

    Having confirmed peripheral neuropathy for 5 years, my circumstance somehow does not require me to have a Primary Care Physician (PCP). Apparently though I will have to have one according to these new initiative guidelines – despite the reality that I am unlikely to be able to afford one, let alone one who would recommend MMJ as they overall prefer pharmacueticals. Have used prescribed medications that are supposed to help but do absolutely nothing for the pain, and only knock me out and damage my organs.
    Much as I want this to work for me, I find my circumstance & the general attitudes predicted will prevent me from using this pain therapy to my benefit, though even allowing I am within the range of ‘in-need’ individuals, and being clearly in need of such a therapeutic substance.

  3. gary falkenberg

    in ar. a primary care physican can’t by law prescribe most pain killers

  4. gary falkenberg

    i worked with this group now i’m against them ,it is used for pain more than anything else.nobody has the right to tell me i have to have a doctor cut on me.i have been to a pain clinic very few will give pain pills,in my case its the only choise i have…this bill does not help those in in .but it sure helps the feds watch over you

  5. Joel

    Unless you live in Fayetteville corridor or Little Rock or Hot Springs, this is a very rural state, and most folk are more than 5 miles from anywhere. Anywhere that would have a dispensary. Unless my neighbor decides to open one of course. Maybe I should beat him to it? :-D

  6. Joel

    Finally, some action in my state. Yes – it severely limiting, and that’s infuriating to say the least. I suffer from undiagnosed ptsd from childhood trama (watched my brother’s throat get ripped out by a dog – still can’t actually SEE the blood that was everywhere) that no doctor would believe that results in migraines and tourette’s symptoms causing embarassing twitches (wife – “you’re twitching again, what’s wrong this time”) when my emotions run high. When I had money – and insurance, I tried doctors, only to suffer the wicked side effects of all the migraing meds – about 15, lost count.

    I’ve only lived here a few years but I can tell you – this is the DEEP SOUTH here in LA (Lower Arkansas) and if the Baptists and the Penticostal’s won’t allow booze in my county – or the surrounding counties they’ll never be receptive to MMJ – my personal preferred method of dealing with the shit that’s happened in my life.

    The thing is – the ultra religous groups here all imbibe – just in private. In public it would be forbiden – and tattled on to their preachers(or worse – their neighbors). In my town of less than 300 (30 miles from anywhere that would have a dispensery) they all drink, just not here. They drive 30-50 miles to get drunk – then drive home – drunk! Protecting Buba’s right to get drunk and drive home is a time honored tradition here and the good ol boys all know who to let go – even helping them get home safe after the accident.

    So I for one am happy to see this pushed forward – even if it’s limited in scope. It will help educate those too skeered to check it out for themselves. If they know someone – or even a friend of a friend who is toking for pain relief – that isn’t all freeking reefer madness all over the place, they may begin to ask if this reefer madness wasn’t all just a big lie – like their precious prohibition was – and still is in many counties. They know it was a bald faced lie – maybe Marijuana propaganda was as well?

    Either way I’ll still be toking along – secretly or not. At least if it passed I’d be able to grow a little for myself – instead of having to help support the cartels with money that ultimatly spills inocent blood.

  7. David Steece


    I’m an Arkansas resident, and while I definitely appreciate your critical perspective, there are a number of concerns that I feel are being unfairly addressed here, the most important of which is your characterization of the AMM’s qualifying conditions.

    You rightly question the validity of using intractable pain as THE universal qualification, but unfortunately you failed to fully quote the pertinent subsection.

    It deals with defining the temr “qualifying medical condition” that’s used throughout the initiative. In doing so, “intractable pain” is merely one of numerous qualifying conditions, including:

    “Cancer, Glaucoma, positive status for Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (HIV/AIDS), Hepatitis C, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Tourette’s Disease, Crohn’s Disease, ulcerative colitis, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Fibromyalgia, agitation of Alzheimer’s Disease or the treatment of these conditions… A chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or its treatment that produces one or more of the following: cachexia or Wasting Syndrome; PERIPHERAL NEUROPATHY [my emphasis]…

    then they mention intractable pain and the definition you quoted in your piece, and then, it’s followed by

    “severe nausea; seizures, including those characteristic of Epilepsy; or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of Multiple Sclerosis;

    (iii) Any other medical condition or its treatment approved by The Department as provided for in section 104(e).”

    So, you see, your rigorous deconstruction of the hoops and hurdles a neuropathic pain sufferer would have to navigate is built on faulty assumptions.

    Neuropathic pain, regardless of previous treatment plans, will most certainly be covered.

  8. Nick

    After reading this, I am assuming the MPP had their hands in this, based on the details which are similar to their other proposals which passed in AZ and DE ( now cancelled) and are pending in other states. More dispensary monopoly proposals, well atleast patients and caregivers can cultivate unlike DE which would have been good since now they have nothing and AZ which will outlaw it once the monopoly of dispensaries opens throughout the state. I wish the MPP would fight for the right for all patients/caregivers to cultivate and not be forced to purchase and people suffering in pain to not have to go through such horrendous hurdles. Also couldnt this whole tracking system their pushing potentially be used against people later?

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