Denver protest on medical pot
December 14, 2005
Peter Marcus, Denver Daily NewsHolding signs and chanting, “Feds give back meds,” a group of medical marijuana patients and activists gathered in front of the Byron White U.S. Courthouse yesterday demanding an end to government interference concerning medical marijuana. The protest was in response to raids conducted by federal agents Monday in which 13 medical cannabis facilities in San Diego were searched and shut down.
As stated on fliers passed out during yesterdays rally, “The DEA chose scare tactics to frighten patients and their caregivers from implementing California state law.”
Dr. Robert J. Melamede, considered to be an expert on marijuana’s medicinal properties, spoke of marijuana’s healing ability at the rally, and in a subsequent phone conversation.
“Marijuana mimics how the body works,” he said. “As you live and breath your body makes free radicals viewed as biochemical friction. Endocannabinoids (the property released from marijuana) seems to reduce that friction.”
An example that Melamede gave was in relation to pain and other effects caused by cancer.
“Often times, people can’t sleep from cancer, endocannabinoids help you sleep. You may not be eating from cancer, endocannabinoids help you eat. If you’re in pain, it’ll help with the pain, and even more profoundly, it also helps kill certain cancers,” he said. “Also, it has effects on mood, if you’re dying of cancer and feeling good, but the government says it’s a crime, that’s ludicrous.”
Brian Vicente, director of Sensible Colorado, organized the rally.
“We’re asking the Feds to stop harassing medical marijuana patients,” he said.
Participants held signs that read, “safe access now,” and “we the people want marijuana legalized,” to name a couple. Some wore T-shirts that said, “Stop busting cancer patients.”
Melamede also questioned whether the federal government actually considers the American vote.
“We the people have voted to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes,” he said. “What the Feds don’t understand is that our vote means something.”