CBD-only Bills spark activist backlash
Kentucky and South Carolina today joined Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Utah* in pressing medical marijuana bills that only legalize marijuana plants high in cannabidiol (CBD) and low in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive constituent of marijuana.
Legislators in these states explain that even a strictly regulated medical marijuana bill can’t get a hearing in their state capitol, but legalizing a medicine that doesn’t get people high might have a shot of passing. Now, a growing chorus of medical marijuana advocates is rising to protest these bills.
In a post explaining that high-CBD cannabis legislation will do more harm than good, John Malanca of the United Patients Group writes, “As great as it is to see support for this valuable medication come from unexpected places (Utah?!), let’s not forget that high-CBD cannabis is not the only kind that helps sick children. And children with other diseases — especially cancer — need THC.”
Mike Hyde, father of the late Cash Hyde, a young boy who fought brain cancer with the help of cannabis oil, explained, “The new cannabis legislation will not allow the kind of cannabis that helped Cash Hyde; its definition of ‘good’ medical cannabis is too narrow.”
Marijuana activist Vanessa Waltz goes further in her post “Why No Parent Should Support CBD-only Legislation.” She explains that parents who’ve been treating their children’s epilepsy found that “CBD-rich extracts alone are unlikely to provide adequate seizure control without THC supplementation.”
Waltz’s piece quotes Renee Petro, whose son Branden has a form of pediatric epilepsy. At first Petro was lobbying for CBD-only legislation until she learned of the great variance in CBD:THC ratios needed for different patients. She also realizes that epilepsy is only one childhood disease cannabis can help. “I have a friend whose child has an auto-immune disease. He needs THC,” Petro says. “How could I look my friend in the eye and say sorry, you’re out of luck, my kid’s more important than your kid?”