Medical Marijuana Research Update: October 2004

MAPS and MPP filed our amicus curiae brief today in the US Supreme Court in the Ashcroft v. Raich medical marijuana case. The brief describes the political obstruction of MAPS’ efforts to conduct FDA-approved medical marijuana research. The goal of the brief is to educate the Supreme Court judges so that they don’t rule against medical marijuana patients under the false assumption that the FDA drug development approach is a viable alternative to state medical marijuana initiatives and legislative actions. As long as the obstruction of MAPS’ medical marijuana research efforts continues, the only way that patients can obtain legal access to the medical use of marijuana is through the decision of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which decided that there was no interstate commerce involved when patients or caregivers grow marijuana for patients’ personal medical use. That decision prohibited the federal authorities (DEA) from enforcing the Controlled Substances Act prohibitions against the use of marijuana, which the 9th Circuit judges declared unconstitutional when applied against patients or caregivers growing marijuana in states that had approved such use. MAPS and MPP’s brief transforms our failure to obtain the necessary permissions and supply of marijuana for MAPS’ research efforts into a weapon against the forces of repression (DEA and the Drug Czar ).