When Josh Phillips of Salmon, Idaho (population 3,300) was 10 years old, doctors diagnosed him with a type of epilepsy that causes severe seizures. But that didn’t stop Josh from becoming a champion wrestler in high school.
Two years ago, on the way home from a wrestling match with the Salmon High team, Josh was rushed to the ER when he suffered the worst seizure of his life.
“We thought we were going to lose him,” Jason Bruce, the team’s coach, told Reason.com.
Now 19, Josh’s future health depends on how the state government chooses to treat him. If Josh was living in any state contiguous to Idaho, including Wyoming or Utah, he could get CBD oil treatment, which he and his family believe would best relieve his suffering. But, because he lives in Idaho, such treatment is considered a crime.
Josh has tried more than a dozen different medications and even underwent brain surgery, but the seizures continue and are preventing him from going to college, moving out of his parents’ house or driving a car.
In Idaho, a bill to allow people like Josh Phillips to access CBD oil was passed by the state legislature in 2015, only to be defeated by a group of powerful special interests—including cops, prosecutors and pharmaceutical companies—with direct access to policy makers in Boise, the state capital.
Emails obtained by Reason reveal a behind-the-scenes effort organized by the state’s Office of Drug Policy to derail the CBD legislation. After the CBD bill passed against the wishes of Governor Butch Otter and his administration, these groups used their executive authority to replace it with an alternative treatment program that has done nothing to help Josh Phillips or many other Idahoans suffering from seizures.
In the middle of it all was a governor who had for years professed support for ending drug prohibition, only to turn his back when the opportunity came. One man call what Otter did a “crime against society” for saying no to the CBD bill.
“This is one of the problems of Idaho’s counterproductive and heartless marijuana statutes, which say every single part of the cannabis plant, from stem to stern, so to speak, is illegal,” Wayne Hoffman, president of the Idaho Freedom Foundation, wrote in a letter to the Idaho State Journal.
“Is CBD oil possession and consumption a crime against society?” Hoffman asked. “Or, is the real crime being committed by politicians who so fear personal responsibility that they’re willing to allow this injustice to continue?”
More than 3 million Americans suffer from epilepsy, and about one-third of them have a form of the disease that does not respond well to pharmaceutical treatments.
The American Epilepsy Society (AES) supports all well-controlled studies and has said that limited scientific evidence does not mean CBD is ineffective.
“The anecdotal reports of positive effects of the marijuana derivative cannabidiol (CBD) for some individuals with treatment-resistant epilepsy give reason for hope,” according to the AES website, in which they call on government and private funders to support well-designed clinical research into all promising treatments for epilepsy. The AES has also called for the removal of marijuana from the Schedule I list.
While other families have moved to states where CDB is legal, Josh and his family say they will stay in Salmon. It’s the government, they say, that must change.
“I like to win, not lose,”Josh said. “I’ll fight until I win.”
Cannabis and Mental Health: Bipolar Disorder
Ohio Lawmakers Advance Measure to Legalize Hemp Farming and CBD Oil
Michigan Announces Cannabis Social Equity Program in 19 Communities
Federal Agents Question Missouri Officials Over Medical Marijuana Program
House Votes to Protect States With Legal Marijuana From Feds
Two Plead Guilty to Using United States Postal Service to Traffic Marijuana
Raid of Massive Illegal Cannabis Grow Site in California Took Four Days to Complete
What Was Said at Today’s Congressional Hearing on Federal Marijuana Law Reform
News6 days ago
Coast Guard Busts Submarine Carrying Over $500 Million Worth of Cocaine, Weed
News7 days ago
Florida Court Rules Medical Marijuana Licensing Law Unconstitutional
News3 days ago
Someone Planted 34 Cannabis Plants in the Vermont Statehouse Flower Beds
News6 days ago
Leading Cannabis Brand Bhang Corporation Goes Public
Products6 days ago
The Winners of the 2019 Bay Area Cannabis Cup
Products6 days ago
The Winners of the 2019 SoCal Cannabis Cup
Entertainment6 days ago
Ian Edwards Wants To Be One Of The Greats
Entertainment4 days ago
Recreational Cannabis Comes to Northern Nights Music Festival