Ernie Yacub, Comox Valley advocate for the legalization of marijuana is skeptical, but hopeful about the outcome of the open caucus Liberal Senate Forum on the legalization of marijuana.
Since the spring of 2014, the Senate Liberals have been holding Open Caucus meetings—public included– with the stated goal of fostering nonpartisan discussion on issues facing Canadians. We invite all parliamentarians as well as the public to attend. The February 24th Open Caucus, will discuss the legalization of marijuana. In its speech from the throne, the government reaffirmed its commitment to legalize marijuana during this term of office. Recent polls suggest that the majority of Canadians support such a move. The Open Caucus will discuss how best to proceed with legalization.As How and by whom should marijuana be sold? What steps can be taken to ensure marijuana stays out of the hands of minors? What tools are available to police for those driving under the influence? http://liberalsenateforum.ca/open-caucus/february-24-2016-legalization-marijuana/
Ernie’s response to information so far posited:

“As legislators who will be voting on this legislation in the near future, we are looking to inform ourselves and others on how to go about this in a responsible way that works and can last. We recognize that we cannot touch on all aspects of legalization during a two hour meeting.”

In a 2 hour meeting you’re going to do what? Hopefully it’s just the beginning of a much longer and more thorough examination of the issues but the makeup of the committee does not inspire confidence. Just in case members of the committee sincerely want to “inform themselves and others”,

“At the time of updating (February 2015), a PubMed search for scientific journal articles published in the last 20 years containing the word “cannabis” revealed 8,637 results. Add the word “cannabinoid,” and the results increase to 20,991 articles. That’s an average of more than two scientific publications per day over the last 20 years!” Dr. Martin Sulak

“The endogenous cannabinoid system [ecs] named after the plant that led to its discovery, is perhaps the most important physiologic system involved in establishing and maintaining human health.” Dr. Martin Sulak

It turns out that the endocannabinoid system (ecs) is responsible for homeostasis (balance, equilibrium, stability) and plant cannabinoids (thc, cbd, cbc, cbg) help the ecs when it can’t produce enough endocannabinoids to deal with the stress of illness, injuries, and the myriad other stressors of daily life (better than a martini or 3).

Dr. Ethan Russo has posited a “clinical endocannabinoid deficiency” syndrome to account for the cannabis plant’s therapeutic effects.
http://www.i-gap.org/app/dokumente/Endocarbinoid%20Defeciency.pdf

There is growing evidence that cannabinoids induce autophagy (self-destruction) in cancer cells, cut off their blood supply, and shrink tumours. http://www.worldhealth.net/news/thc_initiates_brain_cancer_cells_to_dest/

There is so much more that can be said about cannabis and the ecs, but the most important is our inalienable right to manage our own health unmediated by the medical industrial complex and the pharmaceutical industry.

Whole plant medicine is the beginning and end of the discussion…
“There are more than 480 natural components found within the cannabis plant, of which 66 have been classified as “cannabinoids….evidence is mounting that these compounds work better together than in isolation: That is the “entourage effect.” Dr. Sanjay Gupta, neurosurgeon and CNN reporter.

And given that cannabidiol (cbd) isn’t psychoactive, how can any government classify cannabis as a harmful drug? Unlike prescribed pharmaceutical drugs that kill over 10,000 patients in hospital settings in Canada every year, cannabis, even in very large doses, does not kill.

The biggest “health care” expenditure by citizens and governments is pharmaceutical drugs. Cannabis can replace most pharmaceutical drugs (imo). Therein lies the prohibition problem.

Forget legalization (ie tax and regulate so we can’t grow it or afford to buy it), simply remove it from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and leave us alone. It would certainly save everybody a lot of time, money, and aggravation.
ernie yacub
wet coast of turtle island