Marijuana, cannabis, weed, grass, by one name or the other you‘ve heard about it and may have even tried it. An Irish physician, William O’Shaughnessy introduced the therapeutic use of marijuana to Western medicine in the 1830s. He gave it to patients to help treat muscle spasms and stomach cramps. Marijuana as a medicine became common throughout much of the Western world by the 19th century. It was the primary pain reliever until the invention of aspirin. Today, there are underreported scientific breakthroughs including the discovery of a non-psychoactive component of marijuana, (CBD), which stimulates adult stem cell growth, prevents the onset of diabetes, and shrinks malignant tumors. By mining the plant’s treasure trove of active ingredients, medical researchers have developed promising treatments for cancer, heart disease, glaucoma, Alzheimer’s, chronic pain, and many other conditions that are beyond the reach of conventional cures.
Martin Lee is co-founder of Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR), the New York-based media watch group. An award-winning journalist, he has investigated the CIA and its drug experiments. His classic book on the topic is Acid Dreams. He is also the author of The Beast Reawakens and Smoke Signals. He is director of Project CBD and a contributing editor of O’Shaughnessy’s.