Posted by Brad @ 12:52 pm on April 20th 2010

On This 4/20…

I want you to read these three essays by Marie Myung-Ok Lee. She has a 9-year-old autistic son with some very bad symptoms (aggression, pica (eating things), self-injury), and after trying traditional treatments, finally made the plunge to medical marijuana. The essays are her experiences with that or, more accurately, her son’s experiences.

1, 2, 3.


  1. There are a lot of really positive anecdotal examples of medicinal marijuana success out there. I don’t doubt them, but I doubt their typicality. No substance on earth works effectively against all the pathogens to which it is applied. Medicine fails, or succeeds incompletely, most of the time.

    What I feel the absence of, and what I long for as a contrarian, is a new catalogue of ANTI-medicinal marijuana anecdotes–classic reefer madness, with a new flavor based upon the inevitable backlash against ANY forms of health treatment, be it the Atkins diet or infant measles vaccination. “I took marijuana for my glaucoma; not only did it give me two forms of cancer, I also somehow got herpes and gained 20 pounds from eating ding-dongs.” “My kid took medicinal marijuana for his anxiety attacks and immediately became a professional rapist.” That sort of thing.

    Comment by Rojas — 4/20/2010 @ 3:36 pm

  2. But that’s part of what makes it a pretty damn effective herbal medicine: the absence of side effects. It isn’t a cure-all (and it’s not really relevant to “pathogens”—it doesn’t “cure” anything, it relieves symptoms), but what separates it from most synthetic pharmaceuticals is that it either helps you, a lot or a little, or it doesn’t. And that’s kind of it. There isn’t really any downside to it, and not really any rubric under which it could fail, unless it just didn’t treat the symptoms at all (treating them incompletely is often preferable to not treating them at all or treating them incompletely and at the expense of, say, your stomach lining and liver functioning).

    Comment by Brad — 4/20/2010 @ 4:09 pm

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