If there's a form of stupidity which sensible people should be especially outraged by, it's the smugness and arrogance of idiots who assume they know more than everyone else, and feel entitled... no, MANDATED, to control the behavior of everyone else.
I'm speaking about the State Board of Health.
On July 10th they gathered to presumptively save Oklahomans from one of the safer drugs mankind has every discovered. The inhaled Cannabis vapors.
Mind you, these 'best & brightest' physicians, educators, and hospital administrators have collectively less education on the cannabinoid system of receptors and the healing arts of integrating cannabinoids in healthcare.
So they did what simpletons habitually do. They banned anything they don't understand. They convinced an even more simpleton governor to adopt their prohibition on any smoke-able of vape-able forms of medical marijuana. They even banned dispensaries from marketing the raw cannabis flower forms to the licensed patients(consumers).
Here's why their ignorance is deadly, and there are dead Oklahomans who serve to make my point...
It's not completely true to say that you can't die from a marijuana overdose, because no one dies from LSD toxicity, either. They die from jumping off 5th floor balconies while believing they can fly.
A family friend from Glenpool died of a psychotic act from ingesting a massive amount of edibles, then blowing his brains out with a handgun.
I know some who read this will instantly discredit the point using various rhetorical tactics. But my point is that inhaling is far safer than ingesting.
Cannabis is safer than liquor, but there are some dangers when:
The thousands of military veterans and others who suffer severely from PTSD and Anxiety disorders need a rapid-release treatment for the panic attacks, night terrors, flashbacks, and other manifestations of a nervous system imbalance. Ingested meds like the benzodiazepine tranquilizers are currently the highly addicting & debilitating treatments that the VA and other clinics are depending on. They are in pill form and must first be ingested & digested before they calm a troubled soul, which can take up to an hour. That poses a danger for healthcare workers, law enforcement, and the families seeking to provide care.
It also poses a terrible toxicity risk when a frantic and very agitated person often consumes way too much and then suffers for several hours while the drugs stay in their body's intestinal tract. This applies to cannabis edibles as well as 'benzos'.
The inhaled treatments, on the other hand, provide relief in seconds. It also allows for smaller doses so that a patient remains coherent and relaxed, but not severely sedated. It's nearly impossible for a smoking patient to overdose to the point of paranoid psychosis. But ingested pills, liquids, 'gummies' or other food products can easily... and even innocently; bring about psychotic overdoses for some. This is especially true for a patient with no previous history of cannabis use.
And ingested cannabis also gets converted into a more powerful drug, when it passes through the liver and other organs of the human body. That's when the brain gets hit even more profoundly.
Our Board of Health seems to have a propensity for knee jerks when they hear the word 'smoke'. They seem to conjure up those graphic posters of autopsies of black lungs from dead smokers of tobacco. There's no regard for research into the conditions on the lungs of a cannabis smoker, and how different the two conditions are. A heavy tobacco smoker inhales perhaps 100 times the volume of vapors. And raw tobacco vapors are dense with tars and other carcinogens.
Then our Board of Health completely disregards the fate of patients like Ray Jennings, of Broken Arrow. He's lost about 90 pounds while battling thyroid cancer. His mouth, tongue, and throat was so disfigured that normal eating was impossible. And the chemotherapy induced a severe nausea that prohibited him from 'keeping down' what liquids he did try to ingest. Ray's family had a difficult time getting this 50 year old businessman to try smoking cannabis. He finally tried and he says his health was transformed within weeks.
Our Board of Health showed no capacity for innovation or any change to the status quo. Yet their arrogance and sense of entitlement is astounding. It is a 'god complex' said one lawmaker. 'They train them in medical school to be this way'.
So the Board of Health felt so panicked and outraged by the common voters' decision that they invoked a mantra created by these board members.
"Oklahoma's public health authority rests with the Oklahoma State Department of Health, which is responsible for protecting and promoting the health of the citizens of Oklahoma by preventing disease and injury and assuring conditions by which Oklahomans can be healthy."
Fortunately, Attorney Ron Durbin and his clients filed suit against the Health Dept. They quickly relented and passed a new set of scaled back temporary rules, within 5 weeks.
And also fortunately, a fateful state govt. reform finally got passed, by the legislature, last spring. the Board of health is being dismantled in two weeks. The authority will now rest with a newly commissioned office of 'Commissioner of Health', who will have an advisory board, rather than a ruling board. Arrogance can still exist, but a good governor will be able to hold a commissioner accountable. Our governors had no such oversight to fire the Board of Health members.