Systematic Discrimination: What It’s Like Living With A Medical Marijuana License – Opinion by Russell Barth – August 2, 2011

Ottawa ON – I would rather have one than not, but living with a Medical Marijuana License from Health Canada has been a bit of a nightmare. For my wife and I, it has been a stressful and humiliating experience on more than one occasion. The fact that we have to carry “Special Papers” with us to keep us out of jail because we have medical conditions smacks of segregation.

Okay, so it isn’t exactly The Gaza Strip or Apartheid or the Warsaw Ghetto, but big things like that often start out as little things like this. I had three of my great uncles go to Europe in the 1940’s to try and prevent exactly this sort of totalitarian nonsense from ever coming to our shores, and now look at us.


First, there is living with a debilitating medical condition itself. People who seek a medical marijuana license from Health Canada do not have intermittent back pain or knee aches that keeps them from tossing around the ol’ pig skin with their grandson, or a bit of nausea when they have one too many chili dogs. The people seeking this medical exemption are people living with painful, debilitating, and often life-threatening conditions like MS, arthritis, crohn’s, PTSD, AIDS, epilepsy, Parkinson’s, and cancer. 


Patients are often made to feel worse when they fail to respond to the “standard” medications, and are often accused of trying to hustle doctors into “a prescription to get high”. The irony being, of course, that anyone who has used pot knows that you can get a lot higher with the pharmaceuticals than you can with pot. If getting high were the motive, there are far easier way to go about it than this.


Then there is the paperwork. My wife and I have been exceedingly lucky in this regard, as our doctors were not reluctant to sign. Many patients have difficulty getting their doctors to sign, but not because of pot. Usually, it is because the doctors don’t want to have anything to do with the unconstitutional federal program, or because their insurance, or the clinic where they practice, or the College Of Physicians, has told them “you are on your own” if they sign.


If you are lucky enough to have a doctor brave enough to sign, the paperwork is fairly easy to figure out. There are a lot of pages to the forms, but each applicant only needs to fill out pertinent parts, not the whole thing. 


Then there is the 10-20 – sometimes 30-40 – week wait for the paperwork to be processed. Not only is the Health Canada office ridiculously understaffed, the people sending in their applications often make mistakes by forgetting to sign something, or forgetting to check a box, or forgetting to send photos. This slows the process down.


If you call in and ask for an update or a callback to find out what the status of your application is, and that will slow it down even more. Not as a punishment, as some have accused…. the simple fact of the matter is, it takes time to search through a pile of files, find the one in question, review it, call you back, hope you are actually home when they call, etc. etc. At best, they say it will take 8-10 weeks to process renewals and much longer for new applications.


I am confident that the people in the office are doing the best they can with the work they are handed, but the government could literally hire 100 more people, and it would still take 6-8 weeks to get applications processed. It should only take 4-6 days for something like this, but the government has deliberately understaffed the office in order to let the program fail. They are playing politics with people’s lives, all in an effort to never admit that pot is not dangerous!


Keep in mind that the patient cannot start using or growing without the permit in their hands, so they have to choose between suffering with no medicine for weeks or months, or breaking the law. Imagine the doctor giving you a prescription, you go to the pharmacy, and they say “Have a seat, your order will be ready in 70-80 days.”


Once they get the permit, it can take 20-30 weeks to get the first harvest – and the patient has to wait for that as well. The courts have repeatedly established that it is unconstitutional to place patients in this position, and the government has chosen to ignore those rulings. In fact, many permit holders have been charged with various offenses over the past decade simply because Health Canada couldn’t get their act together. 


Personally, I spent three weeks this past July waiting for my permit to arrive. My old one expired on June 28, 2011, and my new one didn’t arrive until July 20. Incidentally, the issue date on my new permit was June 20, 2011 – eight days before the expiry date! It took them a whole month simply to mail the already-completed forms out! THAT is how bad the backlog is!


Last year I broke the law for five weeks, risking arrest, confiscation of my medicine (which would ruin my health), eviction, imprisonment, and – in the case of my epileptic wife – even death. All because Stephen Harper won’t allow the sock puppet Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq to hire enough people to get the paperwork done on time.


Then there is supply. Some people have a designated grower, some people grow themselves. The plant limits are arbitrary and do not reflect the realities of marijuana cultivation, but, naturally, the government has deliberately ignored all the science on this issue, and sided with the police, who demanded limits. As a result, patients and growers are placed in a position which forces illegal and/or dangerous and/or outrageously counterproductive activity.


The regulations also limit how much bud we can store to just a one month supply. So, while any Canadian can buy and store up enough food, booze, medicine, fuel, or ammunition for a year – or a lifetime – we are only allowed to possess enough live-saving medicine for one month’s worth of our daily dose. If we get caught with even a smidgen over our limit, we could lose the right to have a permit at all, ever again.


The problem with this is, if you have a crop loss, then you have no medicine – sometimes for months at a time. So maybe you need to buy some from a compassion club or another grower. Both of these actions are violations of the regulations. Maybe you borrow some from a grower to tide you over, then when your crop comes in – if it comes in – you will owe him that much back. This is, of course, completely not allowed by the regulations, but the circumstances often force patients to make choices like this.


If a grower succeeds and manages to grow more than he is allowed to store, he literally has to throw away perfectly good medicine. Medicine that he paid money and spent a lot of effort to produce, he now must throw in the garbage, or face jail time. He can’t keep it, and he can’t sell it, so what can he do? Not that trashing it really helps much. A man in Quebec was convicted of cultivation with intent because of a bag of wet leaves and branches that he was planning to compost in the spring.


And of course, this is stressful for patients, which is by design of the mad punishment-fetishist, Stephen Harper. Harper is a bully, and bullies like to watch weak people suffer. Stephen Harper, it seems, is doing this because he wants me, my wife, and every other pot user in Canada to suffer and to feel scared. He wants the program to fail because we medical users represent the human rights “foot in the door” towards full-on legalization, and that is why he is punishing us. 


I mean, look at his new policy of taking away people’s licenses to grow. Why is he doing this? Because of a few reports of some growers possibly growing more than they were permitted to (by an unconstitutional program). Imagine having your car confiscated by the government because someone in BC may have driven over the speed limit. “For the sake of public safety, all cars are now illegal and all citizens are forced to walk or take public transit.” That would be absurd, but that is what is happening to medical pot users. Harper is issuing some mass-punishment to all medical pot users because he is displeased with the successes we have made so far. Bully to the core.


Cops have told friends of mine “You are only supposed to use it at home.” which is not true at all. According to the regulations, we are allowed to use our medicine anywhere that tobacco is legally being used. That means I can smoke my joint on the sidewalk, in parks, or anywhere outside of designated non-smoking areas, like around building entrances. We cannot use it on the property of a liquor-licensed establishment like a bar or restaurant. But cops and security guards often like to treat us like common street urchins. 


Just this past weekend, an LCBO security guard asked me to smoke “across the street” while I waited on the sidewalk for a bus.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qytx1M5qvZY


Then there is the media. When it comes to marijuana, these foppish clowns will regurgitate whatever tripe the police and government feed them. When we point out – with reams of proof – how they are wrong, or lying, or citing debunked science, we get the brush off. For example, the story about pot being “closely associated” with mental illness has been mutated and hyperbolized to the point of absurdity. The study – actually a “mega-study”, or study of lots of other corresponding studies – showed that it was equally as likely that mental illness sufferers were self-medicating with cannabis. Meaning the symptoms brought on the pot use, not the other way around.


How does the media report this? Huge headline with a big smokey joint photo: “Pot Linked To Increased Schizophrenia”. Meanwhile, the stories I keep sending them about recent science showing how pot shrinks tumors and does dozens of good other things, they won’t print. Or they print a small blurb on the back pages.


Even if the reporter is okay and writes a decent story, their editors are usually tired old farts who think pot is a “fringe issue”, so they report it as a “fringe issue”, and the public continues to think of pot as a “fringe issue”. When people like me try to point out that, no, it isn’t a “fringe issue”, it is, in fact, an issue that is intrinsically linked to global crime, civil liberties, government waste and overstepping of authority, racism, poverty, health, the environment, and energy sources, and so on, they just scoff. They have been indoctrinated into thinking pot is bad, period. When confronted with new evidence, they willfully ignore it.


Then there is the public. Media-addled nincompoops who actually want to have their old opinions confirmed rather than possibly learn anything new. I cannot even count the number of conversations I have had with people who flatly refuse to even look at new evidence. They act as if the issue is closed already: 

“Pot is illegal because it is bad.”

“No, actually, it is illegal because it is medicine, and here is the science: 20,000 studies done over the course of a century showing pot’s safety and efficacy.”

“Shut up stoner. Go kill your brain cells somewhere else.”

And so on.


They will contradict themselves too: “Pot should be legal to use, but people who grow it and sell it should go to jail.” When I ask them “Where would the pot come from, and how would people get it, if no one is allowed to grow or sell it?” I get blink blink blink.


Remember the days when it was a “commonly held belief” that people of color were a lower species than white people, and therefore incapable of voting and so on? That was just before WW2. 

Remember when women were considered too stupid and “emotional” to be allowed to vote, or drive, or own property, or make their own choices about who they could marry, or whether or not they could have sex out of wedlock, or have an abortion, or hold higher positions of authority in society, or get equal pay for equal work? Some of those rights didn’t come about until the 1970’s.

Remember when homosexuals were considered mutants who needed to be treated with electroshock therapy with an aim to “curing” them of their same-sex tendencies? That was the rule as recently as 1965.


During those times, there were people who decried the old ways and demanded newer, fairer treatments for these people. They faced police and bigots and violence and discrimination. They were lied about in public, called perverts and criminals and sinners and ne’er do wells. They had their detractors – racists, sexists, homophobes – who called them people crazy, attacked them physically, and called for their imprisonment and even execution. 


Today, while sick people like me fight for the rights of sick people and healthy people alike, we are called all manner of names by the media, the government, the police, and the public. Take the comments forum on this page, for example. The kind of things that are people say about pot users would be actionable if said about many other groups, but because we are just stoners, editors and webmasters and the CRTC and the Press Council and every other authority just lets it go. Why? because we are not people in the eyes of the general public.


The media seems to consider medical marijuana users a novelty, much the same way they regarded “gay rights” and “women’s rights” activists with amusement and incredulity in the early 1970’s. They have, over the nine years that I have been haranguing them, gone from “incredulous” to “respectful”, but they still get so much of it wrong that it is sometimes hard to imagine that they aren’t doing it purposefully. When they use the word “dope”, or put quotes around the word medical when they talk about the issue, they diminish us. They know this, and they do it on purpose. They want to discredit the medical users. Why? Because if they admit that pot is good for “medical” users, then they have a hard time justifying the prohibition that everyone else must obey, so they keep it simple and just discredit us all. Easier for the public to absorb, you see….


Meanwhile, the government calls marijuana a “dangerous narcotic”, yet claims to be committed to giving we sick Canadians quick access to quality medicine. They lie on both counts. Pot is neither dangerous, nor a narcotic. And the government is not committed to helping sick Canadians access clean affordable, potent marijuana… they are keen to build a dozen new jails and fill them with pot growers. They campaigned on a promise – a PROMISE – to build more jails and put more people – specifically pot growers – in those jails for longer periods of time.


The police – The Hired Help – call us liars with comments like “No one needs THAT much pot in a day.”, and so on, as if they somehow know more about medicine and what works for us than we do, or our doctors. They propagandize about our growers, and exaggerate the dangers of pot use to the point that it makes them look absurd in the eyes of even the dullest kids in class.


Trying to medicate in public is always a problem. I usually just smoke a joint, or two, every hour or so when I am out. Every time I do this, I risk being assaulted by an Ottawa cop. I have never had an incident yet, and I have a 50/50 chance of getting the officer who is polite about it… But most likely I will encounter the Red-Bull-Charged lunkhead who thinks I am some sort of cartel operative, and that he is the swift and brutal hand of justice, saving the community from a truly perilous fate. It is just a matter of time, really, before some cop cripples me by kneeling on my head for the terrible, society-endangering action of smoking a joint on a park bench… which is why I tend to stay home a lot and have only been outdoors once after dark since December of 2010.


My choices are, a) smoke as needed and risk violence, arrest, and/or hassle from the public, b) refrain from medicating in public, suffer, and keep my excursions short, or c) stay home. What would you do? I have a sick wife who I cannot leave alone at home. I have errands to run, and have to bring her with me.


Here is a video from this past weekend of a security guard at the LCBO asking me to smoke “across the street”. 

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qytx1M5qvZY

He smoked a cigarette right there not 10 minutes earlier, a guy was smoking tobacco at the same time as him, and I was on the sidewalk waiting for the bus, and he asks me to go “across the street”. Can you image a gay couple being asked to hold hands “across the street”?


A few weeks ago I was asked not to “partake” by a bunch of Live Action Role Playing nerds in a local park. I explained that this was my medicine, and that asking me not to medicate in public was on par with asking a gay couple not to hold hands, “….because, you know, there are kids around…”. I was appalled. We were downwind, and we liked watching them play their little game as it was something quite far and a welcome distraction from our usual daily drudgery of medicating and suffering and activism and isolation. They made us feel unwelcome, and my wife cried.


In January, an OC Transpo bus driver harangued me as I stood just off of a bus platform, making fun of me like some sort of school yard bully. He suggested I stand “over there”, which I did, and then he proceeded to make fun of me. When OC Transpo and the city refused to meet my demands for a simple written apology, I launched an Ontario Human Rights Complaint against the driver, the company, the city, and the province. From the driver, company, and city, I have asked for nothing more than written public apologies and acknowledgments of my Charter-protected rights to use my medicine. From the province – for failing to regulate the medical use of marijuana (as they are constitutionally-mandated to do) for ten years – I have demanded $10 million. I doubt I will get that, even if I win, and I have no illusions about winning. I would have filed a huge lawsuit, but, being poor and disable, I have no money, and people with no money have no recourse to justice. Justice is only for people who can afford to buy it.


Many families have been torn asunder by this issue as well. A child of a medical user might report them to a teacher, a parent might scoff at a medical user’s recovery, and marriages have been ended. Ferocious custody battles have ensued, and people have lost their homes and jobs, all because of certain people’s flat-out refusal to look at facts, science, history, or the things they see right in front of them….. like their own son getting out of a wheelchair.


So, before you go getting your doctor to sign, think about the people who fight hard every day to keep that right available for you.

 

 Island Ink Jet

 

 

 

 

 

122 Responses to "Systematic Discrimination: What It’s Like Living With A Medical Marijuana License – Opinion by Russell Barth – August 2, 2011"

  1. Mark Chenier   August 8, 2011 at 7:03 AM

    “Not even one person is righteous. No one understands. No one searches for God. All have turned away. Together they have become worthless. No one shows kindness, not even one person! Their throats are open graves. With their tongues they practice deception. The venom of poisonous snakes is under their lips. Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness. Their feet are swift to shed blood. Ruin and misery mark their ways. They have not learned the path to peace. There is no fear of God before their eyes.” (Romans 3:9-18)
    Maybe that Letter of Paul’s should be cc’ed to Spencer Recovery Centers
    Sounds a lot like you and your group 555.

    “no conservative, Bible believing, Born again Christian would go for medical Marijuana.”
    I may not vote for Harper but I do consider myself a bathed in the blood born again so I know of at least one. I know of quite a few others. Most are successful people with good jobs and families a number of them even claim to be born again. I will pray for you preacher you need it. It is more than you offered to do for me. It is all I can do for you.

  2. Russell Barth   August 8, 2011 at 7:04 AM

    preacher you are a superstitious child, afraid of the boogey man

    i laugh derisively at you

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRm1yqSmsGY&NR=1

  3. Mark Chenier   August 8, 2011 at 7:09 AM

    Mark 5:15 “When they came to Jesus and saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there dressed and in his right mind, they were frightened”

    My name is Mark, I dress in sackcloth and am covered in ashes. Maybe when you realize the error you are making you will repent.

    Even Paul was a great persecutor until he was walking to Damascus.

  4. Russell Barth   August 8, 2011 at 7:21 AM

    a single acre of hemp can produce 1000 gallons of ethanol in a season. in the southern US, that means 3000 gallons per acre, per year.

    do the math.
    if the US were to change all of the corn-ethanol crops to hemp, they would save money, produce more fuel, use less poison, NOT contaminate water with farm run off, heal the soil, and produce food at the same time (tops go for food, the stalks go for fuel, so it is two crops in one field).

    they could start exporting fuel instead of importing it.

    But the US will NOT allow hemp growing, and canada doesn’t have the infrastructure to start something like that. someone would have to invest big bucks in decortication and processing facilities, and make them small enough and numerous enough to offset the travel costs of shipping wet or dry hemp across the country.

    If I grow 100 acres of hemp, it needs to be dried, or transported wet. Then it needs to be transported dry or processed on site. these things start eating away at the benefits. So while it the field might produce 100,000 gallons of ethanol, we will lose a large percentage OF that ethanol in the transportation, storage, processing, etc….

    it could be phased-in – 5% every year over 20 years so that the oil industry has time to adjust. But the government will not spend $100 million today to make a billion ten years from now – UNLESS it is in the oil industry.

    but corn is where CERTAIN people have their riches. Big Oil and Big Corn are in cahoots and always have been. They both control the governments. And they use people like preacher to talk shit about Hemp and pot to dissuade any serious debate.
    “Why not use hemp instead of corn?”
    “Shut up, hippie. Go back to your yoga class, you queer. Corn is AMERICAN!”

    corn ethanol is a boondoggle. if we used hemp instead, it would be cheaper and more environmentally friendly…. which is WHY we don’t do it. The US is to blame. they bare so superstitious about pot – like preacher here – that they are willing to starve their own economy with their oil addiction.

    and as for the back and forth with preacher – the guy is writing stuff that would have my lawyer peeing on his chair if he’d said it in public. If I had the money, I would already BE suing Preacher for slander/libel and defamation of character.

    Keep it up, Biblethumper…… it is all being recorded…. and I suggest you retain a lawyer TODAY, because if I don’t sue you very soon, I expect someone else probably will. Try praying your way out defamation suit and see where that gets you.

  5. admin   August 8, 2011 at 7:30 AM

    I don’t think litigation would get either of you anywhere closer to your goals. It’d probably get your lawyers closer to their goals though 🙂

  6. Russell Barth   August 8, 2011 at 7:34 AM

    as for medical being a lever for legalization…… why would that be a bad thing.

    “Oh no! We can’t let people use pot for medical reasons! That might undermine our wildly counterproductive, gangster-subsidizing prohibition system! Who will fill the jails? We’d have to lay off thousands of cops! The fraidy-cats will be in a tizzy. No, no.,….. pot must remain illegal to keep society unsafe!”

    Nonsense. people act like legalization means the cops just not enforcing the laws and everyone just doing whatever they want. people look at the argument the wrong way, like trying to read something in a mirror.

    heroin is safer than alcohol. it addicts fewer people, kills fewer people, does less damage to the body over all. Yes, heroin should be sold openly in pharmacies just as booze is sold in liquor stores.
    Not this taliban skag polluting the streets of Canada, but clean, domestically produced, dose-regulated.
    I would never use it, myself, as opiates have serious side effects. but the prohibition on that substance is serving no useful purpose.

    yet people act like legalizing heroin is as insane as legalizing rape. They will sit there, with a beer in their XXXXing HAND – and tell me that legalizing heroin is insane.

  7. Furtz   August 8, 2011 at 7:38 AM

    Didn’t the preacher say “End of discussion!”? Hilarious, indeed.
    Let the Battle of the Bible Quotes shootout continue!
    Here’s one just to keep things going. I have no idea what the gibberish means, but it’s kind of amusing anyway.
    “And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.” Jude 1:14-15 (KJV).

  8. Russell Barth   August 8, 2011 at 7:49 AM

    i have been in a tangle with Ottawa city hall for months over this.

    40 years ago (1971), the very idea of same sex adoption, same sex marriage, pride parades, and Mayors participating in the parade, was about as nonsensical as blacks being allowed to vote was back in 1931.

    Today, anyone espousing the intolerant, 1971-era attitudes about gay marriage are widely regarded as fools living in the past. But back in 1971, the attitudes we find so sickening in 2011 were held by the majority!

    Today, pot users sit where gay-rights activist sat 40 years ago.

    I complain to my city counselor and he is like “well, you know, it is illegal to smoke pot in public…”

    That is the POINT, Counselor – it IS NOT illegal for ME!

    So when I complain to authorities about the discrimination I face, I face more discrimination at their hands. When I talk about it publicly – I get more shit.

  9. Mark Chenier   August 8, 2011 at 7:57 AM

    well it is obvious that 555 is no true Christian said end of discussion then posted more lies. So he lied about that too.
    @555 The RIGHT to medicate has been upheld by the courts. Despite your ravings and gnashing of teeth there is NOTHING you can do about it. Even the Harper Govt. cannot take away that right. They can put up obstacles but they cannot stop it.
    With each new infringement on the patients rights we are back in court and get more rights. end of discussion? I think not. Case closed? Not yet but soon will be.

  10. Mark Chenier   August 8, 2011 at 8:01 AM

    @furtz Great quote must be the Holy Spirit working through you that led you to it. Preacher take note.

  11. Furtz   August 8, 2011 at 8:37 AM

    @ Russell. Don’t get the preacher fired up about gays and “the gay agenda”. He really should focus his hate on one group at a time, otherwise, he’ll get overloaded and his head might explode.

  12. Furtz   August 8, 2011 at 9:06 AM

    @ Mark. I live in a Holy Spirit free zone, and I’m gonna keep it that way.

  13. Stan   August 8, 2011 at 9:31 AM

    Russell Barth, I find it surprising that the Editor of this on-line newspaper allows you to continue promoting the use of drugs. You stated that you smoke pot in public, please never bump into me while doing so because I won’t allow my lungs to be raped by your smoke! For all the kids you’ve screwed up who read your tripe, do us all a favour and OD on something!

  14. Furtz   August 8, 2011 at 2:40 PM

    Seems like Stan has some hate issues and anger issues as well. There is help available for people like Stan and the preacher, if only they’d seek it.

  15. Mark Chenier   August 8, 2011 at 3:08 PM

    Stan do not threaten Russell. You better hope its not me that’s smoking his joint walking down the street. If any one attacked me I would be forced to defend myself. At 300 lbs after 30+ years in construction I am not weak. I may be over 50 but my cane will give me an advantage. Besides how would you look attacking an old disabled grey beard who was LEAGALY medicating himself? Maybe I would just do nothing and sue your butt into the next decade. Just like Russell would probably do. Hope you have lots of $. The courts have given us these rights, what good is a right if you do not use it? You do more damage to your lungs with the air you breath in most major cities than a little bit of second hand cannabis smoke.

    @Furtz The Lord works in mysterious ways. How did you find such a good quote? Did you already know it?

  16. admin   August 8, 2011 at 3:18 PM

    Hi everyone. Please play nice. We can’t have threats and terms like lawyer bandied about. Debate the message, not the messenger, please, because otherwise it just turns into repeated shots at each other which get you nowhere. We have an audience to inform and entertain….

  17. Furtz   August 8, 2011 at 3:24 PM

    Mark, just Google “crazy bible quotes”.

    Here’s another one…

    #2 – 2 Kings 18:27
    “But Rabshakeh said unto them, Hath my master sent me to thy master, and to thee, to speak these words? Hath he not sent me to the men which sit on the wall, that they may eat their own dung, and drink their own piss with you?”

  18. Mark Chenier   August 8, 2011 at 4:04 PM

    @Furtz I would never presume to come between any one and what they chose to or not to believe. However I believe nothing is random all things happen for a reason.Some form of a universal conciseness that encompasses the whole exists. However you chose to express that is up to each individual. Their relationship with it is their own.

    Notice I only made 2 references in my first post not quotes, all the quotes I used came from you and 555. Under what I believe the Lord provided me with the needed quotes using you and 555 in order to give a clear message to 555 that what he was spewing was wrong. The fact that the strongest rebuke came from you merely reenforced the message to him. Not coming from you but rather through you.

    @555 believe whatever you want. You will anyway. I guess you have no internet during the day or you would have responded by now. Is it possible that you realize your errors and repented your sin? I look forward to your response.

  19. Furtz   August 8, 2011 at 4:54 PM

    @ Mark. I don’t give a rats ass what you or the preacher or my dog or my neighbour believes. We all bumble through life the best way we can. Where I draw the line is when anyone claims to know “The Truth” and declares that those who don’t agree will burn in hell. Right now, I take comfort in the presence of The Flying Spaghetti Monster, but that might change, and I don’t threaten those who don’t kiss His Noodly Ass with eternal damnation. You like the kind and loving Jesus. The preacher likes the hateful and sadistic Jesus, and I like spaghetti.

  20. Mark Chenier   August 8, 2011 at 5:07 PM

    I like spaghetti too. Make a great meat sauce for it.

  21. Furtz   August 8, 2011 at 6:05 PM

    So Mark, are you saying that you might take a look at Pastafarianism as an alternative to the old tried and failed silliness? For the sauce, we want lots of garlic (keeps vampires away) and chilli peppers (keeps the devil away) and oregano (keeps the preacher away) added lovingly to a simmering pot of tomatoes and ground beef. Each sauce you create is a deep and personal declaration of your love and dedication to to the Noodly One.
    Works for me, and you won’t burn in hell if you don’t believe me.

  22. Russell Barth   August 9, 2011 at 5:21 AM

    http://www.subgenius.com/

  23. Mark Chenier   August 9, 2011 at 8:51 AM

    I like to add some clamato juice for a little extra zing too. As for beliefs, those are personal and should not prevent two different minded people from getting along. You can even find a quote that tells you to do as the Romans (Pastafarians Too in later years) do so to speak. In other words if you served me a plate of pasta I would enjoy it very much. I never said that you would burn in hell if you do not believe as I do.

    @ Russell I met Bob Dobbs a long time ago. Everybody needs slack, the more the better.

    @555 guess you realize when you are wrong. Whats the matter run out of fuel to feed me?

  24. Furtz   August 9, 2011 at 9:42 AM

    I’m thinking that Mark may be an in-the-closet part-time Pastafarian….not a bad thing.
    I’ll try the clamato even though it isn’t in strict accordance with Pastafarian teachings. 🙂
    I’m sure the preacher is just taking a little time off to build up his bile supply.

  25. Mark Chenier   August 9, 2011 at 9:57 AM

    I confess all this pasta talk made me visit the Pastafarian temple last night as I had some of my sauce left from the last feast we hosted.

  26. Furtz   August 9, 2011 at 3:48 PM

    It’s really cool and refreshing to to run into a self-described Christian who has a sense of humour and an open mind. Mark, you are a gentleman.

  27. flipper   August 9, 2011 at 8:55 PM

    Think about it, licence or not, over 50, the kids grown and away… if I want to spark one up in the yard that’s my business. Anyone else that feels it’s their right to make it their business, is a meddling fool.

    And I’d be the fool if I were to wait ’til I had glaucoma, cataracts, chemo or some other malady, before treating myself to a wee buzz; with the birds and the bees, in the shade of my old plum tree.

  28. Mark Chenier   August 9, 2011 at 9:39 PM

    I know a number of people who are like minded. Being a patient myself has enabled me to change a lot of minds. If its some one you know on a personal level you start to view it in a different light when you see them in pain and the relief they get from cannabis.

    It makes it easier to take the pain I am given, (because I am not as bad as some of the others), when I can fight for the rights of the others that are not strong enough to fight themselves. For myself I would rather follow the example that Jesus set than the words that some others try sticking in his mouth.

    Remember the only time he showed anger was when he was kicking the money changers (bankers) out of the temple or was rebuking those with a holier than thou attitude, the Pharisees. He hung out with tax collectors and whores. Said love your neighbor did not qualify that by saying they had to be a certain faith. I am very certain he too would have shared at the Flying Spaghetti Gods Feast. Maybe even bring the garlic bread and turn the water into wine. He was good at stretching the food too but that was bread and fish. Might have done spaghetti instead if he had known about it, but it was about 1300 years later that Marco Polo brought it from China.

    @555 come on, where are you. We know you are lurking. You never did tell us who you worked for. Could it be,…. Satan?

    You don’t think that something might have happened do you Furtz? Maybe he choked on some spaghetti.

  29. Mark Chenier   August 9, 2011 at 11:06 PM

    oops my error its Flying Spaghetti Monster No insult intended.

    Anyhow, I got to thinking maybe the reason we have not heard from 555 is he cannot find a single quote to support his position?

  30. frank trottier   August 11, 2011 at 1:46 PM

    Jesus used Marijuana?
    As doubtful as the following hypothesis might first seem to the reader, I might as well boldly state my case right from the start: either Jesus used marijuana or he was not the Christ. The very word “Christ”, by the implication of its linguistic origins and true meaning, gives us the most profound evidence that Jesus did in fact use the same herb as his ancient semitic ancestors, and which is still used by people around the world for its enlightening and healing properties.

    “If you know the truth, the truth will make you free.” (John 8:32)

  31. Russell Barth   August 11, 2011 at 2:36 PM

    probably EVERYONE used cannabis back then. it was an easy crop to grow and grew almost anywhere, and can be used for a zillion things.
    http://www.equalrights4all.org/religious/bible.htm

  32. Furtz   August 11, 2011 at 2:58 PM

    I know a few Pastafarians who use it, but only for spiritual enlightenment.

  33. Mark Chenier   August 11, 2011 at 8:41 PM

    Today I went down town to give blood as I do every 60 days or so. Since I have a phobia of needles its is very stressful for me. The Dr. prescribed zannex for the fear( I can walk high steel but am afraid of needles).
    After I got to the last subway stop my back was in excruciating pain. as soon as I got out of the metro I sat down and pulled out a joint to medicate. After I was about 2/3 finished two female cops come striding up

    “Are you going to put that out or do I have to arrest you?

    “No I will not put it out until you see this” I pull out pink sheet.

    “I do not agree with your choice of a place to smoke”

    ” It is not your place to agree to anything. I have just come from giving blood the metro ride has caused my back a great deal of pain.”

    “You only live two blocks away”

    “I would not be able to walk the two blocks without medicating. I am a grey beard old man with a cane a broken neck and a degenerating back. Get lost if some one try’s to mug me for my meds I’ll give you a call otherwise stop harassing disabled Old people”

    To be honest I was not nervous at all angry, maybe insulted. The feeling it gave me was one of empowerment. I was especially incensed when she said “I do not agree with your choice of a place to smoke”. If it had gone much further it would have been badge numbers and I would be filing a harassment charge.

    Yes Jesus used hemp. the anointing oil that was used for Hebrew ceremonies was made from cannabis as was the incense (hashish)

  34. Russell Barth   August 12, 2011 at 3:40 PM

    next time get the name and badge number and file a complaint. after a few dozen complaints, a memo will go out….

  35. Antipasta   August 13, 2011 at 5:49 AM

    Jesus didn’t need to use marijuana, after all, he was the Son of God. Wait till the good Pastor hears what you are saying, he’ll come down on you like a ton of bricks!

  36. Mark Chenier   August 13, 2011 at 11:09 AM

    I said He used hemp. The historical records are there. The reason the false preacher never responded is because every time he goes on rant another christian pops up to refute what he says. I have been reviewing the other columns he has posted on I can see a pattern.

    In case you did not know linen is made from both hemp and flax. CANNA where the wedding feast was, the word we use for cannabis today comes from Hebrew. canvas comes from canna textiles ropes nets as I recall there was a lot of fishing going on. Yes Jesus used hemp, I never said he smoked it. The recipes for the anointing oil and the incense are in old Hebrew texts. Maybe Antipasta you should do a little research.

  37. Furtz   August 13, 2011 at 12:31 PM

    I have an Eminence “Cannabis Rex” speaker in one of my guitar amps. The cone is made from hemp and even has a green colour. These speakers are manufactured in the USA. Not sure how Eminence got around the crazy hemp laws, but I’m glad they did.
    http://www.eminence.com/speakers/speaker-detail/?model=Cannabis_Rex

  38. tnpreacher555   August 13, 2011 at 1:12 PM

    Mark – you said Furtz was lead of the Spirit of God to quote Jude. If you are discerning at all, you would know that Furtz is not a Christian, and neither does he confess to be one, nor does he want to be one. But the issue is not with Furtz, but with your lack of insight and discernment, as you also confess to be a Christian. (First case in point).

    Second case in point:
    Your research on “hemp” is from a very liberal bias source. Such sources deny the deity of Christ, the literal resurrection of Christ, and His atonement. They out right deny the inspiration of the Holy Scriptures, and do not support the basic Biblical doctrine as the “re-birth”. So how can they not be bias towards the use of dope? How can you believe their word on the history and use of hemp, when they deny these other basic Bible beliefs? To say that the Lord Jesus consumed hemp – dope, etc. [in whatever form] is most blasphemous, and injurious to the person of God’s Son.

    In the New Testament, it declares that the Lord Jesus Christ was “filled with Spirit without measure” and that He was full of grace, and that He was sinless, but to say He was influenced by any other thing, or person, other than the Holy Spirit,and the Word of God is giving the enemy of our souls a place to reproach our blessed Saviour. And in fact, to believe such is to declare that He sinned in not obeying only the Holy Spirit, while on the earth. The Lord Jesus Christ said this –

    Joh 14:30 – 31 Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me. But that the world may know that I love the Father; and as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence”.

    Did our Lord Jesus obey this commandment while consuming hemp [in whatever form], Eph 5:18 “Stop getting drunk with wine, which leads to wild living, but keep on being filled with the Spirit”.

    If you have a license to use medical pot, than that is between you and God, and the government. Don’t drag the spotless Lamb of God to the level of a dope head just in order to allow others to a have a license to sin!

  39. tnpreacher555   August 13, 2011 at 1:21 PM

    The above post to Mark, is not to Mark only. It is to all the dope heads that want to justify their addition [in whatever form it is] by wanting God to say it’s ok to use dope. Take the Lord Jesus for an example and live in peace with God – Eph 5:18 “Stop getting drunk with wine, which leads to wild living, but keep on being filled with the Spirit”. You can do this by first, repenting of your sins [self will, living for yourself, rebellion towards God, etc), and believing upon the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. “You must be born from above”!

  40. Furtz   August 13, 2011 at 1:50 PM

    I knew the bile pressure relief valve had to open soon. Otherwise we’d be reading about an exploding preacher in the obits.

  41. Mark Chenier   August 13, 2011 at 2:33 PM

    Jesus wore clothes, real good chance they were made from hemp.
    The samples of cloth and ropes from the time were hemp.
    Preacher you chose to ignore historical fact.
    I do not get high, the beaver that sits inside my spine chewing to get out takes a break that is all.
    I thank God for creating a simple natural plant to take away that pain.
    If I wanted to get high I would take the morphine and Oxycontin I can easily get.
    I take comfort in the fact that Christ gives me enough strength to challenge the likes of you.
    I consider you and your ilk to be like the Pharisees. Christ reached out to people showed them love you do not.
    If Jesus was walking around today he would have been more likely to break bread and share pasta with Furtz or Russell than with you. If you would ask him why he would tell you. The best thing of all is he would not ask for anything, unlike you who wants $.

    And I will raise up for them a plant of renown, and they shall be no more consumed with hunger in the land, neither bear the shame of the heathen any more. — Ezekiel 34:29

    “Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed which is upon the face of all the earth.…To you it will be for meat.” … And God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. (Genesis 1:29-31)

    Of course preacher the day your kind would come along was fortold
    “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times, some shall … speak lies in hypocrisy … commanding to abstain from meats which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. (Paul: 1 Timothy 4:1-3)

    HEMPSEED as a meat substitue.

    “I will take my rest and I will consider in my dwelling place like a clear heat upon herbs. For afore harvest, when the bud is perfect and the sour grape is ripening in the flower, he shall cut off the sprigs with pruning hooks and take away and cut down the branches.” (Isaiah 18:4-5)

    He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth; And wine that maketh glad the heart of man and oil to make his face to shineth. (Psalm 104:14-15)

    The apostle Paul wrote, I know, and am persuaded by the Lord Jesus, that there is nothing unclean of itself: but to him that esteemeth anything to be unclean, to him it is unclean. … For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. (Paul: Romans 14:14,17)

    In other words preacher if you believe cannabis is not right for you, don’t use it. However some of us have a need for it because it works better and causes less harm than anything else.

    What would Jesus do? He chose to break the law in order to heal the sick.

    Matthew 12
    Jesus Is Lord of the Sabbath
    1 At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain and eat them. 2 When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, “Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath.”

    3 He answered, “Haven’t you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? 4 He entered the house of God, and he and his companions ate the consecrated bread—which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests. 5 Or haven’t you read in the Law that the priests on Sabbath duty in the temple desecrate the Sabbath and yet are innocent? 6 I tell you that something greater than the temple is here. 7 If you had known what these words mean, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice,’[a] you would not have condemned the innocent. 8 For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.”

    9 Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue, 10 and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to bring charges against Jesus, they asked him, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?”

    11 He said to them, “If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.”

    13 Then he said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other. 14 But the Pharisees went out and plotted how they might kill Jesus.
    God’s Chosen Servant
    15 Aware of this, Jesus withdrew from that place. A large crowd followed him, and he healed all who were ill. 16 He warned them not to tell others about him. 17 This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah:

    18 “Here is my servant whom I have chosen,
    the one I love, in whom I delight;
    I will put my Spirit on him,
    and he will proclaim justice to the nations.
    19 He will not quarrel or cry out;
    no one will hear his voice in the streets.
    20 A bruised reed he will not break,
    and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out,
    till he has brought justice through to victory.
    21 In his name the nations will put their hope.”[b]

    33 “Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit. 34 You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. 35 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. 36 But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. 37 For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.

    like I said before preacher your own words condemn you

  42. Furtz   August 13, 2011 at 4:55 PM

    For the record, not that anyone gives a rat’s ass, I consider myself to be a recovering Christian, and am working on becoming a devout atheist. I dabble in Pastafarism as a transitional crutch on the road from insanity to sanity. As a 63 year old, I’m proud to say that I’ve been Christianity-free for over fifty years!
    I honestly believe that religion, like alcohol and weed, can be a good thing if used in moderation. Sadly, some people get completely overtaken by one or more of these things. The preacher is an obvious example of someone who has an out of control addiction. When people actually cross the street in order to avoid you, you should know that you have a problem, and maybe should get some help. Then again, if all those people who avoid the preacher will eventually be thrown into the fiery pit of brimstone for eternity, the preacher will have more room for himself in Heaven. I can understand that when booking your room in the afterlife, you don’t want it too crowded.

  43. tnpreacher555   August 13, 2011 at 6:22 PM

    So Mark did you go to the link – http://truthsaves.org/articles/marijuana-in-scripture.shtml
    Did you read it, study it? See Mark there are other Bible teachers that disagree with your and many others theory about God justifying using dope, besides me. Remember – The truth will make you free!

  44. Mark Chenier   August 13, 2011 at 6:44 PM

    The way he is going it may be the preacher who ends up in the pit for preaching hatred and having no compassion.

    From the second link you sent me preacher:
    ~ Tim’s Answer ~ Comments are open for this article

    You state that there are Christians who use Scripture to justify the use of marijuana. There are also people who claim to know Christ and use Scripture to justify everything from racial hatred towards others to turning a deaf ear to the cries of the immigrant and the poor. Not everyone who says “Lord, Lord,” will enter the kingdom of God (Matthew 7:21).

    (You sure seem to hate the fact that people are able to chose to use cannabis as medicine.)

    Scripture never mentions marijuana directly. You will not find it on the pages of either the Hebrew or the Greek texts. But then, neither are oranges, bananas, peaches, asparagus, spinach, artichokes, potatoes, tomatoes, rosary peas, castor beans (perhaps the most poisonous plant known to man), yews, poison ivy, poison oak, and numerous other plants both good and bad for health.

    (It mentions the herb bearing seed I would take that to mean grain and hemp seed is grain)

    There are some who see Exodus 30:23 as a direct reference to marijuana. They cite Sula Benet, an etymologist from Poland who concluded in 1936 that the Hebrew words “q’nah-bosem” found at Exodus 30:23 were etymologically related to “cannabis” and then reached the further conclusion that the anointing oil included marijuana. She noted the similarities with words from other Middle Eastern language groups. She noted that the word could be used to reference a reed plant or a hemp plant, but she reached the definite conclusion that in the Exodus passage it meant the hemp plant.

    (Thank you for showing the historical use of hemp preacher)

    (As this is an article you sent it is not surprising there is an error.)
    Genesis 41:22 I also saw in my dream seven ears growing on one stalk, full and good

    “It cannot be seen here as a reference to marijuana as marijuana does not have heads of grain and having seven heads on a marijuana plant would not be a sign of super-abundance required by the passage.”

    Obliviously this person has never seen a hemp plant grown for seed. I have. I have even driven a combine through a hemp field taking off the crop. We were told to keep the header high to avoid wrapping the stalk in the bearings. “leave the lower seed God put it there so the birds can eat too ” is what the farmer from France who had grown hemp all his life said. We got yields as high as 1400 lbs of seed grain per acre. Big heads on the stalk as fat as your forearm packed with seed. Average yield is about 500- 900 lbs per acre, and if they are broadcast seeded thinly the plants look like Christmas trees with many fat heads of seed. Sounds like a great description. of a female hemp plant ready to be harvested. I fact I do not know of many grain plants that fit that description other than hemp.

    Conspicuously absent from your link is Gen. 1 29 And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food.

    pretty selective use of Scripture on the authors part kind of like you?

    Give up yet preacher?

  45. Mark Chenier   August 13, 2011 at 11:01 PM

    What it boils down to is this preacher. If we end the prohibition of cannabis the price will drop the profit motive will vanish the criminals will find something else to do. Those who need this medicine are starting to be able to get it already. The laws are changing, slowly but none the less they are changing. You can rant and scream all you want but you cannot stop this. Its Gods will. In spite of what you would have us believe.

  46. Mark Chenier   August 14, 2011 at 10:21 AM

    preacher I want to thank you for that last link I started reading the comments on the post

    http://truthsaves.org/whatever/truthsaves/does-the-bible-talk-about-marijuana/

    maybe you should read them too
    IMHO you have turned more people away from being Christians by your intolerance than you have brought into the fold.

  47. Furtz   August 14, 2011 at 11:31 AM

    Mark, I’m sure you’ll disagree with me, but given my experiences with Christianity, I’d say that the preacher might be unwittingly serving a purpose.

  48. Mark Chenier   August 14, 2011 at 12:07 PM

    No Furtz I do agree with you he is unwittingly serving a purpose. Unfortunately for him it is not the purpose he wants to serve. I think the message of Christianity is good. Love thy neighbor help others etc. Its just sometimes some get over excited and forget that each person must find their own way. Then ego takes over and they power trip its like a drug to them. Like any addict preacher needs his fix.

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