OXFORD FILM FESTIVAL 2011
By Don Simpson | February 6, 2011
Director: Len Richmond
Writer: Len Richmond
Narrator: Peter Coyote
Marijuana has been used by human beings since their early days on earth, probably for its high protein and Omega-3 content; there is even scientific speculation that marijuana may have even triggered a great leap forward in early human brain function. Cannabis was a popular medicine in the United States until 1937 when legislation passed to prohibit doctors from prescribing cannabis. (It is probably no coincidence that this is when mass produced medicine and health care was evolving into a big business.)
Cannabis has been scientifically proven as anti-inflammatory, anti-spasmodic, and anti-bacterial; it can be used to treat depression, traumatic stress syndrome, chronic pain, glaucoma, migraines, multiple sclerosis, as well as several other medical conditions. Len Richmond’s What If Cannabis Cured Cancer, however, focuses on the anti-cancer properties of cannabis.
The human body has an existing endocannabinoid system (yes, we have had marijuana in our bodies since birth) to help eradicate tumors, but ever since the industrial age there have been far too many toxins and free radicals for our body’s natural system to keep up. The theory discussed in What If Cannabis Cured Cancer is that the cannabinoids found in the cannibas plant can effectively help our existing endocannabinoid system fight cancer. More importantly, the cannabinoids are able to eradicate cancer cells without harming the human body’s healthy cells. Sure this might all sound like a stoner’s diatribe from an outtake of Dazed and Confused, but Richmond reveals that there is significant scientific research that backs this theory.
Utilizing original and archival footage, What If Cannabis Cured Cancer presents a very convincing argument that marijuana does possess significant medicinal properties and should be decriminalized (at least for medicinal purposes). Whether this evidence will ever be accepted as scientific proof is a completely different story…
Other than the sixteen states with existing medical marijuana legislation (Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington), why is this miracle drug still considered to be illegal in the United States? Classified as a Schedule I drug (alongside GHB and heroin) under the federal Controlled Substances Act of 1970, marijuana is considered to have a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical uses (cocaine is classified as Schedule II because it has accepted medical uses) — yet both claims have been repeatedly proven to be untrue. Nicotine and alcohol have been proven time and time again to be much more dangerous drugs (with little to no medicinal value), yet they are legal in our society and accepted as safe.
After watching What If Cannabis Cured Cancer, I am really beginning to question my decision to not smoke marijuana; not only is it good for you, but it makes you feel really great — and I mean really great! How many other forms of medicine can make that claim? Hey, don’t Bogart that joint, my friend…