Dear Editor,

After reading “Peshtigo couple faces drug trafficking charges” in the Jan. 24 EagleHerald, I was disappointed to not see anything about how these synthetic cannabinoids were created. It was tax dollars that funded the operation through a National Institute for Drug Abuse (NIDA) grant.

Why was such a grant issued? It was issued to create synthetic cannabinoid compounds to mimic natural marijuana’s medicinal qualities. It was hoped at the time such synthetic compounds would lead to “developing treatments for pain and inflammation and some skin cancers.” See Los Angeles Times article, “Scientist’s research produces a dangerous high.” Instead, a Frankenstein like monster was created.

Since these monster cannabinoids — that are 10 times more potent than natural marijuana — were created and made available to the public, the scientist behind the NIDA project has called for the full legalization of natural marijuana so people can use it in place of the dangerous synthetics he created. He admits real marijuana is much safer than his creation. See ABC News article, “Legalize Marijuana, Says Inventor of ‘Spice’ Chemicals.”

In my opinion, we should do exactly as the scientist says and fully legalize natural marijuana before Big Pharma can successfully create a synthetic cannabinoid it can patent and market at an exorbitant price like it does other drugs. There’s also the risk that Big Pharma will create another synthetic monster that is much worse.


William Swenson