Why Legal Pot is Better Than the Ice Bucket Challenge for ALS


The ice bucket challenge has raised a huge amount of awareness for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) or "Lou Gehrig's Disease," which affects about 30,000 Americans.

Writing in The Hill, Andrew Gargano talks about an existing, effective way to ameliorate the disease's devastating symptoms: Medical marijuana.

A number of studies have shown that cannabis functions in many ways that are beneficial to those with ALS, from serving as an analgesic to acting as a soothing muscle relaxant. Cannabis also functions as a saliva reducer, and so it has the ability to reduce symptoms of uncontrollable drooling that is common among those with ALS. Additionally, cannabis has been found successful in use as an antidepressant, results which have also been confirmed by an anonymous, self-reported survey of ALS patients conducted by the the MDA/ALS Center at the University of Washington.

Most importantly, however, is that a 2010 study found that cannabis offered anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotective effects when tested on laboratory mice. The researchers found that cannabis slowed the progression of the disease and prolonged cell survival, ultimately concluding that "it is reasonable to think that cannabis might significantly slow the progression of ALS, potentially extending life expectancy and substantially reducing the overall burden of the disease."

While this information may seem incredibly relieving to anyone who suffers from ALS, only 34 percent of Americans live in the 23 states, and the District of Columbia, that currently recognize the important medical uses of cannabis.

Read the whole thing.

Hat Tip: Students for Liberty Twitter feed.

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  1. Ice-Bucket Challenge: A public display of false piety, intended not to do good, but to appear socially acceptable to those of like mind. It also proves that Mark Zuckerberg is all-powerful.

    1. My mom just nominated me. In light if this article I’ll just make a gravity bong out of the bucket and take a few rips for charity.

    2. This looks smart and erudite, but it’s really just shallow nonsense.

  2. Too many people throw cold water on legalizing pot.

  3. I never even knew what that ice bucket challenge was about. Everybody just kept posting vidoes saying here’s my ice bucket challenge. All I became AWARE of was that some people wanted to film themselves pouring ice water on their heads and they wanted the world to know. Only one video even had the initials of ALS, and it was the most recent one in my history. I get the feeling that many who partook in the challenge didn’t know they were supposed to raise awareness for anything. It was just a meme to them, something they could get their five minutes of facebook fame from. And if that is true, I say good going, I think that an attempt to make a meme to raise awareness failed, it only created a meme, but no awareness was raised. Defeats the purpose if you ask me. This is a much better way to raise awareness.

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