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Feb-02-2009 23:34TweetFollow @OregonNews
Marijuana Reseacher Par Excellence Dr. Billy Ray Martin (1943-2008)Dr. Phillip Leveque Salem-News.com
A memorial to a man who may have helped the medical marijuana movement without meaning to.
(MOLALLA, Ore.) - Dr. Martin was a Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology at The Medical College of Virginia in Richmond, Virginia. He spent about the last thirty years of his life studying, experimenting (with rats) and lecturing/testifying about the dangers of marijuana.
He testified at the Canadian Parliament about marijuana dangers for a fee of $9000 dollars. His research was paid for by the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) and all that brought in gobs of money – so he could concentrate on the subject.
A real conundrum was the fact that he owned U.S. Patents for medical cannabis/marijuana delivering systems for this “dangerous marijuana”.
He was instrumental in keeping marijuana use illegal in Virginia and many other states.
He had worked with Dr. Mechoulam, the discoverer of many of the positive medical attributes of cannabis/marijuana and an advocate for its medical use and he had worked with other scientists who also advocated its medical use.
It is really confusing to me that Dr. Martin should have obviously known that maybe 80 million Americans had used it and there was little or minimal danger or harm to its use.
At the same time NIDA was investing billions of dollars in the “drug war” and as long as he could perform research which could harm lab rats it was a good way to go.
The fact that he owned a patent for medical marijuana use says an awful lot to me.
In my 4 thousand plus MJ patients none have ever mentioned any harm. Contrarily they say it’s the best drug they have ever used.
Dr. Martin, possibly inadvertently inspired other scientists and physicians to pay attention to both the possible hazards of marijuana which are minimal but also the probability that it DID have medical value.
He certainly engendered great publicity on the subject.
Now at least 400 thousand patients are using MJ legally in 13 states with more soon to come.
Got a question or comment for Dr. Leveque?
More information on the history of Dr. Leveque can be found in his book, General Patton's Dogface Soldier of WWII about his own experiences "from a foxhole".
If you are a World War II history buff, you don't want to miss it.
Watch for more streaming video question and answer segments about medical marijuana with Bonnie King and Dr. Phil Leveque.
Dr. Leveque INTERVIEWS & ARTICLES
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