Takes a Big Man To Admit His Mistakes


Marijuana and Dr. Gupta

CNN is not the first place I look to when seeking out unbiased news. I find they've gone from covering breaking events to evangelizing ever more conservative positions and biased reports. This includes all types of subjects, not just politics. Entertainment, fashion, medicine and science overall. They have staked out a position slightly to the left of Fox News and way to the right of MSNBC. Truth now runs a distant second in their priorities. They're one step away from being a parody. Fairness and journalism don't even make the top five of their concerns. Real news is filler for their dog and pony shows.

I'm not saying everyone there is a fraud -- I'm not saying they aren't either. After all, most of the faces of CNN are just that, faces. They don't write, investigate nor even do research. They're news readers. We know them for their personalities, not their genuine in depth investigation. Yet they do have some people on staff who, from time to time, provide expertise in their particular field.

Take Dr. Sanjay Gupta. He has the expertise and from time to time he flexes it, sharing with us the benefits or dangers of our lifestyles. He's trusted enough as an expert that President Obama wanted him as Surgeon General of the United States, a position he refused. He's very likable and generally well-versed in his particular reports. But, on occasion he's human like all of us. He falls for the corporate BS which passes as fact or in the case I'm going to bring up, the science behind medicine.

Dr. G has for years startled me and many when he's been so blatantly "used" by CNN as a source to quote on the harm and damage that is produced by pot. He's attacked marijuana as a dangerous drug, making arguments justifying it's classification as a schedule one drug. Now he's reversed fields and gone in the opposite direction.

Why? How? Perhaps to better understand things, we should see what the DEA uses as criteria for it's classifications of drugs. There currently are five schedules or groups. Here's the DEA's definition of drug schedules in general:

Drugs, substances, and certain chemicals used to make drugs are classified into five (5) distinct categories or schedules depending upon the drug’s acceptable medical use and the drug’s abuse or dependency potential.

That seems to be the ground rules. So Dr. Gupta has been justifying the classification of Marijuana as a schedule one drug. Here's what falls into that top category.

Schedule I

Schedule I drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Schedule I drugs are the most dangerous drugs of all the drug schedules with potentially severe psychological or physical dependence. Some examples of Schedule I drugs are: heroin, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), marijuana (cannabis), 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (ecstasy), methaqualone, and peyote.

Basically everything else falls into lesser categories. Those are schedules two through five. Schedule five has minor, over the counter medications like anti-diharreals and cough syrups.  But look at the next to lowest classification:

Schedule IV

Drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with a low potential for abuse and low risk of dependence. Some examples of Schedule IV drugs are: Xanax, Soma, Darvon, Darvocet, Valium, Ativan, Talwin, Ambien.

Surprisingly, alcohol, doesn't appear anywhere on any of the schedules. So apparently there's no dependency issues with booze. That's a relief. Now I don't know about you, but I'd surely think that a scientific mind like Dr G's would see that cannabis is much more aligned to a type IV classification than to heroin, cocaine and crack. People aren't OD'ing on ganja. They're not losing their minds over simple smoke. But, CNN's paid medical propagandist for years has been speaking out against the demonic weed, justifying it as dangerous.

Until now.

A few days ago Sanjay decided to come clean. Wednesday he wrote a CNN op ed that included this:

I mistakenly believed the Drug Enforcement Agency listed marijuana as a schedule 1 substance because of sound scientific proof. Surely, they must have quality reasoning as to why marijuana is in the category of the most dangerous drugs that have "no accepted medicinal use and a high potential for abuse."

They didn't have the science to support that claim, and I now know that when it comes to marijuana neither of those things are true. It doesn't have a high potential for abuse, and there are very legitimate medical applications. In fact, sometimes marijuana is the only thing that works.

Well, it takes some big man to not only admit his mistakes, but to do something about it. He's making amends for misleading everybody with a new special. Here's a peek inside:

With this special, Dr. Gupta has shot up in my eyes. Now hopefully he'll become a leader. Hopefully gone are his days of  being a follower of diatribe and dogma fed him by the DEA and other non medical agencies. He's free to share with us his professional knowledge whether I agree with it or not. Just make it real, Sanjay. You deserve a second chance.