The City of Berkeley, Calif., recently announced that medical marijuana dispensaries will have to donate two percent of their cannabis to low-income people beginning in August 2015.
According to The New York Times, the Berkeley City Council unanimously approved the new law, which will help poor residents who cannot afford medical marijuana that can sell for $400 an ounce.
Medical marijuana has been found to be extremely helpful for adults and children who suffer seizures. CNN reported last year, "Scientists think the CBD [in marijuana] quiets the excessive electrical and chemical activity in the brain that causes seizures."
The Epilepsy Foundation issued a statement earlier this year that supported the "rights of patients and families living with seizures and epilepsy to access physician directed care, including medical marijuana."
However, International Faith Based Coalition President Bishop Ron Allen claimed on Fox News this morning that marijuana would increase crime and poverty in Berkeley, notes RawStory.com (video below).
“I think it’s ludicrous over-the-top madness,” Allen told "Fox & Friends" co-host Brian Kilmeade. “Why would Berkeley City Council want to keep their poverty-stricken underserved high, in poverty and lethargic. It’s absolutely mind boggling, and absolutely ridiculous for Berkeley City Council to make such a suggestion, and then to put this in motion.”
Later in the program, Bishop Allen claimed that marijuana, which is a depressant, had the "same effects" as cocaine, which is a stimulant.
“Research tells us that marijuana has the same effects on the pleasure central system in the brain as heroin, cocaine, crack cocaine,” said Bishop Allen. “And so, it’s no difference at all.”
“Berkeley City Council must have been high to make this decision, to cause generational poverty,” stated Bishop Allen. “Berkeley has not helped their city at all. In fact, it pushed it deeper into a depression, lethargicy [SIC], a criminal mind.”
RawStory.com notes that Mason Tvert, of the Marijuana Policy Project, told Bishop Allen, “With all due respect, your suggestion that marijuana has the same effect as heroin and crack cocaine really just suggests that you don’t know what you’re talking about. I mean, the fact is marijuana has proven to be less toxic and less addictive, not only than those drugs, but than alcohol.”
“The fact is that medical associations across the country, and more than 80 percent of Americans think marijuana can help seriously ill people,” added Tvert.
Kilmeade worried that “people are abusing the medical marijuana system, they’re using it for recreation purposes, and doctors are just complicit, and this plays into the cycle.”
Oddly, Kilmeade made no mention of the mass abuse of legal prescription pain killers by Americans.
"Overdoses involving prescription painkillers are at epidemic levels and now kill more Americans than heroin and cocaine combined," Thomas Frieden, Director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, stated in 2011.
In 2012, the BBC reported that Americans consume 80 percent of the world's legal prescription painkillers.