Feds offer $3 million to find cure for “marijuana addiction”

By Oscar Pascual |

The federal government is ready to pay millions to remedy marijuana addiction. The answer? Yet another pharmaceutical drug.

The National Institute on Drug Addiction (NIDA), alongside the National Institutes of Health (NIH), have partnered to offer $3 million in cash for scientists and doctors to find a cure for people who say they’re addicted to cannabis, reports the Daily Beast.

“Cannabis use is an increasing public health concern in the United States that requires immediate attention,” the drug agency stated in a proposal published earlier in June. “Given the high prevalence of marijuana use and its associated disorders and the large number of people who seek treatment, there is a critical need to discover and develop safe and effective treatments for CUDs,” otherwise referred to as Cannabis Use Disorders.

The offer of the huge cash reward suggests that cannabis addiction is a widespread problem. That would fly in the face of the agency’s own data that shows marijuana’s addiction rate is only nine percent, well below tobacco and alcohol, both of which carry the risk of dying via an overdose.

Regardless, NIDA and NIH seem to think that the most serious symptoms stemming from pot addiction — such as irritability, restlessness, and cravings — are worth millions.

Perhaps the main reason behind the million-dollar offer for the cure is the fact that there just isn’t one out there. As marijuana laws continue to spread throughout the states, a medicine touted as a cure for pot addiction could easily generate as much cash as methadone or nicotine patches.

NIDA themselves pointed out that while “there are medications approved by the FDA for the treatment of nicotine and opiate dependence, there are no FDA approved medications for CUDs.”

Not surprisingly, the cash offer is just giving prohibitionists another good reason to rally against legalizing marijuana.

“The entire medical community is aware of marijuana addiction and how big a problem it is,” said Dr. Stuart Gitlow of the American Society of Addiction Medicine, in an interview with High Times.

Gitlow also contends that alcohol prohibition in America was actually a success.

“There was a per capita drop in the consumption of alcohol, in accidents related to alcohol, and liver disease was reduced by two-thirds,” Gitlow told the Times. “After it ended, all of these stats went back to where they were before.”

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