- 1. Federal law prohibits the transport of medical cannabis across the United States in violation of the constitutional rights of Alexis Bortell, a 12-year-old child with epilepsy
Federal law prohibits the transport of medical cannabis across the United States in violation of the constitutional rights of Alexis Bortell, a 12-year-old child with epilepsy
Twelve-year-old Alexis Bortell uses a cannabis oil called Haleigh's Hope to prevent life-threatening seizures… She takes the oil by mouth twice a day and always has a THC vaporizer on hand. In case she experiences a pre-epileptic event… Her seizures are less since moving from Texa to Colorado… When doctors in Texas left her with no other option but to offer an experimental lobotomy. His parents therefore moved to Colorado, to a greener space… Cannabis is undoubtedly better than removing part of the brain… But the matter does not end there, constitutional rights are at stake under federal law which interferes. But Alexis' case could change the history of cannabis in the United States.
As evidenced by the experience of Alexis Bortell, a twelve-year-old girl who escaped an experimental lobotomy, cannabis is imposed with a "renewed" medicine, ethical, but which does not suit the federal mentality ...
“I have been seizure free for two years from my cannabis medication,” says Bortell, who is now in grade six. “It helped me do well in school because I don't have to go to the nurse every day because of my seizures. There were no drugs in Texas that would stop my seizures and not only that, they had horrible effects worse than the seizure "
Alexis Bortell received an invitation from the NORML to put pressure on its representatives in Washington DC last September. But she couldn't go… Indeed Alexis cannot travel without committing what the state calls a federal crime. This is by transporting a Schedule I narcotic across state roads. Which may interfere with the constitutional rights of the patient ...
Plus even if she could travel to DC - where marijuana is medically and recreationally legal. Indeed, she could not carry drugs on the "federal" lands. This concerning the Capitol, national parks, monuments and military bases (where his father works as a military doctor ...)
Complaint against the federal government
Now, Bortell is one of five plaintiffs in a lawsuit against the federal government. And his lawyers argue that the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), which classifies cannabis as illegal, infringes on various constitutional rights.
"This is not just a CSA case, it is a civil rights case that emphasizes the rights of individuals who use life-saving drugs to preserve their lives and health." Said Bortell's attorney, Michael Hiller, professor of constitutional law at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. "It's not just about cannabis, it's about the ability of people to exercise their free speech rights, to petition the government for First Amendment redress."
Michael Hiller, Lauren Rudick, Joseph Bondy and David Holland, co-lawyers, filed a lawsuit in September in the United States Court. And as the federal government is in the habit of doing, the accused - Jeff Sessions, the Department of Justice, Chuck Rosenberg, acting director of the Drug Enforcement Administration, the DEA itself and finally the United States of America - will file a petition on October 13 ...
An influential affair
As the complainant, Alexis Bortell a child with epilepsy represents the thousands of children with epilepsy. It could bring the legitimate defusing of cannabis to millions of people. But even broader interests are at stake… And the case could have ramifications across the country.
"If the court grants our assistance, asking for a declaration that the ASC is unconstitutional as applied." And directing the federal government to implement it. The case is very likely to have repercussions on tens of millions of people"says Mr. Hiller.
Lawyers argue that the ASC violates the constitutional rights of patients, and that the Schedule 1 filing is a hoax ...
"The explanation of why it is a Schedule I substance is based on lies and racism.Says Holland, executive and legal director of NORML and former advisor to High Times magazine.
In their complaint, the lawyers allude to the Last 10 years of history, highlighting the different ways in which humans have used cannabis. The Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution on hemp paper, while pharmacists sold tinctures of marijuana over the counter.
In the 1920s and 1930s, cannabis became more closely associated with Mexican immigrants and African American jazz musicians. In 1937, the Federal Bureau of Narcotics and Director Harry Anslinger drafted the Marihuana Tax Act… Imposing criminal penalties on the possession, production and sale of cannabis, and from the modern day war on drugs.
In the 1960s and 1970s, cannabis became the common denominator of anti-Vietnam War protesters and radical groups like the Black Panthers. John Ehrlichman, Nixon's right-hand man, came out decades later to explain that the criminalization of marijuana was a way to criminalize blacks and hippies ...
When the ASC was adopted in 1971, marijuana was listed in Schedule I only "temporarily". Even if, by definition, it did not correspond to the category described ... Today, blacks and Latinos are still disproportionately victims of the prohibition.
There is a gap between what the government claims legallyt and how does cannabis work. The government has a patent on cannabis for the treatment of diseases. Namely, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, HIV-induced dementia, and autoimmune diseases… And under US patent law, you cannot apply for another patent. Unless you can demonstrate the usefulness of what you are looking for ...
“The government got a patent for cannabis based on the fact that it works,” Hiller says. In addition, since 1978, the federal government has been sending joints to medical patients under an IND (Investigational New Drug) program ”
In 2014, the Treasury Department issued guidance to banks, advising them on how to work with cannabis companies. Meanwhile, 29 states and three territories allow everyone to use cannabis for medicinal or recreational purposes. Which means that more than 60% of the population has access to this plant.
“It makes no sense for the government to classify cannabis as such a dangerous drug. It can't even be safely tested while still encouraging companies to do business with the cannabis industry, ”says Hiller. “It makes no sense that the federal government has a medical patent. Nor that he has been distributing cannabis to patients for almost 40 years through the IND program. And while asserting that it has no medical efficacy and that cannabis can cause brain damage ”
Constitutional rights questioned
Regardless of who wins the case, the losing party is sure to appeal, according to Bondy.
“This trial represents the truth,” says Bondy, a criminal defense attorney who is an expert in federal cannabis law. “Marijuana has a recognized medical purpose. For the government to persist in the position that it is not stupid. "-" These issues are so important to the public interest, so important to constitutional guarantees, that full proof is required. We welcome this as an opportunity to demonstrate fully and fairly that we are right. "
The constitutional rights of all American patients are going to be change thanks to this girl. But in the meantime, Alexis Bortell must always choose between breaking the law and preserving his own life.
“Every time I look in my class, I think of my classmates when we grow up, but I can't do anything because the government thinks I'm bad,” she says. "I know they are wrong, I hope we can win this case, if that happens maybe I can be a doctor or have to run for the legislature." "