Through this series, CNN continues to advance the narrative that marijuana is a medicine. CNN is simply repeating an oft-cited talking point used by the marijuana industry and supporters of legalization. This installment of the series focuses on the elderly population, touting marijuana as an alternative to traditional FDA-approved medications. The episode's promo video highlights marijuana's purported benefits as "extraordinary" and "magic."
Despite the suggestion in this upcoming episode that marijuana is a safe alternative to prescription medications, including opioids, today’s high-potency THC products are not harmless. Notably, the FDA has not approved marijuana for the treatment of any condition or disease. These recreational products are often near-pure THC concentrates that are potentially addictive and produce mind-altering effects on users. Scientific research has linked the use of marijuana, particularly high-potency products, to numerous negative mental and physical health effects among all populations, age groups, ethnicities, and economic groups. These outcomes include anxiety, depression, psychosis, and schizophrenia, in addition to cannabis use disorder.
Despite every major medical association's opposition to the idea that marijuana is medicine, CNN continues to proliferate false ideas about the harmlessness of marijuana, now to one of our most vulnerable groups. Please tell CNN to listen to the science: marijuana is not medicine and it is not a risk-free drug.
We invite you to submit feedback directly to CNN on their website form here.
Choose the "Editorial Feedback" option in the "Topic" dropdown box.
Choose the "CNN Shows" option in the "Feedback" dropdown box.
Here is a sample message you can copy and paste into the "Comment" portion of the form on the CNN website:
I am writing this letter to voice my concern over the one-sided coverage your network is advancing through Dr. Sanjay Gupta’s series “Weed 7: A Senior Moment.” The Weed series proliferates a false and concerning narrative that marijuana is safe and risk-free and glorifies marijuana use by senior citizens. In reality, marijuana use is linked to numerous health-related harms and has potentially dangerous drug interactions.
The move to normalize marijuana is not backed by science. Instead, it is pushed by multi-billion dollar corporations that stand to make a profit from the legalization and commercialization of marijuana. Despite the claim in Dr. Gupta’s episode that marijuana's purported effects are "magic" and "extraordinary," every major medical association agrees that marijuana is not harmless and that it should not be legalized. Notably, the FDA has not approved marijuana for the treatment of any condition or disease.
Marijuana products are often near-pure THC concentrates that are addictive and produce mind-altering effects on users. Scientific research has linked the use of marijuana, particularly high-potency products, to numerous negative mental and physical health effects among all populations, age groups, ethnicities, and economic groups. These outcomes include anxiety, depression, psychosis, and schizophrenia, in addition to cannabis use disorder.
Furthermore, the interactions between marijuana and many of the common medications taken by seniors, including heart medications, blood pressure medications, and diabetes medications, are largely unknown. The use of marijuana by seniors may place them in uniquely harmful situations.
Glorifying marijuana use is dangerous and at odds with the goal of promoting public health. I hope you will reconsider airing one-sided programming like this in the future.
We also invite you to share this on social media by tweeting your disapproval @CNN directly.
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