Dr. Lester Grinspoon


September 19th, 2009 By: Russ Belville, NORML Outreach Coordinator

NORML is proud to confirm that Dr. Lester Grinspoon will be delivering the luncheon remarks (via skype) at the 2009 National Conference in San Francisco, CA.

Dr. Grinspoon is Associate Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, and served for 40 years as Senior Psychiatrist at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center in Boston. A Fellow of both the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Psychiatric Association, he was the founding editor of both the Annual Review of Psychiatry and the Harvard Mental Health Letter.

He is the author or co-author of over 160 journal articles, including his 1995 commentary in the Journal of the American Medical Association entitled “Marihuana as Medicine: A Plea for Reconsideration.” His first book, Marihuana Reconsidered, originally published in 1971 by Harvard University Press, was recently republished as a classic. His latest book, Marihuana, the Forbidden Medicine, co-authored with James B. Bakalar, was published by Yale University Press in 1993 (revised and expanded edition, 1997) and has now been translated into ten languages. Dr. Grinspoon was also a reviewer of the 1999 Institute of Medicine report, “Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base.”

In 1990 Dr. Grinspoon received the Alfred R. Lindesmith Award for Achievement in the Field of Scholarship and Writing from the Drug Policy Foundation (now Alliance) in Washington, DC. He presently serves on NORML’s Advisory Board and maintains www.marijuana-uses.com, which chronicles real life stories of people who have had positive “non-medical” experiences with marijuana.

“When I first began to study marijuana in 1967, I naïvely believed that its only use was as a recreational drug,” says Grinspoon. “I soon came to understand that it also had a second important utility, as a medicine, and I published (along with James B. Bakalar) Marijuana, the Forbidden Medicine. Just as penicillin, after its discovery as an antibiotic in 1941, was soon hailed as a wonder drug because of its limited toxicity, its versatility in treating a number of different kinds of symptoms and syndromes, and its limited cost, we believe that marijuana, for the same three reasons, will eventually be hailed as a wonder medicine. Over the last decade and a half I have come to believe that there is a third category of marijuana use –enhancement.”

Lester Grinspoon says, “Yes we cannabis” and so should you! Register for NORML’s 38th annual conference, taking place September 24-26 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in downtown San Francisco. For registration information, please visit: http://www.norml.org/conference.

More about Dr. Lester Grinspoon:

Dr. Lester Grinspoon’s Marijuana Uses webpage: http://marijuana-uses.com/index.html

JAMA: Marihuana as Medicine: A Plea for Reconsideration: http://www.csdp.org/kz/tlcjama.html

Boston Globe: Marijuana as Wonder Drug: http://www.rxmarijuana.com/wonder_drug.htm



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