AN opposition solon expressed strong opposition to the proposed Marijuana law, which has reached in the plenary for deliberation.
Buhay Rep. Lito Atienza, Deputy Minority Leader, said the House Bill 6517, or the proposed Act Providing Filipinos Right of Access to Medical Marijuana,
will turn the Philippines into “zombie” nation.
Atienza warned strongly against the “backdoor decriminalization” of marijuana through a proposed law that would encourage the supposed medicinal use of the highly addictive banned drug.
“If other countries wish to destroy themselves by enabling medical marijuana, then let them create their own problems. We Filipinos certainly do not want to degenerate into a nation of zombies,” Atienza said.
The 63-member House committee on health endorsed the Cannabis Act, which main purpose is to allow Filipinos to avail of marijuana for therapeutic purposes.
“We expect the bill to be put to the floor when Congress resumes session next month, and we intend to fight it off forcefully,” Atienza said.
The Philippine Medical Association, the professional organization of Filipino physicians, has rejected the bill outright, declaring it “contrary to the policy of the State to safeguard the well-being of its citizenry.”
“Advocates of the bill argue that Filipino families should be allowed to use marijuana to provide artificial, mind-altering ‘highs’ to depressed teenagers as well as children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, when what these vulnerable kids truly need and deserve is extra loving care and emotional support,” Atienza said.
Atienza warned that criminal drug traffickers are bound to exploit ‘medical marijuana’ as cover to boost the recreational use of the drug and enlarge their nefarious trade.
“What makes marijuana even more menacing is that many young Filipinos are known to first experiment on the substance, before they eventually use harder drugs,” Atienza said.
“Marijuana is a gateway drug. Pushers in schools purposely use marijuana to entice students to use drugs for the first time, before they are introduced to shabu,” he added.