Huntsman Sr. interested in trying medical marijuana for his pain

Billionaire philanthropist also criticized the stigma surrounding the drug

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  • TOO Fairview, UT
    July 19, 2017 2:43 a.m.


    I had a comment with 3 article titles to look up. However, I don't know if the people at DN will post it.

    Needless to say, it does affect the receptors and neurotransmitters where anesthesia works. It affects the release of acetylcholine, which is a neurotransmitter and is needed to "unparalyze" a person after anesthesia. It affects receptors in your brain that are triggered with a drug we call propofol.

    Don't take my word for it. If you have an anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist acquaintance, ask them.
    I have a colleague at my work who just left a hospital in CO. She left because people are not wanting to care for these addicted people anymore. They're unpleasant, are not easy to put under anesthesia, and vital signs can become extremely unstable.
    Marijuana affects fetuses who come out going through withdrawals. Marijuana does in fact damage lung tissue as well.
    Again, don't take my word for it. But to say I am lying or making stuff up, especially when I have seen it multiple times as well as my colleagues may not be the best way to try to make your case. If you have not seen it, you can't tell someone else that what they actually experience is not true.

  • TOO Fairview, UT
    July 18, 2017 6:18 p.m.

    "Induction dose of propofol in patients using cannibis"

    "Inhibition of hippocampal acetylcholine release after acute and repeated Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol in rats"

    "Prolonged cannabinoid exposure alters GABA(A) receptor mediated synaptic function in cultured hippocampal neurons."

    It alters the way the drug works. Just as if you take opioid all the time, your body needs more and more. The same happens with marijuana. Your body will require more drug to get the same result.
    Healthcare professionals don't just ask what you are taking for fun. It can be a matter of life and death.

  • Prometheus Platypus Orem, UT
    July 18, 2017 5:11 p.m.

    Too said: "These side effects have not been "proven" false. Again, I see it EVERYDAY! "

    That's called anecdotal evidence and proves nothing more than the person who says it works for them.

    Since your a professional, I assume you will be able to provide a reference for your assertions that Cannabis effects on General anesthesia, since I couldn't find any studies that back you up. I did find several that claim it doesn't have an effect.

  • TOO Fairview, UT
    July 18, 2017 12:12 p.m.


    These are facts. I am the one who puts these people to sleep and sees them on a daily basis when they come in.

    On average, it takes double the amount of anesthesia to put my patients under if they smoke pot vs a person who does not if they are the same weight/height.

    Explain to me how that occurs? Is it just a coincidence that person A, B, and C who smoke pot are harder for me to put to sleep vs person D, E, and F? Same size, same medication.

    Cannabis does have an overdose. Will it kill you? Maybe not. However, when you are taking more than what is necessary or what your body "needs", that is considered an overdose, and you do lose your capacity to think, perform, and function.

    These side effects have not been "proven" false. Again, I see it EVERYDAY! And I am a natural herbal user, not big pharma. I don't take pain meds or opiates. I like your assuming that because I do actually have experience in this field, that I work for the pharma. Talk about a stereotype.

  • Prometheus Platypus Orem, UT
    July 18, 2017 9:33 a.m.

    TOO - claims Fact's that are no such thing, just more lies.

    If these are facts, than references for even a portion of your nonsense will suffice.

    Opiates have easily obtainable lethal overdose limits, Cannabis does not.
    Your operation room stories are just that, are you actually saying cannabis blocks opiates?

    Your side effects have been proven false, not true since the fake research of the 70's was used as propaganda.

    Making stuff up or using dubious info, doesn't help your crusade against natural remedies, in favor of deadly opiates and big pharmacy, whom I suspect you write this propaganda for.

  • Fullypresent Salt Lake City, UT
    July 18, 2017 12:40 a.m.

    He has given so much to this community and state let him be part of the research on adults. He has very difficult health conditions that would at least warrant him being able to be part of the research if he wants to be. It is unfortunate that all the rec users have ruined it for getting medical marijuana legalized in all 50 states for certain medical conditions and chronic pain. We know it can't be any worse for people than what all the legal drugs are doing to them in the way of side effects and damage to their organs and other parts of their bodies.

  • TOO Fairview, UT
    July 17, 2017 2:36 p.m.

    I really think it's hilarious how people who speak about marijuana feel they have all the "facts".

    "Fact": It's safer than opioids.

    Fact: a person who smokes pot requires more medication for surgery to put them under anesthesia. This means that it can prolong hospital stays and wake up times.

    "Fact": there are less side effects.

    Fact: Marijuana can lead to mental disorders such as bipolar, schizophrenia, and depression.

    "Fact": It's only medicinal use that we want, not recreational.

    Fact: Opioids are for only medicinal uses, yet look at the high rate of people who get them without a prescription. You don't think that will happen with marijuana?

    "Fact": It's less addicting.

    Fact: Marijuana leads to physical and mental addiction and dependence just like that of any other substance.

    Maybe people should actually speak to people who take care of others who use marijuana, instead of talking to people who use it. It's not a black and white issue. If your loved one is using marijuana, ask his/her physician just how much it affects the body.

  • Utah Girl Chronicles Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 17, 2017 1:26 p.m.

    @ Hope and Faith

    "Why can't Utah just be Utah? Why oppress us?"

    When it comes to chronic pain management, your ideals about a pristine, morally superior Utopian Utah fall on the deaf ears of many.

    The Women's Christian Temperance Union had 340,000 members in 1930 at the height of Prohibition. Drinking "old John Barleycorn" back then was considered a mortal sin by many.

    Now that organization has 5,000 members worldwide. Why has that group nearly gone extinct? Attitudes evolve. Attitudes are changing about marijuana.

    You may think Utahans may fall into a drug-infused moral Purgatory if recreational marijuana is legalized. If so, I'll send you a postcard from there to let you know things aren't really all that bad.

  • brotherJonathan SLC, UT
    July 17, 2017 11:04 a.m.

    LDSChurch spokesman Eric Hawkins-
    Sufficient scientific testing has been done_ to establish reasonable support its use

    (my) LDS Church, Catholics, US Supreme Court, Congress, Utah House& Senate,
    Utah Supreme Court, DOJ, 3 Utah Fed. Judges & most of you_

    Know the real issue: Citizen Right of Self-Determination_being Violated by
    UnConstitutional Drug Monopoly Law.

    Simply ask any expert this-
    1-If you believe that 'Controlled Substance Acts' (giving Doctors the power of government permit sales) violate equality
    Sign here:
    2- If you believe that 'Controlled Substance Acts' (giving Doctors the power of government permit sales) are lawful
    Sign here:
    1-doctors aren't under oath of office (Constitutional Oath to uphold citizen equality or be impartial in all their duties)

    2-Doctors sell Government Use Permits- Like the ATF - & are only private business venture.

    3-Doctors being private citizens- not under oath- get to keep the Gov. Permit fees, which are temporary causing strong monopoly powers with pharmacies- blocking free markets rules of pricing, sales & distribution to all citizens with equality.

    Once having this filed proof of citizen Equality Violation_
    You Must Speak up

  • Hope & Faith give us strength Utah County, UT
    July 16, 2017 10:49 p.m.

    Utah Girl Chronicles,

    You: "God grows marijuana naturally and it grows wild around here."
    Me: He grows poisonous plants too.

    You: "Marijuana is not addictive and there is no evidence of anyone ever dying from an overdose."
    Me: Yet you fins folks can't allow the normal FDA process here? Not all Doctors and Scientists agree on everything. So to even treat human consensus like it should dictate law is essentially a religion in itself, a state one. To force your view, just cause you get people to agree with you?

    Let Utah be Utah. One state in the union... just one- can't have our laws be different than the rest?

    The secular world and the liberal "all states have to obey the federal way" view is the most obscenely intolerant and anti-liberty position- even "threat to American democracy" we've ever seen in this country. You'll find that quote in the gay marriage ruling. But hey, go on without an ounce of concern for listening to the other side- the side that likes pluralism and tolerance for multiple points of view, multiple states with multiple definitions of legal substances.

    Why can't Utah just be Utah? Why oppress us?

  • Lia Sandy, UT
    July 16, 2017 9:12 p.m.

    Good for you, Jon! It works. We know.

  • Hope & Faith give us strength Utah County, UT
    July 15, 2017 9:14 p.m.

    The LDS Church statement:

    "Accordingly, we believe that society is best served by requiring marijuana to go through further research and the FDA approval process that all other drugs must go through before they are prescribed to patients."

    Are we really this foolish in our judgement? I read something once from Brigham Young that basically said if the church started accepting tea that the masses would sing Hallelujah. There's just no way to sugar coat it. You either believe or you don't. You either follow the Savior or harden your heart to Him and go your own way trusting the foolishness of man.

    The counsel we've received couldn't be more clear.

    What's more is that we have been so blessed by God that to turn away from such counsel is just insane. Not only that, everyone wants to do it as urgently as possible. This truly is a troubling time, and I can only say that harder times are ahead of us if we are this easily confused now- unless we turn around now. We need better drug enforcement in Utah. We need better rehabilitation of criminal activity.

    We so desperately need to remember where our blessings come from.

  • Utah Girl Chronicles Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 15, 2017 7:39 p.m.

    @ HopeandFaith

    'If only we had more faith in Jesus Christ and less faith in our own foolishness."

    God grows marijuana naturally and it grows wild around here. Opiates are made in laboratories. They can be highly addictive and even fatal. Marijuana is not addictive and there is no evidence of anyone ever dying from an overdose.

    For all the good Mr. Huntsman has done for the people of our state, I wish you could cut him some slack. Intolerance is not the way to go here. Mr. Huntsman isn't going to turn into a heroin addict. Chronic pain is no fun to deal with.

  • Tony1941 Winchester, VA
    July 15, 2017 3:14 p.m.

    Raw cannabis extracts likely contain a number of components that exert different effects, both beneficial and harmful. Considerable research is needed to identify and isolate the various components and purify them so as to provide specific beneficial effects while eliminating negative effects.

    Unfortunately, this area of research has been a political and regulatory football for many years due to the fact that marijuana is a drug of abuse that arguably is a gateway drug that can lead to addiction to opioids, cocaine, methamphetamines, etc.

  • 112358 Alpine, UT
    July 15, 2017 2:26 p.m.

    Mr. Huntsman should stick to making Big Mac clamshells. He's a terrible physician. Look no further than downtown SLC to see the damage wrought by drugs.

    Pot advocacy will buy Mr. Huntsman some fans among the pot crowd, but it will tarnish his legacy.

  • holly56 LOVELAND, CO
    July 15, 2017 1:19 p.m.

    Go for it, Brother Huntsman!

    My 65 year old husband uses it to sleep as he cannot sleep with the pain he bears - in the form of a cookie or a brownie. He lives with the pain during the day (also refuses opioids since they don't help). However, without sleep he ceases to function. And he is an active temple recommend holding LDS member,

    No, we did not ask permission for him to do so. We believe that the Lord has blessed him with something that works, compared to years and years (over thirty) of opiate use that did absolutely nothing for his pain and caused him to withdraw from family and life. And they are legal.

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    July 15, 2017 1:15 p.m.

    Which Quorum of the Seventy was Jon Hunstman Sr. in? The 420th?

  • Hope & Faith give us strength Utah County, UT
    July 15, 2017 12:14 p.m.

    If only we had more faith in Jesus Christ and less faith in our own foolishness.

    No matter how many billions Huntsman can dish out for research, it will not make him right. It does not make a pro-doctor more right than an against-doctor. Human consensus is nothing more than "wise" men agreeing on what they think is best. You know, cause that's never seen stupid as a result in our history. I mean, it wasn't long ago that most doctors were saying an Aspirin a day was a good thing. It wasn't long ago that marriage meant something else in this country. It wasn't long ago that the vast majority of secular "thinkers" changed their mind on just about any issue you can name (outside ridiculing religion of course).

    The LDS Church has called for more research to be done. This *would* be wisdom on our part to heed that warning. Instead of "stigma must end" arguments from the shame culture, I believe in caution and seeking the best solutions- not with world-ending paranoia that if a pill or oil isn't legalized tomorrow, life on Earth with somehow cease.

    Unfortunately the arrogant shaming stains our beautiful state and people all too regularly.

  • robin138 springfield, VA
    July 15, 2017 11:37 a.m.

    He should cross the border to Colorado, or travel to California. It would be easy enough for him to give it a try in those states. Not is Nevada, though. They run out!

  • Flashback Kearns, UT
    July 15, 2017 11:20 a.m.

    Question for Mr. Huntsman. If you want to use it, why don't you fund a study and some research in order to see if it actually effective? You have a few billion available. Put your money where your mouth is. The anecdotal evidence aside, this does need to be studied.

    If effective then ways could be developed to put it into pill form for use minus the really bad part of Hooch, the THC.

    I don't take opiods because I became addicted years ago while under a doctors care. I realized I was hooked and went cold turkey. Even though this addiction only lasted a month before I realized it, I rarely have taken them since. Ibuprofen my kill me faster but it works for me.

  • Jsnow111 Irschenberg, BY
    July 15, 2017 11:17 a.m.

    @jbejarano - In regards to this subject, the "what about the children" ruse lost its validity years ago... Yawn

    When science and facts don't match a prohibitionist narrative.. sadly fear-mongering and stonewalling are the only tactics left

  • peabody Steamboat Springs, CO
    July 15, 2017 10:53 a.m.

    Jon, you are always welcome to stay with me. We'll get you set up.

  • Stringer Bell Henderson, NV
    July 15, 2017 10:46 a.m.

    Poyman: "Of course he is... Maybe a pot night with the kids and grandkids for refreshment after Family Home Evening... Or maybe instead of stopping for pie and ice cream after a ward temple night he could have everyone over at the house for a quiet pot party."

    It would probably be better for them than "pie and ice cream." Look at the good side. You can get behind the efforts for Zion walls, giant air-shifters and numerous signs that will be required to be posted all over the place. However, I don't see it being approved in Utah anytime in the near future, but traffic stops between Wendover and SLC will be at an all-time high.

  • Rubydo Provo, UT
    July 15, 2017 10:43 a.m.

    Just admit it. Most people would want to try it at least once to treat pain or otherwise to see what all of the hupla is all about. Maybe if they did they would realize how counterproductive the fight against marijuana is.

  • CaliCougar American Fork, UT
    July 15, 2017 10:25 a.m.

    I see the usual pro-legalization comments around this issue already surfacing early here....Tax revenue benefits, other more harsh drugs are already legal (and abused), neighboring states have legalized medical marijuana use, etc.

    I don't deny that the use of medical marijuana has positive outcomes for some but I have also seen the negative effects of legalizing medical marijuana, and they are not pretty.

    No doubt emotions will run high over the coming months regarding this issue, particularly from those who are in favor of legalization in Utah. Utah, however, would be wise to thoroughly and honestly examine the results in states that have gone down this path before making the decision itself. Any and all ramifications should be reviewed and considered.

  • Fitness Freak Salt Lake City, UT
    July 15, 2017 9:42 a.m.

    Now - if you really want to see how hypocritical our legislators can be, watch how they ALL line up in favor of medical marijuana.

    As far as I'm concerned - Utah CANNOT stop marijuana use (legal or otherwise),since NV has legalized it. So any noise about Utah legalizing it or not are strictly a waste of time.

  • TeachyMcTeacherPants Sandy, UT
    July 15, 2017 8:53 a.m.

    The fact that we allow opiates but not Marijuana for pain relief is stupid. Opiates are far more dangerous. In my own social circle I know several people who have died in the last decade - active members of the church who you would never think to have such a problem.

    The stigma against marijuana has to end. It's old fashioned thinking and superstitious.

  • SAS Sandy, UT
    July 15, 2017 8:08 a.m.

    Dear Mr. Huntsman:

    Getting access to medical marijuana--or even recreational--is as simple as a plane ticket to Denver. They've got active LDS congregations, too.

    Why bother trying to influence the Utah legislature? Just ask the Outdoor Retailers how that went!

  • Jbejarano Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 15, 2017 7:36 a.m.

    Leave Utah law alone. Enough children are suffering from the loss of brain cells by experimenting with this already widely available drug. You want to raise my car insurance rates $350 dollars per year like Colorado did after making cannibis widely available. It can't be denied that people will drive when they are not supposed to, cause wrecks and jack up rates because it already is a problem in UT. Can't Huntsman hop in his private jet to Colorado and buy some weed already and leave us alone?

  • Steve C. Warren WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    July 15, 2017 7:14 a.m.

    Vote yes on the medical marijuana initiative because, as Brother Huntsman says, "the side effects of medical marijuana are considerably less than virtually all opioids and therefore less destructive to the body."

    How interesting it is that those who say study, study, study before making medical marijuana available to suffering people seem perfectly content to allow those same people to use expensive, addictive opioids that will kill or seriously harm them.

    Three cheers for Jon Huntsman.

  • dski HERRIMAN, UT
    July 15, 2017 7:06 a.m.

    If I am a patient with pain of that nature, I definitely will use it. I have had multiple surgeries related to my years of military services. Those surgeries comes with opioids to relieve the pain associated with them. I'm always scared of getting addicted to them so I use them only when pain is unbearable. I consider myself a strong and active member of the LDS faith. However, sometimes instead of taking my painkillers, I take a shot or two of whiskey. In my own mind, addiction to alcohol is easier to be treated than opioids. That is between me and God. Dealing with my pain and health is my own. If medical marijuana helps, why not! In the old days there was a song about Mary Jane making me feel alright. Until you have the pain, you won't think about Mary Jane.

  • bshelt SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    July 15, 2017 6:57 a.m.

    You lack understanding of the MMJ market. You think it's a sham for people who seek an alternative to opiates? Educate yourself please.

  • scrappy do DRAPER, UT
    July 15, 2017 6:44 a.m.

    I know some people who know a guy who knows another guy that can get you plenty of medical grade MJ

    The states that do not legalize pot are the real losers.... See Nevada (winner!)

    Utah ... Loser in terms of lost tax revenue

  • unrepentant progressive Bozeman, MT
    July 15, 2017 6:14 a.m.

    Mr Huntsman

    Why not just move to Montana or any other of the 29 states with legalized medical marijuana?

    If the good people of Utah don't see fit to (at least) legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes, then why would you want to reside in a state that denies you the possibility to alleviate chronic pain?

    And chances are, you would be using marijuana formulated in such a way that does not alter your consciousness. The big lie anti-medical marijuana crowds tell is that it is a gateway drug, even when it doesn't get a person high.

  • Rocket Science Brigham City, UT
    July 15, 2017 5:25 a.m.

    Mr. Huntsman, you have long bragged about your political connections and your money and have even used them to even get Jr. elected Gov. Now, why don't you use your powers to lobby congress to take "From national research and understanding"?

    Go through the legal process on a national level where it should be and change the laws and make it legally possible to bring the research and understanding together by medical research experts, finish whatever additional testing and trials are necessary to make medically available the legal use of certain compounds and derivatives for specific treatments of specific diseases. Let it be medically determined the dosages, and compounds that should be used, prescribed by a Dr., dispensed by a pharmacist and used responsibly for medical purposes.

    We want NO wink and nod medical M like California had. The purpose of that was to lead to complete and unrestricted use for recreational use.

  • So. Cal Reader San Diego, CA
    July 15, 2017 12:18 a.m.

    Good for him! He's the type of leader who can perhaps debunk the negative light of medicinal marijuana. Having a child with Crohn's Disease in a state that not allows medicinal use, my son has chosen not to use it .... yet. Without a doubt, as Huntsman does-- I believe medical marijuana has it's advantages to numerous lifelone illnesses and diseases. I also have a very close relative inflicted with polymyalgia rheumatica. Anyone associated with that illness knows how physically diabilitating it is. I hope Huntsman finds the relief he's seeking!

  • CaliCougar American Fork, UT
    July 15, 2017 12:15 a.m.

    This issue of legalizing the use of medical marijuana in Utah, or anywhere else for that matter, has many moving parts. While some want to make it seem so clear cut and simple to decide, it is not. The term "medical marijuana" itself consists of many different ways to consume cannabis.

    Utah would be wise to thoroughly and honestly examine the results in states that have gone down this path before making the decision itself. Any and all ramifications should be reviewed and considered. This information is readily available. Utah would also be wise to look at the results from the states that have taken the next step after legalizing medical marijuana to legalizing its recreational use. My guess is that it wouldn't be long before some in Utah would be pushing for this type of legalization also.

  • poyman Lincoln City, OR
    July 14, 2017 11:42 p.m.

    Of course he is... Maybe a pot night with the kids and grandkids for refreshment after Family Home Evening... Or maybe instead of stopping for pie and ice cream after a ward temple night he could have everyone over at the house for a quiet pot party.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    July 14, 2017 11:11 p.m.

    I really don't understand how many can be so off the cuff opposed to seeing if this could help when other far more dangerous and addicting pain medications are legal, and abused.

    I am by no means a pro-pot advocate.... but if opioids can be prescribed, and we know the dangers of them, then why not medical grade marijuana? We're not discussing the illegal use... that will persist no matter what.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 14, 2017 10:41 p.m.

    Hmmm. Interesting.

    I have opposed "medical marijuana" as a flimsy pretext to start down the slippery slope to unrestricted recreational pot, and still believe that is the goal of many of its advocates.

    However, I would be open to very tightly controlled experiments to evaluate certain forms for actual medical use to treat real conditions which do not respond to other treatments. Mr. Huntsman is an excellent example of where it may be a worthwhile option.

    However, for every person with legitimate needs like Mr. Huntsman, I fear there are hundreds of others whose underlying problem is the desire to get high, and that there are way too many "pharmacists and dispensaries" which would eagerly be supplying that market. I am adamantly opposed to such twisted interpretations of the possibly good intent of a medical marijuana law.

    Let's see a carefully written, fully debated bill make its way through the Legislature, allowing medical trials before any legalization. But, vote "NO" on the sham medical pot ballot initiative!

    God bless Mr. Huntsman for his good works, and I hope his pain can be treated effectively as soon as possible.

  • bshelt SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    July 14, 2017 8:45 p.m.

    Mr. Huntsman I think you would be doing a lot of sick people some good if you threw you and your cancer centers influence behind passing MMJ law here in Utah. Your a common sense man.
    Thank you