I wish to respond to L.K.'s statements in the letter "Too Buzzed" (April 26). The author states, with seeming authority, that marijuana use is not suitable because of its "strong effects on the liver." Having been a liver patient at UCSF for nearly 27 years (because of a now cured hepatitis C infection) and having discussed any potentially deleterious effects of cannabis, or more specifically, THC, on the liver with my doctor, I feel compelled to offer information that is current and accurate.
While some research has found no negative effects on the liver from THC, my doctor's research has shown that in the absence of other health conditions, marijuana can be used safely by someone like me (I have mild cirrhosis and advanced fibrosis due to prolonged inflammation from the HCV virus), as long as it isn't used every day. It can be used safely two or three times per week. To state with such certainty that even healthy individuals should not use marijuana because of its effects on the liver is doing the public a disservice, especially since research is demonstrating that marijuana can offer positive health benefits.
I believe it is time to retire the Independent Office of Law Enforcement Review and Outreach (IOLERO) or, at least, remove its executive director. The executive director has been unable to work well with other interested parties and provide transparency in the audit of the sheriff's office. Despite a determined effort to provide a public accounting of Sonoma County Sheriff's Office audits, the IOLERO's executive director appears to be on a power grab. The recent dismissal of Alicia Roman appears to overstep the mandate of this office, diminishes the office specifically and undermines confidence in the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office, as well as that of the governing body that created the IOLERO.
Respect the Homeless
To the business establishments of Guerneville, let me say one thing: homeless people are a problem, but they do not need to be chased up and down the street with buckets of cold, dirty water. That is not OK, especially when some of those individuals have diminished capacity. Now the police have to keep the homeless people on the move, disperse the congregations up and keep them moving. The homeless people I know in Guerneville are in extremely bad shape to be constantly asked to move. Hiding the homeless in parks or out of site for the tourist season is not the answer either. These people do not need to be sleeping on the streets or in parks. Falling asleep on wet lawns at night is not the solution either. People in general, regardless of race or class or status, need to be treated with respect.
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