Joseph Gamble, a father, former jet pilot, and veteran, was diagnosed with MS at the age of 31, and his life changed dramatically. Once a Commercial Pilot, Joe now has difficulty walking in his own home. Diagnosed with Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis, there is no hope of remission and very little hope for a cure. Joe’s symptoms include weakness, difficulty walking, neuropathy pain in his hands and back, headaches, and lesions on his brain, spine, and optic nerves.
Joe will not take the Valium and other medications doctors have prescribed because of their harmful side effects. Instead, he uses marijuana to alleviate his symptoms. According to Joe, “the therapeutic and healing effects from the cannabinoids in cannabis tones down my symptoms, my muscle spasms are not as intense, my neuropathy pain is manageable, and it ignites the urge to eat and drink.”
Joe has dedicated his life to educating himself and others about medical marijuana. “The endocannabinoid system with its abundant receptors in our body is a beautiful thing. Our bodies are wired for cannabis like a lock and key.”
Because New York does not currently permit the medicinal use of marijuana, Joe is forced to break the law in order to ease his suffering. “Sixteen states and the District of Columbia have laws to protect patients like me; the US government owns the patent on cannabinoids because it works. The US government grows marijuana at the University of Mississippi and dispenses it to patients through a federal program which is now closed to the public because it works; but what about me?