Cannabis and nerve pain: Does it work?

Also, what’s up with law enforcement attacking grows in Mendocino?

Ngaio Bealum is a Sacramento comedian, activist and marijuana expert. Email him questions at

My primary doctor told me that marijuana would probably relieve my peripheral neuropathy pain. I looked at all the ads in the SN&R issue. Problem is that I can’t tell who is the most reputable doctor I should go to for an evaluation. Can you suggest someone who really looks at my medical information and steers me to the right dispensary. I am 88 years old and haven’t used since the old “love in” days. Today’s scene is a mystery to me, so please help this old man with your knowledge and sage advice.


Hello, Bob. Your doctor is right. There are plenty of studies that show cannabis to be very effective at treating nerve pain. Scientists aren’t really sure how it works—they think it’s because marijuana has an anti-inflammatory effect on nerves—but they aren’t really sure how aspirin works, either, and you can get aspirin over the counter.

Your primary-care physician could write you a letter of recommendation. Most of the cannabis-evaluation clinics in Sacramento are top notch. Americans for Safe Access has a sample letter on their website ( Print it out and see if you doctor will sign it. If you doctor is uncomfortable signing this letter, I have sent you an email containing the names of few places that I think will go above and beyond to make sure you get the help you need. Welcome back to the cannabis scene. I hope you feel better.

Why are unmarked helicopters and vigilantes uprooting peoples’ harvests in Mendocino County?

—Khan Speerasy

Yup. You heard right. In fact, there seem to be two different groups behind these raids. According to published reports, the LEAR Asset Management Corporation was hired by a Mendocino-area timber company to eradicate marijuana cultivation sites on its property. At the same time, some sort of joint task force between the California Department of Justice (Kamala Harris, I’m looking at you. Have you forgotten that you owe your job to the thousands of medical marijuana patients that voted for you instead of Steve Cooley? For shame) and the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office.

They claim they are only going after “trespass grows” (unauthorized grow sites on private or public property), but there are reports of completely legitimate medicinal farms being destroyed. Once again, we see the failure of not having comprehensive statewide regulations for growing marijuana. Listen: These raids aren’t really going to make a dent in the supply, but when legitimate growers trying their best to follow the rules and guidelines have their property destroyed, I get upset. And you should also be upset. Call Mendocino Sheriff Tom Allman and tell him how you feel. Give Kamala Harris a ring, as well. I’m sure she would be happy to hear from you.