An Update from Michele Kubby

I spoke Michael Badnarik and Aaron Russo in Phoenix last night. Like everyone else, they are both real concerned about the plight of Steve Kubby. As we provided in the last Kubby update, Steve is able to take Marinol (not that it will solve all his problems, but it might keep him alive for a while) right now. My wife is a doctor, and has software on her PalmPilot which tells her the average national cost of most medications. She looked up Marinol, and the cost for thirty 10mg tablets is around $550. We have no idea what Kubby’s dosage is, but if he takes one 10mg twice a day (typical dosage), that’s $1100 per month. The Kubbys could use your help.

Michele sent me an e-mail and said she will call me today, so I’ll be able to relay to her how supportive all of you have been, and perhaps get a bit more of an update on Steve’s status. In the meantime, here is the e-mail she sent out to friends and supporters:

I just spoke with Steve for the first time this evening since 4 pm on Thursday, while he waited for his flight.

He got booked into the Placer jail late this afternoon. He is currently being housed in the infirmary. Through the good graces of Dr. Tod Mikuriya, financial help from gracious funders and dedicated locals in Auburn, I was able to procure Marinol for Steve.

When Steve first entered the jail, his blood pressure had risen to 170/120. The jail medical staff were concerned and administered the Marinol. Steve says he feels his blood pressure lowering, but he can tell that Marinol is not going to be effective in the long run. Dr. Connors, Steve’s BC Cancer Agency doctor, spoke with the LA Times and told them that Marinol will not be effective if he needs to take it for awhile because he needs the cannabinoids. Dr. Connors also cautioned that Steve could be in severe danger in a short amount of time if he is not protected from the chemicals flowing through his body.

Steve sounds strong, now. This arrest was different from the previous two because he was prepared. Bill McPike got him ready to be arrested upon his arrival so, being prepared, the stress was less.

You see, what is so challenging about his disease is that when he has a flight or fright stress response, the adrenal chemicals that have gotten stored in his nervous system are released. It is this sudden release of these deadly chemicals during a stressful situation that cause the life threatening situations.

It is difficult to get law enforcement to understand medical marijuana and the needs of med pot patients. I can understand why there is a lack of understanding, law enforcement are not trained in the medical profession.

In prison, law enforcement has had different reactions to Steve. Some are sympathetic, others go out of their way to remind him that he no longer has any rights and is a prisoner. Some completely ignore that Steve has a medical problem and needs special care. One female officer would not let Steve cover himself with blanket while she interrogated him, even though he teeth were chattering and the blanket was sitting right next to him. When Steve gets chills, he is inclined to get pneumonia.

Mostly though, it is the ignorance of a medical marijuana patient’s needs that is the biggest hurdle to overcome. It is as if we live in parallel universes and we don’t want to cross the line to understand each other. This misunderstanding is what is causing so much pain and suffering.

I can only hope that our particular situation can shed light on the darkness surrounding this issue. Steve is willing to put his life on the line so that others will not have too.

We are truly blessed that we have such wonderful supporters and friends. So many others have suffered far worse abuse than Steve and I have – in silence. I just hope that, through shedding light on our suffering, others will be able to be spared what we are going through. I have given up wondering why there is such a violent reaction to someone peacefully puffing on a cannabis cigarette, if I didn’t, I think I would go insane with the absurdity of it all.

Steve only gets one free phone call, I’m not sure when I will hear from him again.

Currently, he is scheduled to have an arraignment hearing in Placer at 1 pm on Tuesday, January 31st.

This hearing is going to be an arraignment hearing on his misdemeanor violation of probation. Bill McPike, Steve’s attorney, has indicated that Cattran, the prosecutor, will probably ask for more time.

I will not be able to attend. I have many duties trying to pack up our old life and wait around to find out what our new life will be like. In the end, it is the family on the outside who suffers the most. Our house seems empty and chill. As soon as I saw Steve’s clothes scattered about like he is apt to do, I burst into tears. I don’t know how this will end, but I believe that it will be alright.

I am going to be offline after Monday, I’m not sure when I’ll be up again. I can be reached all weekend via e-mail.

I couldn’t do this without all of your good wishes and support. Thank you for being there.

-Michele

posted by Stephen Gordon
  • Pat Cotter

    What else is there to say? This story is disgusting. I’ll burn one tonight for Steve at 12:00 midnight, listening to Zappa, and try to gain insight from the “night gods”. Stories like this should really piss people off, not just the stoners.
    Sadly, we all have felt a little like Steve (sick or not),treated like criminals for trying to aquire cannibis for whatever reason, meanwhile my mother lay in a 50 year stupor from alcohol abuse that has torn apart this family.
    Marinol?

  • http://www.mapinc.org/ Allan Erickson

    Again, Stephen, thanks for keeping this on the front burner. Much appreciated.

  • http://kafene.org/ Matt

    Marinol is just synthetic THC, right? How could it be helping him at all without cannabinoids? Or does he rely on both?

  • http://www.mapinc.org/ Allan Erickson

    Matt, see:

    http://www.pdxnorml.org/HT_Marinol_0794.html

    -snip-

    The story begins in 1985, when Unimed, now located in Buffalo, IL, bought the patent for Marinol from the National Cancer Institute. In order to produce the artificial cannabinoid THC, Unimed purchases a raw material known as termpene olivitol from Hoffmann-LaRoche, and sends it to a laboratory in Southern California. There, the crude oil is treated by a process known as liquid chromatography. If you push enough termpene olivitol through a silica gel column, you get 99 percent THC.

    Another lab takes that THC and mixes it with sesame oil, then seals it in gel caps, in doses of 2.5, 5 and 10 milligrams. These caps are shipped to Roxane Laboratories in Columbus, Ohio, where they are packaged and distributed to your local drug store. A month’s prescription costs between $150 and $180. -snip-

  • http://makemarijuanalegal.com Cris Ericson

    “to remind him he no longer has any rights and is a prisoner” WRONG! PRISONERS HAVE RIGHTS! IT IS FRAUD FOR A JAIL OR PRISON GUARD TO LIE TO A PRISONER AND TELL HIM HE HAS NO RIGHTS! OF COURSE HE HAS RIGHTS! INCLUDING THE RIGHT TO MEDICAL TREATMENT!
    “would not let Steve cover himself with a blanket while she interrogated him” THIS IS ABUSE, IT IS ILLEGAL TO PUT A PRISONER IN A POSITION THAT COULD CAUSE THEM PNEUMONIA.
    REMEMBER, MANY PRISON GUARDS ARE WEEKEND SOLDIERS FOR THE U.S. ARMY NATIONAL GUARD, AND THEY GO OVERSEAS AND ABUSE PRISONERS THERE. DO NOT SHRUG OFF ABUSE!
    PRISON AND JAIL GUARDS HAVE NO RIGHT TO DO ANYTHING THAT ENDANGERS THE HEALTH OF PRISONERS. PRISONERS DO HAVE RIGHTS!
    http://makemarijuanalegal.com
    MAKE MARIJUANA LEGAL

  • Stephen VanDyke

    Woah, chill out with the caps lock, hombre.

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  • Josh

    Chris is absolutely right, and the caps help show his emotion so what’s with this “chill out” sh*t. What’s wrong with showing a little emotion? The media attacked Howard Dean because he showed some emotion even though he was the best Democratic candidate and supported medical marijuana.

    Too many Americans think that our rights come from the government. Too many people who smoke pot in this country say that someone who breaks the law deserves to be arrested. That’s contradictory but so are the minds of most poeple.

    We can blame the evil people in power all we want, but the truth is, the American people care more about what’s on TV than about freedom, and people consistently vote for their own oppression.

    I plan to get out of this fascist country as soon as I am able to. I think Steve Kubby is a hero and a great human, but I still think he should have flew to another country, like the Netherlands, instead of coming back to Amerikkka.

  • One who was there

    Why do people worship any fool with a joint in his mouth?

    Steve’s troubles are of his own making….and all the lies coming out of the Kubby camp! Spin, Spin

    Selling lies to the sheep.

    Is anyone this stupid to buy this charade?

    No one should go to jail over pot….but this case is about other drugs! Psycodellic Mushrooms..NOT MEDICAL MARIJUANA!

    That is the real truth.

  • http://www.mapinc.org/ Allan Erickson

    About other drugs my butt. 1 peyote button and 1 mushroom stem? Gimme a break.

    And I’ve seen nothing about WORSHIPPING anybody. He is a man, with a family. None of us want to see another Peter McWilliams scenario.

    I wonder more about a fool who posts and runs, anonymously.

  • StrangerInParadise

    For more background information and useful links see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Kubby.

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  • http://www.mapinc.org/ Allan Erickson

    Latest email from Michele-

    “A contact in Placer has just called to give me an update on Steve. I’m so glad someone heard from him.

    His main concern at this point is that Placer is not documenting the effects of his disease on his body or taking his illness seriously. His blood pressure is at 166/108. Placer is not testing for blood in his urine, either. Placer has also turned down Steve’s request for Tylenol pain killer.

    Steve wanted to express his gratitude for the calls. They are making a difference. One Sergeant, named Sanders has made sure that Steve is warm and has a blanket and pillow now, because of your concern.

    One thing my friend did say, Steve sounds amped and angry. This is to be expected because of the adrenaline in his body.

    I hope this is resolved on Tuesday. Thanks for being there.

    -Michele”

  • jeffrey smith

    Kubby’s martyrdom is essentially self-inflicted, going by what I can find out about his form of cancer.

    http://www.endocrineweb.com/pheo.html
    (most-in-plain-English explanation I could find)

    Unless there were reasons that made surgery impossible, the marijuana is not medically “necessary”.

  • Michelle Shinghal

    I am not a doctor, but I sleep with one almost every night of the month. (We are married, BTW, and my empty bed nights are his call nights.) You learn a lot being married to a good doc. My biggest lesson was the “suck it up” lesson. Surgery is the LAST option- unless your doc is a surgeon. Sometimes the best cure is fluids and rest. (Maybe it is pot.) My husband is an internist practicing as a hospitalist-or a doc dealing with acute problems requiring hospitalization and not long term, daily care. And while I may be taking great liberty sharing a bit of pillow talk, the doc’s advice would be, “Do what works.”

  • http://none RJ Lewis

    What’s past is past, the thing is, Steve is in jail right now, suffering needlessly, because he can’t have his medicine in jail, plain and simple. That’s what this is all about, folks. It isn’t about whether or not he’s a martyr, or anything else. It’s about his health, period. Wake up and smell the coffee, folks. But for the grace of god (goddess), it could be any one of us in his shoes, right now. I think just as many posting here as in that jailhouse, aren’t getting the message at all.
    Michele, my heart goes out to you and your family. I hope Tuesday brings good news, and I wish you all the best. I hope your husband rejoins your family soon, and that something can be worked out so he can serve whatever sentence he has to serve, at home. God(Goddess) bless you and yours.

  • http://www.mapinc.org/ Allan Erickson

    Jeff Smith-

    He’s had 2 surgeries I believe. Ganja works. Have some respect mon…

  • Bill in Sarasota

    Jeffrey Smith’s comment that Kubby’s “martyrdom” is essentially self inflicted is validation of the old maxim “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.”

    The link Smith posted leads to a discussion of pheochromocytomas, which are only operable by the minimally invasive procedure described on that page if they are NOT cancerous, as the linked page on laparascopic adrenalectomy clearly shows. Dealing with adrenal cancer is obviously not as easy as Smith would have us believe.

    According to another poster, Steve Kubby has already had two surgeries, presumably the invasive kind required for cancerous pheochromocytomas. The issue now is surviving the rest of the treatment.

    Particularly when a man’s life and all Americans’ liberty hangs in the balance, we should be less quick to criticize before we know what the facts are. We need to understand ALL of the pertinent facts, not just stop with the ones that seem to support our position.

  • http://www.mapinc.org/ Allan Erickson

    Thanks Bill. I’m only a first-aid type and leave the “discussion of pheochromocytomas” to the docs and folks like you who speak latin. (kidding… I think I understand what an adrenolectomy would be)

    Anyway… not to be caught misspeaking I went and checked the MAP ( http://www.mapinc.org/ ) archives. Didn’t find exactly what I was looking for but this one will do (from Wayne Wilson in the Sacramento Bee, Jan 2000):

    US CA: Medical Pot Defendant Asks Lockyer To Step In
    http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v00/n015/a05.html?281256

    -snip-
    Steve Kubby: “I never chose to be a medical marijuana patient, but I’ve exhausted every other therapy, including radiation, surgery, chemotherapy and exotic drugs,” Kubby wrote. “Only medical marijuana worked for me.”
    -snip-

  • http://www.mapinc.org/ Allan Erickson

    (Should have bracketed [Steve Kubby] above, as only his quote was snipped)

    Anyway… for those who doubt that their is an epidemic of ignorance and/or misunderstanding about the medical value of cannabis for many patients by the LEO community should check this out (Missoula Independent, Jan 2006):

    US MT: Testing Medical Marijuana
    http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v06/n118/a02.html?281259

    -snip-
    Ravalli officers arrested Bob Meharg at his home near Florence Jan. 11 and confiscated nine marijuana plants and about 2 ounces of marijuana, along with paraphernalia including a pipe and gardening gear. Agents also seized Meharg’s car, saying it was used to aid illegal actions, and charged him with three felonies carrying a potential total of 25 years in prison.

    Meharg, 52, has suffered from diabetes and associated amputations and nerve damage for more than 30 years, as well as degenerative bone disease.
    -snip-
    ——–

    …sigh…

  • http://www.mapinc.org/ Allan Erickson

    Stephen, hope you don’t mind my additions here…

    Thought this highly pertinent to the discussion (thanks to DdC!):

    A CIVIL RIGHTS COMPLAINT to the

    ORANGE COUNTY
    GRAND JURY
    ( http://www.kubby.com/ComplaintGrandJury.OC.html )

    [please see:]

    ATTACHMENT -5- CANNABINOID INHIBITION OF NORADRENALINE

    [and]

    ATTACHMENT -6- CANNABINOIDS FOUND TO SUPPRESS PHEOS

    -snip-

    he DeQuattro Study includes a University of Toronto study which shows cannabinoids suppress pheochromocytoma cells:

    Cell Bio Int 1996 Feb:20(2):147-57 Study Cannabinoid enantiomer action on the cytoarchitecture. Wilson RG Jr, Tahir SK, Mechoulam R, Zimmerman S, Zimmerman AM, Department of Zoology, University of Toronto, Canada, “…in general, cell viability and cell proliferation were suppressed to a much greater extent with HU-210 on…PC-12 cells.”

    [HU-210 is a synthetic cannabinoid and PC-12 are actual pheochrochytoma cells, just like those in Steve Kubby.]
    -snip-