The issue in Gonzales v. Raich, the Supreme Court’s medical marijuana case, was not whether people who need marijuana to treat otherwise untreatable medical problems should be allowed to use it (I’ve discussed this misconception here and here). It was the much more arcane question of whether the use of marijuana for medical purposes falls within Congress’s power to regulate "interstate commerce." And this article in today’s NY Times is pretty compelling evidence that the Court got it right. Medical marijuana is big business in California, and the article makes clear that some California communities were having trouble keeping the market from spinning out of control.
So the right answer is not to say that medical marijuana has no relationship to the illegal market for marijuana – it seems reasonably clear that, actually, it does. The right answer, rather, is for Congress to craft an intelligent, narrow exemption for medical marijuana so that, as with OxyContin, morphine, and the rest of them, sick people can get the medicine they need. Really, is that so hard?