Yes on Prop 1: Allow Relief Marijuana May Offer

October 4, 2008

Michigan — If people who are seriously or chronically ill can convince their doctors that using marijuana will make them feel better, the State of Michigan should not stand in the way.

Proposal 1 on the statewide ballot Nov. 4 would allow Michigan residents to cultivate and possess small amounts of marijuana for medical reasons with a doctor’s approval. Voters should say yes to this proposal, which was placed on the ballot by a petition campaign that collected almost 378,000 signatures.

This is not about drug use. It’s about compassion. The initiative would amend Michigan law to allow seriously ill people to seek authorization from a doctor to grow up to a dozen marijuana plants and possess up to 2.5 ounces of the weed, strictly for personal use. The continuing, regulated sale of alcoholic beverages poses more of a problem for society than will passage of this law.Voters in five Michigan cities — Detroit, Ann Arbor, Flint, Ferndale and Traverse City — and a dozen other states have already approved similar statutes without the dire consequences forecast by federal drug-control authorities who fear the start of a slippery slope toward broad drug legalization.

While there are other prescription drugs available to control the pain or anxiety that afflicts the seriously or terminally ill, some such patients find more relief with less loss of control and fewer side effects from marijuana. These are not people who will start peddling the products of their little pot gardens to neighborhood kids. They won’t have that much and will need all of it for their own use. And such sales would still be illegal under the proposed law.

Last month, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a national survey showing Americans rank marijuana well behind other illicit drugs, prescription drugs and alcohol among substances that pose a threat to society.

The national Marijuana Policy Project, which provided nearly all of the $1.1 million spent to put this question on the Michigan ballot, acknowledges a larger goal of replacing “marijuana prohibition with a sensible system of regulation.” But that may be a long way off, if, indeed, it happens at all. Meantime, Proposal 1 is about helping sick people feel better.

Sidebar: Proposal 08-1

A legislative initiative to permit the use and cultivation of marijuana for specified medical conditions. The proposed law would:

• Permit physician approved use of marijuana by registered patients with debilitating medical conditions including cancer, glaucoma, HIV, AIDS, hepatitis C, MS and other conditions as may be approved by the Department of Community Health.

• Permit registered individuals to grow limited amounts of marijuana for qualifying patients in an enclosed, locked facility.

• Require Department of Community Health to establish an identification card system for patients qualified to use marijuana and individuals qualified to grow marijuana.

• Permit registered and unregistered patients and primary caregivers to assert medical reasons for using marijuana as a defense to any prosecution involving marijuana.

 

Source: Detroit Free Press 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: