The rally to support Senate Bill11, the Gatewood Galbraith Medical Marijuana Act, was held on Wednesday 6 Feb 2013 at the State Capitol Annex. It was reported on the 5 and 6pm newscasts on channel 27 WKYT. There were a lot of supporters there and in the 6pm story they interviewed a man paralyzed with a back broken in 4 places. He spoke of the positive effect medical marijuana has had on his condition in dealing with his chronic and intractable pain. His mother also spoke and she totally supports her son’s use of medical marijuana. She sighted the difference between using prescription pain killers and medical marijuana. She said that the depression, addiction and lethargy that comes with prescription pain killers was not present when her son uses medical marijuana. Her son was coherent, positive and tolerated his pain and condition much better. She also stated that his thoughts of suicide went away when using medical marijuana. (It is interesting to note that Veterans report having much success using medical marijuana to treat their Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. In addition, suicide rates are reported to be down in states that have medical marijuana laws.)
The State Police oppose the bill along with the anti drug group UNITE. They cited difficulty in distinguishing medical marijuana and illegal recreational marijuana. Actually that would be simple. A qualified medical marijuana patient will just show the officer who stopped him a State medical marijuana card. If the patient is in compliance then no problem. Case solved! On the Kentucky Tonight show on KET the Head of the State Police, in objecting to the Hemp Bill, sighted the gateway theory but that has been debunked many times.
SB11 is currently in the Judicial Committee where it died last year without a hearing. During that year 9090 of our fellow citizens were arrested for marijuana offenses and had their lives turned upside down. Illness and disability do not care whether the medicine is legal or not, only that it works, and some of our citizens have conditions that cannot wait another year till the time is somehow more ‘right’ than it is now, this year.
No one in the 4000 year history of man using marijuana has ever died from an overdose.
There have however been patients who have died because this medicine, which works very well for them, has been taken away. Several have died after being remanded to prison for simple possession related to their conditions.
Our legislators can prevent any more of this needless suffering by simply passing Senate Bill 11 and not making Kentucky’s sick and disabled risk life and freedom because they were forced to wait another year to use a medicine the citizens of 18 States and the District of Columbia are already legally using.