Last month a Republican Assembly Speaker in Wisconsin declared that he was open to the idea of medical marijuana. Now the Democratic lawmakers in the state are hoping that he meant what he said as they proceed to introduce two different medical marijuana bills.
“People want medical marijuana legalized and we will not stop this fight until it is legal in the state of Wisconsin,” Rep. Chris Taylor said.
One would legalize medical marijuana for patients with a qualifying condition and a written recommendation from their physician; the other would put a nonbinding question on the state ballot to see what the voters think of the idea. The first bill would also create a licensing process for cultivation facilities and dispensaries and would give patients the right to grow up to 12 plants and have up to 3 ounces of leaves or flower at one time.
The reason for the second bill is that some lawmakers who are not prepared to support medical marijuana legislation upfront would perhaps at least be willing to see where the state’s residents are on the matter. After all, when a clear majority of people want to see a change, it becomes the responsibility of lawmakers to ensure that they take that into account.
“We’re not criminals. We no longer want to live in the shadows of society,” said Steve Acheson, a Gulf War veteran who uses marijuana to treat post-traumatic stress disorder and back pain.
As in many states, there are many patients who are hoping desperately to see this legislation go through so that they no longer have to fear arrest for using the only medicine that works for them. Steve Acheson is just one more example of someone who was prescribed a multitude of prescription medications – enough to fill two freezer bags with opiate pain killers, muscle relaxers, and sleeping pills, just to name a few.
“Slowly, I was able to replace every single medication I had been taking with one natural, safe, and most importantly, effective alternative to the plethora of pills,” Acheson said.
Through medical marijuana Acheson, and thousands more, have been able to find relief to chronic ailments that found little to no relief through traditional pharmaceutical drugs. If this bill were to pass in Wisconsin, it would give these people legal and safe access to the same medicine they currently run the risk of arrest for simply to have a better quality of life – so why not make it a legal option for them? Hopefully, for all those waiting for medical marijuana in Wisconsin, this is the line of thinking when these bills are reviewed.