The push for medical marijuana begins | Arkansas Blog

Friday, October 21, 2016

The push for medical marijuana begins

Posted By on Fri, Oct 21, 2016 at 8:23 AM


Advertising has begun for Issue 6, the constitutional amendment to allow sale of medically prescribed marijuana through for-profit dispensaries regulated by the state Alcoholic Beverage Control Division.

Issue 7, the initiated act to allow medical marijuana distributed through non-profit agencies regulated by the Health Department, also has an ad on the web. That group hasn't had the same degree of financial backing as the amendment. The link is to a video featuring a 16-year-old Crohn's patient who's had relief thanks to marijuana.

Issue 7 is still somewhat in limbo pending a state Supreme Court ruling on sufficiency of petition signatures. The failure of the court to rule on the case this week has some wondering whether that's an indication of a court divide on the subject. You'll remember just such a division prolonged — finally until it was moot — the completion of the marriage equality case.

Speaking of medical marijuana, my hero Dr. Jocelyn Elders, the former surgeon general, spoke in favor of medical marijuana yesterday. She said aspirin killed more people than marijuana and said she'd long advocated medical use of cannabis.

Also, this article notes big spending by alcohol industry against marijuana proposals in other states. Wonder why? This adds to pharmaceutical industry opposition.

PS: If you want to see some fanciful number crunching from the Hutchinson administration, take a gander at what his agencies have compiled to overestimate the cost of regulating medical marijuana. 20 new State cops and 20 new Ram pickups? For an agency that in theory already enforces marijuana law? Please.

Here's the dreamy estimate on the initiated act.

Here's the exaggerated figures on the amendment.

No mention given to elements of the proposals aimed at making them revenue neutral. No mention given to the dozens if not hundreds of other government endeavors that cost more than they produce in revenue. No mention of the incalculable value of medical marijuana to the otherwise criminal children and sick people who benefit from it.



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