WI: OPED: State Medical Marijuana Law Remains Elusive

—– Original Message —–
From: "Richard Lake" <rlake@mapinc.org>
To: <mmjlist@cannabismd.org>
Sent: Friday, January 11, 2008 8:38 PM
Subject: [mmjlist] US WI: OPED: State Medical Marijuana Law Remains Elusive

> Newshawk: Is My Medicine Legal YET? http://www.immly.org
> Pubdate: Fri, 11 Jan 2008
> Source: Green Bay Press-Gazette (WI)
> Webpage: http://drugsense.org/url/11sE0hOw
> Copyright: 2008 Green Bay Press-Gazette
> Contact:
> http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/contact/forms/editor_letter.shtml
> Website: http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/
> Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/879
> Author: Gary Storck
> Note: Gary Storck of Madison is a longtime medical marijuana patient and
> advocate. He serves as director of communications of Is My Medicine Legal
> YET? (www.immly.org) and co-founded the Madison and Wisconsin chapters of
> the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML).
> Bookmark: http://www.mapinc.org/mmj.htm (Marijuana – Medicinal)
>
> STATE MEDICAL MARIJUANA LAW REMAINS ELUSIVE
>
> I was sorry to read of the passing of former Wisconsin Gov. Lee Sherman
> Dreyfus. Gov. Dreyfus signed Wisconsin’s first medical marijuana bill into
> law April 19, 1982. As a glaucoma patient fighting each day to save my
> precious eyesight, I had already been using cannabis for 10 years at that
> time, and had lobbied for the bill.
>
> The Therapeutic Cannabis Research Act passed both houses easily, the
> Assembly 77-19 and the Senate 32-1. Similar legislation was passed in more
> than two-thirds of U.S. states. Unfortunately, these bills were written
> with the expectation that the federal government would supply the
> program’s medical marijuana. With federal authorities unwilling to supply
> marijuana to sick and dying U.S. citizens, the law became symbolic.
>
> While Dreyfus remained a supporter of medical marijuana in his later
> years, even writing about it, many of the Republican legislators who
> followed him in state government have failed to honor his compassionate
> vision by blocking medical marijuana legislation each time it is
> introduced. This session, the Jacki Rickert Medical Marijuana Act is
> awaiting action in the Assembly’s Health and Healthcare Reform committee.
> So far, committee Chairwoman Rep. Leah Vukmir, R-Wauwatosa, a nurse, has
> stated the bill will not receive a hearing. If the bill does not receive a
> hearing soon, it will die in committee like previous attempts dating more
> than a decade.
>
> Polling has established popular support for medical marijuana exceeds 80
> percent in Wisconsin. As an advocate for medical cannabis, I constantly
> receive calls from patients and family members who indicate there is a
> crisis in pain management in our state. I know the good folks who call me
> and tell me about their pain represent only the tip of the iceberg.
>
> Memo to the GOP leadership: The sick and dying are not your enemy. I get
> calls from Republicans, too. Serious illness knows no party affiliation.
>
> Let’s get this done, this session, in honor of the memory of a man ahead
> of his time, Gov. Lee Sherman Dreyfus, who did his best to try to help
> patients and families with nowhere to turn, as well as the thousands and
> thousands of Wisconsinites who died in pain and those still suffering and
> waiting for state lawmakers to finally do the right thing.
>
> Please make passage of AB 550, the Jacki Rickert Medical Marijuana Act, a
> true priority when the Legislature reconvenes Jan. 15.
>
>
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