Editorial: SB73 best hope for limited, humane medical marijuana law

When the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced its opposition to SB73, Sen. Mark Madsen’s bill legalizing medical marijuana, it cited concern about “unintended consequences.”

Madsen responded by amending the bill to eliminate whatever uncertainty it originally contained. He crafted a sharply defined law to end the chronic suffering of thousands of Utahns — without opioids.

  • RELATED: “Utah Senate debates medical pot; one bill advances, more discussion for another”

Voting against SB73 condemns those Utahns to a life of needless agony.

Madsen’s bill establishes a list of illnesses that qualify patients for medical cannabis prescriptions. It includes HIV, Alzheimer’s, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, cancer and post traumatic stress syndrome related to military service.

  • RELATED: “Show compassion and legalize medical marijuana”

It prohibits smoking marijuana as a cigarette, but allows patients to eat it or inhale it as a vapor.

It regulates who can prescribe medical marijuana, who can grow it, who can dispense it and how it’s dispensed.

It addresses how the law should treat drivers using doctor-prescribed cannabis.

It eliminates whole-plant access, and thus discourages recreational marijuana use.

The Senate approved a competing bill Friday — one that legalizes low-THC cannabidiol oil. But oil only helps some patients.

Utah support for medical marijuana continues to grow, especially among Mormons.If lawmakers fail to approve Madsen’s bill now, voters could petition to place a much broader initiative on the November ballot.

This is the state’s best chance at developing a limited, effective medical cannabis law.

To read more: http://www.standard.net/Our-View/2016/02/21/SB73-Utah-medicalmarijuana-MarkMadsen-LDSChurch-editorial.html

Comments are closed.