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Veterans among supporters of bill that would legalize medical marijuana

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Hundreds of supporters of  medical marijuana gathered in the state capitol Monday morning for a rally. Many veterans were also there, including Joe Mirt. Mirt couldn’t afford college so he joined the military. A few years later he was deployed to Iraq. He said he did things he’d never do in peacetime. “Firing a machine gun at vehicles until they go off the side of the road. In my head I like to think that I never hit anybody” said Mirt.

He knows that may not be true and it haunts him. “I don’t let on a lot of times the issues that I’m having because as a soldier and as a man I’ve been brought up my whole life to take the pain. To deal with the pain” said Mirt. He said marijuana has been the only thing that’s put a stop to that pain and it’s why he supports State Senator Daylin Leach’s bill, which would legalize medical marijuana in Pennsylvania.

Leach said “the public supports it.” He was citing a recent poll conducted by Quinnipiac University. It said that roughly 80% of Pennsylvania voters support legalization. “You don’t get that kind of number for almost anything, but by that number people support medical marijuana” said Leach.

As for Mirt, he said it’s time lawmakers start listening to the voters. “Their time is our time. We pay for this building, we pay for their salaries, we pay for their breaks. They need to understand that their free rides are going to come to a close if they don’t start agreeing with the constituents” said Mirt.

Leach’s bill, known as Senate Bill 1182, could be voted on as soon as next week. He said it has enough support to pass in the Senate before going to the House. If it passes in the House then it would go to Governor Corbett’s desk for signature, however the Governor has said he would not sign it. Leach is hopeful that he will change his mind, especially in an election year. “He said he would veto any bill. I don’t think he will. At the end of the day does he really want to go into reelection saying I’m the person who wants to keep sick children from getting medicine that would save their lives. I don’t think that’s a politically sustainable position to take” said Leach.


  • Brian Kelly

    When a loved one is in pain, wasting away unable to eat, and needs this marvelous herb in order to increase their appetite, reduce the overwhelming pain, and live as as healthy and happily as they can with the time they have left, let's have the compassion to allow them to have it.

    Stop treating Medical Marijuana Patients like second rate citizens and common criminals by forcing them to the dangerous black market for their medicine.

    Risking incarceration to obtain the medicine you need is no way to be forced to live.

    Support Medical Marijuana Now!

    "[A] federal policy that prohibits physicians from alleviating suffering by prescribing marijuana for seriously ill patients is misguided, heavy-handed, and inhumane." — Dr. Jerome Kassirer, "Federal Foolishness and Marijuana," editorial, New England Journal of Medicine, January 30, 1997

    "[The AAFP accepts the use of medical marijuana] under medical supervision and control for specific medical indications." — American Academy of Family Physicians, 1989, reaffirmed in 2001

    "[We] recommend … allow[ing] [marijuana] prescription where medically appropriate." — National Association for Public Health Policy, November 15, 1998

    "Therefore be it resolved that the American Nurses Association will: — Support the right of patients to have safe access to therapeutic marijuana/cannabis under appropriate prescriber supervision." — American Nurses Association, resolution, 2003

    "The National Nurses Society on Addictions urges the federal government to remove marijuana from the Schedule I category immediately, and make it available for physicians to prescribe. NNSA urges the American Nurses' Association and other health care professional organizations to support patient access to this medicine." — National Nurses Society on Addictions, May 1, 1995

    "[M]arijuana has an extremely wide acute margin of safety for use under medical supervision and cannot cause lethal reactions … [G]reater harm is caused by the legal consequences of its prohibition than possible risks of medicinal use." — American Public Health Association, Resolution #9513, "Access to Therapeutic Marijuana/Cannabis," 1995

    "When appropriately prescribed and monitored, marijuana/cannabis can provide immeasurable benefits for the health and well-being of our patients … We support state and federal legislation not only to remove criminal penalties associated with medical marijuana, but further to exclude marijuana/cannabis from classification as a Schedule I drug." — American Academy of HIV Medicine, letter to New York Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, November 11, 2003

  • americanforchange

    Reblogged this on My Opinion My Vote and commented:
    For medical purposes is fine, but for recreation use so it can be abused and hazardous to the innocent should still be illegal. Marijuana can be just as harmful as other drugs, to others. As a smoker in high school it messed up my senses, reflexes and ability to concentrate and I could not drive while “high”. How is this not dangerous to others? I know everyone is different but one thing remains constant, Marijuana is a drug! How do these pro-marijuana Americans expect to pay for their drug when they cannot get a job becasue practically every employers out there requires a urine test for employment. And many more will not hire if you have to operate an type of machinery.
    Bottom line leave the pot where it is!

  • Brian Kelly


    Let's stay on the topic at hand which is Legalizing Safe Access To Medical Marijuana for Patients who need it. Recreational use is a completely different issue.

    Wouldn't want to confuse Voters right before they might get their say on Medical Marijuana now, would we?

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