Cancer treatment is hell. Pure hell. Modern medical cancer protocols are now able to save or greatly extend life. However, the medications used, radiation and/or chemotherapy cocktails, wreak havoc on the body. While doctors do the best they can, there are still days when it takes all a cancer patient has to deal with the bombardment of toxins required to treat the disease. For some, marijuana can minimize the side effects, associated with this brutal regimen and in so doing, provide patients with a much needed dose of sanity during one of the worst times of their lives.
It is this group of people and others facing debilitating diseases that 2/3rds of the state’s voters wanted to help when saying “Yes” to medicinal marijuana. Yet, two and a half years later, patients are still unable to find a reliable and consistent way to gain access to the medication.
One of the reasons for this quagmire are ordinances such as the one enacted by Bloomfield Township which allows for residents to grow up to twelve plants for medicinal use provided they have proper documentation. While at first glance, this may seem like a common sense solution to community concerns, it fails to address those too sick to grow their own plants. Do they really think someone vomiting numerous times a day should have to learn the nuances of marijuana growing?
Now there is a provision in Michigan law to solve this dilemma. Patients can designate caregivers to grow up to twelve plants on their behalf. Bloomfield Township, however, has decided allowing caregivers into their community would bring in the “wrong elements.” Another solution, dispensaries, has also been nixed by the township claiming the law doesn’t provide for them. On a side note, the law doesn’t specifically authorize dispensaries but doesn’t forbid them either
Their reasoning: they want to avoid the violent crime experienced by other states, specifically California, that have marijuana distribution systems. They cite 4 murders and a small number of other violent crimes which have occurred around dispensaries.
Yes, we acknowledge there is some crime, but in a state with California’s large population, there is an equivalent amount of violent crime that occurs around the state’s Walmarts and the numbers are substantially lower than the crime in and around California’s liquor stores. The truth is medicinal marijuana has not ushered in a return to the Wild West. It has simply provided a civilized way for sick people to get medication.
One would think, with all the trouble Michigan is having, that the state was paving a new social frontier. The simple fact is its not. Twenty-Six states and Washington, D.C. have already come up with models to efficiently distribute medicinal marijuana and civilization as we know it has not come to an end. If Michigan is unable to find a path that is uniquely it’s own, then it should copy one of the others. Sick people are needlessly suffering due to bureaucratic inertia. This has got to change!!!!!