Why does the Washington State Legislature (WSL) want to undermine medical cannabis? Alison Holcomb and Peter Holmes with Initiative 502 clearly stated that if passed, it would have no effect on medical cannabis laws. Reassuring voters that “I-502 won't harm patients”.
Senate Bill SB 5052 is an effort by the WSL that could doom our medical cannabis patient rights. This bill could bring harm and even death to many medical cannabis patients. Why would the WSL do this? Immediately, three reasons grab my attention: knowledge deficit, power, and greed. Let’s examine this.
Knowledge deficit: The WSL is way behind the leading edge of medical cannabis study. Amazing anecdotal stories of healing are coming to the public's attention daily. Legislative bills presented in this session don’t recognize the unique organism of each individual human nor our specific medical condition. New and promising cannabis plant varieties and delivery systems are being developed as we speak. They would limit the number of plants a patient could grow to less than half the current amount-severely limiting the patient’s right and ability to find out if a high CBD plant serves them better than a THC plant, not to mention CBG, CBN or a variety of terpines.
Greed: I- 502 created a huge lobby of 502 growers, processors and retail store owners in Olympia. Many members know nothing about the exciting miracle of medical cannabis. They want to sell recreational pot. SB 5052 would force patients to purchase their medicine from recreational stores under the guidance of the Washington State Liquor Control Board (WSLCB). Growers following the guidelines of the WSLCB can produce cannabis heavily laden with non-organic chemicals (248 pesticides are approved for use). Medical patients lose again, by being forced to smoke, ingest or topically use medicine grown with chemicals known to exacerbate their conditions. The WSLCB have held secret meetings to end medical cannabis.1
Power: Campaign contributions put and keep our Legislators in office. Public records show that the prime sponsor of SB 5052, Senator Ann Rivers-(R) 18th District, has received substantial contributions from large pharmaceutical corporations. Pfizer, Abbott and Eli Lilly have all contributed heavily to her last campaign. Big Pharma has always been opposed to medical cannabis because this natural remedy will cut deeply into their billion $ profits.
It is up to the public to hold the WSL accountable. SB 5052 has not passed the House. Please call your representative today and tell them SB 5052 is not acceptable. The legislature needs to work with cannabis patients groups to work out an acceptable way to provide safe access to quality medicine.
If these efforts fail to convince the WSL that we need medical cannabis, the public must once again take the initiative.
Citizens Initiative-1372 will strengthen and protect medical use of cannabis. You can find petitions at: www.cppwa.org. Please download a copy, sign it, get your friends to sign it and send it to the address on the petitions by June 27, 2015. This may be the only way to bring common sense regarding medical cannabis to the WSL. I-1372 creates a board made up of the state and the community to govern over all aspects of the medical cannabis market with a separate revenue to remain revenue neutral. This is something that the WSL will not do.