Pubdate: Thu, 13 Jan 2000
Date: 01/13/2000
Source: Capital Times, The  (WI)
Author: Gary Storck

Rob Zaleski hit the nail on the head with his column, ``Politicos
should take dose of reality'' (Jan. 3), in which he suggests
politicians take a walk in the shoes of the 40 million Americans who
lack health insurance coverage.

Let's extend this walk in another's shoes one step further. What if
the reality was a serious illness and marijuana was the best medicine
to ease the suffering or even save a life. Wouldn't they want all
options available? Doesn't it seem logical that the people who elected
these reality-challenged politicos deserve legal access?

Visualize having advanced multiple sclerosis, wracked with spasticity,
and not being able to even scratch your nose. How about having to
undergo chemotherapy with its attendant nausea and loss of appetite?
What if you had glaucoma, and conventional treatments could not stem
your vision loss?

Illness can strike anyone at any time. Those content with a status quo
which criminalizes sick people must keep in mind the good fortune of
enjoying good health could end at any moment.

The reality is if our elected representatives would only take a few
minutes to consider what their inaction means to those who struggle
each day with serious illness, they would act quickly to end this
cruel impasse.

Gary Storck,