Pubdate: Fri, 1 May 2009
Source: Chicago Sun-Times (IL)
Copyright: 2009 The Sun-Times Co.
Author: Lisa Lange


The Illinois Senate is expected to vote on the medical cannabis bill
-- SB 1381 -- next week. As a medical cannabis patient suffering from
osteoarthritis and Dercum's disease, I don't just support this bill; I
need it to become law.

I've advocated in support of this legislation for a couple of years
now, and it saddens me when I hear an elected official say that he or
she supports me in spirit, but can't vote for a bill that would
protect me from arrest because of re-election concerns.

First, shame on you.

Second, and contrary to what some of our more timorous legislators
contend, voting in favor of medical cannabis has never been the cause
of a politician being ousted from office -- I'm still waiting for
someone to cite an example.

The fact is, allowing the use of medical cannabis consistently polls
at 60 percent to 85 percent percent in this country. In Illinois, a
2008 Mason Dixon poll shows that 68 percent of Illinois voters support
such a law. To suggest that you could be voted out of office for
supporting an issue that your constituency overwhelmingly supports is
groundless at best and self-inflicted ignorance at worst.

Lisa Lange

Van Camp