Pubdate: Mon, 12 Jan 2009
Source: Daily News Tribune (Waltham, MA)
Copyright: 2009 GateHouse Media, Inc.
Author: James Mylett


Just a couple of months ago here in Massachusetts we voted
to decriminalize marijuana possession.

And in Michigan they voted to legalize medical marijuana, making them
the 13th state to allow medical use of marijuana. I think now is the
time Massachusetts considers legalizing medicinal use of marijuana as
well. It could be prescribed by a doctor if it has been decided there
is a legit medical condition in which a patient could benefit from the
medicinal use of marijuana.

Also, states that have medical marijuana laws on the books have a
state registry and issue state ID card to qualifying patients. Since
the new law went into effect on January 2, anyone caught using or
possessing one ounce of less, would be subject to a $100 civil fine
and confiscation of the drug, even if they're using it to ease their
symptoms of a debilitating medical condition, and if they possess more
than one ounce they risk arrest and a criminal charge.

With a state medical marijuana law, we can protect all medical
marijuana user from any type of civil or criminal penalties associated
with marijuana use and possession. The state could set limits on how
much marijuana they can possess, use or cultivate. State marijuana
laws also typically have a caregiver who is authorized to possess and
cultivate a given patient's medical cannabis. So with the regulation
of the state and establishing a state registry that will issue ID
cards to qualifying patients, law enforcement won't have any trouble
identifying medical marijuana users from recreational users.

During the past year I had found information online about bills being
filed before Congress that would protect medical marijuana from
federal prosecution in the case when they are using marijuana legally
in the state for their medical condition. And as well, I had heard
about President-Elect Barack Obama's campaign promise, that he would
stop DEA raids on state's medical marijuana patients and dispensaries.
I honestly could see the U.S. as whole becoming more accepting and
recognizing state medical marijuana laws under the incoming Obama

And the fact that Obama had stated he has supported states rights to
pass their own medical marijuana law, he would not use justice
department resources on raiding or in the prosecution of medical
marijuana cases anywhere in the U.S. I am also asking that everyone
please support medical marijuana, and urge our state Legislature to
enact medical marijuana laws to legalize medical use of the drug and
protect those who are using it for a legit medical purpose.

James Mylett, Lexington
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