Pubdate: Sun, 12 Feb 2012 Source: Topeka Capital-Journal (KS) Copyright: 2012 The Topeka Capital-Journal Contact: http://cjonline.com/ Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/455 Author: Cheryl Riley PLEA FOR CANNABIS Much has been made of Gov. Sam Brownback's Christianity, and Kansas is widely recognized as a conservative state with a foundation grounded on Christian principles. This ideology plays a vital role in making our beautiful state what it is. Kansans are recognized for our strong moral ethics and family values. The majority of us also consider ourselves to be Christians. One of the primary virtues of Christianity is compassion. We feel compassion for any of our fellow citizens who struggle and suffer for any reason, and try to help them in any way we can. Hundreds of Kansans struggle and suffer, day in and day out, with chronic, painful medical conditions that have proved to respond well to cannabis (marijuana) therapy. More than four decades of research in Israel, Brazil, Canada, Italy, Spain and other developed nations has demonstrated beyond doubt that cannabis therapy is extremely helpful for a long and growing list of medical conditions. We believe it is well beyond time to show actual compassion to seriously ill Kansas residents and allow them safe, legal access to a medicine that might dramatically improve the quality of their lives. Or shall we continue to allow them to suffer needlessly because man has forbidden us to make use of a remarkable gift from God? For many patients, cannabis has proven to provide their only reliable relief and this benign medicinal plant is virtually free from dangerous physiologic side effects. What other medicine can make that claim? We hope Gov. Sam Brownback will consider joining compassionate and courageous governors Christine Gregoire, of Washington, Lincoln Chafee, of Rhode Island, and Peter Shumlin, of Vermont, in calling for the federal rescheduling of cannabis so many more seriously ill Kansans might have a chance for a better quality of life. (Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has said Colorado will petition the federal government to reschedule cannabis.) The medical cannabis tide is rising. Chronically ill Kansans should not be left behind. Don't they, like the rest of us, deserve the best quality of life attainable? Kansas families are counting on the governor to help their loved ones who are in desperate need of safe, effective medicine. Cheryl Riley, Kansas Medical Cannabis Network, Potwin - --- MAP posted-by: Richard R Smith Jr.