Starting back in March I began a labor of love. I began openly supporting SQ 788 (the legalization of medical marijuana). I believe and have always believed in the national de-scheduling and decriminalization of Cannabis in all its beautiful forms. Hell, it was legal even when alcohol was not through the prohibition years. It wasn't until alcohol prohibition ended that the federal government, led by companies like DuPont and the newly bored FBI (no more bootleggers to bust) began the push to criminalize and demonize cannabis.
Fast forward 70 to 80 years and legal cannabis is making a comeback. State by state, medical and recreational cannabis is being approved by voters at an ever increasing pace. The latest, and probably MOST surprising, right here in the buckle of the Bible belt, Oklahoma. Even former Republican Speaker of the House John Boener is getting in on the action, buying up shares of a large commercial marijuana grow operation.
When it became evident that Oklahoma's State Question 788 had overwhelming support across every age, gender, race, religious affiliation and political leaning (51% of 'church-going, conservative Christians ages 51 and OVER' voted for medical legalization of marijuana) I began getting hopeful that this wonderful state was joining the rest of the world in embracing this green, hugely diverse, SAFE, NON-ADDICTIVE, CAN'T OVERDOSE on it, medical miracle. Well, voters passed the state question and two weeks later a bunch uneducated (in medicinal marijuana), closed-minded APPOINTED, NOT ELECTED bureaucrats gutted the will of the people and created such ridiculous regulations that the cost of marijuana products in Oklahoma will be more than DOUBLE that of other states.
It's still early and I'm sure by the end of today there will be numerous lawsuits filed because Oklahoma Board of Health members like Dr. Terry R. Gerard II, DO do not care about the will of the people and the intent of the law. I pick on him specifically because he made one of the dumbest and most damning comments I've ever heard. I guess he forgot this meeting was being televised.
Dr. Gerard (emergency medicine doctor at Duncan Hospital) basically said he didn't care about the intent of the law and the will of the people when making changes to the "emergency rules" and smugly said he EXPECTED lawsuits because of them!!
This is an appointed bureaucrat (NOT AN ELECTED OFFICIAL) making, according to their own legal council, changes they WERE NOT ALLOWED TO MAKE!! This bonehead and the others who voted for the changes should be the ones to pay the MILLIONS of dollars it is going to cost the already cash-strapped state in litigation fees because of their lack of caring and in their KNOWING litigation would happen because they over-stepped their legal bounds.
Let's see.. Dr. Gerard and others on the board who voted 'yes' knew the changes made were unlawful for them to make because their own legal council told them so. He knew the changes would result in legal challenges (lawsuits) by his own statements and admissions. I assume he is somewhat intelligent (I mean, he IS a doctor) so following that train of thought, he MUST know that it costs money.. BIG money to go into litigation, especially involving cases where the will of the people is intentionally ignored. Is it me or are his and the majority of the boards' actions tantamount to government waste and abuse in a state department where they were just caught hiding money and asking for more appropriations? This is a knowing and intentional act which they KNOW will result in lawsuits costing the state millions of dollars. Can you say MORE and intentional misappropriated funds by the state health department's board? I say they pay the costs to litigate it. Perhaps, we the people, should consider individual lawsuits for violating our rights? I mean they did knowingly circumvent the will of the people in a legally passed state question.
Sorry that got a little repetitive but I CAN NOT believe the audacity of these "appointees".
All in all I'm thrilled the measure passed. Even though I currently take several medications to handle the myriad of problems and health issues I face because of the crash that ended my law enforcement career; and marijuana WILL easily replace them ALL, I am not sure that I will partake right away. I am just happy that the will of the people was heard, even if it is being ignored by a few power-happy non-believers. I just wish they would open their eyes and ears; see and hear the overwhelming proof that grows by the day that cannabis IS, in it's raw and processed form(s) a miracle substance CREATED BY GOD.