STATES HELP SICK WITH MARIJUANA

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The420Guy

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Pubdate: Fri, 07 Jul 2000
Source: Journal Gazette (IN)
Copyright: 2000 Journal Gazette
Contact: jgnews@jg.net
Address: 600 W. Main Street, Ft. Wayne, IN. 46802
Fax: (219) 461-8648

Author: R. Keith Stroup, Executive Director, NORML

STATES HELP SICK WITH MARIJUANA

Rep. Mark Souder continues to demonstrate his insensitivity to sick and dying patients for
whom marijuana provides relief from pain and suffering. Marijuana provides much needed
relief to many patients suffering from a range of illnesses, including cancer, AIDS, MS and
other diseases involving spasticity, and for whom traditional medications have been
ineffective.

Contrary to the overly simplistic analysis offered by the congressman, not all federal laws
overrule state law. In fact, only when Congress specifically declares its intention to usurp the
field does federal law trump state law, and no such declaration has been made regarding
marijuana policy. It would do enormous damage to our democratic principles were Congress
to overrule the valid state elections approving the medical use of marijuana in seven states.

While it is true that NORML supports decriminalizing the responsible recreational use of
marijuana, as well as the medical use by seriously ill patients, the two issues are separate and
each must be evaluated on its own merits. Rep. Souder seems unable to distinguish between
the two, and he is willing to deny an effective medication to seriously ill patients in order to
demonstrate his "tough on drugs" credentials. Shame on you, Rep. Souder.

R. KEITH STROUP
Executive Director, NORML
Washington, D.C.

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