Jacob JonesPublished:October 15, 2012 6:52PM
The states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, New Jersey, Oregon, Vermont, Rhode Island, and Washington, as well as the District of Columbia, have removed state-level criminal penalties from the medical use and cultivation of marijuana. Kentucky joins in this effort for the health and welfare of its citizens.
The above text is from the first section of the Gatewood Galbraith Medical Marijuana Memorial Act, this bills fate will be determined during our 2013 General Assembly. Also within the first section of the Act is the text below:
Marijuana’s recorded use as a medicine goes back nearly five thousand (5,000) years. Modern medical research has confirmed the beneficial uses for marijuana in treating or alleviating the pain, nausea, and other symptoms associated with a variety of debilitating medical conditions, including cancer, multiple sclerosis, and HIV/AIDS, as found by the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine in March 1999;
Studies published since the 1999 Institute of Medicine report have continued to show the therapeutic value of marijuana in treating a wide array of debilitating medical conditions. These include relief of the neuropathic pain caused by multiple sclerosis, HIV/AIDS, other illnesses and injuries that often fail to respond to conventional treatments, and relief of nausea, vomiting, and other side effects of drugs used to treat HIV/AIDS and hepatitis C, increasing the chances of patients continuing on life-saving treatment regimens.
Marijuana has many currently accepted medical uses in the United States, having been recommended by thousands of licensed physicians to more than five hundred thousand (500,000) patients in states with medical marijuana laws. Marijuana’s medical utility has been recognized by a wide range of medical and public health organizations, including the American Academy of HIV Medicine, the American College of Physicians, the American Nurses Association, the American Public Health Association, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and many others.
Data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Uniform Crime Reports and the Compendium of Federal Justice Statistics show that approximately ninety-nine (99) out of every one hundred (100) marijuana arrests in the United States are made under state law, rather than under federal law. Consequently, changing state law will have the practical effect of protecting from arrest the vast majority of seriously ill patients who have a medical need to use marijuana
States are not required to enforce federal law or prosecute people for engaging in activities prohibited by federal law. Therefore, compliance with Sections 1 to 24 of this Act does not put the state of Kentucky in violation of federal law; and
State law should make a distinction between the medical and nonmedical uses of marijuana. Therefore, the purpose of Sections 1 to 24 of the Gatewood Galbraith Medical Marijuana Memorial Act is to protect patients with debilitating medical conditions, as well as their practitioners and providers, from arrest and prosecution, criminal and other penalties, and property forfeiture, if such patients engage in the medical use of marijuana.
You’ve just read most of section 1 from the Gatewood Galbraith Medical Marijuana Memorial Act. Thank you. The next sections of this Act define this crucial medical program and are followed by needed protections along with guiding restrictions. The enacting of this bill benefits our loved ones and people we all know, who need medical marijuana to improve the quality of their lives.
The following are debilitating medical conditions which may qualify one to become a Kentucky medical marijuana patient:
Cancer, glaucoma, positive status for human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, hepatitis C, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, agitation of Alzheimer’s disease, post-traumatic stress disorder, or the treatment of these conditions;
A chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or its treatment that produces one (1) or more of the following: cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe, debilitating pain; severe nausea; seizures; or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including but not limited to those characteristic of multiple sclerosis.
Please inform your districts congressmen of your support for the Gatewood Galbraith Medical Marijuana Memorial Act and urge their co-sponsor for the 2013 General Assembly.
Official record of the bill can be found at http://www.lrc.ky.gov/record/13rs/SB11.htm