As the election nears, Utah’s “powers that be” appear to be freaking out. The people of Utah might actually bypass them and directly pass legislation making medical marijuana available to Utahns in need. Heaven forbid!
Of course, in spite of predictions of doom, this is not a revolutionary concept. It’s already legal right now in 30 states; that’s 60 percent of America. Each of those states made an informed choice. That choice was not made by some radical association of drug-addicted, pot-smoking liberals. It was made by ordinary everyday people of all backgrounds.
Why did they do it? Because, like us, they know and love family and friends suffering from cancer, epilepsy, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, wasting syndrome, PTSD and chronic pain. Their choice was a choice to help those people.
The sky didn’t fall in. Society didn’t crumble. People there still go to work, they still go to church and their kids still go to school.
What else happened? There is strong evidence that overdose deaths from narcotics drop significantly after passage. Lives have been saved and the lives of tens of thousands in need have been made better.
Now it’s our turn to care and to do something to help those same people in our state. There is no perfect answer, but this choice is worth making and it’s the right thing to do now.
Mark Petersen, Park City