Republican Jim Lucas has taken a firm and cohesive stance to pave the way for the legalization of medical marijuana in the state of Indiana. Lucas said he is still working out the details, but has “every intention of introducing a bill that legalizes medical marijuana in the state.” Now that’s stuff stoners like, eh?
It is still early in the game considering a bill cannot be introduced until the legislative session begins in January. But, Lucas’ common sense, practical approach is a solid move for those in need of their medicine. Lucas stated, “I can’t comprehend how we can deny people something that provides them with relief that’s not addictive and is not killing anyone when we know for a fact that prescription opioids are killing people.”
Lucas acknowledges legalizing in Indiana is a long shot and is quite aware of his fellow republican opposition: Senate President Pro Tempore David Long, R-Fort Wayne, and House Speaker Brian Bosma, R-Indianapolis, for example, have traditionally opposed any efforts to legalize marijuana, even for medical purposes.
Indiana’s Attorney General Curtis Hill, a Republican who took office in January, also has lambasted efforts to legalize marijuana, emphasizing its health and public safety risks. Curtis, stated recently in June, “Here in Indiana, money-hungry profiteers are lining up with dollar signs in their eyes contemplating prospects of a legal marijuana market. Let’s hope that day never comes.”
Lucas plans on attacking his fellow right wingers with factual information about the medicinal value of marijuana and debunking their tired arguments.”The gateway drug thing, we have to get past that,” Lucas said. “I would point out we have a gateway drug that is punching us in the face right now and it is prescription opioids.”
And, that it is, the opioid epidemic is continuing to punch Indiana hard in the face, harder than originally reported. A new study shows opioid-related mortality rates are vastly under reported nationwide and Indiana has one of the largest discrepancies. Researchers at University of Virginia found corrected opioid-related mortality rates are 24 percent higher than the reported rates across the nation in 2014.The actual opioid-related mortality rate was more than double compared to what was reported in 2014, according to the report.
In addition, Eskenazi Emergency Room Doctor Dan O’Donnell said, “2017 will be a record number of naloxone administrations, which is a record over 2016, which was a record, so it’s still climbing.” O’Donnell serves on a group called POINT, aimed at pairing high-risk addicts with treatment centers.
Indiana like many other states is in crisis because their people are dying from opioid addiction. One Republican is standing up to say marijuana is medicine, but let’s not forget the many democrats who have also tried to legislate. For example, Sen. Karen Tallian, D-Portage, who has pushed for years to decriminalize marijuana. When responding to Lucas’ recent statements, Tallian said, “Sometimes it just has to be somebody else’s idea. I’ve always said the left meets the right if you keep going far enough.
Written by stonedandstuff