Will Medical Marijuana Be Legalized In Nebraska?

Diana Wulf, spokeswoman, Nebraska HEMP: “It is one of the safest plants on Earth to use”

The discussion has begun about legalizing marijuana for medical purposes in Nebraska.

Three members of the State Board of Pharmacy will quiz their colleagues on the topic at the annual meeting May 22-25 of the National Boards of Pharmacy in Anaheim, Calif., reports Paul Hammel of World-Herald News Service.

The Nebraskans hope to learn more about the pros and cons of legalization and any problems that have arisen in the 14 states that now allow cannabis to be used medicinally.

“It’s probably an issue we’re going to have to address in the future,” said Board Chairman Rick Zarek, a Gothernburg, Neb., pharmacist, who said he had no personal opinion on the subject.

Nebraska legislators declared the issue dead in March, even after the state pharmacy board in neighboring Iowa voted unanimously to recommend that medical marijuana be permitted there.

?Members of a group called Nebraska HEMP (Helping End Marijuana Prohibition) attended a meeting of the Nebraska Board of Pharmacy in April. They plan to return for the board’s July meeting.

A spokeswoman said the group plans to educate the board, and also hopes to launch an initiative petition drive in 2012 to get the medical marijuana issue on Nebraska’s ballot.

“It is one of the safest plants on Earth to use,” said spokeswoman Diana Wulf of Staplehurst.

Carmen Catizone, executive director of the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy, based in Chicago, said medical marijuana is among the top issues facing his members. According to Catizone, this is not only because proposals have been made in many states to legalize the herb for medical purposes, but also because there is so much disagreement on its medical usefulness.

The national pharmacy group held a two-day symposium on medical marijuana in December. No Nebraska board members attended, according to World-Herald News Service.

Catizone said the issue will almost certainly be raised again at the annual meeting next week, especially in view of developments like the Iowa Board of Pharmacy recommendation.

“You kind of expect the Californias and Oregons… but when it hits the heartland like Iowa, that’s when it caught people’s attention,” Catizone said. “To get legs in Iowa was a big deal.”

The Iowa Legislature would still have to vote to legalize medical marijuana there. Only a “narrowly crafted” law — which, in the real word, means one that would exclude many patients who actually need cannabis — would be considered in Iowa, according to conventional wisdom.

Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman has repeatedly expressed his opposition to medical marijuana.

A bill to legalize medical marijuana has never been introduced in the Nebraska Legislature, although several years ago the lawmakers considered legalizing industrial hemp farming.

Wulf, however, plans to continue with her efforts.

“Our intention is by the first of next year to educate Nebraska,” she said. “Marijuana is more than just getting high.”

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6 Responses to Will Medical Marijuana Be Legalized In Nebraska?

  1. Leonard Krivitsky, MD, DD May 15, 2010 at 11:41 am

    Marijuana medicinal plant will eventually be legalized everywhere because guess what: it should not have been illegal in the first place, and people are starting to wake up to this simple fact. Marijuana medicinal plant would never have become illegal, had it not been for the racist prohibitionist Harry Anslinger and his infamous Marijuana Tax Act of 1937 which was motivated not by scientific discoveries, but the most ignominious racist considerations. This status quo cannot be preserved with respect to marijuana medicinal plant that has been used by humans for over 10,000 years without one single fatal outcome, without any physical withdrawal syndrome as opposed to alcohol and most controlled prescription drugs. Cannabis use has been shown to suppress violent behavior, and I am sure that in the future it will be shown to be a “barrier”, rather than a “gateway” to alcohol and hard drug use. In all the polls over 80% of participating public want medical marijuana legalized, since its current classification by the DEA as Schedule I drug is against all scientific reality. But why listen to me in this respect when it is enough to listen to none other than the American Medical Association which now recognized the remarkable medicinal properties of Cannabis Sativa medicinal plant, and is urging the government to change its classification ASAP.
    The “opponents” of marijuana legalization for at least medical use clearly remind me of Marxists, as I fought Marxism long ago just like I fight the Cannabis prohibition right now. After Karl Marx labeled religion “opium for the people”, subsequent Marxists suppressed religion despite the people’s will (just like the prohibitionists do right now with respect to marijuana) saying in effect, “We’ll take opium from the mouths of fools, they will thank us later”. The same thing, that is the Government assuming the role of a final arbiter of what is or is not “good” for the people, instead of the people determining this for themselves.

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  3. JUDE May 15, 2010 at 5:59 pm

    It will happen.
    Support it.
    Give it to the people, not the pharmacuteical companies.

    Stop wasting tax money on enforcement of this insane law, housing “offenders” in jail for nonviolent marijuana use, Spend the saved money on Drug Education and Awareness and on social services.

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