FRANKFORT — The leader of the state's largest religious organization voiced opposition Tuesday to a proposal in the state legislature that would make it legal for people to use marijuana in Kentucky for medical purposes.
"The very idea of thwarting the authority of the Food and Drug Administration and allowing Kentuckians to smoke marijuana under the guise that it is somehow medically beneficial is absurd," said Paul Chitwood, executive director of the 750,000-member Kentucky Baptist Convention.
"Just because other states have taken this step doesn't mean we should legalize another intoxicant, especially one that has been proven to be the first step toward abusing the hard drugs that are claiming so many lives through overdoes," Chitwood said.
House Speaker Greg Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg, filed a bill in this year's legislative session that would allow trained doctors to prescribe marijuana to patients for 21 "debilitating medical conditions," ranging from "severe" nausea to post traumatic stress disorder. The state would have a strict oversight system in place to make sure prescriptions were not abused, Stumbo said.
"I understand this is a learning process, but I hope people will listen to the debate before making up their minds," Stumbo said Tuesday in an email. "This is not recreational marijuana; it is medical marijuana, and they should hear the stories from people who say it has benefited them and their families. My bill is one of the strictest among the states, too; it does not allow smoking, nor does it let individuals grow their own."
- Tommy Meyn"Chitwood said reviews of prescription data in states that have legalized marijuana for medical purposes show that it's not primarily prescribed for people in intense pain or who are terminally ill."
What about the reports that states with medical marijuana have significantly lower rates of prescription pain killer over doses?
media.jamanetwork.com/ news-item/ lower-opioid-overdose-death -rates-associated-with-sta te-medical-marijuana-laws/
- Laverne Fallen Yates · BCTC, Lexington KySo, "what we have seen from other states" is the evidence Mr. Chitwood uses to support his opposition to legalizing medical marijuana? Well, it bothers me greatly that this man (with his asinine assumptions) is leading the state's largest christian organization. So, therefore he is very influential with his opinions. I would like to say to this you, Mr. Chitwood." If you ever have to watch the person you love waste away from cancer and not be able to sleep or hold down food, you may not be so judgemental and condescending to people in a pain that you obviously have never never known about.