Vote May Make Medical Marijuana Legal in Illinois

Vote May Make Medical Marijuana Legal in Illinois
Posted by CN Staff on March 01, 2006 at 20:54:37 PT
By Jamie Smith
Source: Daily Vidette 
Illinois -- The Senate Health and Human Services Committee passed a bill last week by a 6-4 vote that could make medical marijuana legal in Illinois if passed by the General Assembly. "If in fact a doctor has recommended marijuana as the preferred treatment for some medical condition causes me to see no basis whatsoever for the state to interfere with that decision," Philosophy Professor Michael Gorr said.
The bill would allow patients with a need for the substance to grow marijuana plants with a physician's approval."I think that allowing people to grow this drug in their own home will lead to a lot more use of it for non-medical reasons," sophomore political science major Jenny O'Reilly said.Passing this bill causes some to wonder if the drug will be used for purposes other than the intended medical need."If others getting a hold of marijuana for non-approved reasons were a concern, there are all different things that we allow in society even though we know that they can be abused. The mere fact that something can be abused is by itself not a reason for prohibiting it," Gorr said.Illinois' decision to pass this bill has surprised some."I think that there is a strong argument to be made in legalizing medical marijuana," Assistant Political Science Professor David Weiden said. "However I think it is completely dependent on the culture of an individual state."Some states see the need for medical marijuana and others do not want it to become legalized in any way."Some states, it would be very acceptable and other states it would be completely against their culture," Weiden said.The need for marijuana in the medical field has been researched and found to be necessary."From what I have read, there are respected medical authorities who claim that medical marijuana is effective in ways that alternatives are not and it's just to me astonishing that government officials could commend and just ignore that evidence, which is what they have done in many cases," Gorr said.While Illinois may be looking to make medical marijuana legal, the United States is not interested."Until the federal laws are changed, it doesn't matter what states do because there is a doctrine called preemption which means federal law trumps state law and at this point, the federal law states no medical marijuana period," Weiden said.California has passed this bill and clinics who used the drug were shut down by the federal government. "If the California experience is any guide, the federal authorities have made it quite clear that even if a state makes medical marijuana available, they will not allow this to happen and they will shut those places down," Weiden said.Until a law is passed under the federal government, states may not be successful with legalizing medical marijuana."There is really not any chance that a state is going to circumvent the federal government at this point unless there is a change in the administration in three years…but at this point I am seeing it as a largely symbolic campaign," Weiden said. Source: Daily Vidette (IL Edu)Author: Jamie SmithPublished: March 02, 2006Copyright: 2006 Daily VidetteContact: vidette ilstu.eduWebsite: Articles: Legislation Allowing MMJ Advances To Senate Pot Has Tough Test for Legislature To Pass Marijuana Bill
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Comment #1 posted by OverwhelmSam on March 02, 2006 at 02:28:34 PT
The Key Is:
That states don't prosecute medical marijuana consumers. Federal law doesn't really matter if states will not prosecute. It's the numbers game. There are simply not enough federal authorities and courts to prosecute and jail millions of people.
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