Vote to save pot law revision

Print Article

There is probably no better argument against the ballot initiative process than the 2004 law approved by Montana voters that legalized medical marijuana.

The good intentions of the people of Montana to ďallow the production, possession and use of marijuana by patients with debilitating medical conditionsĒ turned out to give free rein to an unregulated, multi-million dollar industry that basically oversaw the de facto legalization of marijuana.

Eventually, it became clear to almost everyone that it wasnít ďpatients with debilitating medical conditionsĒ who were the main beneficiaries of the medical marijuana law; it was marijuana users. They could claim to have any number of untraceable ailments and wind up with their handy-dandy medical marijuana card that was supposed to be a get out of jail free card.

Two probems: 1) That wasnít what the voters intended, and 2) The federal government wasnít playing along. Marijuana was still a Schedule 1 drug on the list of controlled substances, and the federal law took precedent over state law, leaving users in limbo.

By the time the 2011 Legislature met, it was well past obvious that something needed to change. A law was cobbled together to represent a diverse group of needs ó including those of law enforcement, patients, and municipalities. Senate Bill 423 repealed the 2004 initiative that wasnít working and replaced it with an entirely new program. Afterwards, citizens who supported medical marijuana put Initiative Referendum 124 on the ballot to repeal SB 423.

Itís complicated, as it seems all ballot initiatives are, but the bottom line is that voters need to decide if they liked the way the medical marijuana program was working under the 2004 law.

In our experience, the old law did not work and the patients who needed medical marijuana were probably not the ones most likely to be getting it. Therefore, we support Senate Bill 423 as an imperfect solution that will make a good starting point to try to bring sanity back to the stateís drug regulations.

We urge you to vote FOR Senate Bill 423 and enact a new, more tightly regulated medical marijuana program. The old system just didnít work, and we should never go back to that again.

††

Print Article

Read More Editorial

Your vote matters ó make it count

October 18, 2017 at 8:28 am | Daily Inter Lake City government plays a vibrant role in our everyday daily lives. Maybe itís a new roundabout impeding your route to work, a spike in your water bill, or a big subdivision that just popped up acros...

Comments

Read More

Drug court makes sense for Flathead

October 15, 2017 at 5:00 am | Daily Inter Lake As Flathead Valley law-enforcement agencies battle an increase in the use of meth, heroin and prescription medicines, itís encouraging to hear judicial officials and law-enforcement leaders talking s...

Comments

Read More

Bump-stock ban isnít gun control

October 13, 2017 at 11:24 am | Daily Inter Lake Most of us, like most of you, had never heard of a bump stock until a few weeks ago when the Las Vegas massacre proved their deadly punch. But once becoming aware of them, it was a quick and easy d...

Comments

Read More

EDITORIAL: Donít make hasty decision on county jail site

October 08, 2017 at 5:00 am | Daily Inter Lake Itís more or less a foregone conclusion that Flathead County likely will have to find a site to build a new adult detention center thatís big enough to hold the countyís prison population well into t...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(406) 755-7000
727 East Idaho
Kalispell, MT 59901

©2017 Daily Inter Lake Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X