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Should Tennessee legalize medical marijuana?

Johnson City Press • Jan 2, 2017 at 12:00 AM

Legislation to legalize marijuana for medical purposes in Tennessee will once again be debated when the state General Assembly convenes on Jan. 10. State Rep. Jeremy Faison, R-Cosby, and Sen. Steve Dickerson, R-Nashville, are planning to introduce legislation to approve medical marijuana.

The Tennessean reported last month that although the measure is being introduced by Republican members, the Nashville newspaper has learned the bill will likely see opposition from key GOP legislators in both chambers, including Majority Leader Rep. Glen Casada, R-Franklin.

Last year a bill to allow military veterans suffering from PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) to be given access to medical marijuana died in a House subcommittee. Similar bills to legalize marijuana for medical use in Tennessee have stalled in the General Assembly in recent years.

Even so, proponents of medical marijuana hope recent efforts to study the healing effects of cannabis oil has opened the door to debate on medical marijuana in this state.

Supporters of medical marijuana believe it can be an effective and safe treatment for the symptoms of cancer, AIDS, multiple sclerosis and glaucoma. They also argue it will spare Tennesseans from getting hooked on prescription pain medication.

Opponents to legalizing medical marijuana, however, say there are various legal drugs already available to treat pain. They also say legalizing medical marijuana is a slippery slope to loosening regulations on other illegal drugs.

We want to know what you think. Should medical marijuana be made legal for Tennessee?

Send your comments to [email protected] Please include your name, telephone number and address for verification.

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