SPRINGFIELD, Mo.–With less than two weeks to go before the election, advocates of medical marijuana are pushing for your vote on some amendments that would legalize it.
The group Springfield NORML-an association of people who believe that medical marijuana helps with certain illnesses, hosted a town hall on Thursday evening at Schweitzer-Brentwood Library.
At the town hall were t-shirts, buttons, and flyers; all up for grabs to advertise the need for medical marijuana. While there are three different medical marijuana measures on the ballot, most of the advocates at the town hall are for Amendment 2 including 7th congressional district candidate, Jamie Schoolcraft.
“I think it leaves the most access to people who truly need it without giving them a lot of causes that’s going to make it cost prohibited,” says Schoolcraft.
For Ashley Markum, she knows first hand about the possible benefits of medical marijuana.
“My five-year-old son, Ayden has intractable epilepsy and cerebral palsy and we’ve tried countless medications for both of those conditions and we have not found anything to help or anything that is affective and we’d like to be able to try medical marijuana for his aliments,” says Markum.
Markum, along with Schoolcraft expressed how medical marijuana could also cut back on opioid overdoses.
“I’m a physician assistant, I take care of patients on a daily basis and I’v seen the disaster of the opioid epidemic in Southwest Missouri. It’s killing so many of our neighbors,” says Schoolcraft.
But, not everyone is praising the affects of medical marijuana treatment. Dr. Norman Shealey of Shealy Wellness in Springfield sees the harm in legalizing the drug.
“It destroys your ability to function and think straight and it is highly addicting. It is much more addicting than nicotine and so making it available for the few uses it has just opens the door as it has for so many drugs for misuse and abuse,” says Dr. Shealy.
Instead of using medical marijuana for pain, Dr. Shealy offers another alternative.
“I have treated numerous people who have had uncontrollable epilepsy by just adding taurine and magnesium lotion on the skin,” says Dr. Shealy.
To make your voice heard on this issue, election day is November 6th to place your vote.