Vote Yes on State Question 788
Op Ed written for Tulsa chapter of Yes on 788
Yes! Yes will be the easiest vote you cast all year. Twenty-nine U.S. states have already legalized medical marijuana. On June 26th, Oklahoma is next in line to say yes when we vote on State Question 788. Yes to new businesses, new farms, safer medicine, and increased funding for our schools.
I’m not looking to get high, I’m just looking to relax and not be in pain. As Americans, we can choose to drink a beer or enjoy a glass of wine at the end of the day. When I get home from work or on the weekends, I deserve the option to choose marijuana to relieve my throbbing feet and hands. Marijuana helps me wind down without the added calories and negative effects of alcohol. A person cannot overdose and die from marijuana alone like they can with alcohol, prescription painkillers, or even aspirin. Most exciting yet is how modern medical marijuana isn’t all coughing and smoke anymore. Companies in legal states have medicated pain relief balms, ointments, and lotions that are applied directly to the skin to treat conditions like arthritis, muscle spasms, headaches, cramps, and chronic pain.
Voting yes on State Question 788 gives doctors more and safer treatment options for conditions like cancer, diabetes, depression, seizures, Parkinson’s and pain. Voting yes helps veterans use natural medicine to manage their PTSD. Marijuana, also known as cannabis, has been clinically proven to reduce inflammation and pain. In 2003, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services even received a patent, #6,630,507, for the marijuana plant’s antioxidant and neuroprotective benefits.
Voting yes supports states’ rights; it lets Oklahomans’ create our own policy and control access to natural medicine. The people of Oklahoma took measures into their own hands and now all we have to do is vote Yes on State Question 788 that Oklahoma had to place it on the ballot.
Voting yes does not legalize recreational marijuana like some of the critics wrongly state. State Question 788 requires that an Oklahoma Board Certified Physician issues a patient the prescription. Voting yes means it’s up to you and your doctor how best to treat your health.
Voting yes does not mean people can get high at work or smoke in your establishment, or in church. Private businesses still reserve the right to manage their spaces how they see fit and safety regulations regarding drugs in the workplace still apply. Just like people aren’t fired for simply having any other prescription written by their doctor, State Question 788 protects people from being fired simply for having a medical license.
Voting yes could help reduce the opioid addiction epidemic. In 2014, Oklahoma ranked number one for prescription painkiller abuse. Attorney General Mike Hunter called the opioid crisis the deadliest drug epidemic in U.S. history, referencing Oklahoma as nearly ground zero. States with medical marijuana as an alternative to opioids saw reduced amounts of overdose deaths and addiction rates.
Voting yes gives Oklahoma entrepreneurs a chance to enter the Green Rush. The marijuana industry brings in more money to the states that have legalized than it costs to regulate. That’s a win for Oklahoma schools Marijuana business is projected to grow from 5.4 billion in the 2015 to 16 billion by 2020.
Plan a time during the day on Tuesday, June 26th to vote yes on State Question 788. Put a reminder in your phone’s calendar to be the change you wish to see; Vote Yes on State Question 788!