Marijuana plants grow under green lights to simulate night in a vegetation room at Compassionate Cultivation, a licensed medical cannabis cultivator and dispensary, on Dec. 14, 2017, in Manchaca, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

In red-state Oklahoma, marijuana ballot question splits people of faith

OKLAHOMA CITY (RNS) — As Presbyterian minister Bobby Griffith sees it, legalizing medical marijuana in Oklahoma could help arthritis sufferers with chronic pain and veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder.

The 41-year-old husband and father has a personal reason, too, for supporting State Question 788 — a pro-marijuana initiative that the Bible Belt state’s voters will decide June 26.

“For myself, I would be interested in a prescription for it to see if it works better than my anxiety and depression medications,” said Griffith, co-pastor of a Presbyterian church near downtown Oklahoma City and a member of the national group Clergy for a New Drug Policy.

Bobby Griffith, one of the pastors of City Pres OKC, a Presbyterian Church in America congregation in Oklahoma City, supports legalizing medical marijuana in Oklahoma. Photo courtesy of Bobby Griffith


 This image is available for web publication. For questions, contact Sally Morrow.

As Griffith characterizes it, the Oklahoma ballot measure’s potential to improve health outcomes and reduce dependence on addictive opioid painkillers makes it a “moral issue.”

Religious opponents counter that backing the issue would be immoral. Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla., an ordained Southern Baptist pastor, blasts the ballot measure as a “recreational marijuana vote disguised as medical marijuana.”

“The moral issue to me is really a family issue,” Lankford, who directed a Baptist youth camp before his 2010 election to Congress, told Religion News Service.

“The best thing for our state is not to get more parents and grandparents to smoke marijuana,” added the senator, who filmed a commercial urging voters to reject State Question 788. “To have our communities more drug-addicted and distracted, that doesn’t help our families. It doesn’t make us more prosperous. It doesn’t make our schools more successful.”

About 30 states have passed medical marijuana laws, starting with California in 1996, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

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Oklahoma would be the first to do so without listing qualifying conditions. That, assert critics, would allow doctors to issue two-year marijuana licenses to patients for any reason. The Oklahoma State Medical Association cites a lack of “evidence-based studies” to support medical marijuana.

“It’s trying to trick the people of Oklahoma into buying into it,” said the Rev. Paul Abner, an Assembly of God pastor who leads an anti-marijuana coalition called Oklahoma Faith Leaders.

On the other hand, Oklahomans for Health, the most vocal group rallying support for the ballot measure, says all patients and their doctors “should have the freedom to consider all available medical care options.”

While that group has no overt religious message, faith arguments are prominent in a state where three out of four residents describe themselves in Gallup polling as "moderately religious" or "very religious."

The vote — which will take place on the state’s primary day for governor and other state and federal offices — resulted from a petition signed by nearly 68,000 voters and presented to state officials two years ago.

If State Question 788 passes, Abner warns, Oklahoma could follow the nine states that have authorized recreational use of marijuana.

“The key thing is that it’s not medical,” he said. “This is something that’s hiding behind that (terminology) to bring recreational marijuana to Oklahoma. And from a spiritual standpoint, none of us can sustain the sound minds and healthy bodies God desires us to have when we place ourselves under the controlling influence of something other than the Holy Spirit.”

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Other religious opponents include top officials of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma — representing the state’s roughly 577,000 Southern Baptists — and the Catholic Conference of Oklahoma, the public policy arm of the state’s Roman Catholic dioceses, comprising roughly 288,000 parishioners.

“My hope is that Oklahoma will vote down marijuana legalization and continue to put legal barriers between addiction and the communities it devastates,” Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, said in a statement published by The Baptist Messenger, an Oklahoma newspaper.

Jon Middendorf, senior pastor of Oklahoma City's First Church of the Nazarene, speaks to the congregation on January 29, 2017. RNS photo by Bobby Ross Jr.


 This image is available for web publication. For questions, contact Sally Morrow.

But Jon Middendorf, senior pastor of Oklahoma City First Church of the Nazarene, said he favors “whatever can bring relief to folks who are in chronic pain.”

“I’m just exhausted of conspiracy theories that always seem to emanate from the Christian right,” said Middendorf, who stressed that he was speaking personally and not on behalf of his congregation.

“There’s always some sinister story behind it all,” he added. “It really might be that somebody who’s in pain just needs something that hasn’t been tried just yet, that offers some help for relief and quality of life, that they would not have had otherwise.”

Former state Sen. Connie Johnson. Photo courtesy of the Oklahoma State Senate


 This image is available for web publication. For questions, contact Sally Morrow.

Former state Sen. Connie Johnson, a Democrat running for governor who supports the marijuana initiative, acknowledged that she sees it as the first step toward approving full recreational use.

Legalizing marijuana use would help reduce Oklahoma’s mass incarceration rate, now one of the highest in the nation, said Johnson, a longtime member of the Church of the Living God in Oklahoma City.

“Suffer the little children to come unto me,” Johnson told RNS, quoting Jesus’ words in Matthew 19:14 of the New Testament. “Our children’s lives are just beset with issues of locking up their parents and putting them in the pipeline to prison,” she added, pointing to potential economic and health benefits of medical marijuana.

Typically, Oklahomans rank among the most conservative voters in the nation:

• In the 2016 election, President Trump won big in the Sooner State, receiving 65 percent support.
• An even higher proportion of voters — 66 percent — supported a pro-death-penalty measure in that same election.
• More recently, Gov. Mary Fallin signed a bill last month allowing private adoption agencies to turn away same-sex couples and other prospective parents who don’t meet their religious criteria.

But on the medical marijuana issue, recent polling shows State Question 788 enjoying support from 57.5 percent of voters and seeming likely to pass, reported Bill Shapard, CEO of SoonerPoll.com.

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“We’ve polled this issue multiple times over the last five years, and we continue to see that certain groups, who one might think would be opposed to SQ788, continue to support it,” Shapard said in a statement. “Thirty years ago, these groups would have opposed it, but roughly half have changed their minds since then.”

Griffith, whose congregation is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church in America, said some of his most conservative friends support State Question 788.

Brett Farley. Photo by Jacqueline Farley


 This image is available for web publication. For questions, contact Sally Morrow.

“A very conservative person I know — I mean, she loves President Trump but she also wants medical marijuana,” he said. “She has rheumatoid arthritis and wants to have something that helps relieve the pain and has some healing qualities about it without the addiction.”

Brett Farley, executive director of the Catholic Conference of Oklahoma, recognized that medical marijuana’s opponents face difficult odds.

“National trends are undeniably moving … in the direction of medical marijuana and increasingly to recreational use,” Farley said in an email. “We believe this is symptomatic of a cultural shift in the West, away from institutions and values that have served as the foundation of Western society for millennia."

Oklahoma, Farley added, is still rooted in traditional Christian ethics. "But the barriers are quickly coming down.”

Comments

  1. There’s no way anyone who favors legalized liquor can logically argue against legalized marijuana. Alcohol is responsible for far more pain and suffering and the long-term effects of alcohol abuse are beyond dispute.

    Mind you, I’m not a teetotaler. I just think people should acknowledge the hypocrisy of a society that has a bar on every corner but begrudges people with medical conditions the relief of an occasional joint.

  2. Okay, all you fundamentalists out there: please instruct me where in the Bible or the Ten Commandments it says, “Thou shalt not smoke weed.”

  3. If this is a moral question, then ban alcohol. Follow it by banning tabaccy, since health is also a moral issue.

    And then get back to me.

  4. Or people without medical conditions who want a joint when e harm caused by marijuana, if any, is absolutely minuscule compared to the harm caused by alcohol.

  5. I dare these uneducated naysayers to spend 24 to 72 hours with children and adults who suffer from uncontrolled seizures. Let them take note of the massive amounts of organ destroying chemicals the medical industry recommends.
    My liver and kidneys are taking feckin’ beating now and I would prefer THC oil over this pump inserted into my belly and spine.

  6. But apparently people of faith in Oklahoma could not be bothered to care about their state so underfunded public schools that in some areas can’t teach 5 days a week.

    Nor could they care that oil and gas interests are given a free ride for taxes, don’t contribute much for jobs and dump pollution in poor/working class communities.

    But go ahead, chime in about recreational use of weed.

  7. The only difference I can see is that legislators like to drink but not so many like to toke. If grass was their drug of choice, there’d be no debate.

  8. It should be noted that the Presbyterian Church in America is a relatively conservative denomination (as opposed to the larger, more liberal Presbyterian Church USA). That one of its pastors supports legalization is a telling sign of where things are going.
    I’m not a fan of marijuana, but mainly because of the smell. It stinks up everything: street corners, apartment hallways, my kids’ bedroom — in a way that doesn’t seem to come with tobacco. But that has little to do with medical marijuana. I appreciate the honesty of the legislator who admitted this is a first step toward general legalization. We need more of that, not Orwellian language like “Oklahomans for Health.” I’ve seen this trend in many controversial topics of late. At one point, when New York’s legislature was debating legalizing gay marriage (this was before Obergefell), there was one organization named something like “New Yorkers for Marriage” and one called “Marriage for New York.” And they had diametrically opposed views on the subject.

  9. Vaping cannabis oil is a great alternative to dry herb. Almost no odor, or you can get it in banana or blueberry or a host of other flavorings!

  10. Merle Haggard declared in a 1969 song that “We don’t smoke marijuana in Muskogee.” (My guess is the initiative fails in OK for that reason. Could be wrong. We’ll see what happens when it happens.)

  11. You can count on Big Pharma to lobby against any and all proposals for medical marijuana, and recreational use for that matter. It’s their worst nightmare. Imagine, a miracle drug anyone can grow at home.

  12. Or, much more likely, if they would admit it’s their drug of choice.

  13. Maybe the Democrats. I don’t doubt that most Republicans are sincere drunks. ?

  14. “We don’t smoke marijuana in Muskogee”
    Don’t need weed. Got plenty of meth.

  15. 9 states have fully legalized recreational cannabis including: Washington, Maine, California, Vermont, Massachusetts, Nevada, Colorado, Oregon, Alaska plus Washington DC. 29 states and counting have legalized “medical” cannabis! Cannabis prohibition is a ridiculous waste of police and court resources that wrongfully persecutes and criminalizes cannabis consumers!

    Celebrate democracy at work with FREE states ending government corruption! Citizens demanding the return of their rights and their freedom!

    Data from the Center for Disease Control proves that cannabis is safer than alcoholic beverages and tobacco products which are completely legal. Based on that fact alone CANNABIS SHOULD BE COMPLETELY LEGAL.

    The Madness is over, Legalize Recreational Cannabis Nationwide!

  16. Yes, Sen. Johnson, the Dealers and the Cartel Guys fully agree with you. THEY know that legalizing medical weed sales for any reason, automatically means a huge recreational weed gold-rush. You say, “Suffer the little children to come unto Me” (Matt. 19:14), while the dealers and gangs say, “Yes Ma’am, we got it. Suffer the little children to come unto US!!!

    They know it’s been a great Win-Win for them in Colorado and California, etc. Colorado started out the same as Oklahoma is now: Lotsa media testimonies about real people suffering from painful diseases and conditions. And the suffering IS a real issue.

    But the Pushers and the Gangs KNEW, that if Colorado voters snapped under the pressure, that they could move in & move up, big-time, entrenched like ticks, the real winners. They knew Colorado’s budget was too thin for adequate policing, monitoring, or even merely LOCATING all the “medical dispensaries” that would pop up. And they knew Colorado’s high school kids would just LOVE all the fancy new candy and brownies being marketed to them as a medical “Wellness Product”. (No, I’m not joking.) Yes indeed, suffer the little children!

  17. Don’t forget all of those earthquakes tied to fracking. Unless it’s because god is pissed that Oklahomans did whatever damnfool thing they did recently.

  18. Like all smoked stuff, it should stay outdoors.

  19. There’s a non medical weed gold rush right now, except that it is unregulated, unlicensed and untaxed. Illegalizing drugs has never done a thing to stop them, though it has done a great deal of good for organized crime.

  20. There is simply no reason to have a legal imprimatur for booze while subjecting marijuana users to a criminal state. Alcohol is actually somewhat more harmful to the individual and to society.

  21. But Jon Middendorf, senior pastor of Oklahoma City First Church of the Nazarene, said he favors “whatever can bring relief to folks who are in chronic pain.”

    That sounds like the best answer about this matter.

  22. Except nothing keeps them from making a big profit from it, once legalized.

    These are the people who already put drugs as powerful and addictive as heroin out to the general public.

    They could make it more concentrated, in pill form, and in every Duane Reade.

    Big pharma and big aggie are likely to mechanize and commercialize weed far better than small growers can.

  23. Portugal decriminalized all major drugs. They had only 25 deaths from overdose in 2017. The US had 65,000. Even when factoring in population differences it is still 350x higher. Prohibition is not working. All it does is fill prisons.

    Of course the only real evidence of suffering is coming from the CO legislature. Heavily taxing weed has not been a fiscal panacea. Especially when larger more wealthy interests are getting huge tax breaks.

  24. Fact. Marijuana is less addictive and less harmful than Caffeine, let alone Alcohol is less addictive and less harmful than Caffein e, let alone Alcohol and Tobacco; (3 Scientific Studies)
    BTW, Dr Henningfield is a former NIDA Staffer;.
    Addictiveness of Marijuana- ProCon.Org
    procon.Org/view.background-resource.php?resourceID=1492

    The US Govt says Sched l is untenable.
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3358713/

    “Based on evidence currently available the Schedule I classification is not tenanble; it is not accurate that cannabis has no medical value, or information on safety is lacking.”

    https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/marijuana/marijuana-gateway-drug
    “The majority of people who use marijuana do not go on to use other, “harder” substances. “

  25. Legal pot in California is much more expensive than the same stuff obtained elsewhere. No one I know who smokes regularly goes to the legal store at all.

  26. Now this guy sounds like an actual Christian!

  27. Hypocritical moralist sit with a beer or mixed drink in their hand and criticize cannabis saying it’s a sin against God! They ignore the fact that it has been proven over and over again that cannabis is far safer to consume than alcoholic beverages or tobacco products which are completely legal. If the body is a temple as the Bible tells us, then consuming a substance that is less harmful and dangerous would seem to move in the direction of Bible teachings not against them!

  28. I wonder if national level legalization would cause a drop in prices.

  29. I’ll venture to guess most ‘critics’ have never tried Cannabis. They should all be forced to try it before having an opinion.

  30. Do conservatives ever get tired of predicting DIRE CONSEQUENCES for every social advance… only to be proven wrong, every time? Gay marriage was supposed to ruin the country; and before that, it was interracial marriage; before that, votes for women; before that, slavery; etc., etc.

  31. It might give us something closer to the freer market anti-drug and anti-gummint Republicans are so enamored of, except for the trade wars

  32. Big Cartel and Big Gangbanger likes those big profits as well.

  33. This ain’t Portugal. Far more people, far more crooks, far more victims, far more kids at risk.

  34. Glad you said that. Can’t stop the illegal weed pushers by legalizing weed. Not in Colorado, California, or anywhere else.

    Dealers and Gangs know weed customers want lower prices, and you can only offer lower prices by skipping all the paperwork and regulations of the state law. So they just skip it, knowing that state budgets are too tight to simultaneously permit AND fight drugs.

  35. Right, we have far more racism and corruption entangled with our drug policies than they do.

    We have far more crooks are enabled by prohibition both gangsters and in government and far more victims due to the legal stigma attached to addiction and the lack of sane handling of the issue.

    Both organized criminals and government engage in wholesale attacks on society with drug prohibition.

    You want to protect kids, treat MJ and other drugs the same way we do tobacco and alcohol. You want more dead kids and violence, keep doing what we are doing.

  36. Doesn’t ever work that way. See Las Vegas. When corporations move in, gangsters get shut out. Any large pharma company has far more resources at hand than the largest narcotrafficker in the world.

  37. Trade wars are much easier to deal with than drug turf wars. More lawyers, less guns.

  38. The crack, heroin, Meth, and PCP dealers all want voters to legalize THEIR mess too. No prohibitions!

  39. Irrelevant. This discussion is about pot.

    But, as Friedman noted, the deadly addition of fentanyl and carfentanil are driven by ease of smuggling. Legalizing opium derivitives would likely reduce the opioid epidemic morbidity and mortality.

  40. But **these** gangsters don’t move out of places like CO and CA. They are now entrenched worse than ticks. Big Pharma has never been a threat to them, because even Big Pharma gotta stay within the official rules, regs, laws, and taxes. Pushers don’t.

  41. Gangsters who lose the profit making business lose their gangs or are forced into other avenues if they want to survive. Prohibition of narcotics enables organized crime in a way that far surpassed prohibition of alcohol in the 20’s. “Just say no” meant just say $$$.

    Big Pharma is not to be trifled with. Roseanne Barr’s career could have survived making racist tweets about public figures. But when she blamed the acts on the drug Ambien, she insulted its producer, Sanofi. Big Pharma did not take the insult lightly. Hence her show is cancelled and her past show is pulled from syndication and streaming.

  42. Yes, for the sake of “protecting kids”, let’s just legalize the entire pantheon of killler street drugs out there, not just the gateway entry-level drug of marijuana. No more prohibition. Let’s sell ’em at Wal-Mart just like tobacco and alcohol. And forget about the list of known mental & physical downsides that Weed does to people.

    And while we’re at it, let’s stop making cigs and booze so expensive and hard to get with all those burdensome regulation. Age restrictions are just another form of prohibition, and prohibition don’t work, right?

  43. The great thing about it is, it has been proven to work. As seen by the precipitous decline in OD deaths in countries which decriminalize them.

    The bad thing about your view is it has proven to be destructive, ineffective and enables organized crime, and murder.

    Of course the “gateway” part of MJ is simply from its illegality. More myth and self-fullfiling prophesy than fact. No more really than tobacco or alcohol. Also added to it the general stigma and nonsense handling of drug use in general lumps things together which do not belong.

    “And forget about the list of known mental & physical downsides that Weed does to people.”

    None of which are worse than anything available to the general public these days. There is no rational cause for making it illegal in light of such things.

    “And while we’re at it, let’s stop making cigs and booze so expensive and hard to get with all those burdensome regulation. Age restrictions are just another form of prohibition, and prohibition don’t work, right? ”

    Except that such regulations are not burdensome at all or make them prohibitively expensive. As seen by the huge tobacco and alcohol sales in the US. Weed would be much better if treated the same way as cigs and booze. Your analogy is a failure.

  44. ““The best thing for our state is not to get more parents and grandparents to smoke marijuana,” added the senator, who filmed a commercial urging voters to reject State Question 788. “To have our communities more drug-addicted and distracted, that doesn’t help our families. It doesn’t make us more prosperous. It doesn’t make our schools more successful.”

    I understand what the good senator is saying here, and he’s totally WRONG! We’ve confronted this issue here in the state of Colorado nearby. I’ve come 180 degrees since this issue began several years ago. I’ve come to believe that medicinal marijuana can give comfort to sufferers of many illnesses, and therefore, should be legalized. My main argument was that making pot legal would just facilitate its use by younger and younger kids. A friend of mine shot that down when she said, “Sabe, those younger kids are already scoring their pot from illegal sources. Perhaps legalizing it would help put some of those undesirables out of business.”

    I understand the position of the Southern Baptists. I grew up as one of them, and there’s a BIG Puritanical element in that denomination that doesn’t want ANYONE, ANYWHERE to have any fun! That’s why they’re also against the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages–although many Southern Baptists buy and drink plenty of it secretly. I was a pain in the butt of my youth leaders back then by arguing that alcohol might as well be legal since people will buy and drink it anyway. Our dry county would not get any tax money to pay for the pathologies that happen from alcohol abuse. That money now comes from the taxpayers’ pocket.

    BTW, I’ve read recent research that about 14% of the residents here smoked pot before we legalized both classes of marijuana, and about the same percentage smoke it now. Lots of “medicinal marijuana smokers” are really just recreational pot smokers, since the tax on recreational marijuana is 15%, and for medicinal marijuana it’s just 7.5% That’s an easy one, but all of them smoked “the weed” previously, paying more although it was tax free. They got it from illegal sources.

  45. ” Legalizing opium derivitives would likely reduce the opioid epidemic morbidity and mortality.”

    Which has occurred in countries where they have done it.

  46. “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” -Luke 6:31

    None of us would want our kids put in jail and their future jeopardized due to a criminal record over a little cannabis. None of us would want the police to confiscate and sell our home because of growing a couple of plants to help with the aches and pains of growing older, some other ailment, or to simply relax after a day’s work. Treat other people the way we would want to be treated.

  47. Those who believe in limited government, personal responsibility, free markets, and individual liberty should embrace the ending of this irrational, un-American cannabis prohibition. It should be the cornerstone of current GOP policy.

    About half of the U.S. population has tried cannabis, at least 15% use it regularly, over 80% of high school seniors have reported cannabis “easy to get” for decades. Those who really want to use cannabis heavily already are. Prohibition does little or nothing to prevent problematic use. In many cases prohibition makes cannabis usage problematic where it would not have been otherwise, be it light, moderate, or heavy usage. For the most part, cannabis prohibition only successfully prohibits effective regulation.

    A few issues created by prohibition: there are no quality controls to reduce contaminants (harmful pesticides, molds, fungus, other drugs), there is no practical way to prevent regular underage sales, billions in tax revenue are lost which can be used for all substance abuse treatment, underground markets for all drugs are empowered as a far more popular substance is placed within them expanding their reach and increasing their profits, criminal records make pursuing many decent careers difficult, police and court resources are unnecessarily tied up by pursuing and prosecuting victimless ‘crimes’, public mistrust and disrespect for our legal system, police, and government is increased, which can be devastating to our country.

    Prohibition is also very expensive, though, a cash cow for a number of powerful groups such as those related to law enforcement and the prison industry. These organizations have powerful lobbies and influence that perpetuate a failed drug policy through ignorance, fear, disinformation and misinformation. This ensures an endless supply of lucrative contracts and grants from the government and its taxpayers to support their salaries, tools of the trade, and other expenses. Cash, property and other assets from civil forfeiture laws also significantly fatten their coffers while often violating civil rights.

    America was built on the principles of freedom and liberty. In some cases there are extreme circumstances that warrant intervention with criminal law. In the case of mind-altering drugs we have already set this precedent with alcohol. Cannabis is less harmful than alcohol to the consumer and especially to others. If we are to have justice, then the penalties for using, possessing and selling cannabis should be no worse than those of alcohol.

  48. The gateway drug theory, that a unique pharmacological effect of cannabis causes the use of hard drugs, has been discredited by the many peer reviewed studies which have examined it. By this metric alcohol and tobacco are the true gateway drugs as nearly all try these before cannabis. [Joy et al. 1999; Morral et al. 2002; Cleveland HH & Wiebe RP. 2008; O’Connell TJ & Bou-Matar CB 2007; Wen et al. 2014; Tristan et al. 2012; Tarter et al. 2006; Van Gundy K & Rebellon CJ. 2010; Vanyukov et al. 2012; Barry et al. 2016]

    If cannabis prohibition has any effect, it makes cannabis a gateway to other illicit drugs. Imagine if beer merchants also sold heroin, cocaine and meth. This is the situation that the prohibition of cannabis creates for its consumers. It places a very popular substance into these otherwise unpopular markets, strengthening them and expanding their reach. Also, when people realize that they were for the most part lied to about the negative effects of cannabis, respect for all laws, especially drug laws, is eroded. This further increases the likelihood of experimentation with other illicit drugs.

    There is a multitude of factors that determine who will use which drug, when and how often. These factors include genetics, environment, personal factors, and likely others yet to be discovered. Given a pre-existing interest in recreational substances combined with a willingness to try illicit substances, cannabis is simply, and predictably, the first illicit substance encountered. This does not mean that cannabis caused later drug use, cannabis use was simply a result of the same influencing factors as hard drug use. Efforts to prevent hard drug abuse are undermined and resources misspent when gateway theory is accepted as valid. A recent extensive review on the subject concluded that: “The promotion of the erroneous gateway theory ultimately does the public a disservice, including the hindering of intervention.”[Vanyukov et al. 2012]

  49. It was conservative Republicans that stopped slavery and passed the 19th Amendment giving women the vote.

  50. No, it was liberal Republicans. Did you miss the great party switch of the civil rights era?

  51. Today’s liberal Democrats are the same as they were in the Civil War. They went on the create the KKK and Jim Crow laws and today they can be seen in the form of Antifa and BLM. Some things never change.

  52. The willful ignorance of conservatives, for example. Read some history and you’ll know better.

  53. I’m all for medical pot but SQ788 isn’t really a medical bill. I’ve read it. You should too. It’s everywhere. It is basically a recreational bill. The plan here seems to be to pass it THEN have the OK senate regulate it after the fact. So it’ll be 2 years before you can even try to get a prescription and then most stuff won’t be covered once the house is done with it. So basically this is a dead measure walking. It’s a real mess.

  54. .
    Three simple questions:

    Where in the Bible are doctors prohibited from prescribing marijuana? Chapter and verse, please.

    Where in the Bible are doctors permitted to prescribe morphine, hydrocodone, codeine, depressants, stimulants, antibiotics, Viagra, etc? Chapter and verse, please.

    Should the Bible be the foundation of our national medical policies, or the source of our national religion policies? Why or why not?
    .

  55. This article is total Bullshit. What is immoral is having big pharma drug dealers kill off people with opioids.The religious right is done in this current year we don’t need them any more and we don’t need them telling “Free People” what they can or can not do.

  56. you are correct booze of the most harm we do to our familys and kids .. adding pot will help for sure lol

  57. Yeah it’s specifically the Baptists that are most heavily opposed to this. Oklahoma is also one of two states that still has 3.2% beer, largely because of the Baptists. You are right that they are against anyone anywhere having fun. They are willing to deny people beneficial medication because it means that they might prevent somebody from using recreational and having a good time. They also have this misconception that if something is illegal that people won’t use it. Interesting how they are so entrenched in that view on vices but are the most anti-gun control people you’ll ever meet.

  58. I have CLL – leukemia – for which there is no treatment or cure. I’m too old for a bone marrow transplant and doctors won’t give pain medication to treat my pain. Marijuana gives me quality of life in that I am able to be productive, participate in life activities that most take for granted.

    It’s time.

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