Despite their being “message bills,” that is, bills designed to distract the public by allowing opponents to argue the 2018 Legislature will have done enough, and that there’s no need for the “radical” ballot initiative (which of course isn’t the case), HB195 and 197 have cleared the HHS Committee and now advance to the whole State Senate.

Clearly the Legislature is not (so far) being moved either by public opinion, nor, in our opinion are logic and clear thinking winning the day, as the public is way ahead of the body’s parochial concerns, but we continue to urge you to contact your senator with your feelings on these bills and the medicinal cannabis issue in general.

The last four years have taught us several things…

1) Even with the facts and public opinion on the side of reform, given how deep the tentacles of the prohibitionist mindset (and various economic incentives now long established by the institutionalized drug wars and their associated corruption), advocates can lose a lot of skirmishes along the way, but that’s no reason to quit being active citizen participants in the political process.

2) Progress can be made. The ballot initiative is the result of the cumulative, years-long efforts of groups like TRUCE and others (we focus on ourselves in this space, but we know and appreciate all advocates of good will)… …and if not for beginning in 2015, coming close with SB73 in 2016 and continuing to build our organizations in 2017 and ’18 despite distractions in the legislature, the state wouldn’t be on the verge of an historic vote this fall.

3) Sometimes bad legislation does fail, even at the last minute. And it’s always worth reminding legislators that their constituents support a real MC program.

So always take heart. And remember the moral of the tortoise and hare fable. We are just going to keep at the goal of safe, legal, equitable, and affordable access for all patients who can benefit from medicinal cannabis for as long as it takes, lumps, bumps, bruises, detours and all.

We so appreciate your support along the way.

Here’s where you can find your Senator:

#MMJ #HB195 #HB197 #UTpol #UTleg #PatientsBeforePolitics #TRUCE    

See full article – 2 cannabis bills advance; resolution on gang violence OKed |