Medical marijuana debate packs Polk State College

11:54 PM, Feb 25, 2014   |    comments
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Tim Blakeley, manager of Sunset Junction medical marijuana dispensary, fills a marijuana prescription on May 11, 2010 in Los Angeles, CA.(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

 

Winter Haven, Florida -- The Polk State College auditorium filled up fast. People on both sides of the issue took their seats to hear the pros and cons of medical marijuana in an open forum debate. But at least one person argued against it -- Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.

"This is a wolf in sheep's clothing, tugging on the heartstrings of the good people of Florida," said Judd.

The sheriff didn't venutre into the science of pot, only his concerns about the amendment's wording and what he calls its true intent.

"The amendment as it is written is not about medical marijuana. Instead, it is the first step to legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes," said Judd.

One of the cannabis advocates who spoke in favor of medical marijuana was a mother with a severely debilitated child.

"It isn't fair that my child, who has severe seizures, should have to wait for politics. He needs cannabis now because it is the only thing that we've tried that works. It is much less harmful, much less addictive, and much less toxic than the host of prescription drugs he has taken," said Kim Sobecki.

Several issues surrounding cannabis were discussed, including access, dosage, cultivation, and more.

As clinical neuropsychologist Dr. Jeff Reddout expressed, "The rhetoric of this issue is still operating in the extremes. It's either too dire or too rosy, and the truth is somewhere in the middle."

Fight for a Bill: 
-Medical pot has enough signatures for ballot
-FL Supreme Court oks medical marijuana initiative for Nov. ballot
-Medical marijuana bill filed in Florida

The Science: 
-Is marijuana more dangerous than alcohol?
-Sanjay Gupta: I was wrong about weed

The Politics: 
-Medical marijuana initiative could help Dems in governor's race
-Gov. Scott will vote against medical marijuana
-Medical marijuana gets traction in the Deep South
-Did he inhale? Rubio won't say whether he ever smoked marijuana
-Debate hits Sarasota: Sheriff vs. John Morgan

The Business Side: 
-Cannabis College opens in Tampa
-New guidelines help banks deal with marijuana business
-Marijuana stocks light up the market
-Recreational pot sales: Where the grass is much greener


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