Medical marijuana protesters call for Gov. Rick Scott to allow smokable pot

Medical marijuana protesters call for Gov. Rick Scott to allow smokable pot

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Medical marijuana activists gathered in Orlando on Wednesday to call on Gov. Rick Scott to drop state appeals and allow patients to smoke and grow pot. The rallies, also held in Tallahassee and West Palm Beach, came a week after an appellate court refused to allow smokable medical marijuana while a legal fight initiated by Orlando attorney John Morgan makes its way through the courts. Morgan, acting on behalf of ALS patient Cathy Jordan, sued the state last year after the Legislature passed laws banning the sale of smoking products, citing a health risk. Morgan said the smoking ban violated the constitutional amendment that allowed medical pot after being approved by more than 70 percent of voters in 2016. Rallygoers also wanted Scott to drop the state’s appeal of a ruling allowing Tampa cancer patient Joe Redner to be able to grow and juice his own medical cannabis. “Let’s get Scott to go ahead and drop all this stuff,” said James O’Malley of St. Cloud, one of about 40 people at the Orlando rally at Lake Eola. “Seventy percent of the people wanted people to be able to smoke. Let’s get it.” Mike Farley of Lakeland said he had been twice addicted to opioids he took for chronic pain before he used cannabis. Les Hodge of Orlo Vista said he hadn’t smoked marijuana for 20 years before he started again to help with his chronic pain. Brett Puffenbarger, a Marine Corps veteran from Altamonte Springs and spokesman for the veterans group “Buds for Vets,” talked about how medical marijuana has helped his fellow vets deal with pain and PTSD. “A lot of the time we’re afraid to be out in public, a lot of the time we’re afraid to say what we’re going through,” he said. “[But] cannabis is […]

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