Letters

Letters 07-25-2016

Remember Bush-Cheney Does anyone remember George W. Bush and Dick Cheney? They were president and vice president a mere eight years ago. Does anyone out there remember the way things were at the end of their duo? It was terrible...

Mass Shootings And Gun Control The largest mass shooting in U.S. history occurred December 29,1890, when 297 Sioux Indians at Wounded Knee in South Dakota were murdered by federal agents and members of the 7th Cavalry who had come to confiscate their firearms “for their own safety and protection.” The slaughter began after the majority of the Sioux had peacefully turned in their firearms...

Families Need Representation When one party dominates the Michigan administration and legislature, half of Michigan families are not represented on the important issues that face our state. When a policy affects the non-voting K-12 students, they too are left out, especially when it comes to graduation requirements...

Raise The Minimum Wage I wanted to offer a different perspective on the issue of raising the minimum wage. The argument that raising the minimum wage will result in job loss is a bogus scare tactic. The need for labor will not change, just the cost of it, which will be passed on to the consumer, as it always has...

Make Cherryland Respect Renewable Cherryland Electric is about to change their net metering policy. In a nutshell, they want to buy the electricity from those of us who produce clean renewable electric at a rate far below the rate they buy electricity from other sources. They believe very few people have an interest in renewable energy...

Settled Science Climate change science is based on the accumulated evidence gained from studying the greenhouse effect for 200 years. The greenhouse effect keeps our planet 50 degrees warmer due to heat-trapping gases in our atmosphere. Basic principles of physics and chemistry dictate that Earth will warm as concentrations of greenhouse gases increase...

Home · Articles · News · Features · MS Patient Faces Hearing for...
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MS Patient Faces Hearing for Medical Marijuana

Eartha Melzer - July 8th, 2004
At the age of 29, Matthew Barber, a disabled Gulf War vet, was diagnosed with terminal multiple sclerosis. He became paralyzed, lost his memory, and experienced extreme pain from lesions on his brain.
Barber tried all conventional treatments, with no improvement. Medical bills cost Matthew and his wife Laura everything they owned, and Laura had to quit her job to take care of him.
Two years ago while in the VA medical center for emergency treatment of Matthew’s agony and paralysis, the Barbers were told by a visiting neurologist (from California) that marijuana was the only treatment that offered promise for MS patients.
Because marijuana is not legal for medical use in Michigan, the Barbers had to break the law to get Matthew marijuana.
Smoking marijuana, Matthew improved significantly.
Last month the Barbers were stopped for speeding. Police searched their vehicle and discovered Matthew’s cannabis -- two ounces -- a month’s supply.
The couple explained that they had the marijuana for medicinal reasons. They say the police were civil and apologetic as they arrested them and took them to jail.

WON’T STOP
On Tuesday, July 6, the Barbers go to court for a pre-trial hearing on the charge of criminal possession of cannabis.
Matthew says he will not stop using marijuana. Laura says she will not stop helping him get the marijuana he needs,
“I have seen the change in my husband in 18 months of doing this,” Laura says. “My husband is able to walk. Not long distances, but he has more use of himself than he has had in the last three years. We have noticed a slow down in the progression of the lesions in his brain.”
Matthew feels that God had a hand in developing this legal situation.
“We were tired of sneaking around,” he said. Matthew had prayed about what to do and received a message: don’t walk in fear; find a solution so you don’t have to be afraid.
The Barbers are now ready to face a jury trail in hopes of establishing the right to use medical marijuana. They feel that Matthew’s life will be in jeopardy if he is imprisoned and forced to stop using cannabis. They say they chose to face this risk and argue the issue not just for themselves but for all the critically-ill people who use medical marijuana and are forced to live in fear.
In related news, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed last week to hear a case on the legality of medical marijuana.

Marijuana activists
plan show of support



The local Michigan Cannabis Action Network chapter is planning to rally outside the Grand Traverse County courthouse at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, July 6 to show support for Matt and Laura Barber.
“He is not willing to go back to existing in a fog of pain, nausea, and drugged confusion, unable to walk, needing to be catheterized or diapered,” said activist Melody Karr in a release to local media. “The possession of cannabis in any amount in Michigan is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail and/or a $2000 fine. If Matthew goes to jail and is unable to use cannabis, he will experience a re-admittance and exacerbation of his disease within a matter of days, and death is a real possibility. Other medical cannabis patient-advocates have been killed in exactly this way.”
Karr said the Barber’s attorney will request leniency in light of Matt’s condition and the fact that his use is medicinal. “But because there is no medical marijuana law in Michigan, and the federal government has interfered extensively in states which do have medical marijuana laws, this is by no means a foolproof tactic.”




 
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