Though lies and propaganda were used by the Liquor Control Board and 502 profiteer lobbyists to succeed this legislative session, one thing is clear—the community is united to save the voter approved medical cannabis. Their response is happening in three ways.
(1) I-1372, the citizen initiative gathering signatures for the November ballot with a July 2, 5 pm deadline that would supersede SB 5052.
(2) R-76, a referendum filed on sections of SB 5052 for the November ballot gathering signatures for a July 23, 5 pm deadline.
(3) An injunction being filed for July 24 (when many other sections of SB 5052 are scheduled to be implemented).
With 20,000 mail-in petitions for I-1372 going out in all copies of the June issue of the Northwest Leaf, sponsor Kirk Ludden’s “never give up, never surrender” attitude continues despite those saying it is not possible, and a mass media indifference to six major press releases in five months.
Ludden quoted Gandhi when the subject is brought up: “To believe what has not occurred in history will not occur at all is to argue the disbelief in the dignity of man.” He went on to say, “More people are discovering what our Representatives did to patients this session, and are not happy. Volunteers have come together to get this out there. 40,000 petitions are out there and more still going out means enough to qualify, anything is possible. If not this year, no doubt next year.” (Petitions:www.cppwa.org)
Kirk explained that the existence of three fronts to protect medical marijuana gets the word out there about the bad things done to the patient community by politicians in Olympia. He explained why, even if I-1372 doesn’t qualify, why it is not wasted effort.
“Not enough money was raised in time to pay signature gatherers; that fact and additional sponsors makes those signatures mean more when presented to the Representatives this summer. It will also be refilled next year, and signature gathering will begin by January 15 or 19.
“The gofundme account to pay for signature gathers will be changed for next year,” Ludden said. “With a goal of $950,000, the more money raised means more to pay the gathers. This means qualifying that much quicker.”
R-76 (www.r76NO.org) was filed on those sections of SB 5952 that would be implemented in July 2016, closing many medical cannabis dispensaries. If the sections are rejected by the voters, then Olympia can still get the message that the People are not happy with how their will has been blatantly disregarded by politicians.
If both I-1372 and R-76 fail to qualify, the injunction is designed to stop SB 5052 from violating our state constitution and further federal laws, as well as 4th, 5th, and 6th Amendment rights.
Because of our Representatives’ actions, more patients have become active and learned how Olympia operates. Therefore spreading the word to others, and getting actively involved in contacting their Representatives. It would be in the best interest of the Libertarian Party (and, of course, the Democrats and Republicans, but nobody’s holding their breath) to have pro-medical cannabis candidates run in the next election. The 2016 election will be an interesting one with much change coming to Olympia.
1Steve Elliot is a cannabis activist for many years and contributes to many cannabis publications like www.tokesignals.com