MTCIA News & Update

October 23, 2011 News

First, a reminder: When patients send in their paperwork, they need to include the paperwork from their doctors and the paperwork from their providers. Be sure a copy of your driver’s license is included in the paperwork.

Another reminder: The legislature successfully overrode the will of Missoula voters by overturning their lowest priority ordinance for cannabis-related misdemeanors. Please keep in mind that this change has occurred and there may be people who are very happy about that, perhaps even, enthusiastic. Be mindful. Know the rules.

Last week in Roundup, yet another example of lawmakers overriding the will of the citizens took place when the city council voted to ban dispensaries. No citizens stepped up to support the ban during the public hearing. At least fifteen showed up against the ban, including patients, their families, and providers. The citizens who cared said ‘no’ to the ban. The city council said ‘no’ to the citizens. 

It’s rampant – representatives of the people repressing the will of the citizens rather than supporting and enacting it.

It’s not surprising that in such an environment – locally, statewide, nationally – where the will of the people is regularly treated as a time-consuming irritation to be quickly dispensed with, that CI-109, the petition sponsored by the Montana Coalition for Rights, would arise. This initiative would place on the 2012 ballot a constitutional amendment that would disallow the legislature to repeal or amend laws passed by initiative unless and until such changes were approved by the voters (unless stated otherwise within the initiative).

Though fueled in good part by the legislature’s slaughter of Montana’s medical marijuana laws, CI-109 aims at the law-making process, more so than a particular issue. It divests lawmakers of their representative powers when it comes to laws enacted directly by the people through the initiative process.

Though the issue CI-109 addresses is broader than cannabis, exploring its potential impacts on cannabis policy and its development will expand the ongoing conversation about cannabis regulations. Collectively, we’ve been exploring what regulations might create the best system for patients, providers, and communities. CI-109 asks what system, as citizens and voters, might we want to use in our system-building process.

Seems like a reasonable issue to be considering in times such as these where systems appear to be collapsing, fraying, or at the very least, are being challenged, or met with resistance, in a manner like they haven’t been in some time. 

Cannabis policy has a tendency, it seems, to call larger systems into question, whether it’s the health care system, criminal justice system, law-making systems, etc. – systems that are being used to undermine, rather enact, the will of the people.

The to-do list in these times is long: Survive, protect liberty, create safety and quality, promote functionality, fight lies, expose truths, and not be eaten alive by the larger, predatory, dying, and toxic system.

So much to do.