Dear Old Hippie: I am a disabled American veteran living in Arizona (which just recently passed their Medical Marijuana act). With all that I go through with the VA….are we allowed to use MMJ? I wanted to apply for my card here in AZ, but wasn’t sure if I would have repercussions from the VA.
A: Well, it’s OK with me. But with all the disparity between Federal and state law, and especially with the crazy stuff going on right now, you’re wise to address this problem.
But the good news is that there’s good news.
Apparently, while the Obama administration seems to be quite down on medical marijuana in general, they’re quite sensitive to criticism of government treatment of veterans. So to make a long story short, the official policy of the Department of Veterans Affairs is that veterans who are legal MMJ patients in legal MMJ states will not be denied services of the Veterans Health Administration. VA doctors aren’t going to sign a MMJ recommendation for you, though.
This comes as a great relief to many veterans using MMJ for PTSD, chronic pain, or other serious ailments, whether due to their service or otherwise. Some people had been getting treated quite shabbily by morally bankrupt pencil-pushers in the VA. Imagine refusing pain medication to an injured veteran!
Once you get sorted out, you might want to look into joining Veterans For Medical Marijuana Access, who recently started a petition on the White House website to ask the Federal government why they are blocking research into treating PTSD with medical marijuana. And then you could ask President Obama how he expects to get re-elected when 70% of the voting public supports medical marijuana and he keeps attacking it.
And thank you for your service!
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