Oklahoma Christians weigh in over cannabis legalisation vote

Oklahoma Christians weigh in over cannabis legalisation vote June 20, 2018

Canada has just voted to legalise the use of cannabis. In the UK, Theresa May’s useless team of ditherers is currently tying itself in knots over the issue. And in godly Oklahoma some church leaders are urging their flock not to vote to legalise cannabis when a ballot takes place on June 26.
Said the Rev Paul Abner, above, an Assembly of God pastor who leads an anti-cannabis coalition called Oklahoma Faith Leaders:

From a spiritual standpoint, none of us can sustain the sound minds and healthy bodies God desires us to have when we place ourselves under the controlling influence of something other than the Holy Spirit.

Other religious opponents include top officials of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma – representing the state’s roughly 577,000 Southern Baptists – and the Catholic Conference of Oklahoma, the public policy arm of the state’s Roman Catholic dioceses, comprising roughly 288,000 parishioners.
Russell Moore, President of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission said:

My hope is that Oklahoma will vote down marijuana legalization and continue to put legal barriers between addiction and the communities it devastates.

Former state Senator Connie Johnson, a Democrat running for governor who supports the marijuana initiative, acknowledged that she sees it as the first step toward approving full recreational use.
Legalising marijuana use would help reduce Oklahoma’s mass incarceration rate, now one of the highest in the nation, said Johnson, a longtime member of the Church of the Living God in Oklahoma City.
Presbyterian minister Bobby Griffith, a member of the national group Clergy for a New Drug Policy, believes that medical marijuana in Oklahoma could help arthritis sufferers with chronic pain and veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder.
The 41-year-old husband and father has a personal reason, too, for supporting State Question 788.

For myself, I would be interested in a prescription for it to see if it works better than my anxiety and depression medications.


Republican Senator James Lankford, above, an ordained Southern Baptist pastor, blasts the ballot measure as a:

Recreational marijuana vote disguised as medical marijuana. The moral issue to me is really a family issue. The best thing for our state is not to get more parents and grandparents to smoke marijuana.
To have our communities more drug-addicted and distracted, that doesn’t help our families. It doesn’t make us more prosperous. It doesn’t make our schools more successful.

About 30 states have passed medical marijuana laws, starting with California in 1996, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Oklahoma would be the first to do so without listing qualifying conditions. That, assert critics, would allow doctors to issue two-year marijuana licenses to patients for any reason.

Oklahomans for Health, the most vocal group rallying support for the ballot measure, says all patients and their doctors:

Should have the freedom to consider all available medical care options.

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  • Broga

    Meanwhile:
    ” Nearly 70 percent of Americans are on at least one prescription drug, and more than half take two, Mayo Clinic and Olmsted Medical Centre researchers say. Antibiotics, antidepressants and painkilling opioids are most commonly prescribed, their study found. Twenty percent of patients are on five or more prescription medications, according to the findings, published online in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings.
    Of course, these drugs make big money for Big Pharma while causing damaging side effects. The opioid epidemic is out of control but Americans can relax as President Trump says “something must be done.” We are falling for the same swindle that leads to healthy people taking drugs they don’t need and which cause damaging side effects.
    And these pompous berks protest about cannabis.

  • AgentCormac

    Is it just me, or does Senator Lankford look like he should be wearing a hat a bit like this one:
    https://goo.gl/images/vibZti

  • Broga

    AgentCormac: It isn’t just you. I moved on quickly from his photo. Very unsettling. Uncanny resemblance. Probably a relative.
    I’m taking my dog out to help calm my nerves.

  • Angela_K

    There is another addiction, far more dangerous and contagious, especially among the poorly educated – religion. It would be nice if we could eradicate that.
    Science and medicine is a foreign land for religious loons like Abner who prescribe “talking to the hands” but fall back on science when it suits them.

  • Brian Jordan

    The whole issue of medical cannabis is dogged by politics and irrationality. After great fuss, Sativex was licensed for Multiple Sclerosis, only for the price to be set so high that the NHS imediately refused to pay for it (unless you happen to live in Wales). People on the MS Society forum talk of its costing several thousand pounds a year on private prescription – which they say would buy a lot of dope! Can extraction and purification of a natural product really put so much on the price?
    If nothing else, its an argument for the development of drugs being taken out of the hands of big pharma and their role reduced to manufacturing. We might even get some new antibiotics that way.

  • Broga

    Brian Jordan : The aim of Big Pharma is to get healthy people taking a drug for life. An excellent example are statins which, if you have a serious heart problem, may well be needed. After I retired my GP said the government was encouraging people to take statins to prevent future illness. After much discussion – my wife was against as I was so fit – I took them.
    My cholesterol dropped dramatically. A month later I could scarcely walk as my thighs were so painful. I became depressed. After reading an article in the Sunday Times I stopped them immediately. Big Pharma said stopping was dangerous. Three weeks later I had recovered. Big Pharma selects the bits of its research it wants you to know.

  • L.Long

    Correct Angela…religious nut-jobs want you addicted to only one thing —their BS!!
    The buyBull states gawd told adam that all things on earth are for our use.
    ALL drugs should be legal and as available as the two leading killing drugs are. That will then remove most drug related criminal activity, although the loss of income may piss off some cops and political hacks.
    But all those people who will die from drug overdose?? Their problem! Although many religions will be loosing members, still their problem.
    But WHAT ABOUT THE KIDDIES!!! Any one who says that is an idiot. Or they would be pushing to make the two biggest dangerous drugs illegal…nicotine (cigs & vaping) and Booze which almost all kids try.

  • Rob Andrews

    One thing I now for sure. In the states that have medical cannabis, narcotic deaths have gone down.
    The states that have recreational marijuana, there’s been no increase in ‘stoned’ driving or crime in general.
    OT: What concerns me is the fact that a lot of people are on some kind of drug for depression and/or anxiety. And all these school shootings we have had lately. This never happened in the 60s, even though there were a lot of guns then too.

  • Barry Duke

    When I was researching a piece for Round Town News in Spain about cannabis, I discovered that the UK was spending £1.6-BILLION A YEAR in its war on drugs. Legalisation, or deciminalisation – done in conjunction with regulation and taxation – would bring billions into the state coffers, and put unscrupulous drug dealers out of business.

  • Rob Andrews

    “If it wasn’t for prohibition , I’d still be a secondhand furniture dealer from the south side [of Chicago]” –Al Capone

  • Stephen Mynett

    This site, with petition, is worth looking at: https://endourpain.org/

  • Broga

    I signed the petition.

  • Barry Duke

    Thanks for posting that link, Stephen. Signed.

  • Dianne Leonard

    I’m a low-income disabled senior. I have several conditions that would potentially be helped by medical cannabis: severe migraines, epilepsy, Crohn’s disease, and others. I live in California. A couple of years ago, I tried medical cannabis, and in one month my migraines went down from every day to three times a week. I hadn’t expected quick results like that! I wasn’t able to continue with the treatment because the cost was so high. I understand that was true for others, too. California legalized recreational pot in January this year. Since then, the cost of medical cannabis has gone up by 25%, effectively pricing disabled people out. The federal medical programs we have won’t pay for cannabis because the federal government still criminalizes cannabis–for *any* reason. What we need is de-criminalization of “street” drugs, safe legal injection sites, needle exchange sites, and coverage of medical cannabis by insurance. Will that happen in my lifetime? Don’t know; I never would have believed, 50 years ago that California would de-criminalize pot while I was still alive, so–maybe. Doctors here are still unable to recommend medical cannabis to their patients; they could/would lose their licenses if they do. All for the stupid war on drugs!

  • Broga

    Dianne Leonard : That is a heavy weight of disabilities and I am sorry that you are struggling with them.
    I remember reading that President Kennedy had Addison’ disease, a chronically painful back and other problems – syphilis probably. His doctor, a bit of a quack it seems, gave him a concoction of doubtful safety. Another doctor, of the highest repute, warned Kennedy that the concoction would harm him.
    Kennedy’s reply was, “I don’t care if it is horse’s piss. It relieves my pain.” The reputable doctors could not do that. There needs to be far more understanding and support for people who are suffering and want to take what politicians decide is unorthodox. I suspect the acceptible policy is driven by religious opinions.
    Good luck.

  • Broga

    Here are some details about JFK and horse’s piss medicine. I wonder what Trump is on?
    JFK first visited Jacobson in September 1960, shortly before the 1960 presidential election debates.[9] Jacobson was part of the Presidential entourage at the Vienna summit in 1961, where he administered injections to combat severe back pain. Some of the potential side effects included hyperactivity, impaired judgment, nervousness, and wild mood swings.
    Kennedy, however, was untroubled by FDA reports on the contents of Jacobson’s injections, and proclaimed: “I don’t care if it’s horse piss. It works.”[10] Jacobson was used for the most severe bouts of back pain.[11] By May 1962, Jacobson had visited the White House to treat the President thirty-four times,[12][13] although such treatments were stopped by President Kennedy’s White House physicians, who realized the inappropriate use of steroids and amphetamines administered by Jacobson.
    [14] It was later observed that President Kennedy’s leadership (e.g. the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, and other events during 1963) improved greatly once Jacobson’s treatments were discontinued and replaced by a medically appropriate regimen. Dr. Ghaemi, who studied Kennedy’s medical records, concluded there was a “correlation; it is not causation; but it may not be coincidence either”.[14]

  • Stephen Mynett

    Thanks to those who signed the petition. Think I have posted this here before but will repeat anyway.
    Before the modern recombinant Factor VIIIs haemophilia care was quite good but nowhere near what it is now and time laid up in severe pian was normal for quite a few with the condition. Because of this addiction to prescription analgesics was a real problem but one with a solution which could not be legally used.
    I remember one of my specialists saying to me how it was crazy that he could turn me into an addict with complete impunity but if he were to prescribe a milder and less addictive analgesic and suggest I backed it up with a spliff, something that worked just as well, he would be struck off.
    This is the tragedy, we have the science and know how to improve people’s lives but are continually stymied by a self-righteous minority who possess little or no scientific knowledge.

  • Cali Ron

    “From a spiritual standpoint, none of us can sustain the sound minds and healthy bodies God desires us to have when we place ourselves under the controlling influence of something other than the Holy Spirit.”
    Correction: From a human standpoint, none of us can sustain the sound minds and healthy bodies we desire to have when we place ourselves under the controlling influence of religion rather than logic and sound reasoning. There we go, now it makes sense.

  • Robster

    “From a spiritual standpoint, none of us can sustain the sound minds and healthy bodies God desires us to have when we place ourselves under the controlling influence of something other than the Holy Spirit.”Says middle aged bloke who’ll serve alcoholic Jesus bodily fluids, edible deity crackers and other sundry nonsense to the assembled gullible. Talk of controlling influences.