The Grass is Greener

  The Grass is Greener

Posted by CN Staff on April 28, 2006 at 08:22:00 PT
By John Askew, Daily Correspondent 
Source: Iowa State Daily  

Iowa -- A thick bass line pounds through the dim basement, giving off a vibrant, confusing pulse as smoke curls around the yellowed murals covering the walls. In the corner sits a lanky man armed with a smile and a joint.That man, who goes by the alias Reverend Ray Green, part-time author, artist and activist for all things dope, could be the future of legalized medical marijuana in Iowa.
"In 2004 I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, and from then a lot changed in my life," Green said. "I tried all the painkillers my doctor prescribed me, but they didn't work. So that's when I turned to marijuana to relieve my symptoms, and it worked."That is why Green has become instrumental in the fight to legalize marijuana.Recently, he has been helping plan a rally promoting the free use of medicinal cannabis to coincide with the Global Marijuana March, a worldwide activism march.The march, which started in 1999, began with an estimated 100,000 participants. Those coordinating the event hope for more than 1 million participants this year, including those in Des Moines.In addition to the march, the festivities in Des Moines include a concert headlining local red-eyed soul band Johnny Reeferseed and The High Rollers.The concert takes place at 9:30 p.m. May 6 at The House of Bricks, 525 East Grand Ave. in Des Moines.Several local students also support the cause, forming the ISU chapter of The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws."With NORML we try to be on campus and advocate for the medicinal and recreational use of marijuana," said chapter co-founder Mark Nieman, senior in political science.At noon, supporters will gather at the state capitol to spread their message to lawmakers, as well as to the public.In the past, attendance for the rally has hovered between 40 and 50 people."There has been great turnout and support in the past, but we are always looking for more, which is why there is also a concert planned to help spread the word," Green said. Medicinal cannabis can also be used to ease pain because of glaucoma and asthma.The use of marijuana for medical purposes has skyrocketed in recent years, because of laws passed in cities such as Denver and Ann Arbor, Mich."We want Ames to eventually be like Denver, where a person can carry up to an ounce of marijuana with them and not be prosecuted," Nieman said. Until then, Green said he plans to stay in Iowa, lobbying so that he doesn't have to obtain the drug through illegal methods.FASTTRAK:What: Post-Medical Marijuana Rally PartyWhere: House of BricksWhen: 9:30 p.m. May 6Cost: $6Note: Organizers hope rally gains support for legal marijuana in the state of Iowa.Source: Iowa State Daily (IA Edu)Author: John Askew, Daily CorrespondentPublished: April 28, 2006Copyright: 2006 Iowa State DailyContact: letters iowastatedaily.comWebsite: NORML -- Cannabis Archives

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Comment #6 posted by FoM on April 29, 2006 at 10:04:46 PT
You're welcome. 
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Comment #5 posted by RevRayGreen on April 28, 2006 at 23:44:38 PT:
thank you
all ever so much for carrying on this message and
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Comment #4 posted by b4daylight on April 28, 2006 at 15:50:50 PT
luck RRB
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on April 28, 2006 at 10:30:49 PT

Thank you too for all your hard work.
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Comment #1 posted by paulpeterson on April 28, 2006 at 10:23:09 PT

Piece be with you in Des Moines
Good luck with that rally. I won't be there, however, having no gas money for the trip. There is serious negative sentiment towards any change in the Iowa Legislature, anyway. My local reps will not come out of the closet on this one until there is some serious support throughout the state.I, personally, have a decriminalization and medical marijuana exemption ordinance on file with the BV County Board of Supervisors, awaiting a response from the local prosecutor's office before my people are willing to bring it up on a formal vote. With two supervisors retiring and two others NOT facing the voters this year, I am told we may get some changes made here, on the county level, if only in a symbolic form, perhaps fought tooth and nail by the local police that are certain to be recalcitrant.Today I also spoke with US Senator Chuck Grassley's office to bring them up to speed with my local efforts. They were somewhat supportive, since Grassley has just lambasted the drug czar about the misplaced focus against marijuana, particularly since meth is such a more serious problem.Curiously, Grassley has known personally for 20 years about what marijuana can do for MS, the very condition spoken of in this fine article about a local advocate that I will certainly meet in due course. Grassley was instrumental in helping a local person gain IND approval for MS treatment in 1991. This person is still able to get out of a wheelchair and see partially after all these years using nothing other than the sacred herb.Cracks are surfacing in the wall of prohibition. I think it is almost comical to see just how the FDA has shot themselves in the foot with that general denial of any medical efficacy. That FDA denial has only caused a rash of publicity about the 99 IOM report that has seemed to be totally disregarded for all these years. Now the FDA has given it new publicity that they never could have imagined would come from their own action.Thanks again to Cannabis News for posting this story to help keep our faithful abreast of the changes acoming. PAUL PETERSON, from Northwest Iowa.
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