Let voters decide on recreational pot

This is in response to the March 27 letter (“Pennsylvania should not allow recreational marijuana”) submitted by Dr. John Wells about recreational marijuana.

I could not disagree more with this position. I strongly feel that cannabis should be legalized. I am a clinical mental health counselor and have treated many folks over the years, including specifically for addictions, too.

That being said, I have never treated anyone for addiction to cannabis to date, but I have treated hundreds for alcohol abuse, which is legal, and now the opiates, which are doled out like candy and extremely difficult to get off of.

In fact, many end up in the forensic setting with legal problems. But not cannabis.

I have lived and practiced in a state where it is legal for both recreational and medicinal uses, and it works well.

Further, I have had many clients in private practice over the years who consume cannabis for various ailments, and under the current fascist regime they are deemed criminals. Yet some are lawyers, doctors, nurses and teachers.

So go figure: This can transcend political affiliations and classes of people. There is much research coming out now as to the positive benefits of CBD and THC to treat a host of ailments from other more progressive countries.

Recent polls suggest that the majority of people do support legalization. The listening tours have been overwhelmingly in favor of legalization, too.

I think that it would help to ease the opiate crises, which is caused by doctors prescribing it for pain, and big pharma are also to blame.

This should be put on the ballot, and let the people decide. The rest of the nation will be green with legalized pot, and we should be a leader in this new revolution.

Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and I do respect Wells’ – though I disagree tremendously.

In fact, I think that doctors here in the U.S. do not want cannabis to be legal as many folks will use this for treatment, and the docs will be losing much revenue, as it works much better than pharmaceuticals, with less side effects, too.

My clients have attested to that for many years. And it seems like you are referring to those who support cannabis like a basket of deplorables, as Hillary Clinton would say, and that they are misinformed or uneducated.

I am quite educated and experienced, and I can examine the facts, and cannabis would be very good for Pennsylvania and its people.

I also want to state that I personally do not smoke cannabis, and I do not intend to if it is to be legalized, either, for the record. But let the people decide.

Ryan Philips

Seattle, Wash.

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