The writer of the editorial talks about attending a mental health forum sponsored by the newspaper.
...I was frustrated knowing that Florida ranks 49th in per-capita mental health funding. I also got frustrated knowing that a fellow veteran wanting to get off his narcotic pain medication was denied cannabis by the medical board at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center here.
...The Veterans Affairs department allows patients treated at its facilities to use medical marijuana so long as it's legal in the states where they live. I get upset knowing that Federal officials and veterans groups estimate that nearly 31 percent of Vietnam vets and 20 percent of returning service members from Iraq and Afghanistan are dealing with PTSD.
We need to decriminalize the law in Florida for possession of marijuana now. No one should be arrested and sent to jail or prison for personal use of marijuana. The resources saved to our courts, jails, mental hospitals and prisons need to go to diversion programs, treatment and rehabilitation.
If Amendment 2 is passed in November, millions in taxes could be coming into state coffers. Let's make sure these tax dollars come back to our counties. We need to use more money to education our youth about substance abuse, provide access to our health care system for the mentally ill, provide substance abuse treatment and finally to provide food and shelter for our homeless.
YES on Amendment 2
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