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skipos Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-25-09 01:27 PM
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Legal pot debuts in Midwest
From the Chicago Tribune
As Michigan's medical marijuana law takes full effect next month, sufferers of chronic pain and other ailments cheer while police predict problems

By Tim Jones | Tribune correspondent

(the whole article is interesting, but here is a snippet)

But there are legal holes and inconsistencies in the law that, in many ways, will likely preserve the underground nature of marijuana use. Patients can legally buy marijuana on the street, but sellers can be prosecuted. Although patients can grow their own plants, they cannot legally obtain the seeds to grow them. Medical doctors are not required to participate. And, despite the imprimatur of legality from the state of Michigan, there is nothing in the law to protect medical marijuana patients from being dismissed by their employer for using marijuana.

Ron Stephens lost his job in 2007 after a urine test detected marijuana. Stephens, 50, suffers from depression and a chronic neck disorder that limits his neck, shoulder and arm movements. He's undergone a spinal fusion operation, has lost the use of his right hand and cannot sit for more than 10 or 15 minutes. He spent a decade taking prescribed painkillers, including Vicodin, Percocet, and the synthetic narcotic methadone, which he took for two years.

"Somehow it was OK for me to show up for work with all those drugs in me," said Stephens, who asked that his hometown not be identified. "Marijuana carries such a stigma. It's so ... stupid."
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