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A Town Hall Meeting With Rep. Mike Callton In Hastings.


Medcnman
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It was a packed house last night at the Commission on Aging in Hastings, MI. State Representative Mike Collart, Honorable Judge Amy McDowell and MACC member Ken Byer fielded questions from a standing room only audience. Rep. Callton is the co-sponsor of 4 of the new bills that would make being a patient or caregiver even more difficult than it already is. It seemed that Mr. Callton had his mind set on these new bills and felt that they were good for the MM community. I would like to think that after the meeting, his views have changed a little. With more than 250 patients staring him down, I think we may have changed his mind a bit. Judge McDowell seemed to be able to read and interpret the current law as it is written. She was a huge benefit to the panel. These proposed bills would all but kill our current legislature. The common theme of the night seemed to be clarity. How should the current law be interpreted. The general concensus of the room was "leave it alone!!!' This is a fight that we all need to engage in. One of my questions to the panel was "how does a patient that has either no caregiver, a bad caregiver or cant grow for themselves, safely obtain meds?". The response was "Dispensaries". I asked Rep. Callton "with your current proposal 4850, any and all transfers other than transfers between a caregiver and their immediate patients, would be illegal. If these transfers become illegal, it would then also be illegal for a dispensary to transfer to patients if they are not their immediate patients." Mr Calltons eyebrows kinda lifted. I got his attention! After the meeting, Mr. Callton came up to me and asked me for a second of my time. We stepped off to the side and I explained to him how these bills would essentially deteriorate the possibility for safe access for any and all patients. I explained to him that by requiring a patient to only receive meds from their immediate caregivers would be bad for patients. I informed him about the hundreds of patients that I hear from that say they cant find a good caregiver or they have a caregiver that has had failed crops or they have themselves had failed crops. I also explained to him the cost difference between getting their meds from a caregiver as opposed to a dispensary and the difference in the cost involved. Dispensaries have alot of overhead to cover. rent, electric, heat employees, etc. A caregiver has less over head which allows for less cost to the patient. He asked me to set up a meeting with my local rep and that he wopuld like to attend that meeting also. Keep those emails flowing folks!! They seem to have only heard one side of our story. Then Dispensary side. I am not opposed to dispensaries but I want the patients to have the freedom to choose where they want to get their meds. We need to continue to flood our reps with emails and phone calls and let them know that there is two sides to this issue!! I look forward to our next meeting and I will report on its content. Thank you all!! Medcnman.gallery_28322_1043_365763.jpg

Edited by Medcnman
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Nice work.

Maybe we can turn the tide, before it's too late.

Myself and many others are doing our best to make sure our legislators see BOTH sides of the story. It is apparent that they have been ill informed by a group looking to line their pockets! I will be contacting Cindy Denby (district 47) to see if she would be willing to meet with myself and others for a face to face meeting. Mr Collart mentioned to me last night that he would also like to attend. Maybe I can even get her to come to a town hall atmosphere and field some questions as Mr. Collart gratiously did last night. These reps need to see our faces and know what we want from them so that when they lay down at night, our concerns echo in their minds. I really think we made a difference last night and I hope to make a difference with every rep throughout the state. Thank you for your support! Medcnman.

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One Mind at a time. we just need to do it in 3 weeks. Great info Medman. Thank you for your work.... Hoping we get something setup like this closer to me.

The word last night is that we have untill the end of February. Its only an additional week so we have to kick it into high gear!! Thanks! Medcnman

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In person meetings are the key!

 

It is easy to ignore or just put off onto an assistant a letter or email. Just can't do that with a real person standing in front of you. Everyone that is physically able needs to set up meetings with their reps and senators. They need to meet a "real" patient as opposed to the stereotype that BS has created.

 

Also, check out Medcnman's appearance ( I am guessing that is him with the rep in the pic). I know that it is wrong, but they respond better if you are dressed better.

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Folks, I was not the only one there last night. I want to thank Iceman081 for the invite and Mr. Blueberry was standing right there with us. It was an awesome sight! They seemed to have "missed" Blueberrys questions that he wanted answered. I would have loved to have heard them and then the responses! The standing room only attendance really caught some attention. I didnt hear one question from someone that was opposed to medical marijuana. I have provided Mrs. Denbys office (district 47) with the information they requested from me, so I'm hoping to have a meeting with her soon. Her assistant informed me in a voice mail she left, that she had read some of my posts here on this site. She googled my e-mail address and it brought her to the 3MA site. I hope she reads all my posts. She will be able to see what myself and other caregivers and patients are going thru to try and stay legal in the eyes and interpretations of our LEOs. Keep up the good work folks! They are getting a glimpse of who we are and what we are asking for. We are sick, in chronic pain, cancerous compassionate peaceful people that only want what we voted for. With proper implementation of the current laws, it would save our state alot of money and allow our courts more time for real problems such as pedophiles, murderers and crack dealers. Thank you, Medcnman.

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Folks, I was not the only one there last night. I want to thank Iceman081 for the invite and Mr. Blueberry was standing right there with us. It was an awesome sight! They seemed to have "missed" Blueberrys questions that he wanted answered. I would have loved to have heard them and then the responses! The standing room only attendance really caught some attention. I didnt hear one question from someone that was opposed to medical marijuana. I have provided Mrs. Denbys office (district 47) with the information they requested from me, so I'm hoping to have a meeting with her soon. Her assistant informed me in a voice mail she left, that she had read some of my posts here on this site. She googled my e-mail address and it brought her to the 3MA site. I hope she reads all my posts. She will be able to see what myself and other caregivers and patients are going thru to try and stay legal in the eyes and interpretations of our LEOs. Keep up the good work folks! They are getting a glimpse of who we are and what we are asking for. We are sick, in chronic pain, cancerous compassionate peaceful people that only want what we voted for. With proper implementation of the current laws, it would save our state alot of money and allow our courts more time for real problems such as pedophiles, murderers and crack dealers. Thank you, Medcnman.

 

'Medcnman' Thank you, I now feel that there is hope. Also thank you for letting us know what is going on and what we can do. I have been sending the emails from email-o-mattic and now you have inspired my to get on the phone to our legislators. I will also be collecting signatures for the repeal of these arcane laws.

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I am so proud of you folks. You showed them what your made of. They are going to be having these all over the state. Pack the house everytime. We are turning the tide. Don't let up. Tighten up. We can and will save this law. thanks, Bb

 

Can someone keep us posted as to when and where these meetings are being held?

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Good going Medcnman, it is efforts such as this that will make the reps see that schuette is feeding them a bunch of fanatical bull scheete. They are starting to see the real picture now, and that will make the super majorities hard to get. Unfortunately we have to endure 3 more years of schutte shoveling them the scheete. It is going to be a continuous struggle to get the real facts to the legislators and get them to open their minds to the reality of the situation.

I see many people on this site spreading the word and doing their part. I appreciate all the efforts being made by everyone, as this is no small endeavor. The time spent writing letters, making calls and meeting the lawmakers in person is not being wasted. The war is not won, but we are gaining ground. I am hearing from reliable sources that the legislators (some of them) are taking our campaign seriously, and if we keep it up we will save our law.

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Good going Medcnman, it is efforts such as this that will make the reps see that schuette is feeding them a bunch of fanatical bull scheete. They are starting to see the real picture now, and that will make the super majorities hard to get. Unfortunately we have to endure 3 more years of schutte shoveling them the scheete. It is going to be a continuous struggle to get the real facts to the legislators and get them to open their minds to the reality of the situation.

I see many people on this site spreading the word and doing their part. I appreciate all the efforts being made by everyone, as this is no small endeavor. The time spent writing letters, making calls and meeting the lawmakers in person is not being wasted. The war is not won, but we are gaining ground. I am hearing from reliable sources that the legislators (some of them) are taking our campaign seriously, and if we keep it up we will save our law.

If we can get our local reps to see that BS is full of BS right now, it wont matter what his next 3 years will be like. He wont have the support he needs to continue his tyranous campaign against patients. All we need is for our reps to meet us. To see that we are peaceful compassionate people that choose a natural medicine. And there is just no reason to tighten laws on people that were never really breaking them in the first place. All we want is what we voted for. Thanks Mike! Medcnman

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Callton, Callton, hmmm, where did I encounter him before? Then I remembered that he had authored a piece for the Lansing State Journal on Medical MJ in early September of 2011.

 

All seemed to go well in the meeting you all had with him but I am still suspicious of a lot of politicians. They are masters at avoiding conflict and enlisting support. They obviously cannot please everyone so in many settings they make vague statements that you could interpret as agreement but it may be interpreted otherwise too. I really hope you have begun to change his mind but I am not sure that you are working against a lack of education on many issues.

 

 

 

 

 

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LSJ Callton Opinion

 

 

Medical Marijuana: Party Drug or Real Medicine by Rep Mike Callton

 

In a past column, I wrote of the various interest groups that have been lobbying me since I took office. One of the interest groups to approach me is a medical marijuana advocacy organization.

 

The use of medical marijuana is an issue that has been heavily debated since the electorate of Michigan voted to legalize it in November 2008. From medical marijuana patients to local law enforcement officers, everyone has an opinion - and many people just want to know the standards and rules that apply to this new law.

 

I won't argue that this needs to be addressed by state and local officials. I am currently working with my colleagues in the House to clarify the medical marijuana laws, eliminating confusion to ensure only those truly in need of medical marijuana have access to it. Clarifying this law is a matter of public safety and it is important that we look carefully at how it is being implemented.

 

In the meantime, I'd like to bring up a different viewpoint, one that hasn't been discussed. My thought is this: if medical marijuana wants to be thought of as a serious drug, it needs to act like one. I have a patient who showed me a medical marijuana candy sucker. She bought it - legally and with a prescription - for $5. Whenever she starts feeling back pain, she just sucks on the sucker for a while. She told me that at the place where she purchased the sucker, you can also buy medical marijuana Rice Krispies Treats and brownies.

 

Of growing popularity in Michigan is a social outing known as the medical marijuana bar. People get together and smoke or otherwise legally consume their medicine, and then leave the group and drive home. This is not only dangerous and reckless, but does little to improve the image of medical marijuana as an actual medicine. I don't know of anyone who gathers in groups to down their Lipitor, or makes popping their antibiotics a can't-miss social event. I am the sponsor of a bill in the Legislature that would make medical marijuana bars illegal.

 

The opinion I shared with the medical marijuana lobbyist is simple. As a health care provider, I took an oath to help relieve the suffering of people. If medical marijuana is a drug that helps cancer patients regain their appetite, comforts patients with glaucoma, or alleviates the suffering for someone with chronic debilitating pain, I'm fine with that. But it's time for medical marijuana to decide if it wants to be taken seriously as a medicine, or if it still wants to be the life of the party. If you want to promote a drug that helps people in need, you need to earn some level of respect for that drug.

 

If medical marijuana is a medicine, not just a street drug, there should be a dosage prescribed, like with all other drugs. The potency should be measured for safety. The process for manufacturing marijuana should be uniform, and there should be case studies performed to determine all the medical conditions it can improve. Best medical practices should be defined, as they exist for all other prescription medications.

 

Let's raise the bar for medical marijuana, and treat it like a real medicine, if in fact it wants to be one.

 

Mike Callton is the State Representative for the 87th House District. He can be reached at (517) 373-0842 or mikecallton@house.mi.gov

 

 

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I posted a couple of comments.

 

 

Consider this analogy. Most would agree that there are many who abuse vicodin for the high effect. They are not using it to relieve pain. They are abusing vicodin and it is a major drug problem in our society.

 

To combat that abuse, do we demand that the legitimate users of vicodin stop the vicodin abusers? Of course not. These legitimate users have precious little control over the abusers.

 

Do we attempt to cut off the supply of vicodin to everyone because of the abuse? Of course not. We realize that legitimate users rely on their medicine and to simply cut it off would be cruel.

 

We determine how and why the vicodin abusers are able to obtain the drug and we try to shut off that supply route. It is the responsibility of law enforcement to crackdown on those issuing medical marijuana cards to the abusers. If law enforcement fails to do that, then it should be clear that they are manufacturing this problem.

 

Hmm, I wonder why they would do that. Might it be an attempt to influence public opinion so that the largely uninformed masses will agree that the legislators must save us all from this law?

 

The legitimate users of this medicine are not at fault for the abuse of others and should not be punished for the failure of Schuette and law enforcement to target the real problem.

 

 

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Sorry, I forgot to mention Mr Callton that you could benefit from talking a bit more to legitimate patients to determine their perspective. Most of the proposed legislation that I've read comes at the issue from a law enforcement point of view and seeks to prosecute rather than to protect.. There is a crying need for legislators to step forward to help the legitimate patients.

 

Many have used marijuana for its pain relieving properties for years. Unlike most prescription medications, there are really no serious consequences to experimenting with the dosage to find the effective amount for your ailment. Taking too much can result in sleep - no further negative effects. So, it is very easy for a regular user to determine how much to take to find relief. For the first time user, there could probably be some recommendations to help them get started, but otherwise patients don't need dosing information. They can easily determine that themselves without risking their health.

 

Also, the studies you describe cost money and the pharmaceutical companies that typically sponsor such studies will only spend money on something they can patent and profit from. It is somewhat disingenuous to claim these studies should be done before sanctioning medical marijuana when you likely know that they will not be done without the profit motive.

 

Most in the medical community claim that smoking this medicine delivers enough negatives to the body to outweigh any positives. I disagree with that but here you have someone ingesting this medicine without smoking and you are still dissatisfied. The sucker allows a person to ingest and to limit their intake to an effective dosage. Please try to look past the color of the sucker and consider this as a way to deliver the medicine without the negatives of smoking.

 

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Representative Callton,

 

Patients are very worried that all of these new legislative changes will undermine the intent of the law – to provide affordable access to this medicine for the sick and suffering. We do not have much of a voice in the lawmaking bodies because most patients are sick or disabled and so have very little money for activism or lobbyists to further our cause.

 

Many of the patients that I speak with are afraid that our legislature – you – are aiming to take away the right of patients to grow medicine in favor of the marijuana business interests and a dispensary model. There is a strong belief that legislators such as yourself want to make the current law unworkable so that you can step in and ‘save the day’ for patients by granting permits to large scale, state sanctioned, growers and dispensaries. That is not what the patients want or need.

 

Also, there is already a law that prohibits driving a car if one is ‘impaired’. Why is it necessary to create a new law to prohibit patients from gathering in a social support group simply because some one may use poor judgement, overmedicate, and then drive?

 

Simply ingesting some medicine does not mean that one is automatically then too impaired to drive. If our society can find a way to let users of every other over-the-counter and prescription medication drive as long as they aren’t impaired and allows users of alcohol to drive as long as they are not impaired, certainly users of medical marijuana should be allowed to drive as long as they aren’t impaired.

 

These patients just want to be left alone to use a doctor recommended medicine that allows them a better quality of life than they have been able to find using pharmaceutical medications. Please listen to the patients and not the lobbyists on these issues. Thank you.

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instead of bombarding the meetings......how about the 3ma rent a hall.... and Send out invites to the Reps...why should we attend to them..... make them get up off they asses and tend a Meeting 3Ma sets up strictly for the reps of MI? the "MMARM" Michigan Marijuana Association Representative Meeting Send out email invites ,Snail Mail invites Etc Hold it the day before the final Say Maybe This Would change the Minds? Just a Thought and maybe get fox Detroit to Jump in to Video tape it if possible.

Edited by TheBeagle
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It would need to be scheduled months ahead of time I am afraid. It looks like the reps are pretty busy folks.

 

Maybe a 'drop in and learn' thing where we rent a hotel hospitality room in Lansing for a full week and tell the reps and sens they can drop in any time (9am to 9pm) ...put out a schedule of 'classes' and have the room staffed with about 4 or 5 of us at all times to greet walk-ins, get them a beverage, and answer any questions.

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