Cliff Village, a tiny suburb of Joplin, has become the second Missouri city to legalize marijuana for medical use. Residents can pack their pipes with impunity, so long as their pot comes with a doctor's prescription.Read the rest of the story by clicking here.
But with a population in the double-digits and a local sheriff who vows to lock up any pot smoker he can find, the town's 30-year-old mayor, Joe Blundell, concedes that the move is "symbolism, pure and simple."
"I'd like to go and testify to legislators about this plant," says Blundell, who is wheelchair-bound, the result of a train accident in 2000. "I'd tell them I'm not a criminal, that I'm in a horrific amount of pain and I'd rather take something natural and holistic rather than something being pushed by Pfizer."
A handful of state lawmakers and pro-grass activists hope the actions taken by this southwest Missouri hamlet will help blaze a path for the statewide passage of a long-stymied medical-marijuana law.
"They've really taken the issue by the horns," says Dan Viets, coordinator of the state's chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML). "Perhaps lawmakers will realize that even rural communities have embraced cannabis as a legitimate form of treatment."
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