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Kali McCarthy

December 13th, 2013


Jacqueline Patterson of Kansas City, Missouri, suffers from a severe stutter and  debilitating pain due to cerebral palsy. The only thing that relieves her symptoms? Smoking marijuana.

Unfortunately for Patterson, if she smokes she could lose custody of her four children — it is not legal to smoke medical marijuana where she lives.

In a video about medical marijuana, she said, “I was born with cerebral palsy and a severe stutter – which has got to be one of the most stigmatizing disabilities invented by God. It’s very humiliating. My right side of my body is much noticeably weaker than my left and my right arm is always painfully tense. I went through my entire childhood in pain because I couldn’t move my muscles.”

Patterson claims that smoking marijuana makes her a better mother, since it is the only way she can relieve her crippling symptoms.

She said, “ I smoke to be the mother my children deserve – they are really cool kids. Being a good mother to my children is the most important thing in the world to me. But if I were to get busted buying or smoking marijuana there is a possibility I could lose my children.”

Patterson normally struggles to speak — it takes her several seconds to formulate various sounds in each word. After she has three hits of marijuana, however, she is able to speak perfectly. She claims it takes three hits at least to make her speech normal.

Currently, the mother is doing her part to change the laws in her state. She wrote a letter to the Kansas City Star that said, “I was born with cerebral palsy and discovered early on that cannabis mitigated the most painful physical and emotional manifestations of my disorder. I later learned that cannabis can help stutterers speak more clearly and that decades ago, doctors discovered the herb’s ability to alleviate muscle spasms, from which I also suffer.”

Medical marijuana currently helps thousands of sick people in states where it is legal. Moreover, there is abundant evidence that the drug is far less dangerous than alcohol or cigarettes.

According to NORMAL, a group working to reform marijuana laws, “Around 50,000 people die each year from alcohol poisoning. Similarly, more than 400,000 deaths each year are attributed to tobacco smoking. By comparison, marijuana is nontoxic and cannot cause death by overdose.”

When will marijuana laws reflect reality?

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