As I stood in the Capitol rotunda this week waiting to speak to one of the sheriffs in town for Sheriffs’ Day, a nicely dressed woman in her late thirties asked me for directions to registration. Registration? As a lobbyist? “Yes, she replied. I want to lobby for marijuana.” My confusion was then resolved: she was a citizen at the Capitol to petition her Legislature to make marijuana legal in Texas, a prospect not likely to happen, as noted in today’s The Dallas Morning News.
Nearly 300 marijuana enthusiasts made their way to the Texas Capitol on Wednesday to persuade tough-on-crime Republicans to loosen their stance on the drug.
They were sober and dressed to impress. And though lawmakers may give their proposal some consideration, their hopes are likely to go up in smoke.
Fully legalized recreational marijuana as in Alaska, Colorado, Oregon and Washington is not likely to happen. But there is a slim change bills will move forward for medical marijuana, not the kind that is smoked but in an extract where the key ingredient, Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, is available for a variety of conditions, from controlling epileptic seizers to easing the suffering of chemotherapy. The poster child for the medical marijuana movement is Alexis Bortell, who has epilepsy, as reported on by The Fort Worth Star-Telegram and WFAA television.
Alexis Bortell’s story has attracted attention across Texas.
“Medical cannabis will help me,” the 9-year-old told WFAA.com. “It’s illegal in Texas, and we’re trying to change that.”
Two Republican lawmakers, including Rep. Stephanie Klick of Fort Worth, recently introduced legislation to legalize medical marijuana — not the kind you smoke, but rather cannabis oil. But it won’t be legal anytime soon.
In the meantime, Alexis’ family has decided to move to Colorado, where it is legal.