Is Medical Marijuana Legalization Coming to Kentucky?

By Anne Holland

Before the Federal Government banned hemp growing, Kentucky was one of the top producing states in the nation – making it the green grass state. Seems that the climate and terrain are perfect for cannabis cultivation. Yesterday, Kentucky State Senator (D) Perry Clark announced he was introducing a bill to make marijuana legal for medical purposes only. This new bill won’t be voted on until the next Kentucky legislative session which starts in January 2013.

Bills of this nature have been voted down in Kentucky before, including one this year, in part because local police leaders have spoken out against them. Senator Clark is hoping that by giving his announcement a six-month runway, it will achieve lift-off this time around. He’s also tied in the image of a beloved, recently deceased public figure — calling his proposed bill the Gatewood Galbraith Medical Marijuana Memorial Act.

Only problem, along with being a hemp activist, friend of Willie Nelson, and well-known lawyer Gatewood Galbraith (pictured here) never had much luck in politics. He ran and lost the Kentucky gubernatorial race a total of five times.

Can the bill succeed? Not without education of both the politicians and the police force. Senator Clark is on record saying, in part, that he thinks people should be free to make medicine from a seed they can plant in the ground. We can think of other seeds you can plant that would make a good argument against that. The local police, in the meantime, have said they can’t imagine how they’d enforce the law because in part it would be too confusing to figure out which cannabis was legal versus not. Other states, such as Colorado, have made good headway in creating systems that clear up such confusion.