Vince and Michelle Seivert’s teenage daughter is epileptic. From their kitchen table in rural LaGrange, Georgia, they talked to journalist Chris Hopper about the extreme difficulties they face legally obtaining cannabis oil. They say the CBD oil has dramatically reduced their daughter’s seizures. Miranda’s parents described how, before taking cannabis oil, Miranda had 12 to 20 seizures a day. Since she began dosing with medical marijuana, she’s reportedly down to four a month. While Miranda can legally use and possess cannabis oil Georgia, the problem for her parents is getting the oil inside the state of Georgia legally. So, four times a year, they pack their bags and fly to Colorado where the marijuana costs less to buy than their plane tickets to get there. Then, they then have to illegally ship the oil or carry it back with them in their luggage. In other words, Miranda’s parents have to become illegal drug traffickers to get her the effective and safe medicine she needs.
“It should be like going to the pharmacy. We go up the road not very far and get what we need,” Vince Seivert said. “We didn’t plan on becoming drug traffickers, but that’s what we are.”
This is their routine because Georgia’s Governor Deal and state lawmakers are leading the fight against patients being able to buy and produce cannabis oil in Georgia. One marijuana advocacy group is getting down to the bottom of the reasons behind lawmakers concerns. Dr. Robert Morris commissioned the most comprehensive study to date on medical marijuana’s impact on statewide crime. In the 11 states he analyzed, neither homicide, rape, robbery nor theft increased.
“This is pretty substantial evidence for being one study that’s suggesting there’s not going to be an increase in state crime rates,” Morris said.
Last year in Georgia, a look at the months before and after the passage of House Bill one, which legalized possession and use but not cultivation and sale, showed marijuana and drug-related arrests decreased. But, this is a complicated issue with an unpredictable end in sight. Legislation that would legalize the cultivation of medical marijuana is expected to be voted on next week. Miranda’s Parents told reporters that if the bill does not pass, they are planning to move to Colorado for good. So far, supporters of the legislation are delivering 12,000 signatures to Governor Nathan Deal’s doorstep on Tuesday.