Although medical marijuana has been embraced by most of the country (30 states and the District of Columbia have legalized the plant for some degree of medical use), there are still plenty of places that remain behind the eight ball. The state of Texas could fall into that category.
While the state has legalized CBD, the non-psychoactive component of cannabis, strictly for people suffering from intractable epilepsy, other common forms of medicinal cannabis remain illegal.
Most Texans—specifically in the rural-most areas of the state, are fairly uneducated when it comes to the benefits of medical marijuana, but one group is doing everything they can to change that by releasing ads teaching rural Texans about medical marijuana.
Teaching Rural Texans About Medical Marijuana
Foundation for an Informed Texas has begun the process of removing the stigma around cannabis in rural Texas, and they’ve begun teaching rural Texans about medical marijuana through a series of ads.
The first ad features a man wearing a cowboy hat, fixing a tractor. He describes his daily routine, and how cannabis helps him plow through it (no pun intended).
“Medical cannabis isn’t legal for most Texans, and that’s just not right, ” the man in the ad states. “It’s important to understand that it really is a medicine — it’s a plant-based medicine. I like to work outside; I want to hunt; I want to fish; I like to be out on the farm. It truly improved my quality of life.”
The foundation’s executive director Jax Finkle told TPR.org that the ultimate goal is to remove some of the stigma surrounding the plant ahead of the 2019 legislative session. According to Finkle, this simple ad is just the tip of the iceberg.
Finkle hopes that her group’s overall message will resonate with Texans’, despite the lingering negativity in the area.
“So we’re working on an education campaign focused on rural Texas so that we can go to people in rural areas so they can understand what kind of program we have in Texas and then understand what medical cannabis really is,” Finkle said.“We’re currently working on building up to do a media buy through cable, mostly cable and then ultimately when we start doing the town hall meetings, we want to do some banner ads.”
Potential Issues Lie Ahead
Unsurprisingly, not everyone in Texas unequivocally supports the endeavor. Sen. Charles Perry, a Lubbock Republican, told TPR that there will be several roadblocks ahead. He named the state’s budget amongst the largest concerns.
“The budget is going to be the biggest issue, and then you throw in Harvey-affected and impacted areas, especially school districts, we’ve got some real infrastructure issues to at least present and deal with, so I don’t think there’s a lot of room for this particular item,” Perry said.
Still, the fact that simple dialogue has been made, should bode well for the state’s large-scale medical marijuana prospects. The group’s ads should begin airing August 25th.