Local News

Some in Highlands County support medical marijuana

SEBRING - A ballot proposition to legalize the prescription of marijuana for illness would get the support of Sandi Percival, but with a caveat.

Percival said she wants to be assured that it would not allow for people who don't need marijuana on a medical basis to get it easily, nonetheless.

"I think if it would help an individual (with a medical problem) I would definitely vote for it," said Percival, a seasonal resident who is registered to vote in Highlands County.

Most of the people surveyed in downtown Sebring Thursday and people who posted comments on Highlands Today's Facebook page expressed similar viewpoints. Most said they would vote for medical marijuana, but did not support wholesale legalization of marijuana. The Florida Supreme Court on Monday voted 4-3 to approve the wording of the ballot measure. Proponents already have enough signatures to get it on the ballot.

Only one person interviewed in downtown Sebring voiced complete opposition to medical marijuana, but added that she is not a resident of Florida.

Dave Desaupels, who is a seasonal Frostproof resident, said he supports legalized medical marijuana, while visiting the Sebring downtown area.

"My mother died of cancer," he said. "Something like that would have helped her out a little.

But, he added, that "I think if it's not abused it will help a lot of people."

Roland Kelley said he believes he could benefit from medical marijuana because he has glaucoma.

He would support complete legalization, as long as some restrictions were imposed, such as limiting its use to people 21 and older.

Joaquin Bright said approving medical marijuana would bring in more tax revenue.

Marguerite Pugliese said she would support legalizing marijuana if its for a medical reason, but is concerned about it being abused by young adults.

On Facebook, Karron L. Neale Tdder said that "If it is used for medical reasons, I'm for it. Many people with health issues, such as Parkinson's Disease, glaucoma, cancer and other diseases would be able to benefit from it. It would/could help people from getting addicted to pain medicine, which has become such a problem."

Jonathan McDaniel agreed, saying on Facebook that pain pills caused his mother's death.

Tina Brumwell called it on Facebook a "tremendous step forward. The idea that someone in need of the benefits of marijuana being subject to criminal charges is beyond ridiculous," she said.


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