Texans plea for medical marijuana to help their children and loved ones
Moments of tears, pleading, desperation, and stories of perseverance marked six hours of testimony in support of medical marijuana in Texas. Over 70 came forward to testify, and no one spoke in opposition.
Those testimonies at the Texas House Public Health Committee hearing in April were each on record, recorded by video which is destined for state archives and rarely seen again.
One Texas resident, 63-year-old Arthur Mayer, decided that it was important these testimonies be published and distributed, saying they “are too compelling to be lost in a government archive.”
That’s why he has been taking the footage and converting it into YouTube videos.
“So far I have recorded about 28 individual 3 to 7 minute segments of those 60 plus who testified at the Public Health Committee hearing on HB 3785 and HB 837,” Mayer stated. “I have committed to recording and uploading to YouTube all of them and then sharing one every day on 22 Facebook cannabis discussion groups for members to listen to and share with their friends.”
The objective, Mayer says, is to “give everyone in Texas and the world an opportunity to hear these compelling, powerful, truthful, and life changing testimonies.” He says they should not be forgotten.
HB 3785 would have established a whole plant medical marijuana program in Texas for patients with an array of medical issues, including those with cancer, epilepsy, severe pain, among many others. HB 837 would have provided an affirmative defense to patients in court who have a doctor’s recommendation for medical marijuana.
Rep. Myra Crownover, a Republican from Denton, chaired the committee and refused to allow a vote on both of the bills, and went so far as to shut down the phones in her office so that supporters could not reach her to ask that the bill be voted on.
A fixture in the Texas cannabis movement who attends and records events all over the state, Mayer plans to do the same for testimonies in the Criminal Jurisprudence Committee where bills were considered which would have decreased penalties for possession of marijuana, and one which would have legalized the plant.
What effect will these videos have on people who watch them? Mayer believes it will encourage others.
“I believe that truth always precedes action. The effect it had on me is that I cried for these people’s pleas for help. I do not cry often. My hope is that others will be moved in a similar way. Every one of these testimonies are filled with a powerful force that sweeps away the lies of prohibition. You cannot listen and not be moved. I believe it will move people to action.”
Mayer says people’s lives are at stake, and figures 2016 to be a big political year where candidates come out in support of medical marijuana.
Each session the number of testimonies grow, despite the long hours, late nights, and costly trips.
“The importance of testifying is that you leave a public record,” Mayer states. “The politicians may not care. I believe in the innate goodness of the common man. The most important thing to remember is when you testify you’re speaking not only to these politicians, but the whole of Texas and the world. The importance is incalculable, as is its effect on history.”
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