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Illinois Committee Approves Medical Marijuana Measure

The Illinois House of Human Services Committee approved a measure to legalize the use of medical marijuana on Wednesday. The bill's sponsor, Lou Lang (D-Skokie) told Patch the measure would be the strictest in the nation

The Illinois House of Human Services Committee approved a measure to legalize the use of medical marijuana on Wednesday, the Huffington Post reports. The final vote came in at 11-4.

The measure now moves to the Illinois House for deliberation.

House member Lou Lang (D-Skokie) has been pushing the legalization of medical marijuana for years.

Whenever asked about the possibility of Illinois becoming the nineteenth state to legalize the green leafy substance, Lang is always optimistic.

"Nobody should fear the bill," Lang told Skokie Patch. "This is about quality of life for people.

While the House of Human Services approved the measure, nothing is set in stone.

As the State Journal-Register notes, similar legislation failed in the General Assembly over the years — including the most recent lame-duck session in January,” the Huffington Post reported.

However, other states have recently passed similar bills and Lang is hoping Illinois can become the next state to ride the green wave and help those who can seriously benefit from the drug. Recently, Massachusetts and the District of Columbia now allow the use of marijuana for medical purposes. Meanwhile, Colorado and Washington have taken it to another level, allowing citizens to smoke pot recreationally.

But for Lang the legalization of medical marijuana isn't about recreation use - it's about helping people who can benefit tremendously from the drug, he said.

"Illinois would be the nineteenth state to pass the bill (the District of Columbia also recently passed the bill)," Lang said. "And of all of those, Illinois will be the most tightly regulated."    

The bill, known as HB 1, can be read here.

Tony Pedretti March 11, 2013 at 01:05 AM
How sad its taken us this long to approve use of a substance that is more valuable than most of what the pharmaceutical industry is producing today.
Jim Court March 11, 2013 at 02:26 PM
While I believe our country might rightfully address the myriad of addictions and the negatives that are often associated with them, the "War on Drugs" has been an absolute failure. Many citizens have been tainted by the enforcement of marijuana laws. I am always amazed that by far and away, the two drugs that have the greatest negative impact on us and our society, alcohol and cigarettes are legal (which they unfortunately should be) It is only through education, treatment, and social pressure that we can modify such use. Taxes for these items should go into a fund that serves health consequences, education, and treatment. Other than inappropriate behaviors that these addictions cause, it needs to be removed from the legal system and handed over to the appropriate and useful educators, treatment, and medical providers. Attorney,s , police, the criminal justice system will frown. They should, it provides many benefits to them. It really doesn't solve the problem though.
Ron Burgandy March 12, 2013 at 02:38 AM
I say make it legal, sell business licenses and tax the heck out of it. People are buying it anyway...
Stewart Levine May 15, 2013 at 11:13 AM
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