We’ve all seen it before. That video where a cyclist is in the home stretch, sees the finish line, lifts both arms in triumph of a celebration they see as all theirs and then seemingly out of nowhere they get beat –sometimes they fall and get hurt. Why does this happen? Literally because they let off the pedals. We can’t let this happen to Proposition 2.
Yes, I know there’s a “compromise”. Just over a week ago I tried to remind you that the very same people who told you they were against Prop 2, who tried to tar and feather the initiative as an attempt at recreational marijuana, were now asking you to trust that they would actually do something in our legislature. Well I’m here to remind that you still have no reason to trust them, and if you want to see medical cannabis in this state, you, your friends and family will need to loudly blast your approval of the proposal at the ballot box.
Just yesterday The Salt Lake Tribune reported that a new poll conducted by the Hinckley Institute of Politics showed a 15 point drop in support for the measure. This should be a five alarm fire for all of us. It’s time to get up and go, people. The only way this will pass is if we help it. So what can we do besides vote? We need to talk about it in person -not just on social media- at parties, at dinner, at the bar, at the coffee shop, at you college campus and every time we hear someone say they support it follow up with, “Are you registered to vote?”
This issue grabs at all political leanings. Liberals, conservatives, libertarians -it does not matter- each one of these groups values freedom and Prop 2 is all about choice. The artificial restriction that 31 states chose to side step by voting and passing medical cannabis laws is proof of that. Much smarter people with impressive certificates on their walls could argue this as a freedom of speech issue by bending words, locking them into submission, but we don’t have to argue this in court -it’s on the damn ballot.
All of this comes back to us. What are we willing to do to make sure that Prop 2 passes? Because here’s the thing, the opposition lied about what the initiative was all about, the LDS Church inserted itself into the legislature, and so far those against the measure have spent over $650,000 to try and snuff out support. We are 21 days out from Election Day and each passing day is an opportunity to lobby those around us to support the measure.
In July, Prop 2 sat at a 78% approval rating. As of today the opposition has more than doubled so we must double our own efforts to give it all we got up until November 6. A lot of you were itching to get your ballots mailed off and you’ve probably already voted -good job if you have- but now is the time we must pull together and keep the momentum going. How can we help? By volunteering for the Utah Patients Coalition. A conversation with a stranger that you initiate can sometimes be enough to push them past doubt, and into a yes decision.
Let’s not forget, the last time medical cannabis had some semblance of a chance at being worked on by the legislature, it died in a senate committee hearing. We need not waste this opportunity by banking on hope that someone’s bishop OKs a watered down, weak law with punitive restrictions to those asking Utahns for relief. We must act now while there’s still time.
Vote, and then volunteer.