Following our most recent blog post on the costs of the lawsuit, there has been a great deal of speculation that we are prepared to abandon our fight against SB423. This is not the position of the MTCIA, and we have no plans to give up the fight. Rather, we are simple asking those who have benefited from the lawsuit to contribute to the cost, and nothing more.
The lawsuit against the state of Montana for its attempts to destroy the industry is a fight worth waging. If it had not been for the suit, there would effectively be no providers today, and Montana would be the only medical marijuana state in which the state representatives succeeded in rolling back the will of the people. When the vast majority of patients are either too sick or do not have the resources to grow their own cannabis, the amazingly brave work done by those who continue to help patients demonstrates an extraordinary amount of compassion for those in their care. These people deserve our vocal and visible support, and we will continue to do that which is within our power to provide that support.
Of course, this battle comes at a steep financial price, but the board of the MTCIA truly believes that Jim Goetz was and still is the right choice to help us lead this fight. Mr. Goetz has done work of the highest caliber, and he deserves our continued financial commitment. Simply put, when the fighting gets tough, it is exactly the wrong time to remove one of your best warriors. Everyone currently in operation today should take note of the fact that he personally fought on behalf of our cause and has done what none other has been able to do — turn back the government’s increasing tendency to favor the will of the federal government over the will of the voters who put our elected officials in office.
There is seemingly no shortage of bad news for medical marijuana providers and patients in our state, and the MTCIA is not about to contribute to it. Indeed, these are the times that try men’s souls. The fair weather profit-takers have long gone from what is left of the industry, most likely underground, and even committed and caring providers have found it safer to simply leave the fight. But those who soldier on in this crisis have not shrunk from their service to a cause they know is right. All those who stand with us now deserve the love and thanks from the citizens of Montana. Governmental oppression is not easily beaten. But we have this consolation: That the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. Life as a caregiver in 2009 and 2010 was easy, and what we obtain too cheaply, we value too little.
It is only when the challenges are hard that we understand a thing’s true value. Can we put a price on personal liberty or physical heath? These things are beyond value; truly a priceless things. The federal government, with its armed and well-trained police force has named us its top priority for nothing more than political purposes. In so doing, it has trampled on our state laws, the Montana Constitution, and on the rights secured by the nation’s Bill of Rights. On the state level, our own law enforcement officials have abandoned the state law they are supposed to enforce in favor of taking money from the federal government to prosecute those very citizens they allegedly serve and protect. If this is not tyranny, then tyranny has no meaning in the US. We as Americans have a duty to oppose unjust laws, and the MTCIA stands ready to do just that.