In 1998, Alaskans voted like adults on the issue of medical marijuana use. They passed an initiative allowing people with debilitating illnesses and a doctor's approval to use marijuana to help their conditions, and to shield themselves and up to two caregivers from prosecution. Now the federal government has caught up to that sensible and compassionate decision.
Attorney General Eric Holder has said federal authorities will not prosecute law-abiding medical marijuana users in 14 states that allow the medication, even though federal law still bans all use and possession of the drug.
The feds will continue to target dealers who use medical marijuana laws to mask to high-profit illegal operations.
But the disabled or terminal patient who tokes up to ease pain has nothing to fear from Uncle Sam.
That's the way it should be.
Marijuana is a drug. Dangerous? Yes. A gateway drug to addiction and crime? Sometimes. But it's a drug that has beneficial uses as well.
To read the complete editorial, visit The Anchorage Daily News.