Oklahoma has done a pretty damn good job with this whole medical marijuana thing. I mean, come on! The percentage of Okies with OMMA cards is 5% — and getting higher by the day. Another of the hottest MMJ markets in America is Florida, which smokes seeds and stems by comparison: Just 1.9% of Floridians are card-carrying cannabis consumers. Losers.
But let’s not space out and rest on our laurels! With a few tweaks, Oklahoma could be even more progressive and keep this THC tumbleweed rolling hard. Here are six ideas to make sure Oklahoma’s Medical Marijuana program stays best in 2020:
1. Give hospice patients immediate access.
Why subject the dying to an application processing period that could easily have patients receiving OMMA cards after they have shuffled off this mortal coil? Applications are already submitted online. Idea: Flag hospice caregiver apps for immediate approval — then email a temporary card. No hospice patient is getting denied in the Wild West of Weed — especially when a) there are no qualifying conditions to begin with, and b) there’s such clear evidence MJ helps end-of-life care.
2. Permit smokeless usage in 21+ places.
I shouldn’t feel like a criminal taking a hit or five off of my barely-leaves-a-trail vape when I’m in a bar, hiding in the bathroom. Marijuana is arguably safer than alcohol. Isn’t it time we normalized it? We get that turning a bar into a haze of vape fog isn’t ideal, but why can’t nightlife establishments reserve us a dark corner? We don’t care about the aesthetics of the space; just give us somewhere to step aside and medicate!
3. Give us some cannabis lounges.
Cannabis lounges are spots where pot patients can go to indulge in their favorite activity: consuming marijuana. No hiding in the shadows, here! It would be amazing if Oklahoma would take a hint from other states and incorporate this progressive aspect into its medical program. Bouncers check OMMA cards at the door. Easy peasy. These lounges are highly successful in other states and will be positioned to really cash in, when marijuana is federally legal.
4. Allow smokeless medical marijuana use in hospitals.
Cannabis really should be allowed at hospitals in smokeless form. Cannabis can be great for pain. Many people can not take traditional RX pain medicines, myself included. And this past year, in the hospital, I learned what real pain was. A cannabis patch, cream or even a suppository would have been really helpful while I was stuck in the hospital with my insides bursting. It’s medicine. Let medical marijuana patients use their medicine in the hospital. duh.
5. Lower the goddamn green tax.
Yo! How are Oklahoma’s planet-pillaging, billion-dollar oil companies getting a better deal than this particular sector of agriculture? I think it’s time the 7% medical marijuana tax get lowered by 1-2%. Dispensaries are doing their part to keep consumer costs low, with deals, discounts and rewards programs. Throw a dog a bone — or at least a seed. In 2019, Oklahoma collected $54.7 million in green tax revenue. Shouldn’t our great state be well on its way to rolling in coin, Scrooge McDuck style?
6. Let us share with our friends.
Sharing is caring. I’m not a fan of the rule prevents a patient from sharing her own grow with another patient. I’d like that rule to disappear. We are so proud of our little green friends — it’s sort of like baking! When you grow some good shit, you want to share with the neighbors. The first rule you learn in school is to share, and the best gift is a batch of homemade edibles. Note: I am somewhat ambivalent about this, because the ‘no sharing’ rule gives cardholders an easy out, when that one friend who bums — but never buys — hits us up for weed.
Oklahoma’s famously successful medical marijuana program has positioned us to be the go-to Midwest state for cannabis — which will come in real handy, when it becomes federally legal. Be patient, my friendly potheads. Our dank destiny awaits!