Texas vets call for legal pot to combat war wounds

By Dane Schiller | Houston Chronicle Blog

Texas veterans are to gather at the state capital to demand access to legal marijuana as a safer alternative to prescription medication to combat post traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury and other ailments related to their time in uniform.

Among those who are scheduled to speak at the event, set for Wednesday, are an Army  veteran who served in Operation Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom II, an Air Force veteran who was in the Saigon Airlift in South Vietnam and a retired Army Ranger who served four tours in Iraq and Afghanistan.

As part of what they are calling Operation Trapped, they and their supporters will  gather at the Texas Capitol Vietnam Veterans Monument, near 14th and Brazos at 1 p.m. They plan to display empty pill bottles collected from Texas veterans suffering from medical conditions they say could be relieved by medical marijuana.

“As veterans, we have made many sacrifices to protect and serve our country,” Army veteran David Bass said. “Far too many soldiers come home to endure the debilitating conditions caused by war. These veterans, along with many other patients, are being left out in the cold.”

Dean Becker, an Air Force veteran and contributing expert at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, said leaders across the United States, as well as Houston’s police chief and Harris County’s district attorney, have shown they know it is time for change when it comes to marijuana laws.

Originally published here: http://blog.chron.com/narcoconfidential/2015/11/texas-vets-call-for-legal-pot-to-combat-war-wounds/#photo-707739