Medical marijuana would save Kentucky lives

Legalizing medical marijuana could save the lives of veterans in Kentucky, an Alexandria resident writes.(Photo: AP)

A worrisome component of veteran post-traumatic stress disorder with chronic pain is the constant, ever-hovering specter of addiction and suicide among the veteran population. The suicide rate is reported to be as much as 22 a day. That may seem too high an estimate, but a suicide a day is 30 a month, and one a day too much.

Meanwhile, a recent Journal of the American Medical Association report showed a 25 percent drop in opioid overdose deaths in states with medical marijuana laws, and a Cato Institute report from January 2015 cited a 5 percent drop in suicides in states with legal medical marijuana. We would expect to see a similar drop in veteran addiction overdose deaths and suicides should the Kentucky General Assembly pass a medical cannabis law this session.

Veterans have...

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