Mississippi Senator pushing to legalize medical marijuana

PASS CHRISTIAN, MS (WLOX) - For the fourth year in a row, Senator Deborah Dawkins of Pass Christian is submitting another proposal in an effort to legalize the use of medical marijuana in Mississippi.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Marijuana is the most commonly abused illicit drug in the United States. On the flip side, experts say when used for medicinal purposes, the often frowned upon substance can be quite useful. That's why Senator Deborah Dawkins is working hard to legalize its medical use in our state.

"I think most people want their doctors to help them make their own decisions. And to me, we're taking something away from the patients and their physicians," Dawkins said.

A number of studies have shown that some attributes of the cannabis plant can relieve pain, control nausea, and help with a long list of other ailments. As of now, 16 states and the District of Columbia have already legalized the use of medical marijuana.

Dawkins wants Mississippi added to that list, especially since a lab at the University of Mississippi is already involved. The lab serves as the federal government's marijuana repository, growing the plant for research facilities across the country.

"It's something that seems very unfair. That we in Mississippi provide this medicine, that's what it is, medicine, for people in other states and not in our very own," Dawkins said.

Copyright 2012 WLOX. All rights reserved.