Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr has a perspective on cannabis to which we all should subscribe: open-minded, supportive, and adverse to stigma (just the way Kerr coaches). Though Kerr himself has used marijuana medicinally and did not find it effective for his own pain, he is still able to identify that a) cannabis is medicinally useful for others, b) there is an unfair stigma attached to cannabis and c) there is a widespread problem of prescription narcotics being casually prescribed.
We should all be as open-minded as Kerr. Just because marijuana isn’t medicinally useful for you does not mean it isn’t useful in some form for someone else, and if you were in that someone else’s shoes, you would not want your medicine to be prohibited or inaccessible, nor would you want there to be stigma attached to it.
Given that eight out of nine states chose to legalize in some capacity this November, and given that polls show the majority of Americans support cannabis legalization, Kerr is also correct to note that attitudes surrounding pot are changing.
We need to continue working to change attitudes surrounding cannabis until legalization is in place for the entire country, and until pot is considered as legitimate (or more legitimate) medicine than the consistently over-prescribed prescription drugs.
One of our lawyers from our Seattle office is in Spain meeting right now meeting with our lead Spain cannabis attorney and learning how much of a stigma there still is in Spain against Cannabis users, who many there view as “drug addicts.” Most in the United States are past that, but we still need to work on removing the stigma.