Montel Pushes Medical Marijuana

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Tuesday, January 25, 2011 - 3:25pm

Former talk show host lobbies Maryland lawmakers to legalize medical marijuana.

Former talk show host and Baltimore native Montel Williams is urging lawmakers to legalize medical marijuana in Maryland.

The 54-year-old Williams spoke during a news conference in Annapolis on Monday with lawmakers from both parties who support the legislation.

"Marijuana may not work for everyone, but what it has done for me is it's given me my life back," Williams said, his voice wavering as he tearfully spoke about his condition.

Williams said he has been living with neuropathic pain in his lower extremities, face and side for 10 years. Opiates, he said, don't work for him anymore.

Williams was cited recently for possession of drug paraphernalia at General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee after authorities found he had a pipe commonly used for marijuana as he passed through a security checkpoint.

Williams said he paid a fine, and he plans to have an attorney fight the citation in three days.

"I'm, right now, the poster child, and in a lot of places, a lot of people are looking for somebody to make an example of to prove a point," Williams said. "All I'm trying to do is live."

He said marijuana provides the only relief he can find.

"I'll come back to Maryland to help you administer this. I'll help you put together the regulations that you're going to need to put together to stop making the mistakes that other states have made, and I'll help you form a system so patients can get off the battlefield and start living a life like everybody else," Williams said, while tearing up.

The Maryland Senate passed a bill last year to allow physician-approved use of marijuana.

The House didn't pass the measure.
 

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