During Saturday’s Georgia Republican Assembly convention David Baker, Executive Director of Faith & Freedom Coalition of Georgia, used his allotted time in a panel discussion entitled “Social Conservatism In Georgia” to press forth the groups positions on medical marijuana reform in Georgia. In a segment that began with the question “How many people here like George Soros?” which was then followed up by the question “So, you wouldn’t want to help him and other left-wing billionaires fund things like he’s done over the past twenty-five years have given millions and millions of dollars to the Marijuana Policy Project, the goal of which is to get marijuana on ballot initiatives in states all across the country in order to legalize it, and this is where the money is coming from.”
Baker went on to quote Richard Cowan of NORML, stating “The key to legalization is medical access”. Baker then went on to add to the statement, stating “so when you hear about medical marijuana, that’s never an end in itself.”
I spoke to Tom McCain, Executive Director of Peachtree NORML, who had this response to the statements.
“Firstly, I’m unsure of what ‘money’ Baker is referring to, he may be paid, but my position is an unpaid volunteer post. Secondly, what Richard Cowan said in 1993 was, ‘The key to it is medical access, because once you have hundreds of thousands of people using marijuana medically under medical supervision, the scam is going to be blown’. Cowan’s statement is an indictment of the DEA classification of marijuana as a Schedule I substance, having a high potential for abuse and no medicinal value. Prior to 1937 and The Marijuana Tax Act, Cannabis, marijuana’s real name, was widely used in the preparation of medicines. The American Medical Association condemned its pending Prohibition in a letter to the Chair of the Ways and Means Committee that enacted the legislation. The AMA letter stated, in part, ‘Since the medicinal use of cannabis has not caused and is not causing addiction, the prevention of the use of the drug for medicinal purposes can accomplish no good end whatsoever. How far it may serve to deprive the public of the benefits of a drug that on further research may prove to be of substantial value, it is impossible to foresee’. Keeping cannabis away from us by prohibiting it was a scam.”
Dave Baker would then bring up Allen Peake to the Republican audience, which drew at first a single clap. Baker would remark “well, we have one enthusiast there” which then led to a few more applauders, then finally, most of the crowd applauding the mention of Allen Peake.
Baker’s segment would close with the statement “We’ve got a giant opioid addiction crisis in this state, and bill after bill after bill from the General Assembly about curbing the abuse of opioids. Opioids are what the DEA call a schedule II drug meaning they’re highly addictive, but they have some medical benefit. We already have this problem with drugs that have been tested and approved. Marijuana is a schedule I drug” at which point a heckler from the audience is heard shouting “You’re way over!” which Baker would reply “Thank you. Which means it is highly addictive and has no medical benefit.”
Jimmy Wages is a local father whose daughter, Sydney Wages suffers from seizures and uses cannabis oils to control her seizures. Wages had this to say after seeing today’s footage. Wages was incredulous at the idea that anything that he’s done for his family has anything to do with George Soros. As for Baker’s reliance on the FDA, Wages points to the Opioid epidemic that Baker himself mentions, “Opioids are an example of where FDA testing can get us.” While Baker is technically correct on scheduling, Wages points out that the Department of Health & Human Services holds a patent, #6630507, for the medical benefits of the same cannabinoids that the DEA claims have “no medicinal value”.
The entire, unedited video is available above. I encourage you to watch this 8-minute video and let me know what you think.