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As we mark the anniversary of the tragic events of September 11, 2001, we again have an opportunity to reflect on the remarkable service, compassion and patriotism of so many Americans. The heroism of first responders who ran in as others ran out. The courage of everyday citizens on United Flight 93 who sacrificed themselves to avert greater carnage. The compassion of tireless workers at ground zero who risked their health to recover remains.
In their example, we can find inspiration to help, not hate; courage to act, not cower; compassion to comfort, not ignore. Join us on this September 11th Day of Service and Remembrance in honoring all those in our movement who have also exhibited the highest level of patriotism. And in considering what we can each do to advance their legacy.
The story of medical cannabis in America is filled with heroes who risked their freedom to advance the cause of compassion. Many sacrificed much. The list of POWs current and former is painfully long. The list of patients who have died under the cloud of being classified a criminal by their government is much, much longer. The list of suffering Americans who might have been helped by medical cannabis but could not access it safely and legally is longer still.
As you reflect on their legacy and what you can do to ensure that their sacrifices will never be in vain, look around your community. What assistance can you give" Is there someone you know with a medical condition for which cannabis may prove to be the most effective medicine, but you have hesitated to speak up about it? Is there a volunteer opportunity that could push forward a local initiative or project? Are there pending bills you have yet to contact your elected representative about to explain why supporting medical cannabis reform is so important?
Have you done all you can to educate yourself on emerging science and changing policy so you can be the most effective spokesperson possible? Are their advocacy tools you can develop more fully with a bit more training? Are the networking opportunities in your community that can be a vehicle for expanding support?
Doing this work requires grappling with risk and with loss, finding the courage to act boldly despite them. This September 11th is the day to pay tribute to those who have by rising up in service. OUr country will be better for it. And so will you.