Medical marijuana debate gets backing of Tampa attorney - WFLA News Channel 8

Medical marijuana debate gets backing of Tampa attorney

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HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, FL (WFLA) -

Tampa attorney John Morgan is a constant presence on TV ads in the Tampa Bay market.

His face is also on billboards and on internet ads for his law firm all over the state of Florida.

In the last few months, he's also been spending his own money to advocate for the use of medical marijuana.

Related Story: Florida's medical marijuana battle

"This is a matter of compassion and mercy. This is for people who have really, really bad injuries, really bad diseases and many are terminal.", said Morgan

Morgan says he became aware of the benefits of medical marijuana when his father suffered from esophageal cancer.

"His life ended, but the quality of life at the end was one of peace and mercy and so I saw it there."

Then Morgan became aware of the case of Kathy Jordan.

Jordan suffers from Lou Gehrig's disease and believes marijuana is keeping her alive.

Morgan says a medical marijuana law in Florida would help people like Kathy Jordan.

Related Story: Parrish couple files suit to legally grow marijuana

Tammy Strickling, Executive Director of the Suncoast Rehabilitation Center,  believes it would be a mistake to legalize the drug.
"About 85 to 90 percent of our clients either started with marijuana or are using marijuana in addition to whatever their drug of choice is,"

Strickling believes marijuana is a "gateway drug" to other drugs.

"It is absolutely physically and mentally addictive and THC stores in the body and actually negatively affects brain function, long term memory"

Attorney John Morgan thinks she's wrong.

" These people who say it's a gateway drug, it's smoke screen, it's a red herring, it's a way to scare people and I think that Florida is too smart to be scared.," said Morgan.

Morgan says he's going to continue to fight for a law that allows the use of medical marijuana because he's convinced it can help.

Related Content: VIDEO: Florida's medical marijuana battle

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