Connecticut became the 17th state to make medical marijuana legal on Friday, but before New Yorkers with headaches and back pain jump on the first Metro North see a doctor, you should know: This is a far less forgiving law that in other states. As Reuters' Mary Ellen Clark reports, You actually do have to be sick to get a pot prescription, and only pharmacists can get licenses to open dispensaries, unlike in some other states we could name.
According to the Marijuana Policy Project, "HB 5389’s qualifying medical conditions are cancer, glaucoma, HIV, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries causing spasticity, epilepsy, wasting, Crohn’s disease, and PTSD." Those are all considerably more serious than the insomnia people claim in California. And as Reuters points out, both patients and caregivers will be required to register with the state's Department of Consumer Protection, so they're keeping tabs. (Don't let that make you paranoid.) But while the new law provides no license to party, it does provide relief to people who suffer from those conditions covered by it, so that's good.