I am writing this on behalf of Ken Unger of O’Fallon because “there, but for the grace of God, go I.”
Like Mr. Unger, I am a 100 percent disabled military veteran who uses cannabis for its medicinal qualities in treating constant, severe pain. I live in New York state and every day is lived in fear because New York isn’t one of the 17 states that allow medical cannabis.
Mr. Unger was in the Navy and part of the invasion of Grenada. While helping to offload river patrol boats from his supply ship he was struck by a large crane hook. It was the beginning of his spinal disability and a lifetime of pain. For 13 years his pain was treated with morphine class drugs, but he was not able to function because of the side effects. He found cannabis to be a better, although illegal, alternative. Because his disability payments are minimal the only way he could afford cannabis was to grow his own, and so he learned how. He grew two plants in a locked room in his basement.
On Sept. 9, 2010, police came to his front yard and arrested him in front of his 10-year-old son and his friends and their neighbors. He was a sick man with three major heart attacks and six stents in his heart. Is this how we treat our disabled veterans?
Set Mr. Unger free and let him and his family move to a state where treating illness with one of nature’s safest remedies is not a crime.
Bruce Dunn, Morris, N.Y.