Although California has a huge population of residents carrying prescriptions for medical marijuana, the social stigma attached to the drug has led the elderly to be very hesitant about adopting it as a palliative for age-related problems such as loss of appetite, nausea and chronic pain.
Now a luxury retirement community in Orange County, Laguna Woods Village, whose residents have discovered pot's benefits, has made weed easier to obtain by establishing its own pot collective.
The community set up its collective because, although there are thousands of clinics in the state selling marijuana, none were convenient to the residents, some of whom have very limited mobility.
For the greatest generation, taught to believe that marijuana was as addictive and deadly as drugs such as heroin, the reality has come as a pleasant surprise to many. NPR reports on the epiphany of a 73-year-old Leisure World resident and synchronized swimmer who found it effective in countering her nausea.
The fact that the retirees are receiving recommendations to try pot for their ills from their peers leads me to believe that the use of it on the West Coast has reached a critical mass. We could well see demand for legalization, at least for medical reasons, swell among the retiree community across the country.
As a boomer, I expect that when our generation retires, many may choose to pull out the E-Z wides, fire up a blunt, order a pizza, and crank up Dark Side of the Moon once again, and not just for medical reasons.
A national columnist (name escapes me) recently wrote a tongue-in-cheek column in which he offered to voluntarily give up his driver's license on his 80th birthday in return for the right to all the drugs he wants.
Medical or recreational, is there a good reason why those who have worked a lifetime should be denied the opportunity to spend their golden years in a haze if they so choose?
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