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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Education-based group advocates for legalization in Texas

Cannabis
Photo by Photo by Casey Dawson
Cannabis

At the intersection of College Avenue and University Drive on Saturday, vehicles were repeatedly honking while Debra Ramon, a native Houstonian who now resides in Summerville, held a sign with a three-word statement — “Honk For Weed.”
Cannabis Open Carry Walks, advertise their position as “Free the Weed In Texas,” advocating for the legalization of medical and recreational cannabis for the state. The group wishes to see action taken as soon as possible by the state government, using the hashtag “#FreeTheWeed2019.”
The organization is predominately based through social media, Facebook in particular, and gathers on street corners across Texas, handing out flyers and holding their signs to educate about legalization.
“I think it should be legalized everywhere, and because I live in Texas, I am fighting for Texas,” Debra Ramon said. “It’s not a harmful drug. I would rather see my kids smoke a joint than drink liquor.”
Jay Ramon, Debra Ramon’s son, is from Houston and organized the gathering in College Station. He said it is time to legalize cannabis and hemp in Texas because of the benefits that the people in the state would see for production of materials such as medical remedies, fuel, clothes and more.
Jay Ramon said Kory Watkins, a libertarian candidate running for Texas Governor against Greg Abbott, is a supporter of the group.
“That’s how we are trying to get the politicians in there that have an open mind, the libertarians and stuff that are open minded,” Jay Ramon said. “We need a change, because what we are doing now obviously isn’t working.”
John O’Brien is a veteran and senior citizen diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. He said the reason he thinks it should be legalized is to help veterans get the treatment they need.
“After visiting multiple Veterans Administration hospitals, clinics for the disabled, and seeing senior citizens lined up in walkers one right after the other so they could pee into a cup to get their medication so they could go home —This affects every single family in the state of Texas,” John O’Brien said.
Kristi O’Brien, who is married to John O’Brien, said she hopes to see change for not only her husband, but for Texans as well.
“I think that would help out so many Texans,” Kristi O’Brien said. “It would be a relief on a lot of symptoms that are not being treated by medical pharmaceutical companies. It’s just so difficult to see people you love go through pain and trials and tribulations of the modern day pharmaceutical companies as well as the health care system.”
Although there is access to legal cannabis in other states, Kristi O’Brien said the reason her family has not moved is mostly due to affordability, but also because their loved ones and lives are rooted in Texas.
“It would make it more of an even ground, definitely,” Kristi O’Brien said in regards to legalizing cannabis. “We’re not in a situation where we can financially move to one of those states. Our family is here; this is where we’re from. You’d have to uproot everything just for something that is natural and should be legalized.”

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