SALT LAKE CITY -- Reaction is pouring in after The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released a legal analysis of the medical marijuana ballot initiative in Utah, and one active member of the LDS Church whose son is terminally ill read the memo and is confused about why the church is holding such a strong stance.
“My faith in God has only grown understanding how cannabis works in our body,” Dave Cromar said.
Through prayer and revelation, Cromar says he was guided to medical marijuana four years ago to help his then 7-year-old son, who suffers from epilepsy.
“It's the first time we found true success and healing in our son,” Cromar said.
So Cromar moved his family from Utah to Colorado to legally get CBD oil for his son. He said he was overwhelmed with support from fellow LDS members as well as his local leaders in Colorado.
“Our stake president in Colorado said, ‘I’m a cancer survivor and I wish I had that option when I was going through all that,’” Cromar said.
When CBD oil was legalized in Utah his family moved back, but he says there’s a stark contrast in how he is treated.
“I was just blown away," he said. "I don't know what the issue is with it specific to Utah."
Friday, the LDS Church released its most detailed argument yet for why Utah should not legalize medical marijuana using the current ballot initiative. The analysis outlined 31 results that the LDS Church said "raises grave concerns."
According the analysis conducted by a law firm in Salt Lake City, those concerns include allowing people to grow their own marijuana, creating significant challenges for law enforcement, allowing dispensaries to give free samples, allowing minors to use medical marijuana, requiring science to be ignored, and concerns that large numbers of Utahns will likely qualify for medical cannabis cards.
Those behind the medical marijuana ballot initiative say they respect opinions of those who disagree but say the initiative, "…ensures that those who need this God-given plant for medicinal purposes can use it without fear of criminal punishment."
But now some LDS Church members like Cromar are left with questions for church leaders.
“I would like to know these statements that you're making, are they coming from revelation or are they just pure opposition to legal issues, or where is this coming from? This isn't doctrine so what is it?” Cromar said.
The ballot initiative appears to have secured enough signatures to be placed on the November ballot, but the Lt. Gov. must officially certify which ballot initiatives were successful by May 15.