Conservative Mormon Family Finds Hope In Marijuana Extract

Jacob Glenn recounts his LDS mother’s efforts to form a powerful “mommy lobby” that successfully pushed the Utah Legislature to legalize a cannabis extract that controls seizures. 

Writes Glenn at The Week:

My 19-year-old sister is adorable. She’s fiercely independent, a little moody, and obsessed with movies. She’s also the reason my mother joined forces with other Utah moms to form a powerful “mommy lobby.” Since late last year, these moms — many of them, like my mother, who had never before been active in politics — have sent letters to their representatives, gathered support from friends and colleagues, and even testified on Capitol Hill. Amelia, you see, has Dravet syndrome, a severe form of epilepsy, and our conservative Mormon family has found hope in the most unlikely of places: cannabis.

Thanks in part to the mommy lobby, the Utah State Legislature recently passed a bill to legalize the administration of Alepsia, a cannabis extract taken as oral droplets. Advocates celebrated earlier this week as Utah Gov. Gary Herbert held a ceremonial public signing of the bill, ensuring the law will go into effect July 1. Alepsia contains ultralow amounts (less than 0.3 percent) of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive element in marijuana, but high amounts of cannabidiol (CBD), a chemical that has demonstrated potential for significant seizure control.