Why I Introduced a Bill to Legalize Medical Marijuana

I had the distinct pleasure of meeting Hyong Yi, the husband of Catherine Zanga who honored her by handing out 100 love notes in uptown Charlotte on the anniversary of her death. The random act of kindness went viral as people passed along love notes to loved ones using the hashtag #100LoveNotes in social media. His story is incredible and inspired me in more ways than one.

As we sat and talked over a chance meeting at breakfast one day in 2016, Hyong shared with me the pain Catherine had to endure during her battle with ovarian cancer. Given the medical evidence that marijuana causes fewer side effects than some of the very potent and addictive narcotic painkillers, Catherine and her husband would have preferred the option of using marijuana to manage her pain. But, as a former prosecutor and law enforcement attorney, Catherine Zanga recognized and respected the legal consequences of using an illegal substance.

There is extensive research on the benefits of medical marijuana for treatments of cancer, epilepsy, glaucoma, anorexia, AIDS, chronic pain, arthritis, migraines, and the list goes on. More than 28 states have already legalized the use of medical marijuana, and I have introduced Senate Bill 579, The Catherine A. Zanga Medical Marijuana Bill, with the intention of North Carolina being one of the next states to legalize medical marijuana.

Sign the petition to Legalize Medical Marijuana in North Carolina.