Conservatives are convulsing at the news today that the Country Women’s Association will lobby governments to trial the medicinal use of marijuana.

Incoming CWA president Leslie Young, a trained nurse and member of the Tasmanian branch from where the motion is understood to have originated, told The Australian that members wanted “all the options” in their healthcare. “Cannabis is another option for people who are terminally and chronically ill,” Young said. “We’d just like them to do the trials and find out.”

The Australian says the decision “may send ripples of concerns” through the Coalition parties.

Yet Young points out that “the CWA was originally set up to look after the issues of its members”. And think who they are. The population of country Australia is ageing and thinning – yet there’s still a lot of work to be done. Pain management will help CWA members and their friends and loved ones get on with the task at hand.

Look at Barnyard’s reaction: “If it was virtually anyone else I’d say ‘no way’, but I’ve always respected them for having their heads screwed on. So if they came out and said something, you’d have to have a look at it.”

Think of this as a Nixon-in-China moment, rather than an opportunity for gags about stoners scoffing all the CWA ladies’ cakes and scones when they get the munchies.

Peter Fray

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