John Oliver’s main story Sunday night on Last Week Tonight was about marijuana legalization. While 44 states have some form of medical marijuana law, the federal government still has it as classified as a schedule-one narcotic. Oliver pointed out how ridiculous this is, saying, “Marijuana isn’t schedule one any more than a hedgehog is an apex predator.”
Due to the federal laws, veterans who want to use medical marijuana to help with their PTSD have a very difficult time getting it. Oliver showed the example of Danny Belcher, a Vietnam vet who explained how marijuana helps him sleep after having nightmares, and what he’s able to accomplish if he smokes marijuana after having the nightmare. While speaking to the Kentucky legislature in 2014, Danny said, “If that nightmare gets so bad I can’t wake up and realize it’s just a nightmare, I will light that pipe up, I’ll be a criminal, I’ll go back to sleep. The next morning, I will get up at 6 o’clock like I always do, my four days a week, I go to the gym. I run. I help other veterans. I couldn’t do that if I was on the damn drugs the VA had me on.” Oliver then added, “So for all the talk you hear of marijuana being a ‘gateway drug,’ in his case, the gateway led to peaceful sleep, rigorous exercise, and community service.”
Last Week Tonight With John Oliver airs Sundays at 11 p.m. on HBO.
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