Pending state legislation offers veterans use of marijuana for PTSD treatment

U.S. Marine Corps 1st Sgt. Arthur Davis spent decades overseas serving his country, sometimes in the most precarious combat situations on earth.

Thirteen years after retirement from the Marines, Davis is on full disability and faces a daily struggle with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD.

“To self-medicate in the military means alcohol and then alcohol becomes too much, so you seek help and then it becomes pills and both of those are very addictive,” Davis said.

Davis, who was in charge of men who did not return from the field of battle in places like Iraq and Afghanistan, said that he had a lot of trouble when he returned home to Houston.

In 2009, he was arrested for aggravated assault, following an incident with a mayor.

He overcame his alcohol and pill addiction, and ultimately had the charge expunged.

Davis said that marijuana is his non-addictive choice to calm him now, and he is not alone in that choice for veterans coping with PTSD. But in Texas, the practice is illegal.

Now a new Texas State House Bill seeks to change that, creating compassionate-use review boards that could include legalized low-dose THC products for veterans with PTSD.

See the text and status of the bill here.

But marijuana-related legislation faces an uphill battle in Texas. Here is why.

“A lot of guys are doing it, but they’re not telling anybody because they’re afraid of the repercussions. They’re afraid of the stigma, but you got ‘big pharma’ giving us these pills like it’s candy,” Davis said.