PHOENIX (KSAZ) - A meeting is scheduled this Saturday for senior citizens to educate them on all things medical marijuana, and it also will feature Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio as a guest speaker. Arpaio wanted to make it clear, that even though he is speaking at a meeting about medical marijuana, he will never surrender and support legalizing recreational marijuana.
"If this is one thing that really will help them, the medical part of it, and is done legitimately, no diversion, I don't know, what's the difference going to the drug store and getting a prescription," said Sheriff Arpaio.
Arpaio will speak this Saturday at a meeting in Sun City in support of medical marijuana. Mom Force AZ is hosting the meeting free to seniors and says the hope is to educate seniors about medical marijuana, things like how to get a card and the benefits of using it.
In November of 2010, Arizona became the 14th state to adopt a medical marijuana law when voters passed the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act.
The Arizona Department of Health Services says as of August 2015 there were 84,000 active cardholders. The majority of those being males in the age range of 51-60-years-old.
"I feel that if veterans, senior citizens, and other people that are sick that need help, especially to stay alive, maybe we should look at that," said Arpaio.
Arpaio says he has spent 50 years fighting drug trafficking around the world and isn't about to support legalizing recreational marijuana. He says it will just be another drug to worry about, and by making it legal more people might be turned on to the drug.
"A lot of people want to use marijuana, but it's against the law so they aren't going to do it, so it is a deterrent in that sense, when you have a law against it, but if you legalize it, you're going to have big problems," he said.
Arpaio says currently no inmates are being prescribed medical marijuana for treatment of any kind. A measure to legalize recreational marijuana could be on the November ballot if 150,000 signatures were collected by June. So far organizers have obtained 85,000 signatures.