One of the most talked about issues this election season was the legalization of marijuana in Washington State and Colorado.
Its spurred debate across the nation, as both protestors and supporters are speaking out. Here in Iowa, one Iraq veteran is working to dismiss the misconceptions and rumors about cannabis and connect the various support groups in the state to form one alliance.
Logan Edwards of Davenport was injured in Iraq in 2007. After becoming a permanent resident of Iowa, he has become a spokesman of sorts for the legalization of cannabis and the various benefits it could provide to the state.
"This is a new idea, but an old fight," Edwards said of his advocacy group. "There have been people fighting for this in Iowa for a long time."
Edwards' effort is just getting off the ground, but he has already found a lot of support. Some are public, some private, depending on whether their job or reputation could be affected by pledging their support. The biggest obstacle so far is overcoming misconceptions about cannabis, such as using it solely to get high.
Edwards said Iowa is the perfect example of a place where industrial cannabis would be useful. As an agricultural state, legalization and industrial use could create jobs as well as help out local farmers.
Regardless, Edwards said it is time to clear up the hypocrisy within the subject and take a serious look at the issue.
"I think that we need to really just look at it in our American democracy and debate it and let's see if the pros outweigh the cons," he said. "It's probably not going to happen in January, it's probably not going to happen at all this next year, we're facing a lot of opposition, but I think by at least 2016, I would like to see presidential candidates actually debating it in public instead of just completely ignoring the whole thing. I think that's the end goal."