Sure, the ice-bucket challenge is a stunt. But it seems to be raising money ($31.5 million and counting) and awareness for ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease).
But before everyone got all cold and wet, one Florida political group, United For Care, was already making ALS a central issue in its campaign -- to legalize medical marijuana via constitutional amendment. ALS is one of the nine specifically enumerated "debilitating medical conditions" in the amendment's text and one of the campaign's activists, Cathy Jordan, is an ALS patient who says marijuana helps her more than just about any other drug.
So this week, like many in social media, the Miami-based United for Care group took the "challenge" and challenged its campaign chairman, trial lawyer John Morgan, to do the same. The campaign's director, Ben Pollara, said they were taking the challenge on behalf of Jordan.
Coincidentally, police raided Jordan's home just after a bill was named in her honor last year. That bill was promptly ignored, like other medical marijuana legislation, by the Legislature. Lawmakers then somewhat reversed course and legalized low-THC marijuana, which advocates say won't do much to help people with ALS, cancer, AIDS, etc.
Backers of the Legislature's limited, scaled back medical-marijuana law said they weren't passing it to politically undermine the popular amendment (which they tried to block in court). But lo and behold, opponents of medical marijuana now say the amendment isn't needed because the Legislature acted.
Too bad there's no ice bucket challenge to chill the hot air that comes out of Tallahassee.
Anyway, here's the video.