Larry Smith Is A Lot Of Things:
- He is a former police officer who served 26 years in uniform before retiring in 1999.
- He is a one of 10 million patients worldwide suffering from the debilitating effects of Parkinson’s disease.
- He is a resident of South Dakota, the state with the strictest penalties for cannabis possession in the country.
- He is the subject of the documentary “Ride With Larry,” an intimate portrait of courage, love, and community.
- He is one the subject of one of the most viral videos currently on Facebook.
The ultra-viral video shows Smith, aided by a fellow Parkinson’s patient and marijuana advocate, trying medical marijuana for the first time. With a few drops of cannabis oil under his tongue, Larry’s severe dyskinesia (uncontrolled movements), loss of voice, and tremors are calmed within in minutes. It’s an astonishing must-see video of how cannabis treats the crippling effects of Parkinson’s.
Related Story: Cannabis And Parkinson’s Disease: What We Know
Smith began feeling the onset of Parkinson’s about 20 years ago, shortly before his retirement. For nearly two decades, Smith tried an assortment of conventional pharmaceutical treatments with no real success. Finally, he gave medical marijuana a try. For Smith, it was truly a last-ditch effort. Since South Dakota is home to some of the most draconian anti-cannabis laws in the nation, he traveled to California for cannabis treatment.
In the video, Smith says:
“These are not the days of Reefer Madness. Yet I and millions of other people can’t have it without facing serious jail time.”
Indeed. His wife, Elizabeth, is more concerned about the escalation of pharmaceuticals than cannabis. “Larry’s at the point where he’s having so much trouble walking, now he takes 20 pills a day,” she said.
And those pills aren’t cheap. Medication costs for an individual person with Parkinson’s disease average $2,500 a year. Therapeutic surgery, another risky option, can cost up to $100,000 dollars per patient. Smith, according to the family, spends $3,000 per year on his pills, slightly above the national average.
Elizabeth supported her husband’s unconventional treatment, despite the legal hurdles.
“I do not like the idea of breaking federal law even though it’s the state law. In California, it’s very clear that it’s permissible. I’m still uncomfortable, but … as far as I know we have tried everything, this is the only thing that’s left. We are going to give it a go and see how it goes.”
As the video demonstrates, it went very well. As the video describes:
“With a few drops of cannabis oil under his tongue, Larry’s severe dyskinesia (uncontrolled movements), loss of voice, and tremors are calmed within in minutes! We didn’t even edit the footage because the results were so startling.”
As the video ends, Larry wryly states:
“A person like me could really use marijuana. And it makes me pretty angry that I can’t get it in my home state.”
Buy the movie “Ride With Larry”