Following an car accident in 1973 that caused a brain trauma and resulted in becoming epileptic, she having tried many ways to treat herself, she started growing #Cannabis for personal use and she began using it as an adjunct medicine. This treatment replaced a rigorous pharmaceutical regimen. With deliberate application and mindful monitoring, marijuana was to eventually become the medicine that has continued to control her seizure activity.
She has gotten busted many times for growing, but it wasn't until the 5th time that her former husband and she actually got arrested. By then she had been growing for over eighteen years and she never intended it for big sale. Medical #Marijuana was not a thing in America until she challenged California law. With the assistance of her husband Mike, she treated her epilepsy with cannabis for several years before being arrested twice for cultivating plants.
She went to court pleading not guilty because she was growing it as a medicine for myself. Her plea started a whole new way of looking at cannabis, invoking the medical necessity defense. The state refused to prosecute the corrals both times, but the incident put them at the center of a newly forming push toward medical legalization in California, culminating in the passage of "Proposition 215".
She formed "Wo/Men's Alliance for Medical Marijuana", the country's first caregiver co-op, which continues to function until January 1st, 2018. Over the years the financial climate around cannabis in the United States has changed into a million dollar industry, but she still isn't interested in making money off of cannabis. She has witnessed nearly sixty patients in her collective become homeless following their diagnosis due to medical bankruptcy, she said:
I know I can make a lot of money off pot, but I don't really work with pot, I work with people. People don't have to be suffering. If they are in pain, we can help excavate that instead of adding to it, which is what the market place does. It creates a false sense of value, when the real value is asking: How can this plant help the situation that you're in? Personally I don't think my needs are greater than somebody who's sick.
The Corrals & WAMM
On September 5, 2002, the U.S. "Drug Enforcement Administration" raided the corrals collective garden, seized and destroyed patients' medical marijuana. After 2 weeks the corrals planned an action joined by Santa Cruz City and County officials, supervisors, physicians and other supporters while thousands gathered to observe 13 "WAMM" members receive their marijuana medicine on the steps of City Hall.
The corrals have not faltered form their work, in fact "WAMM" has grown stronger. The "Drug Czar" requesting an injunction against the federal government so that the corrals may continue to grow in their collective garden barring any reprisal from federal authorities. The corrals have also engaged in a lawsuit for return of the marijuana taken by the DEA.
WAMM (1993-2018) / The Tragic Irony
So, the federal government was unable to shut them down on September 5, 2002 but the "Tragic Irony", California government has effectively shut them down on January 1st, 2018 and since then, "WAMM" (1993-2018) that serving more than 2,000 men and women, has been unable to dispense medical cannabis to its patients because of California's new cannabis law.
In The Midst Of Darkness / WAMM Still In Transition
Today, "WAMM" is still in transition, still figuring out its place in California’s new legal system. Corral says that "WAMM" has just finalized renting a building in downtown Santa Cruz, where they’ll be able to offer cannabis education courses, host fun events like comedy shows, and have a doctor and a chemist volunteering there.
But for now, as the sun bends behind the redwood ridge, Corral is thinking about how to make room on the farm for all the guests’ cars who will be arriving for the harvest party and helping her mother feed the bees.