AUSTIN — For years, Joshua Raines has been using marijuana illegally to treat the epilepsy and PTSD he developed during his five years in the Army. His diagnosis was set off after suffering a traumatic brain injury during a bomb explosion while in Afghanistan.
Raines, 31, has been eligible for a legal prescription of medical marijuana since 2015, when Texas lawmakers approved the Compassionate Use Program for patients with intractable epilepsy.
But Raines, who lives in Springtown, about an hour west of Dallas, has resisted seeking out a prescription. If he did, the veteran and Purple Heart recipient would give up his right to purchase a gun.
“Why am I going to give up one of my rights because I found an organic plant that some are uncomfortable with?” he said. “I’m not going to do that. I’m not going to trade my rights like baseball cards.”