Medical Marijuana Patients Are Forced Back into Hiding in California

The pain started for Randy Barrett when he was thirteen years old. He was whipping a three-wheeled motorcycle around the hills of Martinez, California. Back then, riding ATVs was “just part of life,” he said. “This was the Seventies and Eighties. We had dirt bikes; we had three-wheelers — the ones with a big old front rubber tire. I was driving around in the dirt and hit a patch of concrete in the road that caught the front tire and shot me forward.”

Barrett’s chest bent around the handlebar and he “flew off and flipped and landed in someone’s front yard,” he said.

He didn’t go to the hospital. He went home and told his mom. ‘”Just walk it off,'” Barrett recalled his mother saying. ‘”It’s going to be okay. Just go to bed.’ That was just how it was back then.”

Barrett walked it off, and went to bed. The teenager healed and eventually forgot about the motorcycle accident, until decades later, when, in 2010, a doctor told him that he had dislocated some ribs and vertebrae in his back and neck during the childhood incident. “The doctor told me to take my shirt off and asked, ‘Did you get hit in the chest before?’ I said, ‘Not really.’ He said, ‘Really? There’s this mark right across your chest. It looks a bar had hit it.’ The motorcycle accident — that was it.”

– Read the entire article at AlterNet.