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Singer Melissa Etheridge and others speak out in favor of legalizing marijuana

October 21, 2010 | 12:45 pm

Rock singer Melissa Etheridge says she used medicinal marijuana while recovering from breast cancer and supports California’s Proposition 19, the November ballot initiative that would legalize pot.

Etheridge said as she underwent chemotherapy she was given a choice of using 10 drugs with various side effects or a "natural solution."

Although referring to herself as a medicinal marijuana user, the singer said she would like to see pot become legal because “I don’t want to look like a criminal to my children anymore. I want them to know this is a choice that you make as a responsible adult.”

Etheridge joined actors Danny Glover and Hal Sparks and former LAPD Deputy Chief Steve Downing, former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson and activist Sarah Lovering at a news conference at Cafe Was in Hollywood to announce their support for Proposition 19.

The ballot measure would allow adults 21 and older to grow and possess marijuana and would authorize cities and counties to approve cultivation, sale and taxation.

The news conference was organized to promote the initiative and draw attention to BuddhaFest, which aims to raise awareness about marijuana. The festival, with entertainment on 10 stages, starts Saturday at noon and lasts until 2 a.m. at Los Angeles Center Studios in downtown L.A.

-- Ann Simmons

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