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Code of the West

Producers Rebecca Richman Cohen, Francisco Bello


In Montana, a climactic vote is underway. The Capitol’s halls are packed with concerned citizens crying a litany of passionate appeals. Lawmakers press “yay” or “nay” buttons. The vote concludes: “House Bill 161 has passed.” The House of Representatives has voted to end medical marijuana in the state of Montana. Will the Senate and the Governor follow the course of the House of Representatives? A showdown is set. Activists statewide rally support among citizens already polarized on the issue. Chronically ill patients and growers clash with educators, parents, and clergy. The FBI raids marijuana growhouses across Montana without making drug related arrests. In this charged environment, legislators must decide the fate of the law. Sixteen states and Washington DC have legalized medical marijuana. As more states follow the trend, will Montana be the first to revert to prohibition?  Set against the sweeping vistas of the Rockies, the steamy lamplight of marijuana grow houses, and the cold sterility of the hospice ward, Code of the West is a about the many lives and fraught emotions tied to the most challenging drug policy reform debate in the country today.

Code of the West is a Cinereach grantee.