Although California residents had approved a ballot initiative legalizing the use of marijuana for medical purposes, Diane Monson was surprised when the Drug Enforcement Agency seized the six plants in her backyard as illegal contraband under federal law. Monson used marijuana to treat her chronic back pain, and she found an ally in activist and fellow cannabis patient Angel Raich. Together, Raich and Monson sued the federal government, claiming that the federal ban on marijuana use was an unconstitutional exercise of Congressional authority under the Constitution's Commerce Clause. The documentary tells the story of this clash of federal and state power through interviews with Monson and Raich; their attorneys Robert Raich and Randy Barnett; U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft and Acting U.S. Attorney John Vincent; and Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey.
The information below has been drawn from sources outside of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Libraries. In most instances, the information will be from sources that have not been peer reviewed by scholarly or research communities. Please report cases in which the information is inaccurate through the Contact Us link below.