Montel Williams Opens Marijuana Shop in Sacramento

By Dirk Hanson 06/20/11

“I want this to be someplace your mother and father could see themselves walk into.”

Former talk show host on drugs.
Photo via celebritysmackblog

Admit it, you’ve been wondering: What ever happened to talk show host Montel Williams—or Arsenio Hall, come to think of it? There’s no shame in that, and anyway, Montel we can help you with. As it turns out, he has just announced plans to open a medical marijuana dispensary in Sacramento, California.

The Montel Williams show was on television from 1991 through 2008. Williams recently guest-hosted Good Day Sacramento on KMAX TV. “It’s absurd,” Williams said, referring to the stigma associated with his new line of work. “I can go get morphine pumped into my system [for pain] and nobody’s got a problem. But all of a sudden they’re really worried if I smoked a joint.”

But this is Montel, bear in mind and Montel cares. So you just have to expect that the motivation will prove to be high-minded. And it does. The Sacramento Bee explains: “Prescription drugs early shut down my kidneys,” Williams said, referring to his multiple sclerosis and accompanying neurological pain. “Then a doctor suggested I try medical marijuana.” Williams is a partner in the new Abatin Wellness Cooperative in midtown Sacramento. The office features flat panel displays playing informative videos, cameras everywhere, and a minimum of four security guards. “While adhering to every single state law, we want to provide safe access for patients and really medicalize this. Patients should be put first,” said Williams. “I want this to be someplace your mother and father could see themselves walk into.”

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Dirk Hanson, MA, is a freelance science writer and the author of The Chemical Carousel: What Science Tells Us About Beating Addiction. He is also the author of The New Alchemists: Silicon Valley and the Microelectronics Revolution. He has worked as a business and science reporter for numerous magazines and trade publications including Wired, Scientific American, The Dana Foundation and more. He currently edits the Addiction Inbox blog. Email: [email protected]