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Advocates on both sides of the medical marijuana controversy will have a conversation -- not a debate -- at the Oct. 17 Good Talks for the Good Life event, exploring the questions and research surrounding this issue.

The Good Talks event will feature Matthew Schweich, deputy director of Marijuana Policy Project (mpp.org), which supports allowing access to marijuana; and Luke Niforatos, chief of staff for Smart Approaches to Marijuana (learnaboutsam.org), which opposes legalization of the drug.

The conversation will be moderated by Alex McKiernan, founder of the Lydia Foundation, a Nebraska nonprofit whose sole aim is to foster productive conversations on divisive issues.

Good Talks for the Good Life is scheduled for 7 p.m. in the University of Nebraska Union Auditorium, 1400 R St. The event is free, but seating is limited. Visit goodtalksgoodlife.org for more information and to reserve a seat.

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The medical marijuana discussion is the first Good Talks event sponsored by the Lydia Foundation. Good Talks features moderated discussions on divisive topics where respected thinkers will be pushed to engage with the truths of opposing viewpoints in search of common ground, said McKiernan.

Medical marijuana will be part of the Nebraska conversation this fall, with supporters gathering signatures on a proposed constitutional amendment ballot issue and a bill allowing the use of medical marijuana before the Nebraska Unicameral.

The foundation also sponsors Science For The Rest Of Us (scienceforus.org), which features conversations, through podcasts, with scientists to understand the science behind controversial issues like genetic engineering, climate control and gun violence. The current episode investigates the science of medical marijuana.

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