Pubdate: Sat, 07 Feb 2015
Source: Ashland Daily Tidings (OR)
Copyright: 2015 Ashland Daily Tidings
Author: R.L. Tokareff
Note: R.L. Tokareff Lives in Ashland.


What is up with the Jackson County Board of Commissioners' failure to 
understand the clearly written law that states "no county or city of 
this state shall impose any fee or tax ... in connection with the 
purchase, sale, production, processing, transportation and delivery 
of marijuana items"?

Are commissioners listening only to a small group of big-mouth 
conservative prohibitionists?

Are they officials that represent all the people of Jackson County? 
Are they willing to subvert the vote of the people to stall, delay 
and derail in anyway they can a state law overwhelmingly approved by 
the voters, only to satisfy a small vocal minority? Actions speak 
louder than words.

The actions of State Sen. Jackie Winters, R-Salem, who introduced SB 
542, speak volumes about how the prohibitionists are willing to 
subvert the voting process. How is this SB 542 not the result of a 
small, vocal minority attempting to subvert the will of the majority?

A tax on a medicine? A tax that was passed on medical marijuana 
before Measure 91 was voted on by the people? Does "taxation without 
representation" ring any bells?

This is not a tax that they or their supporters will ever pay, so 
it's really easy for the conservatives prohibitionists to support. 
Remember, this is the same "it's for the children" crowd who are so 
worried about cannabis and kids but are against taxing for education, 
libraries, child care, public transportation and shelters for the homeless.

Are the commissioners wasting $100,000 on an election for a tax that 
is clearly not wanted and would be possibly illegal as shown by the 
last election? Not to mention the costly litigation that will surely follow.

"Most likely, there will be a legal challenge at some point in time, 
but I don't want to speak about that at this time," Commisisoner Doug 
Breidenthal said (Mail Tribune, Sunday, Feb. 1)

You bet he doesn't want to speak about it. The cost of the election 
and the following litigation will probably exceed $250,000!

Where is the fiscal responsibility?

This reminds me of Sheriff Winters' folly of denying medical cannabis 
users concealed handgun licenses; that conservative prohibitionist 
move cost the county tens of thousands of dollars for nothing.

This is a back-door attempt by the prohibitionists to change the 
election they lost. It is also an obvious attempt to drive up the 
price of cannabis with taxes to force people into the black market so 
that they, the prohibitionists, can say that legalization does not work.

Is this what you voted for when you voted for Measure 91? If not 
call, mail or email your commissioners and let them know how you 
feel. What"s next? A special election to reconsider the GMO ban?

Clearly a prohibitionist, Breidenthal, commented, "Since Colorado 
legalized recreational marijuana, the number of 
driving-while-intoxicated cases in Denver County has increased 
substantially." (Mail Tribune, Sunday, Feb. 1)

"Labor Day weekend there were a total of 157 DUIs - only one of which 
was marijuana-related ... the driver was stopped for turning 
improperly." (Denver Westworld, Dec. 5, 2013)

Perhaps he did not read the study published in October 2012 by the 
University of Oregon, Montana State University and the University of 
Colorado, which stated that after 17 states had legalized medical 
cannabis, "Within the first full year of legal (medical marijuana), 
the study reported, traffic fatalities in those states had decreased 
by as much as 11 percent."

With 20 percent of the generated revenue going to local law 
enforcement, please explain how this constitutes a "financial strain 
that the legalization of marijuana will place on local law 
enforcement" as stated in the Mail Tribune front page story, Sunday, Feb. 1.

Who said this, the reporter or a public official? Is this an opinion, 
a quote, or a fact? Maybe a reporter of yours could make a phone call 
or walk across the hall and find out.

In this country the will of the people's vote is supposed to be 
sacrosanct. Does this seem to be the case in Jackson County?

"The marijuana movement is a tsunami of intelligence moving across 
this country of ignorance, and it's killing everything ignorant in 
its wake, and it's not going to stop." - American freedom fighter Tommy Chong.

In Colorado and Washington the crime rates are down and revenue is 
up. I expect the same will happen in Oregon.
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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom