Home Office Fact-Finders Reveal Long-Delayed Report Legalisation
Policies Do Not Result in Wider Use
The Home Office comparison of international drug laws, published
today, represents the first official recognition since the 1971
Misuse of Drugs Act that there is no direct link between being "tough
on drugs" and tackling the problem.
The report, which has been signed off by both the Conservative home
secretary, Theresa May, and the Liberal Democrat crime prevention
minister, Norman Baker, is based on an in-depth study of drug laws in
11 countries ranging from the zero-tolerance of Japan to the
legalisation of Uruguay.
[continues 716 words]
No party ever won or lost an election because of its drug policy.
Yet it is a subject that strikes fear in the hearts of most
politicians and leaves them deaf to demands for a review or reform.
They are locked in the old wisdom that if drug use is harmful the
best way of tackling it is punishment, too timid to examine the facts
or challenge conventional thinking - even though a significant number
of ministers in both past and present cabinets, including the prime
minister, admit that they have experimented with drugs themselves.
Only the Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg has consistently argued
that policy should be based on an examination of what works.
[continues 645 words]
Home Office Study Finds No Evidence That Harsh Sentencing Curbs Illegal Use
There is no evidence that tough enforcement of the drug laws on
personal possession leads to lower levels of drug use, according to
the government's first evidence-based study.
Examining international drug laws, the groundbreaking Home Office
document published today brings to an end 40 years of almost unbroken
official political rhetoric that only harsher penalties can tackle
the problem caused by the likes of heroin, cocaine or cannabis.
[continues 852 words]
Floridians have been bombarded with press coverage of Amendment 2.
Yet, for all the noise, there are important aspects of this
discussion that have barely been touched upon, including the
beginning of the medical-marijuana movement. How many Floridians are
aware that a native son of the Sunshine State is the father of this
movement? His name was Robert C. Randall - my late husband.
Robert was born and raised in Sarasota. He was diagnosed with
glaucoma at a young age. In the early 1970s, he accidentally
discovered that his vision improved when he used cannabis. In those
days, not many people knew about the medical uses of cannabis. We
were convinced Robert had made a singular discovery. Imagine our
surprise when, just a few weeks after our arrest in August 1975, we
obtained a document from the National Institute on Drug Abuse titled
"Marihuana[sic] and Health." It was an annual report that was sent to
Congress, and inside we found a small section called "Therapeutic
Uses." Glaucoma was prominently featured.
[continues 518 words]
On Oct. 21, Rich Anderson publicly announced that the legalization of
marijuana is to blame for many of the problems our city is facing.
Considering that under his tenure, the city has banned all access
points for medical marijuana patients, and that he continues to
uphold restrictive policies to keep out large legal I-502 grow
operations, which bring much needed jobs and tax revenue to our city,
the real problem we face is Anderson's conservative reefer-mad morality.
By restricting legal access to marijuana in our city, not only does
he blatantly ignore almost 60 percent of the voters' wishes, his
policies are undermining the legalization effort, which in turn,
allows the black market to thrive. Politics require the illusion of
choice and the Reganomically trained accountant turned councilman
naively believes he can eradicate marijuana in our community "by just
saying no." The only real choice Mr. Anderson has is to allow
marijuana here legally or illegally. Mr. Anderson has made his
choice. Now it's time we make ours: Vote Nov. 4 to remove delusional
politicians who represent the misguided moral minority so we can
finally put an end to the failed prohibition on pot.
Two years ago, we lost the vote on two vital issues: The marriage
amendment and voter ID. There is another big issue lurking and, it
seems to me, will be coming up in the near future. That is
legalization of marijuana. It is already legal in Minnesota for
medical use, and that has been a first step to further open the door
to "recreational" marijuana. From information out of Colorado, it has
been socially disastrous and legally chaotic.
We failed to protect the future of our children and grandchildren two
years ago. Don't let it happen again. Get out and vote for the
conservative candidates who will support your values. It really is important.
DON ENGEBRETSON, Excelsior
First Commons Debate for a Generation Offers Rare Chance for Honest Discussion
Suppressed Home Office Report Casts Doubt on Current Punitive Approach
A punitive approach to drug abuse including locking up addicts fails
to curb levels of addiction, a Home Office study warns today, as MPs
stage the first Commons debate on drugs legislation in a generation.
The report suggests treating possession of drugs as a health rather
than criminal matter reduces drug deaths and HIV infection rates
without increasing addiction levels.
[continues 1081 words]
The long-delayed report released by the Home Office highlights how
its own approach to drugs is not based on evidence.
In particular, the report which looks at the effectiveness of other
countries' drug policies concludes that harsh penalties for drug
users have no effect on levels of drug use. That punitive drug laws
have a deterrent effect is a key assumption underpinning both the
UK's approach and prohibitionist drug policy more broadly. The report
says: "We did not in our fact-finding observe any obvious
relationship between the toughness of a country's enforcement against
drug possession, and levels of drug use in that country."
[continues 382 words]
Let Common Sense Prevail When at Last the Commons Opens Itself Up to
a Debate on Drugs
Few areas of public policy are as badly served by our political
classes as that governing drug use. There is very little incentive
for any politician even to suggest a rational approach to the
problem. If the press doesn't finish off your career, then your
political opponents, usually hypocritically, will use the supposedly
maverick suggestion as a golden opportunity to smear and discredit
you. If you happen to be a progressive sort, you will be dubbed "high
on tax and soft on drugs" or the like, quite often by people who are
even on the left themselves people who should know better and who,
in reality, but very privately, most likely share the same outlook.
[continues 511 words]
Regarding "A pot shop mess of the City Council's own making" (Oct.
19): Why do we need "pot shops"? If it's a pharmaceutical, dispense
it at the pharmacy like other drugs.
The pharmacies we already have seem to be doing a good job of filling
prescriptions and only letting people have what is prescribed by
their doctors. It seems all a pot shop does is put a drug into the
hands of people not suited for or educated in dispensing pharmaceuticals.
Now we have another group of laws to legalize a business that exists
and seems to be doing it right.
High Times, the venerable marijuana magazine found in headshops and
behind cardboard at your favorite corner liquor store, turned 40 recently.
In celebration, the magazine released a coffee table book, which is
generously reviewed in the New York Times by Dwight Garner. It sounds
like a good read, chronicling the magazine's wild early days, the
suicide of "crusading journalist" and founder Tom Forcade at 33, and
the magazine's commercial bumps on its road to middle age. It's easy
to forget that High Times has boasted genuine journalism, art and
literature during its tenure.
[continues 556 words]
Nearly two decades after a reporter exposed a connection between the
CIA and crack cocaine in America, Hollywood chimes in with a major movie
This one has all the ingredients of a dreamed-up Hollywood
blockbuster: Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist uncovers a big story
involving drugs, the CIA and a guerrilla army. Despite threats and
intimidation, he writes an explosive expose and catches national
attention. But the fates shift. Our reporter's story is torn apart by
the country's leading media; he is betrayed by his own newspaper.
Though the big story turns out to be true, the writer commits suicide
and becomes a cautionary tale.
[continues 3778 words]
Do you have a stance on Proposition 47 and, if it passes, how do you
think it will impact marijuana in the state? Also, have any voting
advice for marijuana-related issues?
- -Reggie Stardvotar
I am glad you asked. Of course I do. Voting is the most important
thing you can do as an activist and as an American. Never let anyone
tell you that voting doesn't work. We got medical marijuana through
the vote. Voters legalized the recreational use of cannabis in
Washington and Oregon because people showed up to vote. If elections
didn't matter, the GOP wouldn't be trying to pass all these
bullshit-ass voter ID laws. Vote, vote, vote, vote, vote, vote! I
cannot stress this enough.
[continues 395 words]
Dear Stoner: Do you think the Denver Police Department is right, and
kids are going to get pot candy in their bags?
Frank N. Stein
Dear Frank: Not at all. This is just an updated version of the tired
old story that fearmongering cops - and paranoid parents - have been
pushing since the '70s. The idea is that some mythical Halloween
Scrooge is out to hurt kids by giving away tainted candy.
The thing is, the story isn't true; it's an urban legend.
[continues 418 words]
Ah, trick or treating. Remember when your parents let you eat any
unwrapped treat you were handed by strangers?
If you're under 30, probably not. Parents have long been wary that
unpackaged treats could contain razor blades. Or shards of glass. Or anthrax.
But this Halloween, Colorado kids are facing a new threat, according
to numerous national headlines: candy laced with marijuana.
Several major news outlets (including Fox and CBS) recently claimed
that Colorado-based CB Scientific designed a product for parents to
test Halloween candy for marijuana.
[continues 784 words]
A medical marijuana regulations panel in Maryland delayed a vote
Tuesday in order to take a second look at fees for growers,
dispensers and patients, which critics say are too high.
The commission, which has been criticized for taking too long to
finalize regulations, also has added marijuana extracts to the
regulations, so patients could ingest the drug without smoking, after
receiving input from the public. Maryland passed legislation this
year authorizing 15 licensed marijuana growers after a
medical-marijuana law approved in 2013 stalled.
[continues 78 words]
Legalization Outlook Goes From Solid to Shaky in Some States
WASHINGTON- With pot sold openly to any adult who wants it in
Colorado and Washington, marijuana advocates were hoping restrictions
in other states would fall like dominoes this election season,
opening the way for a push to change federal drug laws.
They were not anticipating a multimillion-dollar wager against them
by a casino mogul. Or a spike in voter anxiety amid bureaucratic
stumbles in regulating the nascent recreational pot market. Now,
legalization measures are teetering in Florida, Oregon and Alaska,
states where supporters were confident of victory only a few months ago.
[continues 575 words]
Those of us who live and raise our families out here in the country
need the help of our fellow voters in the cities and towns of Butte
County. Please vote yes on Measure A (A is OK). Please vote no on
Measure B (B is bad).
The pot growing "industry" that has infected Butte County over the
past three years has brought us a huge, well-documented downside.
Commercial-sized grows have proliferated all over our county, and
have adversely affected our quality of life. The Pottie People depend
on false arguments, rationalization, intimidation and a huge war
chest. If you read Measure B closely, you will see that it includes a
huge clinker. Not only does it seek to continue excess growing for
profit, it also prohibits our elected Board of Supervisors from
making any future changes to the Butte County marijuana ordinance.
That, folks, takes a huge wrecking ball to your constitutional right
to representative government.
[continues 52 words]
Last week, the Alaska Federation of Natives, the state's largest
Native organization, passed a resolution opposing Ballot Measure 2,
which would legalize and tax recreational marijuana. AFN cited
numerous concerns in passing the resolution, including the issue of
local control, a contentious point in the debate over whether to
legalize pot, and one not unique to Alaska, though it plays perhaps a
more significant role here than elsewhere.
The opposition wasn't a surprise. Native organizations -- including
numerous Alaska Native corporations, tribes, and corporation CEOs --
have consistently opposed the measure.
[continues 964 words]
Despite years of advocating for marijuana legalization across the
country, there's one thing former Seattle Chief of Police Norm
Stamper hasn't done. The 34-year law enforcement veteran has never
gone door-knocking for a political campaign.
"I'm a little scared," he joked Tuesday, moments before he and a
handful of other proponents of Ballot Measure 2, an initiative
seeking to legalize recreational marijuana in Alaska, headed out to
canvass Alaskans in Anchorage's Inlet View neighborhood.
Knocking on doors throughout the neighborhood bordering scenic
Westchester Lagoon and downtown Anchorage was the last stop for
Stamper, who spent several days making the rounds in Anchorage,
visiting with media and appearing on a variety of call-in talk shows.
The shows ranged from serious talk radio with conservative host
Michael Dukes on KBYR to shows geared toward a younger crowd,
including rock station KWHL's "Bob and Mark Show" and KFAT's "Morning Chaos."
[continues 920 words]
Under Ordinance, Site Too Close to Park
SAN DIEGO - A marijuana dispensary proposed near the sports arena was
rejected on Wednesday for being too close to Mission Bay Park, even
though the pot shop would be separated from the park by Interstate 8
and the San Diego River.
Supporters of the proposed dispensary called the ruling absurd, and
the group trying to open it said they would appeal the decision to
the Planning Commission.
City officials said the ordinance approved last winter to allow San
Diego's first legal dispensaries doesn't permit officials to consider
natural or man-made barriers in their decisions.
[continues 560 words]
Nature's Leaf Collective in Oceanside Agrees to Shut Doors by Friday
After More Than a Year of Fighting Against City
Oceanside - A medical marijuana dispensary that Oceanside has been
trying to shut down for more than a year finally agreed to close this
week, city officials said.
The Nature's Leaf Collective on Vista Way opened early last year
without a permit. It later applied for a permit but was denied
because the city's zoning regulations don't list marijuana
dispensaries as an approved use and are therefore not allowed, officials said.
[continues 405 words]
I'm the former chief prosecutor for the state of Alaska, and I'm
voting "yes" on Ballot Measure 2.
Most of my career was spent in law enforcement. I was an assistant
district attorney, a district attorney, an assistant attorney general
in Alaska's Criminal Division and Alaska's chief prosecutor/deputy
attorney general under two governors.
As chief prosecutor, I supervised all of Alaska's district attorney
offices. I also worked as special counsel to the Legislative
Committee on Local Option Laws, holding hearings to document Alaska's
problems with alcohol abuse and writing Alaska's first local option
law. Later, I worked as legal advisor to the Anchorage Youth Court.
[continues 565 words]
I really wanted to write about suicide this week, but I might be in
the Burlington County jail for a few weeks. I hate those news
articles that say "defendant" or "subject" wasn't available for
comment - he was in jail. So this is my side of the story beforehand.
The government, through its failed "War on Drugs," ruins the lives of
millions of its citizens. Those convicted of marijuana possession are
denied jobs, education benefits, and housing and welfare services.
They are digitally marked with a criminal record.
[continues 700 words]
Tres THC hombres
Bijou Wellness Center is a local old-timer, having appeared in our
first issue of ReLeaf in April 2010. But new ownership has brought
change and a new name: BWC is now Three Buds Wellness Center (2132 E.
Bijou St., 465-2407). The move comes after former Maggie's Farm
employee Reed Mason and two friends bought the business in June.
Mason says they're still working out the kinks, so there's not a ton
of innovation yet, but you can find one unique product for sale: "We
do old-time hash," the owner says. "Nobody else really does it in town.
[continues 336 words]
Contributions Go to Both Sides of Amendment 2
Supporters and opponents of medical marijuana have received large
donations to keep their messages going.
With one week to go before Election Day, supporters and opponents of
medical marijuana have received large donations to keep their messages going.
For the main organization supporting Amendment 2, People United for
Medical Marijuana, the new money has been enough that their message
is finally airing in TV ads.
According to campaign finance records posted Friday, People United
received five six-figure donations in October, making it the best
month of the year for contributions to the medical marijuana cause.
[continues 476 words]
After months of political advertisements and frenetic sign waving,
election day is just hours away.
The debate about the benefits of medical marijuana has dominated the
airwaves. This year, Maryland's governor signed a bill making it the
21st state to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes. In May, a
Florida marijuana legalization bill was approved by the Florida
Senate, making a strain of marijuana that is low in THC
(tetrahydrocannabinol) and high in cannabidiol available to patients
who meet certain requirements. The strain provides positive medical
effects without the feeling of being high. Known as "Charlotte's
Web," the cannabis oil has successfully treated the epileptic
seizures of a 5-year-old girl named Charlotte.
[continues 356 words]
In the Oct. 20 A section of The News-Journal, there are at least four
instances of violence and antisocial behavior attributed to the
recreational use of alcohol. Two of these instances are connected
with local elected officials, one was group behavior at a Pumpkin
Fest in New Hampshire and the fourth was a sad case of mistaken
identity where the bars of the local jail in Paw Paw, Michigan, were
mistaken for the bar at a woman's favorite pub, when she went there
to pick up her boyfriend - at least making her arrest for DUI one
step less for the local police officer.
[continues 206 words]
Your Health+Fitness edition of Oct. 7 carried a news clip from The
Washington Post titled "Does medical pot work? 92 percent of patients
say yes." For those who missed reading it, the following quotes may
help provide authoritative evidence of the value of medical marijuana
and refute claims such as TV's "There's nothing medical about this marijuana."
"A 2013 survey in the New England Journal of Medicine found that
nearly eight in 10 doctors approved the use of medical marijuana. Now
a representative health survey of 7,525 California adults, produced
by the Public Health Institute in partnership with the CDC, found
that 92 percent of medical marijuana patients said (that it)
alleviated symptoms of their serious medical conditions, including
chronic pain, arthritis, migraine and cancer."
[continues 59 words]
News That Zehaf-Bibeau Worked in 'Oilfields' Shows Shortage of Labour
There are so many jobs that need to be filled in Alberta's oilpatch
that even people such as Ottawa gunman Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, a
confessed crack addict with a criminal record, have been able to find
work, industry experts say.
Thousands of seasonal workers and contractors from across Canada
travel to Alberta during each drilling season in search of
high-paying jobs on drilling rigs, cooking meals in work camps, as
labourers on fracking crews or doing construction work on facilities
in the oilsands.
[continues 598 words]
3 States Had Appeared Poised to Legalize
WASHINGTON - With pot sold openly to any adult who wants it in
Colorado and Washington state, marijuana advocates were hoping
restrictions in other states would fall like dominoes this election
season, opening the way for a push in Congress to change federal drug laws.
They were not anticipating a multimillion-dollar wager against them
by a casino mogul. Or a spike in voter anxiety amid bureaucratic
stumbles in regulating the nascent recreational pot market. Or an
unfortunate cellphone video from a rowdy frat bar called Boots N Buckles.
[continues 976 words]
Legalizing Drug Would Lower Violence, Other Negative Factors, but
Discussion of Addiction Is Vital, Too
On a warm Seattle summer evening in 1978, my wife wanted to talk
about my increasingly frequent pot smoking: "I feel you've abandoned
me, that the person I married - even when you're sitting next to me
on the couch - is not there."
She had complained before about my use, and I'd tried to reassure
her. "It's not as if I'm stoned every day," I'd counter. "Is it that
different from having a drink or two?" I'd promise to cut back, but
my resolve would give way, and I'd start to cut corners, making
exceptions to the rules I'd set. Eventually I'd slide right back to
where I started.
[continues 646 words]
Advisory Questions Can Serve a Role in Public Policy Decisions
As the people working on marijuana decriminalization, we appreciate
the opportunity to respond to the "emphatic no" that the Albuquerque
Journal Editorial Board gave to our advisory question.
We have heard opponents of marijuana policy reform time and again use
every excuse in the book against us. Now the excuse is that your vote
doesn't count. We're sure that left many asking: Then why show up?
It's important to show up because every single vote counts. The
simple fact is that advisory questions do matter, they do affect the
laws our lawmakers enact, and you can help create that change.
[continues 308 words]
Mary Jones has been a lifelong resident of Ward 4.
She loves her comfortable old house.
She loves her neighbourhood because she's close to everything she
needs at this point in life, her children, her friends, her church,
her corner store and her doctor.
She likes almost all her neighbours. Except one.
That's the guy in the house across the street she suspects is selling drugs.
Jones - who requested her real name not be used because of fear of
retaliation - said at certain times of the month the house in
question is like a drive-thru.
[continues 368 words]
Critics Say Question Is Misleading; Supporters Say It Lets Voters Speak
Voters in Bernalillo and Santa Fe counties have a chance this fall to
offer their advice to policy-makers on state and local efforts to
decriminalize possession of an ounce or less of marijuana.
The election results won't enact a specific ordinance or otherwise
require the counties to take action.
Supporters say it's a chance for voters to weigh in ahead of next
year's session of the state Legislature and to encourage local
policy-makers to respond. Critics say it is disingenuous, misleading
and a transparent effort to encourage pot-smoking advocates to vote
rather than stay home.
[continues 478 words]
Commission Decides More Time Needed to Tweak Fees, Allow for Cannabis Extracts
A state commission charged with launching Maryland's lagging medical
marijuana program hit the pause button Tuesday, postponing a final
vote on already tardy regulations to tweak licensing fees and make
cannabis available to patients in liquid as well as smokeable form.
Dr. Paul W. Davies, chairman of the 15-member panel, said officials
needed more time to craft rules, particularly to allow for the
production and sale of extracts containing concentrated doses of
marijuana's therapeutic ingredients.
[continues 596 words]
On Nov. 4, Alaskans will make a decision on Ballot Measure 2: whether
to legalize the use of marijuana.
As we make this decision, it is important we base it on complete
information rather than the propaganda that is being slung.
We have the benefit of not being the first state to wrestle with this issue.
All we need to do is look as far as Colorado and Washington to truly
understand the effects of legalizing marijuana.
So what are we hearing coming out of Colorado? The legalization and
commercialization of marijuana in Colorado started less than two
years ago, and there are several problems, consequences and new
financial repercussions associated with the law. They are reporting
increased marijuana-related emergency room visits, increased hash oil
explosions, increased marijuana-involved auto fatalities, and an
increased number of workers testing positive for marijuana.
[continues 797 words]
KEIZER, Ore. - Two years after voters in Colorado and Washington
State broke the ice as the first states to legalize sales of
recreational marijuana to adults, residents of Oregon, Alaska and
Washington, D.C., will vote next week on ballot measures patterned on
those of the two pioneers. People on both sides of the issue say
these initiatives could determine whether there will be a national
tide of legalization.
A changing political landscape has weakened anti-marijuana efforts.
As the libertarian movement in the Republican Party has gained force,
with leaders like Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky,
supporting decriminalization of marijuana and others going even
further, an anchor of the conservative opposition to legalization has eroded.
[continues 1361 words]
Proposed Highway 299 broadband project secures board's support
The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to
approve an ordinance aimed at reducing neighborhood nuisances caused
by the excessive cultivation of medical marijuana in unincorporated areas.
"This is not in any shape or form Humboldt County's approach to
regulation of marijuana," 2nd District Supervisor Estelle Fennell
said. "This is addressing a nuisance created by legal medical
patients growing marijuana and the impact they have on their neighbors."
The land use ordinance limits qualified growers with Proposition 215
recommendations to 100 square feet of cannabis canopy on land parcels
an acre in size or less and up to 200 square feet of cannabis canopy
on property over an acre to 5 acres in size.
[continues 1209 words]
With its organic nurseries and converted auto body shops selling
artisanal barbecue, Berkeley's San Pablo Avenue hardly resembles a war zone.
But step into a clean and well-lit former mechanic's space, where a
bubbling fountain placed just inside the door offers a hint of peace,
and you're on the front lines of the war on drugs.
This is Berkeley Patients Group. By virtue of turning 15 years old
this Friday, the dispensary is now laying claim to the title of
California's oldest medical cannabis dispensary, which also makes it
the longest-running legal dealer of marijuana in the United States.
[continues 801 words]
Advanced Cannabis Solutions Buys Former Bank Building in S. Denver
With High Hopes.
A Colorado Springs company that leases property to marijuana growers
has acquired a former bank building in south Denver with plans to
turn it into the industry's first business incubator.
And if a consortium of marijuana businessmen cobble together the
state's first cooperative financial institution, then Advanced
Cannabis Solutions hopes to have its first location.
"The idea is for the incubator space on the second floor, but if
there's a banking opportunity, that would be explored," CEO Robert
Frichtel said. "It's an ample amount of space to do many things."
[continues 341 words]
Earlier this month, marijuana was partially decriminalized in
Maryland, making possession under 10 grams (about a third of an
ounce) subject to a citation, a fine and no jail time.
Despite some problems with the language of the law, taking jail time
off the table and ensuring no criminal records for owners of small
quantities of marijuana are positive first steps in changing the
state's drug policy. That said, the Maryland legislature has been far
too timid in its approach and should instead adopt a Colorado-like
model for legalization.
[continues 541 words]
Slow that train down, Casey.
Alaskans are deciding between now and 8 p.m. on Election Day whether
to become the third state in the union to legalize and regulate
marijuana. We should decide no.
What's the compelling reason to legalize marijuana? What do we gain?
Proponents argue that legalization is a triumph of reason over fear.
Alaskans' passage of a medical marijuana law in 1998 fit that
argument. But this version of legalization that is Ballot Measure 2
is a toke or two over the line.
[continues 581 words]
Kids believe what we tell them, but they're not stupid. As a society
we tell kids many things about living healthy lives and following
laws. And then, God help us, they see what we do.
Every kid since the beginning of the Drug War has grown up with
strong warnings against all drugs, including marijuana, listed under
the federal government's most dangerous tier of controlled
substances. But this being Alaska, where per capita use rates have
been among the highest in the U.S. for years, it doesn't take long to
learn growing up here, as I did, that responsible, upstanding people
from all walks of life use cannabis recreationally, even regularly.
It's no secret that soft attitudes toward marijuana have existed in
Alaska for a long time. They've softened so much recently that Alaska
could become the third state to correct the messages we already send
kids about marijuana while relatively more harmful substances remain
legal and common.
[continues 1067 words]
Sheriff's officials are warning parents to be on the lookout for
candies infused with marijuana when their children go out trick-or-treating.
Some treats that look like regular chocolate bars, brownies or jelly
candies may actually contain THC, the active ingredient in marijuana,
and can make a child sick, said sheriff's Lt. Chris May.
Officials say that some products laced with marijuana may be
difficult to spot, and they are concerned that just a small bite of a
marijuana cookie or gummy bear could have a big effect because of the
concentration of THC some include.
[continues 257 words]
When Colorado voters in 2012 approved a ballot measure legalizing
marijuana, the state did not merely break new ground in the ongoing
battle over narcotics policy. It also bolstered an innovative new
political message that compares cannabis to alcohol.
Two years later, that comparison is being deployed in key marijuana
related elections throughout the country, and drug reform advocates
are so sure marijuana is safer than alcohol, they are now challenging
police to a "drug duel" to prove their point.
The proposal for the duel from David Boyer, an official with the
Maine chapter of the Marijuana Policy Project, came after South
Portland Police Chief Edward Googins announced his opposition to a
municipal referendum to legalize marijuana possession.
[continues 522 words]
Not everybody has been happy with Nevada's medical marijuana process,
but that doesn't mean it's broken.
That's according to investment banker Leslie Bocskor, a founding
chairman of the Nevada Cannabis Industry Association and adviser to
five Southern Nevada medical pot permit hopefuls.
Bocskor has provided seed funding and permitting guidance to a dozen
pot entrepreneurs looking to navigate land use and business licensing
in Nevada and two other states.
He said the Silver State's two-pronged approach to pot permitting has
acquitted itself nicely, especially when stacked up against
oft-criticized systems in Colorado and California.
[continues 282 words]
NEW YORK (AP) - A woman who was in custody on a drug-related arrest
died after suffering an apparent seizure while she was being
processed, according to the New York Police Department.
Authorities say 22-yearold Jasmine Lawrence of the Bronx had been
arrested around 8 p.m. Saturday on Bedford Avenue in Brooklyn on
charges of criminal sale of marijuana and unlawful possession of marijuana.
She was put into a holding cell at the 79th precinct around 10 p.m.
as her arrest was processed. Police said shortly before midnight she
had an apparent seizure in the cell area. Emergency medical personnel
arrived minutes later. She was taken to the hospital at 12:44 a.m.
Sunday, and pronounced dead a short time later.
The medical examiner will determine cause of death.
I recently received a mailer from the No on 91 campaign. It may as
well have read, "Be afraid! Be very afraid!"
The piece of propaganda was chock full of sensationalism, misleading
statements and outright lies.
Sensationalism - "Increase of 268 percent in poison control center
calls for children (ages 0-5) for marijuana." The numbers behind "268
percent" are 5 and 18, which don't seem extremely large compared with
For some context, what are the comparable numbers for alcohol and
other household substances? Also, the mailer references children age
5 and under; how many infants are getting into their parents' stash?
That's just inflammatory.
[continues 149 words]
Measure 91 is a bad idea for Oregon. It is a bad idea for our
communities, and it's a very bad idea for our children and youth.
On Nov. 4, voters in Oregon will make a crucial decision: whether to
legalize marijuana for recreational use. Since we already have
approved the legal use of marijuana for medical purposes, the message
we'd be sending to our young people by approving Measure 91 may not
seem like a big deal.
It is a big deal.
[continues 649 words]