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1Canada: Ottawa Should Step Up Battle on Alcohol Abuse: CentreMon, 20 Oct 2014
Source:Montreal Gazette (CN QU) Author:O'Neil, Peter Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:10/21/2014

Booze Causes More Harm Than Drugs, Should Be in National Anti-Drugstrategy

OTTAWA - The Harper government, which has waged a long and aggressive campaign against illicit drug use, should put more energy into the battle against alcohol abuse, according to the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse.

The Health Canada-funded organization wants the federal government to include alcohol in its $570-million National Anti-Drug Strategy that was launched shortly after the Conservatives took power in 2006.

The Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse, which has already gone public to call on Ottawa to undertake a study on the public health implications of decriminalization or legalization of pot, argues that alcohol causes far more harm in Canada than drugs.

[continues 381 words]

2Canada: Feds Should Do More to Fight Alcohol Abuse, HealthMon, 20 Oct 2014
Source:Windsor Star (CN ON) Author:O'Neil, Peter Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:10/21/2014

OTTAWA - The Conservative government, which has waged a long and aggressive campaign against illicit drug use, should put more energy into the battle against alcohol abuse, according to the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse.

The Health Canada-funded organization wants the federal government to include alcohol in its $570-million National Anti-Drug Strategy that was launched shortly after the Conservatives took power in 2006.

The Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse, which has already gone public to call on Ottawa to undertake a study on the public health implications of decriminalization or legalization of pot, argues that alcohol causes far more harm in Canada than drugs.

[continues 302 words]

3Canada: Wage War on Booze, Health Group Tells OttawaMon, 20 Oct 2014
Source:Vancouver Sun (CN BC) Author:O'Neil, Peter Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:10/21/2014

Booze Causes More Harm Than Drugs and Should Be Added to National Anti-Drug Strategy

OTTAWA - The Harper government, which has waged a long and aggressive campaign against illicit drug use, should put more energy into the battle against alcohol abuse, according to the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse.

The Health Canada-funded organization wants the federal government to include alcohol in its $ 570- million National Anti- Drug Strategy that was launched shortly after the Conservatives took power in 2006.

The Canadian Centre for Substance Abuse, which has already gone public to call on Ottawa to undertake a study on the public health implications of decriminalization or legalization of pot, argues that alcohol causes far more harm in Canada than drugs.

[continues 381 words]

4 US FL: LTE: Look at Pot's BackerSat, 18 Oct 2014
Source:Daytona Beach News-Journal (FL) Author:Bowman, Jim Area:Florida Lines:53 Added:10/21/2014

John Morgan makes his living with persuasive talk. When he adds millions from his own pocket, the jury - in this case the voting public - is expected to be attentive.

Are there patients in need of marijuana's health benefits? Yes, and I am in total support; in fact, we all are. However, this has never been the question. Unfortunately, it is also quite a different venue when George Soros put in his "two cents."

Will the November elections cloud our living with new recreational freedoms, and if so, how does that comport with our "just say no" advice or with maintaining highway safety? How has recreational use affected Colorado highways?

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5 US FL: LTE: Bad Message for KidsSun, 19 Oct 2014
Source:Gainesville Sun, The (FL) Author:Grantman, Roger H. Area:Florida Lines:33 Added:10/21/2014

Medical marijuana is the worst thing that could possibly happen in the state of Florida. It sends a bad message to our kids. It tells our kids that not only is marijuana use not harmful, but it is actually beneficial. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Kids mimic and follow the examples set by their parents. The slippery slope starts with medical marijuana and does not end with a soft landing. The slope ends in broken families, a wasted life, crime, violence, loss of employment (unable to pass employment drug tests), abuse, homeless existence on the street, and finally death.

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6 US FL: LTE: Don't Legalize MarijuanaSun, 19 Oct 2014
Source:Sarasota Herald-Tribune (FL) Author:Millner, Bill Area:Florida Lines:33 Added:10/21/2014

The legalization of medical marijuana in Florida would be a big mistake. Its medical value, although lauded by some, is highly questionable. Various renowned medical organizations have expressed opposition or caveats.

Medical legalization is a pathway to recreational legalization -- Colorado and Washington state, thus far. The marijuana drug is infiltrating Colorado schools! Much of the pot is sold as food: pot bars, pot gummy bears, pot cookies, pot suckers, pot hard fruit candies, and even pot soda. Is this what we want in Florida?

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7 Canada: Myths Trump Facts Among Young Pot UsersFri, 17 Oct 2014
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Barton, Adriana Area:Canada Lines:117 Added:10/21/2014

Studies have found that adolescents have a big knowledge gap when it comes to the possible dangers of marijuana use

Even though teens who smoke pot are at higher risk for cognitive problems, motor vehicle accidents and substance abuse, young Canadians see marijuana as a harmless herb.

Pot, teens say, helps them to relax, focus, drive better, be less violent and think more creatively, according to a survey by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse.

And while young people noted downsides such as "becoming lazy," the negative effects paled in comparison with the benefits they described. Some believed marijuana could "purify" the immune system, others said it could cure cancer.

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8 CN NS: Column: One Pill Can KillFri, 17 Oct 2014
Source:Amherst News (CN NS) Author:Hallee, Shirley Area:Nova Scotia Lines:87 Added:10/21/2014

This past summer, one of my columns was entitled, "Special training needed for drug dealers." The title came from a "tongue-in-cheek" comment made by Dr. Brian Ferguson. He was upset and angry because of the deaths of young people due to use of painkiller medications.

A recent article in the Chronicle Herald has put names to two victims of a one-time use of prescription medication.

Last April, Dale Jollota went into her daughter's room to wake her up for school. Olivia Jollota was sitting cross-legged on her bed with her computer on her lap - and she was dead. A toxicology report indicated Olivia had died from taking one hydromorphone pill.

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9 US PA: PUB LTE: Medical Marijuana Programs Affecting Rates ofFri, 17 Oct 2014
Source:Express-Times, The (PA) Author:Sharpe, Robert Area:Pennsylvania Lines:38 Added:10/21/2014

Regarding your thoughtful Oct. 14 editorial, the ongoing federal crackdown on legal hydrocodone has unfortunately given rise to a resurgence in illegal heroin use.

Nationally, death rates from prescription opioid pain reliever overdoses quadrupled from 1999 to 2010. Getting tough on drugs is not necessarily the answer.

New research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association shows that states with open medical marijuana access have a 25 percent lower opioid overdose death rate than marijuana prohibition states. This groundbreaking research has huge implications for states like Pennsylvania that are struggling with prescription narcotic and heroin overdoses.

The phrase "if it saves one life" has been used to justify all manner of drug war abuses. Legal marijuana access has the potential to save thousands of lives.

Robert Sharpe

Policy analyst, Common Sense for Drug Policy

Washington, D.C.

[end]

10 CN SN: PUB LTE: Don't Waste Tax Dollars on Failed MarijuanaThu, 16 Oct 2014
Source:News, The (New Glasgow, CN NS) Author:Sharpe, Robert Area:Saskatchewan Lines:44 Added:10/21/2014

To the editor,

Regarding your thoughtful Oct. 14 editorial, there is a big difference between condoning marijuana use and protecting children from drugs.

Decriminalization acknowledges the social reality of marijuana and frees users from the stigma of life-shattering criminal records. What's really needed is a regulated market with age controls.

Separating the hard and soft drug markets is critical. As long as organized crime controls marijuana distribution, consumers will continue to come into contact with sellers of hard drugs like cocaine and heroin.

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11US FL: Ad Campaigns Ramp Up For, Against Medical MarijuanaTue, 21 Oct 2014
Source:Pensacola News Journal (FL) Author:Wozniak, Mary Area:Florida Lines:Excerpt Added:10/21/2014

Amendment 2 is a con. Amendment 2 is compassion.

Medical marijuana is the devil. Medical marijuana is a godsend.

There are no shades of gray in the black and white positions of the campaigns for and against Amendment 2.

"On both sides it seems to be all or nothing," said Harris Segel, immediate past president of the Fort Myers Metro-McGregor Kiwanis Club, which had a Vote No on 2 representative speak to the group. "On one side, it's just great, don't worry about it, it will all be fine. On the other side, it's the devil's work. We are all going to hell in a handbasket if it passes."

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12 US FL: Editorial: Our View On The Proposed ConstitutionalSat, 18 Oct 2014
Source:Florida Times-Union (FL)          Area:Florida Lines:133 Added:10/20/2014

Constitutional amendments should be rare. They should be saved for issues that the regular political process is unable or unwilling to handle.

That is the reason that 60 percent is needed for amending the Florida Constitution. Direct democracy ought to be the exception in this republic.

In this general election, voters will get a break. There are just three proposed constitutional amendments on the ballot as opposed to the 11 in 2012.

YES ON AMENDMENT 1

Protecting water in the Sunshine State is likely to be the natural resource issue of the next generation, not only drinking water but the water that intersects the state like a blood system.

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13 US NY: LTE: The Buying And Selling Of Mexican PoliceMon, 20 Oct 2014
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Zinsmeister, Jeffrey Area:New York Lines:41 Added:10/20/2014

To the Editor:

Re "Mexico's Cartel Government," by Ioan Grillo (Op-Ed, Oct. 10):

As a former State Department official who covered narcotics issues in Mexico from 2012 to this year, I saw "state capture" - the taking over of chunks of government apparatus, in this case, local police and municipal authorities - up close.

Beyond making atrocities like the suspected massacre in Iguala possible, the buying and selling of Mexican police officers also warns us against well-intentioned but dangerous efforts to legalize the cultivation of drugs there.

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14 US CA: PUB LTE: Prop. 47 Will Spend Where We Need It MostMon, 20 Oct 2014
Source:San Diego Union Tribune (CA) Author:Rivera, Raymond Area:California Lines:30 Added:10/20/2014

Regarding "Prop. 47: Right, right, right - wrong" (Oct. 16): I am a certified chemical dependency counselor working with this population for more than 20 years. Here's the truth: Treatment is more cost-effective than prison.

Prop 47 will change sentences for only the lowest-level drug and property offenses. In the first five years $1 billion would go to K-12 education, mental health, drug treatment and services for crime victims.

We've been locking people up with a chemical dependency problem and it's costing us $60,000 a year per person. We could instead spend that on teachers, counselors and even police officers and save.

Raymond Rivera

San Diego

[end]

15US CA: Editorial: A Pot Shop Mess of the City Council's OwnMon, 20 Oct 2014
Source:San Diego Union Tribune (CA)          Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:10/20/2014

San Diego's first legal medical marijuana dispensary has been approved by City Hall. It could still be appealed, but it's likely the dispensary will be in operation in Otay Mesa before the year is out. A few more are expected to follow soon afterward in other city neighborhoods.

A lawyer for the new dispensary called it "a great day for the city of San Diego and its residents who need medical marijuana."

Hardly.

It is not as though patients cannot now get marijuana. There is another legal dispensary already operating just outside El Cajon. And take a look at certain alternative publications. The back pages are full of ads for pot shops throughout the city. They're all operating illegally, more than 100 of them. These joints sprout up faster than the city can shut them down.

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16 US OK: PUB LTE: Decriminalize PotSun, 19 Oct 2014
Source:Oklahoman, The (OK) Author:Wares, Daivd Area:Oklahoma Lines:47 Added:10/20/2014

"Considerable downside to decriminalization of pot" (Our Views, Oct. 13) criticized state Sen. Connie Johnson for advocating decriminalizing marijuana use. Yet any thinking person has to recognize the wisdom of Johnson's position. Pot shouldn't be categorized as a Schedule I drug. It's not addictive like opiates or amphetamines. Despite the claims of law enforcement officials, it's not a "gateway drug."

Enforcement of laws against marijuana possession, use and sale result in racial inequities in arrest and prosecution of perpetrators. A New York Times editorial on Oct. 11 noted that an equal percentage of blacks and whites use illegal drugs, but blacks are arrested three times as often. A Seattle study found that 16 percent of observed drug dealers of the five most dangerous drugs were black, but they represented 64 percent of arrests for dealing those drugs.

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17 Canada: PUB LTE: Make It Harder To GetMon, 20 Oct 2014
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Mallea, Paula Area:Canada Lines:23 Added:10/20/2014

Re Your Kids Brain On Pot (Life & Arts, Oct. 17): The point of legalization is to make it much harder for children to obtain pot. Gangsters don't care who buys their product, whether it's pot or heroin. We need to legalize and apply strict regulations, allowing public health officials - not the prison system - to deal with the negative consequences of drug use.

Paula Mallea, author, The War on Drugs; Gore Bay, Ont.

[end]

18US FL: OPED: So You Think You Want To Legalize Marijuana?Sun, 19 Oct 2014
Source:Pensacola News Journal (FL) Author:Williamson, Bob Area:Florida Lines:Excerpt Added:10/20/2014

When I was younger, I probably would have supported legalizing marijuana as well, but due to some personal trials and tribulations that I went through, Amendment 2 is something that I absolutely cannot support. And, hopefully by telling my story, I can show you, and everyone else in Florida, why this amendment is bad news, plain and simple.

Rewind to my formative years; I was far-above-average in school and a gifted athlete. But, as a child, I had endured some abuse, and subsequently, became disillusioned and ended up taking some wrong turns and making some bad decisions. I had started hanging around with the wrong crowd, began drinking alcohol, and graduated to marijuana and pills.

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19US FL: Amendment 2 Fight Gets Into Rhetorical WeedsSun, 19 Oct 2014
Source:Tampa Tribune (FL) Author:Stockfisch, Jerome R. Area:Florida Lines:Excerpt Added:10/20/2014

Those For And Against Ballot Initiative Are Busy Parsing Its Language

TAMPA -On Nov. 4, voters will determine whether Florida becomes the 24th state and the first in the South to approve a comprehensive medical marijuana program.

After failing to get the state Legislature to place the measure on the ballot, advocates for medical pot took to the streets, exceeding the 683,000 petition signatures needed to put the issue to voters and, if approved, write it into the Florida Constitution.

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20US FL: OPED: Why Parents Should Be Alarmed About Amendment 2Sun, 19 Oct 2014
Source:Tampa Tribune (FL) Author:Gee, David Area:Florida Lines:Excerpt Added:10/20/2014

By now we've all heard the arguments for and against the legalization of 'medical' marijuana under Amendment 2. The amount of inaccurate and confusing information about the legalization of 'medical' marijuana can overwhelm parents.

Some of the information we hear about cannabis is conflicting, making it hard to understand the ways it may affect our children. Is it addictive? Does it cause psychosis? Is it really a medicine? What will happen if my child uses it? What should I tell - or not tell - my child about it?

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