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1 US AZ: Arizona Court to Review Ruling on Marijuana, DUIThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Sun, The (Yuma, AZ)          Area:Arizona Lines:29 Added:05/28/2015

PHOENIX (AP) - The Arizona Supreme Court will review a lower court's ruling that said drivers who have medical marijuana cards can still be prosecuted under laws against driving under the influence while having marijuana in their system.

The justices agreed without comment Tuesday to review a state Court of Appeals ruling issued last November. Two defendants who had medical marijuana cards allowing them to legally smoke pot had pointed to a medical marijuana law provision that provides a partial legal shield for pot usage prescribed by a physician.

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2 US DC: Memo to Federal Workers: That's Still a No on MarijuanaThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Washington Post (DC) Author:Rein, Lisa Area:District of Columbia Lines:77 Added:05/28/2015

If you live in the District or one of the 23 states that have legalized marijuana and you work for the federal government, think twice before lighting a joint. Pot is still illegal for you. New guidance Wednesday from the Office of Personnel Management is unambiguous and stern. Federal workforce rules remain unchanged for the roughly 4.1 million federal employees and military personnel across the United States. The U.S. government still considers marijuana an illegal drug, and possessing or using it is a crime.

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3 US MA: PUB LTE: There Are Cases Where Drug Testing at Work IsThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Boston Globe (MA) Author:Glantz, Leonard H. Area:Massachusetts Lines:36 Added:05/28/2015

The article about Cristina Barbuto's firing for lawfully using medical marijuana in Massachusetts raises an important issue - that of employers testing employees for marijuana consumption without any legitimate reason for doing so ("Woman fights medical marijuana firing," Page A1, May 23).

Drug testing without cause is a holdover from the Reagan administration's failed "war on drugs." Private employers, such as Barbuto's employer, Advantage Sales and Marketing, have become law-enforcement agencies. While there may be reasons to test employees in safety-sensitive positions, such as airline pilots, there is no reason for employers to routinely test employees who work in marketing.

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4 US MA: PUB LTE: Criminalizing Addiction Is Not The AnswerThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Boston Globe (MA) Author:Newman-Polk, Lisa Area:Massachusetts Lines:36 Added:05/28/2015

RE "Mobilized against a hometown scourge" by Brian MacQuarrie (Page A1, May 17): We need to face the evidence - criminalizing addiction is not the answer. As an attorney and licensed certified social worker, I have represented and treated countless individuals addicted to opiates and other substances. I have seen firsthand that efforts to curb opiate addiction through law enforcement and the criminal justice system do not work.

When a probation officer's job includes watching probationers urinate, we have to question whether something is terribly wrong with our system.

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5US OR: Oregon Moves Toward One-Stop Shopping for Medical andThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Oregonian, The (Portland, OR) Author:Mapes, Jeff Area:Oregon Lines:Excerpt Added:05/28/2015

SALEM -- Oregon liquor control officials on Wednesday presented a plan for allowing retailers to sell both medical and recreational marijuana -- and it seemed to win support from key legislators.

Under the proposal, medical marijuana growers willing to accept strict regulatory controls would be able to sell to retailers serving both medical and recreational marijuana users.

However, there still does not appear to be any consensus on when retail sales of recreational marijuana will actually start.

Rob Patridge, chairman of the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, told legislators Wednesday that the state could run afoul of federal officials if they try to start sales before a strict "seed to sale" tracking system is in place. That will take until the last half of 2016, he said.

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6 US CO: Column: High Hopes for Improved Reporting on TeenThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Boulder Weekly (CO) Author:Dahl, Gavin Area:Colorado Lines:113 Added:05/28/2015

When Rocky Mountain Community Radio reporter Bente Birkeland began tracking legal marijuana's impacts on Colorado teenagers earlier this year, she discovered key data wasn't available.

"The state does not require schools to report marijuana incidents separately," Birkeland says. "Alcohol and tobacco are in separate categories. But marijuana shouldn't be lumped in with cocaine or pharmaceuticals. It's a tough story to report."

Birkeland personally talked to more than a dozen school districts and came away with the impression that most officials don't want to discuss drugs in schools with reporters.

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7 US CA: Column: Boom And BoomThu, 28 May 2015
Source:North Coast Journal (Arcata, CA) Author:Scott-Goforth, Grant Area:California Lines:95 Added:05/28/2015

Arcata's Medical Marijuana Innovation Area got an enthusiastic thumbs-up on May 20 from the city council, which ultimately voted unanimously in favor of the proposal, but not before an antsy, standing-room-only crowd stood by while the council spent two hours wading through the night's consent agenda. When a speaker made a plea for donations to support a two-week summer camp sponsored by a young woman's foundation, several people approached and handed her hundred dollar bills. She had come to the right meeting.

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8 US CO: Column: What Can I Do With My Vaped Weed?Thu, 28 May 2015
Source:Westword (Denver, CO) Author:Fuego, Herbert Area:Colorado Lines:60 Added:05/28/2015

Dear Stoner: I've had a vaporizer for almost a year now and have a buttload of golden-brown vaped weed saved up. Is there anything I can do with it, or have I been wasting my energy?

Nicholas

Dear Nicholas: If your vaporizer isn't turning your flower black, it might eventually pay for itself. Although it looks dead and useless, vaped cannabis still has a low percentage of THC and some cannabinoids left over. Besides giving it to your scavenger friends who never have money to pitch in, you can use your vaped pot to make hash or edibles if you're not burning it too hot.

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9 US CA: Column: Drug Eviction: Pot Shop Suffers 'HostileThu, 28 May 2015
Source:SF Weekly (CA) Author:Roberts, Chris Area:California Lines:127 Added:05/28/2015

These are good times in the marijuana business. With an adult recreational market still on the horizon, the California medical cannabis industry is enjoying its biggest boom time yet. Mobs of customers are fueling over a billion dollars a year in legal sales, but more important are the "investors." The cannabis game usually takes unkindly to outsiders, but not when they're carrying suitcases of cash, as the strange faces in expensive suits circling around the industry at all levels, looking for opportunities to buy into this multibillion-dollar game, are.

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10 US CA: Column: High And ActiveThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Sacramento News & Review (CA) Author:Bealum, Ngaio Area:California Lines:70 Added:05/28/2015

High. I was just wondering how our U.S. senators feel about marijuana. I haven't heard much.

- -Jeff

I'm glad you asked. And, no, it is not too early to start discussing the 2016 election for the Senate. As it stands now, the Democratic field has two main challengers, with Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez recently throwing her hat into the ring against California Attorney General Kamala Harris. Although Harris is the favorite, I feel Sanchez would be a better choice for cannabis users, and Californians in general, since marijuana legalization would be a boon to the welfare and economy of the entire state. Sanchez has a history of marijuana law reform support: In 2009, she told CNN, "So maybe it would be a good pilot program to see how that regulation of marijuana might happen in California since the ... majority of Californians believe maybe that should happen." Harris has recently shifted her stance somewhat; last week, she told the annual Convention of California Democrats that, "The war on drugs has failed," and, "Now is the time to end the federal ban on marijuana," but she still giggles every time she mentions marijuana, like she can't believe what she just said. Either one would be better than Senator Dianne Feinstein though. When does she retire? She hates weed.

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11 US CA: Power To The PotThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Chico News & Review, The (CA) Author:Sullivan, Dan Area:California Lines:125 Added:05/28/2015

Scientists Point to Drought Conditions Elevating Medicinal Properties of Marijuana While Bolstering Guerrilla Grows

Global warming may give a minor twist to that classic hippie bumper sticker that quips, "Acid rain: Too bad it's not as much fun as it sounds." Turns out a warming climate could boost the medicinal and psychoactive properties of plants-including cannabis.

But that's not all: Climate change also will open up higher elevations to growing weed clandestinely on public lands, a practice that's putting increased strain on fragile ecosystems. Some say relaxed marijuana laws exacerbate the problem by bringing in more growers; others argue increased regulation and oversight will eventually lead to more responsible growing practices.

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12 Germany: German Official's Push For Pot Sparks DebateWed, 27 May 2015
Source:Washington Times (DC) Author:Waters, Angela Area:Germany Lines:147 Added:05/28/2015

BERLIN - A conservative politician who crossed the aisle and has joined the German Green Party's campaign to legalize marijuana has revived a long-running debate about the drug in Europe's largest economy.

Lawmaker Joachim Pfeiffer, a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU) in the Bundestag, the lower house of parliament, recently co-sponsored legislation that would lift Germany's ban on marijuana and regulate the drug like alcohol and tobacco - and, supporters say, bring in billions more marks in tax revenue.

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13 UK: Editorial: A Good TripWed, 27 May 2015
Source:Independent (UK)          Area:United Kingdom Lines:44 Added:05/28/2015

Psychedelic Drugs May Have a Role in Medical Treatment

On balance, you would not be in your right mind, as the saying goes, to voluntarily take psychedelic drugs. Though the long-term physical and psychological effects of LSD are sometimes exaggerated in the public mind, a bad "trip" carries risks.

In a medical context, however, psychedelic drugs may be beneficial. That, after all, is where LSD and others have their origins, before their widespread abuse and subsequent prohibition. The British Medical Journal hardly populated by ageing, addled hippies - carries an article by a leading psychiatrist suggesting that a change in the law should foster more research into a neglected arm of the pharmaceutical industry, and allow the legitimate prescription of LSD and other substances where they clearly do serve a medical purpose.

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14 US CO: Column: New Cannabis Club Opens On The West SideWed, 27 May 2015
Source:Colorado Springs Independent (CO) Author:Crawford, Bryce Area:Colorado Lines:73 Added:05/28/2015

The west side officially joined the Colorado Springs cannabis-club craze a month ago, when The Pothole (519 N. 30th St., thepotholeclub.com) opened in the old Green Earth Wellness Center spot. Owner Gabe Pieper, 36, grew up in Colorado Springs before moving to Denver, but says he's back to participate in the changing culture.

"I've been smoking and doing the marijuana thing pretty much my whole life," Pieper says, "and just took the opportunity that was in front of us to help give the people what they want, I guess, have some fun. It's kind of a dream to have a weed bar."

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15 US CT: PUB LTE: Abuse Is Bad, Drug War Is WorseTue, 26 May 2015
Source:Journal-Inquirer (Manchester, CT) Author:Sharpe, Robert Area:Connecticut Lines:45 Added:05/28/2015

This is in response to the editorial "Malloy didn't call anyone racist but drug enforcement is" (May 18).

Regarding the comments made by Gov. Dannel Malloy that upset Republican legislators: The drug war has been waged in a racist manner since its inception.

The Harrison Narcotics Act of 1914 was preceded by a wave of anti-immigrant sentiment. Opium was identified with Chinese laborers, marijuana with Mexicans, and cocaine with African-Americans.

Racial profiling continues to be the norm, despite similar rates of drug use for minorities and whites. Support for the drug war would end overnight if whites were incarcerated for drugs at the same rate as minorities.

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16 CN ON: Family Man Became 'Poster Child for Heroin Addiction'Wed, 27 May 2015
Source:Record, The (Kitchener, CN ON) Author:Caldwell, Brian Area:Ontario Lines:61 Added:05/28/2015

KITCHENER - Shawn Emmerson beat the odds and avoided the long arm of the law during an eight-year descent into drug addiction.

But as his habit got worse and his life continued to unravel as a result, it finally caught up to him early this year.

At the age of 44, with no prior record of any kind, Emmerson was nabbed as one of several suspects in a ring targeting coin machines in apartment building laundry rooms in Kitchener and Waterloo.

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17 CN AB: Rise In Shootings Worries PoliceWed, 27 May 2015
Source:Metro (Calgary, CN AB) Author:Brooks, Anna Area:Alberta Lines:51 Added:05/28/2015

Calgary police voiced their concerns Tuesday about rising numbers of drive-by shootings and gun violence this year in Calgary.

"I hate for people to live in fear, but it's a reality we have to address," said Quinn Jacques with the Calgary Police Service guns and gangs unit. "We're accountable. We have to find out why it's happening and take steps to deal with it."

Regardless of whether these shootings are random or targeted, Jacques said one of his biggest worries is an innocent bystander getting hit.

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18 US HI: Seminar to Focus on Marijuana Dispensaries in HawaiiThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Honolulu Star-Advertiser (HI)          Area:Hawaii Lines:47 Added:05/28/2015

A Florida-based consulting company will host a medical marijuana seminar at a Waikiki hotel next month to explain the business opportunities linked to the potential legalization of pot dispensaries in Hawaii.

Fifteen years after medical marijuana was legalized in Hawaii, the Legislature passed a bill this month approving a system of medical marijuana dispensaries statewide by next summer. Gov. David Ige is expected to sign House Bill 321 into law, and dispensaries are projected to open as early as July 2016.

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19 US WA: PUB LTE: Pot Shops Won't Hurt ChurchesThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Herald, The (Everett, WA) Author:Peterson, Kathryn Area:Washington Lines:28 Added:05/28/2015

Regarding the letter, "Keep pot shops away from churches," where author invites his readers, "what say you." Well, here's what I say: I don't have a problem with the city of Everett Planning Commission allowing legal "pot shops" next to churches. Also, believe me, I-502 is not flawed. It has been scrutinized by lawyers inside and out. What is now the legal standard is what the voters voted in favor of.

By the way, although I am not the most religious person in the world, but last I checked, the Bible said we are all God's children ... that would include those who legally own and run "pot shops." You could, for instance, invite them to church. You just never know.

Kathryn Peterson

Mountlake Terrace

[end]

20US CO: Marijuana MannersThu, 28 May 2015
Source:Denver Post (CO) Author:Shapiro, Katie Area:Colorado Lines:Excerpt Added:05/28/2015

The Great-Granddaughter of Etiquette Empress Emily Post Clears the Air on Pot

The unspoken rules of the "puff, puff, pass" ritual - including all of the steps it takes to toke up - are obvious to those who already partake. But for those just now starting to explore the world of cannabis, there's a lot to learn.

The etiquette surrounding marijuana use has long been in play, even from traditional experts on manners. The Emily Post Institute was talking about how a host should handle marijuana as early as 1982. The "Party Preparations" section of "The Complete Book of Entertaining from The Emily Post Institute" explained:

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21 US WA: Column: Checking Your White PrivilegeWed, 27 May 2015
Source:Seattle Weekly (WA) Author:Stusser, Michael A. Area:Washington Lines:113 Added:05/28/2015

How Drug Laws Don't Affect Everyone Equally.

It's good to be white.

For example, as a white guy, I'm statistically more likely to be selling drugs than an African-American man (I've always been too scared of going to jail to actually sell pot, but I'm using this to make my point.) If I were black, however, it would be three times more likely that I'd be arrested for dealing. It gets even better for whitey. Though five times as many of us use drugs, African-Americans are sent to prison 10 times as often for the same crimes. And once ya get to jail? On average, African-Americans serve as much time in prisons for drug offenses (58 months) as white folks do for violent ones (62 months).

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22 US MI: Column: The Control GroupWed, 27 May 2015
Source:Metro Times (Detroit, MI) Author:Gabriel, Larry Area:Michigan Lines:113 Added:05/28/2015

Those who say that medical marijuana is a steppingstone to recreational marijuana are correct - although generally for the wrong reasons. However, in the rush to recreational here in Michigan and elsewhere, it would be a huge mistake to discount medical use and the needs of patients.

People outside of the marijuana movement tend to see the pro-marijuana crowd as a bunch of stoners wanting to get high - even the medical users. There are some people who are using medical marijuana with a wink and a nod as cover to get high. But I've also talked to numerous folks who would either be dead or have a significantly lower quality of life without it. People tell me they are successfully treating cancer and managing the symptoms of epilepsy with marijuana extracts. Others are using it to control pain and to kick addictions to painkillers that no longer work for them. People with multiple sclerosis and diabetes are finding that it enhances their quality of life.

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23 US CA: Supporters Of Vasquez Recall To Try AgainWed, 27 May 2015
Source:Appeal-Democrat (Marysville, CA) Author:Vodden, Eric Area:California Lines:56 Added:05/27/2015

Supporters have until next week to resubmit a sample petition to Yuba County election officials before they can start collecting signatures in an attempt to recall Supervisor Andy Vasquez.

Vasquez opponents late last week submitted sample petitions and proof of publication of a legal ad to try and recall Vasquez. An election official said it was sent back to recall proponents to make corrections, a common practice in a process with strict requirements.

Opponents have until Monday to resubmit the petitions, and election officials have another 10 days to review them before signatures can start being collected. To force a recall election, signatures of 25 percent of the registered voters in the 1st District or 1,069 of 4,274 voters must be gathered within 60 days.

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24 US WA: Mayor's Plan Would Give Seattle Power to Regulate PotWed, 27 May 2015
Source:Seattle Times (WA) Author:Bush, Evan Area:Washington Lines:188 Added:05/27/2015

As State Combines Medical, Recreational Systems

License Limits Could Shut More Than 50 Medical Operations

Mayor Ed Murray on Tuesday proposed legislation that could shut down more than 50 medical-marijuana dispensaries and give the city a tighter grip on the rest of Seattle's pot industry.

The plan would create a new business license specific to the marijuana industry and create priorities for enforcement against medical-marijuana businesses.

The mayor's plan follows state lawmakers' effort to fold medical marijuana into the state's recreational system. The new state law, approved last month, calls for the Liquor Control Board (which will be renamed the Liquor and Cannabis Board) to assess the merit of medical-marijuana businesses and license those that qualify by July 2016.

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25 US WA: State Liquor Board to Get New Name, More Pot ControlTue, 26 May 2015
Source:Seattle Times (WA)          Area:Washington Lines:76 Added:05/27/2015

Medical-Marijuana Licenses for Shops, Growers

Lottery Unlikely

OLYMPIA (AP) - Big changes are coming to the state Liquor Control Board, including a name change.

The same law that will change the name July 24 to the "Liquor and Cannabis Board" also directed the agency to decide which unlicensed medical-marijuana shops and grow operations to legitimize by July 1, 2016.

The process will involve a merit system, The Olympian reported.

The agency assumes 825 unlicensed medical shops will apply for a license and that half will receive one.

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26 US AZ: PUB LTE: The Two-Bit Drug Dealer Wishes He Could GetTue, 26 May 2015
Source:Arizona Republic (Phoenix, AZ) Author:Sampson, Ron Area:Arizona Lines:29 Added:05/27/2015

Let's see if I have this right. James Reynold, Sr. and his group of Cancer Charity fund-raisers collect and misappropriate several hundred million dollars in the name of charity. They get to settle a $65.6 million judgment and have their record wiped clean for a $75,000 cash payment and no time served.

I have also noticed that if you happen to have the wrong color skin and sell an ounce or more of drugs you can expect 5-10 years or more in prison and a felony conviction that follows you the rest of your life.

I guess those druggies just don't know who to make political contributions to. Ain't justice grand!

- - Ron Sampson

Sun Lakes

[end]

27 US: Bill Would Let VA Recommend Medical PotTue, 26 May 2015
Source:Washington Post (DC) Author:Thibodeaux, Emily Wax- Area:United States Lines:58 Added:05/27/2015

Veterans suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder and other chronic pain issues may be able to ask their VA doctors for a new treatment soon: medical marijuana.

Last week, the Senate Appropriations Committee voted to back the Veterans Equal Access Amendment. Under the measure, Veterans Affairs would be allowed to recommend medical marijuana to patients for everything from back pain to depression to flashbacks.

Veterans who support the proposal say that it is safer and helps more than the addictive and debilitating painkillers that are often prescribed. They say using medical cannabis can help combat PTSD's insomnia and panic attacks.

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28 US NY: Editorial: Latin America Rethinks Drug PoliciesTue, 26 May 2015
Source:New York Times (NY)          Area:New York Lines:79 Added:05/27/2015

During the 1980s and 1990s, as the United States battled the scourge of cocaine throughout the hemisphere, Washington did most of the talking. Latin American governments were forced to listen and fall in line. The American government had the most money to throw at the problem, the toughest justice system and the biggest bully pulpit.

In recent years, that top-bottom approach has been upended as countries in the region have begun to develop new strategies to fight drug trafficking and discourage the use of narcotics. The initiatives that are being discussed and applied represent a welcome break with the largely failed traditional approach, which has emphasized prohibition and punishment. A special United Nations General Assembly meeting next April on drug policy has provided an added incentive to develop fresh approaches to the problem, including sentencing reforms and legalization.

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29US CA: Column: Failure to Collect Cannabis Tax Is the RealTue, 26 May 2015
Source:San Diego Union Tribune (CA) Author:Greenhut, Steven Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:05/27/2015

Sacramento - California authorities are notoriously creative when it comes to wringing as much tax revenue as possible out of the state's businesses, yet they are leaving money on the table because of their failure to come up with a simple way for medical-marijuana dispensaries to pay their tab.

Voters legalized this business 19 years ago with the passage of Proposition 215. But an uncertain federal legal status has complicated the matter since then. The state only collects a small percentage of the sales-and-use taxes these businesses owe, although a new program is attempting to address the imbalance.

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30 Australia: PUB LTE: Government Wasting Money on War on DrugsTue, 26 May 2015
Source:Queensland Times, The (Australia) Author:Brown, Frank Area:Australia Lines:38 Added:05/27/2015

THE excuse wowsers use to get governments to waste billions of dollars on the prohibition of recreational drugs is that drugs kill users.

That argument has no validity in a world where governments are slaughtering thousands a year as punishment for drug trafficking.

The recent executions of Sukumaran and Chan by the Indonesians are only the tip of the iceberg. Around the world, thousands are killed every year.

The fact of the matter is, the cure is worse than the disease.

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31 US FL: OPED: How Middle America Police Turned into SoldiersTue, 26 May 2015
Source:Palm Beach Post, The (FL) Author:Coyne, Christopher J. Area:Florida Lines:110 Added:05/27/2015

We've all seen videos of Third World "police" in combat gear putting down demonstrations by physically assaulting protesters, turning heavy equipment and tear gas on them, or shooting into crowds. That's what makes the recent events in Baltimore all the more disturbing. This time the "peace officers" in military combat gear, brandishing military-grade weapons and perched on armored military vehicles, were ours.

No one knows what the Baltimore protests will look like in the coming days, though the criminal charges filed against six police officers in the homicide of Freddie Gray may have a calming effect. But the recent violence there and elsewhere has brought long-overdue attention to an important national development that had all but been ignored: the militarization of our police.

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32 US NJ: NJ Weedman Opens Restaurant, Sanctuary Across theTue, 26 May 2015
Source:Trentonian, The (NJ) Author:Ray, Penny Area:New Jersey Lines:94 Added:05/27/2015

TRENTON - Marijuana activist and Trentonian columnist Ed Forchion has leased two adjoining East State Street properties and will soon open a restaurant and spiritual sanctuary.

"I'm obviously catering to the cannabis consuming community in the area, but I also I want to tap into the artsy crowd here in Trenton," Forchion said.

The properties, located directly across the street from City Hall, will be named NJ Weedman's Joint and Liberty Bell Temple III. The business is scheduled to open June 15, but on Monday afternoon about a dozen people were gathered at the restaurant as a chef cooked turkey burgers and Forchion explained his vision. The restaurant portion of the business will open at 6 a.m. on weekdays and serve affordable, healthy food, Forchion said. The menu will not offer any pork or beef, and will feature items such as sushi, pasta, fish, chicken, roasted vegetable platters, healthy soups, fruit platters, fresh sandwich wraps and more. There will also be a vegetarian menu, Forchion said, and the restaurant will offer natural energy drinks such as fruit smoothies, breakfast shakes and blended juices.

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33 CN ON: Column: Learning Some New TricksSat, 23 May 2015
Source:Intelligencer, The (CN ON) Author:Slotek, Jim Area:Ontario Lines:99 Added:05/26/2015

On the occasion of Tommy Chong and his dog Otis' birthday, our own Jim Slotek wishes a couple of old dogs good tidings

On Sunday, May 24, a hero of my misspent youth, Tommy Chong of Cheech & Chong, will be 77 years old. Coincidentally, on the same day, my dog Otis will turn 12, about 77 in dog years.

And I have a story that connects them both.

Scenario 1: Otis is a wheaten terrier, emphasis on terrier. In his youth, he was a championship-calibre Frisbee dog. He was also a decent fielder in baseball - which is to say, when my boys and I would play pitch 'n' hit in the field, he'd eagerly wait for a hit ball to get by, race to get it and happily bring it back to the pitcher (me). A TTC employee once watched us and said, "You guys suck, but I'd sign the dog."

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34 US OH: LTE: Why Haven't Experts Weighed In On Legal Pot?Mon, 25 May 2015
Source:Columbus Dispatch (OH) Author:Kline, Wilbur Area:Ohio Lines:30 Added:05/26/2015

Where is the surgeon general? Where are the physicians? Even the American Medical Association has softened its stance. All have intimate knowledge of the debilitating effect marijuana has on the central nervous system, yet they remain silent when attempts are made by state legislatures to legalize a substance known to have a long-lasting impact on society.

If it becomes legal for adults, the more vulnerable youngsters will, in all likelihood, feel free to give it a try, and many who do so will find that this experiment will lead to trying hard drugs.

Isn't it time for those who know better to step up and represent the current and future victims?

Westerville

[end]

35 US FL: Police in Florida Grapple With a Cheap and DangerousMon, 25 May 2015
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Robles, Frances Area:Florida Lines:134 Added:05/26/2015

MIAMI - A hazardous new synthetic drug originating in China is being blamed for 18 recent deaths in a single South Florida county, as police grapple with an inexpensive narcotic that causes exaggerated strength and dangerous paranoid hallucinations.

On Thursday, the Fort Lauderdale police killed a man, reportedly high on the man-made street drug, alpha-PVP, known more commonly as flakka, who had held a woman hostage with a knife to her throat.

The shooting of Javoris Washington, 29, was the latest in a series of volatile episodes that the police in South Florida have faced with highly aggressive drug users. Law enforcement agencies have had difficulty tamping down a surge in synthetic drugs, which were banned after becoming popular in clubs five years ago only to re-emerge deadlier than ever under new formulations. As soon as legislation catches up with the latest craze, manufacturers design a new drug to take its place, federal and local law enforcement agencies say.

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36US WI: Column: Shameful Choice For VeteranMon, 25 May 2015
Source:Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (WI) Author:Pitts, Leonard Jr. Area:Wisconsin Lines:Excerpt Added:05/26/2015

Before he tried marijuana, he thought of trying suicide. Heavy drinking hadn't helped. Nor had various pills prescribed by Veterans Affairs doctors. He was still angry, still depressed, still could not sleep.

But he found that marijuana helped. It took the anger and depression away. It took the sleeplessness away. Most of all, it took the 11-year-old boy away.

PFC Jared Hunter never knew the boy's name. He was just some Iraqi kid who liked to hang around the Army base outside Baghdad. "He didn't really speak English or nothing. He would just kind of follow us around and would point things out or tell us if there was somebody there who shouldn't have been." The soldiers adopted him as a mascot. Hunter bought him a soccer ball.

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37 CN ON: Column: A Dispatch From The Field Of Harm ReductionMon, 25 May 2015
Source:Toronto Star (CN ON) Author:Fiorito, Joe Area:Ontario Lines:93 Added:05/26/2015

Recently I chewed khat, a leaf with properties conducive to sociability; and on a couple of occasions I ate cannabis chocolate.

I neither brag nor complain, I merely think we ought to normalize khat, find a reliable way to measure the potency of cannabis, in any and all forms, so that those who use it can make informed judgments.

As you might guess from the above, I am also a supporter of harm reduction, and so I went to an information meeting awhile back to learn a little bit about the problems of drug overdose.

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38 CN ON: Cops To Send MessageSat, 23 May 2015
Source:Toronto Sun (CN ON) Author:Davidson, Terry Area:Ontario Lines:66 Added:05/26/2015

Will Work With Courier Firms to Help Halt Drug Shipments

Toronto Police will soon be approaching courier companies in efforts to address a "concerning trend" around the growing quantities of illegal drugs being shipped through commercial transport providers.

Officers with Toronto's Police drug squad made the announcement to members of the media Friday, days after making a major drug bust at the west-end shipping depot of a national courier company.

Five kilos of cocaine and a kilo of Ketamine with a combined street value of $550,000, were seized, as well as $175,000 in cash they believe was made through drug dealing.

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39 CN ON: Zero Tolerance PetitionFri, 22 May 2015
Source:Kenora Daily Miner And News (CN ON) Author:McGuckin, Amber Area:Ontario Lines:68 Added:05/26/2015

Whitefish Bay First Nation Votes to Warn Bootleggers and Drug Dealers

Whitefish Bay First Nation members voted to send a warning to alleged bootleggers and drug dealers in the community on Wednesday night.

The First Nation held a band meeting and voted to kick a non-band First Nation member out of the community and create mandatory drug testing for chief and council to show the younger people in the community their leaders are drug-free.

Darrell Mandamin helped start a community petition to say people have had enough with the crime in the community. As of Thursday, the petition had 164 signatures.

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40 US CT: Column: Baiting Republicans Over Drugs, Malloy ShoresMon, 25 May 2015
Source:Journal-Inquirer (Manchester, CT) Author:Powell, Chris Area:Connecticut Lines:86 Added:05/26/2015

Republican state legislators want an apology from Governor Malloy for what they construe as his accusation that they are racist for opposing repeal of the law establishing 1,500-foot "drug-free" zones around schools, whereby mere possession of drugs is made a felony nearly everywhere in cities, where most blacks and Hispanics live, but not so much in suburbs and rural towns, where most whites live. While the governor, a Democrat, was not obliged to apologize for what he didn't quite say, he might have remembered that soft words turn away wrath and expressed regret for misunderstanding. That would have facilitated repeal of the questionable drug law instead of engendering resentment of repeal.

[continues 537 words]

41 CN ON: Column: New TricksSun, 24 May 2015
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Slotek, Jim Area:Ontario Lines:102 Added:05/26/2015

On the occasion of and his dog birthday, our own Jim Slotek wishes a couple of old dogs good tidings

On Sunday, May 24, a hero of my misspent youth, Tommy Chong of Cheech & Chong, will be 77 years old. Coincidentally, on the same day, my dog Otis will turn 12, about 77 in dog years.

And I have a story that connects them both.

Scenario 1: Otis is a Wheaten Terrier, emphasis on terrier. In his youth, he was a championship-calibre Frisbee dog. He was also a decent fielder in baseball - which is to say, when my boys and I would play pitch 'n' hit in the field, he'd eagerly wait for a hit ball to get by, race to get it and happily bring it back to the pitcher (me). A TTC employee once watched us and said, "You guys suck, but I'd sign the dog."

[continues 671 words]

42 US CO: PUB LTE: Time For A New Approach On DrugsSun, 24 May 2015
Source:Daily Camera (Boulder, CO) Author:Dorsey, Kika Area:Colorado Lines:49 Added:05/26/2015

The recent article, "Increase in Heroin use, Deaths" (Daily Camera, May 19) is about the increased deaths from heroin overdoses due to bad heroin being sold on the streets. This comes in the wake of the arrest of a suspected drug dealer. Statistics show that the more we criminalize drugs, the more people die of overdoses from bad street drugs and the more homicides occur. Obviously, the drug war is not working. We should have learned that already with prohibition.

The United States has 2.2 million people in prisons and jails, a 500 percent increase in the last three decades. There are more people incarcerated in the United States per capita than in any country in the world. Forty-eight percent of those incarcerated are in for drug offenses.

[continues 183 words]

43US CA: Column: From Gateway Drug To VA MedicineMon, 25 May 2015
Source:San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Author:Saunders, Debra J. Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:05/25/2015

The Senate Appropriations Committee did something last week the Senate has never done - it passed a marijuana reform measure.

It was the narrowest of proposals, an amendment co-authored by Sens. Steve Daines, R-Mont., and Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., to a military spending bill that would prohibit the Department of Veterans Affairs from using federal money to prosecute doctors who recommend medical marijuana to veterans in states where the drug is legal.

Last year, the House passed five measures that supported states' rights on marijuana.

[continues 456 words]

44 US CA: PUB LTE: Time To Legalize Marijuana Is NowSat, 23 May 2015
Source:Reporter, The (Vacaville, CA) Author:Sharpe, Robert Area:California Lines:40 Added:05/25/2015

In regard to columnist Ernest Kimme's column ("No easy answers for marijuana issue," The Reporter 5-12-15), it's been almost twenty years since California voters approved medical marijuana. Restricting access at this point is a gift to Mexican drug cartels. One day marijuana will be fully legal nationwide and there will be no suburban basement grows with artificial lights and massive carbon footprints. Environmentally destructive wilderness grows will become a thing of the past.

These are vestiges of marijuana prohibition. When fully legal, legitimate farmers will produce marijuana by the ton under natural sunlight at a fraction of the current cost. It will be virtually worthless. Financial incentives drive destructive cultivation practices. Marijuana prohibition distorts supply and demand dynamics so that big money grows on little trees.

[continues 79 words]

45 US DC: Column: A Drug Cartel's Power In VenezuelaMon, 25 May 2015
Source:Washington Post (DC) Author:Diehl, Jackson Area:District of Columbia Lines:111 Added:05/25/2015

Venezuela is afflicted with the world's highest inflation, its second highest murder rate and crippling shortages of food, medicine and basic consumer goods.

Its authoritarian government is holding some 70 political prisoners, including the mayor of Caracas and senior opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez, and stands accused by human rights groups of illegal detentions, torture and repression of independent media.

All of that is now pretty well known, and it is finally beginning to gain some attention from Latin American leaders who for years did their best to appease or ignore Hugo Chavez and his "Bolivarian Revolution." What's less understood is the complicating factor that will make any political change or economic reconstruction in this failing state far more difficult: The Chavez regime, headed since his demise by Nicolas Maduro, harbors not just a clique of crackpot socialists, but also one of the world's biggest drug cartels.

[continues 651 words]

46 US WA: Column: Veteran A Victim Of War On DrugsMon, 25 May 2015
Source:Spokesman-Review (Spokane, WA) Author:Pitts, Leonard Jr. Area:Washington Lines:88 Added:05/25/2015

Before he tried marijuana, he thought of trying suicide.

Heavy drinking hadn't helped. Nor had various pills prescribed by Veterans Affairs doctors. He was still angry, still depressed, still could not sleep.

But he found that marijuana helped. It took the anger and depression away. It took the sleeplessness away. Most of all, it took the 11-year-old boy away.

Pfc. Jared Hunter never knew the boy's name. He was just some Iraqi kid who liked to hang around the Army base outside Baghdad. "He didn't really speak English or nothing. He would just kind of follow us around and would point things out or tell us if there was somebody there who shouldn't have been." The soldiers adopted him as a mascot. Hunter bought him a soccer ball.

[continues 560 words]

47 US CO: PUB LTE: Plant The Seeds Of ResearchMon, 25 May 2015
Source:Pueblo Chieftain (CO) Author:Roybal, Jimmy Newmoon Area:Colorado Lines:53 Added:05/25/2015

PEDCO's request not to use the half-cent sales tax for marijuana businesses is nearly the most anti-business, anti-development stance that they can take.

Marijuana businesses are not just about retail outlets for recreational use. The long-term money is in marijuana research and the establishment of a nascent and niche pharmaceutical industry.

Marijuana consumerism has a limited growth horizon, because as other states legalize our competitive advantage is lost. However, our competitive advantage to create a research-based pharmaceutical business around marijuana is slipping away every second.

[continues 201 words]

48 US NY: OPED: How To Lock Up Fewer PeopleSun, 24 May 2015
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Mauer, Marc Area:New York Lines:139 Added:05/25/2015

WHEN Hillary Rodham Clinton, Ted Cruz, Eric H. Holder Jr., Jeb Bush, George Soros, Marco Rubio and Charles G. Koch all agree that we must end mass incarceration, it is clear that times have changed. Not long ago, most politicians believed the only tenable stance on crime was to be tougher than the next guy.

Today, nearly everyone acknowledges that our criminal justice system needs fixing, and politicians across the spectrum call for reducing prison sentences for low-level drug crimes and other nonviolent offenses. But this consensus glosses over the real challenges to ending mass incarceration. Even if we released everyone imprisoned for drugs tomorrow, the United States would still have 1.7 million people behind bars, and an incarceration rate four times that of many Western European nations.

[continues 1024 words]

49 CN ON: Column: Learning Some New TricksSat, 23 May 2015
Source:Peterborough Examiner, The (CN ON) Author:Slotek, Jim Area:Ontario Lines:99 Added:05/25/2015

On the Occasion of Tommy Chong and His Dog Otis' Birthday, Our Own Jim Slotek Wishes a Couple of Old Dogs Good Tidings

On Sunday, May 24, a hero of my misspent youth, Tommy Chong of Cheech & Chong, will be 77 years old. Coincidentally, on the same day, my dog Otis will turn 12, about 77 in dog years.

And I have a story that connects them both.

Scenario 1: Otis is a wheaten terrier, emphasis on terrier. In his youth, he was a championship-calibre Frisbee dog. He was also a decent fielder in baseball - which is to say, when my boys and I would play pitch 'n' hit in the field, he'd eagerly wait for a hit ball to get by, race to get it and happily bring it back to the pitcher (me). A TTC employee once watched us and said, "You guys suck, but I'd sign the dog."

[continues 671 words]

50 CN ON: Column: Learning Some New TricksSat, 23 May 2015
Source:Observer, The (CN ON) Author:Slotek, Jim Area:Ontario Lines:99 Added:05/25/2015

On the occasion of Tommy Chong and his dog Otis' birthday, our own Jim Slotek wishes a couple of old dogs good tidings

On Sunday, May 24, a hero of my misspent youth, Tommy Chong of Cheech & Chong, will be 77 years old. Coincidentally, on the same day, my dog Otis will turn 12, about 77 in dog years.

And I have a story that connects them both.

Scenario 1: Otis is a wheaten terrier, emphasis on terrier. In his youth, he was a championship-calibre Frisbee dog. He was also a decent fielder in baseball - which is to say, when my boys and I would play pitch 'n' hit in the field, he'd eagerly wait for a hit ball to get by, race to get it and happily bring it back to the pitcher (me). A TTC employee once watched us and said, "You guys suck, but I'd sign the dog."

[continues 671 words]


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