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1US LA: Guns Or Marijuana? Some Patients Will Have To Make The ChoiceFri, 27 Jul 2018
Source:Times-Picayune, The (New Orleans, LA) Author:Clark, Maria Area:Louisiana Lines:Excerpt Added:07/31/2018

As Louisiana's medical marijuana program takes shape some patients might have to make a difficult choice: keep their gun ownership rights or participate in the program.

Louisiana is one of 30 states that have approved medical marijuana laws in some form. Although the state's nine dispensaries won't open until later this year, patients who qualify for medical marijuana under Louisiana law may be surprised to learn that federal law restricts their ability to purchase a gun if they use marijuana.

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2 US Editorial: Only Congress Can Keep Jeff Sessions' Reefer Madness InFri, 27 Jul 2018
Source:Baltimore Sun (MD)                 Lines:81 Added:07/31/2018

Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions' decision to withdraw an Obama-era directive discouraging the enforcement of federal marijuana laws in states that have legalized pot shouldn't surprise anyone familiar with Sessions' views on drug laws.

The attorney general has every right to enforce federal drug laws as vigorously as he sees fit. But just because he can doesn't mean he should. The truth is that resuming the discredited war on marijuana would be neither a smart step nor welcome policy, and just the threat of it is a reminder of the shortsightedness of the federal government's approach to drugs.

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3 US: Editorial: Repeal Prohibition, AgainFri, 27 Jul 2018
Source:New York Times (NY)          Area:United States Lines:75 Added:07/28/2018

The federal government should follow the growing movement in the states and repeal the ban on marijuana for both medical and recreational use.

It took 13 years for the United States to come to its senses and end Prohibition, 13 years in which people kept drinking, otherwise law-abiding citizens became criminals and crime syndicates arose and flourished. It has been more than 40 years since Congress passed the current ban on marijuana, inflictingA great harm on society just to prohibit a substance far less dangerous than alcohol.

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4 US: Public Faith In Marijuana Outpaces Medical Research, Study FindsWed, 25 Jul 2018
Source:Philadelphia Daily News (PA) Author:Haydon, Ian Area:United States Lines:119 Added:07/25/2018

Despite limited evidence, Americans have an increasingly positive view of the health benefits of marijuana. Nearly two-thirds believe pot can reduce pain, while close to half say it improves symptoms of anxiety, depression, epilepsy, and multiple sclerosis, according to a new online survey of 9,003 adults.

Pennsylvania and New Jersey are among the 30 states, along with the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico, that have legalized medical marijuana. But scientists say hard data on the health effects of pot -- both positive and negative -- are largely missing. Because marijuana is considered an illicit drug by the federal government, research has been scant, though there are efforts underway in Pennsylvania and nationally to remedy that.

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5 US NJ: Editorial: Like Jersey City, Murphy's AG Takes The High GroundWed, 25 Jul 2018
Source:Bridgeton News (NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:81 Added:07/25/2018

Jersey City's mayor is planting himself at the forefront of a national movement to stop destroying people's lives for having a little marijuana.

Steven Fulop is firmly on the right side of this issue, and Gov. Phil Murphy's attorney general, Gurbir Grewal, is not fighting him on it -- once again demonstrating that he is not just concerned with law and order, but justice.

Grewal has been receptive to reform efforts in general, creating a statewide team to investigate wrongful convictions, for instance, after a bungled murder case in Passaic County.

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6 US NJ: Report: New Jersey Puts Temporary Hold On Marijuana CasesTue, 24 Jul 2018
Source:Morning Call (Allentown, PA) Author:Shipkowski, Bruce Area:New Jersey Lines:60 Added:07/24/2018

New Jersey's attorney general has announced an immediate adjournment of all marijuana cases in municipal courts statewide until at least September.

The decision was included in a letter state Attorney General Gurbir Grewal sent Tuesday to municipal prosecutors in the state. It asked them to seek an adjournment until September 4 -- or later -- of any matter "involving a marijuana-related offense pending in municipal court," a move that will allow the attorney general's office time to develop "appropriate guidance" for prosecutors.

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7 US: Marijuana Bills Increasingly Focus On Social JusticeThu, 19 Jul 2018
Source:Philadelphia Daily News (PA) Author:Quinton, Sophie Area:United States Lines:207 Added:07/19/2018

State lawmakers and advocates pushing to legalize marijuana this year aren't just touting legalization as a way to raise tax revenue and regulate an underground pot market. They're also talking about fixing a broken criminal justice system and reinvesting in poor and minority communities that have been battered by decades of the government's war on drugs.

The focus on justice and equity has sharpened over time, longtime pot advocates say, as it's become clear that such issues should be addressed and that doing so won't alienate voters -- most of whom, polls consistently show, support legal marijuana. Civil rights groups also have raised their voices in legalization discussions.

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8 US MA: What To Know About Recreational Marijuana Sales InThu, 05 Jul 2018
Source:Hartford Courant (CT) Author:Ormseth, Matthew Area:Massachusetts Lines:190 Added:07/10/2018

July 1, a fated day in Massachusetts for advocates of recreational marijuana, came and went. The first day that stores were allowed to sell nonmedical cannabis passed without so much as a joint sold. No retailers had been licensed, and July 1 turned out much like any other day since December 15, 2016, when it became legal in Massachusetts to possess, grow and give away small quantities of cannabis.

But in the intervening year-and-a-half, no retailers have begun selling the drug. Advocates of its recreational use have grown frustrated at the retail rollout's plodding pace.

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9 US CA: Illegal Marijuana Market Still Thrives In Los AngelesThu, 05 Jul 2018
Source:Honolulu Star-Advertiser (HI)          Area:California Lines:142 Added:07/05/2018

LOS ANGELES - A slight marijuana smell wafted out as a steady stream of customers walked into a warehouse, its doors and windows covered by bars.

Suddenly, police swooped in.

"Sheriff's department! Search warrant!" a Los Angeles County deputy shouted as the team thundered through the front door and began hauling out people in handcuffs.

The Compton 20 Cap Collective just south of Los Angeles that was raided earlier this spring is one of hundreds of illegal marijuana stores operating in LA County, where marijuana is legal for anyone 21 and over and retailers must be licensed to sell to them.

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10 US: Neighbors Flinch At Pot ShopsThu, 05 Jul 2018
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Prevost, Lisa Area:United States Lines:162 Added:07/05/2018

Finding a place to house a medical marijuana dispensary is rarely an easy task, but MariMed Advisors, which specializes in developing cannabis businesses, encountered especially aggressive pushback working for a client in Annapolis, Md., last year.

The company reviewed several hundred potential locations for the client's proposed dispensary before finally finding one that met nearly every one of the strict requirements demanded by officials of Anne Arundel County. It had the proper zoning classification and the necessary road access. It was not within 1,000 feet of a school. And, as an added plus, the storefront was discreet, located below ground level and behind another building.

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11 US FL: Smokable Medical Pot Case Stays On HoldTue, 03 Jul 2018
Source:Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, FL) Author:Kam, Dara Area:Florida Lines:79 Added:07/03/2018

TALLAHASSEE -- Chiding a judge who sided with sick patients and saying plaintiffs likely won't win on the merits of the case, an appellate court on Tuesday refused to allow smokable medical marijuana while a legal fight continues to play out.

The ruling by a three-judge panel of the 1st District Court of Appeal came in a lawsuit initiated by Orlando trial attorney John Morgan and others who maintain that a Florida law barring patients from smoking their treatment runs afoul of a 2016 constitutional amendment that broadly legalized medical marijuana.

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12 US OK: Oklahoma Medical Pot Question Hinges On Conservative SupportSat, 23 Jun 2018
Source:Honolulu Star-Advertiser (HI)          Area:Oklahoma Lines:109 Added:06/27/2018

LINDSAY, Okla - Danny Daniels, an evangelical Christian in the rural Oklahoma town of Lindsay, is reliably conservative on just about every political issue.

The 45-year-old church pastor is anti-abortion, voted for President Donald Trump and is a member of the National Rifle Association who owns an AR-15 rifle. He also came of age during the 1980s and believed in the anti-drug mantra that labeled marijuana as a dangerous gateway drug.

But his view on marijuana changed as his pastoral work extended into hospice care and he saw patients at the end of their lives benefiting from the use of cannabis.

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13 US: Medical Milestone: U.S. OKs Marijuana-Based Drug For SeizuresMon, 25 Jun 2018
Source:Hartford Courant (CT) Author:Perrone, Matthew Area:United States Lines:148 Added:06/27/2018

U.S. health regulators on Monday approved the first prescription drug made from marijuana, a milestone that could spur more research into a drug that remains illegal under federal law, despite growing legalization for recreational and medical use.

The Food and Drug Administration approved the medication, called Epidiolex, to treat two rare forms of epilepsy that begin in childhood. But it's not quite medical marijuana.

The strawberry-flavored syrup is a purified form of a chemical ingredient found in the cannabis plant -- but not the one that gets users high. It's not yet clear why the ingredient, called cannabidiol, or CBD, reduces seizures in some people with epilepsy.

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14 Canada: LTE: Canada's Cannabis TripMon, 25 Jun 2018
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Best, Peter Area:Canada Lines:26 Added:06/27/2018

The legalization of marijuana for general consumption is a devastating, immoral attack by the Trudeau government against the best interests of all of Canada'€™s vulnerable and marginalized citizens, especially our young people, who are ill-equipped to handle it (What A Long Strange Trip It Will Been, editorial, June 21).

Surviving in modern society demands vigilance, sobriety, discipline and competence on all fronts. Marijuana use discourages these necessary virtues. There should have been a national referendum before this profound decision was made. There are no adults in charge any more.

Peter Best, Sudbury, Ont.

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15Canada: Cannabis Dispensaries Get Real Oct. 17, 2018 MunicipalFri, 22 Jun 2018
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:Meissner, Dirk Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:06/27/2018

VICTORIA - On the day Canadians can legally buy and use recreational marijuana, the clock will start ticking for cannabis dispensaries already open across the country, say politicians and pot industry insiders.

On Oct. 17, provincial licensing, monitoring and approval regulations on legal marijuana retail standards will become law and the cannabis business will get real for marijuana shops currently operating outside the rules.

"These are the same people who cried for legalization," said Vancouver Coun. Kerry Jang. "Now they've got it, and they have to play by the rules."

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16Canada: Oped: This Is Who We Are, UnfortunatelyFri, 22 Jun 2018
Source:Vancouver Sun (CN BC) Author:White, Calvin Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:06/27/2018

Seldom a day goes by when financial pages don't highlight new developments in the marijuana industry.

So, this is who we are today. Former B.C. Health Minister Terry Lake is now on the corporate board of a major marijuana company. Former Toronto police chief and current MP Bill Blair is a point man on marijuana legalization. Former B.C. Solicitor General and West Vancouver Police Chief Kash Heed is a consultant for marijuana companies. The list of government and policing honchos who have jumped on the bandwagon is substantial.

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17Canada: Editorial: Politicians Still Think You're Too IrresponsibleFri, 22 Jun 2018
Source:National Post (Canada)          Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:06/27/2018

They might be reluctantly legalizing cannabis. But they'll never stop thinking they know better than us how we should live

The Canadian government announced this week that marijuana would be legal for recreational in just under four months, by Oct. 17, 2018. The intervening time will be used to get legal distribution networks established and give provinces and police forces time to prepare for the transition.

And, the government probably hopes, for Canadians to decide they're not so into this marijuana stuff, after all.

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18Canada: Feds To Make It 'Fair' For Those With Criminal Records ForSun, 24 Jun 2018
Source:Victoria Times-Colonist (CN BC)          Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:06/27/2018

OTTAWA - Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale says the government will look at ways to make things fair for those who have criminal records for marijuana possession after legalization comes into force.

Goodale says the question of pardoning individuals with criminal records for possessing marijuana is legitimate and one the government will pursue once the law takes effect. article continues below Trending Stories Death of Comox Valley teen traced to toxic shock syndrome Metal table smashed on head of officer confronting intruder More people in capital travelling by bus, bike and on foot School board backs $73M option to save Vic High exterior

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19CN BC: Cost Of Substance Use In Canada Tops $38 Billion, With BoozeTue, 26 Jun 2018
Source:Victoria Times-Colonist (CN BC)          Area:British Columbia Lines:Excerpt Added:06/27/2018

VICTORIA - The economic cost of substance use in Canada in 2014 was $38.4 billion, or about $1,100 for every Canadian, says a report released Tuesday.

The Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction partnered with the Canadian Institute for Substance Use Research to examine the data and estimate the harms of substance use based on health, justice, lost productivity and other costs. article continues below Trending Stories Death of Comox Valley teen traced to toxic shock syndrome Metal table smashed on head of officer confronting intruder More people in capital travelling by bus, bike and on foot School board backs $73M option to save Vic High exterior

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20 Canada: Ahead Of Legalization, Doctors Warn Pregnant Women OfMon, 25 Jun 2018
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Weeks, Carly Area:Canada Lines:62 Added:06/27/2018

With the legalization of cannabis only a few months away, one of Canadaa€™s top medical organizations is warning women about the risks the drug poses if used during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

According to the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada, marijuana use can lead to preterm birth and low birth weight, as well as lower IQ and hyperactivity after a child is born.

a€œWe want to make sure women understand just because ita€™s legal doesna€™t mean ita€™s safe,a€ said Jocelynn Cook, chief scientific officer with the SOGC. a€œThe science does suggest there are effects on pregnancy and on fetal development.a€

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