Tag Archives: Marijuana

police-state-california

POLICE AND THE DA SHOULD TRY LISTENING TO THE VOTERS FOR A CHANGE

POLICE AND THE DA SHOULD TRY LISTENING TO THE VOTERS FOR A CHANGE.

April 19, 2014

police-state-california

When Massachusetts voters passed a ballot initiative decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana last Election Day, their message was clear: Yes, marijuana should still be illegal, but the penalties for small marijuana infractions are much too harsh.

It should have come as no surprise how easily the proposal to make adult possession of an ounce of marijuana a civil violation punishable by a $100 fine rather than a criminal violation passed.

Voters understood that harsher penalties for small marijuana violations do not result in lower marijuana use rates or lower crime rates in any way. They knew that 11 other states had already established policies decriminalizing marijuana – most in place for decades – with no more marijuana-related problems than neighboring states that arrest such users.

Their sensible assumptions were affirmed by a 2008 World Health Organization report concluding that while the United States has among the toughest marijuana laws on either side of the Atlantic, we have by far the highest marijuana use rates. In fact, our marijuana use rates are double what they are in the Netherlands, where the sale and adult possession of marijuana are legally tolerated.

The only thing arresting smalltime marijuana violators accomplished was wasting tax dollars – about $29 million a year in Massachusetts, by Harvard economist Dr. Jeffrey Miron’s calculations. Oh, that and saddling ordinary citizens, young people and minorities in particular, with arrest records that could follow them their entire lives.

So, despite the way it was portrayed in much of the press, Nov. 4′s vote wasn’t a referendum on whether marijuana should be legal. It wasn’t a referendum on whether marijuana use should be tolerated, much less encouraged. And it certainly wasn’t a referendum on state law enforcement’s competence or fairness in enforcing existing marijuana laws.

That is, until Massachusetts’ law enforcement leadership turned it into one. In what was either a stunning public relations miscalculation or a profound misunderstanding of the proposal, Bay State police chiefs and district attorneys decided not only to oppose the measure, but also to exhaust their credibility trying to defeat it.

Their campaign was full of hyperbole and contradiction. Decriminalizing marijuana would encourage marijuana use, especially among children, they said, while ignoring the lower marijuana use rates in neighboring New York, a decriminalized state since the late ’70s. Decriminalizing would send the message that marijuana use is ok, they argued, while at the same time insisting that street cops rarely bothered with low-level marijuana users anyway. The process of fining and releasing marijuana violators would be too complicated for cops, they said, although officers apparently had no difficulty arresting, booking, trying, convicting and then fining them.

And so on. Not surprisingly, Massachusetts voters rebuffed law enforcement’s dire warnings and passed the measure with 65 percent of the vote, more than President Obama, who carried the state easily, received.

Also not surprisingly, nearly three months after the law was implemented, none of the opponents’ predictions of chaos and wanton drug abuse have come to pass.

But law enforcement leaders, having just embarrassed themselves at the polls with their “reefer madness” opposition to a modest, uncontroversial adjustment to marijuana penalties, are determined to exacerbate the damage they’ve done to their credibility. Rather than accept that the voters were right on this one, law enforcement officials are attempting to exploit a provision in the new law that allows localities to pass ordinances enhancing penalties for public marijuana use.

The provision was intended for the unlikely possibility that some communities might find that the prospect of a $100 fine and confiscation of contraband to be an inadequate deterrent to public marijuana use.

Rather than respect the will of the voters and acknowledge that the new law has in no way encouraged public marijuana use, those who originally opposed the initiative are rushing to subvert it through the public use provision. Among these opponents are Cape Cod District Attorney Michael O’Keefe and police chiefs in nine Cape towns.

While the details are sketchy right now, and the effects such proposals will have on the letter and spirit of Massachusetts’ decrim law unclear, O’Keefe and crew should learn from their recent mistakes and show some faith in their constituents’ judgment.

So far, we’ve seen more of the same nonsense from them that we saw before the law passed. You’d think to hear these officials talk that there’s an epidemic of marijuana users taking to our parks to smoke marijuana, happy to pay the existing $100 fine and lose their stash for the privilege.

Once again, these law enforcement officials are playing games. Once again, it’s up to the voters to call them on their childish nonsense.

SIGN THE PETITION FOR ALL THOSE WHO CAN'T. IT's not up to us what treatment an individual American feels works best for them and theirs! Thats Freedom!
SIGN THE PETITION FOR ALL THOSE WHO CAN’T. IT’s not up to us what treatment an individual American feels works best for them and theirs! Thats Freedom! Please click on the button and sign this important petition.

 

Article originally from: Click Here for MPP.

http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/decriminalize-marijuana-16

Petition to Decriminalize, Regulate, taxate and educate!

Please take a second and sign our petition. Just click on the sign below. Please, it’s time we take back our freedoms and our constitutional rights as Americans!

Americans are suffering because of the prohibition. The war on drugs is nothing but a miserable, horrendous, human right’s violation, that has endured 40 years! We are now the land of the incarcerated and under-educated! Our innovators, scientists, laborers…all endangered in this once great, FREE, country.

Please sign below after the quotes from Americans that have signed the petition. I have left their names off to protect their identity.

1.“My son has crohn’s and desperately needs this!”

2.As a fellow Crohns sufferer this hits home. This could help so many people with this and so many other serious illnesses. Make this happen, we all know it’s the right thing to do, for humanity and for your soul.”

SIGN THE PETITION FOR ALL THOSE WHO CAN'T. IT's not up to us what treatment an individual American feels works best for them and theirs! Thats Freedom!
SIGN THE PETITION FOR ALL THOSE WHO CAN’T. IT’s not up to us what treatment an individual American feels works best for them and theirs! Thats Freedom!
Remember Prohibition it still doesn't work

Up-to-Date Cannabis News in America…The Land of Incarcerated!

Eric Holder Would Be ‘Glad To Work With Congress’ To Reschedule Marijuana

ERIC HOLDER

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration would be willing to work with Congress if lawmakers want to take marijuana off the list of what the federal government considers the most dangerous drugs, Attorney General Eric Holder said Friday.

http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/decriminalize-marijuana-16
Please click and sign our petition to decriminalize a medicinal plant, and allow patients safe access to a medicine that has been used for more than 5000 years by humans. People are SUFFERING and Dying every DAY in America because of the failed “War on Drugs”.

“We’d be more than glad to work with Congress if there is a desire to look at and reexamine how the drug is scheduled, as I said there is a great degree of expertise that exists in Congress,” Holder said during a House Appropriations Committee hearing. “It is something that ultimately Congress would have to change, and I think that our administration would be glad to work with Congress if such a proposal were made.”

Several members of Congress have called on the administration to downgrade cannabis on its own without waiting for congressional action. Under the federal Controlled Substances Act, the attorney general has the authority to “remove any drug or other substance from the schedules if he finds that the drug or other substance does not meet the requirements for inclusion in any schedule.” Holder didn’t indicate Friday that he would be willing to do that unilaterally.

Although there haven’t been any documented cases of deaths from overdosing on marijuana, the federal government treats it as a Schedule I drug with a “high potential for abuse,” along with heroin, LSD and Ecstasy.

Re-categorizing marijuana would not legalize the drug under federal law, but it couldmake research into marijuana’s medical benefits much easier and allow marijuana businesses to take tax deductions.

Several Republican lawmakers at the hearing questioned Holder’s decision to allow Colorado and Washington to legalize and regulate marijuana and to take the states’ actions into consideration when prioritizing federal marijuana prosecutions. But Holder said that he was “not sure that you’re going to see a huge difference” between the cases the Justice Department was bringing before and after guidance went out to U.S. attorneys on which cases to prioritize.

“We’re not blazing a new trail,” Holder said of the decision to prosecute only certain cases based on the department’s limited resources, noting that much of marijuana law enforcement happens on the state and local levels.

Any move to reschedule marijuana would probably face resistance from the Drug Enforcement Administration, which Holder oversees. DEA chief Michele Leonhart said this week that the growing acceptance of marijuana only makes her agents “fight harder.”

For full article click HERE.

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Half of the States in Our Nation Now Have Some Form of Medical Cannabis

Half of all the states in the U.S. now have Medical Marijuana Bills, legalizing the medicine in one form or another. These states are taking measures to provide a safe alternative to Big Pharmacy prescription pills.
Half of all the states in the U.S. now have Medical Marijuana Bills, legalizing the medicine in one form or another. These states are taking measures to provide a safe alternative to Big Pharmacy prescription medication. CLICK ON THE FLAG TO SEE WHAT HAPPENS!

In 2014 numerous states have joined the movement to legalize at least some form of medical cannabis. This of course excludes states such as Kansas, which has a government made up of extreme, right-wing, evangelical christians that will not give HB2198 and SB9 the time of day. The House and Senate have dismissed the bill for several years now, despite the overwhelming numbers of Kansans, including the Silver Hair Political group’s endorsement and polls indicating 70% of Kansans wanting the bill.

In Utah, the governor recently signed a measure legalizing low-THC cannabis oil. In Kentucky, the state’s legislature has voted unanimously to legalize cannabidiol (a compound found in cannabis); the measure is expected to be signed by the governor.

In Mississippi, the state’s House and Senate has voted to also legalize cannabis oil that’s low in THC for medical purposes. The measure awaits a response from the governor.

In Maryland, the state’s full legislature has voted to legalize medical cannabis, including dispensaries and cultivation centers.

Alabama’s Legislature has approved a measure which establishes a million dollar study on medical cannabis oil, allowing the University of Alabama to produce and distribute it to those with seizure disorders.

Although these measures don’t go far enough – the whole cannabis plant should be legalized for example, and not just cannabis oil – they’re clearly a step in the right direction. The approval of these proposals is also numerous states admitting that cannabis has medical value, demonstrating that it doesn’t fit the legal description of a Schedule 1 controlled substance.

With these states recently passing medical cannabis proposals, it makes 25 states in the U.S. – half of the entire country – that has voted to legalize some form of medical cannabis (with the others being Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington). This is a huge achievement given the first medical cannabis law was passed less than 20 years ago.

Other state legislatures, such as Florida‘s, are also currently advancing medical cannabis proposals, and numerous other states have legislation being discussed. It’s only a matter of time before medical cannabis will be legalized nation, and worldwide.

To help Kansans in their fight please read the information below.

Earlier this month, Kansas Sen. David Haley (D-Kansas City, Kansas) introduced SB 9, a bill which would allow Kansas residents with qualifying conditions to legally use and possess marijuana.

According to a recent SurveyUSA poll, 70% of Kansans believe that medical marijuana should be legal, but unfortunately, State Sen. Mary Pilcher-Cook (R-Shawnee), chair of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee, intends to block the bill from receiving a hearing. Pilcher-Cook said in an interview with AP, “I don’t think the Legislature would be for it,” she said. “We have a very limited session. You have to look at the opportunity costs.”

Opportunity costs? What about the opportunity cost of denying every sick person who would benefit from marijuana the right to use it? Or how about the opportunity costs of someone taking addictive and dangerous opiates because they don’t have safe access to marijuana?

Lives are literally hanging in the balance and the opportunity cost of not allowing this bill a hearing is too great.

Please call Senator Pilcher-Cook’s office (785-296-7362)  urging her to allow SB 9 to receive a hearing.

For more information click HERE.

ALCOHOL-VS-MARIJUANA. You Decide. Please sign the petition if you agree with this scientifically based information from MPP.org and the CDC.

Alcohol versus Cannabis(marijuana)

ALCOHOL-VS-MARIJUANA. You Decide. Please sign the petition if you agree with this scientifically based information from MPP.org and the CDC.
ALCOHOL-VS-MARIJUANA. You Decide. Please sign the petition if you agree with this scientifically based information from MPP.org and the CDC.
  • To say that marijuana has been given a bad rap over the past few decades is an understatement. If you’re like most Americans, you have been led to believe that marijuana is a dangerous and addictive drug that has destroyed the lives of millions of teens and adults. You have been encouraged to believe that marijuana causes lung cancer and is a “gateway” to harder drugs. The government has even tried to convince you that most people who use marijuana are losers who sit around on couches all day doing nothing.What we would like to do is wipe the slate clean and start over. Forget everything you have heard in the past and be open-minded to the truth about marijuana. We are not here to tell you that it is without harms or is some kind of miracle drug. We simply hope you will come to understand that it is far, far less harmful than what your government has told you.

    Part of the problem is that many people are simply unfamiliar with marijuana. They have never tried it (or perhaps only tried it a time or two decades ago) and assume the worst. They have been conditioned to think that marijuana use is bad and that people who use it are dangerous or strange or maybe even dirty. They have visions of people using marijuana and being totally zonked out, unable to maintain a regular conversation.

    The truth is that marijuana is widely used in a manner quite similar to alcohol. Adults might consume it before enjoying a dinner party with friends. Friends might have a little before engaging in a spirited game of ultimate frisbee. And spouses – yes, even some couples you know –  might imbibe a bit while enjoying a romantic evening together. Concert-goers have even been known to have a puff or two before or during a show – which more likely than not results in them dancing or otherwise enjoying the music, not lying on the ground like lumps.

    None of this is “bad” or “wrong” or “immoral.” It is simply something that these responsible adults choose to do. And frequently, it is something they choose to do specifically instead of alcohol. And for good reason! Alcohol is more toxic, more addictive, more harmful to the body, more likely to result in injuries, and more likely to lead to interpersonal violence than marijuana.

    Below are just a few facts that highlight the very different impacts of these two popular substances on those who consume them and on the broader community.

  • Many people die from alcohol use. Nobody dies from marijuana use. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that more than 37,000 annual U.S. deaths are attributed to alcohol use alone (this figure does not include accidental deaths). On the other hand, the CDC does not even have a category for deaths caused by the use of marijuana.
  • People die from alcohol overdoses. There has never been a fatal marijuana overdose. The official publication of the Scientific Research Society, American Scientistreported that alcohol is one of the most toxic drugs and using just 10 times what one would use to get the desired effect could lead to death. Marijuana is one of – if not the – least toxic drugs, requiring thousands of times the dose one would use to get the desired effect to lead to death. This “thousands of times” is actually theoretical, since there has never been a case of an individual dying from a marijuana overdose. Meanwhile, according to the CDC, hundreds of alcohol overdose deaths occur in the United States each year.
  • The health-related costs associated with alcohol use far exceed those for marijuana use. Health-related costs for alcohol consumers are eight times greater than those for marijuana consumers, according to an assessment recently published in the British Columbia Mental Health and Addictions Journal. More specifically, the annual health-related cost of alcohol consumption is $165 per user, compared to just $20 per user for marijuana. This should not come as a surprise given the vast amount of research that shows alcohol poses far more – and more significant – health problems than marijuana.
  • Alcohol use damages the brain. Marijuana use does not. Despite the myths we’ve heard throughout our lives about marijuana killing brain cells, it turns out that a growing number of studies seem to indicate that marijuana actually has neuroprotective properties. This means that it works to protect brain cells from harm. For example, one recent study found that teens who used marijuana as well as alcohol suffered significantly less damage to the white matter in their brains. Of course, what is beyond question is that alcohol damages brain cells.
  • Alcohol use is linked to cancer. Marijuana use is not. Alcohol use is associated with a wide variety of cancers, including cancers of the esophagus, stomach, colon, lungs, pancreas, liver, and prostate. Marijuana use has not been conclusively associated with any form of cancer. In fact, one study recently contradicted the long-time government claim that marijuana use is associated with head and neck cancers. It found that marijuana use actually reduced the likelihood of head and neck cancers. If you are concerned about marijuana being associated with lung cancer, you may be interested in the results of the largest case-controlled study ever conducted to investigate the respiratory effects of marijuana smoking and cigarette smoking. Released in 2006, the study, conducted by Dr. Donald Tashkin at the University of California at Los Angeles, found that marijuana smoking was not associated with an increased risk of developing lung cancer. Surprisingly, the researchers found that people who smoked marijuana actually had lower incidences of cancer compared to non-users of the drug.
  • Alcohol is more addictive than marijuana. Addiction researchers have consistently reported that marijuana is far less addictive than alcohol based on a number of factors. In particular, alcohol use can result in significant and potentially fatal physical withdrawal, whereas marijuana has not been found to produce any symptoms of physical withdrawal. Those who use alcohol are also much more likely to develop dependence and build tolerance.
  • Alcohol use increases the risk of injury to the consumer. Marijuana use does not. Many people who have consumed alcohol, or know others who have consumed alcohol, would not be surprised to hear that it greatly increases the risk of serious injury. Research published in 2011 in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research found that 36% of hospitalized assaults and 21% of all injuries are attributable to alcohol use by the injured person. Meanwhile, the American Journal of Emergency Medicine reported that lifetime use of marijuana is rarely associated with emergency room visits. According to the British Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, this is because: “Cannabis differs from alcohol … in one major respect. It does not seem to increase risk-taking behavior. This means that cannabis rarely contributes to violence either to others or to oneself, whereas alcohol use is a major factor in deliberate self-harm, domestic accidents and violence.” Interestingly enough, some research has even shown that marijuana use has been associated with a decreased risk of injury.
  • Alcohol use contributes to aggressive and violent behavior. Marijuana use does not. Studies have repeatedly shown that alcohol, unlike marijuana, contributes to the likelihood of aggressive and violent behavior. An article published in the Journal of Addictive Behaviors reported that “alcohol is clearly the drug with the most evidence to support a direct intoxication-violence relationship,” whereas “cannabis reduces the likelihood of violence during intoxication.”
    • Alcohol use is a major factor in violent crimes. Marijuana use is not. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism estimates that 25% to 30% of violent crimes in the United States are linked to the use of alcohol. According to a report from the U.S. Dept. of Justice, that translates to about 5,000,000 alcohol-related violent crimes per year. By contrast, the government does not even track violent acts specifically related to marijuana use, as the use of marijuana has not been associated with violence. (Of course, we should note that marijuana prohibition, by creating a widespread criminal market, is associated with acts of violence.)
    • Alcohol use contributes to the likelihood of domestic abuse and sexual assault. Marijuana use does not. Alcohol is a major contributing factor in the prevalence of domestic violence and sexual assault. This is not to say that alcohol causes these problems; rather, its use makes it more likely that an individual prone to such behavior will act on it. For example, a study conducted by the Research Institute on Addictions found that among individuals who were chronic partner abusers, the use of alcohol was associated with significant increases in the daily likelihood of male-to-female physical aggression, but the use of marijuana was not. Specifically, the odds of abuse were eight times higher on days when men were drinking; the odds of severe abuse were 11 times higher. The Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN) website highlights alcohol as the “most commonly used chemical in crimes of sexual assault” and provides information on an array of other drugs that have been linked to sexual violence. Given the fact that marijuana is so accessible and widely used, it is quite telling that the word “marijuana” does not appear anywhere on the page.
http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/decriminalize-marijuana-16
http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/decriminalize-marijuana-16

Information from: MPP.org