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US DE: Marijuana Legalization Finds Support In Del.

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 10/21/2014 - 07:00
Washington Post, 21 Oct 2014 - Advocates of legalizing marijuana should be pleased: Legalization has strong support in Delaware, a 2016 target for the movement. Legalizing marijuana for adult recreational use enjoys 56 percent support in the state, while just 39 percent oppose legalization, according to a new poll from the University of Delaware's Center for Political Communication. And the breakdown was the same when the sample was limited merely to registered voters, says Paul Brewer, CPC's associate director for research and professor in the Department of Communication and Department of Political Science and International Relations. - --- MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom
Categories: Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Philly Decrim in Effect, Facebook Chides DEA, Mexico Mayhem, More (10/20/14)

Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 10/20/2014 - 21:05

New pot polls in New Hampshire and North Dakota, Philly decrim goes into effect, NYC marijuana arrests continue, Nevada senator wants heroin clinics, Massachusetts' chief justice slams mandatory minimums, Facebook sends a stern letter to DEA, mayhem continues in Mexico, and more. Let's get to it:

[image:1 align:right caption:true]Marijuana Policy

Arkansas Attorney General Rejects Legalization Initiative Wording. It's back to the drawing board for Mary Berry and her legalization initiative. Attorney General Dustin McDaniel has rejected the wording of the initiative, citing "ambiguities" in the text and telling her to "redesign" it. McDaniel has already approved the wording for two other initiatives, one for medical marijuana and one that would make it legal to grow and possess marijuana.

New Hampshire Poll Has Healthy Majority for Legalization. A new WMUR Granite State poll has 59% of respondents favoring marijuana legalization, with 35% opposed. Support for legalization is up eight percent over last year. Only 27% favored maintaining the pot prohibition status quo. New Hampshire is one of the states activists are eyeing for a legalization push in the next year or two.

North Dakota Poll Has Only 24% Supporting Legalization. In what must be one of most anti-marijuana poll results in recent years, a University of North Dakota College of Business and Public Administration poll found that more than two-thirds (68%) of respondents opposed marijuana legalization, with only 24% in favor. Even medical marijuana, which typically polls in the 70s or 80s with a generic question, garnered only 47% support. At least that's more than the 41% who opposed it. Click on the link for more poll details.

Dallas March for Legalization and Medical Marijuana. An estimated 5,000 people showed up in Dallas Saturday to rally for medical marijuana and marijuana legalization. The Dallas Marijuana March was sponsored by Dallas-Ft. Worth NORML.

New York City Marijuana Arrests Continue. In a report released today, the Marijuana Arrest Research Project finds that, despite campaign promises from Mayor Bill de Blasio, marijuana possession arrests are on track to equal or even surpass the number of arrests made under his predecessor, Michael Bloomberg. Despite a new mayor and new police commissioner, the NYPD continues its practice of making penny-ante pot arrests, especially of non-white people. Some 86% of those busted under de Blasio were black or Latino. New York State decriminalized personal possession of small amounts of marijuana in 1977, yet over the last twenty years, marijuana possession has become a top law enforcement priority, with nearly 600,000 people having been arrested under this provision in New York City alone, often as the result of an illegal search or as the result of a stop-and-frisk encounter when police demand an individual "empty their pockets," thus exposing marijuana to public view.

Marijuana Decriminalization Now in Effect in Philadelphia. As of today, getting caught with a little pot in Philadelphia will face no more than a $25 fine ($100 if caught smoking it) and, possibly, up to nine hours of community service. The city council approved the measure in June, and Mayor Michael Nutter (D) signed the bill into law October 1.

Wichita Advocates Try Again With New Decriminalization Initiative. Hoping that the second time is the charm, Kansas for Change is plotting a new municipal decriminalization initiative. An effort earlier this year came up short after more than half the signatures turned in turned out to be invalid. They will need to gather 3,000 valid signatures by February 19 to make the deadline for the April 2015 ballot.

NORML PAC Endorses Cory Booker in New Jersey US Senate Race. NORML is standing by Sen. Cory Booker (D) in his bid for reelection in New Jersey. The advocacy group's political action committee has again endorsed Booker, as it did during his 2013 election campaign. "Senator Booker kept the promises he made to champion crucial criminal justice and marijuana reform issues in his first term," said NORML PAC manager Erik Altieri. "If reelected for a full six year term this fall, he will be a strong crusader for rolling back our failed war on cannabis at the federal level. We encourage New Jersey voters to support him in his campaign."

Medical Marijuana

Guam Judge Dismisses Lawsuit; Medical Marijuana Vote to Go Ahead. A US district court judge has dismissed a lawsuit challenging next month's vote on a legislative medical marijuana initiative. Attorney Howard Trapp had sued to block the vote last month on the grounds that a "legislative submission" was illegal under Guam law, but the judge dismissed the lawsuit, saying that Trapp didn't have legal standing to bring it.

Asset Forfeiture

Arizona Tribal Police Seize Student's Car Over Single Joint. An Arizona State University student is going public with her complaint that the Salt River Pima-Maricopa tribal police seized her vehicle over a single marijuana cigarette. The student, identified only as Kayla, said she was pulling over for a traffic infraction, admitted to having a joint, and was then arrested for possession and DUI and her car seized. The Indian tribe's laws allow for forfeiture even for minor marijuana possession. Kayla got her car back 4 ½ months later, but only because it was registered to someone else. The tribe remains unrepentant.

Heroin

Nevada State Senator Calls for Prescription Heroin Clinics. State Sen. Tick Segerblom (D-Las Vegas) is calling for the creation of heroin clinics, where addicts could get prescribed doses of the drugs, as a means of dealing with addiction and issues associated with it. He said he will introduce a bill to that effect in the 2015 legislative session. The clinics would also provide counseling and therapy. "The goal is to get people off the street, out of the criminal element, address their addiction and then hopefully figure out a way to get them off of the drug," Segerblom said.

Sentencing

Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Calls for end to Mandatory Minimums. New chief justice of the Supreme Judicial Court Ralph Gants has called for the repeal of mandatory minimum sentences in his first public address since assuming the office. Gants, a former federal prosecutor, noted the "disparate impact" of such sentences on racial and ethnic minorities and challenged drug war orthodoxy. "How well is the status quo working?" he asked. "Heroin is cheaper, more easily available, and more deadly than it has been in my lifetime," he added. "Drug overdose is now the leading cause of accidental death in Massachusetts, exceeding motor vehicle accidents."

Law Enforcement

Facebook Tells DEA to Stop Creating Fake Accounts. The social media giant has sent a strongly-worded letter to the DEA telling the agency to stop creating accounts impersonating real people in its bid to catch drug criminals. The Facebook move comes after the agency was revealed to have used the identity of a real woman, including posting revealing photos of her, as part of its drug-fighting efforts. Facebook is "deeply troubled" by the incident, the letter says, especially since it violates its rules about only using real identities.

International

Mexico Social Media Cartel Watcher Kidnapped, Killed, Body Shown on Her Hacked Twitter Account. Reynosa physician Dr. Maria del Rosario Fuentes Rubio participated in social media crime watch activities, reporting on the doings of drug cartel members, and it cost her her life. She was kidnapped last week and her Twitter account hacked. A photo of her dead body appeared on it, along with a message warning others on her network to close their accounts. "Today my life has reached its end," read one hacked tweet. "I can only tell you not to make the same mistake I did," said another. The hackers also directly threatened another citizen journalist, @ValorTamaulipas, warning that "death is closer than you think."

Mexico Police Arrest Drug Gang Leader Linked to Missing Students. Mexican authorities said last Friday they had arrested Sidronio Casarrubias Salgado, head of the Guerrero Unidos drug trafficking organization. The group has been linked to the disappearance of 43 radical teachers' college students, who went missing after participating in political demonstrations in Iguala. Several mass graves have been found, but it's not clear if the bodies in them are those of the missing students. The incident has led to massive public protests and become a serious crisis for the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto. The same day Casarrubias was arrested, thousands marched in Acapulco to demand the students be found alive. Days earlier, demonstrators set fires in government buildings in the state capital of Chilpancingo.

Honduras Beefs Up Air Force for More, Better Drug War. The Honduran Air Force has purchased two combat fighters from Brazil's Embraer for $29 million and been donated four helicopters worth $36 million from Taiwan as part of an effort to step up its fight against drug traffickers. Honduran President Juan Hernandez has pledged to crack down on drug trafficking, and the Honduran Congress has given the okay to shoot down suspected drug planes transiting national air space.

Marijuana Smoke-In in Melbourne Goes Unimpeded by Police. Some 200 people gathered in Melbourne, Australia, Sunday for a marijuana reform rally that included lots of people smoking pot. Victoria State Police didn't bother to show up.

This article was published by StoptheDrugWar.org's lobbying arm, the Drug Reform Coordination Network, which also shares the cost of maintaining this web site. DRCNet Foundation takes no positions on candidates for public office, in compliance with section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and does not pay for reporting that could be interpreted or misinterpreted as doing so.)

Categories: Marijuana

US FL: Voters To Decide Fate Of Medical Marijuana

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/19/2014 - 07:00
News Herald, 19 Oct 2014 - PANAMA CITY - With Florida voters slated to weigh in on a measure to legalize medical cannabis in the coming weeks, campaign interest groups are launching last-ditch efforts to sell marijuana as either a dangerous drug or medical miracle. Officially titled the "Florida Right to Medical Marijuana Initiative," Amendment 2 would fully legalize medical marijuana in the state, providing a much broader scope than the Legislature's Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act, which legalized a noneuphoric strain of medical marijuana for specific patients earlier this year.
Categories: Marijuana

US FL: City Of Sarasota Looks At Pot Operation Moratorium

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/19/2014 - 07:00
Sarasota Herald-Tribune, 19 Oct 2014 - SARASOTA - Sarasota County and the City of North Port are scurrying to get marijuana ordinances on their books before the Nov. 4 election, part of a growing number of local governments in Florida that are advancing rules ahead of the statewide vote on legalizing medical marijuana. The City of Sarasota, meanwhile, is considering a yearlong moratorium on any marijuana endeavors ahead of the vote on Amendment 2.
Categories: Marijuana

US NJ: March To Legalize Marijuana Comes To New Jersey

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/19/2014 - 07:00
The Trentonian, 19 Oct 2014 - TRENTON - Several hundred people gathered in front of the New Jersey statehouse on Saturday to push for the legalization of marijuana. The event would be the second major gathering near the statehouse where the crowd would light up in defiance of the law. The last occurred in April on Easter. No arrests appear to have been made at the event which went off without much complication, despite one individual passing out around the beginning of the event. A relative told organizers that his brother suffers from anxiety and was overcome, he was transported to an area hospital by EMT's for evaluation. For registered nurse Jennie Stormes the event would be a bittersweet goodbye. After years of fighting to get her son Jackson access to cannabis to treat his seizures in New Jersey, she has made the decision to uproot her family and head to Colorado where the drug is legal.
Categories: Marijuana

US CO: Colorado Politicians Mostly Silent On Pot

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/19/2014 - 07:00
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 19 Oct 2014 - DENVER (AP) - Colorado has seen feisty debates this fall, with candidates in close races for governor, Senate and the U.S. House arguing over abortion rights, energy policy and the death penalty. Just don't expect any of them to talk much about the biggest news of the year: legal pot. While the state's 10month-old marijuana retail experiment has received worldwide attention and sales of recreational and medical pot have generated more than $45 million for state coffers, most voters have collectively shrugged. Predictions that they would go scrambling back to the polls to repeal the legal-pot law they passed in 2012 haven't yet materialized.
Categories: Marijuana

US NM: Pot Question Has The Interest Of Early Voters

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 10/19/2014 - 07:00
Albuquerque Journal, 19 Oct 2014 - A non-binding question about pot seems to be growing interest in Bernalillo County ballots. Eighteen early voting centers opened throughout the county on Saturday, the first day early voting was available at numerous locations.
Categories: Marijuana

CN BC: Family Of Summerland Girl With Seizure Disorder Gets Lift

Marijuana (MAP) - Sat, 10/18/2014 - 07:00
The Daily Courier, 18 Oct 2014 - The producer of a documentary about marijuana laws has shared the proceeds from the film's Kelowna premiere with families struggling to pay for medical cannabis. Adam Scorgie presented Kyla Williams, her mother Courtney Williams and grandfather Chris Nuessler with a cheque for $3,500 from the proceeds of the premiere of The Culture High.
Categories: Marijuana

US FL: Editorial: Our View On The Proposed Constitutional

Marijuana (MAP) - Sat, 10/18/2014 - 07:00
Florida Times-Union, 18 Oct 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.
Categories: Marijuana

US FL: Editorial: Medicinal Pot Deserves 'Yes'

Marijuana (MAP) - Sat, 10/18/2014 - 07:00
The Palm Beach Post, 18 Oct 2014 - It's not difficult to understand the recent erosion of support for Amendment 2, the ballot initiative that would expand the use of marijuana in Florida by patients suffering from debilitating illnesses. Indeed, after polling as high as 80 percent among likely voters in the spring, most polls now have it barely hitting the 60 percent threshold needed for passage.
Categories: Marijuana

US FL: Column: Pain Clinic Owner Makes Case for Pot

Marijuana (MAP) - Sat, 10/18/2014 - 07:00
Sarasota Herald-Tribune, 18 Oct 2014 - Paul Sloan's crusade has him paying for billboards and writing letters to the editor, hoping there is time to overcome what he sees as a misguided but effective disinformation campaign. Big names in law enforcement statewide are deeply involved, and not on his side.
Categories: Marijuana

US FL: Editorial: Pot Amendment: Vote No

Marijuana (MAP) - Sat, 10/18/2014 - 07:00
Orlando Sentinel, 18 Oct 2014 - The stories are heart wrenching. There's the heroic lifeguard who dove into disaster trying to rescue a swimmer. Now, brief respites from relentless pain and ruthless spasms come only through pot-infused edibles. Then there's the 60-ish wheelchair-user who grows her own cannabis to combat the indelicate drooling, face-numbing, and other withering dysfunction of deadly ALS. And there's the lawbreaker-turned-lawmaker. He procured pot for a dying friend who longed to stomach his last meals. The obliging friend - current Republican Senate President Don Gaetz - granted his friend a dying wish and dignity, scoring the illicit drug in obedience of a higher law - compassion.
Categories: Marijuana

US WA: Washington Puts Pot Sales, Fines Online For Banks

Marijuana (MAP) - Sat, 10/18/2014 - 07:00
Seattle Times, 18 Oct 2014 - Banks Need Updates to Rate Client Risk 2 of State's Top-Selling Shops Are in Vancouver Banking remains a thorny issue for legal marijuana businesses, but regulators in Washington state are trying to make it easier for financial institutions to track their pot-related customers.
Categories: Marijuana

Chronicle AM: OR Battle of the Moms, San Jose Dispensaries Gone, Four Pillars Revisited, More (10/17/14)

Marijuana (STDW) - Fri, 10/17/2014 - 20:04

Oregon moms take stands on Measure 91, a new Delaware poll has healthy support for legalization, say goodbye to most of San Jose's dispensaries, there's an asset forfeiture reform bill in Virginia, and more. Let's get to it:

[image:1 align:right caption:true]Marijuana Policy

Moms Rally For and Against Oregon Initiative. It was the battle of the moms today in Oregon as mothers for and against the Measure 91 legalization initiative held opposing rallies. The pro side met in Portland, while the anti side met in Lake Oswego. The moms for 91 included mothers who came from Colorado and Washington and spoke of the experiences there. Click the link for more detail.

Delaware Poll Has Healthy Majority for Legalization. A University of Delaware poll released Thursday has support for marijuana legalization at 56%, with only 39% opposed. Majorities in all three of the state's counties supported legalization. "I would say the numbers suggest solid support for fully legalizing marijuana in Delaware," said Paul Brewer, the political communications professor at the University of Delaware who supervised the poll. "The results also reflect what's going on in public opinion at the national level, where the trends show a growing majority favoring legalization." Click on the link for a broader discussion of pot politics in the state.

Medical Marijuana

The Bell Tolls for San Jose Dispensaries. There is about to be a dramatic decrease in access to medical marijuana in San Jose. The city had up to 80 dispensaries this summer, but only six have permits, which means that as of today, the rest must shut down. Forty-seven more have filed for permits, but 20 have been denied and 20 more remain under review. The move comes after the city passed a strict new dispensary ordinance earlier this year. An effort to challenge it with an initiative came up short.

Oregon Court Rules Local Governments Can Ban Dispensaries. In a Thursday ruling, a Josephine County Circuit Court judge has held that local governments can restrict or ban dispensaries. In a case brought by the town of Cave Junction, Judge Pat Wolke ruled that nothing in the state's dispensary law or another law enacted last year that let localities impose yearlong dispensary moratoriums bars them from instituting outright bans. State city and county associations had argued strenuously that local governments had that ability.

Asset Forfeiture

Asset Forfeiture Reform Bill Filed in Virginia. Del. Mark Cole (R-Fredericksburg) has filed a bill that would require a criminal conviction before authorities could seize property. Under current state law, a criminal conviction is not required for asset forfeiture to take place. "While I certainly do not want to make the job of our law enforcement officials harder, I believe we need to strengthen our property protections to avoid potential abuse or the taking of property from an innocent person," he said. The bill is HB 1287. It's strange bedfellow supporters include tea party groups and the ACLU.

International

Vancouver's Four Pillar Policy: Where Is It Now? It's been 13 years since Vancouver approved a groundbreaking, progressive drug policy that explicitly included controversial harm reduction provisions, as well as treatment, prevention, and law enforcement (thus, the four pillars). Now, a new series available via broadcast or podcast, examines where Four Pillars is today, what it has achieved, and whether it can last. Click on the link for more details and to find out where and how to watch.

Categories: Marijuana

Canada: Myths Trump Facts Among Young Pot Users

Marijuana (MAP) - Fri, 10/17/2014 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 17 Oct 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.
Categories: Marijuana

CN NS: Column: One Pill Can Kill

Marijuana (MAP) - Fri, 10/17/2014 - 07:00
Amherst News, 17 Oct 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.
Categories: Marijuana

Canada: Pot and the Teenage Brain: Understanding the Science

Marijuana (MAP) - Fri, 10/17/2014 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 17 Oct 2014 - Because their brains are still developing, adolescents may be particularly vulnerable to the negative effects of marijuana. During this crucial period, brain connections are strengthened through myelination - growth of fatty insulation around the neurons - as well as a "pruning" of inefficient neural connections. It's a lengthy process, stretching past the postsecondary years to at least 25.
Categories: Marijuana

CN BC: Less Drug, Alcohol and Sexual Activity With Vancouver

Marijuana (MAP) - Fri, 10/17/2014 - 07:00
Vancouver 24hours, 17 Oct 2014 - Survey Finds Reductions in Some Risky Behaviours Over the Last Decade, While Mental Health Concerns Grow Fewer Vancouver teens are drinking and doing drugs than they were a decade ago, shows a survey of over 2,000 local students. The percentage of Vancouver youth who have tried alcohol decreased from 45% to 33%, while those who have tried marijuana dropped 7% in the last decade, says a McCreary Centre Society survey of adolescent health.
Categories: Marijuana

Canada: Your Kid's Brain on Pot

Marijuana (MAP) - Fri, 10/17/2014 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 17 Oct 2014 - As the debate over legalization heats up, Adriana Barton examines the effects of marijuana on the developing brains of teenagers - our nation's most prolific users - and finds there is no such thing as a harmless habit Like it or not, your kids will probably try marijuana. So will their friends. Canadian teens are more than twice as likely as adults to smoke pot - and have the highest rate of cannabis use in the developed world. Marijuana has become as much a part of Canada's youth culture as hockey or Katy Perry.
Categories: Marijuana

US CA: Federal Official Urges State to Tighten Medical

Marijuana (MAP) - Fri, 10/17/2014 - 07:00
Los Angeles Times, 17 Oct 2014 - California should strengthen its regulation of the medical marijuana industry if the state wants to avoid federal intervention, U.S. Deputy Atty. Gen. James M. Cole said in an interview with The Times. Cole, who announced Thursday that he is leaving the No. 2 job at the Justice Department, said he was proud of his efforts to take a softer approach to enforcing federal marijuana laws. A year ago, Cole sent a memo to all U.S. attorneys, including several in California who had aggressively targeted medical marijuana facilities, telling them to ease up on marijuana prosecutions in states where it was legal.
Categories: Marijuana
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