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Marijuana

US CA: Column: Marijuana And Equity

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/08/2016 - 07:00
East Bay Express, 08 Jun 2016 - Personal pot possession in California was reduced from an arrest to an infraction in 2010, but systemic racism around pot enforcement continues, a new study finds. The American Civil Liberties Union of California, in conjunction with the Drug Policy Alliance, published a groundbreaking, heavily reported piece of research Monday that concludes that the Black community in California faces ticketing for pot at a rate four times as high as whites. Latinos have about double the rate of pot tickets as whites.
Categories: Marijuana

US MI: Column: Fighting For A Vote On Legalized Marijuana

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/08/2016 - 07:00
Metro Times, 08 Jun 2016 - MILegalize is still kicking. The effort to legalize recreational marijuana in Michigan turned in more than 350,000 signatures in its attempt to put the question on the fall ballot. It was the only group out of a number of petition efforts to actually turn in their petitions with the qualifying 252,523 signatures. To the organizers, activists, petition circulators, and petition signers, I say: "Well done." But the main question being asked now is: Was it done quickly enough?
Categories: Marijuana

US CO: Column: Obama's Academy Visit Primetime for Cannabis

Marijuana (MAP) - Wed, 06/08/2016 - 07:00
Colorado Springs Independent, 08 Jun 2016 - Even for a city always crawling with military brass, our June 2 visitor was still a cut above. The Commander in Chief was in town to address the Air Force Academy's graduation ceremony - an affair that brought in proud families from all over the country and, of course, sizable media attention. Local cannabis activists saw an opportunity in the occasion. Rolling out of bed at sunrise, a group of 10 diehards gathered around the Academy's gates to send a message to President Barack Obama, Mayor John Suthers and all the ceremony attendees: Leave patients alone.
Categories: Marijuana

Chronicle AM: States Failing on Drug Treatment Insurance, MI Initiative Soldiers On, More... (6/7/16)

Marijuana (STDW) - Tue, 06/07/2016 - 21:30

Michigan legalizers suffered a double blow today but vow to fight on, a California medical marijuana initiative from anti-marijuana activists dies on the vine, a new report says the states need to step up on addiction treatment coverage under the Affordable Care Act, and more.

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

Rick Steves Is Matching Donations to Maine Legalization Initiative. Travel show host and marijuana legalization advocate Rick Steves has announced he will match any donations to the Maine Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol. The initiative has already qualified for the November ballot, and Steves has $50,000 set aside for matching donations.

Michigan Pot Legalization Initiative Takes Double Blow, But Vows to Fight On. Efforts to let Michiganders vote on legalizing marijuana this year suffered a one-two punch from the state's political establishment today, but organizers are unbowed and are vowing to keep up the fight to get their initiative on the ballot. First, the state election board ruled Tuesday that the initiative was at least 106,000 signatures short of qualifying after throwing out 137,000 signatures that were gathered more than 180 days before the signatures were handed in. Then, Gov. Rick Snyder (R) signed into law Senate Bill 776, which limits signature gathering to a strict 180-day window. But Mi Legalize says it is fighting on. "We're alive and well," said MI Legalize spokesman Jeffrey Hank. "We expected this, and in the next few days, we'll be filing a lawsuit. We will continue to run our campaign as we go through litigation." The campaign says it needs financial help, too.

Medical Marijuana

California Initiative to Create State Medical Marijuana Monopoly Fails to Qualify. An initiative filed by a leading state anti-medical marijuana activist that would have banned all private cultivation sites and dispensaries has failed to qualify for the ballot. The California Safe and Drug-Free Community Act was filed by Roger Morgan, with the Take Back American campaign, which brandishes a #stoppot hashtag.

Drug Treatment

Report: States Are Failing to Provide Sufficient Insurance Coverage for Addiction Treatment. A new report from the National Center of Addiction and Substance Abuse reviewed Essential Health Benefits (EHB) benchmark plans under the Affordable Care Act and called its findings "disheartening." None of the plans provided comprehensive coverage for addiction treatment without harmful treatment limitations, two-thirds of the plans had ACA violations, and nearly one in five didn't comply with parity requirements.

Categories: Marijuana

Michigan Marijuana Legalization Initiative Takes Double Blow, But Vows to Fight On

Marijuana (STDW) - Tue, 06/07/2016 - 20:48

Efforts to let Michiganders vote on legalizing marijuana this year suffered a one-two punch from the state's political establishment today, but organizers are unbowed and are vowing to keep up the fight to get their initiative on the ballot.

[image:1 align:left caption:true]The campaign is led by the Michigan Comprehensive Cannabis Law Reform Committee, also known as MI Legalize.

First, the state election board ruled Tuesday that the initiative was at least 106,000 signatures short of qualifying after throwing out 137,000 signatures that were gathered more than 180 days before the signatures were handed in. Last week, the campaign handed in more than 345,000 raw signatures. It needed 252,000 valid signatures to qualify for the November ballot.

The campaign hopes to take advantage in ambiguities in the state's initiative and referendum laws that left an opening for getting older signatures validated, but that hope took another hit later on Tuesday when Gov. Rick Snyder (R) signed into law Senate Bill 776, which limits signature gathering to a strict 180-day window.

"Establishing reasonable time limits on when signatures can be collected helps ensure the issues that make the ballot are the ones that matter most to Michiganders," Snyder said in a statement.

The law passed both the House and Senate with only Republican support, and opponents have said the law will impede the ability of the people to have a voice in government and challenge laws passed by the legislature.

MI Legalize said it is considering legal challenges.

"We're alive and well," MI Legalize spokesman Jeffrey Hank told the Chronicle Tuesday afternoon. "We expected this, and in the next few days, we'll be filing a lawsuit. We will continue to run our campaign as we go through litigation."

But the upstart campaign needs some help, Hank said.

"We've raised over $1.1 million without any big national money," he said. "If we win, this would be the second or third largest marijuana market in the county (after California), but we need people to continue to support us financially."

People can make donations through the MI Legalize website.

Categories: Marijuana

US NJ: Series: Marijuana And Criminal Justice In New Jersey

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 06/07/2016 - 07:00
New Jersey Herald, 07 Jun 2016 - EDITOR'S NOTE: Legalizing recreational marijuana is being considered in New Jersey. The most recent Rutgers-Eagleton poll shows public support for legalizing recreational marijuana in New Jersey is 58 percent - the highest it's ever been - with 39 percent opposed.
Categories: Marijuana

CN ON: 9 Views On Pot Legalization

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 06/07/2016 - 07:00
Toronto Star, 07 Jun 2016 - After last week's pot raids, experts talk about restraint, acceptance of the controversial drug Everybody seems to be talking about marijuana these days. Impending legalization has prompted a many-faceted debate about how our society should incorporate the greenery, even as dispensaries selling cannabis and related goods are popping up like, well, weeds.
Categories: Marijuana

Canada: Veterans' Opioid Requests Down

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 06/07/2016 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 07 Jun 2016 - Data Show Fewer Are Seeking The Drugs In Recent Years, While Prescriptions For Medical Marijuana Have Skyrocketed Fewer Canadian veterans have sought prescription opioids and tranquilizers in recent years, while at the same time prescriptions for medical marijuana have skyrocketed.
Categories: Marijuana

US MT: OPED: A Responsible Medical Marijuana Program For

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 06/07/2016 - 07:00
Missoulian, 07 Jun 2016 - Someday you or someone you love may need safe, legal access to medical marijuana. You, or they, may have cancer, epilepsy, irritable bowel syndrome, colitis, or Crohn's disease, Parkinson's, breast cancer, a recent heart attack, or may be a veteran or emergency worker with post-traumatic stress disorder. In 2004, 64 percent of Montana voters passed a law creating a medical marijuana program, but access for patients seeking relief will soon disappear because of political nonsense in the 2011 Legislature. With these draconian, nonsensical laws, you and your loved ones aren't going to get what you need for pain, symptom relief or a cure. In my town, there is a courageous 33-year old mom of two who is fighting a battle with cancer. You might have seen her, bald, on TV or in a newspaper photo, asking you to sign the petition to get Initiative 182 on the ballot and vote for the measure come November. Medical marijuana makes her daily struggle with chemotherapy possible, and allows her some quality of life. I-182 will ensure patients like her have access to the medicine they need, while putting new sideboards and accountability in place.
Categories: Marijuana

New Zealand: Medicinal Cannabis Review 'Ignorant'

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 06/07/2016 - 07:00
The Nelson Mail, 07 Jun 2016 - Medicinal cannabis advocates in Nelson are among those wanting international input after a "disappointing" review of guidelines for the drug. A Government review of the guidelines released last month said five medical professionals who had made at least one application to prescribe approved medicinal cannabis product Sativex unanimously supported the current rules, suggesting only minor changes.
Categories: Marijuana

US OH: OPED: Medical Marijuana Has Arrived In Ohio

Marijuana (MAP) - Tue, 06/07/2016 - 07:00
Morning Journal, 07 Jun 2016 - Lawmakers weren't bluffing when they pledged they would consider medical marijuana after an outside group's effort to legalize pot failed last November. Much of that push, of course, came from polls suggesting Ohioans favor medical marijuana, and from concerns that outsiders would again try for a more liberal marijuana law by amending the state constitution.
Categories: Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Obama Commutes More Drug Sentences, Majority for Legalization in New Poll, More... (6/6/16)

Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 06/06/2016 - 21:52

President Obama keeps chipping away at the federal drug prisoner population, Weldon Angelos finally goes free, yet another poll has a national majority for marijuana legalization, the new Filipino president encourages vigilante violence against drug dealers, and more.

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

Another National Poll Has Majority Support for Legalization, Near Unanimous Support for Medical Marijuana. A Quinnipiac University poll released Monday has support for marijuana legalization at 54%, with 41% opposed. That's in line with a bevy of polls in the past couple of years showing majority support for legalization. The new Quinnipiac poll also had support for medical marijuana at 89%, with only 9% opposed, and 87% support for allowed Veterans Administration doctors to recommend it to vets with PTSD.

Anti-Legalization Forces Seek Backing of Rightist Casino Billionaire. The anti-reform group Smart Approaches to Marijuana, led by Kevin Sabet, is seeking funding from Nevada casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson, who contributed millions of dollars to defeat a medical marijuana initiative in Florida in 2014. Adelson is also a major funder of Republican presidential candidates, having spent $15 million supporting Newt Gingrich in 2012.

Massachusetts Supreme Court to Hear Challenges to Legalization Initiative. The high court is set to hear two challenges Wednesday to the legalization initiative from the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol. One challenge alleges that organizers have misled voters about its ramifications and claims it would allow for the sale of GMO marijuana, while the other challenge says the words "marijuana legalization" in the initiative's title are misleading because it doesn't legalize it for people under 21.

Medical Marijuana

Montana Initiative Coming Up on Signature Deadline. Backers of Initiative 182, which seeks to restore the state's medical marijuana program demolished by the legislature in 2011, say they have some 30,000 raw signatures as a June 17 deadline draws near. They need 24,000 valid signatures to qualify. Initiative watchers generally assume as many as 30% of gathered signatures could be invalidated. If that were the case right now in Montana, the initiative would not make the ballot.

Drug Testing

Michigan Supreme Court to Hear Case of Mother Jailed for Refusing Drug Test in Son's Juvenile Case. The state's high court will hear the case of Kelly Michelle Dorsey, who was jailed for contempt of court in 2012 for refusing to take a drug test in a case involving her minor son, because the son was under the court's jurisdiction, not Dorsey. An appeals court held that forcing mothers to submit to drug tests in such cases was unconstitutional, but upheld a finding a contempt of court for her refusal. Now, the state Supreme Court is set to weigh in.

Sentencing

Obama Commutes Sentences for 42 More Drug Offenders, Including 20 Lifers. President Obama last Friday added another 42 names to the ever growing list of federal drug prisoners whose sentences he has commuted. That brings to 348 the number of commutations Obama has handed out, more than the last seven presidents combined. For a list of names of the newly commuted, go here.

Mandatory Minimum Sentencing Poster Child Weldon Angelos Freed After 12 Years. The Salt Lake City rap and hip hop label owner and small-time pot dealer was sentenced to 55 years in federal prison because he carried a pistol strapped to his ankle during marijuana deals. Now he is a free man after prosecutors moved to cut his sentence.

New Hampshire GOP Senator Wants to Jack Up Mandatory Minimums for Fentanyl. Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) is planning to offer an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act this week that would vastly increase mandatory minimums for fentanyl. Currently, it takes 100 grams of a mixture containing fentanyl to garner a five-year mandatory minimum; under Ayotte's proposal, it would only take half a gram. The Drug Policy Alliance and Families Against Mandatory Minimums are among those opposing the move.

International

Israeli Security Minister Opposes Marijuana Decriminalization. Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan said Sunday he opposes such a move because it could increase traffic accidents and police have no way of preventing drugged drivers from getting behind the wheel. He also said that policies were already lax and the decriminalization would amount to legalization. Opposition from Erdan and Health Minister Yaakov Litzman has delayed a vote on a decriminalization bill that was supposed to take place Sunday.

Philippines President Encourages People to Kill Drug Dealers. President Rodrigo Duterte used a televised speech Saturday night to encourage citizens to shoot and kill drug dealers who resist arrest. "Please feel free to call us, the police, or do it yourself if you have the gun -- you have my support," adding, "Shoot him and I'll give you a medal." He also threatened to kill drug addicts. Duterte, the former mayor of Davao City, was reputed to have been involved with death squad killings. Apparently some Filipino voters wanted to hear that or didn't mind, since they just elected him president.

Categories: Marijuana

CN MB: Pot Crackdown Steadfast In 'Peg

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 06/06/2016 - 07:00
Metro, 06 Jun 2016 - While marijuana dispensaries proliferate and engage in a game of legally-grey chicken with authorities in some Canadian cities, Winnipeg police say the same simply isn't happening locally. "There are a few people that have tried to open up and we enforced the laws as we know them right away," said Winnipeg Police Service Grow Operations Unit member, Sgt. Carrol MacDonald.
Categories: Marijuana

CN ON: Pot-Vocate Fights On After Losing Case

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 06/06/2016 - 07:00
Metro, 06 Jun 2016 - Ottawa Man Argues For The Right To Smoke Up In Public Local marijuana advocate Russell Barth has lost his human rights case against Mayor Jim Watson, but his fight for medical marijuana rights is far from over.
Categories: Marijuana

US NJ: Series: Public Health Effects Of Legalized Mariuana In

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 06/06/2016 - 07:00
New Jersey Herald, 06 Jun 2016 - EDITOR'S NOTE: Legalizing recreational marijuana is being seriously considered in New Jersey. The most recent Rutgers-Eagleton poll shows public support for legalizing recreational marijuana in New Jersey is 58 percent -- the highest it's ever been -- with 39 percent opposed.
Categories: Marijuana

US OH: Editorial: Leap Of Faith

Marijuana (MAP) - Mon, 06/06/2016 - 07:00
The Courier, 06 Jun 2016 - Lawmakers weren't bluffing when they pledged they would consider medical marijuana after an outside group's effort to legalize pot failed last November. Much of that push, of course, came from polls suggesting Ohioans favor medical marijuana, and from concerns that outsiders would again try for a more liberal marijuana law by amending the state constitution.
Categories: Marijuana

US LA: La. Gears Up For Medical Marijuana Business

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 06/05/2016 - 07:00
The Courier, 05 Jun 2016 - BATON ROUGE -- Growing up on a cotton farm in Missouri in the 1950s, Bill Richardson didn't know a thing about marijuana. Nobody talked about it, he never saw it and he certainly never smoked it. "I didn't inhale," Richardson, LSU's 71-year-old vice president for agriculture and dean of the College of Agriculture, said with a smile in a recent interview.
Categories: Marijuana

US MA: Second Pot Dispensary Proposed In Gloucester

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 06/05/2016 - 07:00
Salem News, 05 Jun 2016 - GLOUCESTER - A Boston-based company is seeking to open a dispensary in Gloucester's Cape Ann Industrial Park on Kondelin Road, the second company to try to carve out a niche serving medical marijuana patients from across Cape Ann. Company spokesman Frank Perullo confirmed Friday that Mayflower Medicinals has an agreement in place to lease some 2,000 square feet in a part of the industrial building at 8 Kondelin Road for a medical marijuana dispensary.
Categories: Marijuana

US IL: Rauner To Sign Medical Cannabis Bill

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 06/05/2016 - 07:00
Belleville News-Democrat, 05 Jun 2016 - For months, Illinois' fledgling medical cannabis industry had been limping along - dogged by uncertainties over its future and hurt by disappointingly low numbers of patients whose medical conditions qualified them for state certification cards. But in the last few days, the clouds of gloom have lifted thanks to a compromise bill now awaiting Gov. Bruce Rauner's signature. The measure would extend the state medical cannabis pilot program by 2 1/2 years, to July 1, 2020. It would also expand the list of qualifying conditions, to include post-traumatic stress disorder and terminal illnesses, potentially adding hundreds of thousands of new patients to the state registry.
Categories: Marijuana

US CA: OPED: Legalizing Marijuana Is A Hazy Question

Marijuana (MAP) - Sun, 06/05/2016 - 07:00
Los Angeles Times, 05 Jun 2016 - "I've spilt more than you've smoked," my brother-in-law, let's call him Marty, bragged to my husband in the throes of his addiction. A measure to legalize recreational marijuana is heading toward the California ballot in November. Marty would have been thrilled - but then, he didn't bother much with voting. My vote, too, would have been a no-brainer some years ago. Legalize it, tax it, make it safer, I would have said then, back when I felt more certain about everything, when I viewed addiction as a lack of self-discipline and personal weakness. I never dreamed it could take down an entire family.
Categories: Marijuana
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