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502 passes

Posted by Thomas harris on December 6, 2012 at 5:30 PM Comments comments (0)

End The Drug War! November 28, 2012

In a recent article published on our website, we explain the key reasons for ending our failed prohibition on cannabis. Doing so would bring untold benefits, and deal a huge blow to our failed war on drugs. However, even if cannabis were legalized, our nation would still be waging the widespread and devastating humans rights violation that our drug war has become. Even if you don’t condone the use of any drugs, it is difficult to argue that throwing someone into prison alongside murderers and other violent criminals–for simple drug possession, spending taxpayer money along the way–is anything other than bad policy.

The global conversation has opened up immensely over the past several years. United Nation reports have declared the war on drugs a failure (and multiple national leaders have called for an end), and over 80% of Americans have the same opinion. Times are changing.

As the conversation heightens, and with the need for reform ever-growing, here are a few of the primary reasons we believe that we should quickly and effectively end our war on drugs:

- Our war on drugs is not economically feasible, and cannot be maintained. Over a trillion dollars of taxpayers’ money has gone into fighting a massive war that the government can never win. A hardline approach to drug use has not diminished their presence in our society. Instead, it has enriched the criminals who choose to sell them, done nothing to decrease usage rates, and taken a mass population of nonviolent citizens and labeled them as lifelong criminals. In a faultering economy, with many shortfalls to account for, the money spent on this ridiculous war cannot be justified.

- Our war on drugs, and the black market it creates, has led to a pandemic of violence. Drug cartels, and the tens of thousands of deaths that come with their existence, are due directly to our war on drugs. Without the illegal drug market, these cartels would not be rich and powerful enough to, in many instances, overpower their own governments. Continual threats to and murders of journalists has stopped the people of these countries from fully understanding the issue and who is to blame. With an end to our war on drugs comes an end to much organized violence, and thousands of unneccessary deaths.

- Our war on drugs creates an entire class of nonviolent criminals. When someone is labeled a drug felon–which simple possession can do–it permanently alters their life. Student loans and grants become hard or impossible to get, as do jobs and many housing opportunities. Many times individuals who are hit with these charges have to later resort to a life of crime simply to get by. Roughly 50% of all federal inmates were sentenced for nonviolent drug-related offenses. Putting these people behind bars, alongside violent criminals, is inhumane, and often leads to offenders becoming hardened and de-socialized.

- Our war on drugs has led to instutional racism. It’s clear that our war on drugs disproportionately effects minorites. For example, reports show that African-Americans are 2.5 times likely to be arrested for cannabis, and 8 times more likely to be jailed for a drug offense, compared to someone who’s white. This is despite the fact that statistically, minorities don’t use drugs at a higher rate. This doesn’t come as a surprise when federal DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) agents are being told not to enforce drug laws in “white areas”.

- The war on drugs develops mistrust in our government and our legal system. Rather than properly educating people on the dangers of drug use, and helping rehabilitate those who may be addicted, we throw them in prison and label them criminals. Not only does this build mistrust in our legal system, it also breeds fear and hatred.

In addition to mistreating our citizens, our war on drugs leads to largely skewed priorities. Since Nixon declared this war in 1971, substances like cannabis have been labeled and treated the same as fatal substances such as meth and PCP. In our education system (yes, we’re looking at you, DARE), kids are taught that cannabis is equal in danger to substances like heroin. When kids find out this isn’t true about cannabis, likely through personal use, what’s to stop them from thinking they’ve also been lied to about other drugs? Education is key, and propaganda is dangerous.

We need to continue our work toward a fair and equal justice system. In such a system, there would be no room for failures like the war on drugs.

- Looking at an example, Portugal has had success not arresting people for drug possesion. Over a decade ago, Portugal decriminalized the possession of all drugs; the results were a resounding success. Under this model (which we’re not saying is perfect, but better than what we currently have), usage rates among minors decreased, as did the overall number of people consuming drugs. In addition, there was a large decrease in addiction rates, as well as in the rates of overdoses and STDs, likely due to the government offering treatment without threat of legal ramifications.

- We are, after all, living in “the land of the free”. Jailing people for simple drug possession, often for years or decades, flies contrary to this statement. We are fully aware that hard drugs can have a devastating effect on the lives of many, and we would never condone their usage. But we’ve clearly crossed a line in our country when simply possessing an illegal drug can have a harsher criminal sentence than crimes such as manslaughter, and can carry with it a life sentence.

 

marijuana legalized

Posted by Thomas harris on December 6, 2012 at 5:25 PM Comments comments (0)

Initiative

In plain language, here is what Initiative 502 will do:

This law legalizes the possession of marijuana for adults age 21 and older. The only marijuana that would be legal to sell in this state would be grown by specially-licensed Washington farmers and sold in standalone, marijuana-only stores operated by private Washington businesses licensed and regulated by the state. There would be a 25% sales tax, with 40% of the new revenues going to the state general fund and local budgets, and the remainder dedicated to substance-abuse prevention, research, education and health care. Advertising would be restricted. A new marijuana DUI standard that operates like the alcohol DUI standard would be established.

Here's how Initiative 502 will be described on your November 6 general election ballot:

This measure would license and regulate marijuana production, distribution, and possession for persons over twenty-one; remove state-law criminal and civil penalties for activities that it authorizes; tax marijuana sales; and earmark marijuana-related revenues. 

And here's the summary we were required to print on signature petitions to put Initiative 502 on this year's ballot:

This measure would remove state-law prohibitions against producing, processing, and selling marijuana, subject to licensing and regulation by the liquor control board; allow limited possession of marijuana by persons aged twenty-one and over; and impose 25% excise taxes on wholesale and retail sales of marijuana, earmarking revenue for purposes that include substance-abuse prevention, research, education, and healthcare.  Laws prohibiting driving under the influence would be amended to include maximum thresholds for THC blood concentration.

Download the complete text of the initiative.

 

 

Marijuana bill

Posted by Thomas harris on August 16, 2012 at 8:10 AM Comments comments (0)

SEATTLE —

 

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn on Wednesday signed a bill regulating medical marijuana like any other business.

The bill passed July 18 by the city council requires that medical marijuana operations be licensed, obtain food-handling permits if they sell marijuana cookies, and follow all other regulations such as land use codes.

 

McGinn signed the bill in front of supporters and people who worked on the effort to allow marijuana dispensaries to grow within city limits.

 

He said prohibition of marijuana for medical use simply hasn't worked and that it's led to crime, assaults and is costly. He said licensing, regulating and taxing growers as regular businesses makes more sense and provides patients a safe and secure way to get the medicine they need.

 

The city's approach contrasts with several other cities in Washington that have imposed moratoriums on such operations.

 

Medical marijuana regulations in the state have been uncertain since Gov. Chris Gregoire vetoed much of a bill that would have created a system of licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. She left in sections allowing collective medical marijuana operations.

 

Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes said the law won't guarantee people won't be prosecuted, but he said believes the law is constitutional.

 

The Seattle City Council plans to study the issue and work with specific zoning rules for dispensaries. The Council also will have continued discussions with the Police Department and local prosecutors about the new law.

 

Marijuana bill

Posted by Thomas harris on August 16, 2012 at 8:10 AM Comments comments (0)

SEATTLE —

 

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn on Wednesday signed a bill regulating medical marijuana like any other business.

The bill passed July 18 by the city council requires that medical marijuana operations be licensed, obtain food-handling permits if they sell marijuana cookies, and follow all other regulations such as land use codes.

 

McGinn signed the bill in front of supporters and people who worked on the effort to allow marijuana dispensaries to grow within city limits.

 

He said prohibition of marijuana for medical use simply hasn't worked and that it's led to crime, assaults and is costly. He said licensing, regulating and taxing growers as regular businesses makes more sense and provides patients a safe and secure way to get the medicine they need.

 

The city's approach contrasts with several other cities in Washington that have imposed moratoriums on such operations.

 

Medical marijuana regulations in the state have been uncertain since Gov. Chris Gregoire vetoed much of a bill that would have created a system of licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. She left in sections allowing collective medical marijuana operations.

 

Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes said the law won't guarantee people won't be prosecuted, but he said believes the law is constitutional.

 

The Seattle City Council plans to study the issue and work with specific zoning rules for dispensaries. The Council also will have continued discussions with the Police Department and local prosecutors about the new law.

 

Marijuana bill

Posted by Thomas harris on August 16, 2012 at 8:10 AM Comments comments (0)

SEATTLE —

 

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn on Wednesday signed a bill regulating medical marijuana like any other business.

The bill passed July 18 by the city council requires that medical marijuana operations be licensed, obtain food-handling permits if they sell marijuana cookies, and follow all other regulations such as land use codes.

 

McGinn signed the bill in front of supporters and people who worked on the effort to allow marijuana dispensaries to grow within city limits.

 

He said prohibition of marijuana for medical use simply hasn't worked and that it's led to crime, assaults and is costly. He said licensing, regulating and taxing growers as regular businesses makes more sense and provides patients a safe and secure way to get the medicine they need.

 

The city's approach contrasts with several other cities in Washington that have imposed moratoriums on such operations.

 

Medical marijuana regulations in the state have been uncertain since Gov. Chris Gregoire vetoed much of a bill that would have created a system of licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. She left in sections allowing collective medical marijuana operations.

 

Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes said the law won't guarantee people won't be prosecuted, but he said believes the law is constitutional.

 

The Seattle City Council plans to study the issue and work with specific zoning rules for dispensaries. The Council also will have continued discussions with the Police Department and local prosecutors about the new law.

 

Marijuana bill

Posted by Thomas harris on August 16, 2012 at 8:10 AM Comments comments (0)

SEATTLE —

 

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn on Wednesday signed a bill regulating medical marijuana like any other business.

The bill passed July 18 by the city council requires that medical marijuana operations be licensed, obtain food-handling permits if they sell marijuana cookies, and follow all other regulations such as land use codes.

 

McGinn signed the bill in front of supporters and people who worked on the effort to allow marijuana dispensaries to grow within city limits.

 

He said prohibition of marijuana for medical use simply hasn't worked and that it's led to crime, assaults and is costly. He said licensing, regulating and taxing growers as regular businesses makes more sense and provides patients a safe and secure way to get the medicine they need.

 

The city's approach contrasts with several other cities in Washington that have imposed moratoriums on such operations.

 

Medical marijuana regulations in the state have been uncertain since Gov. Chris Gregoire vetoed much of a bill that would have created a system of licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. She left in sections allowing collective medical marijuana operations.

 

Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes said the law won't guarantee people won't be prosecuted, but he said believes the law is constitutional.

 

The Seattle City Council plans to study the issue and work with specific zoning rules for dispensaries. The Council also will have continued discussions with the Police Department and local prosecutors about the new law.

 

Marijuana bill

Posted by Thomas harris on August 16, 2012 at 8:10 AM Comments comments (0)

SEATTLE —

 

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn on Wednesday signed a bill regulating medical marijuana like any other business.

The bill passed July 18 by the city council requires that medical marijuana operations be licensed, obtain food-handling permits if they sell marijuana cookies, and follow all other regulations such as land use codes.

 

McGinn signed the bill in front of supporters and people who worked on the effort to allow marijuana dispensaries to grow within city limits.

 

He said prohibition of marijuana for medical use simply hasn't worked and that it's led to crime, assaults and is costly. He said licensing, regulating and taxing growers as regular businesses makes more sense and provides patients a safe and secure way to get the medicine they need.

 

The city's approach contrasts with several other cities in Washington that have imposed moratoriums on such operations.

 

Medical marijuana regulations in the state have been uncertain since Gov. Chris Gregoire vetoed much of a bill that would have created a system of licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. She left in sections allowing collective medical marijuana operations.

 

Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes said the law won't guarantee people won't be prosecuted, but he said believes the law is constitutional.

 

The Seattle City Council plans to study the issue and work with specific zoning rules for dispensaries. The Council also will have continued discussions with the Police Department and local prosecutors about the new law.

 

marijuana from category I to III at a federal level

Posted by Thomas harris on April 1, 2011 at 12:38 PM Comments comments (0)

DEA Proposes Moving THC From Schedule I to III on List of Controlled Substances

posted by gatekeeper50

So who will benefit most from this proposal if implemented by the Obama administration? BIG PHARMA, Of Cooourse, but I have had two standards by which Barack Obama's presidency should be measured:

#1 has the Obama DOJ begun criminal proceedings against any Bush administration official guilty of torture and war crimes --- so far that one's a big fail. But,

#2 has Obama moved cannabis off Schedule 1 and the answer to that appears it may be ding, ding, ding, Yes, For the (Partial) Win --- and even though it will still take a doctor's prescription to get a "bag" at least all doctors will feel it legitimate to prescribe THC as readily as they hand out anti-depressants today. The major drawback to the current recommendation is that the plant would still be Schedule 1, so a lot of work still needs to be done on the total legalization of a plant indigenous to all continents.

Now progressives need to make the big push to legalize the production of hemp for all the benefits it will bring to the US economy from alternative energy sources to food supplements.

Oregon became the latest state and the first in many years to officially reclassify marijuana from its status as a dangerous drug with no medical value. The Oregon Board of Pharmacy (BOP) voted 4-1 today to move marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule II. The Oregon BOP decision comes after many months of deliberation and input from the public. The Oregon legislature passed SB 728 in August 2009, which directed the BOP to reclassify marijuana to Schedule II, III, IV or V. Although Oregon and 13 other states have adopted medical marijuana laws, marijuana has officially remained a Schedule I substance according to the federal government, and most states defer to that federal status.

“This latest decision by a state public health and drug regulatory body to reclassify marijuana as medicine should send a clear message to the federal government,” said Caren Woodson, Director of Government Affairs with Americans for Safe Access, a medical marijuana patient advocacy organization. “The reclassification of marijuana at the federal level is long overdue and certainly ripe for consideration.”

Under the Controlled Substances Act, enacted in 1970, the federal government placed marijuana in a Schedule I classification, with a high potential for abuse and no medical value. Several attempts have since been made to reclassify marijuana at the federal level. A petition filed in 2002 by the Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis, is the latest attempt and currently pending before the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently made its recommendations to the DEA, the final agency to review the petition. Acting DEA Administrator Michele Leonhart, who still must be confirmed by the Senate, is the final remaining arbiter as to the rescheduling petition’s fate.

“DEA Administrator Leonhart has a less than impressive record on medical marijuana,” continued Woodson. “But, with the changing political winds on this issue, the Obama Administration has a chance to do the right thing for the hundreds of thousands of sick Americans that benefit from medical marijuana.”

Although only four states – Alaska, Iowa, Montana, and Tennessee and the District of Columbia – have classified marijuana as a therapeutic substance, there appears to be a trend to change that. In addition to today’s decision, the Iowa Board of Pharmacy recommended in February that its legislature reclassify marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule II, thereby recognizing its medical use. While such moves are more symbolic than practical, especially in medical marijuana states like Oregon, it does tend to reinforce the argument that marijuana has medical value. By law, the Oregon BOP has until June 30th to implement the new rules.

Related Posts:

•Iowa Moves Marijuana From Schedule I to Schedule II Today, the Iowa Board of Pharmacy has reclassified marijuana as ...

•Iowa Board of Pharmacy Must Release Marijuana Findings I received an e-mail earlier today from one of my ...

•Medical Marijuana in Iowa? Is Iowa set to become the 15th state to approve ...

•Iowa Board of Pharmacy to Discuss Medical Marijuana The great Carl Olsen from Iowa sent me this. ...

..http://www.scribd.com/doc/45311129/DEA-RESCHEDULING-OF-NATURE-THC-FROM-CLASS-I-TO-CLASS-III-WHAT-DOES-THIS-MEAN-TO-YOU


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