Category Archives: Marijuana Policy

Minnesota hemp and marijuana legislation.

Admin; Sigh…This lawmaker should be more concerned about tobacco and alcohol; oh-wait, maybe those are his biggest political donations.

Lawmaker worries that hemp would lead to legal marijuana in Minnesota

By Don Davis
Forum News Service

POSTED:   04/08/2015 12:01:00 AM CDT | UPDATED:   ABOUT 6 HOURS AGO

If Minnesota approves limited industrial hemp growth, a state senator with a long-time law enforcement background fears recreational marijuana use will be close behind.

“To me, it is baby steps toward recreational marijuana and I think we will find that out by the end of the session,” Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen, R-Alexandria, said Wednesday after a committee approved a bill to allow hemp to be grown by researchers.

Ingebrigtsen predicted attempts will be made to amend the hemp bill to include recreational marijuana use. Minnesota law allows a limited use of medical marijuana, but recreational use remains illegal.

Sen. Kent Eken, DFL-Twin Valley, brought the hemp bill to the Senate Environment, Economic Development and Agriculture Finance Division.

Minnesota state Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen, R-Alexandria. (Minnesota Senate photo)

Minnesota state Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen, R-Alexandria. (Minnesota Senate photo)

It would allow limited growth of hemp as part of a study, with the intention of eventually launching an industry with widespread hemp production.

Eken said farmers in his area of northwestern Minnesota would especially benefit from growing hemp, which can be made into products as varied as clothing and cooking oil. Hemp already is grown just north of Minnesota in Canada, Eken said, and $625 million worth of products made there are sold in the United States.

The senator said that manufacturing plants would sprout in Minnesota if hemp were allowed.

“Honestly, I have not had a bunch of farmers come through my door … and say we need this commodity in Minnesota,” said Ingebrigtsen, a former Douglas County sheriff who has opposed hemp growth whenever it has been debated in the Legislature.

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Committee Chairman David Tomassoni, DFL-Chisholm, said that he has not heard there will be an attempt to legalize recreational marijuana through Eken’s bill. However, he said, an attempt could be made in a committee to change the hemp measure.

Tomassoni said that testimony in his committee showed that hemp and marijuana, while related and look similar, are not compatible growing near each other, so he does not see the connection that Ingebrigtsen sees.

Many law enforcement officials oppose legalizing hemp because it looks so much like marijuana that they say the illegal plant could be hidden within a hemp field.

Thom Petersen of Minnesota Farmers Union said the only legal problem Canada had when it legalized hemp years ago was that people would steal it out of fields. They were disappointed when they tried to smoke it and it did not give them a high, Petersen said, adding that the thefts only lasted a year or two.

Tomassoni’s committee will continue to consider another bill debated Wednesday: to fund a study of Minnesota and nearby states’ livestock and poultry industry for the past 10 years. The bill requires the state agriculture commissioner to use the study to tell lawmakers how they can best help strengthen and expand the Minnesota animal agriculture industry.

No one objected to the study, but Sen. Scott Dibble, DFL-Minneapolis, raised concerns when Sen. Bill Weber, R-Luverne, successfully added an amendment to study how lawsuits affect farmers.

Dibble said he could not support the overall bill if the Weber provision is included. It would require a state-conducted study of impacts from lawsuits about items such as farm dust and manure odor. He said the bill incorporating the study carries with it “a forgone conclusion that these lawsuits are not warranted.”

Tomassoni, however, said he does not think the Weber provision will kill the bill.

“It will be worked out,” Tomassoni said of the dispute.

Tomassoni’s committee also considered a measure that could be folded into a larger bill to spend $100,000 over the next two years to help farmers and agribusinesses export products to Cuba.

 

http://www.twincities.com/localnews/ci_27876792/lawmaker-worries-that-hemp-would-lead-legal-marijuana

Marijuana legalization discussed in this balanced opinion by a retired banker.

Admin; Excellent article well written to present both sides of the argument. Bob Roper makes the case that civil liberties for Americans have also been eroded and money wasted on the war against marijuana.

Should we legalize marijuana?

By BOB ROPER

Sunday, December 14, 2014 at 12:00 am Comments (1)

On Nov. 4, voters in Oregon and Alaska passed initiatives legalizing recreational marijuana. This, of course, follows Colorado and Washington state, whose voters did the same not long ago. The trend is obvious — and hardly surprising considering in a recent poll Americans said, by 56 percent to 44 percent, that marijuana should be legalized provided it is appropriately regulated, as with alcohol.

There is a great irony here. Just as the legalization trend accelerates, maybe to the point of being unstoppable, the accumulated medical and scientific evidence proving marijuana is in fact a dangerous drug is overwhelming. Here are some of the studies and useful facts: Continue reading

Insightful marijuana comments by Houston Police chief Charles McClelland.

Houston police chief sounds off on pot arrests

Chief Charles McClelland also takes aim at decades-long war on drugs

Author: Keith Garvin, Anchor/Reporter, kgarvin@kprc.com

Published On: Dec 05 2014 10:54:42 PM CST Updated On: Dec 05 2014 11:02:04 PM CST

HPD chief sounds off on pot arrests

HOUSTON –

Houston Police Chief Charles McClelland is making national headlines after indicating it may be time for marijuana use to be legalized not only in Texas but across the country.

“We cannot criminalize such a large population of society that engage in casual marijuana use,” the chief said in the radio interview. The topics were wide-ranging — but the chief was largely asked about marijuana use. McClelland made it clear he believes enforcing marijuana laws is wasting time and other valuable resources.

“Taxpayers can’t afford to build jails and prisons to lock up everyone that commits a crime,” said McClelland. “We must put more money into crime prevention, treatment, education, job training.” Continue reading

Marijuana legalization may be coveted by Big Tobacco.

Admin; Big Tobacco may very well welcome marijuana legalization.  This articles documents that Big Tobacco has been interested in marijuana since 1969.

Here’s What It Will Take For The Marlboro Of Marijuana To Emerge

 

YzU1Y2EzZGZiNSMvbWhWWGMyLWlaMDdtcDFyY2VONkFOa0U5WDlZPS8weDY3OjcwMHg1MDgvODQweDUzMC9zMy5hbWF6b25hd3MuY29tL3BvbGljeW1pYy1pbWFnZXMvZmU5MWFlNzg5ZGMzZDVmZWNlY2JlNDFmMDMxNTQzZDI0MmZiNDI4ODIyZTc1MzgzMWIxYTFlYWQ5ZTQ2NWZjNy5qcGc=Abril UnoFake news website ‘Abril Uno’ recently published a story titled ‘Phillip Morris Introduces Marlboro Marijuana Cigarettes’

 

The legal cannabis industry is run by minnows. As liberalisation spreads, that may not last

“FRESH and fruity, right?” says a bright-eyed young man behind the counter, wafting an open jar of something called “AK-47” under Schumpeter’s nose. “Whereas with this one”,–unscrewing another jar, fanning the scent up to his nostrils and closing his eyes in concentration–“I’m getting notes of dill.”

Drug dealers aren’t what they used to be.

In Colorado, which in January became the first place in the world fully to legalise cannabis, buying a joint feels more like visiting a trendy craft-brewery than a drug den. Dispensaries along Denver’s “green mile” are packed with young, bearded men earnestly discussing the merits of strains with names like “Bio-Jesus” and “Death Star”. Some varieties claim to be inspirational, while others say they promote relaxation, or “couch-lock”, as the tokers call it.

Colorado’s pot industry expects to rack up sales of $1 billion this year. Across America the market is reckoned to be worth about 40 times that much. Most of it is still illegal, of course. But slowly, entrepreneurs are prising it out of the hands of crime gangs. Nearly half the 50 states permit the sale of marijuana to medical patients, which in practice may include anyone willing to fake a back problem.

This week Oregon and Alaska joined Colorado and Washington in legalising it for recreational purposes, too. If other countries legalise, as Uruguay already has, it could open up a global cannabis market worth perhaps $100 billion a year (by the best guesses, which are stabs in the dark). Continue reading

Marijuana legalization; YES!

Marijuana legislation; Let’s see…

Light up, take a drag, contemplate…

afp-pot-hits-new-ballot-high-as-america-votes

Guam passes medical marijuana by 12 point margin!

Washington, DC passes legalization measure by more than the projected 2:1!

Oregon passes legalized marijuana by 10 point margin!

Alaska passes!

Florida did not pass…(they would have needed a 60% margin to pass). Boohoo!

More Michigan communities passed marijuana decriminalization.

Obviously Colorado and Washington state passage two years ago was not an anomaly.

A lot of new legislation will line up by 2016 to end nationwide Marijuana prohibition.

BTW New York has suspended “Buy and Bust” program.

Hello-The White House; anyone there listening?

 

 

Medical Marijuana support in court by doctors

Admin; this will be interesting to watch how the doctors testimony in the California courtroom plays out. This sort of court case would have been unimaginable just a few years ago…

War on marijuana unconstitutional, doctors testify in federal court Monday

Posted on October 21, 2014 at 11:23 am by David Downs in featured, Health, Legal, Science

The federal government tries to justify its war on marijuana Monday

The U.S. government claims marijuana is a dangerous, addictive drug with no medical benefits. But that claim will be up for debate Monday in California when a federal judge is scheduled to hear testimony from doctors that conclude the opposite.

Doctors Carl Hart, Associate Professor of Psychology at Columbia University, retired physician Phillip Denny, and Greg Carter, Medical Director of St. Luke’s Rehabilitation Institute in Spokane, Washington will testify Monday that marijuana — real name, “cannabis” — is not the demon drug the federal government makes it out to be. Accepted science does not justify the listing of cannabis as a dangerous “Schedule I” substance, many say.

“[I]t is my considered opinion that including marijuana in Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act is counter to all the scientific evidence in a society that uses and values empirical evidence,” Dr. Hart declared. “After two decades of intense scientific inquiry in this area, it has become apparent the current scheduling of cannabis has no footing in the realities of science and neurobiology.”

This is an unprecedented hearing, writes cannabis law reform advocate Paul Armentano, deputy director of NORML.

“This is the first time in recent memory that a federal judge has granted an evidentiary hearing on a motion challenging the statute which classifies cannabis to be one of the most dangerous illicit substances in the nation.”

Attorneys Zenia Gilg and Heather Burke write that “In effect, the action taken by the Department of Justice is either irrational, or more likely proves … [that] marijuana does not fit the criteria of a Schedule I Controlled Substance.”

Testimony for the evidentiary hearing of United States v. Pickard, et. al., should last three days.

Government witness Bertha Madras, former White House Drug Czar deputy director under George W. Bush will defend the Schedule 1 designation. Madras states cannabis has no accepted medical use and is unsafe.

Madras states she supports the pharmaceuticalization of THC and CBD, while criminalizing the use of the plant they come from.

“Although more than 30% of current therapeutic drugs are plant-derived, no one currently eats or smokes foxglove plants to treat a heart condition, chews cinchona bark to alleviate malaria symptoms, or eats opium poppies to relieve post-surgical pain,” Madras writes.

In places where medical marijuana is legal, folks have moved on from smoking it to vaporization, edibles, tinctures, and topicals. About one in 20 California adults are estimated to have used medical marijuana for a serious illness, according to the most recent survey data. Ninety-two percent of them are estimated to believe cannabis was helpful for their condition.

Critics of Madras note the government has actually patented cannabis for use in stroke therapy.

Smoked or eaten cannabis also has no overdose level. Conversely, “medically accepted” prescription pills will kill about 22,114 people from drug overdose this year.

President Richard Nixon placed cannabis in Schedule 1 in 1970, overruling the recommendations of his own National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse, which found “little proven danger of physical or psychological harm from the experimental or intermittent use of the natural preparations of cannabis.”

http://blog.sfgate.com/smellthetruth/2014/10/21/war-on-marijuana-unconstitutional-doctors-testify-in-federal-court-monday/

Thank you Matt Ferner for this update from the alcohol millionaire’s opinion of legalizing marijuana-by the A64 voting citizens.

Admin;  Follow the link for the link to Matt Ferner’s  article about Hickenloopers backtracking.  Mr. Alcohol is trying to covering his *ss.

Matt Ferner HeadshotMatt.Ferner@huffingtonpost.com

Gov. John Hickenlooper: Legalizing Marijuana In Colorado Wasn’t ‘Reckless,’ It Was ‘Risky’

Posted: 10/07/2014 8:46 pm EDT Updated: 10/08/2014 12:59 pm EDT

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) said Tuesday his state’s recreational marijuana law is not “reckless,” as he called it a day earlier, but “risky.”

“Context is everything,” Hickenlooper said in a statement, first reported by International Business Times. “I was asked if I thought it was [emphasis Hickenlooper’s office] reckless to legalize marijuana in Colorado -– perhaps risky is a better word. While I believe it was risky for Colorado to be the first state to step away from a failed federal policy given all of the unanswered legal questions and implications, the adoption of Amendment 64 by Colorado voters sent a clear message to the federal government that marijuana should be legal and regulated.”

“Is it risky now?” the governor asked. “It is certainly less so. We have a robust regulatory enforcement system that would not have been possible without the partnership of the marijuana business owners, activists, law enforcement officials, regulators, parents, policy experts and stakeholders. Together we have worked tirelessly to ensure a safe and fair system that protects the public health, diminishes the underground market, and educates and keeps marijuana out of the hands of our children.”

Hickenlooper said the state remains committed to carrying out the will of voters, obtaining access to banking for marijuana businesses, and maintaining a fair regulatory system.

On Monday, Hickenlooper was asked during a gubernatorial debate about other state governors who may be considering legalizing marijuana.

“I would view it as reckless before we see what the consequences are” in Colorado, Hickenlooper said. His Republican challenger, Bob Beauprez, agreed with the “reckless” characterization,according to Politico.

The governor later expanded on the state’s legalization, saying: “I think for us to do that without having all the data, there is not enough data, and to a certain extent you could say it was reckless.”

“I’m not saying it was reckless, because I’ll get quoted everywhere,” Hickenlooper added. “But if it was up to me, I wouldn’t have done it, right. I opposed it from the very beginning. All right, what the hell — I’ll say it was reckless.” Continue reading

Marijuana legalization; latest polls

Admin; Legalization is on a roll!

How marijuana legalization became a majority movement

Updated by German Lopez on October 1, 2014, 10:00 a.m. ET @germanrlopez german@vox.com

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A marijuana plant under a black light.RJ Sangosti / Denver Post via Getty Images

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In just a few years, marijuana legalization advocates have gone from being part of a long-shot movement to representative of a view held by 58 percent of Americans.

The quick trajectory of this type of social movement is far from exclusive to legal pot. In recent years, the same-sex marriage movement in particular has been characterized by a rapid change in public opinion and multiple court decisions in favor of marriage equality.

But unlike same-sex marriage, marijuana legalization doesn’t have much establishment support. Politicians and lawmakers have remained as far away from the issue as possible even as retail sales for marijuana began in Colorado and Washington earlier in the year. The only major Supreme Court decision on the issue (Gonzales v. Raich) allowed the federal government to continue enforcing prohibition in California even after the state’s voters legalizedmedical marijuana.

The political caution and lack of judicial intervention might explain why marijuana legalization hasn’t progressed as swiftly as public opinion. But there are some indications that could change — if the movement overcomes some key hurdles.

Legalization has relied on popular support in a few states, but that could change

end the war on drugs protester

A protester calls for an end to the war on drugs. (Spencer Platt / Getty Images News)

Fabio Rojas, a professor at Indiana University who studies social movements, said that these movements tend to be driven by ballot initiatives, lobbying of policymakers, or mass protests that raise awareness.

Up to this point, the marijuana legalization movement has largely relied on ballot initiatives to change state laws. Colorado and Washington voters legalized marijuana at the polls in 2012, and legalization measures are on the ballot in Alaska, Oregon, and Washington, DC, in November. Continue reading

Marijuana organizations provide free medical marijuana and seeds when government won’t for Ptsd veterans.

Admin; This will eventually get straightened out.  The train is headed in a different direction than 20 years ago…

1000 Veterans Line up for Free Marijuana

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Sep 28, 2014, 2:22 PM ET

GROW 4 VETS

Extracting Innovations COO Seth Cox shows Navy veteran Hikima Nukes how to make active butter for edibles at the Grow 4 Vets cannabis giveaway at the DoubleTree Hotel Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014 in Colorado Springs, Colo. Veterans who RSVPed for the… View Full CaptionThe Associated Press

Associated Press

A marijuana giveaway for veterans attracted about 1,000 people to a Colorado hotel.

The “Grow 4 Vets” giveaway in Colorado Springs aimed to bring cannabis-based treatments to veterans with service-related conditions as an alternative to pain medications.

The Gazette reports ( http://bit.ly/1xsCAFJ ) that veterans were given a bag of items that included cannabis oil, an edible chocolate bar and seeds to grow plants.

Marijuana activists have tried unsuccessfully to have post-traumatic stress disorder added to the Colorado list of medical conditions that qualify for joining the medical marijuana registry. Now that pot is legal for all adults over 21, organizers are free to give away marijuana.

Not all who received the bags were veterans. A $20 dollar donation from nonveterans was encouraged.

A similar event was held last weekend in Denver.

http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/1000-veterans-line-free-marijuana-25818787

Eric Holder Resigns; let’s appoint someone who will help push this reform even further.

Admin; We’ve come farther than a lot of people probably suspected, but there’s still plenty of work to do. With the right Attorney General in place, we can all keep the ball rolling forward, for America’s best interest. If you care to share your voice, please sign the petition below, so other members of office can better represent the people. holder resigns Today Attorney General Eric Holder announced that he will be resigning from office once a replacement is found. Continue reading