Media Awareness Project Drug News
  1. US PA: PUB LTE: Drug Abuse Is A Health, Not Crime, Problem

    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 19 Jun 2016 - When are we going to get past all these drug arrests and imprisonments, repeated year after year without stemming their use ("With Addiction Primed by Pain Pills, Heroin Dealers Move In," June 12)? Can't we stop treating drugs as a crime problem, rather than a health problem? We stopped treating alcohol usage and sale as a crime over 90 years ago. As Michael Botticelli, the White House's director of national drug control policy, admitted recently: "We can't arrest and incarcerate addiction out of people .... It's really inhumane, ineffective, and costs us billions of dollars." Your article cites Gary Tuggle, DEA head in Philadelphia, as saying that "eight of 10 heroin addicts start out as oxycodone users." Now the public should see that opioid prescription pain pills addict many Americans, often older people, some of whom turn to heroin when they can no longer get prescription refills. Thus, we should realize that drug addiction is not a problem of the young or people of color. The "war on drugs" has devastated black communities. "Although the majority of illegal drug users and dealers nationwide are white, three-fourths of all people imprisoned for drug offenses have been black or Latino" wrote Michelle Alexander in her book "The New Jim Crow."
  2. US PA: Parents Caught In Medical Pot's Legal Crossfire

    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 19 Jun 2016 - Prohibited From Taking Drug Across State Lines Parents hoping to treat seriously ill children with medical marijuana cheered when Pennsylvania's new law included a "safe harbor" provision allowing them to import the medicines right away, rather than waiting for the law to take full effect in two years.
  3. US PA: Pa. Medical Marijuana Catch-22

    The Philadelphia Inquirer, 14 Jun 2016 - It Can't Be Bought Here Legally, and Federal Law Bars Bringing It In. Parents hoping to treat seriously ill children with medical marijuana cheered when Pennsylvania's new law included a "safe harbor" provision allowing them to import the medicines right away, rather than waiting for the law to take full effect in two years.
  4. US PA: Editorial: Treatment, Not Imprisonment

    Standard-Speaker, 12 Jun 2016 - The high costs of incarceration have prompted most states and the federal government to reduce their prison populations. Now, according to the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University School of Law, there is evidence that doing so does not increase crime. Researchers analyzed prison and crime data from all 50 states between 2006, when the reform movement began, through 2014, the most recent year for which data are complete. They found that in 27 states that have decreased their prison populations, crime also has decreased.
  5. US PA: Column: A Gateway To Gardening?

    The Reporter, 09 Jun 2016 - On May 17, Pennsylvania's Medical Marijuana Act (Act 16) went into effect, bringing me one step closer to the realization of a dream. I don't have a personal medical need for marijuana, nor am I looking forward to being able to legally smoke it; I've never been interested. No, as a "certifiable plant geek" my dream is to be able to try my hand at growing this intriguing, illicit plant with the distinctive leaves. To me, it's paradoxical that marijuana is off-limits. Poison ivy is a threat to many people, responsible for countless collective hours of itching, oozing, blistered misery, trips to the doctor, steroid use, and days missed from work. Despite all this, it grows freely almost everywhere. You can have it on your property and no one will come arrest you.
  6. US PA: Officials Set Medical Marijuana Regulation Priorities

    Standard-Speaker, 08 Jun 2016 - HARRISBURG - Children with serious medical conditions will have first access to legal medical marijuana in Pennsylvania, possibly as soon as next month, state Health Secretary Karen Murphy said Wednesday. Murphy, R.N., Ph.D., a Scranton native, outlined the department's plans to write temporary regulations so those children under the age of 18 and their caregivers can obtain medical marijuana in other states where it's legal while Pennsylvania's new medical marijuana law is fully implemented.
  7. US PA: Early Prep For Pa. Pot Law

    The Philadelphia Inquirer, 03 Jun 2016 - Experts in Several Fields Are Getting Ready Years Ahead of Medical-Marijuana Sales. Medical marijuana won't be available in Pennsylvania for at least two years, yet politicians, academics, and entrepreneurs are already scrambling to brand themselves as industry leaders and experts.
  8. US PA: Enter Pot, Exit Opioids

    Daily Times, 25 May 2016 - ENTER POT, EXIT OPIOIDS Can the legalization of one drug help decrease abuse of another drug? It's possible that medical marijuana could be used to fight the epidemic of opioid addiction that has resulted in numerous deaths from overdoses in Pennsylvania and throughout the United States.
  9. US PA: Weeding Through The Issues

    Daily Times, 25 May 2016 - Role As Medicine Remains Controversial Medical marijuana has been legalized in Pennsylvania, as well as 23 other states and the District of Columbia, but there are still many questions about how exactly the drug can be used as medicine.