Study: Arrests For Marijuana Offenses Increasing In Many States

Study: Arrests For Marijuana Offenses Increasing In Many StatesLaw enforcement in many states are making a greater number of marijuana arrests than ever before despite polling data showing that the majority of Americans believe that the adult use of the plant ought to be legal.

According to a just published report, “Marijuana in the States 2012: Analysis and Detailed Data on Marijuana Use and Arrests,” which appears on the newly launched RegulatingCannabis.com website, police made an estimated 750,000 arrests for marijuana violations in 2012 – a 110 percent increase in annual arrests since 1991. Yet, despite this doubling in annual marijuana arrests over the past two decades, there has not been any significant reduction in marijuana consumption in the United States the report found.

In 2012, marijuana arrests accounted for almost half (48.3 percent) of all drug arrests nationwide. Marijuana arrests accounted for two-thirds of more of all drug arrests in five states: Nebraska (74.1 percent), New Hampshire (72 percent), Montana (70.3 percent), Wyoming (68.7 percent) and Wisconsin (67.1 percent).

From 2008 to 2012, seventeen state-level jurisdictions experienced an average annual increase in marijuana arrests, the report found. South Carolina (11.6 percent) and the District of Columbia (7.7 percent) experienced the highest overall percentage increase in arrests during this time period. By contrast, annual marijuana arrests fell nationwide by an average of 3.3 percent from 2008 to 2012.

Overall, the study reported that the five state-level jurisdictions possessing the highest arrest rates for marijuana offenses are the District to Columbia (729 arrests per 100,000 citizens), New York (577), Louisiana (451), Illinois (447) and Nebraska (421). District of Columbia lawmakers decriminalized the adult possession of marijuana earlier this month.

The two states possessing the lowest marijuana arrest rates are California and Massachusetts, the report found. Both states decriminalized marijuana possession offenses in recent years.

Stated the report’s author, Shenondoah University professor Jon Gettman, “After a generation of marijuana arrests, nearly 19 million and counting since 1981, the results are that marijuana remains widely used, not perceived as risky by a majority of the population, and widely available. The tremendous variance in use and arrests at the state level demonstrate why marijuana prohibition has failed and is not a viable national policy.”

Full text of the report is available on the NORML website here or from: RegulatingCannabis.com.

109 thoughts

  1. I’ve watched this horror story for over 50 years. Finally, the populace (with NORML’s) wonderful help is putting enough pressure on our legislators to educate them to realize that marijuana is a safe substance for medical and recreational use. This substance, in ALL recorded history, has NEVER killed anyone! Law Enforcement has made billions off its illegality for many decades, and now that they see it coming to an end they’re going to try and make every dollar they can off it until it IS legalized. The Federal government needs to realize we’re tired of it, and needs to FINALLY end this ridiculous prohibition NOW!!!

  2. The jig is up. No longer is the government successful at spending billions for prohibition and putting out false information that marijuana is the scourge of our society. On the contrary, there is no substance on Earth that has more medical applications — none, along with the least amount of side effects.

    This entire campaign for the last 70-plus years has been a ruse that was contrived by our government and its bedmates; big business and big pharma.

    It’s time that the populous gets its wish and right to freedom of choice as to whether to legally use or not use. The government actually is starting to see that it can’t dummy down the majority of Americans who are just as smart, or even smarter than many of the people in office that represents them.

    This issue of cannabis has always been a joke but the Big Machine was always successful at keeping the draconian and unjust laws intact. Well, the masses now are speaking (and voting) more than ever. Enough is enough Big Government. Quit trying to control our choices to live the way we wish to live. Hold people accountable when someone threatens, impinges, impedes or victimizes another citizen’s right to living their own life; but when someone chooses to live their life without bothering anyone else, it’s time you leave that person alone.

    Once again, enough is enough, Big Brother. Spend your time (which actually is OUR time and OUR money) on issues that really matter to our society. Go fight the fight against real crime — not someone who is not bothering anyone else.

  3. Very well said……..it’s time for the Federal Govt to immediately re-classify Marijuna…..It actually does have medical beneifts for people who suffer from Cancer,chronic pain and so many more….

  4. In these years of tight budgets, the enforcers seize property to sweeten their budgets.
    Stop the seizures by supporting Sen. Rand Paul’s bill. It is S. 2644, the FAIR
    (Fifth Amendment Integrity Restoration) Act, which would protect the rights of citizens and restore the Fifth Amendment’s role in seizing
    property without due process of law.

  5. WOW! 19 MILLION arrests made since 1981! Just think about all of the wasted time, energy, money, resources and lives this horrific law has destroyed! The police and the DEA could have been out working to solve REAL crimes and focusing their little war on real hard, soul-stealing drugs like heroin and cocaine.
    Marijuana should have always been placed in the category with Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms; and of the four, MARIJUANA is the least offensive and safest – and yet it is still the one that is illegal! Am I the only one in this entire country that has any common sense? Of course not; so if you are reading this then rise up against this hypocrisy and end the nightmare! If your politicians won’t do the right thing by legalizing marijuana, then vote them out of office! Enough is enough.

  6. Unfortunately in California Fresno County Sheriff Mims has some backdoor deals with God knows who to keep excessive spending to investigate raid steal from and rough up anyone involved with cannabis along with two or three other neighboring counties. The policy is also to turn a blind eye on meth, while the root of the problem is deep embeded drug cartels that have money and control in every level of society to every level of government to average Joe citizen. It’s time to rid our nation of drug cartels from Mexico and Central/South America.
    While Mexican kingpins destroy families and communities and our government in Fresno County. Fresno Sheriff openly refuses to abide by state law concerning cannabis. Fresno County needs to go outright no law on cannabis use or personal grows. Let the AG department handle large farms and open up industrial hemp farming, and open up factories. Time to revive our nation really get a grip on drug problems by ridding our nation of the cartels from Mexico and south of our border. Destroy the black market. And really go to war with drug cartels by sending our troops into Mexico central/south America and destroy the cartels and get complete control of drug trade by making it a legit business. Get real end the waste and ugly drug war. Then after we rebuild Mexico into a nice clean place along our border for the first 200 miles south all the way across.

  7. Taking people to jail over this plant is sad. I pay 30 to 80 K in taxes each year. I’m not a criminal and I don’t have drunken rages. I fish and mind my own bussiness. I enjoy this beautiful plant.

  8. I don’t mean to keep capping down on the GOP; but my god they so often give me little choice.

    In my state of NM, a group called ProgressNow collected signatures in the cities of Albuquerque and Santa Fe to reduce MJ penalties. In Albq, 16,000 signatures were collected. However, after they were turned in, a GOP city councilor, Don Harris, “asked,” so quotes ProgressNow, “the city attorney to ‘reread’ the law and change the number his office certified to start the campaign.”

    In Santa Fe, the city council is considering putting a reduction of MJ penalties on the upcoming ballot. “But,” again according to ProgressNow, “Republicans aren’t waiting to try to stop it. Yesterday, a representative from the Republican Party was in the clerk’s office copying personal voter information on every single person who signed in a pre-emptive challenge to the measure.”

    Seems these prohibitionist dinosaurs refuse to go away. They’re obviously feeling emboldened with the mid-terms coming up, and with the MSM assuring us all that the GOP will make huge gains. Our TP governor, Susannah Martinez, sure isn’t helping matters, and I hope for her defeat in the upcoming elections.

    To anyone living in NM, I urge you to vote in November. The difference in you spending time or not in a local prison may just depend on it.

  9. the war on drugs is not a war on drugs, but a war on the American people. it is a violation of our civil rights. the prohibition of marijuana is in violation of the Constitution of the United States and, as such, is null and void. the law is illegal.
    the prohibition of marijuana financially supports organized crime. why is “our” government in cahoots with the drug cartels (allowing them to monopolize the marijuana business) when legitimate businesses within our own borders are crying for a piece of what is by all rights (if you exclude “our” government’s interference) a legitimate business enterprise.
    and it is unjust to arrest, try and imprison any person who is harming no one, but who possesses marijuana. “our” government has “forgotten” what our prisons are really for.
    this marijuana prohibition is the very kind of thing for which our forefathers fought the war of independence. our forefathers actually grew marijuana.
    it is our choice whether or not we smoke marijuana, not the government’s. it is time for our government to actually be our government, and not Big Brother.

  10. A high arrest rate is understandable. The attitude toward weed has relaxed and more people are smoking. The laws haven’t really changed. The law dogs are know that changes are coming and they know they’re going to loose the revenue.

  11. WHEN WILL TEXAS WAKE UP & LEGALIZE MEDICINAL USE OF MARIJUANA ? IF OUR STATE GOV. WOULD LEGALIZE , IT WOULD STOP CARTELS DEALING IN POT & ALLOW MONEY , FROM TAXES , TO BE USED TO HELP SECURE THE BORDERS FROM SMUGGLEING COKE , SMACK , & GOD KNOWS WHATELESE ACROSS THE BORDER!

  12. ? when will the info become obvious these “temporary” people move around and are there because they want a piece of the pie. be it politicians, cops, dea, pharm, jails, lawyers, etc. how dare they stand in the way of the majority of people’s wishes? lies, corruption, pay offs, handouts,wars they create. pot, well i’ve smoked for 40 years. moved to a small town 7 years ago in ohio. its sad that people have been made to distrust by our own governmment. divide and conquer. so much lost possibilities!

  13. Problem is, that there is too much money being made by prosecution of marijuana. From arrest to court. Here in Florida there are so many people incarcerated because of it. Happy to say, according to news reports, 88% agree that medical is going to be a good thing, and over 50% believe recreational use is not bad either.

  14. Honestly, big government shouldnt be able to control us people this way. Im almost certain thats what the constitution was instated to keep from happening. Not long ago there would be war because of this!

  15. Its because the more people they arrest. The more they hope it will make people think that marijuana is the problem. Its not. Its cops. Cops that love exploiting their authority, cops that want to force their will on others. They have a personal issue with marijuana and think everyone who uses it, needs to be punished for not conforming.

  16. All this angst could end tomorrow if the millenials would wake up and vote! There are so many young people today who realize that this plant should be legal but do they even register? NO. They tell me “I don’t think my vote matters.” Well, whose does then? The reason public opinion and laws change is because younger generations grow up and finally get a say. I wish our young people would at least try.

  17. @Sylvie
    Bibold “voting machines” ended the “right to vote” in the USA. It’s been PROVEN that those machines are capable of “flipping” votes with the flick of a switch. No paper record of actual votes cast is the PROOF.

  18. @Sylvie
    EDIT
    Dibold “voting machines” ended the “right to vote” in the USA. It’s been PROVEN that those machines are capable of “flipping” votes with the flick of a switch. No paper record of actual votes cast is the PROOF.

  19. “Honestly, big government shouldnt be able to control us people this way. Im almost certain thats what the constitution was instated to keep from happening. Not long ago there would be war because of this!”

    Err, umm… There is a war and it is being waged against America’s future. It is called The War on Drugs. They made a bet that Americans are too stupid to remember their own Constitution. So far, they have been winning their shitty underhanded bet. Let see, they made marijuana illegal just to profit off the non-crimes of marijuana users. And to increase real crime by creating a massive black market. What else is going to happen when you ban one of the most useful plants on the planet? What is the difference between this and Insider Trading? Hmm? The system is rigged and unjust. They make money and take money thru lies and deceit. Null and void; it is now return our money and void all bogus convictions.

  20. @Joe. “Dibold “voting machines” ended the “right to vote” in the USA. It’s been PROVEN that those machines are capable of “flipping” votes with the flick of a switch. No paper record of actual votes cast is the PROOF.”

    Wow, and here is some more propaganda designed to get kids to believe their votes don’t count. Thanks for Nothing Joe.

    http://www.darklyrics.com/lyrics/overkill/horrorscope.html#4

    “Thanks for nothin’
    Yeah I said nothin’
    Next time better think before you speak.”

  21. until we change the seizure laws and have the federal goverment quit sending states money for locking up people,it will never be nation wide legal, jails are big buisness in a lot of states and the fed gives money to the states for every prisoner they lock up,towns across america love seizure laws,they are making tons of money stealing money from its citizens ,the real crimminals are the judges and poloticians,till we change the sezure laws and have the fed quit feeding the states jails ,it will never be legal its a cash cow for most towns

  22. Some states are just trying to beat the people back into submission and forget this whole legalization thing.

  23. We who write here are just the tip of the iceberg. Only we’re not cold hearted marijuana prohibitionists. The articles educate and the comments are generally right on. And for everyone who comments here there are probably 10,000 people reading it, who won’t write a comment because they don’t like to write, or they’re afraid. Why be afraid? Why not – the NSA tracks everything anyways, even your nude private digital photos (fact – see the story on my blog).

    My point… represented here are 720,000 people… the logic in most cases is impeccable and true.

    Examples: “It’s the laws against marijuana that hurt!” It’s Unconstitutional” – I posted an article myself where in the state of NH, Article 83 expressly prohibits laws against infringement on agriculture, the arts, sciences, education and knowledge.

    The War on Drugs, particularly marijuana seems a sort of Marshall Law, an over the top infringement based on a fantastical argument codified under the Scheduling Drug Act, that marijuana is deadly, extremely addictive and causes mental and psychotic episodes, violence, and quick escalation to harder drugs. It cause persons under 21 to suffer loss of their IQ almost immediately. Causing teens to be stupid and do stupid things, like teens haven’t been doing that for millions of years???

    I’m trying to express thank-you to you all for being consistent, whoever you are, as it proves we’re not simply mouthing a script.

    What’s posted here is reality. Which makes me wonder what is posted on the blogs and websites of the prohibitionist’s sites? Is it the same old, same old? Or are they capitalizing on studies like the one where some 40 students, had MRI brain scans… 20 students were non-users, 20 were. The scans came back with obvious changes to the brain, it’s actual form, for marijuana users.

    The key to this subject is that nothing really was known about the students. How were they doing? What were their grades? How was their social life? Obvious questions not asked, and hate to say it but in the 70’s, or 60’s experiments on monkey lock in a airtight room are given pure marijuana smoke to breath… the monkeys die, the conclusion, “brain damaged”.

  24. It’s NIXON’S police state. To bad Reagan didn’t listen to his mentor “Bill Buckley.”

  25. @BobKat – The vast majority of our cannabis using population is very much, and with good reason, afraid of our Govt. I know a lot of users but I am the only one that actively does anything about trying to end prohibition. All my friends are afraid of losing their jobs, their kids, having their doors busted down in the middle of the night by a militarized swat team, and etc. One friend, in particular, who happens to be a school teacher nearing retirement has been using it as long as me (roughly 40 years). He has been an outstanding teacher, is highly motivated, and is very intelligent. He has instructed me to never even use the word marijuana or cannabis in any letter or email I send him. Is he being paranoid? I think NOT in this crazy society in which our Govt seems to spy on our every move.

    A congressman recently spoke out to say that if the Republican congress could take a secret vote on whether or not to legalize marijuana, they would choose to legalize. However, with their voting choice being public would cower and vote not to legalize since they too fear (apparently) themselves and others within the Govt.

    What a crazy ass world this has become. When George Orwell wrote the novel “1984” I think the world we now live in was the kind of thing he had in mind.

    I wonder, why can’t our congressmen and senators vote, if just this one time (to legalize marijuana), in private?

  26. @Dave Evans
    Explain how Obama got more votes than there were registered voters. Explain how Obama got on the ballot using forged documents. Explain why Dibold won’t release the source code for their machines? what are they hiding?

  27. Why did it take only 12 years to stop alcohol prohibition, yet marijuana prohibition has been in effect for almost 80 years? I don’t think it’s just big pharma, big business, and the big criminal justice system. I think it also has something to do with conveniently being able to arrest and incarcerate poor minorities more easily. It’s been part of the new Jim Crow. So much for a “free country”.

  28. The problem is, the foolish people are wicked and not good enough for government. Government officials, authorities, and experts are fed up. After all the good things government does for people to save them from evil drugs and foreigners, the people still foolishly want to take marijuana. Government, in its goodness and beneficence, is merely wanting to save the kids. So government must protect itself from people – ungrateful people who don’t appreciate government – and if that means forcing the people to be good like government wants, then so be it. There’s some government handcuffs for you ungrateful pot-smokers, and after government takes your property, they’ll slave you in a forced-work prison (at a tidy profit, of course). Because that’s what the people deserve, because the people are foolish and not good enough for our righteous (Romans 13) government. The ungrateful people have only themselves to blame: they choose to use marijuana and demand it be legal, therefore the people aren’t good enough for government.

  29. @ Am I the only one in this entire country that has any common sense? Of course not; so if you are reading this then rise up against this hypocrisy and end the nightmare!

    comment: What the courts do is they keep these topics going on for decades; like “Marijuana and Gay Marriage for example.

    Gay Marriage was debated for 20 yrs. in CA !!
    What a waste money and time! Legalize today !
    Legalize weed; legalize CBD; legalize gay ! why?People have the right to their lifestyle!

  30. @ Dave “And to increase real crime by creating a massive black market. What else is going to happen when you ban one of the most useful plants on the planet? What is the difference between this and Insider Trading? Hmm? The system is rigged and unjust. They make money and take money thru lies and deceit…
    Comment: “my thoughts exactly; the price of Weed is artificially inflated due to prohibition;
    such as Oil prices are due to tariffs/taxes; Imagine our Independence if we Grow Hemp for Fuel; Hemp for heating energy; and Hemp for Housing insulation? Is the USA “hip to hemp”?

  31. I have long term chemo Radation residual effects continued back pain from falling from this and frankly my 5th amendment rights are being violated. Everyone needs to vote for Rand Pauls bill S 2644 , the fair act.
    PLEASE spread the word in Kentucky….please.

  32. I think that it should have been like this in the beginning it is a Plant not man made like everything else just wish it would have been sooner

  33. The recent study that aired on NPR Morning Edition says it all: (As stated in another post) The DOJ including the DEA, CIA and foreign “aid” backed off of Nicaragua in the 80s (after open scandal that revealed our government toppling Democracies, confiscating drugs and selling weapons) …and let the Democracy start over. So they did. Instead of spending on the violent national guard, they cut them from the budget and spent on intervention of young adults and children to feed, shelter and educate them before they fell to crime. Today, the murder rate in Nicaragua is 11 to 100,000.
    Unlike Nicaragua, the DOJ never left Honduras, El Salvador or Guatemala. Guess which nation is safest to live in and visit today?

  34. Miles, I think you just hit on a conversation I had recently with a colleague of mine. Worried about the rise in use when legalization happens, I tried to explain. Any rise in use will be all the quiet one’s afraid to voice there opinions openly now, coming out. We have become cowards to our government. I try to educate all that will listen but the fear is overwhelming. I too wish we could get these people on board. In secret yes they agree, in public they say no. It’s a wonder were not still English subjects.

  35. Just keep fighting the fight. On every level of government, when one votes, be sure to vote for those who support the change in legislation from one of prohibition to one of legal use and cultivation. There’s no reason why all states shouldn’t vote in legal use and cultivation.

    On the federal level, it needs to be removed asap from the Schedule One status. This change alone would make life much easier for those who are still being arrested and also set the stage for all states to take a stand of legality.

    Vote, and make sure you vote no one in that doesn’t support immediate changes to the present laws on the books on a state and federal level.

  36. @Miles: Very much so. My dad grew up on the other side of the Iron curtain and came here as a refugee originally, in the fifties. He has often said that the Soviets scared him but Americans TERRIFIED him, and he feels that way to this day. That he came to this country and thought he had entered an insane asylum, with so many people with so much to have and so little to fear were some of the most obsessively chicken-hearted cowards he’d ever seen, constantly making up things to be afraid of and then fearing them disproportionately to the actual danger (even if the danger was real).

    And then there was the American government, the puppetmaster of all this chaos…

    And after being here so many decades and seeing how the American government has managed to manipulate people to vote against their own best interests, and to sell the country to the highest bidder while convincing a scary lot of people that this is for the best….well, he has often said he prefers an occupying Soviet soldier on the street corner to the BS our government/law enforcement/corporations keep peddling to convince us to accept subjugation. At least you know where that Soviet stands and he’s not pretending to be your friend. He’ll gun you down if he gets the chance, and you’ll gun him down if you get the chance, and you both know it, and you aren’t trying to convince the other that it’s “for the best” if he got felled by your bullets. There’s an honesty in that dynamic that is refreshing compared to what we have right now. This shit we fight is far more insidious and harder to get a bead on, and half the time you’re fighting some average jagoff who’s drunk the corporate Drug War profiteering kool-aid–someone who often means well, but knows nothing. And it’s frustrating.

  37. Hello Joe Bannana,

    please read more at:
    http://www.politifact.com/ohio/statements/2012/nov/19/we-people-petition/online-petition-claims-obama-got-more-votes-one-co/

    The issue is Rebublicans just keep lying about Obama so much, a couple of the things they happen to lie about do sort of sound right to different people, but are factually propaganda. Setting our policies by liar’s propaganda is already happening too often in America. Almost everything they’ve criticized Obama for, is something old school Republicans supported. They are trying to lead our country with, “Obama Sucks”! But can’t think of any good ideas on their own. Also, Republicans helped write and amend so called Obama Care, their new arguments against it are down right silly. “Socialist” they say when it is nearly 100% capitalist. The things these guys say just don’t jive.

  38. Regarding my earlier post about the cities of Albuquerque and Santa Fe attempting to push through lighter penalties for MJ possession, and the GOP’s obstruction of that attempt, there is an update:

    Another Albq city councilman, Rey Garduno, is introducing another resolution to honor the intent of the original petition signers, and again asks if Albq should reduce MJ penalties. If Garduno can get enough support on the city council, that question would make it on November’s ballot.

    Therefore, I implore all of you from NM, and specifically Albq to sign the online petition to put that on the ballot.

    Alas, I am a simpleton when it comes to the whys and wherefores of the internet and have no idea how to include a link; however, you can go to the NM ProgressNow site and sign the petition. (I really have to learn how to insert links!) Thanks.

  39. @ DemonHype,

    Your dad is right: Americans are too often afraid of their own shadows. 9/11 struck a bolt of abject fear into (far too many of) us. We’re afraid of everything, from crime to foreigners to marijuana to socialism, you name it. It terrifies us.

    We only have two countries bordering us–Canada and Mexico–and we have two oceans protecting our flanks, for god’s sakes! What would we do if we had Russia or China or Pakistan or Nigeria or any number of other countries on our border? We’d have already fired off all the nukes!

    I blame much of that fear on the our media. When I was in Europe several years ago I was astonished at how different their nightly news–local news–was. They didn’t bombard you with images and news stories of crime or terrorists, etc; their news usually focused on other things like city projects, politics, etc. But virtually nothing about murder, rapes, pot smokers, you name it.

    I stopped watching the local news and national broadcast news years ago, and am far happier for it. Many in my parents’ generation, most of whom are in their eighties now, will never use the internet for their news, will continue to watch the local and national crap on TV until the day they die, and stay frightened about far too many issues.

  40. Hello Joe Banana, the strangest part of the whole “Obama wasn’t born in the US” thing is it actually do not matter where Obama was born. His mother was already a verified USA citizen; which means regardless of what country he might have been born in, he is still a Natural Born Citizen.

    So literal idiots made up made up this story about how there is a conspiracy about where Obama was born, even though it doesn’t matter. He could have been born on the Moon and he would still qualify to run for President at least on the merit of his citizenship! They are just spouting BS. It is sad really, that this party has degenerated so much to just saying silly, childish even, things over and over. At the end it really does appear to me that they just hate the fact there is a black fellow occupying the White House. “He was born in Africa” is enough to rile people up? Really? Explain why please. The Rebubs are just looking for the stupid people voting block at this point. Just look at how much shit gets talked about marijuana? “It kills brain cells” one of the most famous–but not true–instead listening to and getting brainwashed by assholes kills hope for a positive future.

  41. the states that still have cannabis illegal are trying to milk the cow before it is legal nationwide. lets get our residents with possession of a plant while we still can.

  42. If you research rape kits, you will find recent reports of many cities where tens of thousands of collected rape kits that have sat in evidence locker rooms for years, not being analyzed or investigated. So we can arrest 750,000 otherwise law-abiding citizens per year, while rape cases are ignored and allowed to repeat. Where are the priorities of those in charge? Certainly not focused on the welfare of American Citizens.

  43. @ Miles, August 2, 2014 at 7:11 am

    I gather you’re of similar age to me – 60. We’ve lived with this marijuana bullshit our whole lives, from the time we we very young hearing horror stories of the relative, neighbor or friend that got involved in drugs. Marijuana was the one most aggressivly spoken of.

    Come to find out in the 70’s it’s all a lie. A fabrication. A hugely hurtful not funny at all joke!

    Orwell didn’t see this. Snowden did. But with marijuana – it’s different. It’s a federal fantasy – a comic book to them. It’s the frosting on Tricky Dick’s cake, something that has haunted us our whole life.

    I’m white, so this isn’t a racist thing, but because I was busted for having a marijuana pipe (but no marijuana, just the resin in the pipe) and pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor in the mid-80’s, I must answer yes to “…have you ever been charged with a crime?”

    Not to mention, I have PTSD and marijuana is the only thing, a plant, not a drug, of which I’ve tried them all and the side-effects are really bad! Since THC metabolites can remain in on’e body for on average 30 days, I’m probably screwed there too, as are many of us.

    I understand the fear… but honest, we can’t live in fear. We can’t survive hiding our heads in the sand – think about it… sure you see nothing, so you don’t see the machete either. Seems safer with head in sand but I’d rather be looking around.

    I wasn’t always bold. The turning point for me was – as a person very experienced with a tool, I offered my help to the family of a missing person, got very involved for two years, and the original theory police had was she “of questionable character and probably owed drug money – she was a known marijuana user and harder drugs from NY flowed in, which caught on very quickly. Had marijuana been legal, like alcohol and tobacco, the original theory towards the person’s disappearance would have been much different. It was in the news… it brought me out of myself and I decided to to advocate – speak with, and out to people. It wasn’t right, people were and still are being hurt (two states are the exception!) by the laws that shouldn’t be, but are; a real life nightmare.

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