Moving Legalization Forward in 2015

 

The beginning of a new year provides an opportunity for reflection about what we hope to accomplish over the coming year, and whether there is a need to revise or fine-tune our tactics or strategy. It is also a time for allowing our hopes and dreams to take flight, even as we acknowledge we may not accomplish everything on our wish list within the next twelve months. By setting lofty goals, some of which may initially seem out-of-reach, we will surely move closer to our ultimate goal of full legalization all across the country.

Here are some strategies I propose we embrace for 2015.

1. Legalization is working well in Colorado and Washington, and we must continue to gather and spread the good news.

To read the balance of this column, please go to Marijuana.com

 

45 thoughts

  1. “They want assurances that juvenile marijuana smoking will not skyrocket and that there will be a way to identify marijuana-impaired drivers and keep our roadways safe.”

    “They”? Shouldn’t this be the goal of all responsible marijuana users as well? This article makes pot smokers out to be advocates fir drugged driving and underage use.

    I certainly hope I’m not alone in my view that kids should be prevented from smoking marijuana unless under medically prescribed supervision. In fact, preventing underaged use is one of our strongest arguments.

  2. Thank you for finally addressing the taxation aspect, and that excessive taxation will continue to drive the black and gray markets.

    The best way to integrate medical and “recreational” markets would be to make all retail taxes relatively low, and enact a flat excise tax similar to winegrowers at the production level. Production-level taxes therefore fund the bulk of the regulatory regime, and then retail sales taxes support the general fund.

    Once our laws accommodate an equally competitive environment, the major black market forces will naturally dissolve.

  3. Wow, Keith, #7 and #4 were AWEsome.

    I would like to add more emphasis on Colorado’s successful model of using revenue from industrial and commercial cannabis on education, but instead of capping the cost at the first $10million, integrating a variable education tax percentage that adjusts for inflation and recessions.
    The first line off the list is about educating the public and Congressman, which is truly continuing education. Cannabis affects every major issue of our lives from fuel, to feed, shelter, food and medicine. Following the President’s proposal, and laugh if you will, we need cannabis revenue to pay for institutions of “higher” learning, (or perhaps I’ll stick with Canniversities) so that students on s “high” of spending pell grants with free tuition for the first two years of a Bachelors degree dont get stuck facing a student loan they can never repay for their final two years of uppergraduate education.
    After we’re done laughing about studying cannabis, think of the innovation and production from recycling and reinvesting American passion for cannabis into education? An agricultural Revolution where we stop going into debt you cant even opt out of with bankruptcy? A non for profit institution of higher learning dedicated to science, and teaching young people about how our government works or doesn’t work just by teaching a course in the history of prohibition through the industrial era?
    How about publicly cannabis funded courses on patenting laws, sustainable energy using hemp, and maintaining food crops as open source resources for Small family farms?
    Forget the tomato model, where’s the Canniversity Model?

  4. I think that the hardest state to win over is going to be Kansas. But I think it is looking a lot better even here. Missouri is about to legalize. And the majority of people that live in kansas live right on the border of missouri. The Kansas city metropolitan area is the biggest metropolitan area in Kansas and Missouri! And the whole metropolitan area is split right down the middle. Half missouri half Kansas. And with Missouri having two big metro areas. And Kansas only having one. And the huge majority of the state of Kansas living just in that area. It is going to be close to impossible for Kansas to police the border. Especially with Kansas city no still being a lot bigger then Kansas city ks. It would probably be easier for Kansas to police the entire border of Kansas and Colorado. Then just the state line between the two cities. So I think that if mo legalizes then ks will have to be very close behind. And Kansas is one of the thickest bible belt states that youv ever been to. But it doesn’t matter because mo is such a huge influence on ks that they will have to do it weather they want to or not. We would be killing two birds with one stone. That would also devide the two states that stood up against Colorado. And the da of co was right when he said that we need to get our meth problem under control. I grew up in Kansas. And the huge meth problem in the center of the country is way more destructive then any pot plant. Legalize weed in the Midwest! The true change will start in the middle.

  5. All of these strategies look appealing. I especially like the legalized gathering places idea, similar to the coffeeshops in Amsterdam.

    For Christ’s sakes, how many bars are there in the cities and towns of America? Tens of thousands, no doubt. It’s ridiculous not to allow a legal place for pot smokers to congregate and smoke, and one of the vestiges of “reefer madness” prohibition.

    I’ve been to Amsterdam twice, and in all my visits to the coffeeshops in that city never saw anything resembling violence.

    I can’t say the same for the American bars I used to frequent.

  6. I thought it worth summarizing:

    1. Legalization is working well in Colorado and Washington, and we must continue to gather and spread the good news.

    2. Full legalization, regardless of why one smokes, must be our ultimate goal.

    3. Reasonable regulations are politically necessary

    4. The Obama Administration should be a primary focus for the two years remaining in his presidency.

    5. We need to successfully enact full legalization legislatively in at least one state.

    6. We need provisions allowing smokers to socialize, similar to the Amsterdam coffee shops.

    7. We need to keep the taxes modest.

  7. Well thanks for acknowledging the “tomato model”. It is the conservative model. Lets go back to the way it was before 1937.

    It is marketing. Market it as the Conservative Model. The way it was done before Prohibition.

    Taxes and regulations will just give us legal cartels. We can put some break on that by allowing home grown. No more than 200 plants. Just like the 200 gallon limit on beer.

    I ought to mention that if taxes are high enough we will also have illegal cartels.

    And who is going to monitor hemp? Anything but the tomato model will kill hemp.

  8. @Evening Bud:

    “I’ve been to Amsterdam twice, and in all my visits to the coffeeshops in that city never saw anything resembling violence.

    I can’t say the same for the American bars I used to frequent.”

    I had this same experience, I cannot remember ever passing a joint around in the hippie commune and having someone get violent. I can’t even remember even hearing a raised voice.

    When I dropped back in and started playing music in redneck bars, it seemed like every other weekend a fight broke out. I was also ill prepared for just how much more dangerous alcohol and its high are compared to weed.

  9. The President could use his executive powers to
    (1) reschedule marijuana to a lower schedule under federal law, reflecting both its relative safety and the myriad of valuable medical uses;
    ….
    (4) transform the Drug Czar’s office from an anti-drug propaganda headquarters to a science-based drug advisory office, providing the President and Congress with honest information about the relative dangers of all drugs, including alcohol and tobacco as well as currently illegal drugs.

    I like both of these suggestions, because they base public policy on science. To base public policy on anything else ultimately costs the country a lot of money unnecessarily.

  10. @ Galileo,

    I hear you. I can add family gatherings to that as well, because there was usually someone who brought beer to the wedding–and funeral–receptions! And with emotions running high during those latter occasions, we sometimes witnessed emotional explosions (I’m talking blows here).

    As you’ve noted, I too never saw that type of rowdy behavior from those who snuck off and smoked a J.

  11. Rep. Jason Chaffetz in the news for sounding off against legalizing in D.C., and is in charge of oversight committee. This guy is another carpetbagger dick prohibitionist who thinks he knows better than the voting public of D.C. about how they want to be governed. Why is that? Just because his constituents back in Utah are against legalization for adult recreational.

    The man definitely acts as if his will trumps the will of the people. A$$hole.

    Same goes for Feinstein and Grassley, a$$holes, invoking international law, and demanding from Obama to explain why he honors the will of the people as to how they wanted themselves governed. Obama respects the will of the cannabis community, respects the will of the voters of Colorado, Washington, and now Alaska, even D.C. Hey, I got news for you prohibitionists like Chaffetz, Feinstein, and Grassley: You’re never going to arrest your way out of the problem YOU HAVE with cannabis. Cannabis is the safer choice over alcohol, and you can’t force people to poison themselves with alcohol for recreational relaxing.

    Newsflash! The U.S. doesn’t take orders from the U.N.! The U.S. breaks international law all the time. It redefined torture as enhanced interrogation techniques; it went to war over manufactured evidence; it is electronically sweeping up wide swaths of data–freakin’ tapped foreign politicians’ phones.

    People aren’t going to just stop using cannabis because you prohibitionists say so. Ain’t gonna happen.

    Judge Mueller might as well follow the DEA’s own judge and go further and pull cannabis out of the Schedule altogether. Best to go with the marijuana legalization momentum.

    That flying de Blasio banner was one damn expensive news bite. After a day, it’s out of the news cycle. New York just needs to legalize adult recreational, and NYPD and their prohibitionist banner bums should just shut up and get their share of the revenues from taxing cannabis in The Big Apple. You know, a$$holes like Chaffetz who sit on a committee can block funding but what if NYC decided to implement adult recreational legalization? Anybody float that? You ought to be able to visit NYC and do tourist stuff and relax recreationally with cannabis rather than alcohol and have a damned good selection, Denver in NYC. No more, eh, Papi, blah, blah, blah in Spanish. Nice Dutch style kofieshop at Washington Square. Move the guys out of the elements and into a shop, warm and in summer air conditioned, taxable earnings with benefits, cuz they earnings now are cash and untaxed without health benefits.

    Waiting for something or someone to do something (Cuomo or NY legislature) to make legalization happen in NYC.

  12. The problem with all this is these bozos think prohibition will get them re-elected and so far it has. This has to be a grassroots movement from all people. Consumers and non consumers as well, this is about taking the power out of the elites hands and give it back to people. We need millions marching in the streets for freedom and sensibility and boot these elitist to the curb. This is the one issue that will unite people of all types whites African Americans, Latinos conservatives, liberals all types. We just need an organizer to put it all together. And that is where I have problem with all the insiders at NORML .they only focus on the easy localities it should be nation wide. The insiders should be planning for 2016 April 20 100 millionerson march for freedom and cannabis.

    [Editor’s note: NORML is not at all about fomenting class warfare. Ending cannabis is hardly about elite vs. proletarian. NORML is a grassroots group made up of a wide range of Americans. NORML’s been putting the ‘grass’ in grassroots public advocacy for cannabis legalization since 1970…it is a national organization with the only grassroots network of over 150 NORML chapters found in some decidedly not easy localities like OK, TX, GA, KS, SC, IN, IA, etc…]

  13. @MSimon,

    Hemp IS conservative. In comparison to corn or cotton, hemp conserves water. And it’s liberal. It expands the perception of our minds while creating a priority of tolerance, education and treatment before judgement, enforcement or violence.
    And as Keith well points out, Tomatoes don’t get us high.
    I would add, as much as I love homemade tomato sauce, tomatoes don’t have the utility that cannabis does for industrial, medicinal and culinary products. So let’s stop comparing cannabis to tomatoes, just because we don’t tax tomatoes.
    No taxation without representation goes both ways; There would be no pro-marijuana representation without commercial marijuana taxation. Or how do you think that Colorado and Washington legalized?

  14. To clarify, most hemp, especially that which has been legalized by the hemp research amendment, is less than %1 THC, but I maintain that the utility of hemp still expands the perception of our minds without the psychoactivity of THC, simply when we contemplate the renewable sustainability and water and soil conservancy of hemp-based cellulose plastics, building materials, paper, diesel, food and medicine …all without the use of petroleum based fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides. Sorry, tomatoes; You’re just not in the same category.

  15. @Oracle,

    The buzz going around in anticipation of Judge Mueller’s verdict is that she could force the DEA to reschedule on a settlement. Prohibitionists don’t want this case escalating to SCOTUS. There’s more than the scheduling of marijuana at stake; This case is Pandora’s box threatening judicial review of the entire evidence that authorized the Controlled Substances Act of 1970. When I sit and read all of the evidence that Judge Mueller allowed in this case in defiance of the scheduling of marijuana, it seems to me like the smartest thing the DEA could do for themselves is reschedule marijuana before President Obama is forced to do so himself, and the role of the ONDCP comes into question.
    The heart of prohibition, in my opinion, surrounds the patenting of cannabinoids on one hand (#6630507) while simultaneously prohibiting the research of the endocannabinoid system on the other. (ONDCP– “Unmuzzle the Drug Czar.”)

  16. I just want to say, cannabis should be legal everywhere. I hope this ends as the first state to legalize with legislation instead of voter initiated!

  17. Hey “TheOracle,” check out Reid v Covert on the supemacy clause and Treaties. SCOTUS has not yet overtuned this SCOTUS precedent.

  18. The Marijuana Business Daily and Los Angeles Times gives a much more conservative prediction of the U.S. Government v. Picard et al. They say that this case will “not likely” change Federal marijuana law, but provide “guidance” for future cases.
    But as the Associated Press points out, this case is expected to go to the defense (thanks to evidence presented by our very own Paul Armentano) and then a fully expected appeal would send the case to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. A win there for the defense would “affect every Western State” in the U.S.
    Once again, I not only expect this case to win, I expect it to win in appeals and be heard by SCOTUS… That is IF prohibitionists dont settle for a deal, in a similar way that certain Republicans are pressuring Oklahoma’s AG to drop the suit on Colorado, because of the greater risk at stake for other state’s rights cases… Oh, and the fact that it defies the very meaning of Republican to attack state’s rights, and both cases make Republicans look VERY stupid leading up to 2016 elections where marijuana is “high” on the agenda. I predict some top ranking Republicans push the DEA to settle for a deal before Obama puts marijuana in his State of the Union speech. Because we all know that Obama ‘s top priority on drug policy is the disproportionate incarceration of African Americans. It was the main reason Mandela wouldnt talk to Obama before he past away, and Obama has a legacy for himself and the Democratic Party at stake.
    If the DEA doesnt reschedule and Obama has to do it, the President is going to not only reschedule; He’ll have to make changes to the ONDCP and to the C.S.Act in order to nip discrimination at the root. We just need to keep showing polls for Democratic support, which is easy, since even a majority of Republican voters want legalization these days.

  19. “drugs. I like both of these suggestions, because they base public policy on science. To base public policy on anything else ultimately costs the country a lot of money unnecessarily.”

    About three year ago, I started mentally comparing the Drug War and it Pushers to to a made up cult where they push boulders up a mountain for god, to make the world a better place. But what is the point? They are just going to fall back down and maybe kill someone on the way. It is just too fucking stupid to put into words.

  20. looked at the case: civilians tried under UCMJ on U.S. military installation abroad, no Congressional Act yet legalizing cannabis and trumping international treaties prohibiting cannabis.

    I’m looking for a ripple effect of positive pot reporting by the network television stations. 60 Minutes did a news story. That’s CBS. What about ABC and NBC and their investigative report shows? I want to see them on board with legalization, downplaying the prohibitionist points of argument.

    Just heard from a negative Ned today, who said Colorado’s weed today is turning people into zombies. I’ve heard various drug czars paint people as zombies, such as a zombies in Vondel Park, Amsterdam, Netherlands. It’s the today’s pot isn’t your grandfather’s pot. No kidding, the consumer in states like Colorado has a lot more information about the quality of the sacred herb, e.g. testing for pesticides, herbicides, mold, pests, potency for THC and CBD, whether it’s adulterated, be that laced with heroin and shit or whether it’s adulterated with lead to make it weigh more, which we had here in Europe a while back, you know, and whatever else I missed that they test for.

    Hey, Pappy’s weed could have had freakin’ Paraquat on in the States. I remember all to well pimps lacing weed with heroin to get their hoes. There were the Reagan years, and Nancy Reagan’s thing.

    Zombies?! Zombies?! The people at the cannabis soirees in the shows on MSNBC, or was it CNBC, and that outdoor concert certainly didn’t look like zombies. What, are they going to start eating the living like in those zombie movies or something out of Walking Dead? Hah! They certainly didn’t look incoherent. Replace the images people have in mind when referring to people high on cannabis. Show lots of people who are NOT zombies. Let’s move this along. Otherwise, we’ll move on to the next generation’s slogan: This is not your great grandfather’s pot.

    Prohibitionists will try to stretch prohibition out for yet another generation. Let’s make This is not your great grandfather’s pot into a joke, and not allow it to become reality.

  21. @Odnn

    I recall reading about this on this NORML website months ago — The url shows a date of Monday, November 10, 2014 for the appearance of the write-up.

    My IQ is exactly the same as it measured in kindergarden. I was 19 or 20 when I started, though. I never smoked 3 times a day, either.

    I think the results showing the level of effects determined by age on onset (when the person started smoking) make a case for regulation of marijuana similar to alcohol and nicotine. It’s foolish to continue ceding control and distribution to a criminal underground.

  22. Julian says:
    January 14, 2015 at 12:23 am

    Hemp would blow a very big hole in pot taxes and regulation. Hemp will not be profitable if it has to be guarded like medical/recreational.

    And if you don’t guard hemp what is to prevent outdoor grows of medical/recreational?

    Hemp blows up the whole tax and regulate idea.

    No more taxed or regulated than tomatoes. For the hemp.

  23. Odnn says:
    January 14, 2015 at 1:02 pm

    Two or three problems.

    1. It is a small study.
    2. It was not a study of actual changes in users. Just a snapshot comparison with supposedly matched non-users.
    3. Endocannabinoid production peaks in the 15 to 25 age range. Cannabis use peaks in that same age range. No one knows why.

  24. TheOracle says:
    January 13, 2015 at 7:41 pm

    Some one asked me about DC legalization:

    Any chance Dipsh*t Andy from Maryland can try and stop this?

    My response:

    He has to get 216 Congress critters on board with him. The libertarian faction of the Republicans are 49 votes. The Democrats won’t vote for it. And a lot of Republicans would rather it didn’t become an election issue in 2016.

    My guess is that the R leadership will not let it come up for a vote for fear of a loss which would weaken the Rs. They know they are losing on the issue and would rather not make that obvious.

    Well that is my guess as a Republican oriented voter.

    The conversation was here:

    http://www.theweedblog.com/dc-moves-forward-with-marijuana-legalization/

  25. @MSimon

    A hemp field would fill the air with hemp pollen leading to a ruined crop of seedy marijuana in any nearby grow operation. I haven’t seen any marijuana that wasn’t seedless sensimilla in over a decade and don’t want to. Outdoor cultivation of hemp would drive marijuana grows indoors.

    You can’t get high on hemp, and you can’t hide a decent grow of good reefer in the middle of a hemp field for fear of pollen ruining it, so why do we need to guard hemp?

  26. @oracle;
    If you want to turn the conversation of “zombies” where it belongs, check out the news today on Dr. Dave “the Candyman” busted in a Wisconsin VA medical facility for overdosing patients and soldiers with narcotics, even overdosing one former marine, IN PATIENT care with an 11- drug coctail, despite staff complaints to Congress and the Inspector General.
    U.S. Military drug policy us killing our soldiers.
    It is no small coincidence that the testimony of Sgt. Begin in the U.S. v. Picard is under Federal review by Judge Mueller. As the deceased Marine’s father said, “Why would anyone offer more narcotics to an addict?” Sgt. Begin said the same thing on the stand.

    @MSimon:
    Hemp grows very well outdoors. Medical marijuana is grown indoor or outdoor. Proper zoning and incentives for farmers to grow hemp designated for marshland or swamps in flood zones can easily protect crops from cross pollenation, contamination or run off.

  27. Dude on Harry Smith’s CNBC in Colorado with the MMJ card brought that up, a combat veteran. The VA must be badly underfunded. Man they got some long waiting list problems. Looks like they don’t have Rx prescription) oversight internally, like within the hospital itself or something. They probably need a hell of a lot more doctors to see patients timely and so that doctors aren’t so severely overworked. Or, this doctor was raking in the perks the pharmaceutical companies dole out as incentives for every X pills they write prescriptions for.

    Man, all this inside the D.C. beltway shit between Congress and D.C. legalization is messed up. Congress just needs to get the hell out of the way and let it happen.

    Prohibitionists are the ones who have the problem with cannabis. They’re wrong, and refuse to admit it. People who use cannabis simply just aren’t going away. They’re not going to change their lifestyle and live their lives they way you dictate by law. It isn’t working with the gay community; you can’t keep denying people what is right. The cannabis community needs its Stoned Wall Moment, because it’s suffered lots of raids by the feds.

    With replacing the images of zombies when a prohibitionist utters that word, I mean the use of such investigative news shows like the segment 60 Minutes did, and the potumentaries that CNBC (Trish Regan, Harry Smith), MSNBC’s various series (thank you very much) and of course CNN’s series. Even newspapers and periodicals could print pictures of cannabis consumers who are NOT in a stupor, Not incoherent, Not sitting there talking to someone who isn’t there or to themselves or uttering gibberish.

  28. I’m talking about showing a lot of images and video of active intelligent articulate people. One doesn’t have to get blasted with cannabis, just like drinkers don’t have to get plastered, it’s just that some do and they get violent and get behind the wheel.

    In subsequent potumentaries show a lot of people doing things and in ways so that the public will recall these positive pot images of positive people partaking of the sacred herb for people to recall in their mind’s eye. Give them a semiotic visual recall stimulus so that when the prohibitionists blow that dog whistle positive images are associated at the expensive of the living dead reference.

    If you think of anything else or anything better, throw it in there.

    Thank you for putting forth regulating in D.C.

  29. Drug Policy written by insurance companies and engineered by pharmaceutical companies are killing civilians and soldiers alike for profit. Legalize the herb. Let’s grow our dignity back, and perhaps some respect for our medical institutions.

  30. I hate to break it to those that want there to be a way to identify marijuana-impaired drivers, but people drive under the influence of marijuana EVERYDAY. When you’re on the way to work, to the grocery store, or just driving around period—you are in the company of those that are under the influence of marijuana. More so, those that are apart of the cannabis community, should advocate that being under the influence of marijuana has little to no effect on one’s ability to drive.

    [Editor’s note: People drive impaired on alcohol (and pills) everyday, doesn’t make it safe or lawful. Same too with cannabis. Cannabis consumers, like alcohol consumers, need to be mindful not to drive while impaired, or be prepared to face reasonable civil and/or criminal penalties.]

  31. Editor, yes that is very true. However, the public needs much better education on what it mean to be impaired–I have only come across a very small number of marijuana users that had trouble driving after taking marijuana. And then they Self Identified that they don’t feel safe driving. This is exactly what drunks cannot do.

    This is drastically different, if someone smokes marijuana, they can tell if they can drive or not. Alcohol–that is not possible because of the effects it have on our nerves. Hence, the blanket ban. It makes no sense to expect marijuana users to be regulated for problems that marijuana doesn’t cause!!!

    [Editor’s note: Indeed, public needs to know more about the actual effects of cannabis on driving (not subjective personal observations from biased consumers). What organization has been disseminating that kind information for over five decades? That’s why when NORML’s staff acknowledges the science and pharmacology of how cannabis can effect driving skills, it does so based on existing scientific studies.

    There is an existing, and growing body of work on the matter with cannabis’ pending legalization, and cannabis consumers, including experienced ones, should not drive for 75 minutes or so after consuming cannabis.

    An extensive series of reports and papers on cannabis and DUID are found on NORML’s webpage here.

    Penalties for drivers charged with DUID in a number of states can face serious penalties and fines.

    At the dawn of cannabis legalization, individuals who strongly believe that cannabis causes no level of impairment such as to cause no degree of public safety concerns on the roads or in the workplace will continuously be at odds with the numerous non-profit organizations that have labored in many different fields for many years seeking substantive cannabis law reforms, who’re not going to be burdened by claims made by individual consumers that they believe they possess a ‘right’ to or perceive that they can operate motor vehicles or come to the workplace impaired on cannabis.

    Alcohol impairs (severely). Cannabis impairs (modestly). There should be legally fair and scientifically accurate testing based on a product’s ability to impair.]

  32. That’s like applying coal plants with regulations for nuclear power plants. Laws and regulations about cannabis do need to reflect reality, not people’s hangup’s with comparing marijuana with alcohol.

    I believe we still have a large section of the general population that might support marijuana legalization, but have this idea that when you take it, you start tripping, seeing things that aren’t there, not seeing things that are there, ect. Of course, driving in that condition would dangerous!

    They learned about weed from Hollywood comedies, like Grandma’s Boy. “I call it the Brown Bomber.” “Why’s that?” “Every time I smoke it, I shit my pants. Want some?”

  33. “(not subjective personal observations from biased consumers).”

    Yes, indeed! I know you’re heading the other way with it, but I’m convinced that most of the people that say they don’t feel like they could drive well after imbibing marijuana, actually could drive, they just “feel like they cannot” because one of the effects of marijuana is to make a person *more* introspective, opposite alcohol which promotes less introspection.

    I am plenty well aware marijuana can and does slow reaction times. But nothing like alcohol does. The negative effects of marijuana are about 5% of what alcohol does and objectively marijuana is not able to contribute to auto accidents at the rate alcohol does, and very likely not even the same kinds of accidents, if it even contributes.

  34. @Paul,
    Just read your presentation on “Imposing Per Se Limits for Cannabis; Practical Limitations and Concerns.” Very well researched work.
    The variability of dosage, individual physiology and addition of other substances makes driving, whether “impaired,” or in some cases where senses increase sensitivity, makes this a complicated subject of science, and it makes me glad to know that an expert from NORML is writing guidelines that states can follow.
    One major concern: on your chapter over “Residual Effects of THC May be Present in the Blood of Chronic Consumers for Several Days,” I don’t see any specific guidelines that would allow law enforcement to determine WHEN someone smoked, vaporized or consumed marijuana. I liked the idea of “75”minutes before driving to provide a fair gauge for amateur marijuana consumers, (While I agree with Dave in the sense that I know I am safe to drive because I know my limits, I know not to mix my herb with alcohol before driving, and I prefer a strain of Trainwreck, for lack of a better name, which increases my awareness, I also understand not all of us are sharing the same bowl, so to speak).
    The real question is that if a person passes a DRE test, has no posession of marijuana, but subsequently fails a blood or urine test, how is a blood or urine test ever going to determine how much time has passed since someone consumed THC?

  35. Mississippi has proposed a ballot initiative that does all you say you want done, but you made no mention of it. Initiative 48 fully legalizes cannabis so that it is regulated and taxed like liquor.
    So disappointing that you are not keeping up with a state that is doing exactly what you write needs to happen.
    Sincerely,
    Kelly Jacobs
    Sponsor and Author of #bi48
    Our FB page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/YesOnProposition48/

    [Editor’s note: Why so negative? No one at any cannabis law reform organization including NORML had heard of your efforts in MS…can’t report on what is not known.

    Maybe you can communicate directly with drug policy reform groups when you file the initiative rather than in the comments section of a blog?]

  36. I am a 46 year old man,i have diabetes,ibs and diverticulitis,i have worked the last 5 years with these problems and the only relief I get is Marijuana,i pay my taxes,i have never been convicted of a felony,I have lived my life thinking that I lived in a free country,who in the hell has the right to tell me and everyone else with similar problems or worse that they cannot use cannabis as a medicine?

  37. Every time I read a post watch a video Hemp or MJ I cannot believe this plant illegal !
    This plant has so many uses both medicinally; recreationally; has manufacturing capabilities
    I watched the video Hemp for Victory 1941 USDA
    One poster wrote: “The insiders should be planning for 2016 April 20 100 million person march for freedom and cannabis.”
    I say: “Million Marijuana March DC 2016 Summer
    and to all I reiterate others Kudos to Kush!@@

  38. Interesting about Hemp conserving Water I liked this video too
    Hemp for Victory USDA 1942 (posted MSimon)
    (available on web) Thank-you…Greenie Girl:)

  39. What about testing? what the hell good does it do to legally consume cannabis in a responsible manner when our employer can still test and fire our asses for it. and we know damm good and well that company insurance companies will never let it go away. it is a safety issue now!….any news on saliva testing?

    [Editor’s note: Yours are important and long shared concerns at NORML too. Rather than drug testing (looking through biometrics to determine past use), NORML favors actual impairment testing (where failed tests could be followed up with drug testing, etc…). Currently, the legal precedents (and current statutory and regulatory laws ensconced in federal anti-drug laws) do not hold strong prospect for employees who use cannabis in off work hours, be it for therapeutic or recreational. The state supreme courts of WA, OR, CA, and MI have all ruled against state registered, card-carrying medical cannabis patients being exempted from drug testing rules in the workplaces that still choose to drug test.

    Much legally is dependent on a soon-to-be-issued supreme court ruling in CO regarding a paraplegic employee of the Dish Corporation who is a certified medical cannabis patient with an outstanding work record who was fired after self-evidently testing positive for using the medicine recommended by his physician and approved by the state’s medical cannabis agency.

    Looking forwardly, even past prohibition itself, cannabis consumers (and patients) will have to be ever vigilant against not being discriminated in the workplace just because they either choose to use or medicate with cannabis after work–that cannabis consumers be treated like alcohol consumers where ‘for cause’ standards are in effect. If the court rules in favor of Dish, even with a successful appeal to higher courts in the federal system after years of legal wrangling, this will not bode well for cannabis consumers and patients.

    Current legal and social trends are building momentum in troubling ways for drug testing against otherwise legal drugs like tobacco. Numerous companies and municipalities drug test for tobacco use with both pre-employment and random testing. If such trends continue, unchecked by consumers/patients (i.e., the victims of the workplace bigotry and their non governmental organization public advocates like NORML, ACLU, DPA, etc…), detection of cannabis via testing could still happen despite cannabis prohibition ending.

    This is exactly the type of post-prohibition public advocacy and legal challenges groups like NORML and it’s chapters–notably in CO, WA, OR and AK–are already having to confront, along with freeing cannabis prisoners, stopping overflights looking for ganja plants, reasonable taxes and regulation, ‘coffeeshops’ for adults to enjoy cannabis in, fixing travel and immigration problems associated with past cannabis offenses, professional licensing/security clearance, child custody, etc…]

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