Marijuana Legalization Bills Introduced in Canada

legalizationToday, the federal Liberal government of Canada released a slate of proposed bills that would legalize and regulate the commercial sale and adult use of marijuana in the country. The legislation would establish 18 as the minimum legal age to purchase marijuana and would create a legal framework for production, sale, and distribution. The bills were introduced in the House of Commons by Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould, Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale, Health Minister Jane Philpott and Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freehand.

You can read more details on the proposed legislation HERE.

This sensible approach to marijuana stands in stark contrast to the direction and tone United States President Donald Trump and his administration have been taking on the issue. While the Canadian government is moving in the direction of legalization and regulation, the Trump Administration and Attorney General Jeff Sessions seem more intent on reviving outdated and erroneous Drug War rhetoric than allowing science and facts to dictate public policy. The United States should follow Canada’s example and end our own costly and disastrous prohibition on marijuana.

CLICK HERE TO EMAIL YOUR REPRESENTATIVE TODAY AND URGE THEM TO END FEDERAL MARIJUANA PROHIBITION

DARE to Legalize!

Many of us have childhood memories involving a police officer trying to terrify us with outright lies and exaggerations about marijuana. Now you can show them their attempts to indoctrinate you with disinformation have failed with this new NORML t-shirt. Dare to resist Drug War lies and propaganda. Dare to legalize.

Ending marijuana prohibition is NORML. Help support the cause by ordering this limited edition t-shirt. Once this fundraiser has ended the shirts are gone! Reserve yours today by clicking here.

DARE to Legalize!

Government Accountability Office Says The Drug War Isn’t Working; Did Anybody Think It Was?

The federal government’s anti-drug efforts are inefficient and ineffective, according to a just released report issued by the Congressional watchdog agency, the US Government Accountability Office (GAO).

As if we didn’t know.

The GAO report assessed whether the Obama administration’s anti-drug strategies, as articulated by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (the ONDCP aka the Drug Czar’s office) in its 2010 National Drug Control Strategy report, have yet to achieve its stated goals.

The answer? They haven’t.

States the GAO:

“The public health, social, and economic consequences of illicit drug use, coupled with the constrained fiscal environment of recent years, highlight the need to ensure that federal programs efficiently and effectively use their resources to address this problem. ONDCP has developed a 5-year Strategy to reduce illicit drug use and its consequences, but our analysis shows lack of progress toward achieving four of the Strategy’s five goals for which primary data are available.”

In particular, the GAO criticized the administration for failing to adequately address rising levels of youth marijuana consumption. The GAO also rebuffed the ONDCP’s allegation that increased rates adolescent marijuana use are a result of the passage of statewide laws decriminalizing the plant or allowing for its therapeutic use.

“Other factors, including state laws and changing attitudes and social norms regarding drugs, may also affect drug use. We examined studies on three of these other factors, which we refer to as societal factors, which may affect youth marijuana use. … The studies that assessed the effect of medical marijuana laws that met our review criteria found mixed results on effects of the laws on youth marijuana use. … [S]tudies that assessed the effect of marijuana decriminalization that met our review criteria found little to no effect of the laws on youth marijuana use.”

You can read the full GAO report here.

White House Drug Control Budget: Failed Drug War Tactics Prioritized Over Prevention and Treatment

The Obama Administration has released its National Drug Control Budget for the FY 2014 and despite their claims that “the war on drugs is over” and that they have “bigger fish to fry” the Office National Drug Control Policy is still prioritizing failed drug war tactics over prevention and treatment.

whbud2The new budget calls for 9.6 billion dollars to be spent on domestic law enforcement, 3.7 billion for interdiction, and 1.4 billion for international drug control efforts.

Prevention, in the form of education and outreach efforts, receives a paltry $1.4 billion dollars. While this is a 5% increase over the previous year’s budget, it is still a minuscule sum when you consider we are spending nine times more on arresting people than we are to educate them on risks of drug use and stop them from ending up in the criminal justice system in the first place. The budget calls for an additional 9.3 billion to be spent on treatment programs for those considered to have drug abuse issues (though $80 million of this funding goes to the drug court program, infamous for giving defendants the “choice” of serving time in rehab or spending time in a jail cell).

For all their rhetoric, this recent budget shows that little has changed in the federal government’s priorities when it comes to the War on Drugs. Funding is still disproportionately spent arresting people or diverting them into treatment programs after the fact, while only a small fraction (13%) of the overall drug budget is spent trying to fix the problem before it starts.

It is time for the Obama Administration’s policy to match its language on the issue of drug law reform. President Obama once promised that he would allow science and factual evidence to guide his administration on issues of public policy, but when it comes to marijuana laws, we are still waiting for him to deliver.

You can view the full text of the budget here.

Most Americans Want Legal Marijuana

For the first time since they began polling the question four decades ago, Pew Research Polling has released new survey data that reveals 52% of Americans want marijuana to be legalized. Only 45% were opposed.

This support is spread across demographics. The Baby Boomers (50%), Generation X (54%), and Millenials (65%) all have majority support for legalization. The only age demographic that remains opposed is the Silent Generation, those born before 1942, though support in this age group has also significantly increased. 32% of this age group now support legalization, up from 17% in 2002.

According to this polling data, most Americans have also tried marijuana personally. 48% of respondents answered affirmatively when asked if they consume marijuana, up from 38% about a decade ago.

Not only are Americans becoming more supportive of legalization, but there has been a dramatic change in how Americans view marijuana use. In 2006, Pew Research found that 50% of Americans believed smoking marijuana was “morally wrong” and only 35% did not think it was a moral issue. Today these numbers have completely flipped, 50% of Americans responded in this latest survey that using marijuana is not a moral issue and only 32% stated it was morally wrong.

60% of Americans across all political orientations also believe the federal government should not enforce federal marijuana laws in states that legalize it. 57% of Republicans, 59% of Democrats, and 64% of Independents believe the federal government should leave states like Washington and Colorado alone.

You can view the full results of this survey here.

Letters from Eddy Lepp, Drug War POW Since 2004

Eddy Lepp is a Vietnam War Veteran, Rastafarian Minister, and Medical Marijuana farmer who was
growing marijuana for patients and members of his church when he was raided and arrested in 2004. He
is serving a 10-year prison sentence.

Dear Ed — Green Aid!

Hi all, hope this finds you all well. I’m fine, really looking forward to the 16th and praying they
reschedule. M.J. might get me a new trial or home sooner, can only hope. That said I finished the
books you sent and was hopting you would order me some more. The ones you got were in the “The
Legend of Drizzt” series, “The Hunter’s Blades Trilogy” (last ones in series you sent). There is another part of the series, it may be called “The Sellswords” but I don’t know. You could check by going to www.wizards.com written by “R.A. Salvatore.” Thank you so very much for the books and love. Sure praying it works out I can see you all soon. Please stay HAPPY, HEALTHY, and HIGH!!!

Love, respect,

Eddy

Dear Ed,

Just a note to let you know how very thankful I am for all you do for me. It means so very much. Might
get some action like Brian Epis did if I can find an attorney to help. Trying to get a hold of Tony Serra but no luck yet. But won’t give up. Once again thank you so very much!

Love, respect,

Eddy

Charles Lepp c/o 90157011
FCI La Tuna
P.O. Box 3000
Anthony, TX/NM
88021

Marijuana Legalization Measure Introduced in Oregon

Legislation has been introduced in Oregon by the House Committee on Revenue that would legalize and regulate the adult use of marijuana.

House Bill 3371 would establish a regulatory system, similar to the one in place in the state for alcohol, for the cultivation, production, and sale of cannabis to adults over 21. Adults would be allowed to possess up to 24 ounces of usable marijuana and grow up to six plants in their homes, in addition to purchasing it from regulated retail outlets. You can read the full text of the legislation here.

If you needed any further proof that elections have consequences, we now have a total of seven legalization bills pending in state legislatures, whereas we rarely had even one in previous years. The voters in Colorado and Washington set the ball of legalization rolling down hill and it seems unlikely to slow down anytime soon.

If you live in Oregon, please click here to quickly and easily contact your elected officials in support of this legislation. If you don’t live in Oregon, click here and see if there is any pending marijuana law reform legislation in your state.

OREGON: CLICK HERE TO CONTACT YOUR REPRESENTATIVE IN SUPPORT OF HOUSE BILL 3371

In November 2012, two states legalized marijuana. Help us win the rest. Consider making a donation to support NORML’s advocacy work today.

Please do not support the proposed THC/DUI Bill

Open Letter to Legislators on the THC/DUI bill:

I am a social scientist and PhD candidate at the University of Colorado at Boulder, where I have been engaged in research on cannabis for several years. In 2012, Colorado passed Amendment 64 to “regulate marijuana like alcohol.” Since marijuana regulation is new, it makes sense to base regulations for cannabis on those for alcohol, but it is important to remember that this does not make marijuana actually “like” alcohol” in its scientific properties. Cannabis does not work like alcohol, and for this reason, the THC/DUI bill is misguided in trying to set laws as if they are the same.

To justify passing the THC/DUI bill, three solid pieces of evidence are required. First, we should know levels that indicate intoxication. Second, there should be an accepted and reliable way to accurately measure that level of intoxication. Third: there should be proof of sufficient need to encroach on individual rights based on danger to the public. Please allow me to address these in turn.

1. Knowing levels that indicate intoxication. Marijuana is not “like alcohol” in terms determining impairment. The science is simply not there. A nanogram limit cannot yet be clearly and unambiguously linked to impairment. Based on the best evidence currently available (Grotenhermen and colleagues review of the literature in 2005, the Medical Marijuana Industry Group report in 2011, which responded to the first proposal of this law, and William Logan’s 2012 chapter reviewing the literature on marijuana and driving in Mahmoud ElSohly’s book Marijuana and the Cannabinoids), it is clear that we simply don’t know the correct limit over which drivers are impaired. It turns out that inexperienced or occasional cannabis consumers may be subjectively impaired at a much lower nanogram level than medical or social cannabis consumers with years or decades of experience. Logan (2012) summarizes the evidence we have to-date and is clear on the point: it is not possible to use blood tests of THC to distinguish between recent impairment and “more distant higher-intensity marijuana use” (286). For medical consumers or other chronic consumers of marijuana, heightened THC in the blood may last long after the subjective experience of impairment. In fact, maintaining higher levels of cannabinoids in one’s system may be related to medical benefit for those treating severe pain and serious illness.

2. There should be an accepted and reliable form of measurement that indicates intoxication. On the second point, it is crucial to acknowledge that marijuana and alcohol are not the same when it comes to how the body processes them. These two substances are metabolized in completely different ways by the body. Alcohol is water soluble. It is rapidly and evenly distributed throughout the body, and for this reason, breath tests can be used to approximate blood alcohol level, and both tests can be reliably used to indicate impairment. There is no such proxy for cannabis. it’s distribution in the body is based on the unique pharmacokinetics of THC, its distribution in the body and the way it is metabolized. Marijuana is lipophilic, it dissolved in fat, not water, and is metabolized quite differently than alcohol. We do not have reliable estimates that are consistent across different individuals, allowing us to measure levels of impairment with the same assessments we use for alcohol. In fact, breath tests cannot be used to measure cannabis for this reason. Instead, blood samples, the most intrusive type of test, would be necessary. Because blood tests are highly intrusive, clear and unambiguous evidence for such an intrusion on individual rights is warranted.

3. Finally, we should be able to link the use of the substance to a clear public health danger on the roads. Cannabis has not proven to present a similar level of risk in traffic accidents. On this final point, we have to ask, is a separate law warranted when marijuana intoxication is already included under existing DUI-D laws? The answer: no. There simply is not data that suggests cannabis alone greatly increases accidents or risks on the road at a level that warrants a new, separate DUI law specific to cannabis. In the case of alcohol, there are clear and well established relationships showing increased risk of accidents linked with blood alcohol levels. Less data exists for cell phone use and prescription drug use, but those studies have consistently shown significant risk ratios that indicate significant crash risks. The data on marijuana shows lower risks than these other factors. The exception is when marijuana use and alcohol use are combined. Again, Logan’s review of the data on relative crash risk following marijuana use, “studies that made odds ratio assessments based on the presence of the inactive THC-COOH metabolite uniformly failed to show significant differences at the p=0.05 level in rate of accident involvement for the drug-positive drivers” (287). Recent evidence suggests that accident rates decrease in states with regulated medical marijuana. This has been attributed to the reduction of alcohol use in favor of marijuana, resulting in fewer alcohol-impaired drivers on the road, discussed by Time magazine in an article by Maia Szalaviz from December 2011.

For these reasons, those who have studied the issue and reviewed all available evidence do not recommend the use of per se limits without better science. To the degree that such policies are used, they urge great caution, and suggest that other methods for assessing impairment not be discarded or demoted given the lack of credibility on the currently available objective measures.

The current bill under consideration belongs to a dying breed. “Get Tough” policies have been popular among politicians because they have equated with success in the polls, but as more and more people acknowledge that the War on Drugs approach to drug control is a failure, these nonscientific approaches are bound to lose traction with the voting public.

Clearly no one wants impaired drivers on the road, and no one is arguing for that. This THC/DUI bill will do little to help prevent that, and it may end up punishing people who are not impaired. Until objective limits for cannabis intoxication can be clearly determined, measured, and linked to a genuine risk to public health on the roads, we should stick with our existing DUI-D law that already covers drug impairment.

Sincerely,

Shelli Newhart Walker

PA State Senator Daylin Leach Formally Introduces Marijuana Legalization Bill Today in Harrisburg

Today, Pennsylvania State Senator Daylin Leach will formally introduce a bill to tax and regulate marijuana in Pennsylvania.

“This past November, the people of Washington State and Colorado voted to fully legalize marijuana,” said Leach. “It is time for Pennsylvania to be a leader in jettisoning this modern-day prohibition, and ending a policy that has been destructive, costly and anti-scientific.”

NORML applauds Senator Leach for taking this important step forward to end the failed policy of marijuana prohibition in his state. Pennsylvania has long been considered a bellwether state that sets the precedent for politics across the country, as such it is both exciting and encouraging to see the Keystone State take up this crucial dialogue,” said Erik Altieri, Communications Director for NORML, “Marijuana prohibition costs the state of Pennsylvania over 300 million dollars a year in enforcement costs and tens of millions a year in lost potential tax revenue, while doing little to keep the substance out of the hands of children or lower use rates. It is time for a new policy that works for the state and its people. We encourage all of Senator Leach’s colleagues in Harrisburg to join him in this call for rational marijuana laws.”

Speaking at Monday’s press conference will be Neill Franklin, Executive Director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, and Dr. David Nathan, a clinical associate professor from Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.

The press conference will be aired live online here at 2pm EST on February 11th.

If you live in Pennsylvania, you can easily contact your state representatives and tell them to support this legislation by visiting NORML’s Take Action Center here.

Senator Daylin Leach will be the keynote speaker at the NORML Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference, you can purchase your tickets to that event by clicking here.

NORML will keep you updated as this important reform effort moves forward in Pennsylvania. For further information, please visit PhillyNORML or Pittsburgh NORML’s websites here and here.

Two Southern States Show Majority Support for Medical Marijuana

In another sign of the changing times, this past week two new polls have been released demonstrating majority support for allowing the medical use of marijuana in two southern states, a region historically less supportive of cannabis law reforms.

A poll conducted by Public Policy Polling revealed that most North Carolinians believe that a doctor should possess the legal option to authorize marijuana for patients. Support for legalizing medical marijuana is at 58% overall, with 33% opposed and 9% undecided. A majority of every age group under age 65 supports allowing for the medical use of marijuana. The poll surveyed 608 North Carolina voters between January 10 and January 13, 2013.

Another Public Policy Polling survey had the majority of West Virginians supporting the medical use of cannabis, 53% in favor to 40% opposed. Further, when asked which is a safer treatment for debilitating pain: the medical use of marijuana or Oxycontin, 63% responded medical marijuana. You can view more data from this poll here.

Legislation to allow for the medical use of cannabis is expected to be introduced in both states this year. If you live in North Carolina, you can currently use NORML’s Take Action Center to write your elected officials and tell them to support this legislation by clicking here.

These recent polls are indicative of the attitude shift towards cannabis that is occurring across the country. Check NORML’s Take Action Center to see if marijuana related legislation has been filed in your state and use our form to easily contact your elected officials in support of these important measures. Check back often, as new legislation is being introduced constantly.

Pennsylvania State Senator Prefiles Marijuana Legalization Bill, Pennsylvanians Approve

Last week, state Senator from Montgomery County Daylin Leach announced his intentions to file legislation that would legalize the adult use of marijuana, in a way similar to the laws recently approved in Colorado and Washington.

“I acknowledge that it may take a while, but like same-sex marriage,” stated Sen. Leach, “this will inevitably happen. Demographics and exposure will in time defeat irrational fears, old wives tales and bad science. This bill furthers the discussion, which hastens the day.”

This legislation, if approved, would help halt the arrest of thousands of Pennsylvanians annually. Since 2006, 24,685 arrests were made for just marijuana possession at a cost of over 300 million dollars to the state’s taxpayers.

“It is time for Pennsylvania to be a leader in jettisoning this modern-day prohibition, and ending a policy that has been so destructive, costly, and anti-scientific,” Sen. Leach declared.

Pennsylvania has long been considered a bellwether state, so to see the issue at least being entertained in the state legislature can only be a positive sign of things to come. Let’s hope other elected officials in Pennsylvania join with state Senator Leach to support these sensible reforms.

If NORML’s Take Action Center is anything to go by, the citizens of the Keystone State want it. In just the first 24 hours of going live, Pennsylvanians sent over 900 emails and letters to their elected officials urging them to support this legislation.

If you live in Pennsylvania and want to join in the call for marijuana legalization, simply click here and you can easily send a prewritten email or letter to your elected officials telling them it is time to support legislation to legalize and regulate marijuana, not criminalize it.

PENNSYLVANIANS: Click here to contact your representatives in favor of this bill today!

Don’t live in Pennsylvania? There is already marijuana reform legislation filed in ten other states, with many more sure to follow in the coming days. Be sure to keep checking NORML’s Take Action Center to see if your state is one of them and to contact your officials!

Together, we can NORMLIZE CONGRESS. Together, we will legalize marijuana.

Free Viewing Of Important Documentary: Breaking The Taboo

The producers of an important and well-received film documentary have contacted NORML asking for help to make as many free viewings of Breaking The Taboo as possible before the film goes into traditional theater distribution. Of the many documentaries in NORML’s forty two year-old archives, this SunDog Pictures produced film is a real stand out for it’s scope and breadth.

The film, narrated by actor Morgan Freeman, has received a terrific amount of publicity buzz regarding the subject matter (ending the war on some drugs…) as well for three of the key people interviewed in the documentary: former U.S. presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, and current president of Colombia Juan Manuel Santos.

All three men went on the record acknowledging the failures of the current policies and favor substantive reforms, notably Mr. Carter, who favors cannabis legalization.

This outstanding one hour documentary has already been viewed by nearly 470,000 concerned citizens from around the world.

Spanish-speaking version (narrated by Mexican actor/director Gael Garcia Bernal) is available here.

POLL: Americans Evenly Split on Marijuana Legalization, But Overwhelmingly View It As State Issue

Polling data released Tuesday by Rasmussen Reports shows the American public is now evenly split on the issue of marijuana legalization, with 45% in support, 45% opposed, and 10% undecided. This is up 5 points from the previous time Rasmussen polled this language in 2009, when the issue received just 40% support to 46% opposition.

However, an overwhelming amount believe the issue or marijuana legalization should be left to state governments. 60% of respondents replied that it was best left to the states, while only 27% thought it was an issue for the federal government.

Rasmussen also found that a minuscule 7% of Americans think the United States is winning the war on drugs, 82% stated the country is not winning, and 12% are not sure.

This poll was conducted by Rasmussen Reports from November 9th-10th and surveyed 1,000 Adults nationwide.

Also released this week was a new ABC/Post poll that had support for legalizing the possession of small amounts of marijuana at 48% support to 50% opposition amongst all adults.

Both of these polls show similar trends in support for marijuana legalization. Support for these policies is clearly still being held down by the 65+ demographic, who, in each survey, were the only age group to not have plurality support for legalization. In the Rasmussen poll, 49% of those ages 18-39 supported legalization, along with 48% of those 40-64. Support plummets amongst the 65+ crowd, who only support legalization by 26%. Similar trends were seen in the Post/ABC poll, where the 65+ age group were the only group to fall below 50% support for marijuana legalization, they instead opposed it by 67%.

These surveys also highlight the still present gender gap in legalization support. In both surveys women’s support trailed behind men, by 12 points in the Rasmussen poll and by 9 points in the Post/ABC poll.

ABANDONING THE ENLIGHTENMENT

There is difference between Holland’s history and the history of virtually every of the country in the world -except, perhaps, ancient Egypt.

When you look at the geology of the U.S., Romania, Kenya, Japan or almost any other country and see the splendors and vistas that the land offers, you may be tempted to exclaim what beauty nature created. When you look at the land in Holland, you see land that was reclaimed from the North Sea and from cold-water marshes. You would be looking at land that humans have created.

This history gave the Dutch a head start in their journey to a secular culture. Instead of churches encouraging people to pray for God to stop the flooding, local governments designed and created the dams used to drain the land and the windmills used to pump water from flooding it although it was below sea level.

In the early 17th century, the Dutch freed themselves from the yoke of superstitious, myth-driven Spanish rule and soon embraced the enlightenment. It had a profound effect upon the Dutch psyche and they created a nation that used rationalism and available science to guide them.

As the centuries passed, the Dutch contributed to world science and philosophy and have been guided by rationalism and real politic. Then, in the 1960’s, the Dutch looked at the marijuana laws and created a marijuana tolerance policy. By all measures it has been a successful policy and accomplished the goal of separating “soft drugs” from narcotics.

Now the enlightenment is on trial in Holland. The legislature outlawed the sale of marijuana to foreigners because towns along the borders didn’t like people crossing over to spend money in their towns. That sounds a little crazy to me too. I would pass a local law that coffee shops had to be at the furthest point inside a shopping center, sort of like milk at the back of the grocery store, so people would have to pass other shops to get to the buds.

The “morality fascists” probably didn’t consider the fact that Holland has lower marijuana and narcotic use than any of its prohibitionist neighbors. Nor was the fact that the tourist boards surveys show that 26 percent of visitors to Amsterdam make use of coffee shops. That’s why the tourist industry fears the imposition of the new law beginning January 1.

When I was a child, the inference around my world outlook was that science and technology, rather than faith and belief, were being used to make decisions regarding our lives. Now I see that the post-apocalyptic scenarios of science-fiction novels have come to reality. Cults, called religions, are brainwashing populations with lowered expectations into massive movements of irrationality. We can look at what is happening in Pakistan,  Afghanistan and in African countries such as Sudan, Somalia and Mali, torn asunder by religious and ethnic conflicts.

We look at those countries and say but it can’t happen here, but it is happening here. The anti-abortion movement, climate change deniers, evolution deniers and  marijuana prohibitionists are just as much part of the anti-enlightenment movement as the mobs who riot over insults to their prophet,  now dead more than a 1000 years. Most of these reality deniers follow the supposed beliefs of a hermit who they claim lived in the desert 2000 years ago although there are no factual proofs of his existence or that he wasn’t really a mushroom.

The enlightenment didn’t fill in the knowledge gaps. It gave us a map to get to where we are today. Then, in the last 200 years, our world-view was reshaped again. When the U.S. Constitution was written, its creators didn’t have an inkling about atoms, electricity and electro-magnetism, evolution, biological causes of infections, the universe much beyond the solar system, which was discovered to rotate around the sun just 200 years earlier, genetics or much of the information that we absorb as background knowledge and which gives us a rational basis for understanding how the world works .

Now the Dutch government wants to reject the information it has developed for creating a better society in favor of a moralistic, belief centered policy that will wind up wounding society. And here in the U.S. there is an election going on, after the worst storm ever to hit the Northeast portion of the country, and the term “climate change” is never mentioned, not even by Obama.

Time to dust off those mid-twentieth century science fiction novels. Their authors might be the true prophets.

How out of touch with reality is Allison Holcomb?

In a recent article in The Nation, The Colorado Cannabis Factor, authors Alyson Martin and Nuhin Rashidian argue that cannabis advocacy in Colorado could determine the results of the presidential election.

Meanwhile, however, some cannabis advocates won’t admit that Obama is to blame for federal prosecutors’ actions or that the crackdowns defy the Ogden memo, which discouraged U.S. attorneys from interfering with state laws regarding medical marijuana. Says Alison Holcomb, drug policy director of the ACLU in Washington State:

“The people who think that Obama has let them down have read too ?much into the memo and have laid too much at the feet of the federal?a dministration. Each U.S. attorney may be acting independently. The? federal prosecutor in eastern Washington has aggressively closed ?dispensaries while the one in the western part of the state left nearly ?100 open in and around Seattle.”

Holcomb, also the director of Washington’s flawed, pro-prosecution cannabis control?initiative 502, just doesn’t get it. The U.S. Department of Justice is ?directing a nationwide campaign against marijuana and patient access ?all over the country. The U.S. Attorneys didn’t all decide on their own ?to go after marijuana rather than corporate crooks; they got direction ?from Central Headquarters.

This explains why she produced an initiative with the help of ?prosecutors and former prosecutors and other prohibitionist types: She ?just doesn’t get it.

Holcomb is an embarrassment to the ACLU and to Civil Libertarians ?everywhere. Her actions show no common sense and no understanding ?of the true opposition. The criminal justice system is unwilling to? give up the lucrative drug prohibition business. They sometimes make? strategic retreats, but have never given up their goal of continuing? prohibition.

Washingtonians deserve better – not worse. 502 continues the war.

 

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