After California decriminalized marijuana, teen arrest, overdose and dropout rates fell
Category: Culture | Posted on Thu, October, 16th 2014 by THCFinder
A new report from the Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice adds to the growing body of evidence that legalizing or decriminalizing marijuana does not lead to any number of doomsday scenarios envisioned by legalization opponents. Looking specifically at California, where full marijuana decriminalization went into effect on Jan. 1, 2011, the report finds that "marijuana decriminalization in California has not resulted in harmful consequences for teenagers, such as increased crime, drug overdose, driving under the influence, or school dropout. In fact, California teenagers showed improvements in all risk areas after reform."
Most notable in the above table is the drop in school dropout rates. Recent studies have suggested links between heavy marijuana use and low school completion rates. But many experts question the direction of causality in this relationship, suggesting that there could be any number of confounding factors that account for this relationship. While it's still early in California's decriminalization experiment, the numbers above should suggest we cast a skeptical eye on claims of plummeting academic achievement in a post-legalization world.
In fact, as the report authors write: "By a variety of measures, California’s teenage behaviors actually improved dramatically after marijuana was effectively legalized — improvements that occurred more weakly or not at all among older Californians and among teenagers nationwide."
Now of course this doesn't address causality, and these numbers shouldn't be taken to imply that decriminalization caused these declines. But they do show, pretty clearly, that in the two years since full-scale decriminalization went into effect, California's kids are still all right. The sky hasn't fallen. And they add to a mounting body of research that shows, for instance:
that teen drug and alcohol use continues to fall, even as more states decriminalize marijuana and make it available for medical purposes;
that states with medical marijuana laws haven't seen any uptick in teen marijuana use;
that states with medical marijuana have actually seen decreases in prescription drug overdoses;
that Alaska, where personal marijuana use has been de facto legalized for nearly 40 years, is completely average on a variety of economic and demographic indicators;
and that traffic fatalities have fallen in Colorado since legalization there.
By contrast, there is little evidence of increased social harms in states where marijuana has been decriminalized. The one credible study I'm aware of is a DEA report finding that more Colorado drivers involved in car crashes are testing positive for marijuana use. But a bucket of salt is needed here: unlike alcohol, inactive marijuana metabolites remain in the body long after consumption - days or weeks, depending on frequency of use. But the presence of metabolites doesn't necessarily indicate you were high at the time of the test - only that you got high some time in the days or weeks prior.
Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com
Infant Dies After Being Removed From Cannabis Smoking Biological Parents
Category: Culture | Posted on Mon, October, 13th 2014 by THCFinder
Warning; This story is extremely upsetting and may trigger extreme emotions, especially since the situation that this tragedy occured in could've been prevented many times. Please prepare yourself.
Colorado is the last place that you would expect a child to be taken from biological parental care because of marijuana use. But unfortunately, due to the negativity associated with cannabis and people's utter ignorance, it does happen. As in the case of baby Angel Lane, an eleven month old that was taken from her parents after her parents were found to be arguing and her father admitted to smoking cannabis. According to recent statistics and studies released, homes that involve cannabis users are actually less likely to be homes with domestic violence problems. Angel being removed should have been the last step in the process and only if the child was in actual harm (she wasn't).
The foster mother, 20 year old Sydney Danielle White, is married to the brother of Angel's mother. While the child was in her care and papers were being processed for White to adopt the child, White reportedly shook the baby girl when she wouldn't stop crying. After gripping her by the throat and dropping the small child, White only stopped when her biological 2 year old came in to the room and begged her to stop. White put the infant in her crib and left her alone. When someone tried to wake the baby, she wouldn't respond and stopped moving on the entire right side of her body. Angel was taken to St. Mary's Hospital on the 16th of September and then air lifted to Denver Children's Hospital. After being taken off life support, this little baby left this world on September 17th, 2014.
Angel was taken from her biological parents after Theodore Place, the father, admitted to human services that he smoked marijuana. The parents were allegedly fighting and this admittance to using the plant was enough for human services to intervene in the family's life and take the infant away, giving her to a too young foster mother (According to Colorado law, a foster parent must be over the age of 21 to legally foster a child and White, 20, obviously didn't meet that requirement). During the separation from their daughter, the Place's assumed that their daughter was safe, especially since White is married to a family member.
But the home that Angel went to wasn't screened properly, as you can clearly see, even though the biological parents were under the impression that the home had been looked over by human services. Tierra, Angel's mother, said that her brother checked in with her every day about Angel and the brother said that the baby was developing in a healthy manner. Tierra's statement to a local news station is heartbreaking, saying "This is like losing her twice. I don't know how someone could possibly do that to a baby... Inside I know she is walking with god."
Local Cannabis Shops Boost Econom
Category: Culture | Posted on Mon, October, 13th 2014 by THCFinder
The cannabis industry is set to make people a lot of money. From the trimmers to the growers to the dispensary owners, the leaves of the plant aren't the only green things flying around these days. There's hundreds of millions of dollars sitting out there waiting to be made and since Colorado made the move to legalize two years ago, they've really begun to see how the weed business is benefiting them in more ways than ever imagined.
Revenue wasn't something that people doubted but the amount of it wasn't expected. Raking in well over a million dollars in taxes within the first few days of the legal cannabis stores, people were shocked at how much money a single plant could make a state in such a short amount of time. And the money just keeps coming. With Denver being one of the hottest marijuana tourist spots in the US, surpassing even California in the "Places Stoners Want To Visit", it's no surprise that added benefits are coming from the pot shops located in the mile high city.
The Colorado Harvest Company is a marijuana shop in Denver and Tim Cullen, the co-owner, recently commissioned a study to find out how much his company was making Denver financially. Jack Strauss from the University of Denver helped to do the study and found that Cullen's two shops have generated more than six times the sales of average retail stores in the city. Not to mention the pot shop had eight times the economic impact as the regular retail shops. If we're going to talk about jobs here as well, we can't neglect to mention that Cullen's two storefronts manage to employ seven times more than an average retail store. Add in the fact that the average wage of the marijuana business is more than $17 an hour. That's more than most people working hourly jobs and that's just the average.
With more money going in to the economy, more people get to make more money as well. The benefit of the recreational cannabis shops is incredible. These companies are more apt to pay employees well and to put back in to the community in a positive way. Considering how much money has been put back in to the city of Denver, it would be silly to limit the potential of the recreational shops. Cannabis can fix a lot of the problems that the deterioration of society has caused. People just need to realize it's real potential.
Marijuana Cause Of NASCAR Death?
Category: Culture | Posted on Fri, October, 10th 2014 by THCFinder
When you think of cannabis, you don't exactly think of people losing all common sense and doing something completely and utterly irrational. Sure, sometimes people freak out and call the cops. But that's not the worst thing in the world. What is pretty bad is the NASCAR incident that happened on August 9th, involving 20-year-old Kevin Ward Jr. and internationally known racer Tony Stewart.
When Stewart's car bumped in to Ward's during a race at Canandaigua Motorsports Park in upstate New York, Ward was hurled in to the wall but remained unhurt. He then emerged from his car and walked down the still live race track (the caution had been thrown out), waving his arms in an apparent attempt to confront the driver that had just sent him tumbling in to the wall. Ward was then struck by the rear tire of Stewart's car and was thrown in to the air. He died of blunt force trauma from the incident.
When the case finally went to trial, the grand jury decided to not indict Stewart and the county attorney revealed a shocking piece of information that of course, will negatively effect the cannabis community because someone will obviously take it the wrong way. R. Michael Tantillo released the bit of information that Ward was apparently high on cannabis when he died. Tantillo said that Ward was high enough "to impair judgment".
Now as stated above, one doesn't exactly get stoned and walk down a live racetrack. No matter how high you are, the probability of this happening is very slim. Not only that but a stoned NASCAR driver obviously wouldn't be toking before an important race if he wasn't experienced in the world of high driving. Those cars cost millions of dollars and the sponsorships are worth just as much. Though Ward may have been stoned at his time of death, it's much more likely that the reason he got out of his car to confront Stewart was one of saving face, plus a surge of pure adrenaline/testosterone.
Washington Residents Fighting Over Smoke
Category: Culture | Posted on Thu, October, 9th 2014 by THCFinder
Ok before we get in to it, I want you to think of one thing that you don't indulge in that others around you do. Whether this is eating meat, smoking cigarettes, styling your hair a certain way. Just think of something in normal society that you see that you don't agree with. Now, imagine making a huge to do about it with the police. Say that you see someone with a mohawk and you're so offended by said mohawk that you call the cops and complain about your rights being violated because you don't want to see mohawks, nor do you sport one. This scenario seems pretty bullshit right?
In Washington, this exact scenario is happening but with cannabis smoking. While cigarette smokers (notice how I'm using cigarettes here and not alcohol... NOTICE IT) get to puff away outside of restaurants, on bar patios, front porches, outside of schools, etc, cannabis users aren't allowed to smoke in any public place. Seeing that the cannabis laws are still somewhat new, it seems like keeping pot smoking on the down low for a bit might be in the best interest of the community, just to see how things go. But still, tobacco users are allowed to smoke where ever and whenever they want pretty much, even though the issues associated with Big T are far more than those associated with cannabis.
Recently, a woman who wishes to remain anonymous (probably because she knows her argument is invalid), told KATU-2 On Your Side, that since I-502 passed, she feels that her rights as a non cannabis user are being violated because she can smell weed being smoked in her neighbors yard. "This is something that needs to be talked about, people's rights are being violated by the people who have been given the right to smoke pot," she said. So this brilliant woman took it upon herself to then blast her opinion over social networks, as most people who don't get enough attention in real life do. "I just have to say that it really sucks that I have such a nice backyard that I cannot fully enjoy because when their neighbors start smoking their "legal" pot, it always ends up in my yard. It stinks so bad. I am not pleased right now at all."
The woman then goes on to state that if she were to enjoy a beer in her yard, no one would know what she was doing since the smell of beer doesn't carry like the smell of cannabis does. Well maybe if the two substances being compared were the same, rather than one being a liquid and one being an inhalant, the comparison would be a little more fair. So, as a rebuttal to this woman's poorly thought out argument, I would like to bring up cigarettes again. I personally do not smoke cigarettes. I used to and when a case of deadly bronchitis infected my lungs, I quit. Fast. With doctors telling me I was close to death, I really needed to eliminate the toxic tobacco from my life... If I wanted to keep it that is. Since then, I haven't smoked cigarettes and when I do pass by someone at the mall entrance or when I go in to a bar, I am offended by the smell and sight of people smoking because I know what they can do to people. And anyone that tells you cigarette smoke smells good is a straight up liar.
If people can smoke cigarettes in their backyards, the smoke can carry and permeate other yards. But cigarettes are completely legal and I'm sure that this woman wouldn't have a bit to say if her neighbors were chain smoking Marlborough's on their porch. But seeing as how non-cigarette smokers aren't calling the cops and whining on social media about the smell of cigarettes that covers most heavily trafficked areas in society (bus stops, tattoo shops, grocery stores, bars, hotels, backyards, on the street, near schools, gas stations, etc), it seems unfair to complain about weed. If her rights are being violated by a little bit of weed smoke, then my rights are being violated every time someone smokes a cigarette where I can smell it.
This small outburst of hate towards cannabis users in the privacy of their own homes is not an assault on this woman's rights or anyone else's for that matter. These tokers in Washington (and Colorado and all the states where the plant is allowed) are doing what the law tells them to do and they're still catching heat for it. People need to accept the fact that cannabis is here and also, to leave tokers alone when they're doing virtually nothing wrong.
Melissa Etheridge Is Starting A Line Of Cannabis Infused Wines
Category: Culture | Posted on Thu, October, 9th 2014 by THCFinder
I have been a fan of Melissa Etheridge for a long time now. I’m not referring to her music, which is good. I’m referring to her as a person. Melissa Etheridge has been a long time supporter of marijuana reform, way before it was fashionable to do so. She is a cancer survivor, and frequently attests to marijuana’s medical value and how it helped her battle cancer. So I was very happy when I heard that Melissa is starting a line of cannabis infused wines. I’m not a fan of wine, but if you are, I strongly encourage you to buy her products and support someone who supports you. Per Marijuana.Com:
Etheridge wants to bring cannabis-infused wines and other products to states like California, New Hampshire and the other 21 states with medical cannabis laws. She explained in her Bloomberg interview that she wants to present cannabis in a non-threatening manner.
“I really look forward to bringing this to the world in a not scary way.” Etheridge said. “Not a drug outlaw way. It’s not that anymore. This is an American business that really needs a lot of help.”
Below is video footage of Melissa talking about medical marijuana and her industry aspirations:
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