Legalizing Weed Could Save Endangered Chimps
Category: Legalization | Posted on Tue, August, 13th 2013 by THCFinder
Marijuana and the protection of endangered species are rarely things we mention in the same conversation, never mind the same sentence. However, a growing problem in Nigeria suggests that it might be time to start.
Despite mounting scientific evidence to the contrary, marijuana is still classified as a narcotic drug by most world governments. Forbidden to grow this plant or to purchase it from growers legally, those who wish to take advantage of its physical and emotional benefits are forced into the black market.
Depending on who you ask, the illegal sale of marijuana generates between $10 and $120 billion in revenue a year. It’s no wonder criminals are willing to risk life and limb to grow, even if it means jail time or worse. Desperate for money, illegal marijuana growers have taken to Nigeria’s forests, a move that threatens resident wildlife.
The Nigeria-Cameroon chimpanzee is considered the most threatened of the four subspecies and is listed as Endangered by the IUCN Red List. Unfortunately for this threatened chimp, its home happens to be the very forests that marijuana growers are clear-cutting in order to meet the black market demand for weed.
During a 2012 survey, researchers participating in The Southwest/Niger Delta Forest Project found that half of the deforestation occurring in these reserves from 2010 to 2012 appeared to be the result of cannabis cultivation.
“Demand for the marijuana product is soaring,” Rachel Ashegbofe Ikemeh, Coordinator and Principal Investigator of the The Southwest/Niger Delta Forest Project, told Mongabay.com. “Profits from marijuana crops can come in within 6 – 8 months of planting, fetching 2 – 3 times more money than could be gotten from cultivating other food crop…”
This is a side-effect of marijuana prohibition that you won’t hear on the radio or in a politician’s speech. But it’s important to consider. Keeping cannabis illegal, despite widespread public approval for recreational weed, or at the very least decriminalization, is taking its toll on the planet, not to mention our economy and culture.
Read more: http://www.care2.com/
Alaska, Rhode Island Will Legalize Marijuana Next
Category: Legalization | Posted on Tue, August, 13th 2013 by THCFinder
As support for marijuana legalization continues to grow, Rob Kampia, the executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project, believes that momentum will drive two more states to follow Colorado and Washington in legalizing recreational weed in 2014.
In a recent interview with Reason, Kampia made several legal pot predictions.
"I think the next state to legalize will be Alaska, through a ballot initiative that we're running in August of 2014," Kampia said to Reason. "Through state legislatures, I think the first state is going to be Rhode Island."
Kampia went on to predict that many other states will also be voting on marijuana legalization on the same day in 2016, including: California, Nevada, Arizona, Maine and possibly Massachusetts.
Alaska and Rhode Island both appear to be poised for legalization. In Alaska, Public Policy Polling recently surveyed voters and found that 54 percent are currently in favor of legal weed.
Rhode Island decriminalized less than an ounce of marijuana back in April and a separate bill rolled out this year would legalize marijuana for recreational use. A survey last year conducted for the Marijuana Policy Project by Public Policy Polling found that 52 percent of Rhode Islanders would support treating weed no differently than alcohol.
Kampia's final, and perhaps boldest, prediction was that federal marijuana law would finally change before the end of the decade. "My prediction, changing federal law will be 2019," Kampia said. "But we're going to have to deal with a lot of difficult states after 2019, like Mississippi and Alabama."
Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com
Lawmakers In Mexico City To Consider Legalizing Cannabis Next Month
Category: Legalization | Posted on Fri, August, 9th 2013 by THCFinder
Mexico City’s Federal District City Council, and Mayor Miguel Mancera, announced recently that talks will begin in September regarding the potential reformation of Mexico City’s cannabis policies.
According to the announcement, lawmakers in September will debate the health, economic and security aspects of cannabis, including the possibility of legalizing the substance for medicinal, or even recreational uses.
One of the changes lawmakers will consider is legislation announced in June - to be filed in September – which would legalize the possession of up to 25 grams of cannabis, as well as private home cultivation.
“We will be very responsible in this debate,” stated Manuel Granados, chair of the city council’s governance committee, “In Mexico City we agree on replacing criminal policies with health policies. We are ready to hold this debate and, at the right time, to legislate”.
New Poll Shows Americans Want Legal Weed, Even If They Don't Smoke It
Category: Legalization | Posted on Thu, August, 8th 2013 by THCFinder
After vicious debate over the position marijuana is to take in our society, it's time we set the record straight. In particular, it's high time we dispel a growing fear that our younger generation has increasingly used — and more terrifyingly — abused, marijuana.
In reality, a recently released Gallup poll has found that "Even as Americans' support for legalizing marijuana has doubled, and more than 20 states have loosened marijuana restrictions in various ways … [there is] relatively little increase in the percentage of U.S. adults who say they have tried marijuana. 38% percent of Americans admit to having tried marijuana, compared with 34% in 1999 and 33% in 1985." As the majority of young adults who tried marijuana in the 1970s replace older Americans who never did try the drug, the rate of total Americans who have ever tried the drug has increased only slightly, regardless of the fears of a much older generation.
Actually, those who fear the loss of this generation's purity should take a look back at their own cultural history, when marijuana usage skyrocketed in the 1970s, rising from 4% in 1969 to 12% in 1973 and 24% in 1977.
Since its peak at 56% of young experimenting adults in 1977, marijuana use among young adults has actually followed a slow, but noticeable, decline. In fact, marijuana usage coincidentally jumped the same time President Nixon declared the United States "War on Drugs" in 1971.
Interestingly, though the general rate of use has been the same, the demographic patterns for Americans' past experimentation with marijuana and current use have changed. Gender use has evened out, with 8% of men and 6% of women saying they smoke pot. More liberals (49%) have tried marijuana than moderates (40%) and conservatives (32%). Likely the most stereotyped and shocking of drug demographics is that "There are relatively minor differences in marijuana use by race — between whites and nonwhites — and by education. There are no income-related differences among those who say they have tried marijuana, but lower-income Americans are the most likely to say they currently use it."
Read more: http://www.policymic.com
New Initiative Filed In Arkansas To Legalize Cannabis
Category: Legalization | Posted on Tue, August, 6th 2013 by THCFinder
The nonprofit organization Arkansans For Medical Cannabis has filed a new initiative with the Arkansas Attorney General which would legalize cannabis for all adults 21 and older.
The attorney general will now conduct a legal review of the ballot language. If the language is approved, signature collection can begin; the group is hoping to put the proposal to a vote of the people in the 2014 general election.
If the initiative – which is a constitutional amendment – is approved, cannabis possession, cultivation and licensed retail sales will be legalized in the State of Arkansas for adults 21 and older; industrial hemp legalization is included. Robert Reed, Chairman of Arkansas For Medical Cannabis, tells us that under this proposed law people will be able to grow cannabis “just like you do grapes”. According to Reed, the initiative will effectively put an end to cannabis prohibition in the state.
UN Drug Agencies Fret Over Uruguay Marijuana Vote
Category: Legalization | Posted on Sat, August, 3rd 2013 by THCFinder
Wednesday night’s vote in the Uruguayan chamber of deputies to approve a state-run marijuana commerce would make the South American nation the first to create legal pot markets, and that’s making United Nations anti-drug bureaucracies nervous. Both the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) issued statements Thursday fretting about the vote.
Uruguay hasn’t legalized the marijuana market yet—that will require a vote in the Uruguayan Senate this fall—but the Vienna-based UN organs aren’t waiting. Charged with enforcing the global drug prohibition regime, and its legal backbone, the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs and successor treaties, the INCB and UNODC are raising the alarm about the apparent looming breach of the treaty.
“The INCB has noted with concern a draft law under consideration in Uruguay which, if adopted, would permit the sale of cannabis herb for non-medical use,” INCB head Dr. Raymond Yans said in a statement. “Such a law would be in complete contravention to the provisions of the international drug control treaties, in particular the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, to which Uruguay is a party.”
The INCB said it had always “aimed at maintaining a dialogue with the government of Uruguay” and complained that Montevideo wasn’t paying attention to it. “The Board regrets that the government of Uruguay refused to receive an INCB mission before the draft law was submitted to parliament,” Yans said.
The statement further urged Uruguayan leaders “to ensure that the country remains fully compliant with international law which limits the use of narcotic drugs, including cannabis, exclusively to medical and scientific purposes” and warned that legalization ” might have serious consequences for the health and welfare of the population and for the prevention of cannabis abuse among the youth.”
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