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Marijuana Legalizers Turn to Colorado, Washington in 2012

Category: Legalization | Posted on Wed, June, 6th 2012 by THCFinder
After California’s failed Proposition 19 initiative in 2010, marijuana legalizers are optimistic about two new ballot measures in Colorado and Washington.
 
At least three states are likely to vote on marijuana-legalization initiatives in 2012, but the measures in Colorado and Washington — two states with legalized medical pot and some permissive local laws — may stand the best chances of succeeding, having already qualified for the respective November ballots.
 
“These are going to be serious campaigns,” said Ethan Nadelmann, founder and executive director of the national drug-policy reform group Drug Policy Alliance. “Each one has a decent shot of becoming the first state in the country to embrace this policy change.”
 
Those who support legalization  got their hopes up briefly in 2010. A late-September poll by Field Research showed Proposition 19 winning in California, after an election cycle that saw pot become almost mainstream as a political topic. Marijuana was aided by California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s call for discussion of legalized pot in 2009, along with positive polling and the call by Rep. Loretta Sanchez, D-Calif.,  for legalization in response to the drug war. Suddenly, pot seemed to go from a social taboo to reasonable fodder for policy discussion.
 
Proposition 19 failed 46.5 percent to 53.5 percent.
 
In Colorado and Washington, however, the measures have more momentum.
 
Backers of Washington’s I-502 initiative, to tax and regulate the production and sale of marijuana statewide, have already raised $1.2 million since the beginning of their signature drive in 2011. In Colorado, the campaign for a similar initiative says it has attracted hundreds of thousands of dollars through Marijuana Policy Project, a national pot-legalization group.
 
“We’re just about to buy about $600,000 worth of TV for the fall,” said Mason Tvert, co-director of the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, which is pushing the initiative. Those will follow the TV ad shown below, which ran  on Mother’s Day, featuring a purported daughter emailing her mother to explain a conversion from college binge-drinking days to more mature, adult pot-smoking. (“I hope this makes sense, but if not, let’s talk,” the narrator proposes , thoughtfully.)
 

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Marijuana to be decriminalized in New York?

Category: Legalization | Posted on Tue, June, 5th 2012 by THCFinder
Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York is calling for his state to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana, noting that pot busts apprehend a disproportionate number of young African-Americans and Latinos.
 
New York City arrested 50,684 people in 2011 for possessing small amounts of cannabis, often in stop-and-frisk circumstances in which police ask suspects to empty their pockets.
 
The call by Cuomo, which must be approved by the New York Legislature, comes as two states — Washington and Colorado — get set to vote in November on measures that would legalize marijuana and put the state in charge of regulating its growing and sale.
 
Seattle is host each summer to Hempfest, the largest cannabis celebration in North America. The city also voted in 2003 to put marijuana possession at the bottom of its law enforcement priorities.
 
 

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Legalize it

Category: Legalization | Posted on Tue, June, 5th 2012 by THCFinder

 


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How Will Marijuana Legalization Initiative in Colorado Affect the Presidential Race?

Category: Legalization | Posted on Mon, June, 4th 2012 by THCFinder

President Barack Obama is currently seeking reelection to the office of President of the United States, and he is facing what many believe will be a close race against Republican contender Mitt Romney.

 

Most political observers agree that Colorado is an important state for Obama if he is to win. Under normal circumstances Colorado should be in the bag for Obama, especially considering young voters are his strong suit and a marijuana legalization initiative on the ballot this fall will bring young voters out in droves.

 

But will those voting for legalization also push the button for Obama considering the massive medical marijuana crackdown currently underway by his administration? Will they vote for a man who will likely attack the very initiative they just voted for?

 

Or will those voting for legalization avoid Obama and Romney and not vote for President, or vote for the person who would allow marijuana legalization to stand in the state, Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson?

 

Brian Vicente, Executive director of the advocacy group Sensible Colorado said, “This is an issue that is really meaningful to young people, people of color, disenfranchised communities.

 

"Democrats and Obama need these groups to win," Vicente said. "The path to the White House leads through Colorado. We feel we can motivate these groups."

 

But the Democratic party in Colorado doesn’t seem that threatened by legalization voters.

 

"If they get 40 percent" of voters supporting legalization, "they should throw themselves a party," said Matt Inzeo, a spokesman for Colorado's Democratic Party.

 

How nice. Democrats have gained the most from marijuana user voters but can’t even be bothered to act civil. Instead they sneer at the voters they think they don’t need.

 

Until marijuana users start voting for those who support their rights, politicians have no reason to respect their rights.

 

Source: http://www.reuters.com


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Hundreds of Economists: Marijuana Prohibition Costs Billions, Legalization Would Earn Billions

Category: Legalization | Posted on Mon, April, 30th 2012 by THCFinder
Over 300 economists, including three Nobel Laureates, recently signed a petition that encourages the president, Congress, governors and state legislatures to carefully consider marijuana legalization in America. The petition draws attention to an article by Harvard economist Jeffrey Miron, whose findings highlight the substantial cost-savings our government could incur if it were to tax and regulate marijuana, rather than needlessly spending billions of dollars enforcing its prohibition. 
 
Miron predicts that legalizing marijuana would save $7.7 billion per year in government expenditure on enforcement, in addition to generating $2.4 billion annually if taxed like most consumer goods, or $6 billion per year if taxed similarly to alcohol and tobacco. The economists signing the petition note that the budgetary implications of marijuana prohibition are just one of many factors to be considered, but declare it essential that these findings become a serious part of the national decriminalization discussion. 
 
The advantages of marijuana legalization extend far beyond an opportunity to make a dent in our federal deficit. The criminalization of marijuana is one of the many fights in the War on Drugs that has failed miserably. And while it's tempting to associate only the harder, "scarier" drugs with this botched crusade, the fact remains that marijuana prohibition is very much a part of the battle. The federal government has even classified marijuana as a Schedule 1 substance (its most serious category of substances), placing it in a more dangerous category than cocaine. More than 800,000 people are arrested for marijuana use and possession each year, and 46 percent of all drug prosecutions across the country are for marijuana possession. Yet this costly and time-consuming targeting of marijuana users by law enforcement and lawmakers has done little to quell use of the drug. 
 
The criminalization of marijuana has not only resulted in a startlingly high number of arrests, it also reflects the devastating disparate racial impact of the War on Drugs. Despite ample evidence that marijuana is used more frequently by white people, Blacks and Latinos account for a grossly disproportionate percentage of the 800,000 people arrested annually for marijuana use and possession. These convictions hinder one's ability to find or keep employment, vote or gain access to affordable housing. The fact that these hard-to-shake consequences – bad enough as they are — are suffered more frequently by a demographic that uses marijuana less makes our current policies toward marijuana all the more unfair, unwise and unacceptable. 
 

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Stand up for your rights!

Category: Legalization | Posted on Sat, April, 28th 2012 by THCFinder


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