Indiana State Police leader says he would legalize marijuana and tax it

Category: Legalization | Posted on Wed, November, 28th 2012 by THCFinder
When it comes to legalizing marijuana, the politics can be tricky.
Paul Whitesell, superintendent of the Indiana State Police, learned that Tuesday after he told the State Budget Committee: “If it were up to me, I do believe I would legalize it and tax it.”
Later in the day, after news of his comments spread, the Indiana State Police issued a written statement clarifying the words of the agency’s leader. The statement described Whitesell’s comments as a “philosophical” opinion, not an official one.
“Although the superintendent personally understands the theoretical argument for taxation and legalization, as a police officer with over 40 years of experience he does not support the legalization of marijuana,” the statement said.
Whitesell is the latest in series of state officials in recent months to bring attention to the issue of decriminalizing or lessening penalties for marijuana possession.
Some political observers say the growing conversation indicates the issue could receive serious debate when the Indiana General Assembly convenes in January. However, considerable doubts remain that Indiana would go as far as Colorado and Washington, where voters earlier this month approved ballot initiatives to legalize small, recreational amounts of the drug.
Robert Dion, a political science professor at the University of Evansville, said that while there is a shift in the national attitude toward marijuana, he doesn’t think conservative Indiana will be among the leaders in easing laws against pot.
However, two Indiana lawmakers have said they would like to move in that direction.


More states ponder legal marijuana as feds loom

Category: Legalization | Posted on Tue, November, 27th 2012 by THCFinder
The battle over the legal recreational use of marijuana heads to several more states, as officials in Colorado and Washington wait to see how the federal government will react to their new pro-pot laws.
For now, it seems like the next legalization efforts will be focused on New England.
But the issue over legalized pot has crept into relations between the United States and Mexico.
Voters in Washington state and Colorado approved referendums in November that would allow citizens to use small amounts of marijuana, sold by the state, under approved conditions.
The fight over legalized pot seems headed for a court showdown and touches on several constitutional issues.
The federal government has selectively enforced its rights under the Controlled Substances Act to bust up medical marijuana facilities in the 17 states that have legalized medical marijuana.
But the widespread enforcement of national marijuana laws is quite problematic financially for the federal government if it has to staff law enforcement efforts within Colorado and Washington.


Colorado's pot-legalizing Amendment 64 moves a step forward to becoming law today

Category: Legalization | Posted on Mon, November, 26th 2012 by THCFinder
The marijuana-legalizing Amendment 64 moves a step closer to becoming Colorado law today.
County clerks from across the state by the end of today must have submitted their certified vote totals for the fall election.
State law sets out a timetable giving Secretary of State Scott Gessler until Dec. 6 to certify the totals. Then, Gov. John Hickenlooper has 30 days to formally sign off.
“We’ll review the canvass board reports from each of the counties and then tabulate all of the results from the counties and issue the certified results,” said Rich Coolidge, a spokesman for Gessler. “Most of them will come in today.”
Amendment 64, which legalizes small amounts of recreational pot for personal use, takes effect upon Hickenlooper’s signature. Under the law, anyone 21 and older may possess up to an ounce of pot, and can smoke it in a private place without violating state law.
The ballot measure also establishes a system of marijuana stores, regulation and potential taxation, but those portions phase in over the next several years.
The Boulder and Denver district attorneys have already ended simple marijuana-possession prosecutions, although Weld and Larimer prosecutors say they will consider each prosecution on a case-by-case basis.
Because marijuana remains illegal on the federal level, state officials are struggling to reconcile the conflicting laws. Hickenlooper and Attorney General John Suthers have both said they will support the state law because it passed with broad voter support, but have cautioned that implementing the law may be difficult.


Legalization of marijuana

Category: Legalization | Posted on Fri, November, 23rd 2012 by THCFinder
Marijuana is an illegal substance because the government claims marijuana is a threat. However, there has not been a single death related to marijuana, and it should be legalized.
Alcohol is legal and proven to be more addictive than marijuana. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports numerous alcohol-related deaths annually.
Another reason marijuana is illegal is because the government categorizes it in the same class of drugs as heroin and PCP. Pharmaceutical companies play a big role in the politics of keeping marijuana illegal. Furthermore, I strongly agree that patients should be able to use marijuana for their pain and nausea management.
I know of two good friends who have medical marijuana cards, and they both grow their own marijuana. My friend in Bakersfield told me there are more than a dozen benefits from marijuana. For example, on a cold day when your bones are hurting from arthritis, it helps immediately for pain relief. Also, he said you can rub cannabis lotion on the pain you’re having, and it starts working in less than five seconds.
Over-the-counter medication, when taken in excess, can kill you and is much more dangerous than smoking marijuana.
Marijuana should be legalized.


Marijuana: The Answer to a Gloomy Economy?

Category: Legalization | Posted on Fri, November, 23rd 2012 by THCFinder
5 News told you that election night made history. Two states legalized marijuana and another was added to the list of states that use it for medical purposes. Not a single person from our area wanted to go on camera but many wanted to talk about it. A majority feel marijuana remains illegal for political reasons, and it should be legalized. Others said it's illegal for a reason, but after learning how much money it could generate, many understand why it's such a big issue.
"Marijuana has never caused me a problem in my life - and I chose to use it at the advice of doctors," explained Ken Robidoux, who's epileptic.
But how safe is it? Studies show cannabis is actually ranked one of the least harmful drugs. It does less physical harm and has a smaller dependence than tobacco, alcohol and some of your most common prescription drugs. Dr. Paul Clancy, an emergency room physician, said there's fewer side effects for most people with cannabis than there are with opiates.
A college professor and business owner said marijuana is a life saver. After taking medications prescribed to him by doctors, he gained 120 pounds, his intestines shut down and later exploded. He was put in the ICU at Mon General where doctors saved his life. 
Delegate Mike Manypenny is fighting for medical marijuana in our state. "Substance abuse costs the state of West Virginia $2 billion a year in direct and indirect costs. By implementing a compassionate use medical marijuana bill in West Virginia, would free up law enforcement to look into and investigate and prosecute more serious crimes," explained Manypenny.
Using Oregon as an example, they now charge $200 for a medical marijuana card. In eight months that generated $7.5 million for the state. A Harvard study estimates that if they legalized recreational marijuana it would pump in $140 million a year, while saving $60 million. The savings being related to law enforcement.
"I really don't see a down side to passing Manypenny's bill. I think it should be passed as soon as possible," said Dr. Clancy.
Under federal law, marijuana remains illegal. The Drug Enforcement Agency continues to raid and arrest dispensary workers across the country. Even though the DEA's chief administrator and Senator Joe Manchin agree it should be between a doctor and patient to make the decision - neither of them are for the idea. 
"Any revenue that comes from people getting addicted is the wrong type of revenue that we shouldn't need," said Sen. Manchin. "I just think it's wrong from that standpoint. I would hope the state of West Virginia would choose to protect it's people."
85% of viewers that participated in our last Facebook Poll Question feel medical marijuana should become a reality in our state. Now 5 News wants to know how you feel about recreational marijuana. Head to our Facebook page and cast your vote.


Legalize - 2 down and 48 to go

Category: Legalization | Posted on Wed, November, 21st 2012 by THCFinder



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