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Legalizing Marijuana Wont Hurt Kids, Says RI Hospital Study

Category: News | Posted on Wed, November, 2nd 2011 by THCFinder
Will legalizing marijuana in Rhode Island increase use among youth? No, says a new study out of Rhode Island Hospital.
Physician/researcher and lead author Esther Choo, MD, MPH, is presenting the findings of the study today at the American Public Health Association Annual Meeting and Exposition.
 
Choo, an emergency medicine physician with Rhode Island Hospital, and her coauthors explain that the state-level legalization of medical marijuana has raised concerns about increased accessibility and appeal of the drug to youth, who are most vulnerable to public messages about drug use and to the adverse consequences of marijuana. Their study was performed to assess the impact of medical marijuana legalization in Rhode Island in 2006. The researchers compared trends in adolescent marijuana use between Rhode Island and Massachusetts using a self-report called the Youth Risk Behavioral Surveillance System. In their study, they included surveys completed between 1997 and 2009.
 
Based on their analysis of 32,570 students, they found that while marijuana use was common throughout the study period, there were no statistically significant differences in marijuana use between states in any year.
 
Medical marijuana: no statistical threat to kids
 
Choo says, “Our study did not find increases in adolescent marijuana use related to Rhode Island’s 2006 legalization of medical marijuana; however, additional research may follow future trends as medical marijuana in Rhode Island and other states becomes more widely used.”
 

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More states want federal government's OK to grow hemp

Category: News | Posted on Wed, November, 2nd 2011 by THCFinder
It hasn't gotten the attention of medical marijuana, but a growing number of states have passed laws authorizing the growth of hemp and are attempting to get the federal government to make it legal nationwide.
 
Hemp can be cultivated for fiber or oilseed, and it is used to make thousands of products worldwide including clothing and auto parts. From 1999 through last year, 17 states have enacted measures that would either permit controlled cultivation or authorize research of industrial hemp, according to the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML).
 
Colorado was the most recent to authorize research in 2010. Maine, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, Vermont and West Virginia have passed laws authorizing cultivation, according to NORML.
 

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Legal Pain Killers Killed 15,000 People In 2008, Marijuana Likely Killed Zero

Category: News | Posted on Wed, November, 2nd 2011 by THCFinder
Yesterday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that the number of deaths from overdoses of legal prescription painkillers had more than tripled over a decade, killing a shocking 15,000 people in 2008 — more than died from heroin and cocaine overdoses combined. This “epidemic” of pain killer abuse is troubling in its own right and demands public policy answers, but it also helps to underscore the incongruity of the current drug policy.
 
The report comes as a growing number of states and the federal government debate the prohibition of marijuana. Just this week, the White House rejected several marijuana legalization petitions.
 
Marijuana is a Schedule I controlled substance, giving the highest level of restriction possible. Painkillers like OxyCotin are Schedule II, while others like Vicodin are Schedule III. Yet while these less restricted drugs killed 15,000 people last year alone, “There are virtually no reports of fatal cannabis overdose in humans,” a widely-cited study from the National Institute of Mental Health found. Studies on animals have found lethal doses practically impossible to achieve, as a human physically could not consume the required volume.
 
As spelled out in the Controlled Substance Act, there are three requirements for Schedule I classifications, according to the DEA:
Substances in this schedule have a high potential for abuse, have no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, and there is a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug or other substance under medical supervision.
 
Of course, 16 states and the District of Columbia now recognize medicinal benefits of marijuana and have established safety standards. And while there is no doubt that marijuana has the potential for abuse, advocates say it is not high enough — on par with cocaine and heroin — to merit Schedule I status, and no higher than prescription drugs, the danger of which the CDC report clearly demonstrates.
 
In fact, when marijuana was initially classified as a Schedule I drug in 1970, its placement was intended to be only provisional pending the findings of the National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse, also known as the Shafer Commission, as it was led by then-Pennsylvania Gov. Raymond Shafer (R). Two years later, the commission released its findings, concluding: “Neither the marihuana user nor the drug itself can be said to constitute a danger to public safety.” Nonetheless, the Nixon administration did nothing and let the drug remain classified as Schedule I.
 
In a letter sent just last week, nine congressmen, including Republican Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (CA) — called on President Obama to reschedule marijuana as either a Schedule II or II drug — the same status as Vicodin or Oxycontin. Reps. Barney Frank (D-MA) and Ron Paul (R-TX) have also introduced a bill to do just that.
 

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Polls Show Marijuana Legalization More Popular Than President Obama

Category: News | Posted on Tue, November, 1st 2011 by THCFinder
WASHINGTON, DC -Crimebeat- “Late Friday night the White House issued a typical evasive rejection of the several marijuana legalization petitions that collected more signatures than any other issue on its “We the People” website,” stated retired Baltimore narcotics cop Neill Franklin. “Even though recent polls show that more voters support marijuana legalization than approve of President Obama’s job performance, the White House categorically dismissed the notion of reforming any laws, focusing its response on the possible harms of marijuana use instead of addressing the many harms of prohibition detailed in the petitions”.
 
One of the popular petitions, submitted Franklin, called on the Obama administration to simply stop interfering with states’ efforts to set their own marijuana laws.
 
“It’s maddening that the administration wants to continue failed prohibition polices that do nothing to reduce drug use and succeed only in funneling billions of dollars into the pockets of the cartels and gangs that control the illegal market,” said Franklin, who also serves as executive director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP), a group of cops, judges and prosecutors who support legalizing and regulating drugs. “If the president and his advisers think they’re being politically savvy by shying away from much-needed change to our drug policies, they’re wrong. The recent Gallup poll shows that more Americans support legalizing marijuana than support continuing prohibition, so the administration is clearly out of step with the people it claims to represent. President Obama needs to remember his campaign pledge not to waste scarce resources interfering with state marijuana laws and his earlier statement about the ‘utter failure’ of the drug war.”
 

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Medical pot group sues Obama administration over California crackdown

Category: News | Posted on Fri, October, 28th 2011 by THCFinder

Fed up with the raids and constant harassment, a local Medical Marijuana group has decided enough is enough, it's time to take action.

Los Angeles (CNN) -- A medical marijuana advocacy group sued the Obama administration Thursday, saying its policy "to subvert local and state medical marijuana laws in California" is unconstitutional.
 
Americans for Safe Access accused the U.S. Justice Department of deploying aggressive SWAT-style raids, prosecuting medical marijuana patients and providers, and threatening local officials for implement state medical pot laws.
 
The group, a nonprofit based in Oakland, California, that says it's the country's largest medical marijuana advocacy organization, cited U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag of the northern district of California in its federal lawsuit filed in San Francisco.
"Under the Tenth Amendment, the government may not commandeer the law-making function of the state or its subdivisions or indirectly through the selective enforcement of its drug laws," the lawsuit said. "It is this misuse of the government's commerce clause powers, designed to deprive the state of its sovereign ability to chart a separate course, that forms the basis of the plaintiff's claim."
 

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Give tickets for small pot busts

Category: News | Posted on Thu, October, 27th 2011 by THCFinder

It looks like Chicago police may be on the right track afterall, the local sheriffs departyment wants to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana realizing that posession charges should be nothing more than a ticket and not jail time for such small amounts that are obviously for personal use.

A handful of Chicago aldermen and Cook County Commissioner John Fritchey are calling for the city and neighboring towns to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana possession.
 
The move would allow officers to issue a $200 ticket to someone suspected of carrying 10 grams or less of marijuana, rather than spending hours off the streets to haul someone to jail on a misdemeanor charge. It is similar to an ordinance passed by county commissioners in recent years that calls for issuing a ticket to those busted with marijuana in the forest preserves, unincorporated Cook County and areas where the sheriff has primary policing duties.
 
“We want to make it clear — we’re not approving the smoking of pot,” said Ald. Ariel Reboyras (30th). “What we’re asking is the police to make the right decision when someone has 10 grams or less in their possession — simply write them a ticket and let them go. That police officer will stay working on his beat.”
 
Considering the time and money spent on an arrest or jailing someone, Reboyras said: “We can better use our resources in the streets.”
 

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