Colorado governor won’t rule out banning marijuana again. Here’s why

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has two facts in front of him: Since 2014 crime has been rising in his state, outstripping the national trend, and since 2014 recreational use of marijuana has been legal.

Whether the two are connected is hotly debated — and if they are, then what? For the first time publicly, Hickenlooper told CNN he doesn’t rule out recriminalizing recreational marijuana, even if that’s a long shot.

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McLean, Scott and Weisfeldt, Sara. “Colorado governor won’t rule out banning marijuana again. Here’s why.” www.cnn.com. 20 April 2018. Web. 23 April 2018.

Why a Federal Judge Dismissed a Lawsuit That Could Have Legalized Marijuana Nationwide

A federal judge on Monday tossed out a lawsuit that sought to legalize cannabis under federal law, handing another setback to a movement aimed at effectively making the drug legal everywhere in the United States

The plaintiffs in the case included former NFL player Marvin Washington, along with a 12-year-old girl who uses medical marijuana to treat her chronic epilepsy and others who used the drug for medical reasons. Their lawsuit, which named Attorney General Jeff Sessions as a defendant, argued that the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) is unconstitutional with regard to its classification of marijuana as a Schedule 1 substance, the federal government’s most dangerous classification that is also reserved for drugs such as heroin and LSD. The lawsuit called that classification “irrational” based on the argument that marijuana serves a real medical purpose for countless patients across the country.

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Huddleston, Tom Jr. “Why a Federal Judge Dismissed a Lawsuit That Could Have Legalized Marijuana Nationwide.” fortune.com. 27 February 2018. Web. 6 April 2018.

NJ marijuana legalization: Tube men, black market and other legal weed pitfalls

Weed merchants in Washington state picked up on the popularity of inflatable tube men usually seen waving and flapping around outside of car dealers and mattress stores and occasionally onstage at concerts.

But complaints about the inflatables, green in color and moving erratically in front of marijuana shops, streamed into the regulatory agency set up to control the weed industry.

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Serrano, Ken. “NJ marijuana legalization: Tube men, black market and other legal weed pitfalls.”

The complicated answer to a simple question: Should marijuana be legal where I live?

It has been decades since I held a joint between my fingers. (I’m not even sure that’s what it’s called these days.) But memories from my youth came pouring back to me on Tuesday as I pondered over the question on my ballot.

Voters in Chicago and surrounding areas were asked to weigh in on whether marijuana should be legalized in Illinois. But it didn’t stop with recreational users. The nonbinding referendum also asked us to consider whether people should be allowed to cultivate it, manufacture it and distribute it without retribution.

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Glanton, Dahleen. “The complicated answer to a simple question: Should marijuana be legal where I live?” www.chicagotribune.com. 22 March 2018. Web. 23 March 2018.

Normal’s Fritzen warns against recreational marijuana use

NORMAL – The Normal Town Council’s senior member is entering the fray whether marijuana for recreational use will become legal in Illinois.

Councilman Jeff Fritzen said he’s probably hoping against hope the legislature rejects the idea even though taxes placed on marijuana sales could help state government reduce its massive debt.

Fritzen’s comments follow Bloomington State Senator Jason Barickman’s announcement late last year that he’s willing to support legalized marijuana in return for having a say how the state will use marijuana revenues.

Fritzen said people are kidding themselves if they think the state can keep marijuana out of the hands of people younger than 21, which is four or five years before their brains are fully developed.

“The legalization of marijuana, even though they’re going to propose an age on it, the age is 21. Well, we’re still four or five years away from full development of the brain, and there are impacts of this,” Fritzen said.

“This is a revenue issue for the State of Illinois, and it hadn’t ought to be that we would be willing to risk the development of our youth and our young people, our young adults. Maybe you can somehow miraculously keep it out of the hands of teenagers. I doubt it,” the councilman also said.

Fritzen said it’s a “huge fallacy” to believe that if marijuana becomes legal, dealers will no longer engage in other illegal activities like selling opioids.


Packowitz, Howard. “Normal’s Fritzen warns against recreational marijuana use.” www.wjbc.com. 8 March 2018. Web. 13 March 2018.

What Maine clients get if they pay for delivery: Free pot

But is it legal? Marijuana gifting services like Greenlyght charge a $90-per-quarter-ounce fee to transport their product to Maine users.

Bret Jackson is a marijuana deliveryman, an affable, well-dressed middleman who makes his living in the unregulated gray area of marijuana gifting.

He’s not a cannabis grower, but he knows people who grow legally. He doesn’t have a store, but he has a website where customers can shop for their own cannabis gift. Upon order, Jackson or one of his two full-time drivers will deliver the gift to the recipient, usually within the hour, at a place of the customer’s choosing, like their home, a local park or a coffee shop. The marijuana is free, Jackson insists, but it costs $90 to deliver every quarter-ounce gift.

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Overton, Penelope. “What Maine clients get if they pay for delivery: Free pot.” www.pressherald.com. Web. 5 March 2018.

NJ marijuana legalization: Black lawmakers see nightmare vision of NJ high on legal weed

New Jersey’s black lawmakers, who may decide whether marijuana becomes legal in the state, are hearing a dystopian vision of a society in which babies are exposed to pot smoke, teenagers munch on marijuana-laced foods in school cafeterias, and the leaf replaces tomatoes and blueberries as a symbol of Garden State agriculture.

With 19 members, all of them Democrats, the Legislative Black Caucus is taking on a high-profile role as lawmakers consider whether to make New Jersey the second state to legalize adult use of marijuana through legislation rather than a voter referendum. Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy supports the idea.

Some black lawmakers are pushing back against Murphy’s argument that legal marijuana would reduce disparities in drug-related arrests among white and non-white populations while freeing up police and prosecutors for more serious crimes. Senate President Stephen Sweeney, D-Gloucester, has said he plans to present Murphy with a legalization bill early in the governor’s term.

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Nash, James. “NJ marijuana legalization: Black lawmakers see nightmare vision of NJ high on legal weed.” www.northjersey.com. 26 February 2018. Web. 26 February 2018.

Scientists separate medical benefits of cannabis from ‘unwanted’ side effects

Scientists have found a way to separate medical benefits of cannabis from its unwanted side effects. The research was carried out in mice, but it is hoped that the breakthrough will pave the way for safe cannabis-based therapies that do not cause alterations in mood, perception or memory. Last year the team discovered how the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis, known as THC, reduces tumor growth in cancer patients.

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University of East Anglia. “Scientists separate medical benefits of cannabis from ‘unwanted’ side effects.” www.sciencedaily.com. 9 July 2015. Web. 13 February 2018.

3 Things I Wish Parents – and Teens – Knew About Pot

We live in California, where marijuana is now, as of Jan. 1, legal for recreational use. My four teens report that pot is already very easy to come by and that “everyone” uses it. More concerning to me: Many of my friends – fellow parents – believe that teen marijuana use is not harmful.

 

Nothing could be further from the truth.

 

First, the good news: Most teens don’t smoke pot or ingest edibles. That said, 41 percent of American high school seniors report having used marijuana or synthetic cannabinoids in the past year, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. That’s a very large minority. Do they know what they are doing? Here is what I wish all kids – and their parents – knew about pot:

  1. Marijuana slows brain development in adolescence.
  2. Marijuana today is actually very addictive, especially for teens.
  3. Pot today is a different drug than it was a generation or two ago.

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Carter, Christine. “3 Things I Wish Parents – and Teens – Knew About Pot.” http://www.health.usnews.com. 24 January 2018. Web. 29 January 2018.