Dec 192014
 December 19, 2014
Police Officer Caught With Four Pounds Of Marijuana Won't Be Charged

Imagine that you are caught with four pounds of marijuana in your home by law enforcement. Barring some miracle, you would be arrested, charged, and likely go to jail for quite awhile and pay some hefty fines. That’s what would happen to the average marijuana consumer. There is one thing that could potentially stop that from happening – you are a cop. A cop was dispatched to a UPS store to investigate a suspicious package that contained over four pounds of marijuana. Normal law enforcement protocol involves filling out a report and taking the marijuana to the station to be

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Dec 192014
 December 19, 2014
Racial Bias In The Enforcement Of Marijuana Laws

Marijuana prohibition is a racist public policy. That’s clear to anyone that looks at the math. The percentage of African Americans that consume marijuana is roughly the same as the percentage of white people that consume marijuana. However, African Americans are almost four times as likely to be arrested for it on average in America, and there are parts of America where that discrepancy in enforcement is even greater. Attorney Justin Meehan and reporter and drug war casualty LeShea Agnew discuss racism in the War on Drugs in the video below. Show-Me Cannabis board chair Dan Viets moderates.

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Dec 182014
 December 18, 2014
Nebraska And Oklahoma Sue Colorado Over Marijuana Legalization

Today, Nebraska and Oklahoma sued the state of Colorado over its marijuana legalization law, saying the law has created an increased law enforcement burden in neighboring states. The suit, filed by Nebraska Attorney General John Bruning and Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, claims federal marijuana prohibition preempts Colorado’s law. Colorado voters decisively adopted Amendment 64 in 2012. Statement from Tamar Todd, Director, Marijuana Law and Policy, Drug Policy Alliance: “This is a misguided effort to undo cautious and effective state-level regulation of marijuana and to undermine the will of the voters and legislators who enacted it.  Today’s action isn’t just

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Dec 182014
 December 18, 2014
Anchorage Assembly Votes Against Ordinance To Ban Marijuana Sales

Alaska voters approved a marijuana legalization initiative last month during the 2014 Election. Alaska joined Colorado, Washington, Oregon, and Washington D.C. in approving a marijuana legalization initiative. Marijuana opponents in Alaska started almost immediately to prevent marijuana sales from occurring in Alaska’s largest city, Anchorage. Fortunately, those efforts were for not, as the Anchorage Assembly voted down an ordinance that would have banned marijuana sales within city limits. Per KTVA: Tuesday’s Assembly meeting brought public testimony from both sides of the issue. After hearing more than 50 people share their sides, the Assembly brought the ordinance to a vote. In the

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Dec 182014
 December 18, 2014
House Joint Resolution To Legalize Marijuana Filed In Missouri

By John Payne Although the Missouri General Assembly does not return to session until January 7, legislators have begun pre-filing legislation for consideration in the New Year. On December 5, Representative Brandon Ellington (D – Kansas City) filed House Joint Resolution 15, which would allow the voters of Missouri to decide whether to legalize cannabis for all adults over the age of 21. Ellington introduced a similar proposal last session. During the legislative panel at our fall conference, Rep. Ellington discussed how it was the only piece of legislation he introduced that did not receive a hearing. However, he expressed

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Dec 182014
 December 18, 2014
Obama Commutes Sentences For Eight Drug Offenders

By Phillip Smith President Barack Obama today commuted the prison sentences of eight drug offenders and issued pardons for 12 other people who had already finished their sentences. The commutations were for people imprisoned for crack cocaine and methamphetamine offenses. No one is walking out of prison today, but all eight had their sentences reduced to lengths that will allow them to walk out at some point in the next year. Among those who got commutations is Sidney Earl Johnson of Mobile, Alabama, who has been serving a life sentence for crack cocaine offenses since 1994. Another is Larry Naylor

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Dec 172014
 December 17, 2014
New York State Holds Public Forum On Taxing And Regulating Marijuana Like Alcohol

Today, Senator Liz Krueger and Assemblyperson Crystal Peoples-Stokes sponsored a public forum about the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act, a bill that would tax and regulate marijuana in a manner similar to alcohol. Under the proposal, those over 21 would be able to purchase small amounts of marijuana from a state-regulated store. The bill would rectify the many problems associated with marijuana prohibition, including the arrests of tens of thousands of primarily young people of color. “There is no question that New York’s marijuana policies are broken,” said Kassandra Frederique, Policy Manager at the Drug Policy Alliance.  “Each year, tens

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Dec 172014
 December 17, 2014
Travel Guru And Marijuana Activist Rick Steves Heads To California

Many people know Rick Steves from his travel books, TV show or radio program. He is a self-made business man who has a serious following among folks interested in travel. Recently, Steves has become one of the more prominent marijuana law reform advocates in the country. I will always be grateful for his 10-city tour across Oregon has he urged Oregonians to vote yes on Measure 91 and legalize marijuana for all adults. Steves ventured to Oregon on his own dime, as he didn’t expect any payment from the campaign. He earned great media for marijuana legalization as he spoke

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Dec 172014
 December 17, 2014
Teen Marijuana Use Declines As More States Legalize Marijuana

The federal government’s National Institute on Drug Abuse released its annual Monitoring the Future survey today. Monitoring the Future is now in its 40th year and is considered the ‘gold standard’ of teen drug use surveys. It surveys 40,000 to 50,000 students in 8th, 10th and 12th grade in schools nationwide about their use of alcohol, legal and illegal drugs and cigarettes. Marijuana use in the past year by students in all three grades declined slightly, from 26% in 2013 to 24% in 2014. The survey also found that students in 8th and 10th grades reported that marijuana is less

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Dec 172014
 December 17, 2014
Harrison Narcotics Act Still Fostering Violence, Addiction 100 Years Later

Concerned citizens and a coalition of organizations including representatives from Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) will gather in cities nationwide on Wednesday, December 17th at noon on the steps of courthouses and other civic buildings. These demonstrations are in response to the 100-year anniversary of the Harrison Narcotics Act of 1914 and call for responsible drug policy reforms that put doctors back in charge of helping people overcome substance addiction. The Harrison Narcotics Act is considered one of the first American prohibitionist policies. While on its face the law merely regulated opiate and cocaine products in medical settings by licensing

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