The Week in Weed 9-24-11 — Cannabis News
Unless you are a member of the “choir” (my affectionate name for the hard core cannabis activists who live this movement day in and day out), chances are you’re going to miss a lot of cannabis news. It’s not that there isn’t any, things are happening in the word of marijuana all the time. But the mainstream media never seems to make it a priority to report on it.
So, since I follow these things, and am on every cannabis mailing list imaginable, I thought it might be a good idea to do a weekly round-up of the compelling stories that came across my desk the week before. Sometimes I might discover stories older than a week old but still timely, so I’ll pass them on too. If you have suggestions for stories to be considered for inclusion in next week’s round up, use the Contact Us form here and let me know.
Marijuana Slims? Why Pot Smokers are Less Obese — Time Magazine explores the possible reasons marijuana smokers have obesity rates about 1/3 lower than non-smokers.
POLITICS AND LEGAL
US Marijuana Arrests Near an All-Time High — A shocking report filled with actual statistics from the FBI. According to the report, marijuana arrests now comprise more than half (52 percent) of all drug arrests in the United States. Of those charged with marijuana law violations, 750,591 (88 percent) were arrested for marijuana offenses involving possession only. The remaining 103,247 individuals were charged with “sale/manufacture,” a category that includes virtually all cultivation offenses. By region, the percentage of marijuana arrests was highest in the Midwest (63.5 percent of all drug arrests) and southern regions (57 percent of all drug arrests) of the United States and lowest in the west, where pot prosecutions comprised only 39 percent of total drug arrests. By contrast, the percentage of arrests for heroin and cocaine was lowest in the Midwest (14 percent of all arrests) and highest in the northeast (29 percent of all arrests). Click for the full report to get the hard facts about the law and cannabis in the US.
Rand Study: Marijuana Dispensaries Not linked To Higher Crime Rates — The RAND Corporation on Tuesday issued a report dispelling the myth that there are inherent links between medical marijuana distribution centers and crime, and in fact, crime rose in LA areas near closed dispensaries. This article from the Associated Press summarizes the high points. Click here for a PDF file of the actual Rand Study.
Patient Rights Under Fire in California -- This week in Long Beach, CA, Judge Charles D. Sheldon denied a medical defense to Joe Grumbine and Joe Byron, two legal medical marijuana providers. Grumbine and Byron, who have no prior convictions for anything on their records, followed California State Law, operated as a non-profit collective, paid their taxes, and even did a lot of community outreach including setting up free food banks and clothing drives and helping disabled patients access wheelchairs. Yet Judge Sheldon deemed it appropriate that the pair be presented to a jury as ordinary street drug pushers — no mention of medical marijuana or California’s medical marijuana laws allowed at all! If this ruling stands, no collective or dispensary in California will be safe from prosecution and all will be left defenseless.
ENTERTAINMENT AND LIFESTYLE
World’ Oldest Cookbook Contained Recipe for Cannabis Health Drink! — Everything old is new again. My new cannabis cookbook comes out in January, but way back in 1474 people were cooking with cannabis, as evidenced by this recipe, discovered in the world’s oldest known cookbook.
Cheech and Chong Pitch “Magic Brownies” for General Mills — The aging potheads are pitching a new kind of magic brownie in this hilarious ad from General Mills.
TAKE ACTION OPPORTUNITIES
White House Asks Citizens What Issues Are Important to Them, Cannabis is Winning! — The White House’s “We the People” campaign asked citizens to start and vote on petitions on issue that are important to them and promised to give an official response to any petition that gathered over 5000 signatures. Winning by a landslide is a petition to “Legalize and Regulate Marijuana in a Manner Similar to Alcohol.” This petition sailed past the 5000 signature mark in the first day and is outperforming all other petitions submitted by far (26,647 as of this writing). Please add your signature too. Every other time the Obama administration has been faced with this issue they have either laughed it off or ignored it. Don’t let them ignore it this time.
Help Right the Injustice in Long Beach — Members of The Human Solution are planning rallies, protests, letter writing campaigns and more in response to the egregiously unfair and unlawful ruling by Judge Charles D. Sheldon in Long Beach Superior Court this week, denying two legal medical marijuana providers a medical defense. To take part, donate to Grumbine and Byron’s legal defense fund, or just keep up with what’s happening with the case, visit The Human Solution’s website.