This Week’s Marijuana News Round-Up:Sessions Leaves Door Open for Marijuana Prosecutions, Congress Should Close it; Two-Thirds of Cops Say marijuana Should be Legalized; WA Bill Introduced to Allow Homegrown Marijuana; DEA Must End Its Informant Program Now; Marijuana Businesses Can Trademark Most Anything Except Marijuana; and more.
Medical/Health Marijuana News
I Made My Son Cannabis Cookies and They Changed His Life — I realize that some people may look askance at parents who keep pot in the house, let alone conduct semi-legal medical experiments on their children. But it’s time we reexamine the cultural and legal restrictions we put on cannabis, especially as it pertains to kids. My son’s life has changed because of it.
Legal/Political Marijuana News
Sessions Leaves Door Open for Marijuana Prosecutions, Congress Should Close it — Rather than leaving this decision solely up to the discretion of the incoming attorney general, members of Congress should take this opportunity to move expeditiously to amend federal law in a manner that comports with public and scientific consensus, as well as with marijuana’s rapidly changing cultural and legal status. Until that day happens, the incoming administration and its Justice Department ought to respect America’s long-established principles of federalism and heed the advice former Supreme Court Justice Brandeis, who famously opined, ‘[A] state may, if its citizens choose, serve as a laboratory; and try novel social and economic experiments without risk to the rest of the country.
Two-Thirds of Cops Say marijuana Should be Legalized — A Pew Research Center survey of nearly 8,000 police officers finds that more than two-thirds of them say that marijuana use should be legal for either personal or medical use. The nationally representative survey of law enforcement, one of the largest of its kind, found that 32 percent of police officers said marijuana should be legal for medical and recreational use, while 37 percent said it should be legal for medical use only. An additional 30 percent said that marijuana should not be legal at all.
DEA Must End Its Informant Program Now — According to a recent audit from the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General, the DEA amassed an army of more than 18,000 informants between October 2010 and October 2015. Informants are offered cash rewards of up to $500,000 or 25 percent of successful cash seizures, whichever is less, and the DEA made $237 million in payments to more than 9,500 sources during this period. The DEA uses these informants to get around pesky privacy protections like the Fourth Amendment and obtain traveler information that private companies would not hand over without a subpoena.
Marijuana News State by State
Pot Bust in CA’s Yolo County Goes Too Far — If ever you needed proof that we live in an age of confusion about marijuana laws, let me share with you the story of Ted Hicks and Ryan Mears, two Sacramento-area entrepreneurs who decided to start a legal medical cannabis business last year and ended up on the business end of assault rifles wielded by officers from a multi-agency, anti-drug task force.
Judge Says NJ Man’s Medical Marijuana Should Be Paid by Worker’s Comp — A south Jersey man injured on the job at a lumber company will have his medical marijuana tab paid by his employer’s workers compensation insurance, according to a state administrative law judge ruling in what appears to be the first decision of its kind in the state.
WA Bill Introduced to Allow Homegrown Marijuana — A bill has been introduced in the state Legislature that would allow marijuana users to grow their own supply at home. Washington is the only state that allows for retail, recreational marijuana but doesn’t also permit cannabis to be grown at home unless by registered medical patients. The new legislation, HB 1092, introduced Wednesday by state Rep. Sherry Appleton, D-Poulsbo, would change that. If enacted, all adults (21 and over) would be able to grow up to six plants on their private premises so long as the yield is no greater than 24 ounces. Homes with more than one adult would be permitted 12 plants for up to 48 ounces of usable marijuana.
Marijuana Business News
Marijuana Businesses Can Trademark Most Anything Except Marijuana — Hi is a cannabis brand. Its logo — “hi” in white letters inside an orange circle — can be found above the front door of a Portland, Ore., marijuana shop and on a handful of cannabis products, including massage oil and Hi Releaf pain-relief balm. But you wouldn’t guess any of that from Hi’s trademark filings. In 2015, the brand’s parent company, Cannabis Sativa Inc., filed a trademark application — not for any of Hi’s core products, but for hats, T-shirts and a wide array of other apparel. This is the odd state of affairs for trademark protection in the cannabis industry, one of the many byproducts of the gap between state and federal marijuana laws.