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STEVE ELLIOTT

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Grape Ape flowered 8 weeks [Photo by Eki Bird]
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Grape Ape
flowered 8 weeks, HPS and LED
[Photo by Eki Bird]

Toke Signals Stories of the Week

DOJ Accepts Decision Saying It Can’t Target State-Legal Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

(Hemp News)

Lynnette Shaw, Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana (MAMM) [Tim Porter/Marin Magazine]
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Lynnette Shaw, Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana (MAMM)
[Tim Porter/Marin Magazine]

The U.S. Department of Justice has abandoned its appeal of a ruling that said federal prosecutors are breaking the law when they go after medical marijuana dispensaries who are in compliance with state law.

U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer issued the ruling last October, when he said that enforcing an injunction against a state-legal dispensary would violate a spending rider prohibiting the Justice Department from spending funds to interfere with state laws allowing medicinal use of cannabis, reports Jacob Sullum at Reason.

Breyer’s ruling is left in force by the ruling in the Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana (MAMM) casea, without establishing a circuit-wide precedent. The DOJ’s request to abandon the appeal probably came about because it feared the 9th Circuit would agree with Breyer’s reading of the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment, which says the DOJ may not used funds to “prevent” states from “implementing” their medical marijuana laws.

The DOJ argued that prosecuting dispensaries, seizing their property, and shutting them down does not prevent implementation of laws which allow them. Judge Breyer rightly ruled that interpretation “defies language and logic.”


Blumenauer Applauds Passage of Senate VA Medical Marijuana Amendment

(Hemp News)

Rep. Earl Blumenauer: "All in all, today’s vote by the Senate Appropriations Committee is very encouraging as we advocate for passage of simple and commonsense measures to reform our marijuana laws" [The Raw Story]
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Rep. Earl Blumenauer:
“All in all, today’s vote by the Senate Appropriations Committee is very encouraging as we advocate for passage of simple and commonsense measures to reform our marijuana laws”
[The Raw Story]

U.S. Representative Earl Blumenauer of Oregon on Thursday applauded the Senate Committee on Appropriations for passing the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Marijuana Amendment for the second consecutive year.

This amendment, offered by Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Steve Daines (R-MT), would allow VA physicians to provide recommendations regarding the participation of a veteran in a state medical marijuana program.

“For the second time, the Senate has taken action to do what’s right for our veterans,” Representative Blumenauer said. “I commend Senators Merkley and Daines for leading this fight in the Senate, and I look forward to pushing it across the finish line in the House.”

“All in all, today’s vote by the Senate Appropriations Committee is very encouraging as we advocate for passage of simple and commonsense measures to reform our marijuana laws,” Congressman Blumenauer said.

 

Prominent Physicians Launch Pro-Marijuana Legalization Group

(Hemp News)

Some of the most prominent physicians in the United States have teamed up to launch the nation’s first organization of doctors formed to advocate for the legalization and regulation of cannabis for adult use.

“Given that decriminalization has proven to be an inadequate alternative to legalization, now is the time for physicians to begin advocating for effective government regulation of cannabis,” Doctors For Cannabis Regulation (DFCR) states on its website.

Until recently, many physicians have been reluctant to publicly voice their opposition to the war on marijuana, lest they appear to condone recreational cannabis use and violate their ethical responsibility to “do no harm,” according to DFCR. But through daily immersion in anecdotal patient experience and scientific evidence, many knowledgeable American physicians recognize:

• Occasional use of cannabis by healthy adults is generally benign, making its prohibition unnecessary.
• Cannabis is far less harmful for adults than alcohol and tobacco, which are both legal because of the impracticality of prohibiting so-called ‘soft’ drugs.
• Cannabis can be harmful to minors, but prohibition doesn’t prevent children and teens from accessing the drug.
• The burden of cannabis prohibition falls disproportionately upon communities of color and the nation’s poor.

 

Massachusetts Marijuana Initiative Backers’ Campaign Highlights Alcohol Hypocrisy

(Hemp News)

Backers of a ballot initiative to end marijuana prohibition in Massachusetts are launching a campaign Friday to highlight the hypocrisy of elected officials who oppose the initiative but promote the use of a more harmful substance — alcohol.

Leaders of the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol held a news conference Friday morning in front of the Massachusetts State House. They showcased a large, provocative sign featuring their first two targets, Gov. Charlie Baker and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, who just announced they have formed a committee to oppose the proposed initiative because they believe marijuana is too dangerous to regulate for adult use.

Baker has proposed legislation to loosen the state’s liquor licensing regulations and expand the number of locations in which alcohol can be served. He also supported repealing the state alcohol tax and opposed a Boston alcohol tax. Walsh proposed legislation to allow bars and restaurants to serve alcohol until 4 a.m., providing an extra two hours of drinking time.

“Our public policies should be based on scientific evidence, and the evidence clearly demonstrates alcohol is more harmful than marijuana,” said CRMLA Campaign Manager Will Luzier, who previously served as executive director of the Massachusetts Interagency Council on Substance Abuse and Prevention. “Marijuana is less toxic, less addictive, and less likely to lead to reckless and violent behavior.

 

Ohio Medical Marijuana Initiative Campaign Team Formed

(Hemp News)

Ohioans for Medical Marijuana on Monday announced it has formed a campaign team to support its initiative to establish a comprehensive medical marijuana program in Ohio.

Brandon Lynaugh, a veteran of more than a dozen statewide ballot issue campaigns, will serve as campaign manager. Lynaugh most recently served as campaign manager for No On 3, which led the effort to defeat the Responsible Ohio initiative last year.

“We’re excited to have Brandon at the helm of our Ohio campaign,” said Rob Kampia, executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), which is supporting Ohioans for Medical Marijuana. “His extensive experience with ballot issues and his history of standing up for Ohioans make him the right person to lead our team. He is committed to establishing a sensible, fair, and compassionate medical marijuana program that will benefit countless seriously ill Ohio residents.”

Lynaugh’s support for establishing legal access to medical marijuana stems from his experience with a close family member who suffers from epilepsy.

 

 

Free Tool Released To Help Consumers Assess High Quality Marijuana

(Hemp News)

All Cannabis isn’t created equal, and just as wine enthusiasts enjoy a user friendly tasting system and diamond buyers employ the “Four C’s.” Good Chemistry Nurseries, one of the industry’s most experienced cannabis producers, has now created a stylish, easy-to-use free consumer cannabis evaluation guide for assessing quality cannabis flower.

Whether novice or aficionado, knowing how to assess cannabis flower quality is key to having the best possible experience. Good Chemistry Nurseries on Thursday announced it has developed a five-step process for identifying high quality, remarkable flower, similar to the multi-step process for evaluating wine.

The S.T.A.T.S. method (Sight, Touch, Aroma, Taste, and Sensation) is a guide to helping consumers evaluate essential aspects of the flower in order to make the most informed and satisfying purchase decisions.

“Just as American consumers have become more knowledgeable about quality wine and craft beer, Good Chemistry Nurseries’ S.T.A.T.S. guide will help consumers quickly and easily assess high quality cannabis,” said Matthew Huron, CEO, Good Chemistry.

 

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