Chronicle AM: LA Times Endorses Prop 64, Urgent Action Time on Kratom, More... (9/19/16)

Donations are starting to flow for and against reform initiatives, California's largest newspaper endorses marijuana legalization, so do Italian cops, a new study suggests medical marijuana may reduce opioid-related auto fatalities, it's time to act to keep kratom off Schedule I, and more.

Marijuana Policy

Dr. Bronner's Kicks In $660,000 for Legalization Initiatives. The magic soap and organic products maker -- and longtime drug reform supporter -- Dr. Bronner's had pledged to contribute at least $660,000 to the initiatives in Arizona, California, Maine, Massachusetts, and Nevada. "The expected sweep of these states will exert enormous pressure on federal lawmakers to end the racist outdated policy of cannabis prohibition, that shreds productive citizens' lives and families for no good reason, and focus law enforcement resources instead on actual crime," officials for Dr. Bronner's said in an announcement released Monday.

Los Angeles Times Endorses Prop 64. California's largest newspaper has hopped on board the legalization bandwagon with an editorial endorsing the Prop 64 initiative. Saying that "the federal government has effectively ceded its role and left it to the states to create a new national marijuana policy," the Times editorial board asks if it is time "to treat marijuana less like heroin and more like alcohol" and answers its own question in the affirmative. "On balance, the proposition deserves a 'yes' vote. It is ultimately better for public health, for law and order and for society if marijuana is a legal, regulated and controlled product for adults. Proposition 64 -- while not perfect -- offers a logical, pragmatic approach to legalization that also would give lawmakers and regulators the flexibility to change the law to address the inevitable unintended consequences."

Massachusetts Legalization Supporters Celebrate With Big Freedom Rally Turnout. Thousands of people turned out for the annual Boston Freedom Rally this weekend, jazzed by the prospect of being able to vote "yes" on the Question 4 legalization initiative in November.

Mississippi Legalization Initiative Campaign Gearing Up. A measure known as Initiative 60, which would legalize marijuana for people 21 and over, has been approved for signature gathering in Mississippi. To make it to the 2018 ballot, organizers will need roughly 86,000 valid voter signatures, with at least 17,000 from each of the state's five congressional districts. They have one year for signature-gathering.

Medical Marijuana

Study of Fatal Car Crashes Suggests Medical Marijuana May Curb Opioid Use. A study conducted at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health has found that fewer drivers killed in car crashes tested positive for opioids in medical marijuana states than before those laws went into effect. The findings will be published online in the American Journal of Public Health.

Florida Medical Marijuana Foes Get a Million Dollars From Sheldon Adelson.Las Vegas casino magnate and conservative philanthropist Sheldon Adelson is again attempting to sway Florida voters away from approving medical marijuana. In 2012, Adelson spent $5.5 million to help defeat the initiative; this year, he has recently kicked in another one million.

Nine out of Ten Montana Medical Marijuana Patients Have No Legal Provider. With the GOP-led legislature's 2011 gutting of the state's medical marijuana program now in effect, 93% of the state's more than 12,000 registered patients have no registered provider. That means unless they can grow it themselves, they are out of luck. An initiative that would restore the state's medical marijuana program, I-182, is on the November ballot.

Kratom

It's Urgent Action Time to Fight DEA's Proposed Kratom Ban. The American Kratom Association is asking supporters to urge their congressional representatives to sign onto a bipartisan "Dear Colleague" letter asking the DEA to slow down the process of placing the herb on Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. The group is urging supporters to call or email their reps BEFORE 5:00 PM ET TUESDAY.

Sentencing Reform

Federal Sentencing Reform Dead for the Year. Efforts to further reform federal drug sentencing in this congressional session are dead, congressional leaders said late last week. While the consensus legislation appeared set to pass earlier this year, opposition from some Republican lawmakers has killed it. Some Republicans opposed cuts in mandatory minimums, others were angry at President Obama for freeing so many federal drug prisoners, and the "law and order" campaign of Donald Trump seems to have been the final nail in the coffin.

International

Italy's Largest Police Union Calls for Marijuana Legalization. The SIULP, Italy's primary police union, has now come out in support of legalization. A bill to do just that is currently before the Italian parliament, with growing support.

Governor of Mexico's Guerrero State Again Calls for Legalization of Opium Production. Guerrero Gov. Hector Astudillo has again called for the legalization of poppy production for medicinal purposes. "We must look for other paths that bring about less tension, less conflict, and less violence," he said as he reiterated a call first made in March. Guerrero is one of the centers of opium production in Mexico, and production is increasing as local farmers switch from coffee to poppy due to low coffee prices.

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Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

Do it, Italy

It's much safer than alcohol, and the laws against weed are unenforceable and spew 'collateral' damage everywhere you look, including the overlooked connection to income inequality. 

Please Help Stop Kratom Ban

Please help us stop the Kratom ban and the DEA's obvious overreach in it's decision to place Kratom in the Schedule I category under emergency scheduling. Kratom or Mitragyna Speciosa is an herb used for centuries in Southeast Asia and is the cousin of the coffee plant. Many people find relief from chronic and often painful conditions because of Kratom, including people like me who suffer from anxiety, depression, chronic fatigue and insomnia, chronic pain due to 15 surgeries on chest & abdomen, arthritis, bursitis, tendonitis, nerve damage and nerve pain, and the effects of early menopause, due to a full hysterectomy that was necessary to get rid of cervical cancer - not to mention the bouts of opioid dependency in between with all the necessary pain management. Kratom, a literal tea leaf, has given me my life back. I am able to do things that most people without these chronic conditions take for granted, but not me, because it has been a battle to get here. I can be a productive member of society and work again, pick up my young son, play outside with my older boys, and go grocery shopping without suffering the consequences. I don't want this right to be taken away from me. Please call your local and urge them to support the Kratom Community by signing onto the Pocan/Salmon Dear Colleague Letter asking Congress to intervene on our behalf with the DEA and their emergency scheduling of kratom. This is basically Reefer Madness and Cannabis prohibition all over again, folks, and the stress of the situation is quite frankly making many people sick. The stress itself can heighten our symptoms, especially of pain, depression, and anxiety. Please don't let the government take away another plant and natural alternative that is benefiting thousands, if not millions, of people in America. Thank you for supporting the Kratom Community in a time when we need it most, StopTheDrugWar.com :) 

*Afternote - The deadline for your Reps to sign onto the Dear Colleague letter has been extended to end of tomorrow, Friday, I believe, and then Monday will be when the final copy will be circulated throughout Congress asking them to intervene and stop the DEA from banning Kratom. 

Thanks <3

Stop the war on people.

Profits over people. It's sickening.

DEA FDA Big Pharma

The DEA and FDA are the lapdogs of big Pharma. Do a Google search and find the connection. The trampling of rights by the DEA is unacceptable. This isn't about keeping people safe. This is about filling the big pharmas pockets. Big Pharma created the perfect storm. Lobby the FDA into allowing the over prescribing of narcotics. In the case of oxycontin allowing falsified information stating it lasted 12 hours and that it was non addicting. Both lies. So now you have all these addicts but hey we are big Pharma we have suboxon! IT'S THE CURE FOR OPIATE ADDICTION. More lies. So now you have another addicting substance in the mix. People get fed up and search for a cheaper natural way to take care of pain and even better it can help addicts get off of street drugs and rx opiates. Big Pharma can't make money off a plant. So they get their friends from the FDA to start blocking imports but that wasn't enough in comes the DEA to schedule Kratom to schedule one so they will be no studies on how it can fix the opiate epidemic. This is sickening. How many more people must die from big pharmas poison? How many more must be made into criminals before we wake up and tell the DEA you are not wanted or needed. How many more people will it take the DEA to murder. Wake up America. The drug war is a failure.

Kratom

Now is the time that we need everyone to contact a representative and ask them to sign onto the Pocan/Salmondear colleague letter. It's very simple process and it will help this fight so much. Let's stop wasting our money on this war and start putting our money where our mouth is and actually trying to help people with this plant. Instead of banning it. There's so many wonderful uses for this plan but we can't use any of them if it's going to be banned.

Kratom helped me break my

Kratom helped me break my addiction to opioid medications that were causing me numerous health problems. I suffer from endometriosis and a genetic disorder called Ehlers Danlos Syndrome hypermobility type. The combo of these two conditions causes me debilitating pain and fatigue that normally leaves me bound to my bed most of the day. Three years ago I had to leave my job because the pain became so severe. I had a good job and my family lost half of our income. My doctors tried many medications on me and I ended up on a combination that caused my health to spiral out of control. At first it was so helpful and I was excited to be functioning again but over time I became ill, unable to eat, my pain became more severe and I started spending most of my time in bed again from fatigue. After hearing about Kratom and researching it, I decided to see if it really could help me get off my medications. It worked. I'm 100% drug free and my pain has gone down so much, my hair stopped falling out, I'm able to eat again, I've gained some weight back and my body is recovering. An added benefit I found is that kratom helps me immensely with pain control, anxiety relief and energy. My pain leaves me completely wiped out but Kratom helps me function like a normal person. I was excitedly planning my life again after finding kratom. I thought I'd even be able to work again, something that seemed impossible before, but that isn't going to happen without kratom. I cannot go back on opioids due to the side effects and health consequences. I was afraid I was going to die from them as so navy others have. I can use kratom as needed without any side effects. It doesn't give me any kind of high, the only euphoria I feel from using kratom is happiness from being able to get out of bed, from being able to function and play with my daughter, clean my house and cook for my family. It's the joy I get from having the ability to do all of the little things in life that healthy people take for granted.

stop the kratom ban

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