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Medical Marijuana: Oregon Medical Marijuana Foe Drops Initiative Effort

Kevin Mannix, a conservative Oregon political operative who has made a career out of pushing "tough on crime" ballot measures, announced this week that he and his colleagues are giving up on an initiative designed to gut the Oregon Medical Marijuana Act (OMMA) and kill the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program. More than 16,000 Oregon residents are currently registered with that program.

On Monday, the Willamette Week reported that Mannix said the effort was dead. "That petition is going to stop this week," Mannix said, adding that there was not enough time or money to gather the 82,000 signatures needed.

The attack on OMMA was part of Mannix's proposed Oregon Crime Fighting Act, which would have given repeat "major felony" sex offenders a 25-year minimum sentence, made third-offense DUI a felony, and replaced OMMA with a program that would instead supply Marinol pills, the synthetic THC substitute generally scorned by medical marijuana patients.

"That's the best news I've had all day," Paul Stanford, head of The Hemp and Cannabis Foundation, a Portland-based national chain of medical marijuana clinics, told the Week. "We don't have to waste our resources encouraging people not to sign that petition," Stanford says. "We don't have to mount a campaign against them in the fall. It just saves us a lot of time and effort."

But Mannix may be back. He told the Week that the initiative had the financial backing of Save Our Society From Drugs, the rabid, Florida-based prohibitionist group headed by Calvina Fay, and that the group could sponsor another effort to kill OMMA in 2010.

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Leave well enough alone

Once again, common sense prevails for the people in the pacific northwest. Don't fix it if it aint broke. For 16,000 sick and hurt, this is huge. Good move Mr. Mannix. Leave it that way. Leave well enough alone and get on with more important issues. Stop being a fly on a wall with the OMMP and recognize it for being for the people and by the people. E'nuff said.

Leave well enough alone

Unfortunately Kevin Mannix has not made a career of leaving well enough alone. He is always trying to fix what is not broken by pushing his agenda of mandatory imprisonment for people who commit crimes. His definition of crimes. Most of which are not crimes at all or would be better served by better education and proper rehabilitation of the person. Locking them up does nothing but help them become criminals in fact. As they said at the end of the article He is only stopping for now, he plans on trying again in 2010. The really bad thing is that he is also running for a federal office here in Oregon. He is running as a Republican against Mike Erickson for the 5th district. Hopefully no one will vote for him or if he makes it into the general election in November he will be defeated by one of the Libertarians or even a Democrat. The last thing Oregon needs is someone like him setting policy in Washington D.C.

Great News!

This is great news for Oregon! As noted in this story Florida needs your support to make progress with drug policy reform. Anyone that would deny a person medicine deserves to suffer themselves and be denied. FL has the toughest drug laws in the nation.There is a national group organizing in FL to stop drug prohibition and replace it with sensible drug policy. Will you join them? Here’s a link to their website:
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The SOS literature is amusing. It reads," the efforts of drug dealers to legalize drugs". Thats the last thing dealers want. It also tells of money trails for legalizers, but no mention of where the prohib money comes from. No mention of Calvinas mentors, the evil Semblers.

Mannix and the OMMP

Has anyone reminded Mr. Mannix and others that have similar agendas lately that the OMMP was voted into existence by the majority of citizens in Oregon? Medical marijuana patients are not the ones contributing to or escalating the government's pot problem. If they were, statistics in states that have approved marijuana for medical use would indicate so, and you can be assured that the public would be made well aware of them, as politicians like Mr. Mannix ensure that no opportunities to support their flawed position are overlooked. In states that have implemented similar programs, there has been NO evidence of increased marijuana use. On the contrary, if a little common sense were to be utilized, these politicians would realize that for every medical marijuana patient that is authorized by the state to supply their own medicine, that is one more person NOT out supporting the black market. On the flip side, for every medical marijuana dispensary that is raided and shut down (as is the case in CA), and every patient that is denied access to medical marijuana (if programs similar to the OMMP are shut down), these patients have no choice BUT to return to supporting the black market. Mr. Mannix may get 82,000 signatures alright, but how many of those would be black market dealers who would love to see a flood of 16,000 plus Oregon medical marijuana patients forced back to the underground supply chain? Patients can currently self-provide their medicine for what I would estimate to be approximately $100 - $200 a month, factoring all expenses, totally bypassing the black market, actually REDUCING the criminal activity normally associated with obtaining marijuana. Mr. Mannix's solution? Provide all the patients with pharmaceutical, synthetically produced THC, as Marinol, at a cost of what I would estimate being between $500 - $2500 a month. Kind of makes one wonder who Mr. Mannix is representing, does it not? Is Mr. Mannix also prepared to legislate a tax credit to help patients offset this increased cost, or perhaps he will persuade the state to pay for it? Marinol is not near as effective as inhaled marijuana, but thank you Mr. Mannix, for at least acknowledging that THC has medical value and legitimate medical application. That's already more than the federal government is willing to concede to officially. More and more people are realizing that far greater harm to society and individuals is caused by the proven failed current drug control policies than could ever be caused by the use of marijuana itself. But don't take my word for that. Take a quick look at the website maintained by L.E.A.P. (Law Enforcement Against Prohibition) for one example. It's members include current and former members of the law enforcement community, such as police officers, prosecutors, and judges, all of whom have witnessed firsthand the destruction that the current government drug control policies have saddled society with. Incidentally, L.E.A.P. also welcomes membership from individuals who are not affiliated with the law enforcement community. Membership is free, and this U.S. based organization is working tirelessly toward responsible drug law reform, worldwide, with a very viable agenda of harm reduction. Along with many other hard working similar organizations, such as StopThe, the hosters of this post. Mr. Mannix, if you truly wanted to take a bite out of crime, you would join and support the rapidly growing movement to undertake a responsible reform of drug laws, especially those regarding (medical) marijuana. Seventy plus years of prohibition, propaganda, and hauling citizens before the courts for possessing or using a little marijuana is about enough, wouldn't you think? The very fact that this issue still needs to be addressed after 7 decades is absolute proof that oppressive policies DO NOT WORK. So, increasing penalties or making it more difficult for patients to obtain their medicine is going to improve things how? Also, you could check out the stats, for example, in societies like the Netherlands, where marijuana currently enjoys a status similar to decriminalization. Use of marijuana there is considerably lower overall than in the U.S., especially among young adults, due in part to the fact that marijuana isn't subjected daily to a constant state of negative attention directed toward it. And keeping marijuana and other drugs out of the hands of young adults is what's really important. There is no reason that this wouldn't eventually also be the case in the U.S. with law reform. THAT would be the quickest way to look after the pot problem. Please, take the blinders off, and honestly review the evidence. I'm sure there are segments of society that could be targeted or discriminated against other than those who are among the most vulnerable, who are actually doing nothing but trying to manage medical symptoms in a cost efficient and proven (over and over and over...) effective manner. One politician does not a majority make. If this "crush, kill, and destroy" mentality regarding the OMMP continues, conservatives might just see this same majority of voters in Oregon that approved the medical marijuana bill cast their next votes for a more liberal candidate. Landslides can and do occur in politics from time to time. At least most Democrats exhibit some compassion for suffering patients. Although it really is sad that measures like this need to be considered to get a message across and shut down misguided politicians that refuse to let the will of the people stand. An open and honest dialogue between politicians and their constituents would be a far wiser course. Whatever happened to "for the people"? Politicians are starting to stray dangerously from this concept, and the existence of our privileges and rights are at a corresponding risk to simply disappear. We can't let that happen. I don't have a problem with the "tough on crime" approach that Mr. Mannix holds, but for crying out loud, let's at least make sure that government resources and policies are targeting "real" crime and criminals. Medical marijuana patients should be the least of Mr. Mannix's or the federal government's worries. As I heard one physician say, there is a lot worse than marijuana out there. It would make sense and be more beneficial to focus on the "lot worse".

Calvina Fay

Who will save "society" from dried up old Fascists like Calvina Fay?


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