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Medical Marijuana Update

Submitted by Phillip Smith on (Issue #751)

Last issue, we reported that the DEA had taken the week off. Well, they're back, and so is the push-back. Let's get to it:


Last Thursday, the Women's CannaBusiness Network held a press conference in Washington, DC, to call on President Obama to cease enforcement actions against medical cannabis providers while the administration reviews its policies to determine whether they are in the public interest. The group is a project of the National Cannabis Industry Association.

On Monday, Americans for Safe Access called for Thursday demonstrations at Obama campaign headquarters across the country "in an effort to draw attention to the Obama Administration's aggressive efforts to shut down legal medical marijuana dispensaries and obstruct the passage of laws that would regulate such activity." Demos are set for Washington, DC, as well as in the states of Arizona, California, Colorado, Montana, Missouri, New Mexico, Oregon, and Washington.


Last Wednesday, the DEA raided Green Heart Collective facilities in Anderson and Redding. "They broke all the windows, vandalized the inside of the building and took all of the medicine," owner Gina Munday said. "We were so surprised." No arrests have been made so far.

Also last Wednesday, the Encinitas city council approved a dispensary initiative for the 2014 ballot. Initiative backers the Patient Care Association had signatures verified by the registrar of voters on August 8, two days before the state deadline for the 2012 ballot, but the council would have had to have called a special meeting to place it on the ballot. It failed to do so.

Last Thursday, Harborside Health Center asked a federal judge to stop its landlord from trying to shut it down. Harborside and its landlords have been hit with threat letters from federal prosecutors, and its San Jose landlord had moved to force it out. But Harborside is fighting everything to do with the federal threats.

Last Friday, Vallejo police raided Nature's Love Collective for the second time. They arrested the operator, just as they did four months ago, the last time they raided it. Vallejo police have raided  nine dispensaries this year despite the city voting to tax and regulate them.

On Monday, an initiative to overturn the LA dispensary ban qualified for the ballot.  City Clerk June Lagmay said activists needed 27,425 valid signatures for their measure to qualify and that a statistical sampling of the signatures showed they had turned in 110% of the amount needed. The city council can now repeal its "gentle ban" ordinance, call a special election, or put the measure on the March 5 city election ballot. In the meantime, the ban is on hold, although LAPD has said it intends to continue busting dispensaries.


On Tuesday, the DEA raided the High Hopes Farm grow operation outside Jacksonville. James Bowman, a longtime activist, owns the farm and went public about his activities last spring with a spread in the Oregonian newspaper. Bowman could be the single largest medical marijuana producer in the state. He wasn't arrested, but agents plowed under his crop.


As of Sunday, the Vermont Department of Safety has granted conditional approval to two dispensary applicants. One applicant, the Champlain Valley Dispensary, has been approved for Burlington and hopes to be open and serving patients within six months. A second applicant, Patients First Inc., has been approved for Waterbury. The department received five applications this year, but three of them did not meet minimum standards. Under a 2011 law, the state can have four dispensaries and will accept more applications next year if that number isn't reached this year.

Permission to Reprint: This content is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Content of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.


Uncle Bob (not verified)

These Draconian attacks against medical marijuana distributors and growers is fueled by private interests that make their livelihood off prohibition.  And the politicians in Washington are in their pockets.  Or rather, they are in the politicians' wallets.


This is why you won't see reform any time soon.  The will of the people is second to accommodating these private interest groups that line the politicians' wallets.  It doesn't matter that lives are getting destroyed, and families are getting torn apart.  We're just ants.

Thu, 09/20/2012 - 12:39am Permalink
David762 (not verified)

Obama's only successful jobs program was, is, and forever more will only be the combined war on drugs / war on terror. Anyone who claims that the war on drugs / Prohibition has been a disaster have only been looking at the bogus "official" narrative. Arrests are up, asset forfeitures are up, private prison populations are up, law enforcement expenditures are up. Banksters launder hundreds of $Billions in drug cartel receipts per year, without fear of prosecution. Campaign coffers get filled by the beneficiaries of Prohibition.

From the Boxer Rebellions to Air America to Iran-Contra to our occupation of Afghanistan, the war on drugs has always been a matter of controlling the sources, distribution, and profits but never a matter of curtailing illicit drug use.Illicit drugs are more widely available than ever before, with quality up and prices down. At the time that the Harrison Act was passed up to today, that portion of the American population addicted to illicit drugs has remained at 4%. Cannabis Prohibition against an innocent, harmless and much maligned plant has always been about repression of the population.

Our corrupt Congress and Executive Branches could never have arrived at our current Police State without the war on drugs as justification. Let's be honest. When looked at from the tyrannical authoritarian fascist perspective, the war on drugs has been an outstanding success.

Thu, 09/20/2012 - 2:20pm Permalink
Jordan barnett (not verified)

It's the only thing that helps me how do I go about gritting a marijuana card I would have to take 10 differnt pills a day but with marijuana not one pill is needed but yet it's easer to get pills then marijuana
Sun, 04/21/2013 - 10:13am Permalink

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