Feature: Crack/Powder Cocaine Sentencing Disparity Bill Passes Key House Subcommittee, Heads for Floor Vote
A bill that would eliminate the crack/powder cocaine sentencing disparity by punishing federal crack offenses the same way it punishes powder offenses has passed a key committee vote and is headed for the House floor. Companion legislation is brewing in the Senate.
Feature: Two Marijuana Legalization Initiatives Have Been Filed in California for Next Year's Ballot
It appears increasingly likely that Californians will have a chance to vote on marijuana legalization next year. Two initiatives have been filed, one that would create legalization, one that would create semi-legalization. Is now the right time? Opinion in the movement is divided.
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Hardly a day goes by without another body being found in Mexico's prohibition-related violence, and the Mexican government is under increasing fire as the death toll rises. Now, thanks to upcoming journalist Bernd Debusmann Jr., the Chronicle will be watching and summarizing events on a weekly basis.
A potentially very ugly scandal is brewing in the DC suburbs, a Pennsylvania cop gets busted just after buying some smack, a California prison guard was peddling PCP, and a former Miami-Dade cop cops a plea in an Ecstasy sting.
As a state senator concerned with racial profiling, President Obama championed a bill requiring Illinois law enforcement agencies to report on traffic stops. The latest annual report is out and it's pretty much the same old story: Blacks and Hispanics are much more likely to be asked to consent to searches, but cops are much more likely to actually find contraband if the driver is white.
California's Proposition 36 "treatment not jail" law is likely to lead to neither treatment nor jail as its funding gets slashed by 83% because of the state's budget crisis.
Maine marijuana activist Don Christen is getting ready to do eight months behind bars after the state Supreme Court rejected his appeal in a marijuana cultivation case where he argued he was growing for patients.
With Cook County (greater Chicago) Board President Todd Stroger saying he will not veto last Tuesday's passage of a marijuana decriminalization ordinance, it looks like decrim is a done deal -- at least in unincorporated areas of the county. The move also gives towns and cities in the county the option to adopt decrim as well.
In 2005, voters in Denver approved the legalization of possession of up to an ounce of marijuana, though local authorities have since ignored that vote. Now, voters in the Colorado ski town of Breckenridge will get the same opportunity. A local initiative is headed for this November's ballot -- unless the town council just goes ahead and approves it first.
Latin America: Five Killed, Six Wounded, Six Missing in Attack on Colombian Soldiers, Coca Eradicators
Somebody opened fire on Colombian soldiers and coca eradicators Monday, leaving of a toll of dead, wounded, and missing. There are plenty of suspects.
Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.
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"Want to Prevent Marijuana Growing on Public Land? Legalize It," "More Evidence That Marijuana Prevents Cancer," "Trick Question on the DEA Job Application?," "Cop Accidentally Reveals the Wisdom of Marijuana Legalization," "Drug Czar Gets Caught Lying and Contradicting Himself," "Mexico's Drug War is Eventually Going to Collapse," "Drug Warriors for Sensible Drug Policy," "Should Employers Provide Reimbursement for Medical Marijuana Costs?," "Crack Sentencing Reform Bill Passes Full Judiciary Committee," "More Big News: Needle Exchange Legislation Passes US House of Representatives," "Glorious Kyrgyzstan -- the Best Harm Reduction Program in Central Asia."
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