Chronicle AM: CO MedMJ Crackdown, Heroin ODs Up, Mexican Soldiers Charged in Massacre, More (10/2/14)

Submitted by Phillip Smith on (Issue #855)

A Colorado legislative panel wants to tighten up on medical marijuana, a South Carolina legislative panel studies medical marijuana, the CDC says heroin overdoses are up, a North Carolina county engages in more drug war same old-same old, and there's news from Mexico, too. Let's get to it:

[image:1 align:right caption:true]Medical Marijuana

Colorado Lawmakers Want to Crack Down on Medical Marijuana. A state legislative panel, the Marijuana Revenues Interim Committee, yesterday recommended filing legislation that would tighten up the medical marijuana caregiver system and clarify that local governments can collect taxes on recreational marijuana. The bill would require all primary caregivers to register with the state. Officials fear that their inability to track caregiver grows under the present system is helping the black market. The bill would limit caregivers to six plants per patient and limit patients to one caregiver. Medical marijuana supporters questioned why a committee charged with revenue issues was concerning itself with medical marijuana laws.

South Carolina Medical Marijuana Panel Meets Today. A joint legislative panel studying the uses of medical marijuana in the state is meeting at the Medical University of South Carolina today. It's the first of three meetings to be held around the state to gather information. The state last year approved a CBD cannabis oil bill; these meetings are designed to help lawmakers gather information and refine the state's marijuana and hemp laws.

Heroin and Prescription Opiates

CDC Report Says Heroin Overdose Death Rate Doubled. A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that the heroin overdose death rate doubled between 2010 and 2012 in the 28 states covered in the report, but that twice as many people died from prescription opiate overdoses. The study says two things appear to be driving the increase in heroin overdoses: widespread exposure to prescription opiates and increasing rates of opiate addiction, and easier availability of heroin. Click on the link for more details.

Law Enforcement

Craven County, NC, Makes Penny-Ante Drug Roundup. After a "two-month investigation," the Craven County Narcotics Unit and the New Bern Police Narcotics Unit (CNET-the Coastal Narcotics Enforcement Team) rounded up 16 drug suspects this week, but the charges are less than impressive. Of the 16 people arrested in the big bust, five were charged only with possession of drug paraphernalia (which was also tacked onto nearly everyone else's charges, too), two were charged solely with failure to appear in court, and one was charged with possession of marijuana in jail. Five were charged with "possession with intent to sell" various drugs and one with "possession with intent to sell" marijuana. One person was charged with possession of meth precursors. Of the 16 arrested, only one was arrested on an actual drug trafficking charge.


Mexican Special Forces Grab Beltran-Leyva Cartel Head. Hector Beltran Leyva, head of the Beltran Leyva cartel since his brother Arturo was killed by Mexican marines in 2009, was captured at a San Miguel de Allende restaurant yesterday. It's another coup against the cartels for the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto, which has also captured Sinaloa cartel head Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman and at least two leaders of the feared Zetas cartel.

Three Mexican Soldiers Charged With Murder in Massacre of 22. Mexican Attorney General Jesus Murillo Karam announced late Tuesday that three soldiers have been charged with homicide in the shooting deaths of 22 people killed in Mexico state on June 30. The military originally said they were cartel members who died in a shoot-out with troops, but witnesses described them being executed after surrendering. Just last week, the Defense Ministry had charged eight of the soldiers with crimes against military justice.

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.


Anonymous510000 (not verified)

     As a person who has had much experience with the LEGAL consumption of LEGALLY prescribed opiates (spanning about 9-10+ years of my life) I have been exposed to all the downsides of addiction and overdose which are always held out to me as the big deal that makes opiates so horrible.  I am not on opiates today, and have had much time away from them over the years, as well. Based on the current hyping of the dangers of opiates, you would think that I would be the poster child for why opiates are so horrible.  Actually, with all their drawbacks, THEY ARE ONE OF THE BEST DRUGS WE HAVE OUT THERE. Without opiates I would probably not be here, as I could not have withstood the rigors of day-to-day horrible pain that would have been my lot without them.  To me, they were absolutely worth the risks and the rest! 

     For e.g., people die all the time riding in cars. Do we decide to outlaw cars because some get hurt by them? PERISH THE THOUGHT! RIGHT? Besides, some people don't want to go on living---esp. people with chronic pain, for e.g.  Opiate overdose makes a graceful exit possible for some who may welcome it. Who makes us the judge of this?  In the meantime, opiates can help one to survive an otherwise intolerable situation. If you accept the risks, what the hell is the big deal?  Really... I can't understand the hysteria over this. It is insane.
     [Oh, I forgot. One can't kill oneself, because that's against religion and law, etc. One can kill people with drone strikes and depleted uranium as a soldier, for e.g.,--i.e., if Poppa Proppagandhi gives the green light---but not oneself. Right... A lot of soldiers have been ignoring that dictum for some reason... If opiates can keep some of them going while they find a way to heal, or to at least want to live, then I say let them! (As long as you send them, say, to a 4-hour class about the possible dangers. Why is this never considered?).  Many people recover and get clean.  Where is THE POLL WHICH ASKS THESE FOLKS IF THEY FELT THE BENEFITS WERE WORTH THE RISK? I say: No more legislation ABOUT US, WITHOUT US. Education. Not Prohibition. Responsibility. Not Pharma-fascist Nanny-state.]
     Consider the benefits of pain relief from opiates as opposed to the (arguably)  MEDICALLY WORTHLESS nicotine and alcohol! WHY ISN'T THE HORN BEING HONKED ABOUT THESE DRUGS?  What about the really high number of deaths associated with ibuprofen, acetaminophen, etc.? WHY DOESN'T THE HORN HONK FOR THESE TWO SUBSTANCES?  The FDA says these are 'reasonably safe'. At the last stats I checked, they were way up there .  AND YOU DON'T REALLY GET A LOT OUT OF THE LATTER IN TERMS OF EFFECTIVENESS FOR PAIN RELIEF, OR I ERR.  For that crappy relief, you STILL RISK DEATH!  Why is this fact always ignored? So, is all I'm saying is, it might be really enlightening to have alcohol, ibuprofen, nicotine and acetaminophen related deaths monitored alongside this constant horn-honking about opiates. Let's learn to educate, allowing people to accept risk the same way they do WHEN THEY GET IN THEIR CARS.
     It is true, however, that chemical extracts from the poppy are more dangerous and addictive than the simple poppy.  WHY DOES ONE HAVE TO BE FORCED TO TAKE SOME CHEMICAL EXTRACT OF A PLANT? This egregious state of affairs does not get dealt with, either. How many folks that take these weird extracts like oxycodone and hydrocodone, etc., have any experience with the PLANT AS GOD MADE IT? Probably not one in a hundred.  THAT'S AN EFFING CAN OF WORMS FOR ANOTHER DAY...
     Thanks StopTheDrugWar for letting me post my thoughts. Keep up the good work in keeping us all informed!

Fri, 10/03/2014 - 8:49pm Permalink

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