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California Drug De-Felonization Bill Dies

A bill to make simple hard drug possession a misdemeanor instead of a felony was defeated in the California Senate by members who were afraid they could "see Amsterdam" on the horizon. Oh, the horror!

Detroit to Vote on Marijuana Legalization in August

Detroit elected officials' efforts to block city residents from voting to legalize marijuana have been shot down by the state Supreme Court. The issue should be on the primary ballot in August.

California Assembly Passes Medical Marijuana Regulation Bill [FEATURE]

A bill that would bring sorely lacking statewide regulation to California's medical marijuana industry passed the Assembly Thursday and now heads to the Senate.

Connecticut Becomes 17th Medical Marijuana State

Connecticut Gov. Dan Malloy has signed a medical marijuana bill passed by the legislature last month.

Poll Finds California Not Quite There on Marijuana Legalization

A new poll show support for marijuana legalization below 50% in California and suggests some demographic groups that need some attention if it is to receive majority support.

Medical Marijuana Update

It's been a pretty quiet week on the medical marijuana front. Heck, it looks like even the DEA took a break -- no raids to report.

US Senate Passes Synthetic Drug Ban, Without Mandatory Minimums [FEATURE]

The Senate has passed a bill banning new synthetic drugs. It's already passed the House, and the president is expected to sign it into law shortly.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Don't give joints to snitches you're having an affair with -- that's the lesson one California cop learned last week. There are more crooked cops for us this week, too.

Marijuana Legalization Advocate Wins Texas Congressional Primary

A former El Paso city council member who wants to legalize marijuana has knocked off drug warrior Rep. Silvestre Reyes in the Texas Democratic Party primary.

Rhode Island Marijuana Decriminalization Bill Awaits Final Votes

Marijuana decriminalization is just a pair of floor votes away from passage in the Rhode Island General Assembly after companion bills were approved by respective judiciary committees Tuesday.

Indonesia Cuts Schapelle Corby's 20-Year Marijuana Sentence

After seven years in an Indonesian prison over nine pounds of marijuana, there are signs that Schapelle Corby could be free by this fall.

Tennessee Governor Signs Welfare Drug Testing Bill

If you want welfare benefits in Tennessee, you will have to submit to drug screening that could include a drug test under a bill just signed into law.

Did You Know? International Comparison of Felon Voting Laws

ProCon.org is a set of in-depth web sites presenting information and views from on current issues, several with relevance to drug policy. This week the Chronicle concludes our several week series of info items from ProCon.org -- this one from felonvoting.procon.org.

New Biography Says Obama Smoked Pot -- A Lot

Barry Obama and his buddies in the Choom Gang spent their high school and undergraduate years in a haze of pot smoke, a new biography reveals. Drug reformers are chiding him now for his current positions on the issue.

Warrantless Cell Phone Tracking Being Challenged in Courts, Senate [FEATURE]

The police can -- and do -- track your cell phone without a warrant, and they are increasingly resorting to it in the wake of the January Supreme Court decision barring warrantless GPS tracking.

Medical Marijuana Update

An medical marijuana initiative campaign is getting underway in North Dakota, people are going to federal prison in Montana, and the battles continue in California.

This Week in History

Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Philadelphia pays for police misbehavior, more cops get caught pilfering the evidence, one gets caught helping a heroin dealer, and another goes down hard for helping drug traffickers.

Marijuana Legalization Hits 56% Support in Rasmussen Poll

A new Rasmussen poll has national support for marijuana legalization and regulation at 56%, up significantly from a poll just two months ago. It's in line with most other recent national polls.

DEA Facing Fallout from Deadly Honduras Raid

US backing for and involvement in Honduras' war against drug trafficking is under increasing scrutiny after a DEA-involved raid that left four innocent people dead.

DEA Now Ensnared in Colombia Prostitute Scandal

The Secret Service Colombia prostitution scandal has now ensnared at least two DEA agents in Cartagena. An investigation is proceeding.

New Jersey Marijuana Decriminalization Bill Advances

A New Jersey marijuana decriminalization bill has passed its first hurdle, advancing out of the Assembly Judiciary Committee.

Harsh Cameron Douglas Sentence Sparks Appeal, Support

After Cameron Douglas got caught with heroin and Suboxone in federal prison, he got hammered with an additional 4 1/2 years. That harsh sentence has sparked an effort not only to overturn that sentence, but also to highlight the lack of drug treatment for addicted prisoners.

Did You Know? Historical Timeline of Marijuana and Medicine

ProCon.org is a set of in-depth web sites presenting information and views from on current issues, several with relevance to drug policy. The Chronicle is currently running a series of info items from ProCon.org -- this one from medicalmarijuana.procon.org -- and we encourage you to check it out.

Did You Know? Historical Timeline of Marijuana and Medicine

ProCon.org is a set of in-depth web sites presenting information and views from on current issues, several with relevance to drug policy. The Chronicle is currently running a series of info items from ProCon.org -- this one from medicalmarijuana.procon.org -- and we encourage you to check it out.

Why Is Clarence Aaron Still in Federal Prison? [FEATURE]

Is the Office of the Pardon Attorney, which recommends to the president who should win pardons or commutations, doing its job? The case of Clarence Aaron suggests it is not, and advocates are crying foul.

Did You Know? Historical Timeline of Drugs and Sports

ProCon.org is a set of in-depth web sites presenting information and views from on current issues, several with relevance to drug policy. The Chronicle is currently running a series of info items from ProCon.org -- this one from sportsanddrugs.procon.org -- and we encourage you to check it out.

Oklahoma Governor Signs Prison Reform Bill

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) has signed a bill that requires welfare applicants to be screened for drug use and drug tested for "reasonable cause." If they test positive, they lose their benefits.

France's New President to Invest Heavily in Marijuana Arrests

Instead of siding with science and data and common sense, France's new president has instead picked the meanest and stupidest marijuana policy he realistically could have.

Did You Know? Historical Timeline of Drugs and Sports

ProCon.org is a set of in-depth web sites presenting information and views from on current issues, several with relevance to drug policy. The Chronicle is currently running a series of info items from ProCon.org -- this one from sportsanddrugs.procon.org -- and we encourage you to check it out.

LEAP Hiring Speakers Bureau Director (Applications Due Tomorrow!)

Law Enforcement Against Prohibition is an international nonprofit educational organization created to give voice to law-enforcers who believe the US war on drugs has failed. They are hiring a Speakers Bureau Director, most likely based in the Washington, DC area.

Congress Voting on Medical Marijuana THIS WEEK!

For the past 16 years states have called for safe access to medical marijuana. But Congress has failed to act, to the detriment of patients and providers. That could change this week.

Medical Marijuana Update

The national battle over medical marijuana is heating up, Connecticut is about to become the 17th medical marijuana state, and state and local battles continue. And so do the DEA raids. Busy, busy, busy.

House to Vote on Defunding Medical Marijuana Raids [FEATURE]

In a bid to snuff out the federal medical marijuana crackdown, four US congressman have introduced an amendment that would bar the Justice Department from spending money to do so. It awaits a vote any day now.

Charlottesville Says Decriminalize or Regulate Marijuana

The city council in the Virginia college town of Charlottesville had adopted a resolution calling on the state to consider decriminalizing or regulating marijuana, but balked at adding lowest law enforcement priority language.

Dutch "Weed Pass" Plan Hitting Bumps

The Dutch move to bar foreigners from cannabis cafes on the southern border has been met by coffee shop closures in protest, legal action, and police who seem to have better things to do. Meanwhile, the drug tourists are simply driving deeper into the country.

Connecticut Bill to Strengthen Racial Profiling Ban Passes

A bill that will revive and strengthen Connecticut's largely dormant racial profiling law has passed the legislature, and Gov. Malloy says he will sign it into law.

Did You Know? Legal Drinking Age 138 Countries, from ProCon.org

ProCon.org is a set of in-depth web sites presenting information and views from on current issues, several with relevance to drug policy. The Chronicle is currently running a series of info items from ProCon.org -- this one from drinkingage.procon.org -- and we encourage you to check it out.

Did You Know? Legal Drinking Age 138 Countries, from ProCon.org

ProCon.org is a set of in-depth web sites presenting information and views from on current issues, several with relevance to drug policy. The Chronicle is currently running a series of info items from ProCon.org -- this one from drinkingage.procon.org -- and we encourage you to check it out.

Connecticut to Become 17th Medical Marijuana State

Connecticut is about to join the ranks of the medical marijuana states, but in a bid to fend off the feds, its new law is one of the most tightly-drawn yet.

Colorado Per Se Drugged Driving Bill Moving

A bill that would label drivers impaired if they have more than five nanograms of THC per milliliter in their blood even if they are not actually impaired has passed the Colorado Senate and a House committee. Foes are still seeking to kill or amend it.

DEA Forgets Student in Cell, Pols Want Answers

DEA agents arrested a San Diego college student in a drug bust, then forgot about him, leaving him in a holding cell for five days. Now, the California congressional delegation wants answers, and his lawyer wants the DEA to pay big bucks.

Pelosi Condemns Medical Marijuana Crackdown

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has joined the chorus of critics condemning the Obama administration's crackdown on medical marijuana businesses. Will that catch the president's attention?

New Hampshire Marijuana Decriminalization Bill Killed

Faced with a veto threat from Gov. John Lynch (D), the New Hampshire Senate voted Wednesday to kill a marijuana decriminalization bill that had already passed the House.

MSNBC.com Article on DEA "Lost Prisoner"

I'm quoted, fairly extensively, in an article appearing on msnbc.com about Daniel Chong, the student who almost died handcuffed in a detention cell after DEA personnel forgot about him for five


Is the D.A.R.E. Program Good for America's Kids? (K-12), from ProCon.org

Drug War Chronicle is running a series of "Did You Know?" items highlighting items from ProCon.org. This is the second installment.

Nancy Pelosi Condemns Federal Attacks on Medical Marijuana

Yesterday we reported that advocates had presented House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi with a petition asking her to help end the federal crackdown on medical marijuana.


Is the D.A.R.E. Program Good for America's Kids?, from ProCon.org

ProCon.org is a set of in-depth web sites presenting information and views from on current issues, several with relevance to drug policy. The Chronicle is currently running a series of info items from ProCon.org -- this one from dare.procon.org -- and we encourage you to check it out.

Did You Know? 16 States' and DC's Medical Marijuana Laws, from ProCon.org

ProCon.org is a series of in-depth web sites presenting information and views from on current issues, several with relevance to drug policy. The Chronicle is running a series of info items from ProCon.org over the next several weeks -- this first one from medicalmarijuana.procon.org -- and we encourage you to check it out.

Did You Know? 16 States' and DC's Medical Marijuana Laws, from ProCon.org

ProCon.org is a series of in-depth web sites presenting information and views from on current issues, several with relevance to drug policy. The Chronicle is running a series of info items from ProCon.org over the next several weeks -- this first one from medicalmarijuana.procon.org -- and we encourage you to check it out.

Russell Brand Talks Drug Policy in Parliament

Actor and comedian Russell Brand called for "love and compassion" for drug addicts at an appearance before a parliamentary committee in London Tuesday and suggested that decriminalization could be a good approach.

Connecticut Senate Votes to Put Teeth in Racial Profiling Law

"Driving while black" continues to be an issue in Connecticut, and now, the state Senate has voted to beef up the state's 12-year-old racial profiling law, which police departments have been ignoring.

Fight Against Dutch Cannabis Café Restrictions Heats Up

The Dutch government plans to implement its Dutch-only "weed pass" system for cannabis coffee houses on the border on May 1, but it faces growing legal and political challenges. Not to mention, it just lost a vote of confidence.

Leonard Pitts Jr. on Obama, Drug Legalization, and Racial Disparities

Pulitzer-winning author Leonard Pitts, Jr., has a piece in the Miami Herald, "


4/20 Protest at Obama Oaksterdam-area Headquarters

[image:1 align:right]There is a Bay Area 4/20 demonstration against the Obama administration's war on medical marijuana.


Obama Addresses Drug Legalization at Cartagena Summit [FEATURE]

The Cartagena summit saw an historic discussion of drug legalization this weekend, with President Obama conceding that the topic is a legitimate one even as he reiterated US opposition to legalization.

Dismayed But Unbowed -- Take Action Today to Save Medical Marijuana

Department of Justice prosecutors have gone over the top in their raid on Oaksterdam, even attacking places like Oaksterdam University and the Cannabis Museum that don't distribute marijuana. Tell President Obama to rein in rogue US Attorneys and keep his promise to respect state medical marijuana programs.

Book Offer: "The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States"

We continue our newest offer for donating members, the drug policy classic reprint: "The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States." This one is available for donations of just $22 or more.

Medical Marijuana Crackdown Sparks San Francisco Protest [FEATURE]

A San Francisco medical marijuana community already unhappy with federal raids on dispensaries was outraged and energized by Monday's raid on Oaksterdam. Hundreds of protestors went to the federal building to let the US Attorney know it.

Mexico's Former Foreign Minister Castaneda Slams President Calderon Over Drug War in NPR Interview

Jorge Castañeda, the former foreign minister of Mexico, gave a strong interview to NPR's "Tell Me More" program this afternoon. Castañeda, a longtime


Protest in San Francisco TODAY (Tuesday 4/3 11:00am) to Stop Federal Medical Marijuana Raids!

(formatted PDF copy at http://www.canorml.org/SFUnited.pdf)


Feds Raid Oaksterdam University

The feds hit the iconic Oaksterdam University and associated businesses in a Monday morning raid. No word yet on any arrests. Patients are mobilizing. An already scheduled protest set for Tuesday in San Francisco should be even more energized now.

Colombia Bill Would Decriminalize Drug Plant Cultivation

Some Colombian congressman want to decriminalize coca and marijuana production in a bid to drive down prices and encourage farmers to plant other crops.

Rasmussen Poll: 47% Say Legalize, Tax Marijuana

Marijuana legalization continues to gain support in the latest Rasmussen poll.

Washington, DC Selects Medical Marijuana Growers

Medical marijuana patients in the nation's capital could be buying their medicines in dispensaries by this summer after the District government selected growers Friday.

Protestors Challenge NYC Mayor on Mass Marijuana Arrests [FEATURE]

NYPD arrested more than 50,000 people, mostly young people of color, for marijuana possession last year. Thursday, protestors went to the mayor's house to tell him to put a stop to it.

DC Cop Kills Teen in "Drug Activity" Shoot-Out

A 19-year-old Washington, DC, man is dead after running from police investigating "drug activity," then pulling a weapon and firing at them.

Book Offer: "The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States"

We continue our newest offer for donating members, the drug policy classic reprint: "The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States." This is one is available for donations of just $22 or more.

Medical Marijuana Update

More DEA raids in California, more threat letters in Colorado, plus action from the statehouse to the courthouse. Just another week in medical marijuana politics.

New Hampshire Senate Passes Medical Marijuana Bill

The New Hampshire Senate has passed a medical marijuana bill, but not by enough to overcome a threatened veto. The bill still has to pass the House, so there is time to keep working the Senate.

Louisiana Heroin Penalties Not Harsh Enough, Solon Claims

Louisiana state Sen. JP Morrell doesn't like drugs. He's introduced four bills to prove he's serious.

This Week in History

Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.

West Australia Enacts Mandatory Minimums for Marijuana

Western Australia marijuana growers with children better watch out -- the state government has just implemented harsh new laws complete with mandatory minimum sentences if a child is "endangered" by a pot plant or a grow.

Colorado Drug Sentencing Reform Bill Introduced

A bill that would make possession of controlled substances a misdemeanor instead of a felony has been introduced with bipartisan support in Colorado.

Medical Marijuana Bills Advance in New England

Medical marijuana bills won key committee votes in Connecticut and New Hampshire this week.

Michigan Father Killed in Marijuana Child Removal Incident

A Michigan father is dead after Child Protective Services tried to take his young son away after an unfounded allegation of marijuana use. The deputy who shot him has been cleared, but questions and outrage linger.

Supreme Court to Decide Second Florida Drug Dog Case

Is testifying that a drug dog has been trained and certified enough evidence to establish probable cause for a search? The Florida Supreme Court doesn't think so, and now the US Supreme Court will take on the case.

Schoolgirl Sues Pennsylvania District Over Drug Tests

Yet another Pennsylvania school district is being reminded that it can't make students take random, suspicionless drug tests under the state constitution. An 11-year-old girl and the ACLU are suing.

DEA Agent Kills Man in Cartel Murder-for-Hire Sting

A DEA sting in which agents portrayed themselves as members of the Zetas cartel and commissioned a group of men to raid a ranch, kill the owner, and seize 20 kilos of cocaine stolen by a rival cartel has ended with one man dead and three others in custody.

DPA Grants Program LOIs Due April 26th

An annual drug policy reform grants program is accepting letters of inquiry for the next month.

DPA Grants Program LOIs Due April 26th

The Drug Policy Alliance will allocate roughly $750,000 during the 2012/2013 Promoting Policy Change (PPC) grant cycle. PPC seeks to broaden public support for drug policy reform and will fund


Central American Presidents Hold Drug Legalization Summit [FEATURE]

In a historic meeting in Antigua, Guatemala, Saturday, three Central American heads of state attended a regional summit to discuss alternatives to the current drug prohibition regime, which has left their countries wracked by violence.

Book Offer: "The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States"

We continue our newest offer for donating members, the drug policy classic reprint: "The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States." This is one is available for donations of just $22 or more.

UN Anti-Drug Body Supports Overdose Prevention Measures

Delegates to the UN's Commission on Narcotic Drugs have voted unanimously to endorse overdose prevention measures, including the use of the overdose reversal drug naloxone.

Fresno Cops Kill Armed Man Fleeing Meth Bust

A Sanger, California, man is dead after being shot by police as he first pulled a weapons, then tried to flee in an undercover drug bust gone bad.

Federal Court Blocks DEA Effort to Close Florida Pharmacies

The DEA went a step too far when it tried to shut down a pair of Florida CVS pharmacies, a federal appeals court has ruled. The ruling is only temporary, though, so stay tuned.

Book Offer: "The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States"

We continue our newest offer for donating members, the drug policy classic reprint: "The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States." This is one is available for donations of just $22 or more.

This Week in History

Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.

New Hampshire House Passes Marijuana Decriminalization Bill

A marijuana decriminalization has squeaked to victory in the New Hampshire House, but faces a veto threat from Gov. John Lynch (D).

California Medical Marijuana Measure Dropped in Favor of Legislative Campaign

The coalition behind this year's California medical marijuana initiative is shifting gears. It has dropped the initiative effort, and will instead concentrate its efforts -- and its cash -- on passing a measure in the legislature.

Two More Drug Raids, Two More Deaths

Two men have been killed by police in drug raids in Miami Lakes, Florida, and New Orleans. The one in Miami Lakes was armed; the one in New Orleans apparently was not.

Book Offer: "The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States"

We continue our newest offer for donating members, the drug policy classic reprint: "The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States." This is one is available for donations of just $22 or more.

Massachusetts Marijuana Legalization Bill Gets Hearing

Marijuana legalization got a hearing in the Massachusetts legislature Tuesday. While even the bill's sponsor doubts it will pass, it helps pave the way for a legalization initiative in the future.

Medical Marijuana Update

Bills are being considered in some states, busts are going on in others, and local governments grapple with medical marijuana from Washington state to New Jersey.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Bad cops pay out big in New York, a sheriff cleans house in Florida, a sticky-fingered cop gets in trouble in North Carolina, and a California cop gets caught with his fingers in the dope jar.

Oregon Marijuana Legalization Initiatives Moving [FEATURE]

The clock is ticking on marijuana legalization initiatives in Oregon. There are currently four different initiative campaigns underway, but at this point, four months away from when signatures must be handed in, only two look like they have any chance of success this year, and both of them are still tens of thousands of signatures from getting on the November ballot.

Iran Executed Nearly 500 Drug Offenders Last Year

Iran executed nearly 500 people for drug crimes last year, according to a new report from Iran Human Rights, a Norway-based NGO. Drug executions made up more than 70% of all executions in the Islamic Republic.

In Mexico, Biden Rejects Drug Legalization Talk

US Vice President Joe Biden was quick to fight back against the rising clamor for a debate on drug legalization as he landed in Mexico City Monday on a two-day trip to meet with Mexican and Central American leaders.

Florida House Passes State Worker Drug Test Bill

The Florida legislature is one vote away from approving the mandatory, suspicionless drug testing of state employees. The courts may have something to say about that.

Judge Challenges Nevada Medical Marijuana Restrictions

In a ruling Friday, a Nevada district court judge ruled that the state's laws for the distribution of medical marijuana were unconstitutional because they seemed designed to thwart their ostensible purpose. The ruling came in the case of two dispensary operators who had been charged with drug trafficking for taking money to grow marijuana for patients.

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