Global: #420 Commiserating The Chaos of Cannabis

AALM is counting down to 420 with a daily update on the man-made disaster that is pot.

Each April 20th pot heads celebrate “their” special holiday. It harkens back to high school students in San Rafael California who designated 4:20 pm as the time they would gather to smoke weed. Today 420 designates anything marijuana and remains as juvenile as its beginnings. 

“Legalization” is worse than a Failure

  • Now that the drug is “above ground” the influence of drug dealers has been expanded and institutionalized
    • Major marketing and ad campaigns are commonplace.
    • Unscrupulous investors see the pot industry as another potential .com boom.
    • Pot lobbyists and lawyers are ubiquitous in DC and every city where pot is welcomed.
    • Candidates and elected officials receive millions in donations to do the bidding of the pot industry.
    • Big corporations are taking over the marijuana market.

Robert Cory, considered the founding father of pot legalization in Colorado, says it this way, “I wish I could be proud of what we created, but I’m not. The outcome of 64 is shameful, hurts people, and Colorado is not “safer.”

For more 10-DAY COUNTDOWN TO 420

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USA: Another Pernicious Pot Push in New York

NEW YORK LEGALIZED MARIJUANA IN THE MOST DANGEROUS OF WAYS

The late great state of New York

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the most dangerous of marijuana legalization models possible last week.  Meanwhile, Governor Ralph Northam of Virginia signaled his support to push up marijuana legalization to July 1.  Both governors allow themselves to be pushed around and manipulated by activist groups like the Drug Policy Alliance, NORML, and the ACLU.

The next day, a memo went out to New York City police.  The NYPD memo told cops that smoking marijuana in places such as sidewalks, on front stops, and other public places “is not a basis for an approach, stop, summons, arrest or, search.”

A new study shows that secondhand marijuana smoke is more dangerous than tobacco smoke.

The New York law infringes on the rights of non-marijuana users and those who are allergic to marijuana.  A few months ago, a pot smoker pushed a woman whose husband asked him to stop smoking onto the tracks of a New York subway station. It was the type of violent reaction expected of a marijuana smoker, not a tobacco smoker.   Pot users going violent or psychotic in densely-populated places will cause terror.

Home grows another big mistake

New York could have learned from the mistakes of other states and lessened the blow of legalizing pot by eliminating home grows and putting in potency caps. Home grows, as allowed in states like California and Colorado, are magnets for crime. A week ago, six thieves broke into a marijuana house near Long Beach, California. They were shot by the homeowner, and two men died.

The home-grow allowance is one of the reasons that the illegal marijuana market grows after legalization. Marijuana means money and everyone wants to get into the game. Would-be marijuana dealers can do it in their basements and avoid surveillance. Home growers strain the electric grids and drive up prices for the public, or even steal electricity by tapping into energy sources illegally. The New York residents who were caught growing in Massachusetts after having $10,000 electric bills will no longer need to move to other states.

The New York law allows six home-grown plants. Home grows allowances tie the hands of law enforcement. Police may not conduct searches if neighbors complain of the stench or observe questionable activity in the neighborhood.

Of course, the home grows were going on before legalization, but now New York made it easier.  Fire Captain Michael Fahy was killed in 2016 while fighting a fire at an illegal marijuana growhouse in the Bronx.  His state senator voted in favor of marijuana legalization.

Possession limits are outrageous

The 3-oz flower and 24-gram concentrate possession limits are outrageous.   Our science experts calculate that:

24 grams concentrate that is 80% THC = 19,200mg THC

3 oz Flower at 3% THC = approx. 252 (0.333g) joints: 10mg THC per joint x 84 joints/1oz=840mg THC in 1oz. or 2,520mg THC in 3oz

3 oz Flower at 30% THC = approx. 252 (0.333g) joints: 100mg THC per joint x 84 joints/1oz=8400mg THC in 1oz or 25,200mg THC in 3 oz.

Excessive limits invite drug dealing that will undercut a state-regulated marijuana market.

Equity and “social justice” provisions in the bill amount to gaslighting

Both the New York and Virginia bills claim to set aside licenses for minorities, to bring about equity for communities hit hard by the “war on drugs.”  Huge corporations, including tobacco companies, are buying up marijuana companies and they soon will monopolize the industry, except for the home grows.

When polls say people want legalization, the people want marijuana decriminalized, not commercialized and promoted. The people don’t want the corporate model. Nor do they want neighbors growing smelly, skunk stuff and drug dealers buying up multiple homes — both of which will become the reality.

The New York law allows only six home-grown plants, but to law enforcement, there will be no difference between two plants and 40 plants.  Already in most of the United States, the smell or presence of marijuana has become an excuse to let people go.  It happened two weeks ago when a speeding driver in Houston killed a woman and her three children.  Police had stopped him for speeding 30 minutes earlier and discarded his marijuana, but they couldn’t determine that he was impaired.  New York passed it’s law with no good ways to determine THC-impairment in drivers.

Three years after legalization, 80 percent of the marijuana sold in California goes to the illegal market.  Meanwhile, minorities in California who try to get into the industry go broke, as regulators shut them out.   What makes New York think it can do better?

Foolish political thinking

With New Yorks’s ongoing population loss, one wonders why these politicians would consider such a costly policy.  New York’s new budget calls for an $18 billion increase.

Tax revenue from marijuana sales would cover the costs of administering the program. After that, 40 percent of any remaining dollars would go to a community reinvestment fund, 40 percent would support the state’s public schools and 20 percent would fund drug treatment facilities and public education programs.

The point of 40% of residual tax money for schools? pouring more money into failing schools and further compromising educational achievement by normalizing “stoned classrooms”?

The point of 20% for treatment? The legislation enables more people to become addicted then puts them in treatment with revenue raised from the new people who become addicted.  It’s a law that creates (or worsens an existing problem) to solve a problem.

The US gave up the War on Drugs years ago, but the drug lobby still pushes the false narrative which gets so much political mileage.

More from Parent Opposed to Pot

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Australia: The More Liberal the Drug Laws, the More Violent We Become.

Redlands’ shocking drug-related offenders of the past year | The Courier Mail

Marcel Baum

Presiding Magistrate Deborah Vasta at Cleveland Magistrates Court at times likens drug-fuelled offenders’ desperate activities to that of “cockroaches scurrying about in the dark” not as a cruel taunt, but as a graphic description to reflect to them its lowly nature.

It comes as the Redlands battles an ever-pressing advance of hard drugs, especially methamphetamine – or ice.

For the uninformed, the Redlands, graced with its envied natural landscapes and sought-after, friendly suburbs may represent paradise, yet drug abuse and its accompanying crimes thrive.

The casual visitor at the court might baulk at its prevalence.

From offenders driving stolen vehicles with reckless abandon, a late night home invasion by a drugged up horde of “thugs”, an ice-crazed, shotgun-toting arborist’s chilling threat to an off-duty cop or a once successful property owner’s slide into peddling stolen Lego to feed an insatiable lust for ice – we look at some of Cleveland Magistrates Courts’ more disturbing cases of late.

Trent Strange pleaded guilty to multiple weapons offences in Cleveland Magistrates Court after chasing residents with a stolen shotgun in November. Picture: Facebook

TRENT MATTHEW STRANGE, 31

The defendant pointed his shotgun at the officer and said: “What the f*** are you looking at?”

A meth-bingeing arborist who chased multiple residents, including an off-duty police officer, with a stolen shotgun in the delusional belief that they were paedophiles, had been six years’ off drugs when he had a spectacular relapse, the court heard.

Appearing via video link from Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre on March 1, Trent Matthew Strange, 31, pleaded guilty to a slew of charges including unlawful possession of weapons Category A, B or M; dangerous conduct with weapon; conduct likely to cause alarm with firearm and possession of dangerous drugs, among others.

The court heard multiple terrified residents ran down Redland Bay Road in Capalaba on November 28 at around 9.30am, jumping over fences and hiding in strangers’ homes with a heavily meth-affected, shotgun-toting Strange in pursuit.

In scenes that Magistrate Deborah Vasta described as “like something out of a movie” Strange sent an off-duty police officer, who happened to be purchasing wood in the area, fleeing.

The defendant, the court heard, pointed his shotgun at the officer and said: “What the f*** are you looking at?”

The court was told Strange had undergone a “significant relapse” after years of sobriety when he “wandered over” from a neighbouring yard sale into a Redland Bay Road property in Capalaba on the day of the attack.

“Erratic”, “aggressive” and uttering nonsensical statements a delusional Strange found a black shotgun in an open safe in the back corner of a licensed firearm owner’s shed with which he terrified the street.

Strange’s defence solicitor Kristy Bell, acknowledging it did not lesson his victims’ terror, noted that the shotgun was not loaded and could not have been fired.

Having served 83 days in pre-sentence custody at the time, Strange was sentenced to 12 months’ prison with immediate parole and three years’ probation.

The defendant was also banned from contacting and of coming within 100 metres of his victims.

READ THE FULL STORY

Jakob Porima has been jailed for breaking in to a family’s home in the company of four other males while the residents were present. Picture: Facebook

JAKOB PORIMA, 19

“Every night those kids go to bed, what do you think goes through their heads?”

Last month a teenager claimed through his defence solicitor that he was so drug-affected when he forced his way, with four “thug mates”, into an unsuspecting family’s home at night that he couldn’t remember it, despite “terrorising” his victims.

After a father was bowled over by the five men, a mother with her young daughter was so afraid she broke through an upstairs flyscreen to keep her children from the group’s advances.

Appearing in the dock at Cleveland Magistrates Court on February 22 a teary Jakob Porima, 19, pleaded guilty to entering premises with intent, entering premises with intent at night in company, and attempted entering of a dwelling to commit an indictable offence.

The court heard the Capalaba man barged into a house in his suburb about 10pm on June 8 after knocking loudly on a front door.

Unknown to their victims Porima, with four other males, forced their way into the household, bowling over the father who responded to the knock at the door.

The court heard the victim’s “terrified” partner broke out a flyscreen to help her 10 and six-year-old children escape via an upstairs window.

A police prosecutor said although no physical injuries occurred the household, and especially its children, would have been affected by the “mentally traumatic event”.

Porima, who was recently jailed for three months for similar offending and was on parole at the time, was denounced by Magistrate Deborah Vasta for the trauma he and his “thug mates” may have caused the family.

“I don’t have much sympathy for you,” Magistrate Vasta said.

“The community is sick to death of this type of offending.

“They (the family) must have been absolutely terrified.

“Every night those kids go to bed, what do you think goes through their heads?”

Defence solicitor Rhys Foster said his client was significantly affected by drugs at the time of the offences and claimed to not remember much about them.

Porima was sentenced to two years’ jail for his June 8 offence with an August 21 parole date.

READ THE FULL STORY

Brandyn-Lee Small will spend months in jail for escaping police custody and wilful damage. Picture: Facebook

BRANDYN-LEE SMALL, 21

Smashed body panels and “each and every window” in a “quite controlled” fit of fury with a large crowbar that ended with him standing on the bonnet.

Earlier this month the court heard a 21-year-old man who caused nearly $7,000 in damages when he smashed up a car and who wasted thousands of dollars of public money when a dog squad and police helicopter were activated during an escape, had been addicted to ice since he was 16 years old.

The court heard his meth addiction drove much of his offending.

Described at court as having the temperament of a three-year-old when angry Kingston man Brandyn-Lee Small pleaded guilty to escape by persons in custody and wilful damage when he appeared via video link on March 23.

The court heard Small on October 28 attended the residence of people known to him to discuss the ownership of a motorcycle.

The victims fled their own residence in their heavily damaged vehicle after an “enraged” Small smashed body panels and “each and every window” in a “quite controlled” fit of fury with a large crowbar that ended with him standing on the bonnet.

On October 30 police spotted Small walking towards them at a Capalaba location, questioned him and initiated an arrest.

However Small, exclaiming “f**k this s**t” broke free from officers, the court heard, and led them on an extensive chase which involved a dog squad and police helicopter.

Officers caught up with the defendant on December 1.

Small was sentenced to six months’ jail and ordered to pay his victims $6,870.45 in restitution.

READ THE FULL STORY

Julie-Anne Remmert, 35, of Logan Central had her bail denied at Cleveland Magistrates Court. Picture: Supplied

JULIE-ANNE REMMERT, 35

“You walked into a court with 9.4 grams of ice … How crazy is that?”

A woman who walked into court with more than 9 grams of meth in her possession while drug-affected was in September assured by a magistrate she would not be getting bail unless she could secure placement at a live-in rehabilitation centre.

A tearful Julie-Anne Remmert, 35, appeared via video link from jail at Cleveland Magistrates Court on September 24 on a string of drug possession charges and had her bail denied for a second time.

The court heard Logan Central woman Remmert had appeared at the court on August 18 carrying 9.41 grams of the drug ice – worth an estimated $2,700 on the street – and was promptly arrested.

Having spent some five weeks in custody at the time of her appearance, Remmert told the court she was desperate to get out since she had dried out.

The court heard the defendant had called four rehabilitation centres but had failed in securing a placement which did little to reassure Magistrate Deborah Vasta.

“You walked into a court with 9.4 grams of ice,” Magistrate Vasta said.

“How crazy is that?

“You have a raging drug addiction as is evidenced by you bringing over 9 grams of it to court.

“I don’t accept that you can’t get into rehab.”

Remmert ultimately received a conviction for her offending at a later date.

READ THE FULL STORY

Katrina Shipp. Picture: Facebook.

KATRINA SHIPP, 46

“Do you really want to be chained to this drug for the rest of your life?”

Mount Gravatt woman Katrina Shipp was sentenced in Cleveland Magistrates Court to 18 months’ probation and two months’ imprisonment to be served in the community under an intensive corrections order on charges of stealing and multiple drug offences.

The stealing offence related to brake pads worth $87 from Supercheap Auto Cleveland.

On March 28 last year, Shipp placed the goods in a bag and simply walked out of the store to a vehicle, the registration of which was used to identify her.

The drug charges related to an incident on June 22.

The court was told police heard a glass meth pipe break as it was dropped out of a vehicle intercepted at 6.40pm in Bowen Hills and could still see smoke from the drug in the interior.

Officers discovered a broken glass ice pipe, digital scales, clip seal bags and methamphetamine stored in a shoebox in the vehicle driven by Shipp.

Defence solicitor Rhys Foster said his client had been given her first taste of meth in 2016 after the death of her mother and had started offending in 2017.

Having shown the court dramatic images of before and after images of ice users, Magistrate Deborah Vasta said time was of the essence when treating addiction.

“Do you really want to be chained to this drug for the rest of your life?” she asked.

READ THE FULL STORY

Eugene Bradshaw shows off his bodybuilding efforts. Picture: Facebook.

EUGENE FRANCIS BRADSHAW, 29

“You are someone who wasn’t brought up with violence and yet on a couple of occasions you behaved in a very aggressive and violent manner. And that is what ice does to you.”

In December an enormous bodybuilder who had built up a car cleaning business and had finished all but three subjects of a Master’s degree in Physiotherapy, was given a criminal conviction for defying a probation order after violent offending spurred by an addiction to ice and cocaine.

Dwarfing others at Cleveland Magistrates Court on December 8 Eugene Francis Bradshaw, 29, pleaded guilty to one count of contravene requirement of community based order.

The court heard Bradshaw breached an 18-month probation order he was sentenced to for a common assault and assault occasioning bodily harm in 2018.

Having completed 80 hours of community service as part of the order, the Middle Park man and car cleaning business owner missed appointments prescribed by his probation order and did not engage with domestic violence services, according to a probation officer.

But it was Bradshaw’s propensity for drug-fuelled violence that most concerned Magistrate Deborah Vasta.

“My concern is he is still hiding behind his drug use and I think the drugs were behind his violent behaviour on his last girlfriend on that night, where he could have very easily been charged with unlawful striking causing death,” Magistrate Vasta said.

Supported at court by his parents, who defence barrister James Veivers described as notable academics from Warwick, the defendant was said to be ashamed to still be drug dependent.

In a sobering gesture, Mr Veivers pointed to the dock and said his client understood where he would end up were he to continue with an admitted five-year addiction to ice and cocaine.

“I think it is the ice,” Magistrate Vasta said.

“You are someone who wasn’t brought up with violence and yet on a couple of occasions you behaved in a very aggressive and violent manner.

“And that is what ice does to you”.

Deemed not suitable for probation by the court Bradshaw was ordered to complete 80 hours of community service.

A conviction was recorded.

READ THE FULL STORY

Meth addiction drives father’s vile offending.

PAUL EDWARDS

“You are just crucifying your family,”

In April a drug-fuelled Victoria Point serial upskirter agreed with a magistrate that he was “crucifying his family” with his deviant behaviour which included terrorising a woman with her young daughter.

Paul Edwards, 33, pleaded guilty to seven counts of making observations or recordings in breach of privacy when he appeared at the Cleveland Magistrates Court on April 17 via video link.

The court heard Edwards had filmed the anal and genital regions of women without their consent at numerous locales including Victoria Point Bunnings, McDonalds, Victoria Point Tavern and a local shopping centre between June and December of 2019.

His covert filming lasted between 15 seconds to nearly five minutes and in one instance included a young girl.

On December 20, 2019 a victim nearly fell over a crouched down Edwards on Colburn Ave.

The frightened woman, who was with her child, was smirked at by Edwards after she hid in her locked vehicle.

The court heard Edwards’ serial and compulsive offending was driven by an addiction to methamphetamine, for which he had completed numerous drug counselling courses.

Magistrate Deborah Vasta said she did not believe Edwards’ offending was oriented to children but condemned his “creepy behaviour”.

“You are just crucifying your family,” Magistrate Vasta said.

Edwards was fined $300 and sentenced to nine months’ prison with immediate release on six months’ parole and three years’ probation.

A conviction was recorded.

READ THE FULL STORY

Prison the only option for out of control offender.

JENNA-LEE WOOD, 30

“Nothing was going to stop you … You were on a path towards destruction.”

A young mother whose life spiralled out of control after a dramatic uptake of hard drugs was released from jail on February 1 after a court’s attempt to curtail her “path towards destruction”.

Appearing via video link from custody at the Cleveland Magistrates Court Jenna-Lee Wood, 30, sobbed when she realised she would be released after a three-month stint behind bars.

The Wynnum woman pleaded guilty to more than a dozen charges, including being in possession of cocaine, methamphetamine, cannabis and drug utensils.

However, her “most serious” charges were for twice committing fraud at jewellery stores to the tune of thousands of dollars by using stolen identities, and illegally using rental vehicles, for which she was charged with unlawful use of vehicle and unlawful possession of vehicle.

With no criminal history before her precipitous downfall to drugs in 2019, Wood was warned by the court jail was the only option for her at the time of her arrest.

“Nothing was going to stop you,” Magistrate Deborah Vasta said.

“You were on a path towards destruction.”

The court heard the defendant used a stolen identity to secure $1,523 in finance at Prouds the Jewellers at Carindale on October 4 in 2019, and defrauded Prouds the Jewellers in Wynnum of $1418 the day after.

Defence solicitor Jon Ide said his client had no criminal record prior to her 2019 downfall to drugs and was the mother of a nine-year-old.

Wood was fined $300 and sentenced to three months’ prison with immediate parole.

READ THE FULL STORY

Ice drags successful man into drugged despair.

CAMERON PATRICK DAVEY, 33

“I have done everything I can … you need a taste of prison.”

In December the court heard how a man’s successful life had imploded in the face of a fierce drug addiction that reduced him to stealing thousands of dollars in Lego to satisfy his ice habit.

A well dressed Cameron Patrick Davey, 33, cut a forlorn figure as he was taken into custody on December 4.

It came after Victoria Point man Davey pleaded guilty to a string of offences including eight counts of stealing, three counts of trespass, attempted fraud and receiving tainted goods among others.

The court heard Davey’s was an example of a successful life imploded by a fierce drug addiction.

Introduced to meth during a toxic relationship, the court was told, the defendant discarded a wholesome relationship, lost two properties and became insolvent in the space of a few years as his spiral became all consuming.

A police prosecutor said the man would admit to police that he, together with his then partner, orchestrated a series of desperate Lego thefts:

Davey stole more than $4,000 in the building blocks on six occasions between May 21 and September 25.

Working with his partner while using a trolley to secrete Lego under other parcels the thieving duo hit Cannon Hill Kmart, Robina Kmart, Coomera Target, Pacific Fair Target in Broadbeach and Mr Toys Toyworld in Chermside.

The court heard a September 4 raid on a Capalaba residence uncovered 19 boxes of the toys, which did not include parcels already sold on to fund ice.

Having previously given the man the benefit of a good behaviour bond, community service, probation and bail for similar offending – only for him to reoffend within days – Magistrate Deborah Vasta did not hesitate to give him “a taste of prison”.

“My entire efforts to change your ways have been completely ignored,” Magistrate Vasta said.

“I have done everything I can … you need a taste of prison.”

Davey was sentenced to four months’ imprisonment with a December 24 parole date and two-and-a-half years’ probation.

He was further fined $300 for a breach of community service order and ordered to pay $2,275 for his part in the thefts.

READ THE FULL STORY

Jacob Anthony Keneally was jail for vehicle theft.

JACOB ANTHONY KENEALLY, 31

“You have had nine years of the courts trying to get you off drugs.”

In June Magistrate Deborah Vasta made plain her disgust for an ice-user’s community-damaging offending and did not accept “the scourge of ice” as a legitimate explanation for his “completely selfish” behaviour.

It came after Wynnum man Jacob Anthony Keneally, 31, pleaded guilty to breaking and entering and unlawful use of a vehicle when he appeared via video link on June 2.

The court heard Wynnum local Keneally had stolen a Mitsubishi Lancer from an Alexandra Hills dwelling at around 6am on February 28, while the residents were home, and caused over $4,000 in damages to it.

“I for one am absolutely sick to death of people just breaking into houses and stealing cars,” Magistrate Deborah Vasta said.

“This type of offence has really crept into our society in the last 10 years.

“And it is not explained by drugs, it is explained by a complete disregard for others’ property and rights.”

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Duncan Blackburn said the offending had occurred while the defendant had been on parole for another vehicle theft and said the man’s behaviour seemed to be driven by drugs based on a “smattering” of drug offences on his record.

Defence solicitor Bruce Johnstone said the offending could be put down to “the scourge of ice”.

“It is just one of those situations where prison will be a revolving door if he doesn’t get his act together,” Mr Johnstone said.

However, the explanation won little favour with the magistrate who would not entertain drugs as a “convenient excuse”.

“This is just thinking it is absolutely acceptable to enter someone’s private dwelling and not only steal their car and drive it around but the reckless way that he has used that vehicle, without any care in the world because he is not the one who paid for it.

“He didn’t work hard to earn that car, so this excuse that it is drugs doesn’t wash with me.

“You’ve just gone in and helped yourself.

“It is just completely selfish and you don’t care about the damage you are doing.

“You have had nine years of the courts trying to get you off drugs.

“When will you decide you have had enough? Because I can assure you society has had enough.”

Keneally was convicted, sentenced to 20 months’ imprisonment with a parole eligibility date of July 1 and ordered to pay $4,188 in restitution.

READ THE FULL STORY

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Redlands Coast

Police allege needle in lap, knife, replica pistol spark violent arrest

“A history of extreme violence”: Prosecutors have warned a man released today on bail was an “unacceptable risk” following an intercept that allegedly involved a knife, fake pistol and uncapped needle.

For complete article Courier Mail 

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Colorado: The Cannabis Chaos & Carnage Continue – Legalization a MISTAKE!

A founding father of legal pot reveals regrets | PERSPECTIVE

  • Robert Corry  April 2021

People attending an Amendment 64 watch party celebrate on Nov. 2012, after a local television station announced the marijuana amendment’s passage in Denver.

Editor’s note: Robert Corry played a prominent and pivotal role in the movement to legalize marijuana in Colorado. The University of Colorado graduate and Stanford-trained lawyer helped draft ground-breaking Amendment 64 on Colorado’s 2012 state-wide ballot — permitting production and retail sales of recreational pot. Corry also designed and implemented the dispensary framework for patients and caregivers under Amendment 20, enacted by the state’s voters in 2000 to allow medical use of marijuana. As a trial attorney, he represented hundreds of clients accused of marijuana-related offenses, and he litigated cases and administrative actions involving Amendment 64’s implementation. Yet, nearly a decade after voter approval of his handiwork, he now professes deep disappointment and wide-ranging regrets. In today’s Perspective, he issues a searing indictment of how legalization has turned out. He decries the legal marijuana industry’s “crony” capitalism and its cozy relationship with government. He lets on, “I wish I could be proud of what we created, but I’m not. The outcome of 64 is shameful, hurts people, and Colorado is not ‘safer.’ ”

We started with the best of intentions. Colorado Amendment 64, which I helped draft, made three promises:

  • End marijuana prohibition; legalize it; protect individual rights to grow and distribute on a personal level; focus limited police resources against real crime with actual victims.
  • Create a free-enterprise system, taxed and regulated similar to alcohol for commercial sales, to allow for true competition and innovation by upstanding businesspeople.
  • Regulate industrial hemp as an agricultural commodity distinct from the psychoactive drug. To be legally considered hemp, plants and finished product must meet a strict ceiling of 0.3% or less delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (“THC”), the psychoactive ingredient.

Based on these three promises, Colorado voters passed 64, the “Alcohol-Marijuana Equalization Initiative.” The campaign focused on the question of what is “safer,” marijuana or alcohol. SAFER (Safer Alternative for Enjoyable Recreation) was the name of the primary advocacy organization behind 64.

I helped write Amendment 64, litigated numerous cases before and after 64 to make it a reality, and also helped design implementing regulations at the state and local levels.

I wish I could be proud of what we created, but I’m not. The outcome of 64 is shameful, hurts people, and Colorado is not “safer.”

I have remained consistent through the years in advocating for legalization, an end to marijuana prohibition, and an end to criminal prosecution of marijuana offenses.

What I have changed my mind on — applying current reality I was too naive to anticipate 10 years ago — is the wisdom of a commercialized, for-profit, elitist, government-protected, privileged, monopolistic industry that perpetuates itself and its obscene profits, to the detriment of the public good and the planet earth.

No true free enterprise exists in this regulated industry, but rather a small oligopoly of crony capitalists who are given privileged government licenses. Licenses are capped, and new entry is nearly impossible. Extreme regulations are created and supported by the big players, and benefit these big players over smaller competitors. The regulators daily pass through an unrestrained revolving door between government and the industry they supposedly regulate. True competition is lacking. Industry exploits its centrally planned regulatory system to fix inflated prices, and government chips in extreme taxes at levels imposed on no other product. Regressive pricing disproportionately harms the poor. And the quality of this overpriced commercialized product is awful, and harmful to adults and children alike. No wonder we still grow it ourselves, even though that’s still a crime.

The inmates are running Colorado’s marijuana asylum. Amendment 64 created a corporate lobby that punches far above its weight. To demonstrate this industry’s unjustified political clout, even during a pandemic, the governor and the Denver mayor deemed marijuana businesses “essential,” while schools, churches, gyms, and most other nonbig box stores were shut. So, it was not “essential” to educate our children — our future — but it was “essential” to maintain those children’s access to high-potency corporate marijuana. And access it they surely do.

The pot lobby has cleverly cultivated an image of hip social responsibility. But underneath the hipster beards and effete skinny jeans, lurks old-fashioned corporate crony greed, rent-seeking, and regressive suppression of the poor. The fawning that legislators and executive branch officials bestow on this criminal cabal is mystifying.

Especially with a supposedly “progressive” Legislature. This industry genetically modifies plants at a level that would make Monsanto blush, fouls our planet with chemicals and wasteful growing systems, harms the poor and children, is dominated by the wealthy and privileged, and proclaims its brilliance to a nauseating degree.

… To genetically engineer high THC levels, corporations grow indoors, in gigantic football-field sized warehouses. Growers of this GMO eliminate the plant’s natural pollination process and clone mutant female plants as inbred, and thus weaker and more susceptible. To duplicate the light of the sun requires arrays of large artificial lights, emitting extremely hot temperatures and using massive quantities of energy. Growers “trick” the mutant plants into excessive flowering by artificially altering daytime or growing seasons indoors. Massive rows of air conditioning units run day and night to cool indoor growing operations, taxing power grids. Big air fans also need to keep dank air moving inside. Genetically modified indoor plants are also more susceptible to environmental pests such as powdery mildew, black mold, spider mites, or others which feast on the indoor plants within the controlled environment without natural predators. To kill bugs, growers soak the plants in chemicals, pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers. The toxic carcinogens are ingested by the consumer or run off directly into Colorado’s scarce water.

See also Cannabis GIANT Carbon Footprint 

On a proportional basis, corporate marijuana is Colorado’s worst environmental polluter. It pumps chemicals and carbon greenhouse gases into our air, uses tons of energy, harms our climate, dirties our drinking water, and ruins our environment. It stinks, literally and figuratively. Most of the foul-smelling warehouses are next door to a poor or minority neighborhood, whose children grow up smelling the skunky chemical stench. None of this is necessary; marijuana should be grown outdoors, but then artificially pumping up THC potency would be harder and more expensive.

And this is only the actual plant flower. When the corporations further manipulate it to produce concentrates or edibles, even more poisonous chemicals, more power and energy, more runoff, are used to bring the THC levels up in wax, oil, shatter, or edibles.

In 2016, I filed a class-action lawsuit against one of Colorado’s largest marijuana corporations, caught using the notorious Eagle-20 Fungicide on their marijuana plants. Eagle-20 is designed only for outdoor ornamental plants, i.e. outside flowers that you only look at, not plants consumed by humans and definitely not for indoor enclosed environments. Eagle-20 contains myclobutanil, a chemical which, when heated, turns into hydrogen cyanide, a lethal gas. The effects of this awful gas are even more pronounced when it is concentrated and stuck into artificial plastic vape pens for heating, which are easier to carry and harder to detect, thus have become the preferred method of consumption for teens, along with glass “dab rigs” that resemble crack pipes.

The quality of this “marijuana on steroids” is artificial and unappealing, if one’s mind and taste buds are clear. The “high” is not really a positive happy high at all, but either a dead numbness or a scary psychotic paranoia, especially with edibles or concentrates. Frequent users develop tolerance, and eventually crave it. A permanent addict customer base, resulting in higher profits.

For complete article https://gazette.com/opinion/a-founding-father-of-legal-pot-reveals-regrets-perspective/article_a5fe245e-9245-11eb-bbc9-67b202c2c04c.html

 

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GLOBAL: Invitation to Best Practice Webinar – PREVENTION.

Warm welcome to join our monthly webinar on 7th of April at 12:00 noon UTC. This time we will focus on drug prevention.

Drug prevention is a key element of the sustainable development agenda. Nevertheless, drug prevention is often overlooked and ignored, especially in countries that discuss plans to legalize cannabis or to decriminalize cannabis and other drugs.

But there are also inspiring examples of initiatives for community mobilization for drug prevention. Some members of Movendi International have run impressive community mobilization campaigns for the promotion of drug prevention.

This webinar is about hearing from them, discussing with them and learning from their experience.

The goal of this webinar is to inspire and empower to develop similar initiatives and to connect members with experts in the field of drug prevention.

As the topic is rising in importance, we want to build capacity and share best practices so that we can all engage proactively and effectively in the drug policy debate and to advance drug prevention.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER  

TOPIC: Mobilization around drug prevention

TIME: Wednesday, 7th of April, 2021 at 12:00 noon UTC.

Go to this link and check what time the meeting starts in your country.

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USA: Weed & Criminal Justice – Another Reason to ‘Legalize Weed’ Vanishes

TWO HUGE CHANGES ABOUT CANNABIS AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE, IN THE US

The good news comes from a study finding that the inequality in sentencing between blacks and white drug offenders has gone down to zero.  That conclusion was published March 15, 2021, by Oxford University Press on behalf of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  The study covers the years between 2009 and 2018, and it studied the federal court, rather than state court, system.

The bad news comes from the impacts of increased cannabis potency.  Support in Colorado and Washington for potency limits is growing.  Although previous attempts failed because of the pot industry’s power, this year the potency caps may pass.

The following information comes from a government report issued March 2021, by The United States Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control, signed by Senators John Cornyn and Dianne Feinstein was sent to all senators. On page 17, the 58-page Senate publication reports on “THE IMPACTS OF INCREASED CANNABIS POTENCY:

“Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentrations, or cannabis potency, have increased dramatically over the past three decades. According to a peer-reviewed study, in the 1990s, the average THC concentration in illicit cannabis plant material was about four percent. By 2014, that figure had tripled to about 12 percent. Today, the average potency of THC in cannabis products sold in dispensaries in the United States is between 18 and 23 percent, and the price per serving for most product types has decreased in certain states, making it potentially more accessible

“According to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), cannabis concentrates, a highly potent form of THC that often looks like honey or butter, can be up to four times stronger than the THC found in top quality cannabis flower, and ranges from 40 to 80 percent.  Such concentrates are typically used in cannabis infused foods, beverages, and e-cigarettes.

Addiction increases with potency increases

“At the same time that potency and availability are increasing, so too is daily or near daily cannabis use. Nationally, between 2009 and 2018, among those 12 and older who reported using cannabis in the past 30 days, the percentage who used daily or almost daily increased by 18 percent. By 2019, an estimated 13.8 million Americans were using cannabis daily.”  (To find the sources, we suggest you go to the original report and check the footnotes.)

Other topics in the report include concerns about vaping, driving and the increase in youth use of marijuana.

Discrepancies in drug sentencing gone

Although discrepancies in sentencing between blacks and whites can make for a skewed system of justice and bring shame to the US, no one can claim any longer that it happens because of drug laws. Eliminating mandatory minimums and closing the gap between crack and cocaine sentencing helped to bring about the change. Although the public cannot access the study, an Abstract explains the findings:

“Racial inequality in sentencing has decreased substantially over the last decade. In 2009, the average sentencing difference between black and white defendants in federal court was nearly 3 yrs. By 2018, this difference was less than 6 mos. Among drug offenders over this same period, the black–white gap went from 47 mos. down to zero. Yet, even though racial inequality in the legal system remains at the fore of sociological discourse, these developments remain conspicuously under-evaluated and the underlying processes driving these changes remain unknown. This article fills this gap by applying longitudinal decomposition methods to US District Court data between 2009 and 2018.

“Three notable findings emerge. First, the declining racial gap was driven, in equal parts, by decreasing black sentences and increasing white sentences. Second, black and white sentences became more equal almost entirely due to changes in observable case characteristics and not due to changes in the treatment of offenders. Third, shifts in the prosecutorial use of mandatory minimums played a critical role in decreasing black–white sentencing inequality.”

The author of this study, Michael T. Light, Associate Professor of Sociology and Criminology at the University of Wisconsin, has successfully studied other misunderstand claims about the criminal justice system.  He thanks Grace Li, Makena Meyers, and Samantha Zeid for their assistance with this article.

Conclusions, what next?

We should strive for a color-blind system of justice but stop claiming that drug crimes drive inequality of justice.

Mandatory minimums are going away and more white criminals are going into the game of drug crime. However, people still pretend that drug use is harmless and that governments use drug laws for the sole purpose of harassing people.

Drug use victimizes the users and the public, with horrendous results.  Legalization brings legitimacy and normalization of drug use. Those who want to legalize drugs offer no alternatives for ending the violence and crime triggered by drug use. They minimize or deny the brain damage caused by cannabis and other drugs.

Two huge changes about cannabis and criminal justice, in the US – Parents Opposed to Pot (poppot.org)

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USA: Marijuana – The Toxin that Just Keeps on Hurting!

NEW YORK DAD SAYS MARIJUANA COMPLICIT IN SON’S HEROIN OVERDOSE DEATH

With the recent passage of a COVID relief bill, New York just lost a major excuse for legalizing weed.

By Jeffrey Veatch, originally published October 2018

September marked the 10th anniversary of my son Justin’s death at age 17 from an accidental drug overdose. The medical examiner’s report months later said it was heroin that killed him. But I have to say for Justin it all began with marijuana, and I’m angrier at marijuana than I am at heroin. Here’s why.

Justin was a good student, an extremely talented musician and songwriter on the verge of completing the recording of his first original music album. On Sunday, Sept. 7, 2008, Justin spent the afternoon with people we didn’t know and came home later than expected as he readied for his first full week as a senior at Yorktown High School. He never woke up that Monday morning. Somewhere along the way that Sunday he had snorted heroin.

As a parent who was devastated about losing his son to drugs, I was determined to acquire the understanding about how this could have happened and to tell Justin’s story in schools and community events so other teens could be warned. We know heroin kills. It’s the direct cause of an epidemic ravaging our nation right now. But to ignore the role marijuana plays in overdose deaths is like ignoring the role tobacco plays in lung cancer.

Link to other drug use now known

Hidden in the statistics surrounding opioid deaths is the fact that many victims like Justin who were never pain patients started their drug experimentation with recreational marijuana. In 2005, the year Justin and some of his friends began to experiment with it, there was little concern about its dangers. When we confronted Justin after learning he was smoking marijuana at age 14 we had many battles with him and brought him to counseling sessions.

Justin’s counselor was not significantly concerned and we kind of let it go. During the next two years the marijuana seemed to go away. But something else was happening outside of our awareness. Justin was experiencing anxieties he wouldn’t talk about and was self medicating with pills. The pills turned out to be the opioids we now know have created so much carnage in our country. Justin apparently became dependent and when he could not obtain opioid painkillers he started to experiment with street heroin — never injecting but snorting the powder.

Drug use seldom begins with heroin. In fact, marijuana is the most common gateway drug.

This marijuana link to harder drugs among vulnerable teens is now being backed by studies. Research cited by the marijuana policy group Smart Approaches to Marijuana, co-founded by Patrick Kennedy, shows teens who experiment with marijuana are twice as likely to abuse opioids, three times more likely to try heroin. Research cited by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health shows 22 percent of 18- to 25-year-olds use marijuana despite the proven fact that marijuana negatively affects the developing brain. A new survey released by the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention shows that 2 million middle and high school students say they have used e-cigarettes to vape marijuana products.

My work today

In my experience traveling to schools in different towns and different states to speak with students the situation is always the same. There are handfuls of young people like Justin who have been impacted in a similar way by marijuana.  If you consider the number of cities and towns in the United States (The U.S. Census counts 19,354) and do the math, we have a huge population of teens who are falling prey to dangerous drugs because of their decision to experiment with marijuana and its derivatives like edibles and hash oil. What happened to Justin and so many others needs to be seriously considered as states ponder changes in marijuana policy.

Yes, marijuana isn’t the drug we find when a victim overdoses. But it often is the one responsible for bringing that person to that darker place.

Jeffrey Veatch tells his son’s story in the multimedia talk, A Message from Justin.  Read more about Justin Veatch on the MomsStrong.org website, But for marijuana, my son would still be here.  

Jeffrey is president of The Justin Veatch Fund.  We’ve previously published about him.

Legislative attempts to legalize marijuana began about three years ago. The New York legislature will discuss marijuana legalization again this year. Politicians express the misleading idea that revenue from marijuana may fill budget shortfalls.  

Source New York Dad says marijuana complicit in son’s heroin overdose death – Parents Opposed to Pot (poppot.org)

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EVERY BRAIN MATTERS – Website Launch

EVERY BRAIN MATTERS – Especially Your Childs!

Can we tell our youth that, once they’re an adult, it’s ok to have a joint once every week,  just as drinking a glass of wine or beer once a week can be done without lasting harm?

The answer is no, particularly in regards to psychotic outcomes. Every Brain Matters, our new website, addresses all aspects of the drug policy, with a special emphasis on saving brains. Some individuals experience acute psychosis after their first use.

A substantial percentage of the population cannot use marijuana without major adverse consequences.

The biggest risks from marijuana use are psychological risks, and these risks greatly increase if a person begins use when the brain is developing. Unfortunately, most North American youth have the wrong information and believe marijuana is relatively harmless.

The frequency of psychotic outcomes has increased exponentially during the 21st century. Stronger, more potent forms of marijuana have become the common forms sold in dispensaries and all efforts to cap the THC in commercial stores have failed in states with legal pot shops. The marijuana of the 1960s, 70s and 80s also triggered psychosis in some individuals, but less frequently. (For example, see two of our multi-part testimonies: A tale of two friends and Years of pot, drug addiction and homelessness.)

How the misconceptions affect drug policy

We shouldn’t make a policy based on the very few people who appear to use marijuana with impunity.  Family history and genetic testing cannot determine who will face adverse consequences.

We must reject all attempts to accept and normalize pot use, to open stores, and to legalize in the name of generating tax money, because every brain matters.

Most of us think we shouldn’t control what people do in the privacy of the home. That belief doesn’t square off with the fact that most people have no idea how dangerous marijuana is.  They have no idea of the risks they’re taking when they’re starting and continuing to smoke pot, and Every Brain Matters corrects the misconceptions.    Keeping drugs illegal is a “harm reduction” policy.

Groups like Parents Opposed to Pot, Parent Movement 2.0  and One Chance to Grow up (Smart Colorado) have reached out to youth, warning of the dangers of early pot use. Many teens have come to the new idea of not using before age 18. They get the notion that marijuana can wait and then wait until senior year or age 19 or 20. This delayed use also comes with great risk, and marijuana actually is not safe for any age.

The Mission of Every Brain Matters

Every Brain Matters is a community and a unifying alliance of organizations and individuals that educate about the dangers of marijuana and the drug culture expansion.

We work together to bring about a cultural movement through advocacy, support/recovery, science, visual public awareness by encouraging the use of the EBM merchandise, and by promoting optimal brain and environmental health.

Please check out the website, everybrainmatters.org, and help us spread the message. There are numerous ways you can donate.

Poppot.org launches new website: Every Brain Matters – Parents Opposed to Pot

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USA: Colorado Kids ‘Collateral Damage’ to Cannabis Chaos

 

The threat to kids is growing, but so is momentum for action

Courageous Colorado parents are speaking up too

  • “When young people with developing brains use high-concentrate THC products, it can seriously and irreparably harm their intellect, mental health, and physical well being. This is settled science,” wrote parent Robin Noble in The Colorado Sun.
  • “The idea that all marijuana products are harmless is naive. Research is catching up; parents need to know the truth and take a stand. Instead of protecting kids, we’ve made a challenging world harder to navigate,” wrote parent Jennifer Cunningham in the Boulder Daily Camera.

Donate Now to   One Chance to Grow UpDonate

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Global: Drug Use Terrorism, Violence & Radicalisation – And we want to legalize more???

Youth with drug addiction vulnerable to radicalization

(Like the Fire Triangle Model  – you take out one element of the three, and the fire goes out! Take the drug use element and you significantly reduce the other two)

Young people and teenagers are the most vulnerable group for radical influences due to the fact that they are the most energetic and dynamic social group prone to social protest and high-risk behaviors. Another risk factor for young people to become involved in extreme activities is drug addiction.

Extremism and drug addiction have common ground. Being global in nature, both phenomena have destructive character and serious consequences for humanity. Violent crimes are often carried out by aggressors being drunk or under the influence of psychoactive substances

Extremist organizations are often funded by financial resources obtained from drug trafficking. A 2016 report commissioned by the European Union associated Al-Shabaab with heroin trafficking, transporting it from ports in areas it controls to Europe and also cocaine trafficking into Kenya.

A report by the National Authority for the Campaign against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (Nacada) has shown that children as young as four are using alcohol and other substances. The report blames the exposure of children to drugs to poor parenting; saying children whose parents or guardians consume drugs or alcohol are more likely to become users themselves. For complete article go toYouth with drug addiction vulnerable to radicalization – Epuka Ugaidi

Also see ATTACKERS SMOKED WEED 

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