Monday, November 30, 2009

Canada's Bill C-15 a copy of US Failing Drug Policy


Article: Just Say No to Bill C-15 on December 2nd

Article Source: http://www.cannabisculture.com/v2/content/just-say-no-bill-c-15-december-2

By Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy - Monday, November 23 2009

On Wednesday, December 2, 2009 CSSDP chapters across Canada are going to be demonstrating against the introduction of mandatory minimum sentences, sending the message that young Canadians need education not condemnation. Mandatory incarceration will not help young Canadians!

In Ottawa young Canadians will be handcuffed on Parliament Hill to represent the negative impacts on those caught up by this bill. We will be distributing handouts and engaging with folks on the hill and in the streets to get people to speak out against Bill C-15.

Go to http://whyprohibition.ca/content/vote-no-bill-c-15 for more ways to help stop Bill C-15

Bill C-15 is a copy of the failing US Drug Policy implementing mandatory minimums (jail time) under the "tough on crime" approach. I find this step by Canada a step back in the wrong direction after the decriminalization that the country has experienced over the past decades. In the mind of a prohibitionist this is clearly a sign of US government's pressure on criminalizing the drug on a harsher level so that Canada's marijuana culture does not step over the border, but could it be more than that? According to the article from http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=867 the prison industry is one of America's most profitable industry. If you want to make lots of money that is the industry you want to get into, but at what cost? In the same article it is reported, "Roughly half of the industry is controlled by the Nashville-based Corrections Corporation of America, which runs 46 penal institutions in 11 states. It took ten years for the company to reach 10,000 beds; it is now growing by that same number every year." The top of the prison industry players are clear that CCA is the dominant company that has been growing as a result of the financial success of the profitable industry. Is growth for the prison industry a good thing for the American people? Why has this industry been growing so quickly? These answers are in the article as well. As reported, "The rate for most serious crimes has been dropping or stagnant for the past 15 years, but during the same period severe repeat offender provisions and a racist "get-tough" policy on drugs have helped push the US prison population up from 300,000 to around 1.5 million during the same period. This has produced a corresponding boom in prison construction and costs, with the federal government's annual expenditures in the area, now $17 billion. In California, passage of the infamous "three strikes" bill will result in the construction of an additional 20 prisons during the next few years." It is known that the prison industry uses lobbyists just like the marijuana legislation organizations, but what benefits the people? These prison guard lobbyists support harsher punishments for less serious crimes so that there will always be another prisoner in need of a facility like a private prison who looks for ensuring that there are no vacancies similar to a hotel's business objective. I believe the urge to implement Bill C-15 comes as a result of Conservative Canadian government under Prime Minister Stephen Harper and individuals associated with the prison industry who seek more financial success this time in Canada. The irony is that as we see state laws changing in many states in the US for the better, Canada is being led back in the dark in regards to drug policy reform.
- Felix Pavolotsky
Kent State SSDP

Wiretapping for Drug Crimes Exposed


Feingold Questions Department of Justice Officials on PATRIOT Act

Senator Feingold questions Assistant Attorney General David Kris and Inspector General Glenn Fine at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on reauthorizing the USA PATRIOT Act on September 23, 2009.


Former Dept of Justice official under the division of the Drug Enforcement Agency head official, Karen Tandy, the same person who decided to spend our tax dollars on going after Tommy Chong for his family's bong business as well as "The Prince of Pot" Marc Scott Emery decided to step down from her position from the DEA for a head position in the Motorola cellular phone company. Does something sound suspicious here? I think so! ^ KAREN TANDY




Especially after this video was released of Senator Feingold questioning Assistant Attorney General David Kris and Inspector General Glenn Fine at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on reauthorizing the USA PATRIOT Act on September 23, 2009. What they found out was that the unpopular Patriot Act created by the Bush Administration was being utilized to wiretap individuals for a majority of crimes not related to terrorism. Only on 3 occasion where secret sneak and peak operations where used for terrorist related crimes while the other over 700 cases did not involve terrorist activity. Senator Feingold mentioned that of these sneak and peek searches a majority was used for drug crime not related to terrorist activity. He mentined that in these sneek and peek operations home owners where not notified of them until months later and acknowleged that the notifications where supposed to be sent out within 7 days for criminal drug cases that where non related to terrorist activity. As a result Feingold suggested making safeguards that would protect the American people from the abuse of power that was implemented in the Patriot Act.

- FELIX PAVOLOTSKY
Kent State SSDP

Marc Emery Vs The US Government

Embed Video Code:


Video Description: Originally released on August 14th, 2005. The title of this video was changed to removed possible confusion regarding content. This video was originally titled "SMOKE OUT AT THE USA CONSULATE IN VANSTERDAM! Sept 10th" rallying support for the upcoming protests that were being planned.

Video clips detailing the raid on Emery Seeds, thanks to Newshawks Fran and Orion.

A meeting to form a planning committee for the September 10th rally will take place at the BCMP Bookstore in the basement on Thursday August 4th at 4pm, anybody who wants to get involved and have a say in what happens is welcome. No Narcs Please.

In reaction to America's recent attack on Canadian Sovereignty through the raid on Marc Emery Seeds a HUGE Smokeout at the US Consulate in Vansterdam is being planned for September 10th. It is time to Smoke Out the USA and get the DEA out of Canada. Stay Tuned to Pot.TV for more details. Free marc Emery, Free Michelle Rainey, Free MarijuaMan, Free Renee Boje, Free Marijuana Prisoners Everywhere!

We encourage activists in other Provinces to hold sister rallies at US Consulates on this same day and our American Brothers and Sisters to organize events at local Canadian Consulates to tell them not to listen to the Bush Administration.

My Thoughts: I feel that it is unconstitutional that our United States Government is seeking action against Marc Emery at the cost of our wasted tax dollars. We wasted our tax dollars to apprehend Tommy Chong for his family's bong business and now we are going after a seed seller who paid his federal taxes to the Canadian government and they knew about him the entire time. There are many seed stores that currently operate like the one that Marc once owned, but few if any pay their federal taxes for their business. The Canadian government would be pestered by medical marijuana users in Canada and the government would send them to Marc. Now our United States Drug Enforcement Agency decided to pressure and bully the Canadian government into going after him.In the statement seen here (DEA Statement http://freemarc.ca/sites/default/files/Tandystatement.jpg) made by former DEA head official Karen Tandy. She said, "Today's DEA arrest of Marc Scott Emery, publisher of Cannabis Culture Magazine and founder of a marijuana legislation group is a significant blow not only to the marijuana trafficking trade in the US and Canada to the marijuana legislation movement." She goes on to talk how hundreds of thousands of dollars that he sent to marijuana legislation organization throughout the world will now have less money to rely on. These statements are blatantly against his political activities which according to the US- Canada Extradition Treaty is illegal to go after an individual for political motivation.

What do you think? Shoul We go after Marc for his seed business and political activities like the DEA wants to? Do you think that spending our tax dollars on capturing Marc is a good move? Do you think that using our tax dollars on going after Tommy Chong was beneficial for stopping violent drug crime? Let me know your thoughts on this blog

What can we do? There are several things we can do from passing out fliers about Marc with facts about himself regarding this case seen at http://freemarc.ca/ or e can contact important government officials as seen below like Seattle, Washington Judge Ricardo Martinez or US President Barack Obama.

Contact Judge Ricardo Martinez in Seattle, Washington and tell him that he should let Marc Emery return home to Canada sentence instead of the 5-year term in a US prison according to the plea deal.
Mail: Honorable Ricardo S. Martinez
U.S. Courthouse
700 Stewart Street, Suite 13134
Seattle, WA
98101-9906
USA

Or Contact President Barack Obama and tell him that he should pardon Canadian citizen Marc Emery and let him return home to Canada.

Phone: (202) 456-1414 (switchboard) and (202) 456-1111 (comments)
Fax: (202) 456-2461
Mail: The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC
20500
USA

-Felix Pavlotsky

Sunday, November 29, 2009

New School Opens in Michigan!




Michigan recently opened a new college; Med Grow Cannabis College. This college runs on a six-week program and will cost $485 to attend. It was opened by a 24-year-old that thinks that pot-growing can stimulate Michigan's economy and bring jobs to many people that remain unemployed. The program covers everything from growing techniques to pot-food recipes. They offer continuing education which includes workshops once a month, so that alumni can stay up-to-date on the latest techniques. Their curriculum includes classes in cannabis history, legal education, horticulture, cannabis as medicine, cooking, and caregiving.

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Med Grow Cannabis College website: http://www.medgrowmi.com/
Newser Article: http://www.newser.com/story/75000/school-of-pot-opens-in-michigan.html
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Check it out and let me know what you think!
Do you think this will happen in Ohio in the future? If so, how long do you think it will take?

Till next time,
Angelica
agagliar.blogspot.com

Tuesday, November 24, 2009



According to: http://www.dosenation.com/listing.php?id=6825

This graphic illustrates the popularity of marijuana consumption, the federal tax dollars spent to keep marijuana illegal, and the possible tax revenues that could be generated if marijuana production were legalized and taxed like any other agricultural product.

history of cannabis

Let's Take A Look At Drugs!

Hey guys,
I found this video on Oxycontin and prescription drugs in the state of Florida. It's a piece of Journalism from the site/television network Current (http://current.com/). This series is called Vanguard and there's another video on the selling and creation of Ecstacy. If you folks want I can find that one and post it too. I encourage all of you to take a look at this video and see what the effects of prescription drug abuse can be. I'm sure that not only will this be quite educational but eye-opening as well. Once again SSDP never condones drug use. So after watching this I hope the only ideas you start getting are those of drug regulation, drug taxation, and creation of rehabilitation facilities!


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This video reflects once again the amount of people we're putting in prisons.
In this video alone we see rooms full of drug users along with drug arrest after drug arrest. As shown in my last post and more to follow, our answer to the Drug War does not include prison use. Hopefully through more and more educational articles and videos on the importance of the drug war and trafficking we can show the harmful truth of the our failing drug policies.


Until next post,
Taylor (Kent State SSDP)

Monday, November 23, 2009

The Government and Medical Marijuana

Irvin Rosenfeld, a 56-year-old Floridian with a painful bone disease called multiple congenital cartilaginous exostoses is sent marijuana every month to help him live a pain free lifestyle. Not from his "dude", but from the U.S. Government.

Rosenfeld became a patient in the federal Investigational New Drug Program in 1982, and has received 300 joints every 25 days for the past 27 years, consuming about 10 to 12 per day, says NBCMiami. The marijuana is grown and delivered by the same government that ended support for medical marijuana in 1992.

Why do Irv Rosenfeld and the handful of others still on the government's INDP list get their medicine directly from the same entity that imprisons others for getting their medicine on the street? In one state, you may be a patient; in another state, a criminal. Medical marijuana should be available to all who need it, without worry of jail time.

Of course, NBCMiami only covered the story because the day it ran Irv was allowed to smoke his 115,000th joint legally. The article did a good job of inlcuding Irv's story in his own words, which by itself is a plight for the legalization of medical marijuana on a federal level. However, the rest of the article was filled with your run-of-the-mill pot references. When will the media start taking a real look at the pain and suffering of those who are not afforded the comfort of being able to take their medicine legally in their own home?

Friday, November 20, 2009

More smokers or more honesty?

With the American Medical Association recently rethinking their view on pot, we can see that the stigma behind the drug is changing. For those baby boomers that grew up in a more relaxed culture, hearing that their friends smoked was no shock. But what about in today's society?

According to newser.com, http://www.newser.com/story/74090/boomers-enjoy-new-whatever-tude-on-pot.html, "The number of marijuana smokers in the 50-59 age group has doubled over the past decade." The only questions is, have the number of smokers doubled or the amount that are willing to talk about their smoking habit? With medical marijuana being legal in 13 states, the first cafe recently opening, and the Feds promising to back off of the dispensaries, pot has taken on a new light in American culture. More and more people that are husbands, wives, mothers, fathers, employees, managers, etc., are coming out and saying that they smoke marijuana and lead a perfectly normal life.

The more marijuana is accepted into the American culture, the more people will realize that the drug is mostly harmless (aside from the smoking aspect). The AMA is calling for a review of the Schedule of marijuana. (Read more at: http://rawstory.com/2009/11/ama-review-pot-prohibition/) As it stands now, marijuana is a Schedule 1 drug. For those that are unaware, schedule 1 drugs are those that are thought to have no medicinal use. In this category as well: meth, heroin, ecstasy, LSD, and GHB, just to name a few. If marijuana were to be reviewed and rescheduled, as it rightfully should be, this would open all new doors for drug policy reform.

Do you think that marijuana will be reviewed? If so, do you think the scheduling will change? If they do move marijuana from a schedule 1, what do you think that will mean for drug policy?

-Thanks
Angelica Gagliardi
Vice President
Kent State SSDP

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

An Example Lies Across The Ocean!

Hey guys, Taylor here. A few months ago I remember running across an article from Economist.com. The title of the article, as you will see, is Treating, Not Punishing. A theme that is the backbone to my belief on the war on drugs.
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http://www.economist.com/world/europe/displaystory.cfm?story_id=14309861

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This article deals with new studies done in Portugal, a country that in 2001 decriminalized all mainstream drugs. Many believed that Portugal's decriminalization laws would only bring about vast amount of "drug-tourism" and higher rates of drug usage throughout the country. Yet, the studies show that this has not been the case and in fact the opposite has occurred.
Studies from a Libertarian American think-tank, the Cato Institute, have shown that there has been no evidence for such claims; Portugal has not become a relaxing tourist spot for drug users. The study also shows that drug usage rates of children and young adults have not risen. The only numbers that show any increase are those concerning rehabilitation and disease treatmeant. All in the favor of the Portuguese.
Please take a look at this eye-opening article. This article and facts in it only support my fight against the American Drug war. This article can show not only America, but the rest of the World, how to combat the Drug war. It is great to see a strategy that is none aggressive. A strategy that uses education and health as its main concern. This is a country that sees drug abusers as patients not criminals. This is how everyone should see them.

Until next post,
Taylor (Kent State SSDP)


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Cannabis Cafe opens in Portland Oregon

Taken from OregonLive.com-> http://www.oregonlive.com/portland/index.ssf/2009/11/cannibis_cafe_opens_in_a_haze.html

Cannabis Cafe opens for medical marijuana patients in Northeast Portland


Oregon opened another chapter in U.S. marijuana history when at 4:20 p.m. Friday, about three dozen people christened the nation's first cafe for licensed residents to sit down, sip coffee and smoke marijuana.

"Welcome to a place of our own," said Madeline Martinez, a leader in the state's medical marijuana movement and the leading force pushing to open the Cannabis Cafe in Portland. "Welcome to freedom."

Excited patrons spilled down the outside steps at 700 N.E. Dekum St. as the cafe prepared to open at the appointed hour -- "420" being slang for using marijuana. In line were military veterans, grandmothers, young workers, men and women, old and young, black, white and Latino.

Gordon Cederholm, 45, of Milwaukie has lived with HIV for 25 years and said he was skeptical about using marijuana as medicine when he got his Oregon card less than a year ago.

"At first, I thought: What does being a pothead have to do with it?'" he said. "I didn't know the benefits in marijuana. Now, I find that I'm a better person when I smoke."

Kris Koa, 57, a retired nurse from Gresham, rode the bus from home to see the cafe for herself. She has been using medical marijuana for fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis.

Torsten Kjellstrand/The Oregonian
Jars of donated pot line the shelves behind the bar at the Cannabis Cafe, waiting to be smoked by licensed users. Oregon law says medical marijuana may not be sold.
This cafe means I now have the freedom to take my own health into my own hands," she said. "This is just the most fabulous thing to happen."

The cafe, in the space that once featured Rumpspankers restaurant, looks like nearly every other coffeehouse in town, except that shiny silver Volcano vaporizers are plugged into outlets lining the tiled bar. Wi-Fi is available. Coffee, soft drinks, trays of Marsee Bakery pastries and sandwiches are also offered as ammunition against the inevitable attack of the munchies.

The only people permitted in the Cannabis Cafe are those licensed to smoke who also hold membership in the lobbying groupOregon NORML. Patrons will be charged $5 a day. They can bring their own or smoke donated marijuana. Oregon law says medical marijuana may not be sold.

Before the opening, Martinez unloaded a large box with a dozen jelly jars full of marijuana of various strains that had been donated to the cafe. She opened one jar and held it out for a sniff; the contents smelled sweet, even fruity.

"It's called Blueberry," Martinez said, smiling. "It's really good for pain."

The cafe had long been a dream of Martinez, executive director of Oregon's chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. But long-standing fears of federal arrest "kept us ostracized and turned us into criminals just for using our medicine."

Then last month, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that authorities would no longer prosecute licensed users in the 13 states with medical-marijuana programs. Oregon's 10-year-old program is the second in the nation, after California's.

Giving heart to smokers this week was the American Medical Association's change of position on marijuana: Having proclaimed for years that it had no medicinal value, the AMA instead said marijuana does have benefits that warrant further study.

In Oregon, more than 23,000 people hold medical-marijuana cards and another 14,000 are registered as caregivers or growers. The overwhelming majority of patients are treating chronic severe pain.

For about a year, Oregon NORML has hosted twice-monthly meetings of cardholders on the second floor of the Northeast Dekum Street building. Eric and Shelly Solomon, who ran the now-closed Rumpspankers, offered the downstairs restaurant space for the cafe.

After last week's announcement of the cafe's opening, the neighbors in the Woodlawn neighborhood weren't happy. At a crowded neighborhood association meeting, people complained, among other things, that they could smell smoke from the meetings. Martinez promised to install air filters.

Friday afternoon, patients made themselves comfortable on the soft furniture. "Budtenders" at the bar ground up small portions of marijuana for the vaporizers. A cafe volunteer went to the cafe's front door and opened it for a woman in a wheelchair.


-- Anne Saker


Is Ohio capable doing something like this?

Or how about passing the medical marijuana law?

Thursday, November 5, 2009

"I don't even know what drugs are"

As I have probably stated before, I babysit. My most long-term family consists of a 5-year-old red-headed little boy, a seven-year old girl that can slip into a 15-year-old mindset, and two wonderfully quirky and accepting parents. I love this family, and their kids I sometimes talk about as if they were my own. I fit in here because there is no judgment being made and whether or not I get drunk on the weekends is never a concern, as long as the little rascals are taken care of.

It was a typical Friday after-school routine: get kids off bus, walk kids up driveway, feed snack, talk about school, and so on. During the "talk about school" portion of the day, Lily pulls out a pretty red ribbon that flaps so beautifully in her hand. She shines it over my way and it reads "Drug free 24/7 365." Lily holds it proudly, then her pride-filled face transfers to a bit of confusion.

"I don't even know what drugs are," She states as she seemingly regrets being so prideful about something she didn't really understand. Then from the background I hear, "They are making you promise not to do drugs when you don't even know what they are?" This statement is coming from the bedroom of the most understanding and accepting mother out there. (Read her blog, and find out for yourself why I think so highly of her... chagrinandbearitall.blogspot.com)

This little exchange of words made me think even more about the drug education system in our schools. Being a future teacher, it bothers me that schools are letting children make these promises that they don't even realize they are making. A drug, according to the true definition is, "any substance that, when absorbed into the body of a living organism, alters normal bodily function." I am wondering what kind of promise the DARE program hopes to get out of 2nd grade children; that they will never drink coffee? eat too much sugar? take the medications their doctors prescribed them? What is it that DARE is looking for?

It is proven that the DARE program is not working and has no affect on whether or not a child is going to use drugs in the future, so why not present the facts? I am not saying that there are not drugs out there that are definitely scary and life-threatening, but instead of using scare tactics, why don't we have a little faith in the children of our nation and tell them the truth. "Just Say No" is not realistic and has proven this throughout the years. Good try Nancy, but the truth is, people are curious, and by not telling them the whole truth it makes them want to experience it and find out for themselves.

Students for Sensible Drug Policy (ssdp.org), takes a "Just Say Know" approach. Why don't we teach about the actual drug, what it does to your body, how much is too much, the addiction level, and so on and so forth. Why don't we get rid of what doesn't work and try something new. Worst case scenario, it'll turn out just like our current DARE program, unsuccessful.

-Angelica Gagliardi
Vice President Kent State SSDP
agagliar.blogspot.com

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Front-line: drug wars: thirty years of America's drug war | PBS Source: www.pbs.org

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/drugs/cron/

What is everyone's thoughts on the progress or lack of that the drug war has made?

What do you think the next 30 years will look like regarding the drug war?

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Stiletto Stoners

Welcome to "Let's Talk About Drugs"- a blog brought to you by Kent State Students For Sensible Drug Policy. This blog serves to educate the public about different aspects of drugs and drug policy. Next semester we are planning on giving monthly presentations for "Lets Talk About Drugs"on KSU's campus. This blog is an on going project. Please stay with us and share your thoughts and ideas!

Here is a video from stopthedrugwar.org about professional woman smoking pot. It was considered breaking news. Is it socially acceptable for women with careers to smoke marijuana?



Send me anything related and i'll post it up.
Send to : ghipolit@kent.edu
Keep it real.
-Gwen (Kent State SSDP Blog Director)