cannabisnews.com: Resolve Issues on Medical Pot





Resolve Issues on Medical Pot
Posted by CN Staff on March 06, 2005 at 07:55:50 PT
Editorial
Source: Ventura County Star
After receiving an inquiry from a man interested in opening a medical marijuana dispensary in Simi Valley, the City Council ordered a 45-day moratorium on such businesses. The moratorium, which can be extended, will give police and city officials time to study the request and gauge public opinion. That is a reasonable time frame given the unresolved legal issues regarding medicinal marijuana and the sensitivity of the issue.
We hope the City Council educates itself and the community on the issue, sets reasonable guidelines and then allows the dispensary to open. To date, 12 states have passed laws easing or eliminating punishment for use of marijuana with a doctor's permission. California voters passed a medicinal marijuana law -- Proposition 215 -- with 56 percent of the vote, in 1996. However, federal law still bans marijuana use for any reason, resulting in federal raids of dispensaries and arrests of owners and patients. The question in Simi Valley again highlights the need for the federal government to change its unreasonable stance against medicinal marijuana. It is an issue the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule on before June, in the case of Raich v. Ashcroft. Justices will decide whether California law or federal law should apply in the case of two sick California women -- one with an inoperable brain tumor and the other with a degenerative spine disease -- who use marijuana on the advice of their doctors. The justices' job would be easier if the federal government simply changed its law to reflect scientific reality. Evidence backing the medicinal benefit of marijuana includes a 1999 report from the Institute of Medicine at the prestigious National Academy of Sciences that concluded marijuana may be effective in relieving chronic pain and controlling nausea and vomiting in some people with cancer and other serious illnesses. The Ventura County Sheriff's Department follows state guidelines on the amount of marijuana a person with a doctor's permission may legally possess. That is 8 ounces or a half pound of processed marijuana; 12 immature plants or six mature plants. Simi Valley residents have been at the center of several controversies regarding medicinal marijuana since Proposition 215 was passed by California voters nine years ago. With its action Monday, the city of Simi Valley joins a growing list of California cities temporarily banning dispensaries because most cities have no guidelines for licensing them. Among the questions the Simi Valley City Council needs to answer are: How would the business receive the marijuana? Should the dispensary be restricted to professional office space? How many patients would it serve? What level of security should be required? What would be the allowable distance between the dispensary and schools, libraries, parks, churches? Would background checks on a dispensary owner be required? If marijuana can ease the pain of the seriously ill, it should be available in a controlled and safe environment, as are such drugs as cocaine and morphine -- an ideal voters in California and other states have overwhelmingly endorsed at the ballot box. It is time for sick people to be treated with compassion, not like criminals. To that end, we urge a quick resolution to the legal conflict. Allow people to use medicinal marijuana with a doctor's permission, without fear of federal prosecution; and provide a legal and safe way for them to obtain it. Note: Simi has chance to clear air.Source: Ventura County Star (CA)Published: March 6, 2005Copyright: 2005 The E.W. Scripps Co.Contact: letters insidevc.comWebsite: http://www.staronline.com/Related Articles & Web Site:Angel Raich v. Ashcroft Newshttp://freedomtoexhale.com/raich.htmCouncil Blocks Marijuana Dispensaryhttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread20321.shtmlI Really Consider Cannabis My Miraclehttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread20078.shtmlCannabisNews Medical Marijuana Archiveshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/list/medical.shtml
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Comment #25 posted by FoM on March 06, 2005 at 20:00:15 PT
More on Premiere of Reefer Madness
Reefer Madness will Premiere on Showtime Saturday, April 16 at 8pm ET/PT! Check out the Reefer Madness Stage Musical at: http://www.reefermadness.org 
 
 
 
 
   Synopsis:Inspired by the notorious 1936 anti-marijuana propaganda film, Showtime's first movie musical REEFER MADNESS is a tongue-in-cheek raucous musical comedy about clean-cut kids who fall into a twisted, hilarious downward spiral of reefer, sex and mayhem. One of the most complicated musicals filmed for television, the movie contains sixteen musical sequences and several complex large-scale dance numbers. And every member of the cast was proud to display their real singing voice. This screen version of the award-winning stage musical stars Kristen Bell ("Veronica Mars"), Christian Campbell, Neve Campbell ("Party of Five"), Tony Award-winner Alan Cumming ("Cabaret"), Ana Gasteyer ("Saturday Night Live"), John Kassir, Amy Spanger, Robert Torti and Steven Weber ("Wings"). Garnering strong critical acclaim for its off-Broadway run, the original Los Angeles production of REEFER MADNESS also took theatergoers by storm, sweeping the theatrical awards from the various L.A. critics groups and becoming one of the longest-running shows in Los Angeles history. The film REEFER MADNESS reunites the stage version's creative team. Directed by Andy Fickman from the screenplay by Kevin Murphy & Dan Studney based on their musical stage play, the three men also serve as the film's executive producers. REEFER MADNESS will screen as part of the Sundance Film Festival's Premieres category. To showcase the diversity of contemporary cinema, this section of the festival includes a selection of the latest works from established U.S. and international directors as well as world premieres of highly anticipated films. REEFER MADNESS will premiere on Showtime in April 2005. 
 
 
 
How the Madness Began:The original 1936 Reefer Madness film was so exaggerated and horribly acted that it eventually became a kind of cult classic. Executive producer/writer/lyricist Kevin Murphy refers to it as "the Rosetta Stone, the standard by which all other silly midnight cult movies are judged, with the notable exception of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, which is the granddaddy of them all. "Although the original film, which was called Tell Your Children, was made by a church group, it was later transformed by a guy named Dwain Esper, who at the time, was a very notorious maestro of exploitation films. He gave it a sexier title, cut in some salacious images of Mae rolling up her stockings very, very slowly, girls skinny-dipping and so on. By pretending that it was actually about something very high-minded and moralistic, it actually allowed people to get their kinky thrills. "Of course, they had all their facts wrong, so it became sort of a hysterical and overblown piece. One puff in the film leads to manic energy, going insane, raping and killing with mad abandon. The reality is that you get a little sleepy, laugh a lot and maybe eat a great deal of food." In 1997, writing partners Murphy and Dan Studney, who had met while studying at Drew University in Madison, New Jersey, were driving from Oakland to Los Angeles and listening to Frank Zappa's Joe's Garage, when they heard a line about Catholic school girls smoking reefer behind the rectory. "So I started picturing it in my head," Studney recalls. "Frank Zappa's concept of a musical and then it just hit me. I turned to Kevin and said 'What about doing Reefer Madness as a musical?'" By the time the creative duo reached Los Angeles, they had already written the first song. Upon completion of the script, they approached award-winning director Andy Fickman who accepted the project with great enthusiasm. "I was a big fan of the original movie, it always made me laugh," Fickman explains. "Then I listened to Dan and Kevin warbling away on the demo track, which didn't made me laugh, it made me cry. But the music was great and I thought, 'God, if real singers were singing that.' And then when I read the script, I fell in love with it." The play opened in a small equity waiver theatre in Los Angeles for what the producers thought might be a two-week run. Instead it played to packed houses for over a year and a half, captivating audiences and critics alike, winning 20 theater awards and breaking records. Many devoted fans came back time and again, dressed in costumes and shouting out the lines. The popular production was optioned for off-Broadway by the New York-based Nederlander organization, but its long-awaited New York run turned out to be a brief one because it opened just four days after 9/11. However, the play had caught the attention of Robert Greenblatt, Showtime Networks' President of Entertainment, who later offered Studney and Murphy the opportunity to turn the musical into an original Showtime feature film. They were both astounded and delighted. Fickman articulates the principal aim behind making the modern movie version of Reefer Madness, which is now structured as a film-within-a-film. "We decided to pull the camera back one step further from the original film and show why it was made in the first place. It was made to scare good citizens and to distort the truth in their presentation. Had Reefer Madness been a thoughtful examination of the trials and tribulations of hemp and marijuana, it would have been one thing, but they made the most explicit shock film that they could, all based on what can only be viewed as a lot of silliness." Thankfully, it also makes for good satire, as Fickman points out. "This is where the comedy lies - in a heightened version of the truth. Social satire is always a fun way to go. Since Reefer Madness is set in the 1930's, we have a very stylized period of gangsters, dames, thugs and broads; a musical - each production number more fantastic than the last - and of course, a classic love story of boy meets girl, falls in love, then loses girl." 
 
 http://www.sho.com/site/reefermadness/home.do
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Comment #24 posted by FoM on March 06, 2005 at 19:36:09 PT
Heads Up: Now on Showtime
If you have Direct TV it is free this weekend and we just found out! Reefer Madness Grass Roots is on now on Channel 540!
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Comment #23 posted by aztoker420 on March 06, 2005 at 17:41:34 PT:
Words? 
Wolfgang -I know it can be difficult to find words for how you feel regarding this. Let me see if I can help (another poem)Lights out Drug Reform Radio, That S__t UpLights out Legalization, Turn that S__t upLights out Cannabis News Power, Turn that S__t upLights out Power to our CULTURE!When I get frustrated, I turn to art for help. 
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Comment #22 posted by FoM on March 06, 2005 at 17:20:10 PT
WolfgangWylde
My opinion of what is going on is so deep that I don't think I can put it in words. I do know where the blame should go though.
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Comment #21 posted by Hope on March 06, 2005 at 17:17:09 PT
Patrick
That's op-ed quality stuff...to me. If they ignore it they aren't really in the journalism business.
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Comment #20 posted by FoM on March 06, 2005 at 17:16:53 PT
Patrick
That's very good. You make a lot of sense to me.
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Comment #19 posted by Patrick on March 06, 2005 at 17:09:56 PT
Hope & FoM
Here is the edited version I just emailed to the Ventura County Star and the mayor of Simi ValleyÖRegarding the editorial on medicinal marijuana published in the Ventura County Star here are some likely answersÖ Among the questions the Simi Valley City Council needs to answer are: 
1. How would the business receive the marijuana? Assuming that the crop is not grown on site at the dispensary whatís wrong with a delivery van? The same type of vehicle that delivers cigarettes and alcohol would work just fine. Since medical marijuana is ďlegalĒ in the state of California there shouldnít be any need for an armored car?2. Should the dispensary be restricted to professional office space? Now thatís a very good question!
Economically, I think it would be advantageous to grow, harvest, package and deliver from one location. You could have a retail dispensary on site for those that live locally and you could also use UPS, FedEx, or DHL for delivery so long as it is not the US Postal Service for obvious reasons. I think a better solution would involve growing centers where people like Ed Rosenthal can be free to produce the best strains. Current distribution systems will work with cannabis just as they do Codeine and blood pressure medication. We just allow existing pharmacies to dispense with the obvious prescription of a physician. Itís not rocket science or anything new!3. How many patients would it serve?How many are there? Like any other need in society, itís called supply and demand. Itís very obvious there is a demand in spite of the legal status of cannabis. Simi Valley City Council was elected into office to serve the city and I hope these answers help you to serve your community instead of finding ways to further prohibit the use of medical cannabis.4. What level of security should be required? The same level of security that exists for prescription drugs, cigarettes, and alcohol should work well for starters. You could modify guidelines as the need arises but the idea is that putting cannabis in the legal & regulated market will prevent violence on the streets over its illicit marketing. Ending alcohol prohibition proved this sound strategy long ago.5. What would be the allowable distance between the dispensary and schools, libraries, parks, churches? What are the guidelines for existing pharmacies from these places? My pharmacy happens to be right across the street from a large school. Why would picking up several ounces of medical cannabis be any different than say my uncle picking up his thyroid medication? Now, if you are referring to grow operations as opposed to a simple dispensary or pharmacy, then I agree we should regulate those facilities to industrial or agriculturally zoned areas.6. Would background checks on a dispensary owner be required? If the initial idea is to accept cannabis back into the medical pharmacopeias then I would assume the same background check that is required of any pharmacist would suffice? I think the question you wanted to ask is what kind of background checks would be required of the growers and suppliers? Once again, I think existing guidelines can be used here. The same background checks that we require of the brewers of beer and distilled spirits or the back ground checks on our tobacco cigarette and cigar makers. Personally, I donít know what those background requirements are? But suffice it to say I trust that they would work about the same when applied to a cannabis farm as they do commercial micro-breweries or cigarette factories.So in conclusion, I say to the Simi Valley City Council here are the answers that you seek. Next question.CC: Paul Miller, Mayor of Simi Valley http://www.ci.simi-valley.ca.us/BIO.PMN2.pdf
Email address: pmiller simivalley.orgCC: Jim Wilcox, Editorial Assistant Simi Valley Ventura County Star email him from their website http://staff.venturacountystar.com/index.cfm?action=prepare_email&STAFF_ID=373
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Comment #18 posted by Hope on March 06, 2005 at 16:59:37 PT
Wolfgang....coffee shop situation
It makes me sad that the relatively free Netherlanders are having their freedoms, even incrementally, diminished.
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Comment #17 posted by WolfgangWylde on March 06, 2005 at 16:40:50 PT
Opinions anyone?
AMSTERDAM FALLS OUT OF LOVE WITH COFFEE SHOPS AS LIBERAL STANCE ON DRUGS BEGINS TO CRUMBLE For the past 18 years Michael Veling and his staff have been serving up such delights as White Widow and Blueberry in his wood-panelled coffee shop in the heart of Amsterdam. For as little as 805 ( UKP 3.50 ) visitors can smoke a cannabis joint in Cafe De Kuil and sip a beer while listening to music ranging from Frank Zappa to Mozart. The 50-year-old bar owner and political activist said: "My main concern is to make sure there is a good mix of people at my coffee shop and that they get the best quality grass and marijuana." But the Dutch coffee shop system is under threat. According to one of the country's leading drug specialists and a government adviser, cannabis coffee shops and cafe-bars will be extinct within five years. 
Amsterdam Falls Out Of Love With Coffee Shops
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Comment #16 posted by Hope on March 06, 2005 at 16:08:18 PT
Oh my gosh!
Not only did I laugh out loud, I shrieked softly, and stomped my feet!!!That is wonderful!http://www.useless-knowledge.com/1234/mar/article114.html
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Comment #15 posted by Shishaldin on March 06, 2005 at 15:51:49 PT
Hilarious response to The Case Against Cannabis
so funny...thanks for the link, siege!http://www.useless-knowledge.com/1234/mar/article114.html
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Comment #14 posted by siege on March 06, 2005 at 14:47:09 PT
have fun 
The Case Against CannabisBy Brian Michael Barbeito
Mar. 6, 2005 
 I feel sick and tired of hearing this statement over and over again. "So and so has tried everything and only marijuana works." There are other such statements that abound in abundance; "Its safer than drinking.http://www.useless-knowledge.com/1234/mar/article104.htmlto tell a story.
http://www.useless-knowledge.com/submit.html
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Comment #13 posted by FoM on March 06, 2005 at 12:21:47 PT
Related Article
Y-S Saying No To Pot Clubs March 06, 2005 By John Dickey, Appeal-Democrat Source: Appeal-Democrat A state referendum may have legalized medical marijuana, but Yuba City is just saying no to pot clubs that would distribute it. http://www.cannabisnews.com/news/thread20330.shtml
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Comment #12 posted by Hope on March 06, 2005 at 12:05:49 PT
Excerpt from referenced column in last post
Mirror: What parallels do you see with the prohibition era and modern-day attitudes to drugs, particularly marijuana? Hamilton: When I first started working on this book I was primarily interested in chasing the fascinating and bizarre story of B.C.'s prohibition from 1917 to 1921. The huge anti-liquor conventions of 1915-17, the endless referenda and plebiscites, the hysterical name-calling and moralizing, the farcical soldiers' vote in Europe, and the widespread corruption and bootlegging after prohibition was finally imposed in the fall of 1917. As I worked on this project I was continually struck by the similar patterns shown in various prohibitions then and now. In fact, I was unable to unearth a single case of a successful prohibition over the long term. These laws drive the problem underground and out of sight, but they solve little. Banning alcohol and drugs does not remove them from the market. It doesn't seem to matter whether the substance is addictive or merely a social custom. Crystal meth, cocaine, heroine, marijuana, booze, designer drugs, model airplane glue, tobacco, tea and coffee have all had their times of prohibition with the same effect. Artificial scarcity of a popular drug will inevitably lead to higher prices, a black market and astonishing amounts of illicit cash. This, in turn, attracts the criminal element, corrupts police, judges and law makers, and generates contempt for the rule of law. In extreme cases it will lead to savage turf wars between dealers, and an epidemic of thefts as users struggle to pay for the high cost of drugs. 
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Comment #11 posted by Hope on March 06, 2005 at 12:02:40 PT
Affirming news
http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v05/n381/a03.html?397
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Comment #10 posted by Hope on March 06, 2005 at 11:48:16 PT
aztoker420
CannabisNews, as you can see, wreaks havoc on format. I can see your poem though. It's nice. I like it.
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Comment #9 posted by siege on March 06, 2005 at 11:48:10 PT
I D cards
What is the BS about I D cards you all ready have one it is called a Drivers License all they have to do is put a box on the back is this so hard.
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Comment #8 posted by aztoker420 on March 06, 2005 at 11:18:31 PT
A poem.
I can't explain all the feelings that the reform movement is making me feel. My heart's in overdrive and cannabis news is behind the steering wheel. Touching you. Touching me. Touching you cuz you're touch and move!I believe in thing called love. Just listen to the rythm of my heart! There's a chance we can make it now. I wont quit until the sun goes down. I believe in a thing called looooooove! OOOooooooooooooo. GUITAR!
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Comment #7 posted by Hope on March 06, 2005 at 11:11:31 PT
Patrick
Send it...for publication in the paper at the very least. I assure you, it's good.
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on March 06, 2005 at 11:06:26 PT
Patrick
You should send it to them.
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Comment #5 posted by Patrick on March 06, 2005 at 10:58:38 PT
Thanks FoM & Hope.
I donít live in Simi Valley so I canít go in person to their city council meetings. I guess sending my reply to Simi Valley City Council would make sense if the City Council asked these questions or is the author of this editorial piece simply posing these questions to the city council to be answered? Not sure which it is? If itís the author at Ventura County Star, should I send it there?If you all think it is that good Iíll be happy to send it to both of them. Perhaps another reader from Simi Valley will read it and feel the same way? By all means feel free to copy and paste and make posters out of it if need be.
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on March 06, 2005 at 10:15:15 PT
Patrick
I agree with Hope! Very good!
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Comment #3 posted by Hope on March 06, 2005 at 10:08:42 PT
Patrick...comment #1
Outstanding assessment!If you can't appear there yourself, you should send what you wrote to someone who can read it to the city council.
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on March 06, 2005 at 10:04:58 PT
Just My Thoughts
So much depends on Angel's case. I know that all the cities that are saying no to Medicinal Cannabis Clubs are concerned because of how the Feds have been with raids. Soon we will have a direction one way or the other. I'm hoping for wisdom to rule. 
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Comment #1 posted by Patrick on March 06, 2005 at 09:48:26 PT
Some likely answersÖ
 Among the questions the Simi Valley City Council needs to answer are: How would the business receive the marijuana? Assuming that the crop is not grown on site at the dispensary whatís wrong with a delivery van? The same type of vehicle that delivers cigarettes and alcohol would work just fine. Since medical marijuana is ďlegalĒ in the state of California there shouldnít be any need for an armored car?Should the dispensary be restricted to professional office space? Now thatís a very good question!
Economically, I think it would be advantageous to grow, harvest, package and deliver from one location. You could have a retail dispensary on site for those that live locally and you could also use UPS, FedEx, or DHL for delivery so long as it is not the US Postal Service for obvious reasons. I think a better solution would involve growing centers where people like Ed Rosenthal can be free to produce the best strains. Current distribution systems will work with cannabis just as they do Codeine and blood pressure medication. We just allow existing pharmacies to dispense with the obvious prescription of a physician. Itís not rocket science or anything new!How many patients would it serve? How many are there? Like any other need in society, itís called supply and demand. Itís very obvious there is a demand in spite of the legal status of cannabis. Simi Valley City Council you were elected into office to serve your city, so serve, instead of finding ways to prohibit and rule.What level of security should be required? The same level of security that exists for prescription drugs, cigarettes, and alcohol should work well for starters. We could modify guidelines as the need arises but the idea is that putting cannabis in the legal & regulated market will prevent violence on the streets over it. Ending alcohol prohibition proved this strategy long ago.What would be the allowable distance between the dispensary and schools, libraries, parks, churches? What are the guidelines for pharmacies from these places? My pharmacy happens to be right across the street from a large school. Why would picking up several ounces of cannabis be any different than say my uncle picking up his thyroid medication? Now, if you are referring to grow operations as opposed to a simple dispensary or pharmacy, then sure regulate those facilities to industrial or agriculturally zoned areas.Would background checks on a dispensary owner be required? If the initial idea is to accept cannabis back into the medical pharmacopeias then I would assume the same background check that is required of any pharmacist would suffice? I think the question you wanted to ask is what kind of background checks would be required of the growers and suppliers? Once again I think existing guidelines can be used here. The same background checks that we require of the brewers of beer and distilled spirits or our tobacco cigarette and cigar makers. Personally, I donít know what those background requirements are? But suffice it to say I trust that they would work about the same when applied to a cannabis farm as they do commercial micro-breweries or cigarette factories.So in conclusion, I say to the Simi Valley City Council here are the answers that you seek. Next.
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