NORML's Weekly News Bulletin -- September 18, 2003

NORML's Weekly News Bulletin -- September 18, 2003
Posted by CN Staff on September 18, 2003 at 13:49:09 PT
Weekly Press Release
Source: NORML
MS Patients To Converge On Washington To Lobby For Medical Marijuana, Honor Cheryl MillerSeptember 18, 2003 - Washington, DC, USAWashington, DC: A delegation of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients from around the nation will converge on Washington, DC on September 22 and 23 to lobby for legal access to medicinal marijuana and pay tribute to Cheryl Miller - a longtime medicinal marijuana activist and MS patient who died from pneumonia and other MS-related complications on June 7, 2003.
In honor of Cheryl's dedication and struggle, NORML and several other drug law reform groups will be holding a two-day medical marijuana lobbying effort on Capitol Hill. More than 20 patients and their caregivers from at least 16 states will participate in the two day event, which will include: a candlelight vigil in front of the Supreme Court, a press conference on Capitol Hill, a meeting of patients with the Washington DC chapter of the Multiple Sclerosis Society, and a patient-lobby day to raise awareness in Congress of the need for medical marijuana and the passage of House Bill 2233, the "States' Rights to Medical Marijuana Act.""Throughout much of her life, Cheryl risked arrest and jail to use the only medication that alleviated her suffering," said her husband Jim Miller, who is helping coordinate the memorial project. "Cheryl chose to take this risk, though many other patients are simply forced to suffer. I hope that by bringing attention to the plight of my late wife Cheryl, I can hasten the day when marijuana will be made available so that others are no longer needlessly forced to suffer with pain or risk arrest."For more information: Please contact Kris Krane or Chris Mulligan of NORML at (202) 483-5500 or visit: Wisconsin Marijuana Activists To Travel To D.C. Voters Approve Initiative Making Marijuana Enforcement City's "Lowest Priority"September 18, 2003 - Seattle, WA, USASeattle, WA: Seattle voters overwhelmingly passed a citywide initiative this week minimizing the amount of time local police may spend enforcing marijuana possession laws.Nearly six out of ten voters backed the measure, known as Initiative 75, which requires the Seattle Police Department and the City Attorney's Office to make the "investigation, arrest and prosecution" of adults for pot possession the city's "lowest law enforcement priority." Sponsors of the initiative, the Sensible Seattle Coalition, maintain that the ordinance will save money and allow law enforcement to focus on more serious crimes.Under state law, possession of as little as one gram of marijuana is criminally punishable by 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.Similar marijuana "deprioritization" laws have been previously enacted in other metropolitan areas, including San Francisco and Oakland, California; Amherst, Mass.; Ann Arbor, Michigan; and Madison, Wisconsin, among other places.For more information:please contact either Keith Stroup or Paul Armentano of NORML at (202) 483-5500 or visit the Sensible Seattle website at: Initiative Won't Affect Marijuana Enforcement Wars: White House Lectures Seattle on Pot Voters Favor Measure on Marijuana Votes To Make Marijuana Low Priority Noted Actor Sentenced To Prison On Drug Paraphernalia ChargesSeptember 18, 2003 - Pittsburgh, PA, USAPittsburgh, PA: A federal judge has sentenced 65-year-old actor/comedian Tommy Chong to nine months in prison and fined him $20,000 for selling glass pipes on the Internet through his business, Nice Dreams Enterprises. Chong, one half of the legendary comedy duo Cheech & Chong, who recently had a recurring role on television's "That 70's Show" was one of 55 people indicted by the federal government in February for selling glass pipes commonly associated with marijuana smoking. Chong, who pleaded guilty in May to drug paraphernalia charges, is the first to be sentenced to federal prison. Two other defendants have received six months of house arrest, but no prison time.As part of his sentence, Chong also forfeited more than $100,000 in cash and merchandise seized in the February bust. Chong must also serve one year on probation after he's released from prison.NORML Executive Director Keith Stroup called Chong's sentence extreme, noting that the federal Justice Department likely singled Chong out because of the actor's high profile as a cultural icon among marijuana smokers. "At a time when our nation is on alert of a terror attack, it is preposterous that the Justice Department would waste limited federal law enforcement resources chasing after sellers of products such as pipes, roach clips and rolling papers, products which are legally sold at tobacco stores all across America," he said."Can anyone in America honestly say they feel safer today because Tommy Chong, a comedian and actor, has been sentenced to nine months in federal prison for selling glass pipes on the Internet? Of course not. These laws do nothing except make criminals out of otherwise law abiding businessmen."For more information, please contact Keith Stroup, of NORML at (202) 483-5500.To send a letter protesting the incarceration of Tommy Chong.Please visit: Chong Gets The Joint's Errant Hammer Cracks Down on Tommy Chong Tommy Chong Gets Nine Months NORML Foundation (DC)Published: September 18, 2003Copyright: 2003 NORML Contact: norml Website:'s Weekly News Bulletin -- September 11, 2003's Weekly News Bulletin -- September 3, 2003
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help

Post Comment