Community Divided on Marijuana Issue
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Community Divided on Marijuana Issue
Posted by CN Staff on April 08, 2009 at 05:22:46 PT
By Mike North
Source: Orion
California -- A recent proposal out of San Francisco to legalize and tax the sale of marijuana has raised questions about the future of the substance in California.Marijuana has come back into the spotlight recently with San Francisco Assemblyman Tom Ammiano's Feb. 23 proposal to legalize the sale of marijuana, because the tax from the sales could help balance the state budget, he said.
If passed, this proposal would make marijuana available to adults 21 and older for any type of use, not just medical, according to Ammiano's Assembly Bill 390.Ammiano has served San Francisco for several years, advocating progressive issues, such as universal healthcare, domestic partnerships and immigrant housing. His plan to legalize marijuana has once again raised some eyebrows.But Quintin Mecke, communications director for Ammiano, said legalizing marijuana would improve public safety by treating it much like alcohol.Dale Gieringer, vice-chair of The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, is one individual who thinks California is moving toward a population that wants less restriction of controlled substances.NORML, a California-based group, has co-sponsored the medical marijuana initiative and is also a co-sponsor of Ammiano's bill.Gieringer thinks the legalization of marijuana would be helpful to the economy, but would be far from fixing it altogether, he said."This country has deeper economic issues than that; marijuana would be helpful to the economy, but you do have to put in some perspective," he said. "We estimate that the revenues from the Ammiano bill would be over a billion dollars for the state."The faltering economy has made Californians rethink their stances about marijuana, Gieringer said."Does it make sense, with a bad economy, to be spending all this money in a really wasteful and unsuccessful attempt to stop marijuana use when we could be raising money from it?" Gieringer said. Where It All Started  In 1996, Proposition 215 passed, allowing patients with certain medical conditions to use marijuana. It was called the Compassionate Use Act and would later be complemented by Senate Bill 420 in 2004, which defines guidelines for medical marijuana use allowed in Proposition 215.Gieringer thinks that with Ammiano's proposal and the legalization of medical marijuana in 1996, Californians want a government that is less restrictive on substances."The government is the last thing to move in that direction," Gieringer said. "They have a tremendous vested interest to proving that they are protecting the public by making anything that is slightly unhealthy a crime."Gieringer said it may take an initiative to completely legalize marijuana, but he is proud his organization has helped legalize the use of medical marijuana. Inconsistent Policy  Although legal in the state of California, medical marijuana is not allowed by the federal government, causing confusion and uncertainty for a lot of people, including Jeff Thomas, chief of clinical medicine at Chico State's Student Health Center."It seems like it's a really inconsistent policy," Thomas said.Thomas has mixed feelings about medical marijuana, he said. It can provide symptom relief, but the drug also releases toxic compounds when smoked, similar to tobacco."I think there are certain conditions where medical marijuana is helpful," Thomas said.Chronic wasting disease, a side effect of cancer and radiation treatment that nausea and vomiting, is an example of when marijuana can be beneficial, Thomas said.Thomas understands the benefits in terminal cases, but when medical marijuana evaluation companies use back pain and headaches as reasons to use marijuana, "you're really kind of getting on thin ice," Thomas said.Advertisements for medical marijuana evaluations are found in different Chico newspapers, such as The Orion and the Chico News & Review.One advertisement uses the slogan, "not just for illness, but for wellness," and offers confidential evaluations for symptoms, such as chronic pain, cancer, migraines "and many more." A Police Officer's View   Officer Bill Dawson of the Chico Police Department has been on the force for more than 21 years and sees a lot of issues with medical marijuana use in Chico, even though he voted to legalize it."There is no control right now," Dawson said. "Anybody and their uncle can grow it."Dawson has seen a significant increase in crime when it comes to medical and recreational marijuana use in Chico over the past 10 years, especially throughout the student population, he said. College students have even been killed over it."I would say because we have more of a party-school atmosphere, there are a lot of issues with medical marijuana," Dawson said. "A lot of students are naive."The department has dealt with crimes that stem from people who grow medical marijuana - mostly home invasions and robberies."It's a very dangerous thing," Dawson said.Theft resulting from people growing and storing medical marijuana in their residences has caused specific guidelines to be put on the Butte County District Attorney Web site, These guidelines include labeling all marijuana packages and gardens with a copy of the user's recommendation, and reporting any robbery to law enforcement.Because he is a police officer, Dawson is still seen as an enemy by marijuana consumers who have come up to the front door of the police department, smoking marijuana with their recommendation cards to taunt officers, he said.The current drug laws, a good growing climate and the young population all contribute the marijuana abuse in Chico, Dawson said. The issue is not one that is going to go away soon, either.Although Dawson sees medical marijuana as a problem in a school such as Chico State, not all students support the laws. Community Perspectives   Jeremy Ballard, a 26-year-old senior from Lincoln, doesn't like people using marijuana, no matter what health conditions they have, he said."I don't want a bunch of hippies smoking marijuana," Ballard said. "Aren't there painkillers for that?"Ballard, who describes himself as conservative, thinks medical marijuana has alternative motives that many don't know about, he said. But the issue is not divided between conservatives and liberals.On the other hand, Rick Saideh, manager of The Dungeon, a smoke shop on 132 Broadway St., supports medical marijuana and sees benefits that would help ordinary people, he said. Stress relief from home life and financial situations are some reasons to turn to marijuana."Stress relief - it's really important in life," Saideh said.The Dungeon and the Natural Care for Wellness, a health-service business, both support medical marijuana and each share one possible reason for supporting it: They both profit from the smoking of marijuana.The Dungeon has more than 100 pipes, bongs and other marijuana-smoking paraphernalia on display in the back room of its shop which is guarded only by plastic chains hanging in front of it and an "18 and over" sign outside. The pipes and bongs sold at the Dungeon range in price from $20 to more than $500 for upper-end models.Saideh, a dark-haired, middle-aged man, said that although the shop is located near the Chico State campus, most of their customers are not students, but rather older adults."My main target is 30 and up," he said.Saideh's support of medical marijuana does come with an air of caution to anyone who may be looking to abuse it. Negatives, such as body damage over extended periods of use, can occur.Source: Orion, The (California State Chico, CA Edu)Author: Mike MurphyPublished: April 8, 2009Copyright: 2009 The OrionWebsite: opinioneditor orion-online.netURL: -- Cannabis Archives 
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Comment #24 posted by afterburner on April 09, 2009 at 07:54:43 PT
It Seems those Who Think Deepest about our Issue..
are the most uneasy (and often silent) about the Changes happening today. There is great opportunity for progress but also not-so-great entrenchment of vested interests and their desperate attempts to maintain their power and control over us peasants.The false-flag use of "safety," to continue cannabis prohibition and to undermine our civil rights under the mis-named Patriot Act, is still going strong in the attempt to overcontrol the food supply for the benefit of corporate agribusiness interests:Our Crazy Health World: Roizen and Oz Recommend Irradiated Food, Psych Docs Push Amphetamine Drugs for Weight Loss. 
Tuesday, April 07, 2009 by: Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor.
Key concepts: Food, Doctors and Health, Turmeric, Neem Declared "Hazardous" in Thailand After Chemical Companies Try to Protect Pesticide Profits. 
Tuesday, April 07, 2009 by: David Gutierrez, staff writer.
Key concepts: Neem, Thailand and Turmeric 875 Food Safety Modernization Act of 2009 ( Community Q&A - Q&A on H.R. 875 Food Safety Modernization Act of 2009 Organic Farming - The Petition Site H.R. 875 Controlling our Food Supply - The Petition Site End of Organic Farming and Wholesome Seeds - The Petition Site the other hand, true scientists still toil to help actually solve the problems created by over 100 years of out-of-control industrialization:Broccoli Sprouts Fight Cancer-Causing H. Pylori. 
Wednesday, April 08, 2009 by: Sherry Baker, Health Sciences Editor.
See all articles by this author.
Email this author.
Key concepts: Sprouts, Broccoli and Broccoli sprouts Can Save the World From Global Warming While Producing Biofuel. 
Tuesday, April 07, 2009 by: David Gutierrez, staff writer.
Key concepts: Algae, Global warming and Carbon dioxide ego destruction or ego transcendence, that is the question.
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Comment #23 posted by FoM on April 09, 2009 at 05:46:49 PT
Had Enough
Peter Frampton brings back so many memories. We got to be back stage with him and other bands years ago. We were there to help people who took too many drugs and needed to be taken over to the Doctor's tent. J Geils, Black Oak Arkansas, Ambrosia and others I can't remember right now. What a day it was to see them and eat with them that wonderful but rainy concert day back in the 70s.He still looks good but I loved is hair back in the 70s. It was beautiful! LOL!
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Comment #22 posted by Hope on April 08, 2009 at 23:21:04 PT
Thank you, Had Enough.
I'll watch that video tomorrow. It's too late, or early, for me to wait for it right now.It's good to know that there are some people, like yourself, that can at least "Imagine" with me, such a good thing, as, at the very least, if we can't "Love one another", maybe we could manage, with a little effort, not giving so much grief to one another.
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Comment #21 posted by The GCW on April 08, 2009 at 22:30:57 PT
It is an eye-opener that Bible-bangers is one group that often attacks cannabis.I find Bible-bangers usually are uneducated about the issue.They often haven't considered the issue closely.They are a group worth educating and are often easy to educate.*Why support cannabis prohibition, when it is so anti-Christian?*Ask them if they realize they support putting humans in a cage for using what God says He created and is good on the 1st page of the Bible...???Jesus Christ taught and expects Us to love one another; how can a Christian love someone and cage them for using what God says is good on page 1?So many Christians don't realize they are enabling caging humans for using a God createcd plant and when they realize they are responsible for caging humans over such they think more clearly about the issue and sometimes change their minds about it quickly.A lot of different groups support cannabis prohibition which haven't given the issue proper consideration.Educating Bible-bangers, is a worthy cause that will greatly yield results for the movement.Educating that group alone could make the difference toward the goal of Re-legalization.Re-legalizing cannabis is part of a good and credible mission from God for God.For Christians to take part in the process of Re-legalization of cannabis would help persuade more people to accept Chrisitanity too.At present, Christian opposition to cannabis shuns people from accepting christianity.Cannabis prohibition after all is the work of evil; the devil.
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Comment #20 posted by vincent on April 08, 2009 at 20:55:30 PT:
conservatives vs liberals
The article states that the Marijuana issue "is not divided between Liberals and Conservatives". Frankly, I don't agree. The previous sentence stated that Jeremy Ballard, who opposes Pot use is a 26-year-old Conservative. I have always seen it that way--Liberals are generally tolerant of Marijuana use and Conservatives, especially Bible-bangers, are against it. We used to call it the Generation Gap. The folks who grew up listening to Tommy Dorsey and Glen Miller 
generally hated reefer, and the people who grew up listening to Rock and Roll, or in my case Disco (Donna Summer is my baby!), liked reefer.
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Comment #19 posted by Had Enough on April 08, 2009 at 19:08:49 PT
Hope Re: #17
“”If people would just quit making an occupation out of giving other people trouble and grief... we wouldn't have to worry about all this. Some of that very unnecessary grief giving... has to do with cannabis prohibition. People need to change and grow into not... as I said, not making an occupation out of giving others grief.””I think about that too…Such a simple thing to do…that’s all it would take…what would be so hard about that???Imagine that…But Nooo; these mongers have got to keep their act going. It’s a shame…that some minds…can be such a terrible thing…************Do You Feel Like We Do [Extrait] for Ringo Star on drums
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Comment #18 posted by Had Enough on April 08, 2009 at 16:18:22 PT
Welcome home…. :)…And it is sure good to see you.************Free the Weed…Clean the streets…Equal with Lettuce and Tomatoes…Free Kannabosm for all… :)…
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Comment #17 posted by FoM on April 08, 2009 at 15:05:30 PT
I understand your husband's concern. We live in a fragile world. Cannabis reform is important but it won't fix things that could happen to us as a country. What happens when people in other countries run out of drinkable water? A war would happen because the basic instinct of survival would kick in.  We have a lot of good quality land here in the states. Land that has good water.
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Comment #16 posted by Hope on April 08, 2009 at 14:43:05 PT
My husband has been worrying about all this
big time, for quite a while.He thinks we should keep the possible future need for horses and land to garden on in mind and wants to store non hybrid vegetable seeds.If people would just quit making an occupation out of giving other people trouble and grief... we wouldn't have to worry about all this.Some of that very unnecessary grief giving... has to do with cannabis prohibition.People need to change and grow into not... as I said, not making an occupation out of giving others grief.Imagine that.
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Comment #15 posted by FoM on April 08, 2009 at 13:53:39 PT
I would miss electricity if it went down. We had an outage a week or so ago. It was close to dinner time so I made soup on the woodstove. Campbell's soup I mean. That soup tasted better to us then when cooked on the range. I know that isn't true but having a hot meal even though it was only soup when we don't have electricity made us smile. We have well water and that would go out but we have a running spring on a road near here where people gather water all the time. Time to get a couple horses again too! LOL! 
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Comment #14 posted by Hope on April 08, 2009 at 13:46:43 PT
As a natural born worrier... I often find myself contemplating that possibility, especially in the last few years.We're so dependent on it. We'd be in a world of trouble without it. We wouldn't have electricity to pump water or gas, either. We'd be in such a mess.It would be wonderful to have a generator and some stored fuel for it. Fuel doesn't store indefinitely though. All the computer geniuses that we have in this country ought to be all over protecting this system... if not for love of mankind and their country... for love of their computers, because they have to have electricity of some sort to keep being a part of it all.
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Comment #13 posted by FoM on April 08, 2009 at 13:15:30 PT
Something Good
We have been running up almost 30% from the same time last year so people are reading what we say. Education is vital to productive change.
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Comment #12 posted by FoM on April 08, 2009 at 13:01:03 PT
I don't think you are one of those angry scary folks. I get angry but I just don't say anything except to my poor dear husband! LOL!More on the Grid problem. It's smart to know what could cause us grief in the future.***What if Russia or China Cut Off Your Electricity?Cybersleuths Reportedly Have Gotten onto U.S. Electric Grid; What Would Your Day Be Like?April 8, 2009 URL:
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Comment #11 posted by Hope on April 08, 2009 at 12:24:45 PT
"I ignore angry scary folks"
Me, too, which means I have to ignore my own self sometimes.I also like to put some distance between myself and those "angry scary folks"... but it's hard to do when they are me!Aaargh. Yes, for me, I've been quiet lately. Be glad.
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on April 08, 2009 at 12:09:13 PT
OT: Spies Penetrate Electrical Grid: Report
This doesn't surprise me at all. I would be worried if I couldn't make it without electricity for a couple of weeks or longer if the grid goes down. I guess a generator will be something we will have to get as soon as we can afford one.URL:
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Comment #9 posted by Hope on April 08, 2009 at 12:08:04 PT
So good to see you posting, Museman!
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on April 08, 2009 at 11:02:29 PT
First of all it is great to see you. I agree this battle is one big tough one. Obama will try but there is so much hate coming his way it sort of blows my mind. I saw what they said Abolish Money. I think we are in a strange and changing time. I think soon we will have a one world money system. I told an old friend if you believe anything from what we learned together in Church years ago our time could be short but we need to try to deflect it as much as possible. He looked at me with wide eyes and said he agreed. I have faith in Obama because he hasn't let me down yet but he is only a man and he can only do so much. The angry conservatives are trying to make him to be the anti christ. I wish they could find good reasons to not like him rather the freaking people out but that is what they do best.Fear is a control mechanism so I ignore angry scary folks.
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Comment #7 posted by museman on April 08, 2009 at 10:36:54 PT
There oughta be a law
Well here is the dilemna;I can't leave, because I am bonded to friendly intelligent folks here who know the diff between facts, statistics, truth, and opinion. I read the posts and feel like all is well, but then i read something that just leaps out at me, piques my interest in clarification of truth and facts- but if I post, using my normal modus operandi, attempting to clarify and/or explain- somebody is going to take it the wrong way, and even (in one case) try to get me busted.So its a real dilemna.But here goes;'republicans and democrats' may be slightly seperated by the liberal vs conservative attitudes of their voting constituents, but if you really step back and look at the whole picture, the difference is hardly worth mentioning.They all labor under the illusion and allusion to an invented state of affairs referred to over and over (put on the plate with much repetition by our former, un-elected pres) -the "Rule of Law"Lets 'make a law' against republicans because they were foolish enough to reveal their real colors while the democrats managed to look good in comparison. Lets make a law against other 'drug users' because they 'aren't like us,' and their disease is an undermining aspect of our culture that we don't want to deal with -so lets get more cops, more lawyers, more judges, more prisons, more laws, which will generate more money for the real rulers whose democrats and republicans kiss their assets on a daily basis.Law is an invention of the rulers to keep the people in line. When we allow, comnpromise, and capitulate with that ancient forced-upon-us error we only perpetuate their false power and rule.Oh yes, we do have 'law' but it isn't a set for 'rule' but a guideline for better living.There's some simple guidelines (sometimes referred to as the 'commandments',) that most people -not on the status-quo course of denial of reality and propagation of invisible emperors clothing- find easy to understand, even if they have issue with the moral (and incorrect) interpretation of the church, and the powers that be."Law" as practiced by modern culture is nothing but a sophisticated, clever avoidance of normal, natural human responsibilities, trumped up with a millennia of false morality plays designed to "confuse even the elect""Law" is a device by which the ruling faction mantains their rule, and all who serve that false idol and invented power are destined for a fall, and little else.Am I impressed by Obama? Yes, but at the same time red flags are and alarms are going off all over the place. I just fail to see how even the best of intentioned man could overcome the incredible corruption present in every layer of the system that uses the 'rule of law' as an excuse for everything from genocide to torture, and for systematic destruction of the most illuminated 'legal document' ever composed; The U.S. Constitution.I heard Hillary going on about 'the rule of law' the other day, and I swear i saw bush, and his 'base' laughing with delight.And is everybody gone brain dead while watching the government sell our heritage, real-estate, and future to China, while bailing out the rich (with token effort made for the 'good slaves' who stayed within the proscribed boundaries of the status-quo while they supported the fat-cats and their limo lifestyles)? Apparently.While the G-20 was in London, the protestors chanted "Abolish money!" over and over again. Is anyone laboring under the illusion that they were talking about credit as a replacement?There oughta be a law.And though I'd like to credit 'pot smokers' with inventing the PC, I'm very sorry (not really) to reveal the truth and fact that the PC, the mouse, the Graphic User Interface (GUI -Windows) was invented in the 60's by a group of people -predominantly led by mr. Douglas Engelbar who, with his fellow researchers engaged in psychedelic think tanks (before LSD was made illegal). Yes they smoked herb as well, but sorry, it was LSD that gave us the PC, the discovery of DNA, and probably a lot more that hasn't been admitted or revealed as yet.You see my dilemna?FREE CANNABIS FOREVER (and of course egqual with tomatoes)
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Comment #6 posted by Had Enough on April 08, 2009 at 10:12:53 PT
knightshadeYou are very welcome.Here is the other link…Maybe you can put them on your webpage…************Free the Weed – Clean the StreetI like that…Let's Roll...
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Comment #5 posted by knightshade on April 08, 2009 at 09:25:16 PT:
Had Enough
thanks for the link. i was actually planning on contacting PUMM soon to see if i could contribute to the 'war effort.' we need 700k signatures... thats a LOT.florida isnt talked about much as far as cannabis but the situation is similar to the SW as far as the black market stuffing cartel pockets, but here its the south americans and cubans and some caribbean islanders. and of course the long-established american gangs.FREE THE WEED, CLEAN THE STREET 
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Comment #4 posted by quartermaster on April 08, 2009 at 09:01:21 PT:
it is an issue between the redneck republicans and the other 70+ % of the US and most of the free world. i dont know of any real democrats that actually believe we should carry on the illegal law that the GOV passed without voter approval. BAN the republican terrorist party, throw out all cannabis laws. and go after the pill and crank addicts. pills kill many as it is the # 2 cause of injury death in the US, behind cars but ahead of guns.remember pot smokers invented the PC not some redneck dumb dumb
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Comment #3 posted by Had Enough on April 08, 2009 at 08:09:26 PT
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Comment #2 posted by Had Enough on April 08, 2009 at 08:06:22 PT
“”Jeremy Ballard, a 26-year-old senior from Lincoln, doesn't like people using marijuana, no matter what health conditions they have, he said. "I don't want a bunch of hippies smoking marijuana," Ballard said. "Aren't there painkillers for that?"”Now there is an objective viewpoint…from a 26 year old senior…
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Comment #1 posted by knightshade on April 08, 2009 at 07:59:59 PT:
i probably have 'body damage' from all those 'toxic compounds' that were released from all that marijuana i smoked!id better get to a doctor RIGHT NOW and hope there are still prescriptions for xanex and oxycontin available!:-/why does it always seem like our opponents dont have any validity to their arguments and we can back ours up with countless research and experience?'bunch of hippies!' 
Herb is the Word
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