Deepak Chopra Joins Movement To End The W.O.D.
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Deepak Chopra Joins Movement To End The W.O.D.
Posted by CN Staff on November 29, 2012 at 17:07:28 PT
By Jag Davies
Source: AlterNet
USA -- Physician, bestselling author and global thought leader Deepak Chopra has joined the Honorary Board of the Drug Policy Alliance, the U.S.-based organization that leads the flourishing movement for drug policies grounded in science, compassion, health and human rights. The DPA Honorary Board (see below) includes prominent figures from both the left and the right who are renowned for their leadership in the fields of law, health, business, media and politics – from Richard Branson, Arianna Huffington, and Sting to former U.S. Secretary of State George P. Shultz, U.S. Secretary of Defense Frank Carlucci, and Chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve Paul Volcker.
Chopra is an Indian-American physician who has sold more than 20 million books worldwide, including 19 New York Times bestsellers. He is a former chief of staff at New England Memorial Hospital who went on to found the Chopra Foundation, the Chopra Center for Well-Being and the American Association of Ayurvedic Medicine. He currently serves as Senior Scientist at the Gallup Organization and as an Adjunct Professor of Executive Programs at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Chopra wrote passionately in the Huffington Post earlier this year about the moral dimensions of the war on drugs and mass incarceration: “When was the last time Congress or the states looked at prisons with a moral eye? America leads the world in the number of people incarcerated, more by percentage of population than in Stalin's gulag. A vast disproportion are black. A huge number are nonviolent drug offenders, often condemned to outrageous time behind bars thanks to draconian state and federal laws with mandatory sentencing. A recent New Yorker article that outlined the grim statistics of overcrowding and skyrocketing expense called our prison system America's moral shame.” Chopra emphasized the drug war’s vastly disparate effect on communities of color: “Then there is the plight of black America. Dry statistics speak of soaring unemployment, crime, and family breakdown. In the African American community, actual community is hard pressed to survive. Poverty is endemic. Seventy-five percent of black babies are born to single mothers. More young black males are in jail than in college. A hugely disproportionate number of black drug users and dealers are arrested and sent to jail compared to their white counterparts, even though actual drug usage is no higher in the black community.” Deepak’s passion and thoughtfulness in articulating the moral urgency of drug policy reform provides this burgeoning movement with an ally of enormous significance. Something that most people might not know about the drug policy reform movement is the broad range of support it enjoys from people all across the political and cultural spectrums. Its supporters run the gamut from social justice activists, public health officials, progressives, libertarians, and academics, to law enforcement, judges, conservatives, elected officials, and religious leaders, to active drug users, people in recovery, currently and formerly incarcerated people, and the loved ones of victims of HIV/AIDS, fatal drug overdoses, and prohibition-related violence. These people might not agree on much, but they all agree on one thing – that the war on drugs is doing far more harm than good. DPA Honorary Board Former Mayor Rocky Anderson Harry Belafonte Richard Branson Former Defense Secretary Frank Carlucci Deepak Chopra Congressman John Conyers, Jr. Walter Cronkite [1916-2009] Ram Dass Dr. Vincent Dole [1913-2006] Former President of Switzerland Ruth Dreifuss Former Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders U.S. District Court Judge Nancy Gertner Former Police Chief Penny Harrington Former President of the Czech Republic Václav Havel [1936-2011] Calvin Hill Arianna Huffington Former Governor Gary Johnson U.S. District Court Judge John Kane Former Attorney General Nicholas deB. Katzenbach [1922-2012] Former Police Chief Joseph McNamara Former Police Commissioner Patrick V. Murphy [1920-2011] Dr. Beny J. Primm Dennis Rivera Former Mayor Kurt Schmoke Dr. Charles Schuster [1930-2011] Alexander Shulgin Former Secretary of State George P. Shultz Russell Simmons Sting U.S. District Court Judge Robert Sweet Former Chairman of the Federal Reserve Paul Volcker Jag Davies is publications manager for the Drug Policy Alliance. Newshawk: AfterburnerSource: AlterNet (US)Author:  Jag DaviesPublished: November 29, 2012Copyright: 2012 Independent Media InstituteContact: letters Website: Justice Archives 
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help 

Comment #13 posted by Hope on December 01, 2012 at 11:07:04 PT
Storm Crow
You have done a lot of good, Storm Crow. A lot.Thank you.
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Comment #12 posted by FoM on December 01, 2012 at 05:22:23 PT
Storm Crow
That is wonderful. Keep up the good work you do. 
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Comment #11 posted by The GCW on November 30, 2012 at 23:03:09 PT
Storm Crow,
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Comment #10 posted by Storm Crow on November 30, 2012 at 22:05:56 PT
An example of the change!
I recently commented in the news in an article about a 7 year old leukemia victim getting medical cannabis. It had over 300 comments, so it was a fairly "hot topic".;_ylt=A2KJjalhmblQ3GMAuXbQtDMDThis was my comment-"Cannabinoids induce incomplete maturation of cultured human leukemia cells" (PubMed- 1987), "{Delta}9-Tetrahydrocannabinol-Induced Apoptosis in Jurkat Leukemia T Cells Is Regulated by Translocation of Bad to Mitochondria" (apoptosis = death, PubMed - 2006), "Enhancing the in vitro cytotoxic activity of Delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol in leukemic cells through a combinatorial approach" (PubMed - 2008) and "Marijuana compound could stop aggressive cancer metastasis" (YahooNews- 2012) are all available online. Once the medical facts about cannabis become known, the need for legalization becomes obvious!I got 51 "thumbs ups" (and no "thumbs down") for a single sentence, and the titles of 3 medical studies and a news article! I think shows an amazing change in attitude in the American public! They are beginning accept the concept of cannabis as a medicine! Those inconvenient medical facts keep popping up, much to the dismay of the prohibitionists!
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on November 30, 2012 at 13:41:11 PT
I hope we will see change faster now.
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on November 30, 2012 at 13:39:00 PT
Sinsemilla Jones
I don't look that far down the road. I am trying to enjoy the victory we got and don't want to think about 2016. A lot can happen as far as reform goes between now and then.
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Comment #7 posted by konagold on November 30, 2012 at 11:13:33 PT
OT : ATTN FOM Dude, pot could be legal everywhere soon.That's the sentiment expressed by advocates and experts in reaction to the recent votes in Washington and Colorado to legalize marijuana, which have re-energized the discussion about whether pot should be legalized once and for all in America."It's clear and it has been clear now for a number of years that we are at a tipping point when it comes to a majority of Americans' view toward the way we treat marijuana in this country," Paul Armentano, deputy director of the pot lobby group Norml, told ABC News."Whether you are looking at Gallup or Rasmussen (polls), you'll find more Americans are saying marijuana ought to be legalized and regulated in a manner similar to alcohol or tobacco rather than support the current policy," he said."I think it's only a matter of another two or three states following suit before the federal government realizes it doesn't have the mechanism in place to enforce prohibition, and they would most likely go ahead and leave it up to states," Armentano said.Lobbyists and pot proponents are jumping onto what may be pot's zeitgest moment, with bills to legalize marijuana already introduced in Maine and Rhode Island, discussion of possible bills in states including Massachusetts and Vermont, and talk of ballot initiatives in California and Oregon during the next major elections.The conversation has spread from legislative offices to major publications' editorial pages, as both the Washington Post and the Oregonian newspapers have written editorials recently endorsing pot legalization or decriminalization. The New York Daily News wrote on Monday that New York should say no to medical marijuana, but not necessarily reject legalized pot."That's the debate New York should have -- full legalization or nothing," the paper wrote.
What Do Tuesday's Elections Mean to Mexico? Watch Video
Colorado Governor Addresses Marijuana Law Watch Video
Marijuana, Gay Marriage Win in 2012 Election Results Watch VideoAnd a marijuana joint graced the cover of this week's New York Magazine where a feature story covered the thriving pot industry in Humboldt County, Calif.Now, Humboldt State University has launched the Institute for Interdisciplinary Marijuana Research, in Humboldt County, as part of the University of California system. The institute will try and answer questions about marijuana, including how the marijuana industry affects Humboldt County and the changing role of marijuana in American society."We can all see that nationally, public opinion has shifted," said Josh Mesiel, a sociology professor at the school and co-director of the institute.Meisel cites data showing that in 1969, 13 percent of Americans supported legalization of marijuana. In 2010, the number was nearly half of all Americans. Twenty states have modified their laws regarding pot consumption, whether focused on decriminalization or outright legalization, he said."I think people are recognizing that we need to learn more about what the potential impacts are of marijuana becoming part of the mainstream," Meisel said. "It's become part of the mainstream in term of public opinion."The sudden surge in discussions about marijuana could point toward a swift end to the prohibition on pot, according to Armentano, the legalize-pot lobbyist. He likens the movement's current status to the end of alcohol prohibition in America in the early 20th century, when the federal government decided to stop enforcing the ban on alcohol as states began to decide they would no longer prosecute people who consumed alcohol.There are also indications that the country is not ready to treat a drug like marijuana on the same level as alcohol and tobacco. In recent years, bills to legalize pot have rejected by voters in California and Oregon, and in New York and Hawaii bills were blocked by lawmakers.And many law enforcement groups are fighting it."We oppose it," said Jim Pasco, executive director of the Fraternal Order of Police, the nation's largest police union. "I think the law enforcement community is universally consistent in its opposition to legalizing pot, in the interest of public safety and public health."Pasco said his group is also against legalizing medical marijuana."There's no scientific or medical basis in lighting something and breathing it in. Further, you have no idea how it was handled, and it's bad for you. If you want medicine to be good for you, you get it in pill form," he said. Is The Country at a Tipping Point for Legalizing Marijuana?The federal government has yet to rule on how it will handle the new laws in Washington and Colorado. Growing, possessing, and buying marijuana is still against federal law, though experts doubt that the federal government has the capacity to enforce the laws in those states."The feds undoubtedly have the authority to shut down any institution or selling shop," explained Richard Collins, law professor at the University of Colorado, Boulder. "(But) that would leave in place the right to possess an ounce and the right to grow six plants, which I doubt the U.S. attorney has the capacity to deal with.""They don't have the manpower to do so, the resources to do so, and the public clearly would not be supportive of them doing so," Armentano said. "It think because these votes passed with such a solid majority, I don't think the political will in D.C. permits the federal government to do so. With that said, the federal government doesn't have a whole lot of options."
What Do Tuesday's Elections Mean to Mexico? Watch Video
Colorado Governor Addresses Marijuana Law Watch Video
Marijuana, Gay Marriage Win in 2012 Election Results Watch VideoCollins points out that many voters in Colorado voted to approve the legalization of marijuana because it would provide an extra revenue source for the state in the form of new tax dollars. That argument is a central point of lobbyists' pitch to convince lawmakers that the regulation of the marijuana industry would be beneficial to states."If they do (outlaw selling shops), the existing black market would continue and the state won't get tax money, and if you ask voters why they voted for this, they say 'because it should be taxed like booze.' So if the U.S. attorney does this he'll be a really unpopular guy," Collins said.Now, experts agree, all eyes are on the Department of Justice as it decides how to handle Washington and Colorado, and whether those states will pave the way for legal pot around the country."The significance is that (the votes in Washington and Colorado) are going to push up the timeline for the states and the federal government to resolve their differences," Meisel said. "I think many other states are going to be looking anxiously at this in terms of how it is resolved." 
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Comment #6 posted by Sinsemilla Jones on November 30, 2012 at 10:40:17 PT
OT, sort of. Been meaning to post this -
Hagman told the Times that after death he wanted his remains to be "spread over a field and have marijuana and wheat planted and harvest it in a couple of years and then have a big marijuana cake, enough for 200 to 300 people. People would eat a little of Larry."
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Comment #5 posted by Sinsemilla Jones on November 30, 2012 at 09:08:11 PT
I'm sure they're already in stuff like that.
Illegal pot just gives organized crime an easy steady stream of financing for their real crimes, as well as an easy way to get more people hooked on their real drugs.I think this is her way of announcing her 2016 run. "Big Pharma, you can depend on me! So, start writing those checks to my campaign."
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on November 30, 2012 at 08:23:36 PT
My 2 Cents
It isn't the answer to the violent cartels. They will just jump to something else like the Mafia did. Human trafficking etc.
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on November 30, 2012 at 08:20:37 PT
Sinsemilla Jones
I saw that and couldn't figure out who she was talking to then I saw it so I understand.
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Comment #2 posted by Sinsemilla Jones on November 30, 2012 at 07:43:56 PT
And in the other corner, HRC...
Clinton: Legalization not the answer to the drug war
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on November 29, 2012 at 17:08:19 PT
The Tide Really is Turning
I love good news.
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