Turning Over a New Leaf

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  Turning Over a New Leaf

Posted by CN Staff on October 17, 2016 at 14:55:19 PT
By Matthew Rozsa 
Source: Salon 

USA -- As the movement to legalize marijuana continues to gather steam, will consumers have to deal with a cabal of corporate giants along the lines of Big Tobacco? Is this just another excuse to ban the drug, or is there a real threat that “Big Marijuana” may rear its ugly head the near future?Fears of a corporate-driven Big Marijuana are being stoked many anti-marijuana groups, which have begun shifting their focus from scaring people away from the drug to claiming that large companies are going to try to sell it to children. “Joe Camel normalized cigarette smoking especially for young people. The Marlboro man normalized cigarettes for an entire generation. Marijuana wants to follow suit. Normalization is the cornerstone of that,” said Kevin Sabet, a former Obama administration drug policy adviser who now run Smart Approaches to Marijuana, in an interview with MSN.
Small marijuana growers in California are highlighting a different concern about the prospect of Big Marijuana. When opposing Proposition 64, which would legalize the drug in their state, they point out that big businesses will have an easier time managing the regulatory and environmental costs of cannabis farming, making it harder for smaller marijuana farms to effectively compete.At the same time, the tide is shifting in favor of legalization. Twenty-five states and the District of Columbia have already legalized marijuana in some form, and a Quinnipiac University poll in June found slightly more than half of Americans support legalizing the drug (54 percent). Although there are risks to smoking marijuana, including respiratory damage and weight gain due to increased appetite, the cultural stigma against the drug has largely dissipated in recent decades. If Big Marijuana does become a fixture in our economy, it will be because public opinion opened the door for it.Matthew Rozsa is a Ph.D. student in history at Lehigh University and a political columnist. His editorials have been published on Salon, The Good Men Project, Mic, MSNBC, and various college newspapers and blogs. For a full review of all his published work, visit (US Web) Author: Matthew RozsaPublished: October 17, 2016 Copyright: 2016 Salon Website: Contact: salon salonmagazine.comURL: -- Cannabis Archives 

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Comment #5 posted by Hope on October 18, 2016 at 16:46:21 PT
Another interesting fact for you to mull, Kevin...
This country's financial base was born in tobacco, hemp, and cotton. Tobacco first and foremost. Not that that makes it good to smoke tobacco. It's just true. That's the main reason for any "Big" tobacco sensibility. Because back in the day it was big... and important."Big tobacco", "Normalization".Dang, Kevin. You are just making up stuff, looks like. Stick with the facts and you still might be able to pass for a sane man and find some decent work after you have to give up this cannabis prohibition job.I wish you prohibitionists would try to focus on maybe West NIle Virus? Zika? Instead of just trying to make sure no one experiences any good from cannabis, which, obviously, you don't approve of. People have suffered enough because of people like you that believe it's good to punish people harshly for using an herb. For God's sake, Kevin, how about giving humanity a break for a change?
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Comment #4 posted by Hope on October 18, 2016 at 16:21:21 PT
That Kevinator the prohibitionist...
Cigarette smoking was "Normal" long before Joe Camel and the Marlboro man made the scene.Good grief, Kevin. Where have you been? Oh that's right, you weren't even born yet before Joe Camel and the Marlboro man. Maybe you should have done a little research... or asked someone born before you.Duh. That's so out in the maroon dominated field.
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Comment #2 posted by The GCW on October 17, 2016 at 15:33:06 PT

The different ways to stop prohibitionists.
On Colorado's ballet (mostly) politicians have put on Amendment 71, which attempts to change parts of the initiative process to among other things make it so petitions must reach a minimum 2% in every county & get 55% of the vote to pass.Had that been the case, Colorado may not have passed the election to RE-legalize the superplant.It's important to not let states with the initiative process lose any of their power.Here's a letter addressing that amendment:Pubdate: Fri, 14 Oct. 2016
Source: Summit Daily News (CO
Webpage: 71 doesn’t empower the peopleRe: “Colorado Amendment 71 tries to cut down on constitutional red tape,” Oct. 4.I disagree with (County Commissioner) Dan Gibb’s claim that Summit County voters “don’t have a say” regarding the initiative process. Further, stating Amendment 71 has bipartisan support neglects the fact that opposition to Amendment 71 also enjoys bipartisan support, but more importantly includes the private sector, which is the vast majority of voters, rather than a list of inconvenienced politicians.One of the clearest examples of potential harm Amendment 71 may cause comes from realizing it could have prevented Colorado voters from ending cannabis prohibition. Summit County and other rural mountain communities played an important part in that successful initiative process and we should continue having access to it, left unchanged, for when politicians fail citizens. Nationally, politicians either ignore this important issue or fight against it, frustrating the majority of citizens who want to end cannabis prohibition.Colorado’s initiative process is already sufficiently difficult. To make things worse, politicians also have resorted to devious measures to prevent the process from working. An example is in 1998 with Colorado’s attempted medical cannabis amendment. It should have been placed on the ballot, but Secretary of State Vicky Buckley said citizens did not have enough signatures. A lawsuit forced a recount, which she still said was short. All this occurred late and the election ballot contained the amendment question, but Buckley refused to count it, stating it did not have enough petition signatures. Then, Buckley died unexpectedly, and after her death, boxes of petition sheets were found in her office and a recount of all the signatures initiated by proponents proved the state made a mistake. A judge then ordered the medical marijuana question be placed on the ballot again on Nov. 7, 2000.Previously, it was known as Amendment 19, but when a Colorado judge placed it on the election ballot, it was labeled Amendment 20, and citizens across the great state of Colorado were asked to vote “4 -20.” And it passed.Another example to expose 71’s flaws is Florida, which voted overwhelmingly to allow sick citizens to use cannabis, yet their initiative failed because it required more than 50 percent of the vote.Ending cannabis prohibition through Colorado’s constitution also makes it difficult for prohibitionist politicians to sidestep voters, which they’ve tried to do. By extension, our successful ability to use the initiative process in Colorado is helping end cannabis prohibition throughout the country including states that do not have the initiative process.So, if Amendment 71 is not good for Colorado voters, who is it good for? Examples to help answer that question include how grass-roots efforts use the initiative process to do things such as label food products only to have large corporations spend huge sums of money to stop those efforts. Politicians may like these types of amendments due to their ability to gain endorsement money during future election campaigns from large corporations.Most citizens value a government of the people, by the people, for the people. Ending or watering down Colorado’s initiative process removes power from the people and puts it in the hands of politicians and corporations.Vote no on Amendment 71. When politicians take away every granule of sand from the beach, we are left with nothing.S.W.
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Comment #1 posted by The GCW on October 17, 2016 at 15:12:08 PT

Cannabis prohibitionists R harmful to Your health
Americans have (rightfully) lost respect for the lowly cannabis prohibitionist as they in fact have historically been shown to cause more harm than the plant cannabis itself.America has suffered enough due to the actions of discredited lies, half-truths and propaganda regarding the relatively safe God given plant.Caging responsible adults for using what God created and says is good on literally the very 1st page of the Bible is vulgar, anti-Christian and just plain wrong.
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