Harris Introduces Law to Federally Legalize MJ
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Harris Introduces Law to Federally Legalize MJ
Posted by CN Staff on July 25, 2019 at 09:15:42 PT
By EJ Dickson
Source: Rolling Stone
Washington, D.C. -- On Tuesday, Senator and Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris announced that she is teaming up with House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler to co-sponsor the MORE Act of 2019, a bill that would decriminalize marijuana on the federal level and expunge low-level marijuana possession convictions. If enacted, the bill would also provide grants to members of communities of color, in an attempt to reverse decades of damage that cannabis criminalization has done to those communities.
“Times have changed — marijuana should not be a crime,” Sen. Harris said in a statement sent to Rolling Stone. “We need to start regulating marijuana, and expunge marijuana convictions from the records of millions of Americans so they can get on with their lives. As marijuana becomes legal across the country, we must make sure everyone — especially communities of color that have been disproportionately impacted by the War on Drugs — has a real opportunity to participate in this growing industry.”Currently, 33 states have legalized medicinal marijuana, while 11 states plus D.C. have made it legal for people over the age of 18 to buy marijuana for recreational purposes. The MORE Act would not only decriminalize marijuana on the federal level, it would also authorize a 5% federal sales tax on marijuana to create a trust fund for three grant programs, which would provide services to the “individuals most adversely impacted by the War on Drugs,” as well as loans for small businesses in the cannabis industry owned by people of color.The bill is unique in part because of the sales tax to support the trust fund, thus taking the onus off American taxpayers and increasing the likelihood for bipartisan support when it’s introduced into the house, says Justin Strekal, political director for NORML, calling it “the most comprehensive and workable legislation that has ever been introduced.” While it’s unique for being the first bill introduced by a House Judiciary chair in support of marijuana reform, Nadler has a record of supporting such legislation: one of the first votes he ever cast as a freshman member of the state Assembly in New York in 1977 was a state decriminalization bill. “He has made marijuana policy one of his priorities,” says Strekal, who adds that given Nadler’s support, the legislation could “move swiftly” after Congress returns from its August recess.The bill is also notable for the fact that it is explicitly designed to benefit communities of color, which have been adversely impacted by stringent drug laws requiring the incarceration of low-level offenders. Not only does the bill call for expungement of low-level marijuana-related offenses, but it also helps to ensure that entrepreneurs of color will be represented in the emerging cannabis industry.Harris’s stance on marijuana reform has significantly evolved since she first took the California attorney general office in 2010. Although she supported medical marijuana use, she voted against a bill that would have regulated and tax recreational marijuana in California. “Spending two decades in court rooms, Harris believes that drug selling harms communities,” Harris’ campaign manager Brian Brokaw said at the time. While campaigning for reelection in 2014, when asked by a local news reporter whether she supported her opponent’s stance on legalizing marijuana in California, she laughed and said, “He’s entitled to his opinion.”Yet her position has since changed, with Harris adding her name in 2018 to Senator Corey Booker’s Marijuana Justice Act, which would make marijuana legal on the federal level. In her new book, The Truths We Hold, she cemented that stance, writing, “We need to legalize marijuana and regulate it,” and advocating for the expungement of non-violent offenders’ marijuana-related offenses so “they can get on with their lives.” When asked about the evolution of her views, Strekal says, “We welcome the evolving stance of policy makers of all ideologies into supporting reform efforts.”KamalaHarris: We must not only legalize and regulate marijuana, but we need to expunge nonviolent marijuana-related offenses from the records of the millions who have been arrested or incarcerated.Harris is not the only 2020 Democratic candidate to advocate for marijuana decriminalization: Nearly all of the other major candidates, with the exception of Joe Biden, have adopted a similar stance toward marijuana decriminalization. In a crowded presidential race, her support of marijuana reform could be viewed simply as a result of political savvy, but Strekal says her staff and team were “genuinely receptive” to suggestions made by the drug policy community and the criminal justice reform community at large. Her support of this legislation, says Strekal, “underscores that good policy is analogous to good politics.”Source: Rolling Stone (US)Author:  EJ DicksonPublished: July 24, 2019Copyright: 2019 Straight Arrow Publishers Company, L.P.Contact: letters rollingstone.comWebsite:  -- Cannabis Archives 
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Comment #16 posted by Hope on August 23, 2019 at 21:20:10 PT
It seems kind of like it might have anyway! Tilted... I mean.There were so many people there. I was pregnant as I recall and with a toddler... and not there either. But it was a big deal and quite the news story even down here in Texas. It was an amazing event.
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Comment #15 posted by FoM on August 23, 2019 at 16:03:51 PT
It was great to celebrate Woodstock one more time 50 years later even though I wasn't there. Stephen Stills said if everyone was at Woodstock that said they were there the world would have tilted. LOL!
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Comment #14 posted by Hope on August 23, 2019 at 14:50:36 PT
I really enjoyed the celebration, from a distance, of this year's anniversary. Woodstock 1969 was an amazing event. Never anything quite like it before or since.
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Comment #13 posted by FoM on August 18, 2019 at 10:18:51 PT
Thank you for sharing your experience. I wasn't there and had a 2 year old son but watched anything I could find on TV about Woodstock. The nightly news (30 minutes) really covered it in that short time frame. Being a Catholic raised young person the whole new way of looking at a really Spiritual Gathering that just happened and was meant to happen was mesmerizing to me. It tugged at my heart and hoped someday I would be able to experience something like that and we both did. We were on the red cross team at a big concert called Ohio River Jam. It rained the whole day. We helped people who took too many drugs and took stretchers through the mud to the tent where the doctor was. Peter Frampton was the Main draw for the concert but J Geils, Black Oak Arkansas and Ambrosia were there and really good too. It had about 10,000 people and a day we will never forget. All the people were kind just partying hard. They wanted to buy our red cross badges so they could go back stage to be with the bands and we laughed.
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Comment #12 posted by afterburner on August 18, 2019 at 09:47:21 PT
FoM, Thanks for the Memories
I was not at Woodstock myself, but was there in spirit. My wife and I, dressed in psychedelic attire, were married 50 years ago yesterday in an outdoor ceremony at a public park in Toronto. Although years ago my wife has moved off this Earthly plain and on to the Communion with the Creator, I was enjoying the Spirit of Woodstock and memories of our happy times together all week as I worked.The Peace and Love vibration of the San Francisco artists documented on one of CNN's Sixties episodes, the last thing I watched before sleep last night, showed well how the psychedelic experience was prized and shared by the artists and musicians who embraced it as a better more hopeful future for the planet, and how governments of the day were threatened and reacted with brute force. 
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Comment #11 posted by FoM on August 18, 2019 at 07:34:28 PT
A Fantastic Interview With Arlo Guthrie
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on August 18, 2019 at 06:50:17 PT
You Can Still Sense The Love
'You Can Still Sense The Love': Baby Boomers Revel at Woodstock 50 Years OnBy Gabriella BorterBETHEL, N.Y. (Reuters) - Baby boomers dressed in tie-dye, rolling wheelchairs and chasing a memory of peace and love flocked to Bethel, New York, for the weekend to mark the 50th anniversary of Woodstock, the music festival that defined 1960s counterculture.Thousands of flower-crowned visitors made the journey to the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, which now owns the original festival site, to hear some of the same musicians including Arlo Guthrie, attend a planned Saturday concert by Santana, and feel the spirit of community that the 1969 festival produced.“Even though I’m seeing the site 50 years later, I feel like I’m there at the first concert,” said Peter Hadley, 63, who arrived on Thursday. “Everybody greets us, talks to us. It’s the love that started back in ‘69 and it’s present here, now.”Woodstock, which was held at Max Yasgur’s dairy farm in upstate New York from Aug. 15-18 and featured about 30 acts, became a logistical nightmare when more than 400,000 people showed up, causing traffic gridlock for miles.This weekend, in stark contrast to 1969, attendees found metal detectors, indoor plumbing and abundant food vendors at the Bethel Woods Center, which is hosting several concerts to mark the anniversary.But those making the return trip said they had been unfazed by the chaos and unsanitary conditions in 1969, and instead remembered the kindness of locals, law enforcement and other concert-goers who offered food and medical aid.“Everything that could go wrong went wrong. But everything went right,” said Duke Devlin, 77, who hitchhiked to Woodstock from Texas and has lived near the festival venue ever since. “We were bombarded with bliss.”Arlene Seymour, 69, arrived for the weekend wearing the same tie-dye shirt she bought on her way to the 1969 concert. She fondly recalled sharing food with people she had just met and sleeping in the trunk of a stranger’s car to avoid the rain.“It just wouldn’t happen like that today,” she said. “Because of the environment in the world, people would be worried to have it so loose.”The anniversary attracted not just baby boomers. Younger people, dressed in throwback bell-bottoms and fringes, came to experience the atmosphere they missed in 1969.Down the road from Bethel, a more informal reunion with music was taking place to mark the weekend in a style reminiscent of 50 years ago.“You can still sense the love,” said Michelle Lecuyer, a 53-year-old sales director from New Hampshire, who described standing on the field where rock legends like Jimi Hendrix, Joe Cocker and Janis Joplin performed as experiencing “a slice of heaven.”Previous Woodstock anniversaries have not fostered such harmony. People threw mud at performers at a rain-drenched Woodstock ‘94 in Saugerties, New York. A fire broke out at the 30th reunion in Rome, New York, and the event devolved into violence.Last month, original Woodstock producer Michael Lang’s plans for a 50th anniversary festival fell through when the organizers failed to secure a venue and headliners including Jay-Z and Miley Cyrus dropped out.But the gray-haired crowds gathered in Bethel were determined to have peace. Ignoring the rain on Thursday and Friday and the omens of Woodstock reunions past, they held hands in a circle around a peace sign on the lawn, smoked blunts while singing along to Arlo Guthrie, and swayed to the rhythm of their generation.Reporting by Gabriella Borter; editing by Jill Serjeant and Richard ChangURL: Reuters 2019
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on August 18, 2019 at 06:38:19 PT
Arlo Guthrie Performing with The Boston Pops
I couldn't help but smile when I saw Arlo Guthrie perform Coming into Los Angeles at the 4th of July Celebration with The Boston Pops this summer. We have arrived! Love it!
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on August 18, 2019 at 05:36:50 PT
In The Spirit of Woodstock
We have all helped bring change to our issue and now it is time for us to remember these are things that will save us from self destruction. Love you all!Humble and Kind: Along:
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Comment #7 posted by Hope on August 14, 2019 at 00:00:48 PT
Afterburner, FoM... all you c-newsers...
There has always been a lot of genuine love and caring here. I love you guys so much!Lately, I've mentioned several times to different people about a good admonition FoM always had for those of us who posted here. Say what you need to, but don't word your anger or rage in such a way as to incite someone that was a bit on the edge anyway, over the edge. Never incite the weaker among us to do something wrong or foolish. Be careful with how you say stuff... you never know who is listening and if your words might be misunderstood and lend to a tragedy. We always wanted our victory to be peaceful and gotten peacefully and righteously. And that's the way it's happened. 
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Comment #6 posted by afterburner on August 13, 2019 at 07:22:53 PT
Hope #3
Hope, I enjoyed reading your rant (confession and promise). I had to read it in two sittings as I too was interrupted by other people and responsibilities. I found it half-read on my cellphone this morning."I desire Mercy, not Sacrifice." says the lord of creation. I've been thinking a lot about that verse and its meaning. In response to criticism by the Pharisees for eating with sinners, Jesus said, "Those who are well have no need for a physician but those who are sick.... For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance." Matthew 9: 9-13We are in good company in accepting his mercy and striving to show the same to others with whom we disagree. Love is all around us woven into the very Creation.
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on August 13, 2019 at 05:50:46 PT
Everyday when I turn on the news I see how bad things are getting. No one will stand up to Trump and it is getting down right scary. We have to hope and pray we can return to some form of sanity or I pity the younger generation. Rant on!
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Comment #4 posted by Hope on August 12, 2019 at 19:12:52 PT
Gah! I'm sorry I couldn't proofread, friends.
I was in a real hurry and had people trying to get me away from the keyboard. I absolutely did not have time to proofread and if I'd left it for hours on the computer until I got back... it would have been gone. So, I posted it anyway.In fact... when I got back after several hours... the computer wasn't even in the same room as when I left the house. Someone else (grandchildren and even great grandchildren are here) was using it while I was gone. So, in spite of all that, maybe, if you were interested at all you could get the gist of what I was trying to communicate. Sorry for the hurry and the mess.
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Comment #3 posted by Hope on August 12, 2019 at 10:23:03 PT
Loonies among us. (a rant)
I don't really like Trump. I've never thought him interesting and certainly not admirable... but Candice Keller seems to have lost her grip on her balloon. She may not like those things she mentioned, but to say they are the cause of mass killings is just insane. It's like those people that believe God sends storms and horror to punish people for what other people, including the totally innocent, percieve to be as "Sins". No.... he didn't let a storm kill a kid because of the sins of the father... or the neighbor. My Lord! Oh my gosh! Not my God! h
Why do the innocent suffer and die. I don't know but I don't think God... even my loving God, thinks death is that big a deal. He knows it is drastic on our side of the view... but maybe not his so much. He just sees you move to a different plane in existence... but I do, certainly, think he hears our pleas and fears about death and other disasters and will give us a safe passage... often. I've seen it. Often.My God is so into Grace and Mercy. He is Love. He holds my hand. He guides me. Often out of what I got myself into. He protects me from the hardship and evil of the world amazingly well. I've HAD to walk right through the middle of striking lightning for a quarter of a mile. I was horrified... but the way I saw and see it... I made it through it by Grace! Amazing Grace! I could compile a very thick book just filled with the instances of miraculous Grace I've seen in my life time.The same with the garbage people spout about how "We"... as a nation... kicked God out of our schools. What? You can't kick God out of anywhere or keep him out of anywhere. It's impossible. Everything, every molecule of everything exists in and through him. I won't say my God is male... but 'he' is easy and right for me and sounds better to me personally than 'it' and there is even a new testament verse about male and female being the same to God. My ego doesn't require that I call him she though when I speak of him. Neither does captilizing him or he. My God is humble and doesn't really need that either. You can honor him that way if you wish... but I don't always like having to captilize things... and I think he's not bothered about it."We live and breathe and have our being in him." He does hold everything that is together... in my book. He is everything... even those danged snakes and crrocodiles. And nobody can stop anyone from praying... anywhere anytime. That makes me furious when people say you can't pray in ceratin places... Bull. If your God can't hear your thoughts, or know what you are feeling... your God isn't exactly "In" you or anything like that. Rules and other people can ask you not to do a public display and force others to participate. That's not exactly criminal. Even our New Testament, even the Lord looks askance at that public praying behavior. As I understand it, he or it... or whatever you percieve him as, isn't a fan of displays of personal piety and wordy, rehearsed prayers. 'Don't be like the Pharisees... standing on corners and praying long and loud prayers' and 'sewing borders on the hems of their clothes' to make themselves seem some sort of super holy and pious. Running their mouth... or lips... or keyboard isn't necessarily about heart feelings. "They worship me with their lips... but their hearts are far from me."The anger I feel at people like Candice Keller isn't good. I am 'quick to anger' when I see things like she has said. As Christians we are asked not to be 'quick to anger'. I have a problem with that. Big time. I'm quick to anger like a danged striking snake. It's awful and I am not happpy about it. But I need to control myself and not let that anger turn to hatred and I'm always working on that quick reaction I tend to have. Personally, my quick reaction usually amounts to birds flying... both birds! and two word expletives, starting with f and y, before I even have time to think rationally. So... I have to work on that. Not being any faster at it... but not doing it.
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on August 10, 2019 at 05:19:34 PT
I agree. Ohio is where I live but so many people and politicians are living in the 50s practically. I was hoping we would becoming a more open minded state but it is still a right leaning state. I don't know how anyone can think Trump is a good president but they love him. Makes me feel sick to my stomach.
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Comment #1 posted by Hope on August 09, 2019 at 13:15:42 PT
Off topic but related
Oh my gosh, FoM! there's a real doozy of a rep in your neck of the woods! This is even more astounding to me than people that blame firearms for these lunatic doings. It's crazy people being murderous. It's no one or no thing responsible for these dastardly deeds but the human's fault that spewed hatred on unsuspecting victims. It's the people that did it! It's not my fault for being an advocate of rights and liberty... nor yours, nor anyones, but the being that did the act. This article is so revolting... but I thought it needed to be noticed. Lawmaker Blames Mass Shootings on Open Borders, ‘Homosexual Marriage,’ Marijuana
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