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Shutting Down Marijuana Dispensaries Increases Crime Rate

The Weed Blog - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 15:02

Shutting Down of Marijuana Dispensaries Increases Crime Rate   A History of Marijuana There has long been a link between marijuana and crime rates. Because there was always such a high demand and it is a drug with proven health benefits, marijuana has always the most popular illegal substance. Marijuana was banned in 1937 despite [...]

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German Medical Cannabis Expert and Hero Starts Hunger Strike

Weed News - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 15:00
Germany has made great strides improving its cannabis laws in recent years, but there is still so much work to be done, as too many patients are still without safe access to a safe medicine. There...

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Los Angeles' new cannabis czar for 'new era' is longtime legalization activist

Cannabist - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 14:20
An active campaigner to legalize recreational cannabis in California will head the agency tasked with regulating the Los Angeles marijuana industry.

Mississippi uprooting 4-acre marijuana farm

Cannabist - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 13:36
Mississippi officials are uprooting what they're calling the largest outdoor marijuana farm they've seen since the 1980s.

Super Troopers 2 Releasing on 4/20

The Joint Blog - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 09:30
Super Troopers 2, the IndieGoGo funded follow-up the cult classic Super Troopers, will be releasing on April 20 (A.K.A. 4/20), the unofficial though much-celebrated cannabis holiday.

The original Super Troopers released in 2001, and although it received mixed reviews and had a far from impressive run at the box office (grossing less than $20 million in the U.S.), it quickly became a cult hit, and remains popular to this day. There’s no better indication of the film’s following than the fact that those behind it were able to raise over $4.6 million on IndieGoGo, a crowd-sourcing website, for a follow-up. This was over twice the original goal.

According to Steven Lemme, co-founder of Broken Lizard, the group behind Super Troopers, the sequel will be released in the “springtime and there’s a very obvious date, which happens to fall on a Friday this year.” It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that Lemme is talking about April 20, 2018, which falls on a Friday (the day new movies are typically released).

Lemme says Super Troopers 2 has been “testing better than any movie we’ve tested,” and “came out fantastic.”

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CN ON: A Tale of Two Shootings

MAP - Cannabis - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 18 Aug 2017 - One of the Trudeau government's stated policy goals for ending marijuana prohibition is to divert the profits reaped by gangsters toward legitimate shareholders. But an investigation by Greg McArthur and Molly Hayes offers a glimpse into the insidious nature of organized crime, finding that criminal groups easily exploited loopholes in the federal government's old medical-marijuana licensing regimes In the late afternoon of March 14 in the Toronto suburb of Woodbridge, a masked gunman jumped out of the passenger side of a black Jeep Cherokee, darted across a snow-dusted parking lot and unleashed a flurry of bullets into a black BMW. Thirty seconds later, he was back in the car, leaving Saverio Serrano - the son of a notorious Canadian Mafia figure and cocaine importer - wounded, and Mr. Serrano's 28-year-old girlfriend dead.

No Charges For Officers Over 11-Minute Public Roadside Vaginal Search ‘For Marijuana’

Toke Signals - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 02:46

Prosecutors in Houston, Texas, have dropped criminal charges against two Harris County Sheriff’s deputies who conducted a public, roadside strip-search of a 21-year-old African American woman. The search of Charnesia Corley was called “rape by cop” by her attorney, reports Democracy Now!  Video of the June 2015 traffic stop, released on Monday, shows the deputies roughly […]

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Berlin Hosts Another Great Hemp Parade

Weed News - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 01:54
Despite a little cold and rainy weather, a great crowd turned out this year for the 21st annual Berlin Hanfparade (or “Hemp Parade”) last Saturday, August 12th. According to Michael...

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How to Get Rid of Pests and Parasites on Marijuana Plants

The Joint Blog - Fri, 08/18/2017 - 00:03

By Dianna Benjamin, WikiLeaf.com

Mother nature is beautiful.  Except she’s also kind of gross and at times, highly inconvenient.  And since cannabis is a plant, it is subject to pests and parasites.  Whether marijuana is grown indoors or outside, it cannot escape the circle of life, and apparently, humans aren’t the only ones interested in consuming cannabis.  Here is a list of the most common parasitic threats and what to do about them.

Cannabis Pests and Parasites Spider Mites

These guys are probably the most common of all pests and can cause the biggest headache.  Spider mites don’t play; they reproduce rapidly, reach full maturity in a matter of days, and binge on plant material until chlorophyll is depleted and the plant is dead.  It doesn’t take long for a spider mite spotting to turn into a full blow infestation and the demise of an entire cannabis harvest.


Easy to miss, aphids are tiny, quick, and devastating.  Like spider mites, they reproduce quickly and feast on the cannabis plant matter. They are especially damaging to indoor gardens that lack the natural aphid predators outdoor gardens can harness for protection.

Grasshoppers and Crickets

Pot lovers by nature, these insects will make the cannabis plant their primary food source without quick and effective intervention.  Crickets and grasshoppers typically feast at night and leave behind a whole lot of damage for growers to discover in the morning.  While birds love to eat these bugs, they must dig through the soil to get to them, and that can cause damage to root systems.


Like grasshoppers and crickets, caterpillars are very attracted to cannabis, and their insatiable appetites can destroy the crop.  Borer caterpillars go unnoticed because they burrow through the plant, hollowing it out and killing it before growers realize what’s happening.


They sound as lethal as they are.  Cutworms can destroy a harvest before it even has a chance to begin growing.  These night crawlers eviscerate cannabis seedlings and the tops of cannabis plants.

Leaf Miners

These insects are creepy and make me a little paranoid about eating anything leafy.  They burrow through the cannabis plant and mine the leaves of cells and nutrients.  In their wake, they leave behind brown or white streaks through the leaf tops.  The adults leave their larvae under the leaves, and those babies grow up to be just like their creepy, burrowing parents.  Unfortunately, the best remedy for these bugs are your hands since most pesticides that target leaf miners are more dangerous than they are beneficial.  Yep, that means you’ve got to find ‘em and squish ‘em.

Fungus Gnats

From their larval-hood to adulthood, these microscopic insects love to eat the cannabis plant.  They start by eating fungus near the plant’s base, but steadily eat through the roots.  This can be devastating for plant growth and soil drainage.

Slugs and Snails

Simultaneously cute and disgusting, these common garden pests eat cannabis plant matter and can eventually do a lot of damage.  They aren’t particularly discreet, though.  They leave streaks of shiny slime everywhere they go.  Like I said.  Cute and disgusting.


These tiny, flying insects love to chow down on cannabis.  They live beneath cannabis leaves, and, because of their size, are not easy to see.  Whiteflies can be particularly dangerous because of their ability to spread disease.  As fliers, they are extremely mobile, and once they show up, they can take down an entire harvest.


These tiny bugs thrive on the cannabis flower.  An infestation of them can ruin the crop’s ability to fully mature.  Like whiteflies, thrips are notorious for spreading diseases which can be even more detrimental to the plant than the thrips’ appetite.

Mealy Bugs

These insects are not a problem in small numbers, but an infestation could overrun a harvest.  Mealy bugs are small and live in the plant’s crevices.

They make their presence known by leaving behind gifts of cotton-like balls

These insect-hand-crafted gauze balls can cover a cannabis plant, and the presence of the mealy bugs can cause plant discoloration.


Rather than posing a direct threat to cannabis plants, ants are indicators of other problems since they are attracted to aphids or whiteflies.  Additionally, as burrowing insects, ants can damage the cannabis root systems.


Like ants, birds aren’t always bad.  In fact, they can be extremely helpful in eliminating other pests like caterpillars.  However, birds love seeds.  Birds are most hazardous to cannabis before the plant has even sprouted.

Cats and Dogs

We love our pets, but they aren’t the best for cannabis grows.  Although it isn’t likely that they will eat the cannabis, a cat’s ammonia-heavy urine and pet fecal matter are harmful for cannabis gardens.  The ammonia will wreak havoc on your plants and the feces attracts harmful pests.


Rudolph and Bambi love plants, and that includes young cannabis.  Deer will eat an entire plant, destroying a harvest well before maturity.  Fortunately, a mature cannabis plant’s pungent aroma is a natural repellant for scent-sensitive deer.  Before maturity, however, cannabis plants must be vigilantly guarded against these large herbivores.   

Mice and Rats

While mice and rats are not particularly inclined to seek out cannabis, they will eat it if it’s there and nothing else seems better.  They are also the mammalian versions of roaches—they’re everywhere.  Even when you don’t see them, they see you, the insidious vermin.


Another rodent, gophers tunnel underground.  While burrowing alone isn’t always a bad thing—moles do it, too, but they aerate the soil and eat pesky insects for you—gophers also eat the cannabis roots, sometimes even pulling the entire plant down into their subterranean dwellings.

Natural Solutions to Pests and Parasites

Despite her inconvenience, mother nature is also a force of balance.  Ecosystems work to create and sustain life because each part of that system contributes to its overall wellbeing.  So here is a list of critters to welcome to a cannabis friendly ecosystem.  Keep in mind that these are pretty much exclusive to outdoor grows.

Amphibians are natural predators for snails and slugs.

Aphid midges are great natural predators for over 60 types of aphids.

Damsel bugs eat lots of pests including caterpillars, leafhoppers, thrips, and aphids.

Ground beetles binge eat on slugs, snails, and cutworms.

Lacewing larvae and adults thrive on caterpillars, mealybugs, thrips, whiteflies, and aphids.

Lady bug larvae and adults feast on mites, mealybugs, and aphids.

Birds of prey are natural predators for mice, rats, and gophers.

Sunflowers are pretty, covering, and natural repellants to cutworms.

Wasps and praying mantises are natural predators for caterpillars.

Environmentally Friendly Pest Control and Pesticides

Sometimes introducing natural predators to a cannabis grow isn’t an option or enough.  Here are safe ways to deter pests from your cannabis:

Neem oil has been regarded as an incredibly potent and versatile pesticide for centuries.  A spray containing this oil, organic soap, and warm water can ward off all kinds of insects.

Salt spray is an effective repellant for spider mites and other insects because it dehydrates the bugs and their larvae.

Citrus oil can be used in combination with cayenne pepper, soap, and/or water to create a natural pesticide for slugs and ants.

Onion and Garlic sprays are a natural repellant for most insects.

Scarecrows or reflective objects are good, reversible deterrents for birds.  Once the seeds have sprouted, you can remove these items so birds can help you get rid of other pests.

Fences are the best deterrent for large mammals including dogs, cats, deer, and humans.

Diluted dish liquid is a good way to get rid of grasshoppers and crickets.

Cornmeal is a safe way to deter ants from your plants. While ants are natural predators for whiteflies and aphids, they also threaten cannabis root systems, so apply cornmeal to the soil to keep them away.

Bergman, Robert.  “Marijuana Pests & Bugs—Control and Identification.”  I Love Growing Marijuana.

Group, Edward.  “10 Homemade Organic Pesticides.” Global Healing Center.  28 April 2010.

ROL Staff.  “10 Insects You Should Actually Want Around Your Plants.”  Rodales Organic Life. 11 May 2016.

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Marijuana Stores Near the Space Needle

The Joint Blog - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 23:37
Here’s a look at some of the marijuana stores near Seattle’s Space Needle.

It’s hard to visit Seattle without stopping by the Space Needle – it’s the proverbial tourist attraction that’s difficult to pass up when you’re seeing the sights of the city. An icon of the Pacific Northwest, it draws over 20,000 visitors a day….maybe even you.

“The point of the Space Needle is to serve as an observation deck”

from the structure, you can see downtown Seattle, the Olympic and Cascade Mountain Ranges, Elliot Bay and the islands, Mount Ranier, and Mount Baker. Of course, the Space Needle is also the star of Seattle’s skyline: it’s the centerfold in many of the postcards mailed by vistitors to Washington State.

Dispensaries Nearest the Space Needle

But, what about cannabis? Until there’s a pot dispensary at the very top of the Space Needle (how about it, investors?), you’ll have to settle for one nearby. And some of these include:

Queen Anne Cannabis: Queen Anne Cannabis is located at 312 W. Republican St., Seattle, 98119 – according to their website, they “offer the best service, value, quality, and selection to our community and educate with compassion and integrity.” Once called “Green Anne,” Queen Anne serves the lower Queen Anne neighborhood. They’re within walking distance to the Space Needle and they’re always looking for ways to help the community. They even encourage your ideas via their contact page.

Herban Legends: Herban Legends is located at 55 Bell St., Seattle, 98121 – it’s the first recreational weed shop in Belltown and a five-minute drive from the Space Needle (as well as a five-minute walk to Pike Place). They strive to provide the “coolest pot experience that anyone will ever have anywhere.”

They  have a special affinity for the local community and work to support artists and musicians in any manner they can

They embrace the idea that pot and art are intrinsically linked.

Pot Shop Seattle: Pot Shop Seattle is located at 1628 Dexter Ave N., Seattle, 98109. With a name like “Pot Shop,” there’s no confusion about what they sell (nope, not pots and pans). Their reputation is one of friendly, knowledgeable employees who are particularly good at working with novices. They offer affordable prices and a lot of variety. If you’re a seasoned smoker, they’ll work to help you find something new (if that’s your thing).

Have a Heart Belltown/Downtown Seattle: Have a Heart is located at 115 Blanchard Street, Seattle, 98121. They’re just a few blocks from the Space Needle (so a few minutes walk or fifteen minutes in the glorious, glorious Seattle traffic) and they’re surrounded by a slew of restaurants (something you’ll want when the good old munchies come roaring).

Have a Heart offers a wide selection of flower, pre-rolls, concentrates, edibles, and topicals

Hashtag: Hashtag is located at 3540 Stone Way N., Seattle, 98103. They’re family owned and operated and act as a recreational/medical dispensary as well as an educational resource. Whether you don’t know much about cannabis or know so much you’re planning to name your unborn son “Herb,” the staff goes out of their way to meet your needs.

Some Fun Facts About the Space Needle 

In case you’re not sure if you should visit the Space Needle (and hit up some of the pot shops nearby), consider some of these fun facts:

  • The top of the Space Needle is 605 feet high, not high enough to give you altitude sickness, but high enough to leave anyone afraid of heights wishing they had on a parachute.
  • The concrete foundation of the structure goes 30 feet into the ground.
  • The lot where the Space Needle sits was sold for 75,000 back in 1961.
  • The entire thing was built in just 400 days – it had to be in order to be part of the World’s Fair in 1962.
  • There are 848 steps from the basement’s floor to the top of the Observation Deck – see, you don’t need to join a gym!
  • The Space Needle, at the time it was built, had the distinction of being the tallest building west of the Mississippi River.
  • The structure is designed to withstand winds that reach 200 miles per hour. But this doesn’t mean it doesn’t move – for every 10 miles per hour of wind, it sways about an inch. Occasionally during high winds, parts of the building are closed down for safety reasons.
  • The Space Needle wasn’t always called the Space Needle – it was originally called the “Space Cage.”
  • Each elevator can carry 25 people – the elevators weigh 14,000 pounds (that’s more than an elephant).

Of course, you don’t have to be visiting the Space Needle to take advantage of the marijuana scene in Seattle. Washington was the second state to legalize (they legalized about thirty seconds after Colorado); thus, they have a head start on many of the other newly-legal states. Next time you’re in town, take a toke around and see if you find something that you like.

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Federal Report: “No Evidence-Based Methods to Detect Marijuana-Impaired Driving”

The Joint Blog - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 23:20
A federal report has determined that there is currently no evidence-based method of detecting marijuana-impaired driving, despite numerous states having laws in place that find someone guilty of a DUID if they test above a certain THC level.

“A number of states have set a THC limit in their laws indicating that if a suspect’s THC concentration is above that level (typically 5 ng/ml of blood), then the suspect is to be considered impaired,” states the report conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) . “This per se limit appears to have been based on something other than scientific evidence. Some recent studies demonstrate that such per se limits are not evidence-based.”

In addition the report also calls into question sweat, hair, saliva and urine testing, stating that “there are currently no evidence-based methods to detect marijuana-impaired driving”.

The report notes that “Subjects dosed on marijuana showed reduced mean speeds, increased time driving below the speed limit and increased following distance during a car following task”. Alcohol, in contrast, “was associated with higher mean speeds (over the speed limit), greater variability in speed, and spent a greater percent of time driving above the speed limit. Marijuana had no effect on variability of speed.”

The report released by the NHSTA was mandated by Congress last year. The full 44-page report can be found by clicking here.

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Study: Marijuana Often Effective at Treating Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease and Multiple Sclerosis

The Joint Blog - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 22:51
Marijuana is often effective in treating the symptoms of both Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis, and can help those with these conditions reduce their use of prescription drugs.

This is according to a new study published by the journal Complementary Therapies in Medicine, and published online by the U.S. National Institute of Health.

“Cannabis has been used for medicinal purpose for thousands of years; however the positive and negative effects of cannabis use in Parkinson’s disease (PD) and Multiple Sclerosis (MS) are mostly unknown”, begins the study’s abstract. “Our aim was to assess cannabis use in PD and MS and compare results of self-reported assessments of neurological disability between current cannabis users and non-users.”

For the study; “An anonymous web-based survey was hosted on the Michael J. Fox Foundation and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society webpages from 15 February to 15 October 2016. The survey collected demographic and cannabis use information, and used standardized questionnaires to assess neurological function, fatigue, balance, and physical activity participation. Analysis of variance and chi-square tests were used for the analysis.”

The survey was viewed 801 times, and 595 participants were in the final data set. 76% and 24% of the respondents reported PD and MS respectively. Current users “reported high efficacy of cannabis, 6.4 (SD 1.8) on a scale from 0 to 7 and 59% reported reducing prescription medication since beginning cannabis use.” Current cannabis users “were younger and less likely to be classified as obese”. Cannabis users reported “lower levels of disability, specifically in domains of mood, memory, and fatigue”.

The study concludes by stating that; “Cannabis may have positive impacts on mood, memory, fatigue, and obesity status in people with PD and MS.”

The full study can be found by clicking here.


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Washington State Responds To Attorney General Sessions’ Veiled Threats

The Joint Blog - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 22:39

By Justin Strekal, NORML Political Director

As first reported by Tom Angell of MassRoots.com, Washington State Governor Jay Inslee and Attorney General Bob Ferguson responded to a July 24 letter from US Attorney General Jeff Sessions, in which Sessions’ made multiple allegations all based on a single misleading 2016 report.

One would say, they didn’t pull any punches:

“Your letter, citing the March 2016 Northwest High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (NW HIDTA) report on marijuana in Washington, makes a number of allegations that are outdated, incorrect, or based on incomplete information.”

Cutting right to the heart of the matter, i.e. facts, the Washington state leaders again articulated their desire to educate the (seemingly willing) ignorant Sessions.

“We have twice requested an in-person meeting with you because we believe it will lead to better understanding than exchanging letters. If we can engage in a more direct dialogue, we might avoid this sort of miscommunication and make progress on the issues that are important to both of us. We therefore reiterate our request to meet with you, followed by further appropriate meetings between state and DOJ officials.”

One of the most basic functions of government is to simply provide consistency and certainty in law enforcement. So after repeated efforts by the state’s leadership to receive clarification, basic facets of the Department of Justice’s approach are still unknown. In yet another attempt for guidance, the Governor and state Attorney General requested information on:

  • Whether DOJ intends to follow recommendations from its Task Force on Crime Reduction and Public Safety—in particular, its reported recommendation to continue previous federal policy on state legalization of marijuana.
  • Whether President Trump’s previous statements of support for medical marijuana, and leaving recreational marijuana legalization to the states, represent the policy of the federal government.
  • Whether DOJ will support reasonable federal policies allowing financial institutions to provide service to licensed marijuana businesses, in order to avoid the public safety risks and transparency problems associated with all-cash businesses.
  • How state-regulated marijuana should be treated by the federal government following the President’s declaration that the opioid crisis constitutes a national emergency, and whether the federal government will support objective, independent research into the effects of marijuana law reform on opioid use and abuse.
  • Whether the federal government will help protect public health by supporting agricultural research on the safety of pesticides used in marijuana cultivation.
  • Whether the federal government will support research into expedited roadside DUI testing methods for law enforcement, as alternatives to blood draws.

How Attorney General Sessions will respond, only time will tell.

You can click HERE to send a message to your Representative to urge their support for The Respect State Marijuana Laws Act, bipartisan legislation to prevent the Department of Justice from enforcing federal prohibition in states that have chosen to legalize medical or adult-use marijuana.

You can view the full letter from Governor Inslee and AG Ferguson by clicking here.

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Snowboarder Ross Rebagliati proud to "carry the cannabis torch"

Cannabist - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 22:20
Canadian snowboarder Ross Rebagliati says he's proud to be one of the first Olympians to open up about his cannabis use.

Colorado city gets community boost as pot taxes help propel opening of new rec center

Cannabist - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 21:50
"They really put a lot of time into this place, it's not just a bigger building. It has heart. It has become something that our community members are really proud of."

Paraguay's booming marijuana export traffic attracting gangs and violence

Cannabist - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 21:46
Paraguay produces 9 percent of the world's marijuana supply, and has begun to attract increasing attention and violence from major drug gangs.

Unfixed home wrecked by hash oil manufacturing raises Q's about oversight

Cannabist - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 21:18
The Lafayette home mangled by a suspected hash oil explosion has sat virtually untouched in the months since the February blast, nearby residents say, and efforts to remedy the issue have fallen into a regulatory limbo of sorts.

Which One is Better For Growing Cannabis Hydroponics or Soil?

The Weed Blog - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 18:00

Which One is Better For Growing Cannabis: Hydroponics or Soil?   In the realm of cannabis cultivation, there is this one question that lingers on for all eternity: how should you grow your cannabis hydroponics or soil? And the answer can be as simple as — if you like the challenge and tinkering with new [...]

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Court Case Highlights Need For Continued Federal Protections

NORML Blog - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 17:23

Last week, a US District Court blocked federal prosecutors from continuing a case against a medical marijuana cultivation company as a result of the current, albeit limited, congressional protections from the Department of Justice.

LA Weekly reported:

Humboldt County growers Anthony Pisarski and Sonny Moore had already pleaded guilty to federal allegations (conspiracy to manufacture and possess with intent to distribute) but sought an evidentiary hearing based on legislation, first enacted in 2014, that prohibits the U.S. Department of Justice from cracking down on cannabis suspects who are otherwise following their state laws. The Rohrabacher-Farr amendment is a budget rider, co-authored by SoCal U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, that prevents enforcement and prosecution in medical marijuana states by stripping funding for such endeavors.

U.S. District Court Judge Richard Seeborg on Tuesday stayed the prosecution, so the case is closed unless the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment expires and fails to be re-enacted and federal prosecutors want to resume their case. The defendants’ Beverly Hills attorney, Ronald Richards, says: “This is the first time in my 23-year career I’ve had a case stopped because of an appropriations rider.

“What the court did in this case may be used as a blueprint for other cases,” he says. “It opens the door for people not to get scared.”

In response to this verdict, California NORML Executive Director Dale Gieringer said, “It’s significant that a federal court ruled that people targeted by feds and in compliance with California’s medical marijuana laws ruled in the defendants’ favor.”

The Judge’s verdict was predicated on a previous ruling, United States v. McIntosh, a Ninth Circuit decision last year that upheld a medical marijuana defense for those facing federal prosecution in lawful medical states.

“This is the first case I’m aware of where McIntosh was cited and used to full effect,” continued Gieringer.

On July 27, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) successfully offered and passed the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment in the Senate Appropriations Committee to maintain this protection for lawful medical marijuana programs from the Department of Justice.

You can send a message to your Representative to support this language in the House by clicking HERE. 


Video shows Texas cop removed woman's pants for weed search

Cannabist - Thu, 08/17/2017 - 16:04
A Houston lawyer released a video showing a sheriff’s deputy removing the pants of a handcuffed woman pinned to the ground to perform a body cavity search.
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