Morgan Fox

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U.S.: Big Alcohol Is Working To Undermine Marijuana Legalization

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Wikileaks' recent dump of Democratic National Committee's e-mails might prove an agenda against both Bernie Sanders and marijuana legalization.

Many major news outlets shared that DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and other officials received e-mails questioning Bernie Sanders' religion in an attempt to undermine his support among voters.

However,'s Tom Angell uncovered a daily e-newsletter that included a paid advertisement from the Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America (WSWA) warning against the dangers of marijuana.

In the May 24, 2016 edition of Huddle, a newsletter produced by the Politico website, the WSWA’s advertisement reads:

"While neutral on the issue of legalization, WSWA believes states that legalize marijuana need to ensure appropriate and effective regulations are enacted to protect the public from the dangers associated with the abuse and misuse of marijuana.

Twenty-three states and the District of Columbia have legalized medicinal marijuana while Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, Washington and D.C. have legalized possession and recreational use. In the years since the state legalized medicinal use, Colorado law enforcement officials have documented a significant increase in traffic fatalities in which drivers tested positive for marijuana.

U.S.: What Happened When States Legalized Marijuana


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

When the sale of marijuana for recreational use became legal in Colorado and Washington last year -- and in Oregon this year -- a few predictions, both good and bad, were made about the outcome. Here's what has actually happened so far.


• No increase in teen use: Opponents of legalization claimed young people would flock to weed if the legal penalties were removed. That hasn't happened, reports Daniel Dale at The Star. Major studies have found no increase in teen use in states the legalized medical marijuana; in Colorado, fewer students said they used pot after legalization than before.

• Tax windfall: Colorado has taken in more than $86 million in cannabis taxes and fees this year, far more than for alcohol. Washington state is predicting $1 billion in marijuana taxes over the next four years. "All that money that was going to criminals and the hands of cartels is now being sent toward legitimate taxpaying businesses," said Morgan Fox of the Marijuana Policy Project.

U.S.: For First Time, Most Authoritative Survey Finds Majority Of Americans Support Legal Marijuana


The General Social Survey — ‘widely regarded as the single best source of data on societal trends’ — finds 52% think marijuana should be made legal; only 42% think it should remain illegal

For the first time, the General Social Survey has reportedly found that a majority of Americans support making marijuana legal, reports the Washington Post

The survey, which is “widely regarded as the single best source of data on societal trends,” according to its website, found 52 percent think marijuana should be made legal and only 42 percent think it should remain illegal.

National polls released last fall by Gallup and the Pew Research Center found similar results.

“Americans are tired of laws that punish adults for using a substance that is undeniably safer than alcohol," said Morgan Fox, communications manager for the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). "Hopefully their elected officials are paying attention and preparing for the inevitable. The failures of marijuana prohibition are too obvious to ignore forever, which is evidenced by the growing support for ending it.

“Marijuana has been a relatively prominent part of American culture for decades, and that’s never going to change," Fox said. "Either we continue to force it into the underground market or we start regulating it and treating it like other products that are legal for adults. Federal and state officials who are clinging to marijuana prohibition need to get over it and allow society to move forward.”

Michigan: Number Of Medical Marijuana Patients Falls For 2nd Year In A Row


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

The number of patients enrolled in Michigan's medical marijuana program dropped for the second year in 2014, according to state statistics.

Last year, the number of MMJ cards for patients in the program totaled 96,408, according to the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, reports Charles E. Ramirez at The Detroit News. That number has fallen from 119,470 patients in 2011 and 118,368 in 2013.

An overwhelming 63 percent of Michigan voters approved the Medical Marihuana Act in 2008. It allows residents with debilitating medical conditions and a doctor's authorization to legally use cannabis.

Under the law, Michigan residents can apply for and obtain license to use and grow marijuana for medical purposes.

Bureaucrats with the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs wouldn't speculate on why the numbers are down, and Morgan Fox, a spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project, said it's not clear what's behind the decline. "The number of patients in Michigan has been fluctuating and it's not clear what's behind the decline," Fox said.

Fox said one big reason that probably limits participation in Michigan's program is that patients don't feel the law protects them from prosecution. Gung-ho anti-pot law enforcement agencies, led by notoriously anti-cannabis Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette, have shown a disquieting eagerness to raid patients and providers.

D.C.: Marijuana Decriminalization Bill Expected To Advance At Tuesday Council Meeting


Eight of 13 council members are sponsoring measure that would replace criminal penalties for simple marijuana possession with a $25 civil fine similar to a parking ticket

A bill that would decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana in the District of Columbia is expected to advance Tuesday at a meeting of the Washington, DC Council, according to the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). If approved, it will be on the agenda for final passage at the council's next legislative session.

The measure would remove criminal penalties for possession of less than one ounce of marijuana for individuals 18 years of age and older and replace them with a civil fine of $25, similar to a parking ticket. The fine increases to $100 for public smoking of marijuana.

Individuals under the age of 18 who commit a violation would also have their parents notified. It also removes penalties for possession of paraphernalia in conjunction with small amounts and specifies that individuals cannot be searched or detained based solely on an officer’s suspicion of marijuana possession.

Currently, possession of any amount of marijuana is a criminal offense punishable by up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.

The bill is sponsored by Ward 6 Council Member Tommy Wells and supported by eight of the council's 13 members, as well as by D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray.

At-large Council Member David Grosso has introduced separate legislation that would tax and regulate marijuana in a manner similar to alcohol.

Arizona: Top Health Official Warns Marijuana Soda Pop/Candy Is A Felony


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Arizona's top health official warned on Friday that medical marijuana soda pop or hard candy can still land you, and the dispensary owner who sold it to you, in jail -- even if you are a medical marijuana patient.

According to State Health Director Will Humble, the medical marijuana law approved by Arizona voters in 2010 allows cannabis-infused food products, but he cautioned the law is written to require that the food products contain "actual pieces" of the marijuana plant.

Humble said that means any cannabis edible that contains only an extract remains a felony in Arizona.

The legal distinction, of course, is absurd. The only difference between food products prepared with marijuana and those prepared with marijuana extracts is, of course, the size of the "pieces of marijuana" inside them; in the case of most extracts, the "pieces" would be the cannabinoids themselves, mainly psychoactive THC and anti-inflammatory CBD.

Humble said he's "not an attorney" and "cannot define exactly" when the preparation of food products such as brownies, sodas or lollipops crosses the illegal line. But he claimed Arizona's law is "very clear" that only "usable marijuana" is legally protected, and not the extracts minus the plant matter.

United States: States say it's time to rethink medical marijuana

By Matt Smith, CNN

There is a truth that must be heard! Medical marijuana advocates are hoping state governments can succeed where their efforts have failed by asking federal authorities to reclassify pot as a drug with medical use.

Shortly before Christmas, Colorado became the fourth state to ask the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration to reclassify marijuana as a narcotic in the same league as heavyweight painkillers including oxycodone. The governors of Washington and Rhode Island filed a formal petition with the agency in November, and Vermont signed onto that request shortly afterward.

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