Times have changed, Yet some things are still the same….


#DWTS_Tommy_Chong

Tommy’s prison sentence, the result of the War on Drugs.

Tonight I happened to catch a clip of dancing with the stars which featured Tommy Chong.  I was sad to be reminded yet again how much our government that is supposed to be working for the good of the people has actually done to us.  We have two states that have legalized cannabis for recreation use but we still have states where people are being locked up. In states that have legalized for medical use we have patients that are having a hard time accessing medicine while others are facing sanctions and bans at the county and city levels.

California, the first state to legalize, has been one example where county after county fought to ban sales and growth altogether.  Redding in the north part of the state is currently trying to ban the outdoor grows and going so far as to stipulate the type of building, how far from your residence the approved outbuilding can be

and other intrusions.  After so many fought hard to make cannabis available to patients we still see where many are forced to drive hours including experiencing dangerous driving conditions during the winter because of these local bans.

The Federal government has backed down from its hay day of no-knock-raids and busting down doors of cancer patients but we still see families broken and lives shattered because of over zealous local authorities that want to win elections.  We see legal shops set up where adults 21 and over can purchase cannabis for their own personal use but we still see irresponsible behavior solely attributed to cannabis as apposed to the person’s stupidity and lack of experience with cannabis supported with antiquated reefer madness logic of “ban it all”.

2014 has been full of advancements but it is almost over and it will be 15 years into the new millennium, can we say we are making the progress we should be?  Unfortunately we still see too much of the same mentality-harsh punishment-that has been proven to be costly both economically and socially.  Thankfully more people are knowledgeable about the benefits of cannabis and its legalization than ever before.  We have made a lot of strides in understanding the plant and all its compounds in relation to our bodies.  With more and more patients along with cannabis supporters coming forward we are starting to see bigger changes happen.

With elections coming up we all know the spam mail, ads and people accosting us on the street for their causes come with the pumpkin spice season.  While keeping our eye on the larger issues it would be wise to make sure that we are not losing our rights locally.  Tommy Chong, Marc Emery and millions more are a stark reminder of times past and unfortunately for some, present, that we are still not free from the fear of our freedom being taken away.

While we can revel in the success of our victories in some states let us not lose the fire to continue our battle for all to be free.  We cannot live in a world where a person looking death in the face has to worry about being raided and locked up or where people’s lives are destroyed for nothing more than enjoying cannabis.  Our vote is our voice and it is important that we make sure it is heard loud and clear.  Let us make loss of freedom a thing of the past for all.

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One thought on “Times have changed, Yet some things are still the same….

  1. Well, personally I think that at the Federal level, there are two crucial fights we can win in the near term.
    1) Ending the DEA/NIDA monopoly on supplying cannabis for research. This monoploy effectively prohibits medica;/scientific research with cannabis. And in the rare instances where it is allowed (usually for research looking for harms) the cannabis supplied is an incredibly low quality misture of flower, leaf, and stem that is wholly unrepresentative of the cannabis actually in use today.

    2) Removing Cannabis from Schedule I . While I don’t believe cannabis should be scheduled at all, it clearly does not meet the legal requirements to be Schedule I because it does have documented medical uses and it is not highly addictive, which means it does not meet 2 of the main criteria for Schedule I (cocaine and many opoids are in the lower class Schedule II), . Reclassifying it would help accomplish everything from allowing for research to potentially reducing potential criminal sentences. And as part of this, the ability to schedule drugs should be taken away from the DEA, and the responsibility should fall to the scientific panel which normally reviews substances for the DEA (and who, with everything from cannabis to MDMA, the DEA ignored).

    And, on a more personal level- two things I would recommend to ALL cannabis users:
    1) Be responsible and respectful. Don’t smoke in public around non-users. Don’t drive blazed. Don’t go to work blazed. Stop being of the mindset that cannabis use is outside social norms, so it somehow frees you to break other social norms. Don’t drink alcohol and consume cannabis outside of the safety and privacy of your own home. Show the respect and responsibility you want to be shown.

    2) Come out of the closet. I have long believed there are strong parallels to the gay rights movement and the cannabis movement. And a huge advance for gay rights came when people started coming out. And people were forced to realize that their sibling, child, or eeven parent… Their friend, their doctor, their lawyer, their co-worker… people they loved and/or respected were gay. The same is true for cannabis- when we hide many peoples only knowledge of cannabis users comes from those who insist we are evil. Forcing people to realize we are, in fact, the people they love and respect does us more good then any petition…any letter to a congress critter…

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