A Happy New Year and A New Beginning

A new year is upon us and with it comes new possibilities. This year we will discover even more miraculous properties of cannabis. From cancers to other ailments we already know the capabilities that cannabinoids possess. We have seen two states move forward beyond medical needs and legalize for recreational use. With that comes the hope that it will make it easier for patients to obtain the necessary strains they require.
We need to keep in mind that it is not simply using cannabis but using it correctly that will achieve desired results. As we have discussed before each strain possess different compounds or cannabinoids. We have already seen 3 strains genetically mapped, discovering a variety of previously unknown compounds and it will be exciting to see more added to the list.
We have seen so many advances in the delivery methods used for patients. We are no longer only left with smoking. For patients there are very real solutions.
We have seen countless stories of patients who were unable to eat, unable to control their shaking or seizures who have taken only a small amount of cannabis and have been able to control their symptoms. We have also seen in studies where cannabis has slowed or stopped cancer growth. It is no longer deniable that cannabis has real medical use.
I am hopeful that with the advancement of Washington and Colorado’s legislation as well as the other states that have set up medical provisions that we will continue to see the path cleared for all states and ultimately all patients to have access to not only cannabis but quality and variety of strains. Individualized care is key and will only come about for the masses if it becomes legally available. We have suffered for too long. We have lost too many loved ones unnecessarily. Now is the time to act! Call, e-mail or write your representatives and urge them to work towards the common goal of providing for all a safe natural alternative to big Pharma’s poison.

Victories and More Roads To Travel

Tonight we witnessed history.  Tonight we saw the people of Washington and Colorado stand up and speak for legalization.  We witnessed the people stand for a new approach to the failed 75 year long prohibition method.  It is encouraging for all that have fought so hard, many of them till death, to finally see fruition of all their hard work.  Tonight should give courage to all that we can make a difference and we can end the War on Drugs.  Too many have lost their property, jobs, children, loved ones or their life to a senseless approach to a social issue.  We need to stand up for the rest of the country that is still imprisoned under prohibition.  Citizens who pose no harm to others should not be living in fear.  We know there is medical value.  We know there are more harmful things out there that are currently legal.  We know how much we could benefit from legalization including saving billions and creating residual income through taxes, fees and creation of a new industry.  We know that we need a new viable approach.  We know the time is now.  Do not let it stop with today.  Do not let it stop with Washington and Colorado.  Let us stand up and make change happen.  Let us stand up and make history once more.  Election day is over now it is time to get to work!

It Is Time To Get Serious, It is Time To Talk Legalization

It is a difficult subject to discuss without getting a little fired up and at the same time heartbroken.  Cannabis legalization either for medical use only or for adults 21 years and older seems to be in the same category as discussing the latest pop news.  Nonchalantly, with a laugh and without much regard.  It seems that every time the subject of medical cannabis comes up it is either ignored or discussed with a laugh.  With high numbers of support and more states lined up to join the 17 states that have already approved medical cannabis legislation this subject will need to be seriously discussed.

While some have the luxury of getting stoned for the hell of it millions depend on cannabis for serious medical issues.  Many of them wish they could only use cannabis for recreation instead of the necessity with which they find themselves.  Yes cannabis can be a lot of fun to use recreationally.  Yes it can be fun to eat pizza and zone out on the couch with friends.  For those losing their livelihood, their children, their freedom or their life I am sure they have a much different outlook.

What about the cancer patient in pain?  The one who is looking death in the face and decides to take a chance with cannabis treatments to ease the pain, nausea and other horrific side effects.  The patient who uses a state legal dispensary to safely access  trusted raw cannabis or cannabis infused products.  The patient who uses the concentrated RSO oil that not only helps with the side effects but actually helps fight the cancer including inducing cancer cell death.  Is it still funny when that patients house is raided, when they are terrorized in their own home, when they are taken to jail?  Is it funny that we are keeping a PLANT from citizens who have gone through the state approved process to obtain state legal medication that not only helps cancer but hundreds of other medical issues as well?

What about the hardworking top student who gets drug tested or is caught with a small amount and loses their scholarship or funding?  What about the employee who otherwise is known as a perfect employee but comes up positive on a drug test?   There is too much known evidence to date that beyond proves cannabis has medical value.  Every week new studies are published attesting to that fact.  Should the federal government really be dictating to the states how to run a state program?  Should we still take such a hard stance against a versatile natural plant that not only helps millions but is already being used by a large percentage of the country?

We are allowed to vote, drive, consume alcohol, raise children, build large corporations and many other highly responsible activities and responsibilities so why are we not allowed to choose how to treat our illnesses or relax at the end of the day?  Why are we not allowed to choose natural cannabis instead of the more harmful choice alcohol?

Cannabis effects us not only socially but financially as well.  The cannabis related industry has grown during the recession.  We would save billions in wasted efforts trying to stifle a growing industry.  We would save lives and instead allow tax revenue and other positive residual effects to spread throughout the communities.  

We have to take a serious look at this subject and come to the table as adults.  Its time to put away the pizza, quit the giggles and other tired cliches.  This effects everyone from children losing their parents to the loved one with an illness prosecuted for using a natural herb used for thousands of years.  If we are truly free adults then we should be able to discuss this in a serious manner.  I urge all of you to speak up and let your representatives know it is time to seriously talk about cannabis legalization.

U.S. Government Destroying History: Why We Must Save Cannabis Plant Genetics From Extinction

Strains such as Kush have been made notorious through songs and celebrities professing their love for the strain.  Those that have experienced Kush know why it is so famous.  From Tahoe OG Kush to Afghan Kush the high is memorable.  Cannabis is not a new plant created in a lab but rather has been used for centuries as medicine, religious herb and for recreation.  Research proves more every day how vital plant genetics are in finding the right compounds to combat illnesses and find cures.  Genetics is something that isn’t often thought of when discussing the War on Drugs but it has definitely been affected by it.

Some cannabis genetics are thought to have come from Providences in China and spread throughout the Silk Road while others originate in the Middle East.  There of course was the large movement through the 60s and 70s that helped spread and create new cannabis strains through people exchanging seeds and ganja.

With new genetics infiltrating the gene pool in the States new plant strains emerged.  Hybrids also came out of the mix.  People discovered that by crossing different strains they could breed out the undesirable traits while promoting higher potency and better growth stamina.  By cross breeding not only Indica with Indica but breeding for balance we have seen hybrid strains that have the pain relief of an Indica but with the “upper” functioning high of a Sativa.  Genetics play a role in growth, mold/pest resistance and of course potency.  

Blueberry strains are known for their social anxiety and pain relief as well as helping with digestive disorders and have spawned notorious strains like Blue Cheese, Blue Dream, Old-Time Moonshine and Blue Haze .  DJ Short created the Blueberry strain by crossing his Afghani Indica, brought by some growers from California and his Purple Thai.  The female pedigree of his Purple Thai is his highly potent all-around champion, “Juicy Fruit” Highland Thai female. It packed a very sweet tropical punch and an intense high that lasted for many hours. The second plant was a Purple Thai out of Oregon, Ohio. This plant was a cross between an outstanding Highland Oaxaca Gold and a very freaky Chocolate Thai. The hybrid was very dark colored and would express a deep royal purple color at the slightest exposure to cold. The finished product was equally tasty and strong as the Juicy Fruit female.

The War on Drugs forced cannabis use underground.  Cannabis began being bred for bag appeal and what would bring the best sales.  Growers began looking for traits that would bring the biggest yield with the shortest flowering time.  Medicinal qualities were disregarded.    For decades it was thought that the compound THC was responsible for all of the effects cannabis provided.  We now know of CBD which is actually responsible for pain relief and has been found to help with insomnia, anxiety and Alzheimer’s.  CBD was another casualty of the war with most of today’s strains registering less than 0.5%.  With the War on Drugs ongoing for over 40 years countless plants have been destroyed with the government’s actions forever destroying precious genetics.

Although cannabis has been around for thousands of years it wasn’t until the summer of 2011 that the genetics of the cannabis Sativa and Indica were mapped.  We know that there are hundreds of strains that have come from the original heirloom landraces.  Today many patients and citizens alike have the option of what type of relief or high they are looking for.  From the euphoric highs of the Sativa to the amazing pain relief that Indicas bring the options are endless.

Everyday we have new research that is released that shows the anti-cancer properties of cannabinoids.  Now more than ever we understand why we need to preserve the genetics of all cannabis plants.  We know that we can use different strains to treat a wide range of illnesses and afflictions.  We also know that cannabis is not a one-size-fits-all type of plant.  You need to have the correct strain containing the right balance of compounds to reach the desired effects.

We have more proof than we have ever had before showing the medical benefits even on a molecular level.  We are beyond smoke when taking about cannabis therapies.  There are a wide range of options when talking about uses.  Tinctures, edibles, concentrates, oils, topical lotion, capsules, vaporizers and more.

Support is at an historic high with medical use over 75% and legalization for adults over 21 at 50%.  States that have enacted decriminalization have found favorable outcomes.  States that have enacted medical statues have found large increases in tax income as well as economic growth in the communities.

If cannabis is allowed to thrive imagine the possibilities.  Imagine 5, 10, 15 years from now how much we will know about genetics, compounds and treatments for cancers.  Imagine all the possibilities if we could openly and safely exchange genetics and end products.  How many people could find relief?  How many could save their life?

It is time that we stand up and protect cannabis genetics.  We need to stop the violent raids by government officials.  The government needs to change their stance on cannabis therapies.  Now more than ever it is time we stop the continual attacks on patients, crops and our heritage.  The War on Drugs needs to end.  It has been a failed war for over 40 years that has forever changed the history of cannabis.  Those that have kept cannabis genetics alive even in the face of persecution and imprisonment thus passing down history should be celebrated.  Urge your representative today to show support for ending the failed approach to dealing with cannabis.

Cannabis, Cancer And Children:Why We Must Give Parents A Choice

There is something special about children that brings a smile.  Some parents wait a long time to be able to have that special time to cradle their child, gazing into their eyes.  Imagine being the parents faced with the reality that your child has cancer.  For over 10,000 parents each year that is the case.  Vigilantly staying by their child’s side through countless shots, painful procedures, body wrenching medications and worst of all watching as their child withers away before their eyes.  The spark slowly going out leaving behind a weak body.  Most would try anything to save their baby.  

Current therapies  such as chemotherapy are not precise measures.  Rates of success in comparisson with side effects make some wonder why alternatives are being stifled.    In contrast there is mounting evidence of the anti-tumor effects of cannabis compounds.  Cannabis has been praised for its large window of error since cannabis does not cause death.

Most in the cannabis community know who Cashy Hyde is.  He is the little boy who’s father treated him with cannabis oil and who today is cancer free.  Cashy has undergone extensive treatments that ravaged his tiny body.  His father watched as the light faded and decided to save his son.  He fed Cashy Rick Simpson Method Cannabis Oil through his feeding tube and miraculously watched his son bounce back to life.  Within days they noticed a difference.

Cashy is not alone.  There are millions of others that have been helped and cured with cannabis.  The discussion of cannabis is beyond smoke.  Cannabis research has shown that by targeting the Endocannabinoid system with the right combinations of compounds you will receive the desired effects including inducing cell death in cancer.

With so much more scientific medical research as proof the majority of the country is asking why we still pursue prohibition with a vengeance.  California has been helping patients since 1996.  Last year we saw a flood of stories where federal agencies terrorized local communities with their SWAT style raids.  In doing so they cut off supply of much needed medicine for patients just like Cashy.

We must do something to give parents an option to save their children.  When parents are told there is nothing more that can be done should we really take away hope.  Should we incarcerate parents for possessing a plant, one that science proves is lifesaving?  We need to bring sanity back into the equation.  We must change the laws.  Me must challenge the “way its always been”.  It is time to allow parents the right to decide for their children.  Several states have proposed or pending legislation.  Contact your state representatives and urge them to help change the future for our children.

Cannabis Prohibition: Is It Really Keeping Our Children Safe?

Many a bored teen will hang out with friends and be faced with choosing to use drugs or not.  Many government officials as well as parents tout the War on Drugs as a savior to our children.  They say that it keeps the drugs out of the hands of minors, off the streets and out of schools.  With the economy shining a spotlight onto finances one can quickly see how big of a budget the War on Drugs consumes.  With taking all the different facets of this war into account some wonder if its really working.

The War on Drugs has been waging for over 40 years.  It has cost the tax-payers over $14 trillion, billions annually.  There have been surges and wanes over the 40 years in intensity in the pursuit to eradicate drug use.  Over the years we have witnessed many tragedies and successes.  We have seen harmful drug use drop among the population but especially minors.  We have also seen over the last 18 months an intensity like never before in the use of intimidation tactics, SWAT style raids against state legal patients, abuse, or lethal force when pursuing cannabis users.

With more education and information available to teens today many are able to see through the hypocrisy and lies.  Teens can see you are lying especially when they try cannabis, realize that it is not going to kill them and that they actually like the effects.  With alcohol, who’s effects are similar to cannabis but with much more harm at stake, not only available for sale but advertised everywhere including major sports events it is hard to see the difference.  When they see you are lying about cannabis they question other “truths” you have been telling them.

Simple cannabis possession or other non-violent cannabis related offenses can claim your driver’s license, student loans, subsidized housing, or federal grants.  It can jail a parent or guardian even if they are state and county legal.  With a parent jailed it costs tax-payers more to incarcerate and breaks up a family where the children are thrown into the broken foster care system.  All of us should be asking if this is really what is best for our children.

Children that go into the system cost tax-payers millions each year.  It costs the child emotionally and psychologically.   Children that grow up in the system are bounced around to different homes causing them to act out, perform poorly in school, drop out, get into legal trouble and end up repeating their parents mistakes.  Should we really treat cannabis related offenses this harshly?  Are these tactics really working?

Cannabis use was slightly higher this year but more harmful drugs, including alcohol, were reportedly down according to a recent study among teens use.  Those that take a quick look around or have a conversation with a teen will learn how easily drugs are accessible.  Each year D.E.A. officials boast of their catches but in reality they have barely scratched the surface.  Even with officials raiding and confiscating thousands of plants, California’s number one cash crop was still cannabis.  The plain truth is that it is a plant that can be grown in anyone’s home.  It can be kept from anyone’s knowledge provided the grower is smart.  It can be accessed through many avenues including access through children.

Drug cartels have taken notice of America’s love of drugs and has very outstretched networks that effect our children.  The violence and corruption that comes along with the cartels are infiltrating our schools.  The cartels lure children with money or threats using them as drug runners, smugglers or sellers.  They know that if children are caught the punishment is less.  The also know that it takes less money to impress children.  In this way they have been able to utilize children to sell to others including their peers thus spurring not only more drug use but recruiting even more children.

California has a heavily burdened prison and welfare system.  They have a large amount of incarcerated inmates for cannabis related crimes.  Our nation has been fighting this war for far too long.  Even our children see the truth about cannabis.  Isn’t it time we started talking about this subject from a new perspective?  Our law enforcement agencies have received cuts across the states including here in California.  Our streets are not safer.  Drug use has not been eradicated even after over 40 years.  Families are broken, children are effected, states are bankrupt and in the end drugs are still easily accessible at any school.  Isn’t it time we end the War on Drugs and start with a new approach?

It Is Time To Start Looking At Cannabis Differently

We all get involved with the community for different reasons.  We watch a loved one suffer through horrific pain, see injustice done to another, are a victim of the system or just realize that the harm and cost done to our nation is not worth it.  Whether it is from personal strife or in memory of a loved one we all feel the passion.  It is sometimes unfortunate that it takes a tragic event for people to become aware and get involved.  Our hope is that we can prevent tragedies while still making people aware of all the damage done by the War on Drugs.

Some activists like Jack Herer died before he was able to see the results of his work.  Although they live on in the community isn’t it sad that even with today’s vast knowledge of the medical value possessed by cannabis compounds some patients are still treated like criminals?  Some patients die with the label of a criminal even though their only crime was using a plant when they were at their weakest.

This past week in Oakland, CA we witnessed the federal government yet again demonstrate its over-reaching intimidation tactics against a well known cannabis activist  Richard Lee.  Mr Lee bankrolled Prop 19, owned Blue Sky dispensary as well as industry trade school Oaksterdam University.  Federal agents raided those locations as well as Mr. Lee’s personal residence on Monday.

Backlash and outrage from the city as well as the community were immediate.  Protesters, blogs, news outlets as well as city officials spoke out against the U.S. Attorney General Melinda Haag’s office and other federal agents condemning their actions.  One message seemed to be that although federal law may consider cannabis illegal it’s legal for medical use in California, so stay out of state and city business.  Supervisor David Campos showed support saying “San Francisco stands firm against the federal government on the issue of medical cannabis”.  Fellow Supervisor Christina Olague called the federal threats to dispensary landlords to either evict the dispensaries or face legal action “absurd” and criticized the “ignorance coming out of Washington right now.”

The cannabis community in California and across the nation are once more betrayed by the current administration.  Yet again federal agents are attacking Californians, who for the past 15 years, have approved of cannabis for medical use.  In 2011 we saw several large scale raids carried out against our own citizens.  They have nothing left but to go after citizens for obscure tax laws and threaten any land owner with forfeiture of property if they lease to a legally operated dispensary.  These kinds of stories surely can’t be the United States of America who’s very objective is to protect its citizens from such types of theft?

If a dispensary or other cannabis industry related business is in complete compliance with state, county and city regulations and is actually a benefit to the community why would the federal government feel the need to stomp all over our home bringing terror into the community?  Why do they feel the need to aggressively barge in with their intimidation tactics and leave destruction in their path?  Why must patients who are otherwise law abiding citizens be treated in the same manner as terrorists or drug cartel members?  If Californians, the people who actually have to live with any repercussions of legalizing cannabis approve why then can’t the federal agents respect that and at the very least give some dignity back to the patients when dealing with them?

After presidential promises and memo reassurances proved to be completely empty many feel lied to and betrayed and rightfully so.  People further are disrespected when the President and his administration continue to address the issue in a laughing manner as if it is a bunch of frat boys asking the question.  They seem to forget the single mother cancer patient who must choose between keeping custody of her children and relieving pain and other side effects.  They forget the families who have lost loved ones to police incompetence in their endless fight in the War on Drugs.  Or the millions of people who have been directly effected and the whole nation who ends up paying for it.

Trillions of dollars have been wasted.  Schools are in disrepair, cities are going bankrupt, crime is going up and yet our priorities are going after patients.  It is time to demand an end to this costly war!  50,000 Mexicans have died, some violently, all in the name of the War on Drugs.  Top South American leaders see it is time for a different approach  and have already started looking for alternatives.  Meanwhile our leaders continue their archaic thinking taking a hardened stance against legalization or decriminalization.

With the economy on life support, people in desperate need of jobs and the government spending an obscene amount of tax-payer money on prohibition it is time to start looking at cannabis differently.  Cannabis is one of America’s biggest cash crop and California’s largest cash crop.  It can be regulated and taxed in the same manner as alcohol which would also address the restrictions for minors.  By responsibly regulating cannabis, communities across the nation can benefit.

After the events that took place this week it is obvious that the time is now to speak up.  We should not tolerate these attacks on citizens, on patients, on our loved ones.  We should not wait for a tragic event to strike us we should get involved now and stop these aggressive tactics from our own government.  Write, email or call your representative and urge them to demand a stop to these attacks.  Call the White house and let your voice be heard.    How far are we willing to let them intrude into our communities?

Individualized Treatments: Key To Cannabis’ Success

With so many new scientific discoveries published for the world to see many patients are now gaining a better understanding of how cannabis actually helps them.  Millions of patients have found relief in cannabis for a wide range of afflictions with millions more that have found relaxation.  Cannabis has been used for medicinal, religious and recreation purposes for thousands of years.  But it wasn’t until the 60s when the endocannabinoid system was discovered that we really began to understand the effects.  In 2011 the genetics of the cannabis plant was mapped with that we found that it was not just a plant but a complex world filled with compounds that have many applications.

Patients now have the option of learning what compounds exist in the cannabis plant and how that can help them personally.  Currently there are companies one in particular, GW Pharmaceuticalsthat is seeking FDA approval of a new drug that contains actual cannabinoids, not synthetic, which is currently approved and on the market.  Their mouth spray contains a blend of cannabinoids that they have found to commonly bring relief.

The problem is now that patients are armed with more in-dept information of not only their illness but of cannabis and its compounds they are no longer happy with a “one size fits all” treatment.  Why and how cannabis interacts with our system is becoming more widely known.  With this comes the knowledge that when using cannabis the key to its success is using the right mix of compounds.  Many studies point to the fact that you can not just isolate THC or just CBD but  that its the correct balance of multiple compounds that achieves the desired effect.  This is important to keep in mind when researching your ailment.  Looking for strains that match up with your needs can be very tricky so it is recommended that you seek help when undertaking this.

This is just one more reason why legalization is important.  In states that have legalized medical use of cannabis, dispensaries have flourished.  This allows first-time patients to be guided through the process with experienced patients and experts.  This also allows for supervision of a professional doctor instead of just yourself.  Dispensaries offer a wide array of strain choices within sativa, indica and hybrid varieties.  Professionals also help with choosing the right delivery method for you.

Cannabis use has come a long way since the casual days of the 60s.  Today patients are faced with many choices from natural buds,concentrates, tinctures, edibles and more.  In the states that have passed medical use laws patients standards have been raised.  Gone are the days when people were satisfied with whatever the guy on the corner had that day, no questions asked.  Today patients can inquire about anything from if a bud is organic to what the percentage of THC, CBD or CBN a product contains.

Many dispensaries are now testing their products to not only raise industry standards but to educate patients and promote their best buds.  In today’s market we see dispensaries competing for business giving patients the best selection.  Patients are becoming more educated on the differences between not only the strains but the major compound contents.  With the database of knowledge on individual strains and their compounds becoming not only ever increasing but more accessible it is only a matter of time before we have a better grasp to really start helping patients.

One of the largest shortfalls of today’s medical community is individualized care.  Many times patients are quickly shuffled through their appointment with their doctor trying out different therapies that have worked for other patients.  We do not have the availability of affordable technology to scan or sequence every patients illness or cancer.  Someday we will have wide-spread use of technology that allows doctors to give patients exactly what their bodies need.  Gone will be the days when doctors guess if a medication will work or kill you.  We know today that the technology exists to DNA sequence a cancerous tumor.  We already know that if we have the right combination of cannabis compounds it can shrink a tumor.  Think of all the loved ones that we could save with the right individualized care.

Today’s medications can cause many side effects including respiratory failure, liver damage and even death.  Many times patients are left with the option of doctors guessing which medication will be most helpful with the least damage and many times are prescribed more medication later on to combat damaged caused by previous treatments.  Cannabis has been praised for its forgiving window for patients in regards to damage from side effects.  Common knowledge of no reported overdoses or deaths from cannabis is another appealing factor.  Many have discovered that the benefits of cannabis outweigh the non-lethal side effects and have stopped taking all other medications.

With patients today educated on not only their illness but the available treatment options it is no wonder that they no longer want to accept only what the industry is willing to provide.  Many have taken their health into their own hands.  We have discovered how vital individualized care is when dealing with cannabis and hopefully have sparked interest into other avenues where this can be applied.  It is no longer in the best interest of the nation to rely so heavily on the current industries but instead look for not only natural options but ones that will not do harm.  We can look to the future for the technologies that can one day save us but for today we need to keep our option of being able to choose our own strain combination for ourselves until we all can have individualized care.  To do this we must continue in our fight for legalization.

Dear Mr. President

I know this year is a very important year for you.  It is just as important for millions of Americans across the nation.  I write to ask you a question.  In an election year that many feel is vital we would like to know why the issue of cannabis has not been properly discussed?  I have read the releases from the administration but it fails to properly address our concerns.  The issue has been ignored at many venues where it was the leading question.

After 40 years of this War on Drugs where have we gotten and was it worth it?  In this economy many people are hurting and everyone is looking for ways to save money.  The War on Drugs cost taxpayers billions of dollars each year and is responsible for many tragic stories.

Not only has it cost us money but it has cost us as a society as well.  Millions of Americans have been shuffled through the judicial system destroying their lives many for simple possession.  This problem has also exposed racial divides and furthered the tension in the country.  People have lost faith in law enforcement in many cities.  In Mexico over 50,000 have died in the last 6 years directly resulting from this war.  The Cartels are getting richer and the demand is still there.

There is a sizable and growing group of supporters across the nation.  75% support medical use and the number for legalization for adults over 21 is rapidly growing.  In this economy where many are downsizing the cannabis industry is booming.  The states that have legalized cannabis have seen a sharp increase in revenue both in taxes and fees as well as residual income for local communities.  When properly regulated and implemented we have seen excellent examples shine through.

Consumers no longer want to go to the street corner dealer but instead enjoy the safety and security of dispensaries.  There patients can find natural, organic strain choices with professional help and options in consumption.  They can feel confident that they are paying taxes and contributing towards the community instead of the black market.

With legalization comes regulation which assists in restricting access to minors.  Today minors are restricted from buying and accessing alcohol on their own due to strict regulations.  We have seen the devastating effects that alcohol prohibition caused.  Since its repeal we have also seen the effects that it has had on this nation.  From responsible use to fatalities from car accidents, consumption and domestic violence alcohol has been responsible.  Today alcohol is advertised during major sporting events, radio, TV, movies billboards and more exposing children at a young age.

There is too much proof both in scientific studies and in testimonies to deny the many benefits of cannabis.   With the knowledge we have gained so far patients of all kinds have found relief with cannabis.  We have also seen miraculous cases such as Cash Hyde overcome childhood cancer.  We have come much further than smoking on a Friday night but rather uncovered just the surface of what looks to be exciting and promising discoveries.

With all these factors in mind our community is wondering why our our President and candidates, who are vying for the highest power in the country for the next four years  and who directly effect this issue, continue to ignore us?  We want to know why an issue that directly effects millions and indirectly effects us all would not be considered?

We are looking for a leader who is willing to stand up to the opposition and show people that legalization can be done responsibly with regulations and state approval.  We need a leader who will take us seriously and address our needs.  We are looking for that leader this year and it is for that reason it needs to be addressed.  Millions of voters are waiting it is time to address cannabis.

We Can Not Afford To Continue The War On Drugs

The Vice President visited with South American leaders but continued the hardened stance against drug legalization despite opposing opinions from the other side.  While the US government, in their fight against drugs, has proven its disregard for its own citizens they have also shown that they are willing to sacrifice over 50,000 Mexicans as well as thousands in other Latin countries, murdered, some decapitated and dumped in public streets.  By continuing this costly, bloody and utterly disastrous War on Drugs they have proven that they will stop at nothing to continue their agenda.    Over 40 years of continual war on drugs has cost this country dearly and many ask is it really worth it?

With all that is going on in the country today it’s no wonder that people start to ignore some issues and continue on with more pressing matters. But when taking a further look into the cannabis issue it has more to do with every day life than what appears at face value.  There are multiple layers to this complex issue.  Cannabis and the War on Drugs impacts the economy, citizen’s rights, society, families, the individual user and much more.  It impacts all of us in one way or another many without us realizing it.

With the economy in the shape that it’s currently in, budget cuts rampant, layoffs, department downsizing; cities across the country are having to prioritize and make cuts often deciding which cases are the most important and letting others slide including violent crimes.  With cuts to law enforcement cities across the nation see crimes rates rise and the value decrease which impacts us all.  Each year the government spends billions fighting the War on Drugs. That money could instead be used more wisely.  One wonders then with these limited resources why cannabis, a non lethal plant,  continues to top their priorities list despite saying the administration would do otherwise?

We have spent trillions of dollars fighting this War on Drugs and what we have ended with is a broken country both financially and socially.  The government has criminalized a natural plant and taken a hardened stance against it despite the growing support nationally for legalization especially for medical reasons.  The government has continued to deny any benefits of cannabis and still stands by its classification of it as a scheduled 1 substance along side such hard drugs as heroin and deemed harsher than cocaine.  The government needs to wake up and realize that this war is not worth the cost and needs to end.   That will happen when we come together and make our voices heard.  We need to take this issue to the forefront and make people, make the president, address it.

In the last three years we saw more attacks from the federal government during the Obama administration than those of Presidents Bush and Clinton.  We saw federal raids on legitimate patients and their caregivers.  We saw taxpayer’s money wasted fueling this war on citizens.  We saw the federal government trample all over our rights in its search for criminals, millions who’s only crime was simple possession.

The laws that were passed soon after the 9/11 attacks, that were thought to be used only for the protection against terrorists attacks, have continuously been used in the War against Drugs and American citizens.  The laws have been used more in the search for drugs than for terrorists.  We need to stand up for our rights and demand that use of a plant should not constitute giving up our constitutional rights.

Currently schools across the country are in need of funding and money spent on the War on Drugs could instead go to make our schools excellent again.  By having smart regulations, correct zoning in cities and responsible use, children will not be effected in the manner everyone fears.  Instead of an underground network of criminals you would have a respected cannabis community that is not selling your children drugs. 

The argument for denying legalization for the sake of children may at face value have merit but when looking closer is ridiculous.  Parents need to take a leading role in teaching their children about cannabis, responsibility for choices and the pros and cons of drug use.  This issue of children’s use of cannabis or not is not a government decision but a parental one.  Parents play a huge role in their child’s influences, view towards drugs, access and more.  They should be the one making that decision to restrict cannabis or drug use.

By keeping cannabis illegal you keep it from being regulated which means that the product is out there with no one saying who can and can not have it.  Which also means that the person selling it doesn’t necessarily care how old your kid is when they try to buy pot only if they have the right amount of cash.  Alcohol by contrast, which consequently can be fatal especially to children and teens, is legal, regulated and not readily accessible to children.  Those worried about dispensary signs keep in mind that alcohol is advertised during national sporting events, local radio, TV, movies, billboards and more, giving children much more exposure.

In states across the US there is pending legislation for cannabis use with some aiming to take control and address the obvious problems caused by the War on Drugs.  The state of Washington has a great set up already in place for alcohol which would nicely accommodate the cannabis industry as well.  The citizens have gotten the necessary signatures validated for a legalization initiative for adults 21 and older to consume cannabis to appear before the voters in the November 2012 ballots. This has a great potential for a positive financial impact on the local and state economy allowing for more income, a much-needed relief especially in these times.

With all the facts stacking up against the War on Drugs and the hardened stance against legalization you have to ask yourself why are we continuing this costly war?  We need to address this issue and demand and end to this war.  We must urge our representatives to support rescheduling cannabis and repealing the devastating effects of prohibition.  The fight for legalization has been a long one but with quick action we can take hold of this opportunity and finally achieve our goals.

This guy can afford the War on Drugs (head of Sinola cartel)

Citizens Drive, Consume Alcohol, Use Tobacco And Take Prescriptions So Why Not Cannabis?

With all the heated debates over cannabis legalization going on around the country one would wonder why there is so much buzz over a plant.  Cannabis, specifically medical cannabis, has been at the forefront of discussions all around the country.  The federal government has continued its harsh stance against legalization despite the mounting evidence of its benefits, as backed up by the Vice President’s actions in Latin America this week.

We have looked at the issue of legalization in many lights but one way that has not been discussed is that of the individual.  Legally we are given responsibility for our actions and our bodies when we drive, consume alcohol, tobacco or prescriptions despite deaths each year.  Most of us are reasonably responsible adults who are depended upon to carry out many important tasks and make many important decisions including raising children.  Doctors are entrusted with our lives including cancer treatments and brain surgeries but they are not trusted to prescribe cannabis medicinally.

We are each supposed to be responsible for ourselves including the care of our bodies.  With this it would naturally be assumed that one would also have control of what goes into one’s body and what treatments or relaxations methods one chooses to use.  Americans range from lawyers, doctors, congresspeople, CEO s, mothers or any other law abiding citizens.  Why are we not trusted to make a responsible decision when it comes to cannabis?

This leaves one to wonder in regards to cannabis when did the government decide we were incapable of making such a personal decision?  When did they decide that they know more about whats better for each of us individually than we do ourselves?  It is insulting when you look at it in this light; that the government does not feel that each of us are capable of self-control.  As a parent I am insulted that they question my parenting abilities to raise a competent person capable of choosing wisely for themselves including refraining from letting cannabis “take over their lives” as the government wants us to believe happens all the time.  In reality each of us are capable of deciding how to, when to and how much to use cannabis if at all.  Each of us are capable of researching and talking with our doctors to see if cannabis is right for us.

The government allows drivers 16 and older to get behind the wheel of a car despite the harm drivers cause all across the nation.  There are over 40,000 deaths a year as a result of vehicles and their drivers.  People now more than ever are distracted with texting, videos, talking, browsing and more making them even more dangerous.

The government also allows for adults 21 and older to consume alcohol even though it causes over 750,000 deaths a year, domestic violence, rise in crime rates, child abuse, liver damage and many more tragedies.  The government feels that you can responsibly use and monitor your consumption of alcohol even though there are over 17 million alcoholics in the US.

The government allow adults 18 and older to use tobacco even after concrete evidence that it causes cancer and death not only to the user but those around them that are exposed.  Cigarettes have been linked to lung cancer, emphysema and more.  Each year it is estimated that 443,000 die from tobacco related issues.

Each year over 100,000 Americans die from medication by overdose, interactions or other medication related issues.  Citizens are entrusted with sometimes fatal medications monitored only by themselves and some doctor supervision.  Doctors on the whole still do not have sophisticated systems between themselves and pharmacies to prevent drug interactions or overdose.

There are many larger responsibilities we handle than a personal choice of using cannabis or not.  Even legally we are given much larger responsibilities so with that in mind the obvious question is why would using this plant in a responsible manner not be one our responsibilities as well?

Despite all the mounting evidence of the beneficial properties of cannabis and the fact there has never been a reported case of overdose, the government refuses to recognize that Americans are responsible enough and should have control over their decision concerning cannabis.  The decision to use or not to use cannabis is a personal choice and one that should be used with facts in hand and government nowhere in sight.

Although cannabis does not cause death, people still do.  People need to live up to that responsibility by using cannabis wisely and responsibly.  We shouldn’t have to prove anything to the government but if we are going to change things in this country being a good example is the first step.  This includes responsibly using cannabis and restricting access to children.

Educating others is the second step.  We need to show others that cannabis is not the evil drug that the government has made it out to be but instead a healing plant.  It can be used responsibly to wind down at the end of a long day much like wine or beer or in more potent version medicinally for patients.  In the end this is just a plant and one that can be used naturally without changing its form which can not be said for many other drugs legal or not.

Educating others is key to our success in legalization.  Others need to know the truth and I encourage all to go out and seek the truth.  Learn the real facts of cannabis.  Then contact your representative and ask for their support in repealing cannabis prohibition.  There are several pending legislation all over the country.  Help 2012 be a monumental year, one that we reach our goal!

American Medical Association 1937 Defense For Cannabis Use

Below is the defense given from the American Medical Association in 1937.

American Medical Association Opposes the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937

American Medical Association
Bureau of Legal Medicine and Legislation
Chicago, July 10, 1937
Hon. Pat Harrison
Chairman, Committee on Finance, United States Senate
Washington D.C.

SIR: I have been instructed by the board of trustees of the American Medical Association to protest on behalf of the association against the enactment in its present form of so much of H.R. 6906 as relates to the medicinal use of cannabis and its preparations and derivatives. The act is entitled “An Act to impose an occupational excise tax upon certain dealers in marihuana, to impose a transfer tax upon certain dealings in marihuana, and to safeguard the revenue therefrom by registry and recording.”

Cannabis and its preparations and derivatives are covered in the bill by the term “marihuana” as that term is defined in section 1, paragraph (b). There is no evidence, however, that the medicinal use of these drugs has caused or is causing cannabis addiction. As remedial agents, they are used to an inconsiderable extent, and the obvious purpose and effect of this bill is to impose so many restrictions on their use as to prevent such use altogether. Since the medicinal use of cannabis has not caused and is not causing addiction, the prevention of the use of the drug for medicinal purposes can accomplish no good end whatsoever. How far it may serve to deprive the public of the benefits of a drug that on further research may prove to be of substantial value, it is impossible to foresee.

The American Medical Association has no objection to any reasonable regulation of the medicinal use of cannabis and its preparations and derivatives. It does protest, however, against being called upon to pay a special tax, to use special order forms in order to procure the drug, to keep special records concerning its professional use and to make special returns to the Treasury Department officials, as a condition precedent to the use of cannabis in the practice of medicine. in the several States, all separate and apart from the taxes, order forms, records, and reports required under the Harrison Narcotics Act with reference to opium and coca leaves and their preparations and derivatives.

If the medicinal use of cannabis calls for Federal legal regulation further than the legal regulation that now exists, the drug can without difficulty be covered under the provisions of the Harrison Narcotics Act by a suitable amendment. By such a procedure the professional use of cannabis may readily be controlled as effectively as are the professional uses of opium and coca leaves, with less interference with professional practice and less cost and labor on the part of the Treasury Department.

It has been suggested that the inclusion of cannabis into the Harrison Narcotics Act would jeopardize the constitutionality of that act, but that suggestion has been supported by no specific statements of its legal basis or citations of legal authorities.

Wm. C. Woodward,
Legislative Counsel {American Medical Assn}


 

Why We Should Pay Attention….At Least Some Of The Time

I remember as a child my grandpa talking with me about the politics of the U.S. and around the world.  I remember him rattling off different names of important people and all the scandalous things happening at the time.  My grandfather was born in 1938 and has seen a lot change in this world.  He’s followed politics longer than I have been alive and yet this passionate subject, for him, did absolutely nothing for me and felt more like a foreign language.  Once I moved out on my own and got my first real taste of freedom I thought I was free to do as I pleased.  I continued that blissful thought until my late twenties where I discovered cannabis.

I went through life not paying any attention to what was going on in politics because it wasn’t effecting me.  Then I started getting blinding intense pain headaches.  I went through a series of doctors, specialists, tests, machines, naturalists, chiropractors, medications, diets and supplements as well as a few other treatments.  For 4 years I sought out a treatment, a cause and a relief from the pain!  I subjected myself to all kinds of different prescriptions some that made my brain feel like it was on fire, made my body numb and on one occasion a near blackout on I-5 in the middle of Seattle from one drug that was supposedly safe.

It was then while at a party I discovered cannabis and all its natural benefits.  After finding cannabis I finally found relief.  I found something that not only took away the pain but lifted my spirits.  In one aspect it was a huge relief that I was not looking at a life where I had to constantly remind myself not to think of the pain always keeping myself busy to distract myself.  In the other aspect cannabis’ natural compounds helped with the depression that set in from being in pain for 4 years.  It really was a prayer answered.

I was fortunate enough to live in a state that had legalized medical marijuana so I was able to obtain a doctor’s recommendation that allowed me to purchase or grow cannabis.  It wasn’t until I walked into my first dispensary and started really talking to the cannabis community that I realized I actually needed to pay attention to politics.  Having control over your treatment, over your medication is priceless.  Having an option that is not fatal, that is natural and affordable is something everyone should enjoy.

Before legalization patients had to obtain their cannabis from the streets or risk growing it themselves.  If you buy on the black market you do not always have control over what you get and typically can not ask what strain it is, does it have molds, pests, chemicals or if its organic.  The streets also do not care if you are 37 or 15 only if you have cash.  On the other hand if a patient decides to grow they risk life as they know it.  If they are caught citizens face all kinds of situations from large legal bills, jail or prison time, losing their kids, job, house or assets as well as a stigma from society being labeled as a criminal.  Even being raided by the police is very tramatizing to the family as they typically break down the door and treat you like armed drug lords, drawing their weapons on your family.

This is why Californians passed prop 215 and later SB420.  This is just one reason why its important to at the very least check in on politics and whats going on in the world at least once in awhile.  While I was out searching for a cure to my pain trying all different kinds of legal chemical narcotics millions of Americans were being shuffled through the justice system for using, possessing or growing a plant.  Even after those two legislation were passed California patients are still having issues from the government with 2011 proving to be an aggressive year for the federal raids on patients.  

It wasn’t until I started researching cannabis that I suddenly realized we are not free at all.  When the government dictates what your medical treatment is and is not instead of you and your doctor, when they take your freedom of choice away that is not freedom and we need to ask ourselves “How can we stand by and allow it to happen?”  We as citizens need to come together and demand our freedom back.  It seems a little comical, if not for all the appalling tragedies, that we are fighting for our right to use a natural plant, one that has been used safely throughout the world for thousands of years.

I will probably never be like my grandfather rattling off names like baseball stats but I have learned to pay better attention to whats going on around me.  Financial crisis, unrest among the people in countries all over the world, everyday living prices soaring, budget cuts are everywhere and raids and arrests for simple possession of a plant are abundant.  2012 is a year to pay attention and get involved.  This year we could seize the opportunity to educate others and push for legalization and an end to this failed, immoral and unconstitutional War on Drugs.  it is time we take back our choice, our freedom, our government!  Contact your Representative or the White House and tell them its time for a real change.  Spread the word Legalization is on the horizon!

Breaking News: CO Legalization Ballot Initiative Likely To Be On November Ballot

CO: The proponents of a Colorado initiative to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol turned in more than 14,000 additional voter signatures Friday in a last bid to qualify for the November ballot. The initiative needs only 2,400 valid signatures to qualify, meaning a whopping four out of five signatures handed in would have to be invalidated to keep the measure off the ballot.

The campaign had earlier turned in 159,000 signatures, nearly twice the 86,000 needed to qualify. But on examining the signatures, state election officials found that nearly half were invalid, an usually high percentage.

Other similar initiatives are in the works across the country.  To get involved contact your representative and urge them to support the end of cannabis prohibtion.

It Is Time, This Is Our Moment

Throughout history there are those moments in time that forever change our course.  Great moments where heroes stood up, fought back, and changed our destinies.  Many led ordinary lives but in that moment found the courage to do what’s right even in the face of adversity.

I believe we are at a very unique point in time.  All over the globe are seeing people wake up to the idea of a more involved society, one that gives them a voice.  We are starting to see the corruption that has been allowed to take hold.  Thanks to instant and world-wide communications we all can share an abundance of information.  The message is clear: People want freedom!

The thought of freedom of self is spreading.  People realize they have a choice.  They can be free to be responsible for themselves and their government.  With God-given free will people are seeking out the truths.  One truth that has frequently come into the spotlight, all over the globe is cannabis.  People are starting to see through the “reefer madness” and seek out the truths not only of its healing powers but of its actual harms.

The U.S. government has wasted trillions of tax-payer’s dollars pursuing a plant put here on earth for humans to use.  Beyond all its myriad of health benefits including exciting research pointing towards curing cancer, cannabis in its natural form can be looked at in the same light as drinking a beer or having a glass of wine.  Many Americans drink at the end of their day to unwind and relax from the day’s activities.  Millions of Americans use cannabis in the same way including using forms such as oils, juices, edibles and tinctures.

It is time to start taking a more serious look at what the real dangers are of cannabis prohibition.  Cannabis does not cause death, is more beneficial and is less harmful than alcohol which is a legal drug for Americans 21 and older.  We need to look at the practicality of prohibition on a national level. This is a serious issue that has devastating effects on millions of Americans.  An issue that breaks up families, bankrupts countless people, destroys American rights, costs trillions of tax-payer dollars and ruins society demands that we take a serious look at this situation and what its doing to this country.

These are the moments that history is made of.  Moments that show of courage and strength.  Times were we came together and fought back.  We need to make our voices heard loud and clear: Its time to talk about the end of prohibition!  We need to tell our representatives that its time to reschedule cannabis and repeal the prohibition.  We need to educate others on the truths.  When people see the truth we will have freedom.  This is our moment will you have the courage to change history?

Why the Prohibition of Cannabis Should End

We are witnessing the emergence of an oppressed part of society.  A community that had repeatedly been laughed at and pushed aside.  But in the last decade we have seen many breakthroughs and milestones reached.   We have also seen a very aggressive push back from the government on the fight for legalization.

The United States was attacked on Sept. 11, 2001 and since then laws and law enforcement agencies have changed.  Many expected changes but we did not expect our liberties to be eroded so much.  We have seen the militarization of local law enforcement increase with urgency.  We have seen the actions of these agencies change.

No community recognizes this more, surprisingly, than the cannabis community.  In 2011 alone thousands received threat letters from the DOJ.  Families, patients and caregivers were violently raided even though they were complying with state law.  Much of the legislation that was aimed at terrorists were actually used on Americans in the War on Drugs.  This costly war that has been going on for decades is not only a complete failure, it has misinformed millions and destroyed society.

They have squandered trillions of tax-payer dollars on this War on Drugs.  They have not only created a black market but allowed it to flourish.  Prohibition of alcohol created the rise in organized crime and prominent figures like Al Capone.  We saw prices go up, prescriptions for alcohol increase and speakeasies or clubs abound.  We have seen the same thing happen for over 75 years with cannabis with more recent increase in doctor recommendations, dispensaries in legal states and the head of a drug cartel listed on Forbes fortune 400 list.

With alcohol prohibition we saw a quicker end but we still saw the devastating effects it had in a short time.  We have had a longer period of time to take a look at the societal, emotional, economic, medical, environmental and many other impacts of prohibition and legalization.  For over 75 years we have seen families torn apart, parents lose children, people lose their wealth, their battle with their illness or their freedom.  We have seen the government tell us how cannabis is just as bad a heroin, worse than tobacco, alcohol and cocaine.  They have told us that cannabis holds no medical value.

With today’s access to information from all over the world and from many different sources many people should quickly see through the many lies of reefer madness.  There are countless medical studies backing up the medical potential of cannabis.  Last year the cannabis plants sativa and indica were genetically mapped enabling science to pinpoint the cannabinoids necessary to start using it as a therapy and cure.

With so much new data discovered, exciting breakthroughs on the horizon and the improved knowledge of society we too will see an end to cannabis prohibition.  Prohibition does not make sense as a policy or as a way to control society.  People are born with God-given free will and should be allowed to exercise it.  2012 can prove to be a momentous year if we make our voices heard.  Contact your representative today in support of legalization, rescheduling and responsible regulation.

How Technology and Medicine Are Coming Together To Legitimize Cannabis Use

In the last decade alone we have seen many advancements in technology as well as medicine.  We have seen the cell phone and subsequently smart phones and tablets held in the hands of the masses.  We have seen the access to information through use of the internet become available to the majority of the world even to far reaching places.  We have witnessed the advances in technology spill over to other industries such as medicine enabling breakthroughs.

Today with the help of technology the science, medical, technology and cannabis community are coming together.  We see doctors and scientists sharing information and ideas working collectively to cure and develop better therapies.  We see more informed patients who are working with doctors that have more access to their medical treatments (with electronic files implemented) helping to avoid the hundreds of millions of Americans that are sent to the hospital from drug reactions.

We have seen the technology that doctors use advance quickly enabling for a more pinpointed understanding of the ailment or even a patient’s specific body.  We have technology today that allows for the DNA sequencing of a cancer tumor, human and, thanks to Kevin McKernan and his team; cannabis Sativa and Indica.

In the Czech Republic they have been making advancements in the use of cannabis for medical use.  At the Konopi Je Lek (Cannabis Is Medicine) Clinic they have been working on exact strain-dependent therapeutic dosages of THC, CBD and CBN.  With the mapping of the cannabis plant along with the ability to map a human we can potentially have a quick way to match the right Cannabinoids for their particular ailment which is very exciting news.

There are millions of Americans that use cannabis in conjunction with their medication or instead of.  Many who know that cannabis works for them may not actually know why.  With the advancements in technology and medicine giving us those answers it is also making way for us to be able to better understand and therefore apply this for better therapy results.  Currently it can at times be a guessing game when trying to find the right strain or combination thereof when using cannabis therapy.  In the future you could make tinctures customized for your body.

Technology, Medicine, Science and Cannabis Community are showing people that cannabis therapy is beyond just the smoked version that comes up so frequently in debates.  Today’s cannabis therapy is far more advanced.  With British pharmaceutical products such Sativex (cannabis plant derived non-synthetic) that are seeking FDA approval it lends even more creditably to the medical uses of cannabis.  Many can see the future of cannabis as a therapy that will have legitimacy and will be taken seriously.

Just a few months ago we saw national support for medical legalization at 77%.  With more credible information available to the masses we see a shift in perception.  16 states along with D.C have enacted medical marijuana laws as well as several other states that have medical initiatives; with Washington, California and Colorado’s initiatives calling for legalization for adults over 21.

With the nation hurting financially it is time to look at our priorities.  So far the government has spent over $2 trillion on the war on drugs that has proven to be futile.  We need to look at reform and especially rescheduling cannabis.  This will only be accomplished if the people speak up.  We need to recognize that cannabis has medical value and that it should be decision made between a patient and doctor not the government.  Contact your local representative today and express your support for rescheduling and responsible legislation.  Many states have groups like NORML and ASA that are working on legislation so be sure to see if there is a current proposal in your state.  With everyone coming together we can see a bright future for the cannabis community as well as the nation.

Is A Win On the Horizon For the Cannabis Community?

When our parents took a stand against the government, the establishment, they had to grab the attention of the media to be heard.  They protested, burned bras and held demonstrations.  They too experienced police brutality but much of that was not covered.  They lived in a time when their generations was going through a transformation, a revolution.  As we look around today its hard not to draw parallels with where we are today.  We see critical shifts in society that give us hope for the future.  Some of these changes can be attributed to parental influence, more availability of information and a growth in enlightened thinking and perception.

The older generations who were indoctrinated with reefer madness are decreasing and we are now seeing the baby boomer generation head into the golden years.  Older Americans are finding that cannabis has come a long way from the “hippie” days and can be beneficial with ailments they are faced with today.  Discovering new methods such as edibles, tinctures and capsules spark a curiosity and give credibility to medicinal value for them.

We start to see a new generation emerge from this earlier shift in thinking and perception of the world resulting in a much more open-minded group.  With this shift in thinking we see more acceptance of non-traditional thinking, lifestyles and medical treatment options.   Along with the parental influence we see a huge influx of influence from technology and the information it provides.  This emerging group of people can search out for themselves the truth about cannabis including medicinal value.  People can connect with others, share information and even look up published medical studies.

Alternative, in some aspects, have almost become the norm.  Even something as simple as a grocery bag, ten years ago, would mostly have been used by “hippies” but now, at least on the west coast, it has become the norm.  With more education about our food and our planet we see more people choosing organic.  We are also seeing a sharp rise in acceptance and use of alternative medicine.  Polls in 2011 showed support for medical marijuana by Americans at 77%.

In the last decade we have seen a national conversation about cannabis educate and enlighten countless people about the truths and fictions surrounding it.  We have seen 16 states and the District of Columbia enact medical marijuana laws and 6 states that have regulated legalization ballot initiatives underway for 2012.  With all this progress and exposure to the topic it has brought our society to a catalyst-like moment in history.  We see the struggle that has gone on in this country with prohibition for over 75 years.  This will not have the same outcome as earlier battles, this time is different.

The new life that has impassioned the movement and helped it to gain steam, especially in the last few years, has been remarkable.  We have farther to go and still need help from all of those who believe in their right of freedom of choice and free will.  Using our voice to stand up for whats right.  Just as we saw in earlier generations we too need to stand against the establishment and fight for our rights.  We should have a natural option.  The cannabis community has been ignored, has been laughed at, as we saw heightened last year fought with and now with hopeful hearts we hope to see a win on the horizon.

How the Government is Setting The Cannabis Community Up for Failure and How We Can Stop It

The U.S. has seen the cannabis industry booming in recent years much to the government’s dismay.  They have spread Reefer Madness, raided patients and dispensaries, threatened state government officials and much more.  In 2011 we saw the issue of medical marijuana and cannabis in general covered quite extensively in the mainstream media as well as online.

Federal law has put doctors, patients and state government officials in the middle of a chaotic mess.  Currently federal law dictates that marijuana is as harmful and addictive as heroin with no medical benefits. It is listed in the schedule 1 category from the Controlled Substance Act which is above other drugs like cocaine.  With the current federal law along with the aggressive actions of the D.O.J. towards California’s state medical marijuana program, the federal government has set the community up for failure.  State and city officials have been reluctant to stand up due to legal threats from the D.O.J.  Many have been too afraid to be caught in the middle of a legal mess.  This has left patients with an unregulated system.

Unfortunately the cannabis industry is still dealing with the black market, which brings along with it many problems.  One is that with the proliferation of legitimate dispensaries and business we also saw some that were just a cover for selling drugs.  In California, which has had a medical marijuana law on the books for over 15 years, we saw a large number of dispensaries open up in cities across the state.  Even smaller towns were not spared resulting in multiple shops opening up.

I personally visited several locations last year all over California and out of all my experiences more often than not they were uneducated pot peddlers, who rushed you in and out, instead of the informed caregivers many Californians had envisioned when they passed their compassion law.  I, thankfully, did find locations that were not only knowledgeable but had no problem in explaining to me each strain, how it could help my symptoms as well as any other questions I had.  I loved that they actually cared about what they were doing not only for me but the whole community.  The general public unfortunately does not see this side and that is a truly sad.

To those that were not involved in the cannabis industry or even had a clue one existed, were shocked to suddenly see so many shops pop up.  Along with the number inevitably came location issues.   There were reports of dispensaries opening up next door to daycares and schools were the smell of marijuana could be detected.  This of course put a black mark on the cannabis community as well in some cases shut it down all together.  In CA over 200 cities have banned dispensaries altogether.

What we saw first as our way to legalization has quickly gotten out of control and has threatened to destroy what many have worked so hard to achieve.  The government saw the opportunity to use the fear of people along with their lack of true knowledge about cannabis to shut down many cities across the state of California as well as other states.  As of today the D.O.J. has sent out many letters across the nation to city and state officials warning of aggressive actions to be taken.

Colorado has demonstrated forward thinking with the regulations they put in place.  Colorado’s system went a different route than California in saying that cannabis could be sold for profit.  What Colorado did was innovative in that they did not set up a guise of non-profit like California but heavily regulated the industry instead.  Now with local law enforcement and the state Medical Marijuana Enforcement division teamed up they can now weed out the legitimate businesses from the black market therefore avoiding harassment.  Many cannabis supporters welcomed it because as we have seen no regulations has led to chaos.

In 2010 there were 809 dispensaries, 321 infused product manufacturers and 1230 cultivators registered with the state of Colorado.  The state collected $7.34 million in licensing fees alone.  Although problems exist in the current laws and ideally we would like it legal for anyone this type of regulations, for now, is better than the alternative we see in CA.

With the booming cannabis industry we also saw the emergence of testing labs.  We not only got to see how much THC and CBD content a strain had but we also learned about important things like mold, disease and pest contaminates.  We quickly realized that although we love the freedom we currently have to run the cannabis industry it obviously needs regulations.  We need healthy, medical-grade (pest, disease and mold free) and a system that helps patients feel confident in their purchase.

If we can get responsible regulations, constructed by a partnership of the cannabis community and government, we will see a successful cannabis industry that could very well help save the budget in those states.  Most people today recognize that there are medical benefits to cannabis as well as it not being as harmful as those drugs it is currently listed with.  There is proposed legislation that has wide support calling for a rescheduling of cannabis so that states, and more importantly doctors and patients, can decided what is right for them.

Each of us, as citizens and as a person, have a duty to right wrongs.  For over 74 years we have seen the government tell us we cannot have safe access to a natural drug, one that has been used for thousands of years for hundreds of uses.  We each need to make a difference and stand up and say we will no longer stand for prohibition!  We need to reschedule cannabis and allow the states to decide.  This issue is a state issue and the 10th amendment should be respected.  Tell you representative today!

How Cannabis Prohibition Effects All of Us

Unraveling the web of lies and corruption tied to cannabis can be a very daunting task.  Its no wonder that the government has taken a sweeping action all across the board.  Political, racial, economic  status or geography can all play a role when the government attacks.  Many do not realize how they are impacted by the administrations view on cannabis.  Prohibition does not create a safer world, ironically it creates the opposite.

Americans love their vices with cannabis being a favorite choice for many but prohibition has made it tougher to obtain as well as intimidating with its stiff punishments.  The cost of the judicial process, incarceration, loss of jobs and all other residual effects is astounding!  These costs come at the taxpayer’s expense.

Americans instead have turned to prescription drugs many that have serious side effects. They say that sham doctors give out recommendations for cannabis to anyone but that is exactly what is happening with prescription drugs.  Americans consume 80% of the worlds pain killers.  These drugs like hydrocodone or oxycodone are just as addictive as heroin and they are legally prescribed.  In 2008 15,000 Americans died from legal pain killers.

After learning about the benefits of cannabis many Americans have switched from prescription drugs to medical cannabis with improvements to their quality of life.  Its not just switching one addiction for another but rather finding a natural option for pain relief.  It can help with not only the pain but possibly help in curing the source.  Many are finding that their condition improves with cannabis use and they can stop taking multiple prescriptions.

Cannabis can be used in many ways.  Ingesting cannabis can be used for spiritual, social, or medical purposes.  Sharing a pipe with friends can be a very enjoyable experience and can bond people together.  Tribes have used it for thousands of years spiritually and socially.  For thousands of years the cannabis plant has been used to treat many illnesses.  The hemp seed also has nutritional  value and is some of the best protein you can consume; a great option for vegetarians.

The cannabis plant itself has many ecological benefits as well.  It can be grown Eco-friendly with all parts of the plant being used; some of which provide material for clothes, rope and paper.  It would be a good replacement for a paper source with cannabis yielding more paper from the same acreage as one would from trees. It also can be regrown in 6 months with no harm done to the earth.

The social and economic impacts reverberate throughout our communities.  We all suffer from the effects of cannabis prohibition even if you do not consume it.   When law enforcement is more focused on a plant they are less focused on more serious crimes. When a loved one is suffering from pain and they are faced with the choice of relief from cannabis or constant pain it will effect you.  Cannabis patients are not just hippies getting high all day.  They are someones son, daughter, mother, father, grandmother, someone’s loved one.  They are a free American citizen, some of which are faced everyday with pain.  We all deserve a choice in our treatment without fear from the government. Imagine instead a world where we would be free to grow our own Eco-friendly source of medicine, clothing material, paper, spiritual and social aid.  One where law enforcement and the judicial system were prosecuting actual criminals.

How the law is used to destroy equality and protect the powerful
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7NCoR1YEGgY&feature=share