Beyond national politics, and the on-going horror of the “shit stain,” a big gathering this week in Oakland for the Cannabis Business Summit and Expo, and the possible pot legalization due maybe on the California ballot in November.
Keynote speaker yesterday, California Lt. Gov Gavin Newsom, rallied the troops: ‘“We are not bystanders in the world we are living in. We have agency. This is happening on our watch,” he said, bemoaning the “abject failure (of) our war on drugs.” “It’s a war on the poor and it’s a war on folks of color, and it’s got to end. And the only way you end it is by going to the most destructive and the most ineffective component of that war, and that is the war on cannabis.”‘
We are seemingly the trend-setter for medical marijuana use, now on the road to ‘normal‘ relations. California was the first state to do so in 1996, leading to medical cannabis now being legal in 25 states and Washington, D.C. We had medical cannabis sales of $2.7 billion in 2015 — 62 percent of total sales in the whole US.
Still gathering signatures, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act would legalize Californians ages 21 and older to possess, transport and use up to an ounce of marijuana for recreational purposes. The Act would also allow people to grow six plants indoors.
And a first, California’s Democratic party has endorsed the ballot initiative — Democrat Jay Hubbell of Fresno has high expectations: ‘“I think it’ll pretty much be a slam dunk at the ballot box in the Fall.”‘
Despite that, Lt. Gov. Newson said don’t be over-confident, there’s still a lot of bullshit out there: ‘“You sit by and you do nothing; you’ve done everything by abdicating any responsibility for the world we live in. I don’t want to be that guy. I don’t want to be here on a panel of ex-politicians talking about what I woulda, shoulda done when I was in office.”‘
Our own North Coast U.S. Rep. Jared Huffman also okayed the measure earlier this month: ‘“The Adult Use of Marijuana Act is a necessary statewide reform that brings a billion-dollar industry out of the shadows and into a regulated market…The measure takes historic, first-of-its-kind steps to reverse the devastating environmental and water damage that has been done by illegal marijuana grows in our state. AUMA is not just good social justice and public health policy. It’s forward-thinking environmental reform as well.”‘
Reality also seems to approve — yesterday from the Washington Post:
Rates of marijuana use among Colorado’s teenagers are essentially unchanged in the years since the state’s voters legalized marijuana in 2012, new survey data from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment shows.
In 2015, 21 percent of Colorado youths had used marijuana in the past 30 days.
That rate is slightly lower than the national average and down slightly from the 25 percent who used marijuana in 2009, before legalization.
The survey was based on a random sample of 17,000 middle and high school students in Colorado.
“The survey shows marijuana use has not increased since legalization, with four of five high school students continuing to say they don’t use marijuana, even occasionally,” the Colorado health department said in a news release.
Another false-scary debunked…