MARIJUANA NEWS, ROOTS, AND CULTURE FROM HUMBOLDT AND MENDOCINO COUNTIES……….. ~EMERALD TRIANGLE NEWS AGENCY 2011~ EMERALD TRIANGLE, CALIFORNIA
Chaotic and Contradictory Marijuana Laws for Medical Marijuana Patients
The local, state and federal laws regulating medical marijuana in California grew even hazier with the Obama administration’s recent memo that threatened to prosecute anyone in the business of growing or supplying pot to patients.
The memo represented a significant departure from its sensible October 2009 guidelines that essentially assured dispensaries and patients that the federal government was not interested in going after operations that complied with state law.
Now the clinics are put in the untenable position of wondering whether the next knock on the door might be from federal agents.
The state of the law could not be more chaotic and contradictory. Marijuana remains classified as an illegal drug under federal law, period. California voters sanctioned the use of marijuana for medical purposes in 1996, but the state has all but looked the other way about where and how those dispensaries have been obtaining bulk quantities of the drug. The voter-approved initiative offered little guidance – other than expressly allowing cultivation for personal use – and elected leaders in Sacramento have largely avoided the supply question.
Some cities, notably Oakland, have tried to fill the void by legalizing large-scale indoor growing operations – but backed off when the U.S. attorney warned that it would be in violation of state and federal law.
Meanwhile, dispensaries have proliferated in many cities, classified ads for friendly doctors are abundant, and patient ID cards are not much more difficult to obtain than a box of Sudafed. Personal possession of less than an ounce of marijuana without a doctor’s recommendation has been reduced to an infraction, with a $100 fine.
California voters wisely rejected Prop. 19 last year, which would have legalized marijuana without sufficient controls and restraints. It would have made no sense to replace one form of chaos with another – and almost certainly would have attracted an aggressive federal response.
The feds are raising fair questions about whether a see-no-evil approach to the growing and supply chain has allowed cartels and other crime operations to exploit the lax oversight.
Perhaps the feds might be more willing to defer to state laws if they were more structured and realistic. But that would require a level of leadership that has been missing on this issue at the state level over the past 15 years.
"The prestige of government has undoubtedly been lowered considerably by the prohibition law. For nothing is more destructive of respect for the government and the law of the land than passing laws which cannot be enforced. It is an open secret that the dangerous increase of crime in this country is closely connected with this." Albert Einstein, "My First Impression of the USA," 1921
Ngaio Bealum joins us to discuss the effects of the West Coast medical marijuana crackdown, promoting May 20 Portland Mt. Tabor Theater show; Dave Bienenstock from HIGH TIMES with a preview of the newsstand issue and San Francisco's Medical Cannabis Cup; music by The Effinays
Live report from attorneys Lance Rogers and Michael Cindrich at the San Diego NORML protest of DEA abuse of Daniel Chong; highlights from the DFW NORML Cinco de Mota march; Rant: Debunking No on I-502 Misinformation, Again.
The Press Democrat, 25 Jul 2014 - ELK - Deep in a private Mendocino Coast forest, trees and brush give way to terraced clearings, miles of crisscrossing black irrigation tubing and campsites littered with cooking pans, empty food and beer cans, sleeping bags and toxic pesticides. They are the remnants of a marijuana garden where a multi-agency law enforcemen […]
The Tribune, 24 Jul 2014 - Our City Council here in Paso Robles couldn't decide last week whether to ban the delivery of medical marijuana to people within the city. The vote was a 2-2 deadlock. One councilman was absent. The delivery ban failed, but the city may still refuse to grant business licenses for delivering medical marijuana. The city attorney […]
Sacramento News & Review, 24 Jul 2014 - I hear Los Angeles has a farmers market for marijuana. How cool is that? - -Mr. Hella Green Jeans Way cool. Too bad the city of Los Angeles is trying to shut the market down.
The Chico News & Review, 24 Jul 2014 - Re "Hemp in our future" (Greenways, by David Downs, July 17): It would be a lot quicker for a potential hemp farmer to get into federal court in a declaratory judgment lawsuit and have the court declare the federal classification of marijuana as a controlled substance is arbitrary, unreasonable and unneces […]
SF Weekly, 23 Jul 2014 - HOOKED ON LEGALIZATION Three or four nights a week in San Francisco, a group of people shuffle into an anonymous meeting hall. The bitter scent of freshly stamped-out cigarettes follows them inside where, sitting on function-hall furniture with cups of cheap coffee in hand, they tell their war stories. Getting stoned and missing work […]
Sacramento News & Review, 24 Jul 2014 - Re "Cannabis lessons" (SN&R Editorial, July 17): Regarding your thoughtful July 17 Editorial, California needs to catch up with Colorado and Washington. California already has de facto legalization, but some California legislators want to restrict medical-marijuana access. This would be a backward mov […]
Seattle Times, 22 Jul 2014 - Ecosystem, Water Supply Threatened Impact on Yurok Is Worse Amid Drought WEITCHPEC, Calif. - The California National Guard on Monday joined more than a dozen other agencies to help the Yurok tribe combat rampant marijuana grows that have threatened the reservation's water supply, harmed its salmon and interfered with cultura […]
Los Angeles Times, 22 Jul 2014 - Yurok Leaders Had Pleaded for Outside Help, Saying Marijuana Cultivation Was Damaging Reservation. WEITCHPEC, Calif. - First, the out-of-state license plates came to the upper reaches of the Yurok Indian Reservation, followed by dump trucks of fertilizer and heavy equipment that punched roads into tribal land.
San Francisco Chronicle, 22 Jul 2014 - Your editorial ("Free medicinal pot - only in Berkeley," July 20) makes the assertion: "Reality check II: Regular pot can take a toll on motivation, judgment and attention to detail." That point should be rebutted by the likes of Michael Phelps, Steve Jobs, Barack Obama and Carl Sagan. I've done […]