Posts Tagged ‘marijuana news’
by Phillip Smith
Ohio could be a major medical marijuana battleground next year, as two different initiative efforts aimed at the November 2012 ballot are getting underway and a bill is pending in the state legislature. If Ohio climbs on the medical marijuana bandwagon, it would be the second Midwest state to do so, after Michigan, which approved it via the initiative route in 2008.
Two different initiative efforts are underway in Ohio, and there’s pending legislation, too. (image via Wikimedia)
A medical marijuana bill, House Bill 214, was introduced in April and has been assigned to the Committee on Health and Aging, but given that a decade’s worth of efforts to get a medical marijuana bill out of the legislature have yet to bear fruit, patients and advocates are moving forward with efforts to put the matter directly before the voters.
One initiative, the Ohio Alternative Treatment Amendment(OATA), was submitted to state officials Wednesday with more than twice the 1,000 signatures needed for the Attorney General to take the next step, approving the measure’s summary language. That will take place in 10 days.
Organizers are already setting their sights on gathering the 385,000 thousand valid voter signatures needed to qualify for the 2012 ballot. They have until May to turn them in.
The OATA would modify the state constitution to allow doctors in a bona fide relationship with patients to recommend medical marijuana and offers protections to patients, caregivers, and physicians alike. Patients or caregivers could grow up to 12 plants and possess up to 200 grams of processed marijuana. Multiple caregivers could store their product in a “safe access center,” and growers would be allowed to receive some compensation.
The second initiative getting underway, the Ohio Medical Cannabis Act of 2012 (OMCA) would modify the state constitution to establish government agencies to regulate medical marijuana “in a manner similar to the system that has successfully overseen vineyards and adult beverages,” according to OMCA press release. The campaign has yet to turn in the initial 1,000 signatures and win approval of its summary language, but has delayed because although it has already gathered more than 2,500, it is making final changes in the initiative’s language, said campaign spokesperson Theresa Daniello.
“Over the past few days, we’ve spent hours and hours Skype conferencing and going over the language,” said Daniello. “There were things like if the police came in with a warrant, we want to make sure they check with the medical marijuana enforcement division to make sure no one in that house is a patient.”
Getting it right was worth the delay, the Cleveland patient and mother of five said. “We’re not in a huge rush.” Organizers would probably hand in the signatures in a week or two, she added.
The OMCA would apply already familiar regulations, such as licensing, local option laws, and HIPAA patient privacy rules to medical marijuana. It would create an Ohio Commission of Medical Cannabis Control, which, like its counterparts in liquor control, would be charged with enforcing regulations and preventing diversion.
“The state of Ohio has a 77-year-old proven regulatory system under our liquor control laws that is one of the most effectively run in the country,” said Daniello. “There are only 470 liquor stores in the state, one per county, and one more for each additional 30,000 residents, and counties can opt out, like dry counties do for alcohol. It would be like that. It’s our goal that no patients be arrested,” she added. “We want it out of the hands of the police and handed over to the division. We don’t need guns, we need people who are educated.”
Under the OMCA, patients with qualifying medical conditions who get a physician’s recommendation would be able to possess up to 200 grams of medical marijuana and up to 12 mature and 12 immature plants. Patients would be registered with the state and provided with ID cards. Patients would be able to designate caregivers to grow for them.
“Both models are good,” said medical marijuana patient and activist Tonya Davis. “Ohio patients want a safer alternative. The models are different, but we figure that between the bill at the legislature, and the two initiatives submitting language, we can come up with something that serves patients.”
That would be great for patients like Chad Holmes, who underwent chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery for colon cancer, resulting in the removal of much of his digestive tract. He used medical marijuana to counter the side effects of nausea and severe pain, and found it to be the only medicine that allowed him to eat, maintain his strength, and function.
“Medical marijuana didn’t cure me, but it allowed me to survive the cure long enough for it to work,” he said. He has now been cancer free for over six years.
“Ohioans like Mr. Holmes face a terrible choice,” said Daniello. “They can choose to suffer with the horrible, debilitating effects of their illness, or risk arrest and years in prison for using medical marijuana to relieve their pain and suffering.”
But if either the legislature or the voters act, that dilemma for medical marijuana patients will be resolved. Look for a lot of action on medical marijuana in the Buckeye State in the next few months.
Money will be key. Peter Lewis, founder of Cleveland-based Progressive Insurance and a significant drug reform funder, issued a request for proposals for action on medical marijuana in May, but neither group appears to have offered one. Day said she thought Lewis had turned his attention elsewhere, while Daniello said her campaign would likely contact him later.
“We’re accepting support,” Daniello said. “We had less than a week to respond to Peter Lewis’s call for a request for proposals, and we decided that wasn’t enough time. We need to show that we can act in a professional manner before we go back.”
National presidential election year politics could help stir major funder interest, Daniello suggested. “2012 is a presidential year, and, as they say, as goes Ohio, so goes the nation,” she said. “If the proper people realize that, the funding will come in.”
It will have to for either of these initiatives to have a serious chance of making it to the ballot.
|Photo: CBS Detroit|
A new technology that analyzes the sweat from your fingertips could revolutionize the drug-testing market, purportedly providing onsite results in minutes with a test so sensitive it can even detect marijuana intoxication.
A great-grandmother in Sydney, Australia, has been arrested by police as a drug dealer.
The long-term administration of delta-9-THC, the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana, is associated with decreased mortality in monkeys infected with the simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV), a primate model of HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) disease, according to in vivo experimental trial data published in the June issue of the journal AIDS Research and Human Retroviruses.
Investigators at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center assessed the impact of chronic intramuscular THC administration compared to placebo on immune and metabolic indicators of SIV disease during the initial six-month phase of infection.
Researchers reported, “Contrary to what we expected, … delta-9-THC treatment clearly did not increase disease progression, and indeed resulted in generalized attenuation of classic markers of SIV disease.” Authors also reported that THC administration was associated with “decreased early mortality from SIV infection” and “retention of body mass.”
Clinical trials have previously documented that the short-term inhalation of cannabis does not adversely impact viral loads in HIV patients, and may even improve immune function.
For more information, please contact Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director, at: email@example.com. Full text of the study, “Cannabinoid administration attenuates the progression of simian immunodeficiency virus,” is available online here:
. Additional studies documenting the disease modifying potential of marijuana is available in the NORML handbook, Emerging Clinical Applications For Cannabis & Cannabinoids: Fourth Edition, available online at:
Image via link.
What’s good homies, this story is coming from the Cook County Jail in Illinois. April 23, 2010, 32 year old Heriberto Viramontes attacked two women as they were walking home on a Bucktown sidewalk on the 1800 block of North Damen. Now on June 11th of this year, his girlfriend was arrested minutes after leaving the jail after leaving some bud taped under the table in the visitor’s room! If that wasn’t enough stupidity by one person, more people were allegedly involved, including 50 year old Jerom Prusa, the guard who allowed this all to happen. For the full story click here.
According to the Chicago Tribune, Prusia was suspended pending an employment hearing and he resigned from the LaGrange Park Police Department, where he worked as an auxiliary officer. Prusa faces a slew of charges, especially after officers also found two knives in his uniform. Both Viramontes and Lundgren were charged with one count each of bringing contraband into a penal institution.
Alright, I usually believe everyone should enjoy herb no matter what. But this guy is pretty much undeserving of the good, let alone life for the things he did. These fools are stupid and all need to rethink they’re shit. Be about that paper, not jail.
Washington, DC — Less than two months after patient advocates filed a lawsuit compelling the federal government to answer a 9-year-old petition to reschedule medical marijuana, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) today made official its denial of the petition in the Federal Register. The Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis (CRC), which includes patient advocacy group Americans for Safe Access (ASA), filed the petition in 2002 seeking to reclassify marijuana from its current status as a dangerous drug with no medical value, but never heard from the federal government until it received the denial.
In its denial of the CRC petition, the government concluded that “marijuana has a high potential for abuse, has no accepted medical use in the United States, and lacks an acceptable level of safety for use even under medical supervision,” recommending that marijuana remain in Schedule I. “Although this superficially looks like a defeat for the medical marijuana community,” said Joe Elford, ASA Chief Counsel and lead counsel in the recent lawsuit. “It simply maintains the status quo,” Elford continued. “More importantly, however, we have foiled the government’s strategy of delay and we can now go head-to-head on the merits, that marijuana really does have therapeutic value.” ASA intends to appeal the government’s denial of the petition to the D.C. Circuit as soon as possible.
Notably, the petition denial was sent to legal counsel in the pending lawsuit on June 30th, one day after the Justice Department issued a memorandum to U.S. Attorneys upholding federal threats of criminal prosecution against local and state officials for attempting to pass and implement their own medical marijuana laws. “The federal government is making no bones about its aggressive policy to undermine medical marijuana,” said ASA Executive Director Steph Sherer, “And we’re prepared to take the Obama Administration to court over it.”
The denial also comes the same week as the International Cannabinoid Research Society (ICRS) is holding its 21st annual symposium in St. Charles, Illinois, just outside of Chicago. The symposium is sponsored in part by an array of pharmaceutical companies, the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), and ElSohly Laboratories, Inc., the federal government’s only licensed source of research-grade cannabis (marijuana) used in therapeutic studies. Currently, several pharmaceutical companies are asking the government to reschedule organically produced THC, the primary compound found in the marijuana plant, so they can sell a generic version of Marinol®, which is now made synthetically.
“The government cannot have it both ways, marijuana is either a medicine or it’s not.” continued Sherer. “If the government is going to sponsor a conference on medical marijuana, it should show the same deference to the millions of patients across America who simply want access to it.” ASA and its grassroots patient base has been urging President Obama since he took office to develop a comprehensive federal policy that would address medical marijuana as a public health issue.
Over the past few years since the CRC petition was filed, the two largest physician groups in the country — the American Medical Association and the American College of Physicians — both urged the federal government to review marijuana’s status as a Schedule I substance. In addition to new scientific discoveries occurring on a regular basis, numerous polls have shown that medical marijuana has the support of up to 80% of Americans..firstname.lastname@example.org
OC- Any hope that President Obama, a legendary pot smoker back at Occidental College in the late 1970s, might reclassify marijuana as a drug that has medicinal value just went up in smoke.
Nine years ago, for the third time since marijuana was prohibited more than a half-century ago, medical marijuana supporters led by Americans for Safe Access (ASA) asked the federal government to reclassify cannabis so that it’s not listed alongside heroin as a purely dangerous narcotic. Today, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) responded with a resounding “Yeah, right. What are you smoking?”
As negative as it is, the fact that the government finally rejected the petition is being called a victory of sorts by medical pot backers. For one thing, according to an LA Times story today, they had to go to a federal court to force the DEA to even respond at all. And now that the answer is no, they get to appeal the decision without further prevarication.
“We have foiled the government’s strategy of delay, and we can now go head-to-head on the merits, that marijuana really does have therapeutic value,” Joe Elford, an ASA lawyer, told the Times. Elford added that he wasn’t surprised by the decision given recent signs that the Obama administration, despite promising not to go after medical pot patients, had no such qualms about prosecuting large-scale marijuana growers.
“It is clearly motivated by a political decision that is anti-marijuana,” he said. Elford argued that despite the DEA’s stance, there is little debate nowadays that cannabis provides relief to cancer patients and other people struggling with terminal illness and chronic pain. “One of the things people say about marijuana is that it gives you the munchies and the truth is that it does, and for some people that’s a very positive thing.”
Although Elford said ASA plans to appeal the DEA’s decision, the odds aren’t looking good for such a tactic: the last two times the government refused to reclassify marijuana, the appeals failed in the courts
Cannabis Science Inc. (nasd otcbb:CBIS) a pioneering US biotech company developing pharmaceutical cannabis products, is pleased to announce that it has been contacted by Lynnice Wedewer, Ph.D. who is a 34 year multiple cancer patient survivor who has been cured of 7 of her 8 cancers in a major part because of medical cannabis. Dr. Wedewer wishes to share her story through Cannabis Science and help our case and education towards general acceptance of medical cannabis as a natural and viable treatment for cancer.
In 1979, Iowa passed a medical marijuana law which impacted five children suffering from cancer and who were placed into a cancer treatment program using medical cannabis under the supervision of the University of Iowa. Dr. Wedewer was one of those children and only 1 1/2 years ago did the law in Iowa finally change to allow these patients to finally speak out about their treatment and success stories in battling cancer with medical cannabis.
The Company is excited to feature Dr. Lynnice Wedewer’s cancer success story and testimonial in its upcoming documentary, along with other cancer survivors who were cured through the use of medical cannabis.
Dr. Wedewer runs a website http://www.lynnicewedewer.com where she provides her testimony, speeches, educational material, marijuana facts, interviews and documentaries, and other informational links regarding marijuana.
Dr. Robert Melamede, Ph. D., Cannabis Science Inc., President & CEO said, “These are exciting times to be part of a burgeoning medical marijuana movement and shedding light on patients who are telling their stories and opening up medical files to demonstrate the cancer curing power of medical cannabis. We are enthusiastic and hopefully that Dr. Lynnice Wedewer’s testimonial and cancer success along with other patient success stories, including profound medical evidence, will help to educate and finally open up the eyes of federal regulators to decriminalize medical cannabis; so more people’s lives can be saved by this natural herbal remedy and stop killing people with man-made pharmaceuticals.”
About Cannabis Science, Inc.
Cannabis Science, Inc. is at the forefront of pharmaceutical grade medical marijuana research and development. The Company works with world authorities on phytocannabinoid science targeting critical illnesses, and adheres to scientific methodologies to develop, produce and commercialize phytocannabinoid-based pharmaceutical products. In sum, we are dedicated to the creation of cannabis-based medicines, both with and without psychoactive properties, to treat disease and the symptoms of disease, as well as for general health maintenance.