Posts Tagged ‘new york city’

The New York Times Endorses Medical Marijuana For New York

New York Marijuana
By Morgan Fox

Earlier this week, I wrote about the trend in journalism to blame marijuana for the violent outbursts of murderous youth. While this unscientific blame game will probably continue in the foreseeable future, it’s nice to see that the primary target of my wrath in this instance, The New York Times, has redeemed itself.

On Wednesday, the juggernaut of journalism on the East Coast wrote an editorial urging New York’s Governor Cuomo to follow the lead of New Jersey and allow seriously ill New Yorkers to use marijuana to treat their illnesses. Coming from a publication of their size and prominence, this is a fairly significant statement, and hopefully one that will garner a lot of support for medical marijuana in the near future.

Here is the editorial in its entirety:

There is no good reason to deprive patients with cancer or H.I.V. or Lou Gehrig’s disease of the relief from pain or extreme nausea that could come from using marijuana.

Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, who once opposed his state’s medical marijuana law, has changed his mind, deciding earlier this month to allow six alternative treatment centers to begin dispensing the drug to those in need, possibly by early next year. Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York needs to change his mind as well.

Governor Cuomo said during his 2010 campaign that he opposed legalization of medical marijuana. Recently, he said he was still opposed but that he was “reviewing” the issue and “we’re always learning and listening, talking and growing. We hope.” It shouldn’t take much more personal growth to make the right call.

Governor Cuomo should ask Governor Christie about how he resolved his own doubts. Mr. Christie could explain how his law is the nation’s most restrictive and how the federal Justice Department has indicated that its agents will rightly direct their energies in New Jersey to go after big-time marijuana traffickers, not doctors or alternative centers helping the desperately ill.

Under New Jersey’s law, doctors can recommend that a patient suffering from a specific disease or condition use marijuana of limited strength. Patients cannot grow their own, and they can only purchase 2 ounces every 30 days. Physicians must register to recommend the marijuana use, and patients and caregivers must undergo background checks to get ID cards.

Mr. Cuomo should champion a similar and humane system and ensure that New York’s residents coping with illness have the same chance at relief.


Good recovery, NYT. Please keep it coming!

New York City Moms “Relaxing” With Marijuana

Normally trend pieces in the New York Post make me want to take a shower, but a recent story was much different. It seems that NYC moms are embracing the herb as a way to unwind after “juggling play dates, naptime, temper tantrums and PB&Js.” If you’re wondering why this is news then you’ve never read a trend piece, and if you’re not sure why we’re talking about it, then you’re not very familiar with HMJ. Read on to find out more about mommy marijuana anecdotes. Child-rearing has never looked this relaxing.

Ordinarily you could look for a stressed mom at the liquor store, but now you need not  look any further than your local weed dealer: “‘I think it’s a pretty common thing,’ confesses 33-year-old Erica (not her real name), mother to a 4-year-old daughter. ‘That’s how some mommies cope with stress.”’ We’re not sure that’s how ALL mother’s cope with stress, but in NYC it seems to be more popular–it still requires a pseudonym for the Post piece.

According to the most recent data, released in 2009 by the US Department of Health and Human Services, 16.7 million people over the age of 12 smoked pot at least once in the month prior to taking the survey, up 8 percent from the previous year. But the taboo of lighting up a joint when you’re a mom — especially with young children — persists, which is why the practice is still deeply under the radar; all of the mothers The Post spoke with did so on the condition of anonymity.

“I’ve never talked about it with my new-mom friends,” says Jennifer*, a Kensington, Brooklyn-based mother of a 1-year-old son, who is in her 30s. “I would never. I feel like the mom community is so judgmental. I would never broach that topic with anybody. I’m private about it.”

She enjoys a joint a couple of times a week, after work or on the weekends — sometimes after her son has gone to bed, and sometimes during the day, when he’s awake.

It’s not just the relaxing affects common with nature’s mommy munchie maker, it can also provide a silent communication device with a pre-talking infant, as Jennifer mentions, ”the pot…makes mom-and-baby time a whole different thing. I have had moments where I felt like I could communicate with him better, back when he wasn’t talking — we’d have a silent, eye-contact kind of conversation.’”

Well then!

It’s becoming so prevalent it’s even sprung up a group creatively called Moms for Marijuana.

The New York [state] chapter is just getting off the ground,” says Sarah Via, the organization’s communications director, a 50-year-old mother of two grown children (22 and 19) who’s been smoking for 30 years and lives in the upstate town of Hamlin. There’s no NYC-based group at this time, she says, but “we’re hoping.” The state chapter, which launched earlier this year, has fewer than 100 members, but “that will change soon,” says Via, who’s planning on launching a Facebook page for the group to recruit more moms, as many other states’ branches already have.

But there are some medical professionals who don’t agree with the marijuana over wine advocated by the mothers in the piece:

Dr. Howard Samuels, CEO of the Hills Treatment Center in Los Angeles, says pot can also be more dangerous because it doesn’t have the slow ramping-up option of a single glass of wine.

“You smoke marijuana, you get high,” he says. “There’s a difference. If you have one glass of wine or beer, it reduces a little anxiety. But you could drive — you’re not impaired. When smoking marijuana, you smoke it to get loaded.”

Either way, though, Dr. Samuels says smoking pot and parenting don’t mix. “I’m shocked that any parent would ever say that smoking pot while they’re playing with their kids is a healthy thing,” he says. “It makes me sick to my stomach. Are they retarded emotionally?”

Nicely put DOCTOR Samuels. But, the mother’s interviewed feel marijuana is more beneficial at battling stress then the ol’ stand by of Virginia Slims and Gin before 4.

But many moms insist that pot makes them feel less volatile than alcohol. “Wine drinking is fun,” says April Garland, 40, a new member of Moms for Marjiuana who lives in Burt, NY, and is mother to two daughters, 7 and 13. “But you tend to lose more inhibitions. People also tend to get more aggressive when they’re drinking.”

Marijuana just feels better as a relaxant, and mother’s think it’s actually helping their children in the long run.

Nancy goes further, arguing that smoking pot might actually reap benefits for the children, as well. “This is a very high-pressure place, and increasingly, the world at large is just a pressure cooker,” she says.

“Parents bear a large brunt of it, because raising children is nearly impossible. It’s a lot of stress. I [try] to relax as much as possible in whatever way is possible. Kids pick up on that stress and it’s bad for us — and it’s bad for them.”

I would argue in favor of raising your kids without anything that clouds your ability to think cogently, but I like to get high too, so maybe I’m not thinking so clearly. See what I did?

NYPD Only Arrests Minorities For Marijuana, Here’s How They Do It:

evil cop
by Scott Morgan

Since 1977, it’s been technically legal in the State of New York to carry around a concealed bag of marijuana weighing less than 7/8 of an ounce. But you could be forgiven for not knowing this, since getting popped for petty pot possession is easier in New York City than anywhere else on the planet.

It’s a monumental injustice that owes its costly continuation to one simple tactic: tricking people into committing the crime of displaying their marijuana in plain sight:

What’s happening is that disproportionate numbers of black and brown young men, ages 16 to 29, are being duped into publicly revealing their allowable marijuana and then being arrested, thereby gaining a criminal record, advocates say. Police officers will say, “Empty your pockets!” turning a routine stop into an arrest and a police record.

“In 2010 in New York State, there were 54,000 marijuana arrests … 50,000 of them came from New York City, and — surprise, surprise — from neighborhoods that primarily are black, Latino and low income,” says Kyung Ji Kate Rhee, executive director of the IJJRA. “It’s not like these individuals had a felony charge and marijuana happened to be an additional charge … You’re telling me that 50,000 had marijuana in plain view? Does that sound right to you? After that initial point of police contact, they trick you into turning out your pockets.”

The NYPD did not respond to requests for comment. (The Root)



Now this is where I get confused, because if arresting young black and Latino men for tiny little bags of marijuana were as important to me as it is to the New York Police Dept., I would be extremely pleased with these results and eager to take credit for them. It makes little sense to provide your officers with special training in how to make trivial arrests for petty crimes under legally-dubious circumstances if you aren’t going to be proud of the outcome.

Why not instead spend the $75 million that all of this costs on something that you’re at least willing to admit you’ve been doing? Surely they can think of something to do with those resources that will make sense to the public, something — anything! — other than a massive, utterly pointless exercise in transparent racism that plainly violates the spirit of the laws of the State of New York.

Please click here to send a message to Mayor Bloomberg that New York City’s senseless war on marijuana must be ended once and for all.

Artilcle From – Creative Commons Licensing

%d bloggers like this: