Vote for Cannabis Friendly Candidates in North Carolina this November

In North Carolina there is only one way we will be able to achieve any level of cannabis reform at the state level, that way is through our legislators in Raleigh.

Currently, the amount of legislators in office that are supportive of cannabis reform is pretty much nil. Zero. Nada. There are few representatives that are supportive currently but they can’t do anything by themselves. They need other supporters in Raleigh with them.

Click Here to View NORML’s  North Carolina Voter Guide

How do we achieve this goal of cannabis reform that we all supposedly hold so dear then if there isn’t anyone willing to change the laws from the inside for us? The answer is, and you’re gonna hate it, vote. We MUST vote, one district at a time, to increase the amount of legislators in Raleigh that support cannabis reform from just a handful of legislators to an abundance of legislators.

This isn’t going to happen “overnight”, or in one election cycle. This is going to take years to evolve but we must start now. There is nothing we can do about the past and how organizations like ours have tried to get the reform we want, but we can make an assertive effort to change the future.

I use this analogy all the time when I refer to the reform efforts here in North Carolina; this movement is like a car that’s ran out of gas. In …

14 Celebrities Who Have Talked About Smoking Weed

No matter which side of the debate you’re on, there’s no denying that marijuana use has become much less of a taboo topic than it once was. Research has proven that marijuana has medical benefits, including easing chronic pain, anxiety, and stress. And as states move to make medical and recreational use legal, weed is gaining mainstream acceptance. Some of Hollywood’s biggest celebrities are outspoken advocates for the legalization of marijuana and are helping to…

Source: https://www.cannabisculture.com/content/2018/10/04/14-celebrities-who-have-talked-about-smoking-weed/…

Canadian Cannabis Prohibition Predated U.S. Ban by 15 Years

Gerald Le Dain with John Lennon and Yoko Ono in 1969 (Photo by Peter Bregg/The Canadian Press)

Canada’s path to cannabis prohibition closely followed that of its southern neighbor. Like in the United States, a century ago cannabis was widely available in tincture form as a medication before being banned in a campaign that blatantly harnessed racism and xenophobia. Yet now Canada is legalizing coast to coast, starting October 17, while the U.S. federal government refuses to end its 80-year policy.

The Anti-Immigrant Roots of Canadian Prohibition

The Harrison Narcotics Tax Act of 1914, the first major anti-drug legislation in the US, was passed on a wave of anti-Asian hysteria. In Canada, the connection was even more blatant.

On September 7, 1907, a thousands-strong white mob of the Asiatic Exclusion League rampaged through Vancouver’s Chinese and Japanese district trashing shops and throwing some immigrants in the harbor. “Not a Chinese window was missed,” it was reported.

Business owners demanded compensation, and the deputy labor minister—William Lyon Mackenzie King, who later as prime minister led Canada through World War II—was dispatched to investigate. King was shocked to find that the claimants included (legal) opium merchants. Back in Ottawa, he wrote a report on the opium menace, which warned that the Asian drug was catching on with white women and girls.

Marijuana Legalization and Workplace Safety: A Short-Lived Hysteria

With 47 states and the District of Columbia permitting the use of marijuana or its extracts in some form, new questions concerning employers’ rights, lawful marijuana use by employees, and maintaining a safe workplace have been raised. The biggest issue? While it’s legal to possess and consume marijuana in several states, it’s still illegal under federal law, an inconsistency that has created some confusion for employers who are unsure how to address marijuana in the workplace from a policy perspective. This untenable situation puts millions of law-abiding and responsible adults at risk of losing their employment simply because of a THC-positive drug test.

Workplace Drug Testing

Urinalysis testing is the most common form of pre-employment and workplace drug testing, but because it only detects trace metabolites (inert waste-products) of past use of a wide range of substances, they fail to prove either impairment or how recently marijuana was consumed. This activity is particularly discriminatory in the case of marijuana, where such metabolites may be detectable for weeks or even months after consumption.

Surprisingly, there is no requirement for most private employers to have a drug-free workplace policy of any kind. However, there are a few exceptions such as federal contractors and safety-sensitive positions (e.g. airline pilots, truck and bus drivers, train conductors, etc.). Even employers who are required to maintain a drug-free workplace are not required to use drug testing as a means to enforce company policies.

Impairment Detection

New

California: Governor Signs Legislation Expunging Past Marijuana Convictions

Democrat Gov. Jerry Brown has signed legislation, Assembly Bill 1793, facilitating the review and expungement of hundreds of thousands of past marijuana convictions.

The new law requires “the Department of Justice, before July 1, 2019, to review the records in the state summary criminal history information database and to identify past convictions that are potentially eligible for recall or dismissal of sentence, dismissal and sealing, or redesignation pursuant to AUMA (the Adult Use Marijuana Act).” Prosecutors would have up to a year to either vacate the conviction or to reduce it from a felony to a misdemeanor.

An estimated half-million Californians are eligible for relief under the law. “Long after paying their debt to society, people shouldn’t continue to face the collateral consequences, like being denied a job or housing, because they have an outdated conviction on their records,” the bill’s sponsor, Assemblyman Rob Bonta, said.

Other states – including Delaware, Massachusetts, Maryland, Oregon, and Rhode Island – have enacted similar expungement laws following the passage of either marijuana decriminalization or legalization.

Governor Brown also took action on several other marijuana-related bills. Specifically, he vetoed Senate Bill 1127, which permitted certain students to access medicinal cannabis products on school grounds, and Assembly Bill 1996, which authorized the University of California’s Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research to cultivate marijuana for clinical trial research. The Governor also vetoed Senate Bill 829, which prohibited …

NORML Chapter Newsletter

Everyday NORML Chapters from around the country invest countless hours in advocating for meaningful marijuana law reforms on the local, state and federal level! Below is a brief rundown of some of their most recent accomplishments.

NORML Chapters Focus on Voter Registration and Education for Midterm Elections

“To help educate our members and supporters about candidates who are supportive of marijuana law reform efforts, NORML is working with “Smoke the Vote” to create state-level and congressional scorecards, similar to our Governor Scorecard, that outlines each candidate’s marijuana policy positions. Furthermore, several NORML chapters, like Arizona NORML and Texas NORML, have created their own regional voter guides for the 2018 midterm elections!”

Read more from NORML.org!

Follow NORML on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and become a member today!

Members of Arizona NORML Rate Lawmakers Before Midterm Elections

“Earlier in August, Mikel Weisser, executive director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws of Arizona, published a lengthy report card on the many candidates vying for a public office in 2018. Now that the votes are being counted and most of the races have clear winners, Weisser said he likes what he sees.”

Read more from the Phoenix New Times!

Follow Arizona NORML on Instagram and Twitter and become a member today!

Members of El Paso NORML Focus on Education in Advance of Midterm Elections

“Right now, we’re working with local politicians

Student’s Suspension for Smelling of Pot Provides Whiff of What’s Ahead for Schools After Legalization

On the first day of school, Tony stood outside the main office, in a lineup of students, waiting to pick up his timetable. He left with a three-day suspension slip. The reason? A vice-principal at Monsignor Percy Johnson Catholic Secondary School in Rexdale smelled marijuana. “I was stunned,” recalled the 16-year-old, whose real name the Star agreed to withhold. “I said, ‘I haven’t been smoking’ … I asked her if she wanted to check my…

Source: https://www.cannabisculture.com/content/2018/09/30/students-suspension-for-smelling-of-pot-provides-whiff-of-whats-ahead-for-schools-after-legalization/…

Student’s Suspension for Smelling of Pot Provides Whiff of What’s Ahead for Schools After Legalization

On the first day of school, Tony stood outside the main office, in a lineup of students, waiting to pick up his timetable. He left with a three-day suspension slip. The reason? A vice-principal at Monsignor Percy Johnson Catholic Secondary School in Rexdale smelled marijuana. “I was stunned,” recalled the 16-year-old, whose real name the Star agreed to withhold. “I said, ‘I haven’t been smoking’ … I asked her if she wanted to check my…

Source: https://www.cannabisculture.com/content/2018/09/30/students-suspension-for-smelling-of-pot-provides-whiff-of-whats-ahead-for-schools-after-legalization/…

NORML Supports Florida Voting Restoration Amendment

NORML is pleased to support the grassroots Voting Restoration Amendment campaign in Florida, run by Second Chances Florida. Florida remains one of only four states with a lifetime ban on voting for people with past felony convictions, even after they have completed their full sentence – including any probation, parole, fines, and restitution. We at NORML believe in second chances, and it is vital that voters have the opportunity to restore voting eligibility for those who have served their time and paid their debts.

Sign up to make phone calls to Florida voters on October 1st!

Can’t make calls Monday? Click here to sign up to volunteer before the election. 

This statewide ballot measure, organized by the grassroots group Second Chances Florida, seeks to restore the voting eligibility of Floridians with felony convictions after they complete all terms of their sentence, including parole or probation. The amendment would not apply to those convicted of murder or sexual offenses, who would continue to be permanently barred from voting unless the Governor and Cabinet vote to restore their voting eligibility on a case by case basis.

“Ensuring that all Americans have the eligibility to vote is crucial to the wellbeing of our democracy and is the only way that we will have elected officials in office that truly represent the will of their constituents. There is no legitimate reason that, after serving their time and paying their debts, to continue to

Legalization: Is it Working?

We as advocates of marijuana law reforms have never been in a better position than we are today to further our cause. Prior to states like Colorado, Washington, Oregon, Nevada, and others, legalizing and regulating marijuana, there was very little data to support our arguments to end marijuana prohibition. But, things have changed.

So, is the legalization and regulation of marijuana working? Of course it is, but we must be able to articulate why it’s working to be successful in our efforts. We can start by looking at some of the data regarding the impact marijuana legalization is having on public health and safety. Study after study published by the Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, the National Academies of Sciences, the Centers for Disease Control, the Journal of Adolescent Health and the American Journal of Public Health are providing us with all the information we need to make fact-based, data-driven arguments in support of ending marijuana prohibition.

Regardless if you’re looking at state-level data related to crime, teen access and use or the decline in opioid use, hospitalizations and overdose, the legalization and regulation of marijuana is having a positive impact. And this is no longer our opinion; it’s fact, backed by legitimate research and data. The information is there. We no longer have to speculate about the potential impacts marijuana legalization will have on public health and safety, and other areas of concern. We can now

Weekly Legislative Roundup 9/28/18

Welcome to the latest edition of NORML’s Weekly Legislative Roundup!

This week, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration placed CBD medication Epidiolex in Schedule V, the least restrictive category of the Controlled Substances Act. The move does not apply to CBD itself or other non-FDA-approved extracts containing it.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection released an official statement confirming the federal government’s policy of banning Canadians who work or invest in the marijuana industry from entering the country.

The U.S. House Rules Committee blocked yet another marijuana measure from advancing, this time an amendment to remove the 280E tax penalty on cannabis businesses.

At the state level, Pennsylvania state Rep. Jake Wheatley filed a bill that would legalize the possession, use, and retail sale of adult use marijuana and also expunge certain marijuana convictions.

New Jersey’s Senate president said he anticipates a vote on marijuana legalization legislation on October 29. The bill still has yet to be introduced.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) announced two new marijuana legalization listening sessions in addition to the 15 that had already been scheduled. See the full list of sessions here. Cuomo also signed a bill into law, adding acute pain management to the list of conditions for which medical cannabis can be recommended as an alternative to opioid use.

California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) vetoed a bill to expand marijuana research. But he signed bills allowing local governments to approve temporary marijuana events …

Chart: The History of U.S. State Marijuana Ballot Initiatives


On the 2018 Ballot

Mormons Oppose Marijuana Initiative in Utah Despite History of Cannabis Use

Michigan Is Poised to Become the 10th State to Legalize It

Dueling Initiatives in Missouri Likely to Confuse Voters

Recreational Legalization on the North Dakota Ballot

If you enjoyed this Freedom Leaf article, subscribe to the magazine today!

The post Chart: The History of U.S. State Marijuana Ballot Initiatives appeared first on Freedom Leaf.

Source: https://www.freedomleaf.com/state-marijuana-ballot-initiatives/…

Ontario Government to Allow Pot Smoking Wherever Tobacco Smoking Allowed

Ontario residents will be able to smoke recreational cannabis wherever the smoking of tobacco is permitted, the Progressive Conservative government said Wednesday, loosening rules established by the previous Liberal regime. The government will also not put a cap on pot shops when it starts licensing and regulating the province’s private cannabis retail marketplace, and municipalities will have until January to opt out of hosting the stores. The details were announced by Ontario Attorney General Caroline…

Source: https://www.cannabisculture.com/content/2018/09/27/ontario-government-to-allow-pot-smoking-wherever-tobacco-smoking-allowed/…

DEA Reclassifies Plant-Derived Marijuana Medicine To Schedule V

Epidiolex, a prescription medicine containing a standardized formulation of plant-derived cannabidiol (CBD), has been reclassified today by the US Drug Enforcement Administration to Schedule V — the lowest restriction classification available under federal law. The US Food and Drug Administration had previously approved the product in June for the explicit treatment of two rare forms of severe epilepsy: Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome. It is the first botanically-derived medicine from cannabis to receive US market approval.

A spokesperson for the DEA affirmed that the change is only specific to Epidiolex, and does not amend the schedule I status of either whole-plant cannabis or CBD — stating: “As of right now, any other CBD product other than Epidiolex remains a Schedule I Controlled Substance, so it’s still illegal under federal law.”

The drug’s manufacturer estimates that physicians will likely be able to begin prescribing the medicine within six weeks. An annual prescription is anticipated to cost patients $32,500.

Commenting on the scheduling change, NORML’s Deputy Director Paul Armentano said: “The DEA’s rescheduling of this plant-derived medicine provides an additional option to patients seeking the therapeutic benefits of cannabis. However, it remains to be seen to what degree physicians will be comfortable prescribing this new agent, and whether most patients can feasibly afford it.”

He added: “We anticipated that Epidiolex will be the first of many potential FDA-approved medicines based on the cannabis plant. These are welcome alternatives. But these …

North Dakota Is Ready To End Criminalization

Last week, I did something that I had never done before: I traveled to North Dakota.

This summer, the grassroots group LegalizeND successfully collected enough petition signatures to place a statewide marijuana legalization initiative (Measure 3) on this November’s general election. If enacted in November, North Dakota would become the tenth state — and by far the most politically conservative one — to legalize the adult use of marijuana in the United States.

And as if I need to tell you, that would be a game-changer in our country.

Measure 3 has a sort of beauty in its simplicity. Thirty days after passage, it removes the criminal and civil penalties for adults over the age of 21 to possess, privately consume, and privately cultivate personal possession of marijuana. Unlike initiatives in other states, that often possessed robust and sometimes overly-complicated and exclusionary regulatory schemes for the licensing of commercial marijuana market, Measure 3 focuses on the individual consumer — not commercial businesses. In short, it halts new arrests and expunges past convictions. It’s that simple.

If lawmakers in the future wish to enact specific regulations licensing and taxing the marijuana market, that decision will be up to them.

But can Measure 3 win this November? I went to North Dakota to see for myself.

The fundamentals are strong. In 2016, voters passed a medical cannabis regulatory program with 64% of the vote. But then the legislature gutted the law, rewrote

Cities Across Georgia Continue to Ease Penalties for Marijuana Possession

Following the lead of municipalities around the state, the City Council of Kingsland, Georgia, voted to approve a new ordinance to ease penalties for possessing small amounts of marijuana.

“I’m glad to see the Kingsland City Council unanimously approve this ordinance. They join Clarkston, Atlanta, Savannah, Forest Park, South Fulton and Fulton County in enacting sensible marijuana ordinances here in Georgia,” said Tom McCain, executive director of Peachtree NORML.  

Citing concerns of racial profiling and the effects of the black market regarding teen access and use, Councilman Mike McClain was one of the most vocal proponents during Monday’s meeting to discuss the proposal.

“There is a definite amount of racial profiling with the outdated law. We need to be on the right side of history, and I want to do the right thing,” said Mclain. “We are a small town, but we are not afraid of change when it goes to correctly police our community.”

Read more here: https://www.allongeorgia.com/camden-local-news/kingsland-city-council-passes-relaxed-marijuana-rule/

As state lawmakers around the country continue to drag their feet on marijuana law reforms, municipalities are taking matters into their own hands. As a result, more than 50 localities in a dozen states have adopted municipal ordinances to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana.

“While they cannot change Georgia Law, they can indeed lower penalties for simple possession, and in doing so, send a message to the General Assembly that it needs to follow suit at the state-level,”

Mormons Oppose Marijuana Initiative in Utah Despite History of Cannabis Use

Mormons with Mexicans in Northern Mexico, 1908

In 1885, the prophet and president of the Mormon Church, John Taylor, purchased about 100,000 acres of land in Mexico—in Chihuahua and Sonora, to be exact, some 200 miles south of the US border. More than 300 polygamous Mormon families from Utah migrated south to settle the land and to proselytize (even today you see the traveling twosomes of fresh-faced young men in their white shirts, ties and black name tags) and, many theorize, to preserve the practice of polygamy.

At the time, Mormon polygamists were being jailed and having their property seized. Utah itself was denied statehood by the federal government to halt the practice. Former presidential candidate Mitt Romney is descended from the Mexican settlements; his father, George, and grandfather, Marion, were born in Colonia Dublán, Mexico, in 1907.

But in 1910, many who had settled in northern Mexico began an exodus back to Utah due to anti-American sentiment fueled by the Mexican Revolution. Some say they returned with a local plant introduced by the natives: cannabis.

The Mormon Church, formally known as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (LDS), were and still are infamous for their teetotaler ways and as abstainers of vices of all kinds; hence, they didn’t look kindly on the brethren partaking of the plant, viewing it as a violation of Mormon scripture from the “Doctrine and Covenants,” section 89 (D&C 89), …

Mormons Oppose Marijuana Initiative in Utah Despite History of Cannabis Use

Mormons with Mexicans in Northern Mexico, 1908

In 1885, the prophet and president of the Mormon Church, John Taylor, purchased about 100,000 acres of land in Mexico—in Chihuahua and Sonora, to be exact, some 200 miles south of the US border. More than 300 polygamous Mormon families from Utah migrated south to settle the land and to proselytize (even today you see the traveling twosomes of fresh-faced young men in their white shirts, ties and black name tags) and, many theorize, to preserve the practice of polygamy.

At the time, Mormon polygamists were being jailed and having their property seized. Utah itself was denied statehood by the federal government to halt the practice. Former presidential candidate Mitt Romney is descended from the Mexican settlements; his father, George, and grandfather, Marion, were born in Colonia Dublán, Mexico, in 1907.

But in 1910, many who had settled in northern Mexico began an exodus back to Utah due to anti-American sentiment fueled by the Mexican Revolution. Some say they returned with a local plant introduced by the natives: cannabis.

The Mormon Church, formally known as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (LDS), were and still are infamous for their teetotaler ways and as abstainers of vices of all kinds; hence, they didn’t look kindly on the brethren partaking of the plant, viewing it as a violation of Mormon scripture from the “Doctrine and Covenants,” section 89 (D&C 89), …

Are you ready to #SmokeTheVote?

??Happy National Voter Registration Day!??

It’s critically important that we make sure all reform supporters are registered and turnout to vote for pro-cannabis candidates this year for the “Marijuana Midterms.”

With just six weeks until Election Day, NORML is proud to roll out the following educational tools for you to take with you to the ballot booth.

Smoke the Vote: NORML has graded every incumbent and major candidate for federal office throughout the country – making it easy for you to get the facts.

NORML chapters around the country have recorded many of the positions of candidates for state-level offices. This scorecard is meant to be a living document, and with over 10,000 legislators at the state and federal level across the nation, we NEED your help to keep it up to date. If you see that we’re missing a candidate’s position or a great quote from them regarding marijuana policy, send it our way.

NORML Election Central: Learn about the various ballot initiatives around the country and see all of the NORML PAC endorsed candidates.

NORML Voter Registration Tool: NORML has partnered with Rock the Vote making it easy and fast for you and your friends to register to vote!

We need more voices supporting reform in the political process. If our supporters are not registered and voting, lawmakers will not hear the need for legislative action. Make sure your friends, family, and neighbors