The most recent polls taken in California this month in regards to cannabis legalization show the numbers are in the cannabis communities favor. Not that surprising if you ask me. The most surprising is the recent uptick in support. It jumped from 51% in support of legalization in 2014, to 55% in favor of legalization in 2015. That is a big jump for a single year. In another poll they also discovered if cannabis were legal, 53% of California voters would not mind if a cannabis retailer opened in their neighborhood, while 44% said they would be bothered.
( Excerpt ) – ( Fifty-three percent of Californians told pollsters this month that marijuana should be legal, a record level of support since the Public Policy Institute of California began asking the question in 2010. According to a poll released this week, 45 percent of adults said the drug should remain illegal. Among likely voters, 55 percent favored legalization and 43 percent do not. If cannabis were legal, 53 percent of adults told PPIC that they would not mind if a cannabis retailer opened up in their neighborhood, and 44 percent said they would be bothered. Considering the question across political lines, most Democrats (63 percent) and Independents (57 percent) favored legalization, while a majority of Republicans (54 percent) did not. When PPIC asked the question in fall 2014, 51 percent of adults were in favor. When the organization asked in 2013, 52 percent of adults were in favor.Unsurprisingly, young people are more likely than older adults to favor legalization. Sixty-one percent of 18-to-34-year-olds said yes, 47 percent of those 35 to 54 supported, and 52 percent for those ages 55 and older. )
( Original Link and Author ) Thank You –Allen Young Staff Writer – Sacramento Business Journal http://www.bizjournals.com/sacramento/news/2015/03/27/poll-support-for-legalizing-marijuana-in.html
This is great news, if we allow it to be. This means we are finally winning the hearts and minds of the average people of California. Though it is very important that the California cannabis community seize upon this large uptick in momentum and steer it to all the proper channels, initiatives and groups fighting for real, 100%, Re-Legalization of cannabis in 2016. Why is it so important? We simply cannot allow this momentum to be wrangled in, or divided by industry leaders, phony patient activist groups, and middle men suppliers protecting their own self interests and black market profits over the interests of 99% of our cannabis community. In which case if this is your first cannabis legalization rodeo, it happens every cycle.
Don’t be hoodwinked. The wealthiest and most successful within the California medical cannabis industry like to test the waters with what they call, reform discussions and legalization roundtables. These are not about real legalization efforts. These gatherings are more about checking up on the enemies progression, gathering intel, and creating division amongst already united fronts. When the wealthiest and largest tycoons in the medical cannabis industry really want to know just what their up against in regards to future legalization efforts. Who do they turn to? Take a wild guess. They turn to groups like, MPP, Cal-Norml, ASA, and DPA to poll and question the information out of their members for them. They also love to host events and invite everyday patients and consumers to these events. They really want your insight and concerns for writing future legalization initiatives don’t ya know. Why? I will tell you why. So they can author an initiative that gives US the very LEAST of what WE all want, and gives THEM the majority of what THEY all want. They really do an excellent job at painting a picture of pure concern and motivation towards legalization, while acting against our own interests. I’ve seen it first hand.
But wait, don’t go all negative Nancy on me just yet man! There is a way out of this perpetual spiral of doom. And it starts with YOU, ME, and the entire cannabis community as a whole coming together, and the other 55% of Californians who agree that Cannabis Hemp should be 100% Re-Legalized. It’s up to us to liberate ourselves from mental slavery and reclaim the natural. Jack herer’s California Cannabis Hemp initiative of 2016 is the primary key to achieving real legalization that encompasses everyone. It addresses almost every major concern that has constantly plagued our community and culture since its inception. It also does a great job insuring that the everyday needs of the consumers are equally as important as the industries needs. Before I go into the details of why I support the CCHI 2016 initiative, and why I believe you should also. Lets delve into a little background and history of the initiative itself. Because I feel it is very crucial to know and understand the past, in order to truly understand the vision of the future. I still come across people to this very day who say, Jack Herer?, oh yeah, he was one of the best growers ever, I love that strain. I Also feel it is very important for the new generations to know the legacy of jack Herer.
Captain Ed and jack Herer met each other in 1974. They were both working together on the California Marijuana initiative. They both worked tirelessly toward educating the masses about the benefits of cannabis hemp. Ed actually made Jack swear a pact that he would fight for legalization until he was either dead, it was legal, or he turned the ripe old age of 84. They both agreed to the terms, shook on it, and smoked a joint to seal the deal. They had made this pact because they both knew they had accumulated vast amounts of knowledge through their own personal research and studies of Cannabis Hemp that this single plant could in fact, save and change not just California, but the World. They knew its amazing benefits and potential. They also knew that most of this knowledge was not commonly known to the average citizen. Both Jack and Ed worked tirelessly around the clock 24 hours a day, seven days week to educate, and liberate Cannabis 100% for everyone.
The (CHI) was originally started by Captain Ed Adair and Jack Herer and was a 100% grass-roots, all volunteer initiative. They believed in the power of the people to come together and overcome there oppressive government and there draconian laws.
Unfortunately “Captain” Ed Adair lost his battle with Leukemia and died in 1991. Here is a dedication Jack wrote on his website in 1998 to his dear friend and mentor, Ed Adiar.
( Original Link ) – http://www.digitalhemp.com/eecdrom/TEXT/page5.htm
To Edwin “Captain Ed” M. Adair III
Born October 29, 1940;
Died August 16, 1991 of Leukemia
Father of Scarlet, Robyn, and Edwin Marsh IV
He was my teacher, partner, and friend; the most honorable man, and the bravest freedom fighter I’ve ever known.
He taught many of us how to save the Earth from ourselves and to laugh at and yet love its enemies.
In 1974-75, possession of under an ounce of hemp/pot was decriminalized in the state of California. Captain Ed (pictured above at right, with the author at the 1990 Minnesota Rainbow Gathering) was 33 years old and I was 34. We took a pledge. At that time, virtually every one in the California pot movement thought we’d already won. They’d begun to drift away from the movement and had gone back to their lives, thinking the battle was over and we’d won, and that the politicians would clean up the loose ends…
Captain Ed didn’t trust politicians to get the job done. And he was right.
Ed’s pledge that I took in 1974 and again in April 1980, 1986, and 1988, and finally in the hospital four days before he died in August 1991, was that we’d swear to work every day to legalize marijuana and get all pot prisoners out of jail, until we were dead, marijuana was legal, or we could quit when we turned 84. We wouldn’t have to quit, but we could.
When we first made that pledge we were 50 years away from becoming octogenarians (80-year-olds, that is). Incredibly, we thought that in the light of all the amazing information we had uncovered about hemp, that the battle for complete legalization of cannabis would easily be over in six months—two years at the most…
Captain Ed gave us and me hemp as one of mankind’s most honorable and most important saviors. I vow to continue the fight, and I ask my fellow Californians, all Americans, and the rest of the world to join us.
July 15, 1998
The legacy of Edwin “Captain Ed” M. Adair III shouldn’t be overlooked either. He played a very big role in educating, inspiring, and motivating Jack Herer, And did a lot himself for our cannabis community and culture. While losing his mentor and best friend surely had to be heartbreaking and traumatic. He pressed on and never gave up trying to qualify his and other legalization initiatives on the California ballot. He still went from state to state educating anyone who would listen. Sadly In July 2000, Jack Herer suffered a minor heart attack and a major stroke, resulting in difficulties speaking and moving the right side of his body. Jack Herer mostly recovered, and claimed in May 2004 that treatment with the Amanita muscaria, a psychoactive mushroom, was the “secret”. While that slowed him down for a awhile, he still kept at it. Sadly in September 12, 2009 Herer suffered another heart attack while backstage at the Hempstalk Festival in Portland, Oregon. He was discharged to another facility on October 13, 2009. Paul Stanford of The Hemp and Cannabis Foundation said “He is waking up and gazing appropriately when someone is talking… but he is not really communicating in any way.”He died aged 70 on April 15, 2010 in Eugene, Oregon, from complications related to the September 2009 heart attack. Jack Herer was buried at the Eden Memorial Park Cemetery in Mission Hills, California.
First let me say, I never had the honor or pleasure of meeting Jack Herer. We where not close friends or even acquaintances sadly. I only knew the legacy of Jack Herer. Simply because he was very inspiring, articulate, and very well-educated on the topics. I looked up to him. I had one of his 420 Beverly Hills wallets and owned a signed copy of his book. That is the extent of our personal relationship, none! But I can remember exactly where I was, where I was sitting, and what I was doing when his death was announced. I was listening to radical Russ Belville on the Norml Live radio show just before I had to go to work. April 15, 2010, Just as the show was wrapping up, Russ broke into the end credits and music at the end of his show to announce with a very saddened tone and heart, that Jack Herer had passed away due to complications related to the September 2009 heart attack. I honestly cried right there at my computer desk. I did not know him personally, though I was deeply saddened by his passing and the loss of such a pivotal man for the cannabis movement. He died five days short of 420 no less. The biggest holiday and celebration for our cannabis community and culture. The timing, and everything seemed so wrong. The truth of the matter is, if you only took one lesson away from the life and legacy of jack Herer it would have to be his persistence and dedication to the cause, and people.
They both never gave up on us, or the Cannabis Hemp plant, never! And sadly neither one ever saw real legalization in California in their lifetimes even though they dedicated there lives to it. Jack and Ed are why I write these articles, They are why I have made the exact same pact with myself. The legacy that is, and was Jack Herer and Edwin “Captain” Adair must not have been in vain, or simply forgotten. These men pledged themselves to lives of servitude for the greater good of all men and women. This is exactly why there visions and dreams of liberating Cannabis Hemp 100% for all Californians and the World must be brought into the modern age. The good news is, it has, and its up to YOU and ME to make sure it really happens this time around in 2016.
Now, lets take a look at what I think are some of the most important and crucial aspects of the CCHI 2016 initiative, and why I think you should not only support it 100 percent, you should volunteer, donate and do everything you possibly can to see that it succeeds for the future benefit of all Californians.
( 1. ) It allows for personal / recreational use, possession and cultivation. ) In which case, let’s be honest, almost all initiatives will do the exact same thing. But only to a certain extent. just like we saw with Prop-19. They tried to limit personal cultivation to a 5×5 space for personal use. And Prop-19 only protected 1 ounce of personal cannabis. Just like Jack use to say, ” Without cultivation, it’s not legalization.” I would say, “Without adiquite cultivation, that directly meets the needs of personal, and medical consumption, it’s not legalization either.” For the purpose of distinguishing personal from commercial production, 99 flowering female plants and 12 pounds of dried, cured cannabis hemp flowers, but not leaf, produced per adult, 21 years of age and older, per year shall be considered as being for personal use. No tax, No license, no permit is required for Non-commercial cultivation, transportation, distribution, or personal consumption.
For some of you this may seem like way to much. Actually it’s quite the opposite. It’s what we need. It will force cannabis costs to drop drastically. It will create greater access for medicinal and recreational users throughout the entire state. Anyone that has grown their own plants knows, 99 plants does not always equate to the presumed 1-3 pounds per plant ratio that most like to boast about. Nor does it mean all 99 plants will even survive the season. There are many factors that can affect a crop and plants that are simply overlooked by the laymen or average consumer. Not to mention a single cultivator working 99 plants is a lot of work for one person. Those who have been at this long enough know that the best buds come from small well maintained gardens. Not large over scaled and under appreciated ones. But that doesn’t mean that 99 plants is unreasonable for each individual person either. Concentrates, butters, oils, salves, and topical’s all require a lot of material to process as well. And I would argue that being able to provide yourself with your own edibles, butters, salves, topical’s and concentrates also provides a substantial drop in costs to the everyday consumer and patient. Currently under Prop-215 and SB-420 Doctors are already allowed to give exemptions that can exceed the state requirements already. They can even go above 99 plants. But most just go all the way up to….you guessed it, 99 plants. Now trust me when I say, “There will not be another initiative that meets the demands of the cannabis consumers and patients needs in regards to cultivation like the California cannabis Hemp Initiative does. Period! If you think the industry leaders and dispensary owners are going to write an initiative that effectively puts them out of business. you’re going to be waiting a really long time.
(2.) It will Repeal, delete, and expunge any and all existing statutory laws that conflict with the provisions of this initiative. 1. Enactment of this initiative shall include: case review for the purpose of amnesty, immediate release from prison, jail, parole, and probation, and clearing, expunging, and deletion of all cannabis hemp marijuana criminal records for all persons currently charged with, or convicted of any non-violent cannabis hemp marijuana offenses included in this initiative which are hereby no longer illegal in the State of California. People who fall within this category that triggered an original sentence are included within this provision. Within 60 days of the passage of this Act, the Attorney General shall develop and distribute a one-page application, providing for the destruction of all cannabis hemp marijuana criminal records in California for any such offense covered by this Act. Such forms shall be distributed to district and city attorneys and made available at all police departments in the State to persons hereby affected )
I have heard a lot of nonsense about this one. stuff like, That is so absurd the state would never be able to practically do that in actual reality. The hell they can’t! In fact, not only do they need to, they have to, by law. In August, a three-judge federal court ruled that California must reduce its prison population by approximately 40,000 in two years. California’s prison population is consistently one of the largest in the country. The California Cannabis Hemp Initiative will certainly help in relieving the current prison over population problem in California. They are also Non-Violent drug offenders who deserve their freedom. This to me is a no brainer.
( 3. ) It will help define and determine an acceptable and uniform standard of impairment based on scientifically acceptable performance testing, to restrict persons impaired by cannabis hemp euphoric products from operating a motor vehicle or heavy machinery, or otherwise engaging in conduct that may affect public safety. This is a very important issue considering the current test of impairment only tests for non active cannabis metabolites that may have remained dormant in your bodies fat cells for weeks, and in no way shape or form does it give an accurate level of impairment. Meaning you may have smoked three weeks prior and still test positive for non active cannabis metabolites resulting in a DUI. Forcing the state to address this issue through the initiative process is probably the only way these inadequate forms of testing will ever be changed.
( 4.) The term “commercial production” means the production of cannabis hemp products for sale or profit under the conditions of these provisions. Industrial cannabis hemp farmers, manufacturers, processors, distributors, medicinal collectives, and retailers shall not be subject to any special zoning requirement, licensing fee, or tax that is excessive, discriminatory, or prohibitive. This is a very important issue for me living Fresno, who has tried and used every trick under the sun to prohibit any all cultivation of medicinal cannabis indoors and out. This will prohibit cities and counties from imposing discriminatory, excessive, or prohibitive zoning requirements and fees on cannabis outlets. It also caps the excise tax for commercial sales at 10% of the retail price. It also caps the license fees for commercial production, distribution, and sales at $1000. you want to be a mom-n-pop cannabis shop? Or maybe you want to take your strain and cultivation skills to the commercial market, and up your production? $1000 dollars please, and you’re in the commercial cannabis industry.
( 5. ) It will effectively remove Cannabis from the California Uniform Controlled Substances Act, which currently allows the Federal Government to Regulate Cannabis as a Schedule I drug. It will also prohibit California Law enforcement from assisting Federal Drug agents attempting to enforce federal laws that are no longer illegal by reason of this legislation. Also any person who threatens the enjoyment of these provisions is guilty of a misdemeanor. The maximum penalties and fines of a misdemeanor may be imposed.
( 6. ) Allows farmers to grow industrial hemp and hemp seed, and allows industries and entrepreneurs to use the crop for the many uses and applications that hemp provides, both historically and modern. Restricts the use in California of genetically modified Cannabis seeds. This is probably one of the most important issues out of all them all. If we want to feed the fourth hungriest city in the nation, Fresno, it is as simple as planting the seed. We have an entire Central Valley of generation after generation of farmers. The Hemp plant requires far less water then corn and most vegetable crops, replenishes the Soil, Requires very little , to no pesticides, and would also help reduce the nations 2nd most polluted city in America, Second only to Bakersfield Ca. Hemp in the Central Valley of California makes perfect sense in more ways then one. It puts our farmers back to work, it also feeds the hungry with the most nutritional seed for human consumption on this planet. All while cleaning the heavily polluted soil and very air we breath.
Lets be honest with ourselves here folks. If you are looking for, or waiting around, and expecting the Industry leaders to create a more extensive, or better initiative then the California Cannabis Hemp Initiative of 2016. It is never going to happen. If you believe that Norml, ASA, DPP, and the MPP are hosting these round tables and conferences because they are going to craft an initiative that doesn’t favor the Industry leaders over the interests of the average consumer. Wrong again. I have even heard a few people suggest that ASA and Cal-Norml are on board with the California Cannabis Hemp Initiative 2016. Wrong again. This is Lip service at best to shoe you away from the real conversation. Unless Dale Gieringer, and Don Duncan are donating funds and coordinating future signature gatherings for the CCHI 2016 campaign to officially register it for the 2016 ballot. it should only be considered lip service at best.
The California Cannabis Hemp Initiative was literally written by OUR people, for ALL people in the 70’s and has been carefully cared for, adjusted and modified for the modern age by Jack himself up until his death in 2010, and has only been modified after his death by a limited amount of trusted associates who worked very closely with jack himself. I have witnessed the evolution and growth of the California cannabis Hemp Initiative campaign and grass-roots efforts in both the 2012 and 2014 attempts to register it on the ballot. I can honestly say with confidence, I really feel positive that we are going to put the CCHI on the 2016 presidential ballot. Another interesting side note is that the really bad voter turnout in the last California gubernatorial election actually means we require less signatures to qualify.
The real bottom line here is that unless we all take it upon ourselves to walk the walk, and not just, talk the talk, and actually get involved in OUR own future. We will constantly be disappointed with the alternatives they present us with. Sadly, both Jack Herer and Captain Ed died before they were able to witness real legalization in California. So here is my proposition to you and every other seriously motivated person in the Cannabis community. This upcoming 4/20, 2015, in loving memory of Jack Herer and Captain Ed. Make a pact with a friend, or yourself to dedicate yourself to getting involved in the upcoming fight to liberate and Re-Legalize Cannabis Hemp in California in 2016. Don’t forget to seal it seal it with a Joint! And remember, there is not going to be any large financial backing for the California Cannabis Hemp Initiative 2016. Nor is it required like most would have you believe either. What is needed and required is large amounts of dedication, motivation, and coordination from the Cannabis Community.
By Dustin F. Lowery
Please go to the website – http://www.cchi2016.org – Just Click the donate button and give whatever you can spare to the CCHI 2016 today.
If you are in the Fresno area or Central valley and want to get involved in the upcoming signature gathering process, or are just have questions please contact me @dustruction, or through the this E-Mail at- cchi2016Fresno@gmail.com
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Are you looking forward to the potential of Cannabis legalization in California come 2016? So am I! Have been for quite some time now. Since 2009 I have actually dedicated my life to sharing and educating people about the truths and potential of Cannabis Hemp. Its one of the main reasons I am writing this article today. The future of Cannabis legalization in California may seem almost destined to pass with flying colors in 2016. I assure you, it is not going to be as simple as it is perceived. What some may consider legalization, doesn’t necessarily equate to the legalization you may be expecting. Now with that being said, there are only a few ways to ensure that real legalization happens in 2016. And almost all of them start and end with you. Yeah you, the reader. Not just you, me and everyone else also.
First things first. If you’re sitting back waiting for the (DPA) Drug Policiy Alliance, (Norml) National Organization for Reform of Marijuana Laws, (ASA) Americans For Safe Access, and other so-called activists groups to deliver legalization for you. You probably would not get to excited about the final result. Do you believe they will form an initiative that favors the average patient, or consumer over the current medical marijuana industry leaders and stake holders? If you do, you have been sadly mislead. Why? Because these very organizations are ran and supported by, you guessed it, the very Industry leaders and business owners who enjoy their absorbent profits from the current unregulated model. How could I possibly know this? I have seen it first hand. I have traveled up and down this state to several cannabis events sponsored by these groups. I have seen the subversion they use to promote the Industry over the plant itself. I specifically recall the big ASA lobbying event at the state capitol a few years back. Where they specifically advertised the weekend as a patient lobbying day. So I wanted to check this lobbying day out for myself. I figured at least it would be an educational experience. Which it was, for several reasons.
When we arrived at this local union hall in the middle of nowhere in Sacramento one of the first things I noticed was there was a lot of dress shirts and Dockers. Everywhere! They all had their ASA lobbying day badges around their Necks looking professional. They had very nice and lavish charter buses they had rented to bus the “Patients” from other districts to Sacramento. Where were these patients? After clambering around during their meeting recording what I could with my camera I had seen virtually no patients. Every word out of their mouths was about lobbying there representatives the following day at the capitol building . All about regulating the medical marijuana industry. The thing I found most interesting was after the meeting I wanted to speak with some of these patients and get there take on the meeting. Almost every single person I spoke with was a patient in the legal sense, but not your everyday average patient. They were all Industry insiders, and Dispensary owners there to lobby their representatives for more restrictive regulations in regards to the medical cannabis industry. I think one of the most telling signs was how excited Don Duncan got once Stephan Deangelo and his Brother showed up at the capitol building. My point is, they tell you one thing to your face, and do another behind closed doors. They verbally promote legalization, regulation and reform. But not the kind that benefits the everyday consumer and patient. If you are relying on them to author something that will meet your needs as a Consumer or a Patient. Think again!
One of my favorite Hemp activists Chris Conrad wrote a really good piece back during the TaxCannabis prop-19 debate. ( http://weedactivist.com/2010/07/25/another-word-on-jack-and-prop-19-from-chris-conrad/ ) (Excerpt) – Initially Jack deeply hated Prop 215. He literally stumped up and down the state cursing out hemp activists who backed it. He screamed at us, called us traitors for working on medical use, and claimed that Dennis Peron was secretly against legalization. When 215 was filed, Jack filed the California Hemp Initiative (CHI) on the 1996 ballot to block it. and changed the name to “California Hemp _and Health_ Initiative” so people signing it would think they had signed Prop 215, to mess with the signature count. When I called him on it, he said he was trying to keep Prop 215 off the ballot because, among other things, “people will stop working for legalization and we’ll be stuck with medical forever. No hemp, no legalization; that will be the end.” Later he circulated the CCU petitions for pay, then before the election came to support it completely. Now some people actually credit Jack for ‘passing Prop 215. Jack vociferously opposed Senate Bill 420, but he loved the dispensaries it allowed to open. ( click the Above link to read the entire piece).
Jacks words – “people will stop working for legalization and we’ll be stuck with medical forever. No hemp, no legalization; that will be the end.” Jack Knew it then, and they also knew it then. Guess what ? They still know it now! This is exactly what we have been dealing with for the last 19 years. The industry leaders and club owners don’t want there quasi legal black market profits going anywhere. So enter the DPA, Norml and ASA with their attempts at dividing the legalization movement as a whole. They certainly don’t want the everyday average consumer to be able to cultivate their own Cannabis at home, over buying their middle man marked up products in their stores. Do you think (Norml), (ASA) and the (DPA) want everyone in California cultivating a possible 99 plants legally? Do you think they want to lose that revenue stream? Not just the dispensary owners and industry leaders but the activist groups themselves? No they don’t! and they are very active right now at subverting attention away from the CCHI 2016 initiative for other initiatives that have not even been written yet. Yet they all love to invoke the legacy of jack Herer. Like Stephan Deangelo of Harborside in Oakland Ca. One of the Worlds largest dispensaries in the world by the way. He constantly speaks of how good friends him and Jack were, and how they shared the same vision in regards to legalization and cannabis, Well I will have to beg to differ here. I personally asked Stephan Deangelo during the CCHI 2012 signature campaign, at Harborside’s yearly shindig called The Deep Green Festival if he supported the Jack here Initiative. He simply replied, I do not support any initiative until they have already registered for the ballot. So the man who makes the most money, and the most profits in California, from the Patients of the medical cannabis industry no less, won’t support or finance any legalization effort until it has already officially made the ballot. Share the same vision my ass!
The point is, if you rely on industry leaders, and activists groups to do the work for you, you’d better get ready for a heaping pile of disappointment. Trust me when I say they will let you down every time. In the words of Jack Herer – “You guys have to be warriors for your own freedom. You can’t depend on me or anyone else to do it for you. This freedom comes from our willingness to put our acts on the line and teach people all the comprehensive information we have learned about cannabis hemp.” We don’t need big money, we need big motivation and big determination from an educated base of citizenry. The CCHI 2016 is organizing up and down, and throughout the entire state as I write this article. We are organizing a base of volunteers and supporters to get the signatures necessary to qualify for the November 2016 ballot. Please click the link at the top right of the site for more information on how you can get involved with the fight to liberate cannabis 100% for everyone.
Let me start by saying that I have been to my fair Share of County, and City supervisor meetings. Even a few planning commission hearings as well here in Fresno. The most prominent notion in regards to Medicinal Cannabis that is thrown around is the notion that every single cultivator of Cannabis is a Criminal, or is somehow involved in Criminal activity associated with Cannabis. By either abusing the medicinal cannabis program set in place and not following the guidelines, which they do not seem to want to draft any sensible regulations on behalf of the patients. Nor do they seem to care, quite frankly. Then there is always Margret Mimms and our local supervisors favorite and most popular line of defense, Any and every single plant is illegal at the federal level, therefore we have a zero tolerance policy on the basis of all cannabis cultivation is a federal crime. If I had a $100 bucks every time I heard them say “it’s all illegal on the federal level”. I would be wealthy man.
Well in no way shape or form should Margret Mimms, or any other California law enforcement officer be enforcing or even suggesting Federal law within the state of California. Let alone a county supervisor. It is the duty of the Sheriff, as well as the district attorney to enforce state laws. The federal Government cannot compel state law enforcement. The Supreme Court has even stated that Congress cannot require state officers to enforce federal law. The court said that ” the constitution contemplates that a states government will represent and remain accountable to its own citizens.” So when are they going to be held accountable for suggesting we enforce federal law within our states borders, Over the laws passed by the citizens of California?
Well I hate to be the bearer of Bad news, (Not Really) But, These are exactly that, nonsensical notions with no factual statistics to support them. Do not get me wrong though, there are plenty of illegal grows on state and federal property that need eradicating and proper policing. There are also people within the system that do abuse it. You will find that in just about every system though. And yes those are criminals in which I believe deserve the full brunt of law enforcement. What I do not understand is why local law enforcement and county supervisors seem to conveniently confuse, or purposely bunch criminals and qualified patients together. Coincidence? Two birds, one stone. It’s pretty convenient on behalf of the supervisors. They just allow Law enforcement to do what they do best. Policing. And it allows our county and city supervisors to never have to tackle the tough job of working on sensible regulations that are desperately needed for the Fresno citizens that are LEGAL California Prop-215 and SB-420 medicinal marijuana patients. It’s a win, win, for everybody but the patients of course.
The worst part of it is. That the very criminals you are trying to prevent are the very same people set to make larger profits from the criminal black market, effectively increasing crime. Because you successfully eradicated the patient’s ability to either purchase from a licensed facility, known as a collective or a dispensary. And through this outdoor cultivation ban you are once again going to completely diminish the LEGAL California Prop-215 and SB-420 medicinal marijuana patients ability to produce quality outdoor medicine for themselves on their own property. Prop-215 Patients ability to cultivate their own plants outdoors is crucial to not only greater access, cheaper medicine, better quality, but increased safety as well.
Forcing patients to only cultivate indoors is far too expensive for the average patients who are usually on fixed incomes. Most are on disability and cannot cultivate for themselves. Hence the need for Collective grow sites that require larger numbers of plants for those who are disabled and cannot produce their own medicine by their own means or on their own property. We are not just talking about putting a few light bulbs above a few plants in the bath tub. To equal what can be produced outdoors, patients would have to spend upwards of 5000 to 10,000 dollars to produce a room that is up to code and efficient enough to produce what can easily be done by Mother Nature. Not to mention the high amounts of energy consumption that must also be paid annually for each harvest. Along with things like, soil, nutrients, pots, and so many other hidden costs that simply make it ineffective to ban outdoor cultivation. If we want to stay true to the requirements of the compassionate use act, Banning outdoor cultivation is not an effective method of creating greater access for qualified patients. However it is an effective method of avoiding the tough questions and hard work of coming up with sensible regulations for patients, and law enforcement to abide by. Thus making it easier to identify the criminals.
So what? We are all just simply criminals now, and should all be treated as such? That is not very compassionate. I think it is important to note the actual name of Prop-215, the Compassionate use act of 1996. That is why I am writing this today. That is why I am going to read this very post before the Fresno county board of supervisors today. Compassion! I do it for the patients who can’t raise their voices in opposition here today. I do it for the patients that I have personally witnessed amazing life altering changes thanks to cannabis. I am here because I take great pride and solace in seeing the Joy cannabis brings to those who are bright enough to look past the lies and see the truth for themselves. And that is what I ask all of you here today to please consider today, Have some compassion and some consideration for those that you are so blindly throwing out along with the bath water.
This past Wednesday, may 16 2012. The Fresno Planning Commission voted 4-2 on Wednesday to recommend passage of a permanent ban on growing medical marijuana outdoors anywhere in the city of Fresno. I was one of three people to speak against the proposed ban and some of the underlying legal issues. I myself did not submit anything in writing because I felt that speaking from my heart works best for me. I asked the planning commission to please consider who will be effected the most by the passing such a restrictive ordinance. What about the patients who are on disability ? What about the patients who can barely afford to grow a few plants under the sun each season? The patients on fixed incomes who are already having a hard time scraping by ? Such a restrictive ordinance affects the poorest and most neediest of the medicinal cannabis patients here in Fresno, Ca.
I then went on to say that I am not here to advocate for thousand plant grow sites in the city limits. I am here to stand up for the patients right to legally cultivate their own medicine, on their own property. I told them that I was all for sensible regulations on outdoor cultivation within the city limits. But what the city currently had drafted was way to restrictive and would only further restrict patients access to affordable quality medicinal cannabis. Transplanting even a small 2 or 4 plant garden from outdoors to indoors can be very costly. It’s not as simple as ripping the plants from the ground, Throwing them in the bath tub and hanging a light bulb above it. Which by the way where the actual words of a judge here in Fresno recently, and also prior statements of the Law enforcement official giving the presentation before the planning commission just minutes before.
Actually to Give Lt. David Newton of the FPD narcotics division credit, he actually said cheap Led lights, which some growers are switching to, but are rarely used due to little information about production and output. personally there isn’t enough proven evidence to switch anything just yet. I also stated to the planning commission board that I myself do not hate Law enforcement, nor do I blame them for the position they have been in put in. But I am here to advocate Law enforcement does serve and protect the legal medicinal cannabis community like everyone else. I went on to say how I did agree that we needed to work with law enforcement to reign in those who are abusing the medicinal cannabis industry. But we also should not throw away the baby with the bath water. Dont punish the patients for the actions of the criminals.
After Comments from the other 2 whole speakers in opposition Diane Valdovinos ( Local Advocate ) and Micheal Green of Cal pot news. The commission board commended us for our statements. They then proceeded to vote on the ordinance. Many of the members of the planning commission said they understood our concerns but that they didn’t feel it was as restrictive and voted in favor. But one planning commissioner statements specifically hit home for me and made me feel as if we did have a very small victory in the overall battle. Luisa Medina of the planning commission said she was going to vote in favor of the ordinance but after hearing the statements in opposition from the three of us she had changed her mind. I was overjoyed with pride when I heard her say that. The fact that the statements of mine and that of my friends made a difference that day. Though we lost the overall battle, but through education and compassion we changed the heart and mind of just one person who would have otherwise just gone along with protocol and passed the ordinance.
After the planning commission meeting was dismissed we retreated to the front of the city hall building to gather our thoughts. We where then greeted by Luisa medina and Andy Hansen-Smith of the planning commission. they had some great words of encouragement and thanked us for coming out voicing our concerns to the commission. But the real highlight of that evening for me personally was when Lt. David Newton of the FPD confronted me outside of city hall and thanked me for coming. He also told me that I was a very good representative the for medicinal cannabis community and that he actually voted for prop 215 back in 1996. Lt David Newton also said that he looked forward to seeing me again. I jokingly replied, well I hope its at the next city council meeting and not anywhere else. We both laughed, shook hands and parted ways. Now those are the kinds of encounters with law enforcement I would prefer happen.
But for those who believe the opponent has the upper hand and it’s just to large a hill to climb. Dont give Up ! Three dedicated cannabis activists didn’t win the overall battle this past Wednesday, but they are winning the hearts and minds through the power of compassion and education. The key to ending patient discrimination in local counties and city’s here in the central valley is through education and compassion. Through this blog and various other social media I will keep you posted on when the ordinance will be going before the Fresno City council.
By: Dustin F. Lowery