Comedian Lewis Black starts talking about the legalization of marijuana
Enough is enough. And I don’t even smoke the stuff, but if we are going to pay for anything we have to find ways to raise money, and here’s one. Marijuana is a huge industry, and people are not going to stop smoking it. Critics are concerned that kids will get a hold of the stuff. Like the kids don’t already get a hold of it! It’s insane.
Crack babies leading ordinary lives. It’s been some time now since the hysteria over crack babies has been dispelled, but it’s good to remind people that such destructive media over-reaction is more damaging than the drug itself. Sure, pregnant women shouldn’t take certain drugs, but that doesn’t mean that you doom a generation (or, for that matter, over-react in crafting oppressive and racist legislation).
“Honestly, I had the perception that crack babies were born messed up, that they went through their life having problems,” said Jeff, who was a B student in high school, played sports and has worked part time since he was 14. He works at Starbucks and attends Howard Community College, aiming for a degree in accounting. “I don’t see other kids doing things that I don’t see myself capable of doing.”
Researchers say the hysteria that surrounded crack-exposed babies teaches lessons on how to deal with the increasing number of children being born with prenatal exposure to methamphetamine. “We think everyone has learned from looking at the cocaine-exposed kids not to get in a uproar before we have data,” said Nicolette Borek, of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, which oversees 15 studies of children exposed to cocaine before birth.
Many of those babies were born prematurely, with low birth weights and unusually small heads, but overall, they are “doing a lot better than we thought,” she said. “One of the messages of this is really how resilient children are and the brain is. Your exposure does not doom you.”
As scientists and researchers from Israel, Brazil, Canada and the US participate in the Sixth National Clinical Conference on Cannabis Therapeutics, a coalition of medical marijuana advocates is calling on the Obama administration for prompt action on an eight-year-old petition to reschedule marijuana for medical use. The petition, filed in 2002, argues that marijuana should be classified as a drug with “accepted medical use” based on growing scientific evidence and acceptance in state law. Since the petition was filed, even more scientific studies and state laws have recognized the medical efficacy of marijuana.
Unless someone can enlighten me further on the press release, this appears to be merely a reminder that the petition is out there, waiting for the government to act.
It’s also a reminder that with marijuana, the DEA has stacked the deck against the statutory provisions that allow procedures for petitioning for rescheduling. The built-in tactics and procedures are intended to allow for surreal levels of delay and obstruction.
The first petition was filed in 1972. It was finally killed by the DEA in 1994, 22 years later. A 1995 petition was killed in 2002. The one from drugscience, mentioned above, is the third petition.
I guess we’ve been over-reacting to all the thousands of deaths in Mexico. Turns out they mostly had it coming.
President Felipe Calderon insisted Friday that few innocent civilians have fallen victim to Mexico’s bloody drug war, saying nearly all those killed are people tied to cartels wrestling for power.
Speaking during a tourism conference, Calderon said criminals constitute more than 90 percent of drug war’s death toll, which stands at nearly 23,000 in just over three years.
Fascinating. I wonder how he knows? Perhaps all criminals in Mexico carry ID cards. But then, there’s all those deaths that involved dismemberment of naked corpses… maybe they have “I am a criminal” tattoos?
Thomas McLellan, the former Penn professor whose appointment last year as the top federal official on addiction treatment was widely seen as signaling a dramatic shift in drug policy, is planning to resign.
â€œThereâ€™s no deep dark secret here – Iâ€™m just ill-suited to government work,â€ McLellan said in an interview with the newsletter Alcoholism & Drug Abuse Weekly.
McLellan was supposed to be the big treatment guy for the ONDCP, the one to show that they really meant their supposed switch to treatment over enforcement. This doesn’t look good for the drug czar’s office, particularly with the grilling in Kucinich’s committee, and the long delay of the drug strategy report.
The release of the National Drug Control Strategy, a detailed blueprint for how the federal government deals with issues of illegal drugs and underage drinking that is written by McLellan and Kerlikowske, has been expected for more than two months but repeatedly delayed. Both men have talked in bits and pieces about its emphasis on treatment, and it was not known whether the delay had anything to do with McLellanâ€™s decision.
DrugSense Weekly – a weekly review of the most interesting or relevant articles in the press and on the web related to drug policy reform.
Drug War Chronicle – weekly update of drug war news and analysis from Stop the Drug War.org.
RIP Jack Herer (in case you missed the good discussions in the comments in our open thread, or the link to the coverage by NORML).
Sorry for being off-line for the past few days. A student group that I advise was having a four-square marathon to raise money for student scholarships. It went for 65 straight hours, and now I’m trying to catch up on sleep.
This is an open thread.
Update: To those who write with assumptions about me based on my lack of including some major piece of news on my blog…. This is not a news aggregator — go to MAPinc if you want to read about everything (and help them out — they could always use some more newshawks). I write about and share things of my choice — that may be some insignificant tidbit that I find of interest at the moment, and not include some major piece of news that everyone else is talking about. I value all the tips and suggestions I receive immensely. Some I use, and some I don’t. There isn’t necessarily a dark design involved in that process. It’s a blog, and it’s the nature of blogging. </vent>