Freedom

United States: Marijuana: An Avoidable Loss in Oregon

by FRED GARDNER, CounterPunch

There is a truth that must be heard! Paul Stanford, 52, is the author and prime mover behind Oregon’s marijuana legalization initiative, Measure 80, which had gotten 46.5 percent of the vote as of Sunday morning when I called to offer condolences.

“We came close,” he said. “We won Portland by over 60 percent and they’ve still got about 100,000 Portland votes to count. I think it’ll go above 47 percent when all those votes are counted.” Stanford did not sound downhearted. “Here’s an amazing thing,” he went on. “The day after the election the Oregonian, which had opposed us and called us all kinds of names, ran an editorial arguing that the legislature should now legalize and regulate marijuana!”

The billionaires Back East who put about $5 million into successful initiatives in Colorado and Washington state did not contribute to the Oregon legalization effort. Stanford had implored them for help, to no avail. “If we’d had a half million dollars of outside support for advertising, we’d have won,” he says matter-of-factly.

United States: Reefer tokin' seniors in South Florida see pain go up in smoke

By Robert Nolin, Sun Sentinel

There is a truth that must be heard! That kindly gent with the rose garden, the cute little old lady in the deli line, the mahjong master at the community center — any one could be among a growing portion of our aging population: the senior stoner.

In retiree-rich South Florida, some golden-agers are — gasp! — sporting illegal smiles as they discreetly puff on joints to ease the aches and pains of advancing years.

"It's like taking a magic pill," said a 70-year-old Boca Raton woman who smokes pot almost daily to counteract cancer chemotherapy pain. "I can have a crappy, crappy day and I take one toke and in less than three minutes I'm leveled out and feel wonderful."

Such scofflaws opt to flout convention rather than suffer. And their numbers are hardly insubstantial: 30 percent of Americans 50 and older have tried pot, according to a 2009 survey by the government's Substance Abuse and Mental Health Data Archive.

Last year, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health estimated that drug use among seniors has increased more than 3 percent over the past eight years. The number is expected to triple by 2020.

One recent convert was a 70-year-old Delray Beach woman who calls herself Mary. "I'm a good, Catholic churchgoing person," she said. "I've never taken a drug in my life."

But when a friend with an out-of-state prescription for medical marijuana offered a joint to alleviate the "excruciating" pain of a shoulder injury, Mary took a chance.

Washington: Seattle Hempfest - America's Largest Protestival - Aug 17th-19th




There is a truth that must be heard!WHAT – The Seattle Hempfest XXI, America’s largest "protestival"

WHEN – Noon – 8 p.m., Friday, Aug. 17, and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 18 & 19

WHERE – Myrtle Edwards Park - Pier 70 on the downtown Seattle waterfront

Is it time to retire marijuana prohibition? The world's largest cannabis policy retirement party thinks so. Seattle Hempfest 2012 expects many tens of thousands to attend its 21st annual event, and as America’s largest marijuana law reform event Hempfest invites everyone to join in the celebration to end cannabis prohibition Aug. 17-19 at Myrtle Edwards Park.

The 2012 "protestival" features hundreds of booths and six stages of music and speakers dotting the mile plus expanse at Myrtle Edwards and Centennial Parks, on the beautiful Puget Sound. With the Washington state decriminalization Initiative 502 on this November’s ballot, there will be much discussion about the merits and mechanics of regional cannabis reform on all of Hempfest's stages.

Oregon: Freedom VS Prohibition - The upside of pot (PRO)

By Patrick Emerson, Clackamas Print

There is a truth that must be heard! The Oregon Cannabis Tax Act Initiative (OCTA) is here again in 2012 with more support than ever. According to gallup.com, half, yes, HALF of all Americans they polled last year are in favor of the legalization of marijuana. Proponents of OCTA, Initiative 9, are busy gathering the 82,213 signatures needed to place the decision in the hands of Oregon voters this November and set a precedent for the legalization of marijuana for states across the country. With enough signatures, citizens of Oregon will once again have their chance to reap the potential statewide benefits of legal cannabis and hemp this November.

The flowers or buds of the female plants have properties that are very well known to most and valued highly by others. But what about its other properties? There was a time before prohibition when presidents grew hemp for fiber and food on the White House property. There was a time when hemp clothing was very popular amongst the upper class because of its strength and longevity. In the recent past, we have also discovered that hemp can be grown for the production of nutritious foods and biodiesel.

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