CALL TO ACTION! Help Legalize Cannabis in Pennsylvania - Sign and Share this Petition!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

NJ Weedman Going to Court Today to Fight Evesham Township

Ed Forchion, aka: NJ Weedman, has had a full plate regarding his involvement with the government over marijuana. Today, (6-27-13) he will appear in court to fight a search that was conducted under the pretense that the officer has, "never seen a person wearing a weed shirt that didn't have weed on them". He was pulled over in Evesham Township and he recorded video of the event that can be seen here:




Because of a small patch on his vest, NJ Weedman was searched, where upon the officer found a small amount of personally prescribed marijuana of Ed's. This led to an arrest and today is the day that Ed goes again before a Judge and begins a fight over the legitimacy of marijuana law.

After his arrest, Ed put out a Brief that questioned the legitimacy of criminal statutes when NJ law distinctly recognizes marijuana as a medicine. So far, several cases have been dismissed as a result of Ed's open-access Brief. This means that while these cases are not going to court to settle the question of whether the medical laws prevail, several young, innocent, non-violent smokers are free to continue about their days without worry of jail, court costs, fines and other nasty side effects of getting found guilty.

We'll be keeping up with Ed as things unfold. Since this was a very personal amount (grams), the likelihood of this being a precedent setting case is low. Nonetheless, if Ed gets this case dismissed or otherwise, he is pro full legalization of marijuana and he'll be continuing the good fight far into the future.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

OPINION : Drug War is "Horrendous"

To what degree do we separate opinion and fact?

This is an opinion piece, though "Drug War is 'Horrendous'" sounds like a fact. I've seen stories of innocent people killed in bad raids. I've seen stories of children taken from their parents by the State over a bowl and a few grams of marijuana. This is not acceptable. This is not what justice and law was put here to do.

We've seen a time of police state establishment unlike any other: the Boston Bombing manhunt where iron-clad war vehicles rolled down suburban streets "cold-calling" houses and searching without warrant. Circumstance does not matter: we NEED to stop forfeiting our rights so easily!

Every time you file taxes, you are supporting the drug war. Every time you don't film a cop making an arrest, you are supporting the drug war. We need to wake up and put our collective foot down on the illegal branches of our government as well as the illegal use of surveillance that is so clearly occurring, (thanks Snowden).

NA Poe declared boldly in pre-trial that the fact that he wasn't being released that day was "horrendous" and right he was. Everything about the drug war is horrendous. We've made a horror show of our fringe communities like Kensington and North Philadelphia because we consistently refuse to address the drug problem in a real way.

Cops are content getting paid to be big boy security safety officers. Drug addicts are content getting drugs illegally. City services is content hauling away the corpses of the OD victims. Everything in the system seems so utterly unchangeable, even when talking about the lives of family... friends... loved ones...

Addiction is an illness, but like Mitch Hedberg said,

"Alcoholism is the only disease you can get in trouble for. Compare these two sentences; 'Dammit Mitch, you're an alcoholic.' and 'Dammit Mitch, you have lupus.' One does not sound like the other."

We can and must do better. Sign a petition. Join an event. Do SOMETHING. Just don't be another generation of quiet, closet-hidden hippies in fear of the law like we saw in the 60's. Plug a gun with something better than a flower. Let's get back to basics.

Smoke Down Prohibition Six


In standard tradition, June is scheduled for a Smoke Down Prohibition event. This new event, called a "drug war Horror tour of Philly" will feature stops at buildings and places responsible for upholding the insane policies of for-profit prison racketeering, unjust persecution against non-violent criminals and overall dickishness.

What sets this new event apart from our May 18th event, or the events prior, is that at the last Smoke Down, it seemed we had drawn some unpleasant attention from the park rangers. Adam and Poe were arrested before our eyes, leading to a very somber, (and very sober for Poe) time when people gathered outside of the Federal Detention Center.

Collectively, we knew that we couldn't abandon the cause and that Poe and Adam would want Smoke Down to continue even if they were in jail all through the month of June. Well, they're out, and now it's a full party for this next event.

Where the Panic Hour and Philly NORML are planning on taking us with this march, there has been no mention. This is probably to "shake" the heat or to have the opportunity to split if things get hairy.

Cold grey fences and dozens of officers may be in place again come the 30th. There could be worse than we've seen. Maybe the publicity of the first arrests was enough to ward off resistance against peaceful protest. We will see in short time.

Looking for Philanthropic Assistance in Sponsoring a Petition to the PA Law and Justice Dept. Senate Subcommittee

If you haven't, please sign this petition in support of Daylin Leach's bill, SB528, the "Regulate Marijuana Act" that would make PA the keystone state of legalization on the East Coast, please sign it!

Now that that is done, I'd like to make a sincere effort to push for those interested in cannabis legalization in PA to put up a few bucks and sponsor this petition through Change.org. If we could generate even a few hundred dollars a week, we would see growth from the current standing signature count of 1,580 to upwards of 5,000 - 10,000. It has been said that politicians consider another 100 votes for every action taken by petitions, votes or calls that they receive. This final funding push is all this really needs to be taken to the level of "not important" to "urgent".




Friday, May 24, 2013

Adam Kokesh Released From Jail: 'Played Hardball. Won'

In an unexpected move, the Federal Detention Center in Philadelphia at 700 Arch St. where protests have been waging since the 18th over Adam Kokesh and N.A. Poe, has released Adam Kokesh.



Not only did the detention center release Adam, his Federal charge has been dropped in place for two citations, neither of which Adam signed, as shown above.

In the words of Ice Cube, "It was a good day". Adam is now free, joining Poe in the glory of sunshine and continued activism. Is this the last of the government intervention we'll see in the face of legalizing cannabis? Hopefully it will at least be the last time we see such a blatant abuse of authoritative power where Miranda rights were skipped and police saw no issue with gripping up a citizen who has not committed any crime.

"Released 130524 with felony charges reduced to citations which I refused to sign. Played hardball. Won. Talk to you Monday." ~ James Babb

NJ Weedman Frustrated over 'Clipped Wings'

Ed Forchion on a charity flight to LA for his cancer treatment

NJ Weedman, aka: Ed Forchion, has been a well-known metro area face for the controversy surrounding his beliefs on marijuana. Lately, however, Ed has been using experimental bone cancer treatments available only in LA to combat a rare form of bone cancer called "giant cell tumors". Despite having had tumors removed and treating with traditional means, some of Ed's tumors are growing.

X-Rays of Ed's Bone tumors
"This one got taken out but this one and this one are growing," Ed explained in an interview while looking over his x-rays. Despite what everyone thinks, the experimental treatment that he receives in LA is not actually a cannabis treatment, (though Ed has explained that he's trying to implement as much cannabis oil as possible, just in case) it is a new type of bone hardener that doctors believe may combat the cancer.

Mmm, Mmm, First Class deliciousness.
No wonder "No Pictures", look
what the common man is
missing!!!
The high life at 30,000 feet in transit to LA


Recently, Ed thought he had been granted a reprieve from the forces that work to screw him over. He had secured a charity flight service that committed that they would fly him to and from LA for his treatments. Of course, he was very appreciative.

Ed enjoying the service and hospitality aboard the flight

Unfortunately, Ed's luck didn't change for the better. Upon posting several pictures to Facebook of the plane and the cabin in excitement, Ed inadvertently broke some rules that had apparently not been explained.



"They didn't tell me nothing," Ed said in defense. "If I had known that [taking pictures] was against the rules, I wouldn't have taken 'em." Regardless of his apologies, the sponsoring charity organization for his first flight denied him future flights after he arrived in LA.

Ed was awaiting his treatment at the hospital when the limo driver that taxi'ed him there came in and said that he had to leave. This limo driver said that he was called off the assignment and was to report back immediately.

Ed was shocked. According to what he'd been told, he would be assured travel between PHL to LA and taxi service before and after his treatment. He called in to find out what had happened but was met with only the basics.


A gentleman from the charity spoke with Ed in a very angry tone: he was not happy that pictures of the plane had made it online. Ed was able to keep the driver on hand while working things out over the phone. While they didn't want to, the charity service provided him a flight back from his treatment via commercial air liner. 

Ed was told after returning home that he would not be able to get continue getting charity flights. Apparently, from the conversation that Ed had, the owner of the plane was contacted directly with a complaint that the photos were being distributed. Ed doesn't have direct proof, but he's confident that it was either State or Federal authorities.

Who's at the controls of charity flights? Can't someone help Ed out?
"I don't have a way to prove it, but I know it was them." Ed stated, assuring me that he knows that the government was responsible for his plight.

His logical explanation was that few people that follow him on Facebook would call in a complaint about charity he receives and that it is likely that Federal and/or State authorities would have the resources to look up the plane owner with ease using just the ID numbers and letters on the side of the turbine.



This, if actually a government action, would not be the first of its kind. Ed has been targeted by the government in LA as well while he was operating a State legal medicinal marijuana shop. His crop was raided, his shop was taken away and all of his assets were frozen. Because of this previous altercation, Ed said that he's sure that the government is trying to "screw him", and he might be right.

"This is twice now that they did this to me. They're deliberately making it harder for me because they want me to fail. They want my message to fail." Ed said.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

N.A. Poe Released; Kokesh to Await Trial in Jail


According to sources on site, N.A. Poe will be released from Federal Detention and Adam Kokesh will be staying in until the next trial.

"This just in - our prophet and savior, man of the people, N.A. Poe has been blessed by Justice the Guardian of Liberty and is being released shortly on ROR. Praise to Jah." ~The Panic Hour

"Kokesh is refusing to give his address, so he's staying in jail for now." ~ James Babb, Activist and noted FIJA Supporter

Adam Kokesh displaying what's imagined to be .02% of his arsenal


According to sources at the Federal Detention Center at 700 Arch Street in Philadelphia where N.A. Poe and Adam Kokesh have been kept since the 18th, Adam Kokesh will remain imprisoned on the grounds of non-compliance as he has yet to release his address in Pretrial Questioning.

N.A. Poe Released on Recognizance, 5/23/2013


On a brighter note, N.A. Poe of the Panic Hour will be Released on Recognizance shortly, as said on the Panic Hour's Facebook page. Expect more details shortly.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Adam Kokesh and N.A. Poe Have Initial Hearing; 72 Hour Detention before Detention Trial and Admission of Probable Cause


It was a somber hall of dissipating, fading, echoing happiness of the convicted paired with the ritzy elitism of the upper class. Stepping into the Federal Detention Building of Philadelphia to witness Adam Kokesh and N.A. Poe among council and Judge was a sobering reminder of the grisly take down of Poe and Adam at Smoke Down Prohibition V. Steve Miller-Miller was songless. Mike Whiter of Philly NORML slipped into "active duty mode" on a strict diet of sleep deprivation.


Of all things, the tiny, archer-slit windows of this gargantuan building stood out first amid a pale, grey stone exterior. Behind those windows were lives. There were children at home, cancer to treat, college loans to be paid and so many other circumstances that drift by us on our radio-filled commute to work. There are people behind those windows and not all of them are guilty.

N.A. Poe
Adam Kokesh



















Accused of interfering in the ability of the Park Rangers to do their job and resisting arrest, both N.A. Poe and Adam Kokesh have been imprisoned at the Federal Detention Building at 700 Arch St. They participated in the Smoke Down Prohibition V event: N.A. Poe as the organizer along with Philly NORML in sponsorship of activism in marijuana law reform. Adam Kokesh had not even smoked any marijuana at the time of 4:20 PM, when Federal Park Rangers descended into the crowd and took out Kokesh and Poe in cuffs.



Adam, a former Marine, held high against the back of the knee kicks of the officers. They tried to bring him to his knees, but his integrity stood ground. He had his arms lifted in a "surrender" motion and he was backing up along with them. If any dignity to his training, two Federal Park Rangers could not bring a former Marine to his knees.

N.A. Poe had just lit a cigarette and the Park Rangers came at him while also ganging up on Ed Forchion, aka: New Jersey Weedman. According to confidential sources, what appeared to be a higher ranking officer, outfitted in a bullet-proof vest, told the officers around Ed to, "Let him go," to which Ed walked out without arrest. Hundreds of people witnessed this event and many got footage of it. Poe apparently ran up to NJ Weedman prior to being gripped up by Park Rangers. Poe was yanked back by an officer and Poe proceeded to dodge and block in a frantic hope to escape what was going to happen.

The Park Rangers got their men.

Since the 18th, they have also held their men; OUR men who we want back at OUR shoulders and at OUR podiums. That is why many came to witness the event of the Initial Hearing of both of them.


We sat opposite each other and besides ourselves. We glanced. We stretched. We waited. It was a cold environment; polished marble, hard pew-style seating and all the Boot of nearly three-hundred years of tradition lodged firmly betwixt our buttocks at the moment. No electronic devices were allowed in the court room, so hence, there are no pictures of the pair at their current states of respective fortitude. Kokesh and Poe were sights we all wanted to see. See AND share. Unfortunately, phones and devices were checked at the gate.

Roughly five minutes to 1:30 PM, we were invited into the court. It was small yet had all the essentials of a court room. We waited for roughly ten minutes for Government officials representing the Federal Government in the case to show as well as the Federal Defense Attorney and others. There was chat in the "peanut gallery" over this case. It wasn't the typical Initial Hearing, I'm sure. In ways, unfortunately, it was.

As the Judge entered, we all stood and greeted him, awaiting his "you may be seated" as though we were in church responding to a Pastor. He sat down and addressed a man who had filled out paperwork in Pre-Trial disclosures. He looked to be in civilian clothing and represented by the female Federal Defense Attorney present. After he was dismissed, we saw a much missed face: Adam Kokesh was walked by a Federal Marshall gripping his arm to his seat as Defendant.

Adam's resolve the entire time was steely: his eyes glimmered with righteous purpose. His replies were simple nods of his heads behind a chiseled grin. When the Judge gave him his two recommendations concerning his rights, it was reiterated that if he did not have council, one could be appointed for him. It was also stated that, "anything you say or do can be used against you." Adam must have taken that to heart.

Sticking firmly by his right afforded in the Bill of Rights, Kokesh did not answer when the Judge spoke to him asking if he understood.

"Can you hear me?" Said the Judge.

The judge reiterated that council would be provided and asked if Adam would like said council. He said nothing again, so the Judge beckoned the Fed. Defense Attorney, Felicia Sarner, to give Mr. Kokesh coucil. Adam again smiled and nodded a bunch at the Defense Attorney, but it was to no end. Adam wasn't talking.

At this point, council intervened and requested a pause to speak with Adam. More nodding, no words. Along came Federal Defense Attorney Felicia Sarner. Ms. Sarner made it clear afterwards that her office has been appointed the case and that she may not necessarily be his lawyer. For the time though, she was doing all she could to break through to him.

When the trial moved to an issue of whether Adam was going to be released, the acting Federal Official representing the Government on behalf of the Parks and Recreation Services argued that his "noncompliance" was an issue and that a hold order be placed for 72 hours until a Detention and Probable Cause Hearing. Thursday at 1:30 PM. Apparently Kokesh has been giving EVERYONE the silent treatment - even going as far as to not answer to Pre-Trial screening questions. Click. The gavel went down. Adam went out. Poe was following Kokesh right afterwards.

Poe was released from handcuffs at the Defendant's chair. The Judge went through the spiel again.

It was the same as Adam's charge. Neither Poe nor Kokesh were charged with a marijuana related offense. They were only assessed a charge of interfering with the Park Ranger's ability to perform their duties.

Poe looked a bit pale. He was either distant or very resistant to questions from the Judge. When asked if he would like to take council, Poe stared out bleakly and said nothing for several seconds. After a second round of the Judge's same phrasing, Poe blurted out "Sure". Rather than appoint Poe Ms. Sarner, the Judge appointed him Attorney Borden who was not present. When the Government had their opportunity to chime in on whether conditional release were an option, detainment was recommended for Poe as well. Reasoning behind Poe's detainment was a bit different.

Claims of extreme drug abuse came forward. The Federal Parks and Services Official went as far as to say that rehab may be ordered before the trial can even begin. Immediately the Judge agreed and banged. With that bang, Poe went off.

"Are you fucking SERIOUS? That's horrendous. You know it is, it's HORRENDOUS."

Poe was shackled back up and led back to a grim grey world of horrors unknown. It seems as though the pair lost today, but the battle is far from over. Come Thursday at 1:30 PM, Poe will also be back for a Detention and Probable Cause Hearing.

It is important to point out that when reading the charges against the two, the Judge consistently stated that they were "willfully obstructing, resisting or interfering with a Federal Law Enforcement agent, namely, Park Services."

In 18 USC § 118, The Interference with Certain Protective Functions line reads:

Any person who knowingly and willfully obstructs, resists, or interferes with a Federal law enforcement agent engaged, within the United States or the special maritime territorial jurisdiction of the United States, in the performance of the protective functions authorized under section 37 of the State Department Basic Authorities Act of 1956 (22 U.S.C. 2709) or section 103 of the Diplomatic Security Act (22 U.S.C. 4802) shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both.



This statute is not confirmed to be their charge, nor their only charge, however, phrasing that the Judge used in court corresponded perfectly to the line, "willfully obstructed, resisted or interfered with..." so at very least, this code should be brought to everyone's attention.

All in all, a year in prison and a fine. Federal "Pound Me In The A--" Jail, too - to take a quote from "Office Space". Not a pleasant environment. We will continue to cover and protest the arrest of these two men and we will work to keep Justice alive in Philadelphia.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Adam Kokesh and NA Poe Arrested at Smoke Down Philly 5



NA Poe and Adam Kokesh have been arrested and brought to the Federal Building at 700 Arch Street. Several others were arrested through the course of the event including individuals handing out fliers on ending the Fed! Most speakers were able to say their piece prior to 4:20pm, which is when, during the moment of marijuana reflection, Adam Kokesh was gripped up by grimy, pea-brained authoritarians drunk on power. Adam had not even lit or smoked a joint of his own - he was simply targeted because he is a controversial radio/ Podcast host with plans to conduct an armed march on Washington DC in peaceful protest of the assaults on our 2nd Amendment rights.

NA Poe reportedly "shoved" a Federal officer though witness accounts vary. Poe was abruptly shoved to the ground and held by many officers. He was held for a couple of minutes under the weight of at least two arresting officers, then he was escorted away to the "base of operations" where the Park Rangers had amassed to observe the event.

Crowds boo'ed, chanted and video recorded the entire time, ensuring that the actions of the officers and the Police Chiefs on scene would be seen by all across the nation. NORML Philly organizers remain free. They have begun solidarity movements at the Federal Building both the evening after Smoke Down and also the day after, (5-19-13) protesting the arrests.

Video will be up shortly - check back for details.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Rep. Steven Cohen (D-TN) Rips Eric Holder a New Bunghole on Federal Marijuana Policy


Rep. Steven Cohen (D-TN) is NOT having it anymore. He is thoroughly done being overlooked and unheard after extraneous efforts to forward the reform of marijuana laws in the US. Cohen has backed efforts to get back into step with the public opinion on marijuana and he has long been a proponent of ending the drug war. Well, Eric Holder had an open forum in form of a House oversight hearing this past Wednesday, (May 15th, 2013) and he was unprepared for the feedback that Cohen had prepared.

While most other doddering bobble heads in the halls of Congress pinned Holder on the recent scandals concerning the invasion of privacy committed against the Associated Press and also the "outrageous" unfair targeting of Tea Party groups applying for their tax-exempt statuses, Cohen quietly brooded over The Justice Department's refusal to acknowledge the public favor of medicinal marijuana programs and the States' rights to decide best practice regarding marijuana policy. When given the opportunity, Rep. Cohen had this to say,




"One of the greatest threats to liberty has been the government taking people’s liberty for things that people are in favor of. The Pew Research Group shows that 52 percent of people do not think marijuana should be illegal. And yet there are people in jail, and your Justice Department is continuing to put people in jail, for sale, and use, on occasion, of marijuana. That’s something the American public has finally caught up with. It was a cultural lag. And it’s been an injustice for 40 years in this country to take people’s liberty for something that was similar to alcohol. You have continued what is allowing the Mexican cartels power, and the power to make money, ruin Mexico, hurt our country by having a Prohibition in the late 20th and 21st century. We saw it didn’t work in this country in the 20s. We remedied it. This is the time to remedy this Prohibition, and I would hope you would do so."

Holder's response to this has not been widely documented, though if it followed suit with his previous comments regarding this issue, it would sound something along the lines of, "We're getting around to it". Despite his assurance after the votes were in from CO and WA showing that the people's voice says to legalize marijuana that a Federal response would be provided, it has been six months with no clear statement from the Administration.

Regional Federal officials, however, have started a response of their own in the form of a crackdown on established dispensaries and new businesses. They have threatened and raided hundreds of dispensaries in the past term of Obama and this term looks to be no different in their mind.

It is our RESPONSIBILITY to tell them in a loud voice that the actions performed by the DOJ and Federal Law Enforcement in Obama's first term are NOT going to fly in the second. We have the power and our voice is starting to increase in volume as we make steady gains in legalizing medicinal marijuana as well as recreational marijuana use among responsible adults in our own States.

Contact your elected officials today and tell them that you are PRO full legalization of marijuana!
  

Bill Proposed to Keep the FED's From Raiding MMJ Patients and Caregivers

Dana Rohrbacher, (R-CA) Basically Says, "Back off of the patients and dispensaries, FED's..."


Dana Rohrbacher, (R-CA) has undertaken the ongoing fight to keep the Federal government away from State legal dispensaries, patients and grow fields. His proposed bill, HR 1523, "Respect State Marijuana Laws Act" was brought before Congress by a bipartisan coalition including Rohrbacher and two other Republicans and three Democrats. In a prepared statement, Rohrbacher said,

"This bipartisan bill represents a common-sense approach that establishes federal government respect for all states' marijuana laws...It does so by keeping the federal government out of the business of criminalizing marijuana activities in states that don't want it to be criminal."

In addition to the "Respect State Marijuana Laws Act", several other bills have been proposed on this very topic. They include:

 House Resolution 499: The Ending Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2013

House Bill 689: the States' Medical Marijuana Patient Protection Act

Senate Bill 359: the Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2013

New Poll: 85% of Americans In Favor of Medicinal Marijuana Legalization



According to a new poll conducted by FOX News via telephone, almost nine out of ten Americans, (including 80 percent of respondents that identified themselves as Republicans) said that marijuana should be legal if its use is permitted by a physician. With over 1,000 respondents that were registered voters, this poll was overseen by Anderson Robbins Research (D) and Shaw & Company Research (R). There is a ±3% margin of error, but even at 82% in favor of legal medical marijuana, it is clear that the current marijuana laws are archaic and need to be revised on a Federal and State level.

This poll is considered a scientific poll and it shows an increase of 4% in support of medical marijuana since the last FOX poll on the subject in 2010. Major "keywords" of the poll include "legal for adults" and "physician prescribed". This poll comes after a recent Pew poll that found 52% of Americans in favor of legalizing cannabis for adults regardless of prescription or medical use.

Despite the fact that support is at an all time high for medical marijuana access, bills in the House and Senate designed to protect the rights of patients that accept cannabis treatment in States allowing for its use are making little headway when it comes to cosponsors and chances of being heard on their assigned committees.

For example, 
HB 689, the States' Medical Marijuana Patient Protection Act  has a mere 16 co-sponsors out of 435 House members. If you're interested in voicing your support, HB 689 has been referred to the House Energy and Commerce Committee; Subcommittee on Health (contact info on the bottom right of the page) and also to the House Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations, (contact info at the bottom of the page - send emails "In Care Of" the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigations). Neither committee has given the bill a hearing yet. Another example is the "Respect State Marijuana Laws Act" presented this year by California US Representative, Dana Rohrbacher. This bill, HB1523, is cosponsored only by the following Reps:

Justin Amash (R-Mich.)
Don Young (R-Alaska)
Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.)
Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.)
Jared Polis (D-Colo.)

Be sure to contact your local and State Congress members and voice your support for getting these bills a hearing! If we're going to see the change we want, the only way to be heard is by telling your elected officials that you are PRO full legalization of marijuana!

IMAGE: Wake And Bake Time


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

IMAGE: Fresh Budding Marijuana



Dept. of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) Informing Gun Dealers that MMJ Patients Are Exempt from 2nd Amendment

Gun_N_Weed
These things are not mutually exclusive and it SCARES the dickens out of the government

In a major encroachment against the 2nd Amendment rights of patients using medical marijuana, the Department of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms has apparently reached out to gun dealers informing them that it is now illegal to sell guns to registered MMJ patients. According to the Gun Control Act, because marijuana is illegal Federally, registered patients are automatically considered Federal criminals and therefore, they are exempted of their rights to purchasing a firearm, voting and sitting on a Jury of their peers, among other things.



Though this move is extremely difficult to enforce considering there is no mandate to cross check during gun registration or purchases for anything except felony conviction, this is an obvious sign of what the current administration wants to do by implementing tighter gun restrictions. By taking away the right to keep and bear arms among all dissidents of the current system and laws, the Federal government hopes to stave off drastic political change or governmental upheaval by armed revolt.

While it has long been a claim of marijuana smokers that they are exceptionally peaceable, (even Robin Williams said in one of his skits, "I ain't never met me an angry pot smoker,") the blatant efforts of the government to undermine our rights as set forth in the Bill of Rights have been raising major issues with many citizens.

 In related news, former Marine and Podcast pundit, Adam Kokesh, has proposed a July 4th protest march where participants will be marching form the Virginia border into Washington DC with loaded firearms slung around their backs. In DC, it is illegal by District code to openly bear a firearm. Kokesh has amassed thousands of willing participants and despite warnings of potential arrest from law enforcement in DC, all participants plan to make the march a success. He also has stated numerous times that this will be a peaceful protest and that anyone subject to arrest should surrender their firearms and submit to the due process without incident.

Guns and marijuana aren't mutually exclusive. In the current black market, they are often tied together, even. Unfortunately for those who would infringe on our rights, the Bill of Rights is clear: we have the duty and responsibility to keep and bear arms. Not just to hunt with, but to keep the ever expanding Federal government in check by threat of armed revolt. Kokesh gets it. Do you?

One thing you share in common either way, is that both Adam Kokesh and the majority of Americans these days are PRO full legalization of marijuana.

IMAGE: In Weed We Trust


No Love for Holder at Berkeley: Pot Protesters Galore


Boo Hoo
Eric Holder looks less than enchanted...

If you guessed that Eric Holder had a bad time in California when he visited the University of California Berkeley to speak to the graduating class of law students. Well planned so that it could be seen when Holder arrived, a private aircraft flew circles over Berkeley with a sign that read, "Holder: End Rx Cannabis War #Peace4Patients". That wasn't the only message that Holder received on the topic as he pulled into the campus.

Reportedly, "dozens" of activists met his limo as it pulled up into Berkeley and they chanted and waved signs in favor of cannabis legalization.  California NORML's President, Dale Gieringer stated, "He can't come to Berkeley and not be reminded of his department's bad faith with respect to marijuana". Holder should be reminded every time that he is seen in public that his administration's efforts to shut down established medical dispensaries in California and across the country are not the "last priority" mindset that Obama claimed they would take on cannabis, oh so many years ago.

Holder nor Obama has made any attempt at officially challenging the Colorado or Washington marijuana laws that passed with the majority of popular vote over the past election. While it has been six months since the dawn of legalized marijuana in two States of the US, the administration refuses to come out and declare that they will continue shutting down State legal operations - mostly because they know that it would be political suicide and that it would lead to a national conversation in the media about legalizing cannabis.

Until those who are still CON concerning marijuana retreat their concept of MINORITY RULES, MAJORITY HAS NO RIGHTS, the 52% of Americans that feel that marijuana possession, growth and use should not be a crime will continue to slag the opposition and catch them in lies. We are PRO full legalization of marijuana.

14th NJ District Senate Candidate Don DeZarn Smokes a Joint in Hamilton Park in Protest

Don DeZarn smoking a joint
Don DeZarn puffing on a joint in Hamilton Park


NJ State Senate candidate Don DeZarn took a radical approach when promoting his upcoming bid for a Senate seat: at Hamilton Park when addressing supporters and pedestrians at the park, DeZarn whipped out a joint from deeply embedded in his sock and he made a bold declaration.

“Yes, I will be firing one up in public. Hopefully you will be able to run a story on Tuesday titled ‘State Senate candidate arrested at press conference.”

Don proceeded to light and smoke the joint while addressing the issue of the drug war to the public. He went on to say, “Who is this for? This is for all of my brothers and sisters who are being held prisoners of war by our government as a result of our war on drugs,” as he took several puffs on the joint. While a step outside of traditional, DeZarn represents the Libertarian Party for the nomination of the Senate seat and he faces off against tough candidates such as the incumbent,  Democratic Sen. Linda Greenstein as well as the Republican Former Senator, Peter Inverso.

Peter Inverso
Linda Greenstein












“It’s just something that I see as a tremendous waste of taxpayer money,” he said. “It’s complete insanity that we spend that type of money when there are far worse things out there. ... There isn’t really a good reason for it to be illegal in my mind.” DeZarn said while smoking and speaking publicly. Indeed, it has been a "tremendous waste of taxpayer money". According to NORML, the cost to taxpayers since the inception of cannabis prohibition stands at over 4.02 BILLION dollars. They also calculate statistics showing what could have been a profit of over 11 billion should we have integrated cannabis further into our culture rather than cutting it out of the picture in the late 1930's.



DeZarn stands shakily in interview dialogue concerning his ability to win the election. “Just the campaign itself is a long shot...Even if my two opponents were indicted in a federal corruption probe a week before the election I’m still not sure I’d win.” Though DeZarn admits openly that his bid is a long shot, the support for cannabis legalization in the US has recently surpassed the majority mark according to recent Pew poll results. 52% of Americans believe that cannabis should be legal and even more are adamant that the Federal government should butt out of State's rights concerning medical programs.

Though DeZarn's campaign may raise an eyebrow or two about the efficacy of third party candidates winning majority support, one thing is clear. His activism and support for this issue paired with the increasing popularity of the issue will make it very difficult for other candidates to dodge the issue in the future.

Further, the NJ Weedman is currently offering all New Jersey residents who've been charged criminally on counts of marijuana related offenses to come forward and file a "Motion of Dismissal" that he has prepared on his site. He argues that since NJ has both criminal and medicinal laws on the books, the most recent legislation overrides previous statutes. DeZarn has not commented on this in interview, but it's safe to presume that DeZarn is PRO full legalization of marijuana.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Michigan Attorney General: Recreational Marijuana Use NOT Grounds for State Custody of Children

It may be bad journalism, but there are two rules that are going to be broken in this first sentence: 1) I am going to speak in the first person and 2) I cannot cite all of the references I have regarding this topic. First, I feel that this topic is strongly emotional and I am compelled to tell a first person narrative moreso than outline the "who, what, why, where and how". Secondly, due to the overwhelmingly emotional nature of this topic, my own heart cannot stand to review the previous cases of human rights abuses that I've seen just in the past month regarding this issue.

At least three times in the past month alone, and more when counting back another month, I have seen stories posted about parents who were not only raided through extreme force of SWAT teams, but also who've lost their children to the State over small amounts of marijuana and marijuana paraphernalia. Children as old as three years old, who've spent every waking moment with their parents, in peace, are being ripped out of the loving arms of their caretakers and being put in cold, distant facilities with strangers to whom they share no affection.

This literally disgusts me to the point of heartache.

Imagine being a father or a mother, casually drinking a few beers with friends, when all of a sudden on no particular Saturday night, your front door is busted in, you hear gunshots and your dog yelp out its last, painful yelp. All of a sudden you're being surrounded by fully armored SWAT officers that are yelling to GET DOWN and NOT TO RESIST OR THEY WILL SHOOT. Your children are crying, your friends are scared out of their minds and you are left alone as your husband is shot for making a sudden move. You are in disbelief. Everything is surreal. This CAN'T be happening. You refocus as soon as you see an officer grab your son by the arm and yank him behind the police line of guns and shields. You boil. Your infant is lifted less than gracefully from her highchair and carried away before your eyes.

Why?

Because you got intoxicated. Because you chose to celebrate life with alcohol, with friends.

This may not be the case in our society but it is EXACTLY what happens to some marijuana smokers. Despite the fact that marijuana is less addictive and less dangerous than alcohol, cannabis remains illegal according to the Federal government and they're not afraid to send Federal officers to residential homes to disrupt peaceable citizens over a marginally upsetting life choice. Looking past the stigma built up over the past seventy-five years, marijuana use is looking less and less upsetting when compared to the debt and lies that we've been hit with over punishing people for a victimless crime.

Well, thank GOD, the Attorney General in Michigan, Bill Schuette, has decided that marijuana use is NOT a valid reason for the State to take custody of our children. This decision came in response to a question posed by State Senator, Rick Jones. A huge thanks is due from across the country to Rick Jones and to Bill Schuette for leading the pack in sensible policy that doesn't do more harm than the circumstance itself.

Cannabis is proving to be a battleground between the individual rights of US citizens and the Federal government's warrant over the life choices of the same, said, citizens. While government agencies themselves recommend the integration of cannabis into our society, the administration cannot come to terms with cutting off its own perceived arm by disbanding much of the lifeblood that the DEA and other illegal government branches use to justify their expanse of power over the individual citizen. I have one thing to say about that.

300,000,000 > 300,000

Count every government employee against every citizen, and you will lose every time.

IMAGE: Weed? What Weed?


Smoked Marijuana Proven Effective in Treating Crohn's Disease

According to research recently completed at the Meir Medical Center in Israel. it has been conclusively proven that in test subjects unable to mitigate symptoms of Crohn's Disease via traditional medications, smoked cannabis treatments were effective in significantly reducing symptoms in all treated with THC and the disease was even put into remission for some patients.



Published in the journal Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, a total of 21 subjects were studied that had been unresponsive to other treatments for Crohn's Disease. Half were administered a placebo cigarette and half were treated with THC rich cigarette. It was found that in those who were treated with smoked, THC rich cigarettes saw a 100 point decrease in their CDAI (Crohn’s Disease and activity index) which is the standard measure of severity of this disease.

Beyond the fact that all participants that received THC rich cigarette treatments seeing an average of a 100 point drop in their CDAI scores, five [5] of the participants reported complete remission of the disease, (represented by a 150 point reduction in their CDAI scores). This shows that even as a smoked joint, marijuana has clear and undeniable medical benefits, at very least, to those suffering from Crohn's Disease. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is another bowel disease that has been reported to ease with marijuana treatments. Several States that have medical marijuana programs include IBS in their list of illnesses that can be treated using medicinal marijuana.

According to the LA Times, as recently as January, 2013, US Justices denied activist appeals against the Schedule I designation of cannabis, (putting it in the same boat as heroin and crack; "no accepted medicinal value" and "high risk of abuse"). Instead, the Justices ruled in favor of the DEA's judgement that cannabis should remain a Schedule I drug. LA Times reported,

Judge Harry Edwards, writing for the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, said the judges did not dispute that "marijuana could have some medical benefits." Instead, he said, they were not willing to overrule the DEA because they had not seen large "well-controlled studies" that proved the medical value of marijuana. ~ LA Times

NJ Weedman Working to Get Clarity on New Jersey's Weed Laws



Among the best known marijuana activists from New Jersey, Ed Forchion, aka: the NJ Weedman, has been wrapped up in legal battles nearly non-stop regarding cannabis. His use of Jury Nullification to hang Juries and exonerate him from what would have been ludicrous criminal sentences have resounded across the East Coast. Now, NJ Weedman is taking a step further in his home State of New Jersey.

Ed has recently filed a twelve page motion in the State of New Jersey allowing ANY persons who've been arrested on marijuana charges to JOIN him in fighting to change the laws in favor of an evolving view on marijuana use, (just fill out the highlighted parts and send it according to the instructions listed at the bottom of the PDF - remember not to send the instructions along with your motion of dismissal!). Since New Jersey currently has medicinal marijuana laws on the books, and because those said laws have been put into effect more recently than the criminal definitions and regulations concerning cannabis, Ed is encouraging people to question the New Jersey government on whether the newest laws can trump the old ones.

Forchion stated in an interview, “I’m tired of being a one-man gang, I’ve been arguing these arguments for years. I’m just putting it out there. I don’t care who does it, but let’s get it done.” His brief basically states that since former Governor Jon Corzine signed the New Jersey medicinal marijuana laws into effect, (January 18th, 2010) all marijuana arrests should become null and void.

While this may seem like a daunting hill to climb, the real question behind this must be addressed: which law supersedes when there are two laws in conflict within New Jersey? Medical laws allow patients to possess and use cannabis. Ed "NJ Weedman" Forchion has medical cards in several States that allow for medical marijuana, (not New Jersey, however). Whereas other States honor other State's medicinal cards as proof of need for this medicine, New Jersey's medical marijuana laws are very strict and to be frank, not well thought out.

Not only is New Jersey unwilling to accept medical marijuana ID cards from other States, other pot marks exist in the history of the legislation. For example, at one point it had been argued that New Jersey dispensaries must "limit" the percentage of THC in the medical marijuana that they distribute. As each strain has a variable THC content depending upon multiple factors, accomplishing this goal would be extremely time consuming and would induce TONS of wasted product that could be used as good medicine to those that need it.

Ed is through playing games in his home State when it comes to the best medicine that he has found for his rare bone tumor condition.

“They could have corrected this little problem, but they did nothing,” said Forchion. 

“The implementation of the medical marijuana act, in effect, made the criminal status null and void and canceled it out. You have a law saying something is blue and something is red, and they punish you for doing it red,” Ed stated in response to the contradictory nature of New Jersey statutes concerning marijuana.

Indeed, the marijuana legislation in New Jersey, just as across the country is all askew. While marijuana is legally medicine and allowed to be prescribed, it is still criminal to possess when found by Officers of the law. While we will live to see a day when over half of the States in the USA recognize medicinal marijuana and allow it, our Federal government refuses to adjust with the times. Even in lieu of Federal agencies, institutes and Centers stating repeatedly that cannabis has medicinal properties, the Department of Justice refuses to mandate that Congress reclassify cannabis under "the Controlled Substances Act", (currently putting marijuana in the same bracket as crack and heroin; as a Schedule I drug, marijuana is claimed to hold a "high risk of abuse" and "have no recognized medicinal value").

The FDA is still being petitioned by a number of cannabis-related science companies and even governmental agencies to recognize marijuana as a medicine. Ed Forchion's case of bone tumor treatment is proof in and of itself that cannabis works as medicine. There are countless stories like his, too. People are using cannabis oil to treat cancerous tumors and they are beating the illness, even in doctor diagnosed "hopeless cases". For more information, check out Rick Simpson's page on Phoenix Tears

IMAGE: George Washington Grew Weed


No Link Between Cannabis Use and Lung Cancer, Says American Association of Cancer Research

University of California researchers have once again concluded a study that shows that cannabis does not have the detrimental effects once thought and taught by doctors, politicians, teachers and law enforcement. Whereas at one point during D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education), I distinctly recall being told that a SINGLE JOINT was just as detrimental to the lungs and body as ONE PACK OF CIGARETTES, recent findings published in The Oncology Report show otherwise.

The study included data from six case-control studies conducted from 1999 to 2012 in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and New Zealand, with a subject pool of 2,159 lung cancer cases and 2,985 controls. All of the studies were part of the International Lung Cancer Consortium (ILCCO), an international group of lung cancer researchers with the aim of sharing comparable data from ongoing and recently completed lung cancer studies from different geographical areas and ethnicities...

When compared with cannabis smokers who also used tobacco, habitual pot smokers had no significant increase in cancer risk. In an analysis of marijuana smokers that excluded tobacco smokers, there were no significant differences in any of the comparisons, including habitual vs. nonhabitual use; number of joints smoked per day; duration of up to 20 years or duration of more than 20 years.

This obviously flies in the face of previous schools of thought claiming marijuana to be detrimental to the body in terms of carcinogenic content. Despite this conclusive research, it is almost assured that the government will continue to deny that marijuana is at very least, "neutral" to an individual's health. Consistently, the campaign to maintain validity of the DEA and countless billions of dollars that go to incarceration and propaganda that keeps the stigma of "reefer madness" alive.

It's time to contact our local officials and raise up uproariously to call that marijuana be legalized Federally. It is time to push off the old "Schedule I" mentality in favor of an integration of the cannabis plant into our medicine and our recreational scene.

Without emailing and contacting our legislators, they will never consider this issue important. Only by vastly outnumbering those with financially vested interests against cannabis can we be a serious force that is heard by our government!

See the Action / Resources Page for current petitions on Change.org.

Pennsylvania is Pushing to be the Keystone State for Cannabis Legalization on the East Coast

Pennsylvania has lagged behind many New England States in regard to cannabis law reform, but that may be changing soon. While States such as Vermont, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island have moved forward to offer patients access to medicinal marijuana, PA has only recently begun pushing through legislation for medicinal marijuana.

In the wake of Washington and Colorado legalizing the use of cannabis for any reason among adults, a PA State Senator named Daylin Leach has introduced SB 528, the "Regulate Marijuana Act" for Pennsylvanians. Though PA has lagged even behind New Jersey in terms of medical access to marijuana, it stands to be the first East Coast State to legalize marijuana for all reasons among adult users. Philadelphia has been a hub of major support for legalization.

Recently in the past year, events such as Smokedown Prohibition, hosted by Philly NORML and a comedy troop called The Panic Hour have shown consistently growing turnout and speakers including the NJ Weedman, Hempland Security representatives and Kevin Clough, Executive Director of Philly NORML. There have been patients who beat cancer using cannabis and advocates for justice through Jury Nullification that fight unjust criminal convictions.

 There is currently a petition on Change.org available here that will be sent at the end of May, 2013 to the Law and Justice Department of the Pennsylvania Senate, (this is the committee to which SB 528 has been assigned for review). Take the time to e-sign and send a loud message to the PA Senate - we want cannabis legal in Pennsylvania not only for its amazing medical benefits but also because it is a non-lethal substance with less intoxicating effects than alcohol!

Vermont Senate Votes in Favor of Decriminalizing Cannabis

Vermont now not only has legislation allowing for the use of medical marijuana, it now has made major progress in decriminalizing cannabis use. Both the Vermont Senate and House have approved bills respective to their department of Congress in favor of decriminalizing cannabis use in the State. They will now work out a compromise between the two bills and forward the legislation to Vermont's governor, Peter Shumlin, who has already expressed that he is in favor of signing the bill into law. Read the full story via NORML's News page Vermont pushes closer towards the ultimate passage of the bill that has been proposed to legalize cannabis similarly to how Washington and Colorado had during the last election. Find the full text of the Vermont legalization bill here.

Maryland Passes Medical Marijuana Legislation in Senate - Heads to Governor

On April 8th, the Maryland Senate passed legislation legalizing marijuana for medicinal purposes in the State. As seen in California and other medicinally legal States, this legislation will allow for the cultivation and sale of medicinal cannabis for patients suffering from a variety of ailments including bowel illnesses, cancerous tumors, eye conditions like glaucoma and many other issues. In light of this move towards legalization, Maryland stands one step closer to legalizing cannabis for all purposes. There is currently a piece of legislation in Maryland that would legalize cannabis the same way that Washington and Colorado did in the last election. It can be found on Maryland's State government website here. If this legislation passes, it will make Maryland the 3rd State in the US to legalize cannabis for adult consumption. In addition to Maryland, there are seven other States considering outright marijuana legalization. They include: Nevada, Pennsylvania, Maine, Vermont, Oregon, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. If you live in any of these States, the only way to get the bills to move forward is to contact your local Representatives and Senators and let them know that you are in favor of legalizing cannabis. Emails and phone calls are thoroughly encouraged. As more States legalize similarly to Washington and Colorado, it will become increasingly difficult for the Federal government to ignore cannabis legalization as a major platform to address in upcoming elections.

Washington and Colorado Pass Historic Cannabis Legalization Legislation

This past election, State initiatives in Colorado and Washington yielded a positive result for the legalization of marijuana: both States determined that cannabis should be legal for both medicinal and recreational purposes. These initiatives are historic as they are the first that fly in the face of Federal law when it comes to the recreational use of marijuana. While cannabis is still scheduled under the Controlled Substances Act as a "Schedule I" drug, States have been legalizing it for medicinal purposes since California passed legislation in 1996. Being a schedule I drug, cannabis, according to the Federal government, has "a high risk for abuse" and "no acknowledged medicinal properties". Let it be known: even cocaine is listed as having medicinal properties according to the Controlled Substances Act, (it is currently scheduled as a Schedule II drug). According to the 44th President, Barack Obama, pursuing marijuana smokers and users will be "low" on the priority list of the administration. During his last term in office, however, his administration proved that his reassurance on the issue of medicinal and illegal cannabis cultivation and distribution was unfounded. More raids on dispensaries have occurred under Obama's first term as President than over the entire term of 43rd President, George W. Bush. Read the Story on Huffington Post Here With two States now pounding out State legislation to respect the will of the voting majority in respect to recreational marijuana business regulations, eight [8] more States have had legislation filed to legalize the adult consumption of cannabis for all purposes. These include: Rhode Island Vermont Massachusetts Maryland Nevada Maine Oregon Pennsylvania Hawaii had a bill to legalize that has already been defeated and Nevada's appointed committee has vowed to let their legalization bill die in committee. Without serious grassroots support, many of the other bills may suffer the same fate. It is important to note that without a gigantic outcry of voters, local and State politicians will not fear for their re-election should they oppose these bills, or just let them die in the committee without a hearing. Be sure to contact your elected officials via email or phone to let them know that this cause is important to you. There are petitions for all of these bills available through a quick search on Change.org.