7. CHRONICLE AM: SITSA ACT DRAWS OPPOSITION, CONGRESS MEDMJ PROTECTIONS ADVANCE, MORE... (6/15/18)
The Justice Department is once again likely to be barred from using its funds to go after state-legal medical marijuana, a broad coalition opposes the fast-moving SITSA Act, Portugal's parliament approves medical marijuana products, and more. https://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle/2018/jun/15/chronicle_am_sitsa_act_draws
10. CHRONICLE AM: CANADA LEGALIZES MARIJUANA! (6/20/18)
Canada has become the second country to legalize marijuana after final votes in parliament Tuesday, the Supreme Court agrees to hear an Indiana asset forfeiture case, Eleanor Holmes Norton files a bill to allow marijuana in public housing in states where
it's legal, and more. https://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle/2018/jun/20/chronicle_am_canada_legalizes
With final approval by the Senate Tuesday night, the Canadian parliament has legalized marijuana. That makes Canada the second country to legalize marijuana (after Uruguay), with what will be the world's second-largest legal marijuana market (after
Canada also becomes the first G7 country to free the weed. While nine US states and the District of Columbia have also legalized marijuana, it remains illegal under federal law here.
The move, fulfilling a campaign promise by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the ruling Liberal Party, puts an end to nearly a century of marijuana prohibition in the Great White North. It didn't come without a struggle, with Conservative senators
seeking to delay the measure and succeeding in pushing back the actual rollout date from a once-promised July to what now looks like September.
Under the Cannabis Act (http://www.parl.ca/LegisInfo/BillDetails.aspx?billId=8886269), people 18 and over (19 in some provinces) will be able to legally possess up to 30 grams of pot in public, and each household can grow up to four plants. The House of
Commons and the government turned back a Senate amendment that would have allowed provinces to ban home cultivation.
The law retains criminal penalties for possession of more than 30 grams or growing more than four plants, and includes an especially harsh provision mandating up to 14 years in prison for sales to minors.
Each province will have its own scheme (http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/province-pot-marijuana-legal-1.4405084) for handling sales, with some considerable variation. In Ontario and New Brunswick, for instance, sales will be handled by the province, while
in most other provinces, sales will be handled by the private sector or private-public collaborations. Marijuana will also be available for sale online.
But Canadians will have to wait for edibles. Marijuana-infused foods will not be available for purchase for some months until the government develops regulations for them.
Marijuana is already big business in Canada, generating an estimated $4.5 billion in sales in 2015 (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-42416763), and Canadian marijuana producers are already geared up to produce a huge legal marijuana crop (https:
//www.cantechletter.com/2018/05/canadas-pot-companies-are-growing-way-too-much-bud-this-investment-advisor-says/) -- in fact, maybe too huge. The two largest producers, Aurora Cannabis and Canopy Growth, are set to produce a million pounds each, while
second-tier producers will be adding to a possible glut.
But those are worries for down the road. Tuesday evening for was for celebrating.
"It's been too easy for our kids to get marijuana -- and for criminals to reap the profits. Today, we change that," a triumphant Trudeau tweeted just after the final vote.
"We've just witnessed a very historic vote that ends 90 years of prohibition," Liberal Senator Tony Dean told reporters. "It ends 90 years of needless criminalization, it ends a prohibition model that inhibited and discouraged public health and community
health in favor of just-say-no approaches that simply failed young people miserably."
Not everyone was pleased. Senator Leo Housakos, a Quebec conservative, tweeted forebodingly that passage of the law would be "catastrophic for Canadian generations to come."
But while Canadian conservatives foresaw disaster, American activists saw a model to emulate.
"Canada should be applauded for taking bold and decisive steps towards ending the failed prohibition of marijuana," said Hannah Hetzer, Senior International Policy Manager for the Drug Policy Alliance. "Canada's progress will galvanize support for drug
policy reforms in the US and all around the world."
Hetzer also lauded Canada's federalist approach to the issue and called for redressing the damage done to individuals by pot prohibition.
"Canada's decentralized system will give provinces the freedom to tailor marijuana legalization to their local needs and contexts, allowing us to study and learn from the many different models that will emerge," she said. "Canada should ensure that the
harms of marijuana prohibition are rectified, especially by expunging people's marijuana arrest records and by investing in communities most harmed by prohibition."
"This is a historic step forward for the movement to end marijuana prohibition," said Marijuana Policy Project spokesman Mason Tvert. "We commend the members of Parliament and the prime minister for their extraordinary demonstration of leadership on this
issue. Canada will set a great example for countries that are considering similar reforms, and it will inspire much-needed debate in those that are not."
While the US states have taken the lead, it's an end to federal prohibition that is required, said Tvert. "It is time for the US to take similar action and adopt a more rational federal marijuana policy. There has been a lot of positive movement in
Congress lately, so hopefully, members will be inspired to finally address this issue head-on, as Canada has."
bliss -- Cacao Powered... (-SF4ever at DSLExtreme dot com)
bobbie sellers - a retired nurse in San Francisco
"It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.
It is by the beans of cacao that the thoughts acquire speed,
the thighs acquire girth, the girth become a warning.
It is by theobromine alone I set my mind in motion."
--from Someone else's Dune spoof ripped to my taste.