Sunday, March 28, 2010

Cannabis legalization may be coming to the West Coast

What great news to hear. California has announced that the signature drive to put an initiative on the November ballot to legalize, tax and regulate cannabis for recreational use has easily gathered enough signatures to make the November ballot. It needed 433,971 signatures, and they gathered more than twice that before stopping the signature drive early. The board of elections has announced they have verified enough signatures to make the ballot. To me that's great news. But the news keeps getting better for drug law reform advocates.
In Washington State, we have initiative 1068, a bill that removes all criminal penalties for the production, sale and use of cannabis for adults over the age of 21 is gathering signatures right now. Here is the website you can visit if interested in helping to end cannabis prohibition
It enjoys solid support in the polls in our great state.
And on top of all of this, there is noise in Oregon that they may be making a push to legalize cannabis as well. Alot of this activity is due to the massive financial burden the war on drugs is placing on the tax payers, while commiting grave civil rights offenses on peaceful, law abiding citizens. The state politicians are beginning to catch up with the rest of the public on the issue of marijuana reform as well. We are starting to see politicians sponsoring more and more bills in an effort to legalize cannabis. California's State Board of Equalization estimates that legalization and taxation will produce approximately 1.4 Billion dollars in tax revenues. That's huge folks. That's a big chunk of cheddar to help close the massive budget shortfall they are having in that state. If you add to it the massive savings from the criminal justice system for legalization, and California is starting to look pretty smart folks.
All of this would also produce massive social change. Decades of the police using so much violence to suppress the very people they are sworn to protect, will start to come to an end. They have used cannabis prohibition as a tool to take our civil rights away, just a little at a time. Our Founding Fathers are rolling over in their graves because our society is subject to warantless searches, harassment, and SWAT teams using "violence of action" on a regular basis on it's citizens, alot of them completely non violent, and in quite a few cases, completely innocent of any criminal behavior, even by the messed up standards of our criminal justice system.
I would also put forth we would start to see far less alcohol abuse. There are alot of people out there that abuse alcohol, a very dangerous and addictive drug, with massive social and health consequences, that would likely stop if cannabis were legal. I used to self medicate myself with alot of alcohol to try to combat the horrible chronic pain from sports and work inuries, until I found medical cannabis. Since then, I have completely stopped my alcohol consumption. I honestly do not remember the last time I had a taste of any alcohol.
I'm writing all of this while sitting here on a very bad morning. The pain I am in sometimes has me crying everyday, in fact tears are free flowing right now. I can no longer straighten up all the way. My doctors are trying to draw me off the opiates at my request, but are starting to say that I probably shouldn't be off of them, and I'm unfortunately beginning to agree with them. I am frightened of obtaining the one medicine I can get that works better than opiates, because even though I am a qualifying patient, the police in this area have a very bad track record of harassing medical cannabis patients, and will not protect us from things such as home invasion robberies, which is becoming rather popular amongst the criminal element. Medical cannabis patients rarely fight back. State law says I am allowed to possess so much cannabis, it allows the cultivation of cannabis for me, so that I can have safe access. There is no dispensary system here, which would be really nice for those that cannot grow their own medicine. By legalizing it completely, it will make it easier for patients to get, and alot more difficult for children to obtain. The drug dealer on the corner isn't checking IDs for age, but I bet that package store clerk would be if someone were buying cannabis.
It's time folks. It's time for the people to start taking back their liberties. It's time to start holding our public servants accountable for their behavior towards us. It's time to start getting the government out of our living rooms. And it's time that all citizens of this nation are truly protected, and allowed to be free so long as they harm no one else. Why should we allow violent, body armored thugs with automatic weapons to bully us, all because they have a badge? Liberty is tied closely in with things such as drug law reform. They have been one of the single largest violators of our civil rights, next to the Patriot Act in my opinion. When the so called war on drugs ends, believe me, we will all be in a much better place. Our streets would become safer, the criminal gangs would lose a massive amount of their income, and legitimate, tax paying business people would offer employment, our prisons would begin to get less crowded, and we could get to work on the true problems in society. Come on folks, let's start to think about it a little. Let's start to open our minds up, do honest research. If you don't believe me, take 2 hours out of your time and research cannabis on your own, just keep an open mind. Dont start researching already believing that there is no way you will change your mind. And most especially, don't neccessarily believe what the government and the pharmaceutical industry may be telling you, what makes you truly think they have your best interests at heart? even if you don't like the fact that I use cannabis myself, why shouldn't you support my freedom to make that choice? I support your freedom to kill yourself with cigarettes and booze. Please support my right to live with a medicine that is safe, non addictive, and has no true dangerous side effects. Yes, even the munchies don't tend to get me down, I usually crave things like salads with vinnagerette dressings, raw veggies are where it's at for this so called pot head. Let's start to take freedom back, let's start to protect our constitution, and let's start to demand the accountability that should go into any public service.

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