Marijuana Politics

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Thu
12
Nov

15 States Have Now Legalized Recreational Cannabis. What About Hawaii?

Legalizing recreational use of marijuana in Hawaii might finally get some political traction at the Legislature now that 15 other states have taken the plunge and there is an urgent need for more tax revenue due to the pandemic.

State Attorney General Clare Connors has already assembled a working group of her deputies to advise lawmakers on the issues involved in legalizing and regulating marijuana. Some key House and Senate lawmakers support legalization, including Senate Majority Leader J. Kalani English, House Finance Chairwoman Sylvia Luke and Senate Judiciary Chairman Karl Rhoads.

But many in law enforcement remain strongly opposed to legalization for recreational use, and there will certainly be some political pushback against such a proposal.

Thu
12
Nov

Britain legalised medicinal cannabis - and then left it to stagnate

There's a bill going through the House of Lords which will decide how the country will regulate its medicines after January 2021. It's called the medicines and medical devices bill. Among other things, it will decide how a post-Brexit UK will maintain a high degree of patient access to the best medicines, guarantee patient safety and high manufacturing standards, and ensure British regulators do not stifle global investments into our life sciences industry.

The main sentiment underlying that debate is that Britain must retain its international reputation within the life sciences and pharmaceutical industries.

Thu
12
Nov

Drug decriminalization versus legalization: Here’s the difference

There’s a lot of buzz right now on drug decriminalization. Not only did Oregon recently become the first state to decriminalize possession of small amounts of all illegal substances, but President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris have made it their mission to do this at the national level with cannabis.

Some Americans believe this means the new administration plans to legalize the leaf in a manner similar to alcohol. They would be dead wrong. There are some subtle differences between decriminalization and legalization. What are they? The devil is in the details.

Thu
12
Nov

A Place Where Cannabis Is Tolerated, & Prosecutions Are Rare

With New Zealand’s recent referendum on the legalization of cannabis, the drug has become a subject worthy of public debate again.

In countless debates over marijuana worldwide, The Netherlands is often included as an example of a “marijuana-legal country”.

Photos of Dutch national queueing up outside “coffee shops” (the Dutch way of saying cannabis café) before they were closed due to the coronavirus pandemic further enhanced the country’s association as a weed smokers’ paradise.

While the conventional wisdom might be that cannabis is legal in this liberal country, the truth is that it is not, and will most likely not be legal in the future.

Thu
12
Nov

New York Governor Indicates State Will Legalize Recreational Marijuana This Year

In an interview with WAMC Northeast Public Radio on Thursday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that legalizing recreational marijuana in New York is very possible and could even happen soon.

"I think that this year [recreational legalization] is ripe because the state is going to be in desperate need of revenue."

He added, "I think the pressure is going to be on because we are going to need the money so badly, and you have such a [budget] gap now, I think it's going to be an easier conversation."

Wed
11
Nov

New Jersey Officials Moving Forward With New Marijuana Legislation

Less than a week after voters in New Jersey resoundingly passed a measure to legalize adult use marijuana, lawmakers in the state moved forward on plans to implement the new law.

A pair of related bills passed out of two separate legislative committees on Monday, the Senate Judiciary and Assembly Oversight committees, with the aim to implement Question 1, the legalization measure that was approved overwhelmingly last week at the ballot box. 

Wed
11
Nov

Indiana farmers now allowed to grow commercial hemp

Devin Crispin began growing hemp in 2019 in hopes of producing CBD oil.

He said the new plan provided by the government allows farmers to have clearer picture of what to expect before they begin the process like when to harvest and how to test their plants’ THC levels.

“We have a pretty good handle on what the new regulations will be. I think the benefit will be having a firm rule in place so that people can make investments and decide what they’re willing to risk without changes coming down that could affect their businesses.”

Wed
11
Nov

Texas Lawmaker Makes Push For Statewide Cannabis Legalization

On the heels of a historic triumph for the legalization movement at the ballot box earlier this month, one Texas lawmaker is keen to get in on the action.

Roland Gutierrez, a Democratic state House representative who was just elected to the Texas state senate, said this week that he intends to introduce legislation that would legalize both recreational and medical marijuana in the Lone Star State.

Wed
11
Nov

Marijuana Legalization Does Not Lead To More Teens Smoking Pot, Studies Find

According to new studies, the legalization of marijuana doesn’t lead to teens using more weed. And in the case of Colorado, the amount of teen use went slightly down after voters in the state made cannabis legal.

Those findings stand in direct contradiction to a popular argument that legalization would lead to the rampant use of marijuana by underage teens. Even though 15 states have now legalized recreational marijuana, it’s an issue that makes some hesitate to support legalization.

Wed
11
Nov

Was New Zealand's ‘no’ vote on cannabis legalization a result of misinformation?

Dr. Fiona Hutton, an associate professor in the Institute of Criminology at New Zealand’s Victoria University, says the ‘no’ vote on the country’s cannabis referendum is a victory for those who traffic in fear-mongering and misinformation.

Writing in The Guardian, Hutton says she been reduced to tears in the aftermath of the close vote, where 50.7 per cent of voters said ‘no’ to legal weed.

“I have been receiving heartbreaking emails from people thanking me for my work to try and get the evidence out there, to try and stem the tide of fear-mongering and misinformation about cannabis and those who use it,” she writes.

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