Archive for the ‘washington state’ category

WA Delegation To Feds: Clarity On Marijuana Legalization

June 20th, 2013

yes-we-cannabisNearly eight months after Washington voters passed a binding cannabis legalization initiative with an impressive 55% showing, the federal government is still yet to have made any definitive public statements as to what it is going to do regarding what is now such a clear conflict: between established federal laws and customs prohibiting any use, cultivation or sale of cannabis, for whatever reason–personal, medical and banning domestically-cultivated industrial hemp–and states whose citizens are leading the way at apparently dismantling a certainly failed 75-year-old federal prohibition against cannabis.

Frustrated by a lack of federal response and political leaderships seven members of the Washington’s congressional delegation have written a letter to the Obama Administration (specifically Attorney General Holder, who told Congress in public testimony months ago that the administration would have public statements “soon”)  seeking guidance and clarity.

The members of the Senate and Congress who’ve signed the letter are both Senators Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray, as well as Representatives Adam Smith, Jim McDermott, Suzan DelBene, Denny Heck and Derek Kilmer.

Apparent opponents of reform, Representatives Rick Larsen, Dave Reichert, Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Doc Hastings did not sign onto the letter.

In other news regarding Washington moving forward with their cannabis legalization efforts as directed by the voters, the soon to be renamed ‘WA Liquor and Cannabis Control Board’, held public hearing yesterday that can be viewed and watched here:

WA Liquor Control Board

WA Liquor Control Board YouTube channel

 

 

 

 

Threatened species latest collateral victim of marijuana prohibition

July 19th, 2012

Meet the fisher:

This is what a fisher looks like

Cute, huh?

Fishers are native forest carnivores that populate, among other areas, parts of California, Oregon, and Washington State. Unfortunately, the fisher has been listed as a candidate species for the endangered species program. Even more unfortunate is the fact that our country’s marijuana prohibition is killing these little guys off in new and unforeseen ways.

According to researchers led by veterinary scientists from the University of California at Davis, illicit marijuana grows are inadvertently killing off large numbers of these rare animals. The theory goes that in order to protect their irrigation lines and crops from nibbling rats, growers sprinkle rodenticide directly on their lines and around their crops. The rodenticide – which can be lethal after a single ingestion – takes up to seven days before signs of ingestion occur. Within those seven days, the fishers eat the rats who have been poisoned, thus exposing themselves to the poison as well.

Researchers also theorize that the fishers may be eating the poison directly, attracted to the cheese, peanut butter, and bacon flavorizers added to the poison. Of the 58 fisher carcasses analyzed by the researchers, rodenticide was found in 79% of them. In addition, the deaths occurred between mid-April to mid-May, when immature marijuana plants would be most vulnerable to pests and thus most in need of a rodenticide to ensure against that threat. While the fisher is the focus of the study, the researchers made sure to point out that “martens, spotted owls, and Sierra Nevada red foxes may be at risk from the poison, as well.”

Consider for a moment one consequence of the marijuana prohibition and how it makes life difficult, or impossible, for the fisher. It is painfully clear that Americans like to use marijuana recreationally, and where there is demand, there is supply. Currently, most marijuana grows are illicit, and thus growers seek the deepest and darkest recesses of our natural habitat, frequently growing on public lands and in our state parks. Unregulated growers have no incentive to protect against the environmental damage that an agricultural operation causes, such as secondary deaths of protected animals due to rodenticides.

Now it’s time to consider the effect of a legal marijuana agricultural operation on the wildlife around it. Like other agricultural operations, marijuana grows would be regulated and, more importantly, inspected. Environmental regulations would limit when and what types of pesticides could be used. Additionally, grows would be moved out of the remote areas where they are currently cultivated and where wildlife thrives; we don’t see illicit vineyards crop up on remote public lands for a reason. Finally, financial penalties would be placed on growers who violate environmental regulations and inspections would make sure the regulations are being followed. A well-regulated and inspected system of marijuana cultivation would ensure that the industry is environmentally friendly (or at least not environmentally destructive).

It’s well past time we stop criminalizing otherwise law abiding marijuana users, stop wasting billions in tax payer money funding a prohibition that has never worked, stop foregoing billions of estimated tax revenue, and stop fostering a niche agricultural industry free from any environmental rules and regulations. It’s well past time we tax and regulate the marijuana industry.

Cop Takes Home Seized Marijuana; Claims His Dog Ate It

June 13th, 2012
Serious Lawyers"The dog ate it." Really? Really?? A police department in Washington state is under fire after an officer took home seized marijuana, only to report his dog ate the weed.The Soap L

Cop Takes Home Seized Marijuana; Claims His Dog Ate It

June 13th, 2012
Serious Lawyers"The dog ate it." Really? Really?? A police department in Washington state is under fire after an officer took home seized marijuana, only to report his dog ate the weed.The Soap L

Washington Town To Ban Safe Access to Medical Cannabis

June 2nd, 2012
Steve Hunter/Kent ReporterA woman opposes the Kent City Council's proposed ban on medical marijuana dispensaries and collective gardens prior to a May 14 Council committee meeting. The full council vo

Local Group Sponsors Marijuana March In Washington State

June 1st, 2012
Sensible WashingtonSensible Kitsap, a local group of volunteer cannabis activists, is hosting a march in downtown Bremerton, Washington, on Saturday, June 9 at 12 noon. The march is in support of Sens

An Open Letter To I-502 Supporters: The Perfect vs. The Good

May 31st, 2012
The Weed BlogBy Bryan PunyonSpecial to Toke of the TownTo all of my friends and associates who support I-502,Hi there. You may know me as a Hempfest activist, you may simply know me as a guy on Facebo

Thoughts On Washington’s I-502: With Friends Like These…

May 14th, 2012
Naked Science ForumBy Mickey MartinCannabis WarriorSo there is a lot of drama in Washington State right now about I-502, an initiative that will go before the voters in November to legalize up to an o

I-502: An Open Letter To Marc Emery, From A Supporter

April 30th, 2012
Cydney MooreCydney Moore: "[W]e cannot in good conscience support something that will further criminalize our citizens"By Cydney MooreCannabis Activist, Washington StateDear Mr. Emery,I would lik

Lowest Priority Cannabis Enforcement: Signature Gathering Begins In WA

April 13th, 2012
Recently the cannabis advocacy group Sensible Washington announced it was filing initiatives making marijuana the lowest law enforcement priority in six cities throughout Washington State. Now signature gathering drive has begun in three of those cities: Olympia, Everett and Bremerton."It is our goal to get these quickly on the ballot, as to effectively run a successful campaign to pass these initiatives into law," said Anthony Martinelli of Sensible Washington.If put on the ballot and passed, these initiatives, all titled the Marijuana Reform Act of 2012, will make cannabis the lowest law-enforcement priority, and also prohibit city and local law enforcement from cooperating with federal authorities over the implementation of federal cannabis policies. Continue reading "Lowest Priority Cannabis Enforcement: Signature Gathering Begins In WA" >