Cannabis Crunch — Majority of Republicans Support Pot and Sessions Can’t Comment on Crackdown

(Photo: Pixabay)

Every week, Psychedelic Times will bring you a few of the most interesting, overlooked cannabis stories that we come across. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to keep in the loop on marijuana and psychedelic news.

All-Time High: Majority Of Republicans Support Pot Legalization For First Time — NPR

Cannabis enthusiasm is on the rise, even among more conservative circles. Nationwide, support for marijuana legalization sits at 64 percent, an all-time record, and among Republicans that number is 51 percent, up from 42 percent last year. This is, of course, record breaking support—yet the Trump Administration is wringing their hands, threatening to go after states that are progressive about their citizens’ wishes.

Jeff Sessions ‘Can’t Comment’ On Marijuana Crackdown Plans — Forbes

Yeah, don’t forget that the nation’s Attorney General still hasn’t warmed up to the idea of states’ rights, i.e. pro-cannabis laws.

“I do not believe there is any argument that because a state legalizes marijuana that the federal law against marijuana is no longer [in] existence,” Sessions said in a recent interview. “I do believe that the federal laws clearly are in effect in all 50 states, and we will do our best to enforce the laws as we are required to do so.”

Meanwhile, Sessions is still touting the ‘gateway drug’ myth and blaming the opioid crisis on weed, even though a ton of science suggests marijuana is making the epidemic better, not worse.

Weed to Go! Arizona Opening Marijuana Drive-Thru Window — Fortune

Arizona doesn’t have the most progressive weed laws—after all, it was the only state whose recreational cannabis law failed during the last election—but it doesn’t have the worst laws, either. The Grand Canyon State has had a fairly decent (if not expensive) medical marijuana program since 2010 and now, All Greens Dispensary in Sun City will use a drive-thru window. This will be helpful for the cannabis business’s disabled and elderly patients, who are quite plentiful in Sun City.

Pot ban: County’s Vote to Reject Commercial Marijuana ‘Just the Beginning’ — Bakersfield

Sometimes it doesn’t matter how progressive your state is on marijuana issues — in California, many counties are preemptively banning recreational pot sales, even though Proposition 64 legalized cannabis last year. Four of the five county supervisors in Kern County said they didn’t want to allow a drug that “harms communities,” yet it’s doubtful these officials have any problem with local liquor stores.

Citizens can band together and fight this referendum: they just need 10,600 signatures to do it, which is what happened in 2011 when supervisors tried to ban medical marijuana dispensaries. So at least there’s that.

(Photo: Esteban Lopez)

‘No Significant Issues’ With Legalization, Says Colorado Health Official — CBC Radio

This week, Dr. Larry Wolk, Chief Medical Officer for the Colorado Department of Public Health, was interviewed by CBC radio host Matt Rainnie. Despite some of the anti-weed propaganda coming out which uses states like Colorado as a poster child for what not to do, Dr. Wolk reported no significant issues with legalization.

This section says it all:

Rainnie: What was your concern heading into recreational cannabis legalization?

Wolk: I think the concern was that by legalizing marijuana, we should certainly see an increase in adult use, and maybe that would leak into our youth. [There was also a concern that] youth would somehow gain greater access, and/or feel entitled to go ahead and use in greater numbers.

We just haven’t seen that pan out. We have seen a little bit more calls to the poison control center, but maybe parents of children are a little bit more forthcoming—now that it’s legalized—to make those calls.

More people are going to the emergency room for marijuana visits, but most of those people are actually from out-of-state. They are tourists coming to ski, or coming to take advantage of all that Colorado has to offer. I say ‘all’ now because we have certainly seen an increase in tourists who partake and end up in the emergency room, or end up hospitalized, because they’re not as familiar with the products or education programs that we have around the state, which warn people and educate people about those products.

Got a tip on an interesting or overlooked cannabis story? Send it to troy.farah@gmail.com

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Troy Farah
Troy Farah is a documentary field producer and independent journalist from the Southwest. His reporting has appeared in The Outline, VICE, Fusion, LA Weekly, AJ+, NBC and others. His website is troyfarah.com