No on Prop 64: Just too many risks and unknowns

The Press Democrat
BY THE EDITORIAL BOARD

Give Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom credit. He speaks with passion, particularly on issues of social justice. And, to him, that’s what Proposition 64 is all about.

During a meeting with The Press Democrat Editorial Board Tuesday, Newsom said of the 8,800 arrests for non-violent marijuana felonies last year, a disproportionate number of them involved African-Americans and Latinos: “We are still arresting and incarcerating folks that don’t look like me.”

It’s a compelling argument, one that underscores many of the inequalities of the criminal justice system. But it’s not enough to warrant the acceptance of a poorly worded ballot proposition that opens the door to a number of social problems and unknowns — and potentially puts local growers at a competitive disadvantage in a world where the recreational use of marijuana is legal.

We accept that legalization is probably an inevitability in California. But this is neither the right time nor the right proposition to make that happen. Here are several reasons why.

Read More


The problems with rushing to legalize marijuana for stoner use in California

Los Angeles Times
By George Skelton

Californians seem hot to visit a legal pot shop and smoke a joint or munch a weeded brownie. But driving home could be risky.

No one — not even highway patrolmen — knows precisely how stoned a motorist can be before he’s dangerously under the influence of cannabis.

Unlike with liquor, there’s no 0.08% blood alcohol equivalent for marijuana. There’s not even a common Breathalyzer to measure drugged driving. And there’s nothing around the corner.

Read More


Say no to Prop. 64

The Porterville Recorder
Editorial Board

Proposition 64 on the Nov. 8 ballot would legalize the use of marijuana for recreation purposes. We recommend a no vote.

While California appears heading toward the legalization of marijuana beyond using it for medical purposes, Prop. 64 is wrought with problems that could greatly burden law enforcement and possibly create more issues than the laws we have today against the use and possession of marijuana.

Read More


Money and marijuana: Donors with ties to industry give to legalize pot

The Sacramento Bee
by Christopher Cadelago and Jim Miller

Justin Hartfield, former chief executive of a company called Weedmaps, two years ago discussed his plans to legalize marijuana nationwide and make his company the Philip Morris of pot.

“Prohibition is about to pop,” he predicted in The Wall Street Journal. “And the people that were here before, if they’re positioned intelligently, will reap a profit. I think we’re positioned really well.”

Proposition 64’s passage would create a burgeoning new economy in California, from growing operations to delivery services, and those who stand to profit are pitching in to ensure it succeeds. Weedmaps, which helps connect cannabis users with dispensaries, delivery services and doctors, has given $1 million to the fall effort to legalize marijuana in California.

Read More


LG Newsom reveals his wife is “scared as hell” about non-medical marijuana legalization

The Los Angeles Times and Sacramento Bee reported that at the Cannabis Business Summit and Expo yesterday Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, a 2018 Democratic candidate for Governor, revealed that his wife is “scared as hell” about his ballot measure to commercialize non-medical marijuana.

Jennifer Siebel Newsom is concerned for good reason. Californians know from the experience with Washington state’s law that DUI deaths related to people driving under the influence of marijuana has doubled according to a report recently published by the AAA Foundation for Highway Safety.

Read More


California Marijuana Legalization Draws Lawmaker Opposition

Sacramento Bee
by Jeremy B. White

  • Two Democrats among opponents
  • Legalization likely going before voters in November
  • Other critics include police chiefs, hospitals, Sacramento DA

Two Democratic state lawmakers with deep law enforcement ties announced their opposition on Tuesday to legalizing recreational marijuana use.

Assemblyman Jim Cooper, D-Elk Grove, a former Sacramento County sheriff’s official who regularly warns about the consequences of drug use, and Sen. Cathleen Galgiani, D-Stockton, the Democratic senator most aligned with law enforcement, warned in a statement about impaired drivers and exposing children to marijuana.

Joining Cooper and Galgiani in opposition were Sen. Jim Nielsen, R-Gerber, and Sacramento County District Attorney Anne-Marie Schubert.

“This initiative will endanger the most vulnerable members of our community,” Schubert said in a statement.

Read More


Is Marijuana the Next Big Tobacco

East Bay Times
by Margaret Lavin

California was the first state to legalize marijuana for medical use in 1996. In 2010, Proposition 19 would have made California the first state to legalize nonmedical marijuana, but voters defeated the measure by a 53.5-46.5 margin. However, lawmakers will try again. There are two major initiatives that have a very good chance of qualifying for the November ballot due to their financial backing and political support.

Researchers at UC San Francisco (UCSF) recently released a new report that evaluates the retail marijuana legalization proposals in California from a public health standard. According to the study, recreational marijuana will likely lead to a new profit-driven industry similar to Big Tobacco that could impede public health efforts.

Researchers said they began their study with the premise that legalizing marijuana makes sense because its prohibition has caused excessive incarcerations and cost taxpayers too much money. However, they concluded that legalized recreational marijuana would replace a crime problem with a public health issue.

Read More


Researchers Warn Legal Marijuana Could be Next Big Tobacco

Sacramento Bee
by Christopher Cadelago

  • Report from UCSF institute warns about health risks, industry power
  • Researchers wanted measures modeled after Tobacco Control Program
  • Backers of main initiative say report is flawed and measure has safeguards

A ballot proposal legalizing recreational marijuana would likely launch a new profit-driven industry similar to Big Tobacco that could impede public health efforts, according to researchers at the University of California, San Francisco.

The 66-page analysis, released Tuesday, is the first in-depth look at the state’s main effort to legalize recreational marijuana this year.

Researchers said they began with the premise that legalizing marijuana makes sense because its prohibition has put too many people behind bars and cost taxpayers too much money. But they concluded the two potential initiatives they examined would replace a crime problem with a public health issue.

The authors, Rachel Barry and Stanton Glantz, of the UCSF Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education and Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy, said the measure most likely to qualify for the ballot establishes a regulatory system similar to the one used for alcohol. They said it would have been better to pattern the guidelines after the state’s Tobacco Control Program, which they credited with reducing the health effects and costs related to tobacco.

Read More