Medical Marijuana, Research

Medical Marijuana Laws Do Not Affect Teen Use

June 30th, 2011 15 Comments Morgan Fox

Today, the Marijuana Policy Project released an updated version of the Teen Use Report, which analyzes all available data from medical marijuana states both before and after passing their medical marijuana laws. The purpose behind this was to find out if permitting patients to use their medicine “sends the wrong message” to teens, as prohibitionists are so quick to claim.

Well, it turns out that it doesn’t. In fact, of the 13 states with available data, teen use rates have stayed the same or decreased since enacting medical marijuana laws. In some cases, these drops in teen use are pretty significant. This is not meant to imply that there is a causal relationship between medical marijuana and a drop in teen use. What the report does show, however, is that there is definitely no causal relationship between medical marijuana and an increase in teen marijuana use.

Not surprisingly, we’ve seen that arresting anyone for marijuana, even teenagers, does nothing to curb adolescent marijuana use. Some parents may be asking right about now, “how do I prevent my teenager from using marijuana?”

According to a study released this week by the University of Washington, the answer is … talk to them!





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MPP Executive Director Rob Kampia to Speak at FreedomFest 2011

June 29th, 2011 3 Comments Kate Zawidzki

Topic: Is marijuana policy the only issue heading in a libertarian direction?

July 14-16, 2011

Bally’s/Paris, Las Vegas

FreedomFest: Register Now

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History on the Hill: Barney Frank, Ron Paul Propose Legislation That Would End Federal Marijuana Prohibition

June 23rd, 2011 36 Comments Kate Zawidzki

Today, a handful of visionary and courageous Members of Congress, led by Rep. Barney Frank, introduced the “Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2011,” a bill that would treat marijuana the way alcohol is treated under federal law. It would give each state complete freedom to regulate marijuana in the manner it believes is in the best interests of its citizens. If a state wants to make marijuana available to patients, it can. And if it prefers to make marijuana legal for all adults, it can do that, too.

“The legislation would limit the federal government’s role in marijuana enforcement to cross-border or inter-state smuggling, allowing people to legally grow, use or sell marijuana in states where it is legal,” according to the Marijuana Policy Project, which advocates for pot legalization. “The legislation is the first bill ever introduced in Congress to end federal marijuana prohibition.”

More than a dozen states allow the sale of medical marijuana, but the practice is not legal under federal law, leading to confusion and clashes between local and federal authorities. via Huffington Post

Hundreds of billions of dollars have been wasted on marijuana prohibition over the past forty years. And for what? Usage rates don’t change. The price of marijuana doesn’t change. All prohibition has done is ensure that profits have remained underground while marijuana itself has been unregulated and less safe.

It is time to tell your representative in Congress to put an end to this massive waste of government resources. States must be set free to experiment with marijuana policy.

MPP has produced a number of pre-written emails to convey this message to your U.S. representative. Please take two minutes to send one along so that your representative knows how important this issue is to you.

With your help, we will bring this war on marijuana users to an end!


Rob Kampia: Barney Frank and Ron Paul Introduce bill to End Federal Marijuana Prohibition

Rep. Steve Cohen on Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition

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Rep. Steve Cohen on Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition

June 23rd, 2011 3 Comments Kate Zawidzki

Congressman Steve Cohen spoke on the House floor about legislation he is cosponsoring that would end the federal war on marijuana and let states legalize, regulate, tax and control marijuana without federal interference. The legislation would limit the federal government’s role in marijuana enforcement to cross-border or interstate smuggling.

Source: Youtube

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Medical Marijuana

Tell Attorney General Eric Holder to Leave Medical Marijuana Up to States

June 21st, 2011 6 Comments Morgan Fox

In 2009, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Department of Justice would no longer spend scarce resources going after medical marijuana patients or providers. The “Ogden memo” clearly established that federal enforcement actions would not be taken against individuals or groups that act in clear and unambiguous compliance with state laws regarding medical marijuana. For the most part, the DOJ has followed this policy.

Now, after a series of letters to various state officials from U.S. Attorneys throughout the country that has led to confusion about what the Department of Justice will allow in terms of medical marijuana providers and cultivators, Holder will supposedly clarify where the federal government stands on state marijuana laws. This has many reformers worried that the Department of Justice will remove any protections that marijuana providers have had up to this point. This would force many patients back into the criminal market, as well as destroy the well-regulated medical marijuana industry in places like Colorado, Maine, and New Mexico, and prevent other states from enacting sensible dispensary regulation.

MPP has been working with Representatives Barney Frank and Jared Polis to put pressure on the DOJ to reaffirm the “Ogden memo” and let states regulate their medical marijuana programs as they see fit, free from federal interference. Yesterday, they sent this letter to Holder asking the same thing.

We need you to tell him, too.

Please sign this petition asking the Attorney General to respect state regulations of medical marijuana providers.

You can also call the Office of the Attorney General at (202)353-1555.


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Prohibition, Video

Rep. John Conyers Says Marijuana Should Be Decriminalized

June 20th, 2011 9 Comments Morgan Fox

At a press conference at the National Press Club on Friday, representatives of Institute of the Black World, as well as Rev. Jesse Jackson, Ethan Nadelmann of the Drug Policy Alliance, and others met to look at the impact that our nation’s failed war on drugs has had on minorities. One of the ideas mentioned most frequently to eliminate some of the negative effects of the drug war was to remove criminal penalties for possession of small amounts of marijuana.

While this is not a very radical statement, and does not address the problems associated with maintaining criminalization of the marijuana market, it is definitely a step in the right direction. It was little surprising coming from Rep. John Conyers (D-Michigan), who said he had never made such a statement before:

Good for you, Rep. Conyers! Now we just need the rest of Congress to come around.

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Medical Marijuana, Tax and Regulate

Miss USA Supports Medical Marijuana

June 20th, 2011 6 Comments Morgan Fox

In yet another illustration of how the marijuana debate has gone completely mainstream, the freshly-crowned winner of the Miss USA pageant, Alyssa Campanella, stated that she supported the use of marijuana for medical purposes. As the California representative at the pageant, the judges thought it appropriate to ask the young lady about her opinions on marijuana. She had this to say:

“Well, I understand why that question would be asked, especially with today’s economy, but I also understand that medical marijuana is very important to help those who need it medically,” she said during the pageant.

“I’m not sure if it should be legalized, if it would really affect, with the drug war,” she said. “I mean, it’s abused today, unfortunately, so that’s the only reason why I would kind of be a little bit against it, but medically it’s OK.”

Well, it’s great that a Miss USA contestant feels comfortable supporting people finding relief from this proven, if unaccountably still controversial, medicine. It seems to me, however, that her position regarding ending marijuana prohibition altogether was a little less assertive. I’m willing to wager that she felt she had to say she was against taxing and regulating marijuana for all adults to please the judges, even if it was just “a little bit against it.”

What is even more significant is that this question has become so prominent in the public arena that it is being asked at such a traditionally tame event as the Miss USA contest.

AP Photo/Julie Jacobson

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President Jimmy Carter Calls for End to War On Drugs

June 17th, 2011 26 Comments Morgan Fox

The failure of marijuana prohibition and its inherent hypocrisy are certainly becoming clearer than ever these days, and the discussion is starting to include some pretty big names. The report released by the Global Commission on Drug Policy two weeks ago is evidence of that, and the discussion is spreading to others.

The last three U.S. presidents have admitted to using marijuana, and it did not stop them from going on to lead successful lives. This is largely attributable to the fact that they were not arrested for it, but they have still owned up to it publicly. Now, a former president is standing up and declaring that the drug war must end.

Yesterday, Jimmy Carter, former president and life-long humanitarian, wrote in the New York Times that the time to end the war on drugs had come. He suggested following the advice of the Global Commission, a major facet of which was the need to end marijuana prohibition.

Let’s hope that some leaders who are still unconvinced listen to him. If not, the rest of us are prepared to keep shouting about the necessity of marijuana reform until they do.

Image: CBS News

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Rob Kampia, Reform Leaders to Speak at The Marijuana Conference

June 14th, 2011 2 Comments Morgan Fox

DealFlow Media is hosting The Marijuana Conference in San Francisco on June 16 and 17. This is the only non-biased event covering the business, legal, and health issues surrounding the growing debate over marijuana in the United States. MPP’s own Rob Kampia will be speaking on the opening panel discussing efforts to make marijuana legal in 2012.

For more information on the conference or to register, please visit:

The agenda for this two-day event covers everything from the legal and regulatory concerns, the economics of a small business or dispensary, tax implications, ancillary business opportunities, legislative updates, health issues, the structure of investments, and how federal and state laws impact businesses structuring start-up capital.

Some other guests include:

  • Robert Raich, Esq.
  • Dale Sky Jones, Coalition for Cannabis Policy Reform & Oaksterdam University
  • Stephen DeAngelo, Harborside Health Center
  • Ed Rosenthal, Quick Trading Company
  • Assemblymember Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco)
  • Angel McClary Raich, ARCH Collective
  • Dr. Robert Martin, CW Analytical Laboratories
  • Cheryl Brown, Medical Marijuana Business Alliance & CSSB Private Bank
  • Henry Wykowski, Henry G. Wykowski & Associates
  • Al Coles, CBD Science
  • Nick Brusatore, Terrasphere LLC  & British Columbia Institute of Technology’s Centre for Applied Research and Innovation Advisory Committee
  • Annarae Grabstein, Steep Hill Lab
  • Justin Hartfield, WeedMaps Media Inc. & General Cannabis Inc.
  • Debby Goldsberry, United Cannabis Collective
  • John Geluardi, Author: Cannabiz: The Explosive Rise of the Medical Marijuana Industry
  • Ralph Morgan, Organa Labs
  • Troy Dayton, The ArcView Group
  • Steph Sherer, Americans for Safe Access
  • Derek Peterson, GrowOp Technology


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Does Justin Timberlake Use Marijuana? “Absolutely.”

June 14th, 2011 12 Comments Morgan Fox

One of America’s most well-liked entertainers just publicly admitted that he uses marijuana. That’s right, Justin Timberlake, boy band ingénue, actor, and all around nice guy, told Playboy that he uses marijuana to, well, relax. How refreshing to see someone dealing with the pressures of fame by using something safer than alcohol, instead of jumping on the crazy train.

From US Weekly:

“The only thing pot does for me is it gets me to stop thinking,” the Bad Teacher and Friends with Benefits star explains. “Sometimes I have a brain that needs to be turned off. Some people are just better high.”

Whatever his reasons, it’s good that someone with such a high profile feels comfortable sharing his experience with marijuana in public. No one should ever have to be afraid to disclose their marijuana use, and they certainly shouldn’t ever go to jail for it. Hopefully such statements by universally admired celebrities will help people feel safer starting that conversation.

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Read more: World Leaders, Senate Report Say U.S. Drug War is a Failure

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