Study: 97% of Patients Say Cannabis Decreases Opioid Use

Study: 97% of Patients Say Cannabis Decreases Opioid Use

A new study conducted by researchers at the University of California, Berkley, and Kent State Universityhave found that cannabis is strongly preferred over prescription opioids, and cannabis can help reduce the use of such opioids.

“Prescription drug overdoses are the leading cause of accidental death in the United States”, states the study’s introduction section. “Alternatives to opioids for the treatment of pain are necessary to address this issue. Cannabis can be an effective treatment for pain, greatly reduces the chance of dependence, and eliminates the risk of fatal overdose compared to opioid-based medications. Medical cannabis patients report that cannabis is just as effective, if not more, than opioid-based medications for pain.”

The current study “examined the use of cannabis as a substitute for opioid-based pain medication by collecting survey data from 2897 medical cannabis patients.”

34% of the sample reported using opioid-based pain medication in the past 6 months. Respondents “overwhelmingly reported that cannabis provided relief on par with their other medications, but without the unwanted side effects.” 97% of the sample “strongly agreed/agreed” that they are able to decrease the amount of opiates they consume when they also use cannabis, and 81% “strongly agreed/agreed” that taking cannabis by itself was more effective at treating their condition than taking cannabis with opioids. Results were “similar for those using cannabis with nonopioid-based pain medications.”

The study concludes by stating that; “Future research should track clinical outcomes where cannabis is offered as a viable substitute for pain treatment and examine the outcomes of using cannabis as a medication assisted treatment for opioid dependence.”

The full abstract and text of the study can be found by clicking here.

About Anthony Martinelli

Anthony, co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of TheJointBlog, has worked closely with numerous elected officials who support cannabis law reform, including as the former Campaign Manager for Washington State Representative Dave Upthegrove. He has also been published by multiple media outlets, including the Seattle Times. He can be reached at TheJointBlog@TheJointBlog.com.

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Published at Fri, 30 Jun 2017 21:36:39 +0000

Denver finalizes first-in-nation marijuana social use rules, dropping some restrictions

Denver finalizes first-in-nation marijuana social use rules, dropping some restrictions

Denver’s plan to allow people to use marijuana at some businesses drew a step closer to reality Friday, when the city’s top licensing official unveiled final rules for the pilot program that is set to launch in coming months.

Big questions remain: Will the newly adopted regulations for the first-in-the-nation “social use” program provide measured protection for patrons and neighbors of businesses that take part, as city officials say? Or are the rules for consumption areas so restrictive that few businesses and event organizers will want to bother?

The exuberance that greeted the Nov. 8 passage of Initiative 300 — in which 54 percent of city voters directed officials to create a four-year pilot of the social marijuana consumption program — is now tempered among its chief supporters. Their protest of several draft rules released on May 11 resulted in only a couple changes by city officials, including the nixing of a proposed requirement that patrons sign waivers upon entry to a business’ consumption area.

“I still have questions that I need answered. We still have concerns about many of the rules,” said I-300 campaign leader Emmett Reistroffer, from Denver Relief Consulting. “However, I recognize some improvements and I’m hopeful that there still are opportunities for businesses and nonprofits to allow cannabis consumption.”

The city will begin accepting applications by the end of August to permit social consumption areas on an annual basis or for events.

As required by the ballot measure, applicants must obtain backing from a registered neighborhood organization, a business improvement district’s board or other area group. That gives those groups the power to set operating conditions for the set-off, 21-and-over areas indoors or outdoors where customers could consume their own cannabis; indoor areas would have to follow the state’s smoking ban.

Yoga studios, coffee shops could take part

Interested businesses so far have included yoga studios, coffee shops with back-door patios, and bars or restaurants — though liquor license-holders must be willing to meet strict alcohol exclusion rules for regular or one-off events, since state liquor licensing rules bar the mixture of alcohol and marijuana.

Businesses that grow or sell marijuana in Denver won’t be eligible to apply for consumption area permits. Fees for successful permit applications will total $2,000.

Officials say they need to update licensing systems to process the applications, so that likely will push back the acceptance of requests from an original late-July target. Reistroffer called that delay a big disappointment because backers were hoping for summer events to be among the first to take advantage of the program.

“We have had a very aggressive timeline, and we’re right on time” in finalizing the rules, said Ashley Kilroy, executive director of the Department of Excise and Licenses, adding: “Building any structure from the ground up takes time.”

Owner Jim Norris works behind the coffee counter at Mutiny Information Cafe on December 2, 2016, in Denver, Colorado. Along with co-owner Matt Megyesi, Norris intends to apply for a social marijuana use permit once the city's Department of Excise and Licenses works out the particulars of how to implement Initiative 300.
Owner Jim Norris works behind the coffee counter at Mutiny Information Cafe on December 2, 2016, in Denver, Colorado. Along with co-owner Matt Megyesi, Norris intends to apply for a social marijuana use permit once the city’s Department of Excise and Licenses works out the particulars of how to implement Initiative 300. (Denver Post file)

An advisory committee including both supporters and opponents of I-300 helped shape the regulations. The committee found broad consensus on some issues but disagreed on a handful of the most contentious.

“We are grateful that many of our concerns were heard,” said Rachel O’Bryan, who managed the anti-Initiative 300 campaign and took part in the committee, in a statement. “These final rules released by Denver Excise & Licenses fairly balance the desires of marijuana consumers and potential social consumption permit-seekers with the needs of all Denver citizens and visitors alike.”

But she cited worries about the message that would be sent to children who saw the consumption areas in businesses and about patrons’ use of edibles. “Denver citizens and visitors should be vigilant around the increased risks of marijuana-impaired driving,” O’Bryan said.

Initiative 300 provided some restrictions for businesses, and the city’s new regulations flesh those out while adding detailed rules, often drawing from the city’s prior regulations of the marijuana and liquor industries. They focus on operating restrictions and location restrictions — purely residential zoning districts, public property, and properties within 1,000 feet of places such as schools and child-care centers are off-limits — and provide numerous permit conditions, including public hearings for business applications.

What changed between the draft and final rules?

Kilroy did bow to the initiative backers’ concerns on some issues.

The licensing department won’t require patrons to sign waivers as they enter a consumption area. Instead, the businesses must post a visible notice advising patrons they are responsible for their own actions, must consume marijuana responsibly, should not drive impaired and cannot share marijuana in exchange for money.

The other major change drops a requirement for a business to create and follow a ventilation plan if it allows the use of vaping devices indoors. Kilroy said that ultimately was deemed unnecessary since city requirements currently provide adequate ventilation and applicants already need an odor-control plan.

I-300 supporters argued the change would cut down on public pot-smoking by providing places to use marijuana for tourists and for some residents who can’t smoke or vape at home, as well as people who want to do it socially.

Among I-300 backers’ most pressing concerns about the new rules, Reistroffer said, are proximity and location restrictions that might keep too many businesses from applying, advertising rules that bar promotion by permitted businesses and a prohibition of events that allow marijuana on public property.

“The city is largely overlooking what’s going on at Red Rocks,” he said, calling that a prime opportunity for occasional events with designated marijuana-consumption areas, since pot use frequently occurs unsanctioned among concert-goers. “I think they should work with us to create designated consumption areas. I think the people want that and think it makes sense.”

He said the city’s rules could persuade those interested in permits to revert to hosting private, invite-only events if that would be easier.

The new rules may not be the final word. State legislators could tweak laws on the public consumption issue — a similar effort failed in the recent session — and I-300 requires the Denver City Council to oversee an evaluation of the program before it expires at the end of 2020.

The council also could make changes to the voter-passed ordinance with a two-thirds majority. If the new regulations prove unworkable, Reistroffer said, I-300’s supporters could appeal to the council for help.

But in the meantime, he says, the campaign committee also recognizes what its members see as a big step forward.

By the fall, Reistroffer said, he hopes to pin down a venue, line up the required community support and host one of the first cannabis-friendly events under the program for I-300 campaign supporters.

Social Consumption Rules FINAL 6 29 17 (Text)

This story was first published on DenverPost.com

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Published at Fri, 30 Jun 2017 16:19:54 +0000

6 Ways SB94 Will Change The Medical Cannabis Industry In California

6 Ways SB94 Will Change The Medical Cannabis Industry In California

6 Ways SB94 Will Change The Medical Cannabis Industry In California

sb94

Last week, California’s lawmakers signed on a state budget with additional legislations that will officially mark this year as the first for the Golden State to be recognized as a fully regulated cannabis business sector. Known as the SB94, or the Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA) which is a joint law combining Prop64 and the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act, will have its own set of guidelines overseeing recreational and medical cannabis use in California.

While the bill and budget are waiting for the governor’s signature, will clear up much of the smoke surrounding how both recreational and medical cannabis markets will work in a state through an established framework. SB94, despite the fact that the final regulations are still being written, will transform California’s cannabis industry and here are 6 things you need to know about it:

  1. The Bureau of Cannabis Control will govern the entire industry. The CBC is in charge of everything to do with licensing including the issuance, denial, renewal disciplining, revoking, and suspending licenses for distribution, storage, sale, and testing of cannabis as well as any cannabis products. SB94 will turn over regulation of industrial hemp fiber, used in clothing and building material as well as rope, to the Department of Food and Agriculture.


  2. Allows dispensaries to sell both recreational and medical cannabis products. Retailers will need to get a separate license to sell both recreational and medical cannabis products to users although testing for both categories will only need one testing lab license, which will be governed by the Bureau of Cannabis Control. 

  3. SB94 will repeal some of the residency requirements of Prop 64. This means that residents of other countries, as well as those who live out of state, can participate in California’s newly regulated medical and recreational cannabis market. However the new residency requirements won’t apply for certain cities in the Bay Area like Oakland, which has rescinded its own requirements due to resistance from business owners. In Oakland, those who wish to participate in the cannabis industry will need to have lived in the city for a minimum of 3 years.

  4. The new legislation will determine which taxes will be needed, and how they will be calculated. All cannabis products are subject to two taxes as dictated by Prop64. This includes a $9.35 cultivation tax per 1 ounce of flower for growers, which will be collected during harvest. It also includes a 15% excise tax that will be determined based on the average market price instead of the gross receipts of sales. Revenue from taxes will be used to pay for regulating the industry, while some of it will also be allocated to school grants, substance abuse programs, behavioral health programs, and developing youth treatment facilities as well as other types of social services to benefit the community.

  5. New cannabis advertising standards and cannabis categories will be created. The Department of Food and Agriculture will make have an organic designation come 2021. It will also imitate the food industry, particularly the cheese and wine business, when it comes to how they market their products based on origin regions and varieties. When it comes to marketing, this will have to be determined if at least 71.6% of the targeted audience is 21 years or older; only then can businesses market to mass media. SB94 will also require that edibles will need to be marked with a universal symbol.

  6. Law enforcement will develop legal guidelines for consumption. With SB94 there were many concerns about how law enforcers would oversee consumption, and it was done by limiting legal consumption of the product only in designated private areas. The new legislation will also include penalties for open containers if recreational consumers are caught, while allocating $3 million so that the California Highway Patrol will be trained with the help of drug recognition experts for enforcing what exactly “driving under the influence” laws will translate to.

California’s government officials are given the deadline of 2019 to work with the $118 million budget to put these regulatory infrastructures and changes in place to the state’s legal cannabis industry. Once these changes are in place, adult-use cannabis is expected to be monitored in the same way the retail alcohol industry is. State tax revenues from sales of the plant are expected to reach as much as $1 billion annually once this market has been established, while the overall annual revenue for the state industry is foreseen between $5 to $7 million.

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Published at Thu, 29 Jun 2017 05:00:00 +0000

United Nations’s World Health Organization Calls for Worldwide Decriminalization of Drug Use and Possession

United Nations’s World Health Organization Calls for Worldwide Decriminalization of Drug Use and Possession

In a public statement the United Nations’ World Health Organization (WHO) has called for the worldwide decriminalization of drug possession and use.

“United Nations entities recall that a central principle of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is to “ensure that no one is left behind” and to “reach the furthest behind first””, states the Joint United Nations statement on ending discrimination in health care settings. “Recognizing that discrimination in health care settings is a major barrier to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), United Nations entities commit to working together to support Member States in taking coordinated multisectoral action to eliminate discrimination in health care settings.”

With this in mind, the WHO is calling for “Reviewing and repealing punitive laws that have been proven to have negative health outcomes and that counter established public health evidence”, including “drug use or possession of drugs for personal use”.

The call for worldwide drug decriminalization comes roughly seven months after the Global Commission on Drug Policyannounced their support for the same approach.

In Portugal, personal drug possession has been decriminalized for roughly 16 years, and the results have been a resounding success. According to a report by the Cato Institute, drug usage rates have declined, as have addiction rates, overdose deaths and STDs.

About Anthony Martinelli

Anthony, co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of TheJointBlog, has worked closely with numerous elected officials who support cannabis law reform, including as the former Campaign Manager for Washington State Representative Dave Upthegrove. He has also been published by multiple media outlets, including the Seattle Times. He can be reached at TheJointBlog@TheJointBlog.com.

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Published at Wed, 28 Jun 2017 17:37:35 +0000

New Jersey Legalization Proposal Should Include Social Justice Revisions

New Jersey Legalization Proposal Should Include Social Justice Revisions

There was a hearing yesterday in the New Jersey State Legislature for SB (Senate Bill) 3195, which would legalize small amounts of marijuana for adults 21 and older.  This Bill is sponsored by Senator Nicholas Scutari (D-Union). While we are generally supportive of bills such as this, and have reported on New Jersey cannabis policy before, we feel there are a few pitfalls with this one.

Additionally, The Drug Policy Alliance and other civil rights and racial justice organizations have expressed concern over Senator Scutari’s proposed legislation. While they commend Senator Scutari for his leadership on marijuana reform, they are disappointed that the legislation introduced does not include essential components to create a fair and equitable marijuana market in New Jersey.

“Marijuana legalization in New Jersey must be fair and equitable and must include policies to repair past harms and encourage participation in the industry,” said Roseanne Scotti, New Jersey State Director of the Drug Policy Alliance. “Marijuana laws in New Jersey have disproportionately harmed communities of color. African Americans are three times more likely to be arrested for marijuana than whites even though both use marijuana at similar rates. Legislation to legalize marijuana in our state must include policies to right these wrongs.”

Meagan Glaser is the Deputy State Director for the Drug Policy Alliance in New Jersey.  She was present at the hearing and shared that the social justice amendments suggested at the hearing yesterday included the following:

  • Protections for those who apply for a license or employment in the industry who have prior arrests and/or convictions
  • Access to the industry for individuals from different socioeconomic backgrounds
  • Requirement that the state shall actively seek to achieve a diverse industry
  • Provisions intended to repair communities most harmed by marijuana prohibition, including expungement and investment of revenue generated into communities
  • Civil penalties for marijuana activities that occur outside the new legal system to avoid the continuation of a criminal system that disproportionately harms communities of color

Glaser added, “The committee members and Chairman (who is also the sponsor of the legalization bill) were receptive to amendments. The Drug Policy Alliance and the New Solutions Campaign (a broad coalition of faith leaders, civil rights and racial justice advocates advocating for fair and equitable marijuana reform in New Jersey) are looking forward to working with Senator Scutari and other members of the legislatue to make sure this legislation benefits all New Jerseyans.”

As reported by nj.com, this is what SB 3195 would do currently:

  • -Decriminalize marijuana possession of up to 50 grams “immediately” and allow people who have been arrested for pot possession to expunge their records
  • Establish a Division of Marijuana Enforcement in the state Attorney General’s Office which would create the rules used to govern the legal market of growers and sellers
  • Allow people to possess up to one ounce of dried marijuana, 16 ounces of edible products infused with cannabis, 72 ounces in liquid form and seven grams of marijuana “concentrate
  • impose a sales tax on recreational sales beginning at 7 percent in the first year, climbing to 10 percent in the second year and jumping five percent more each year until it reaches 25 percent. Taxes on medical marijuana would be abolished
  • Give the five existing medical marijuana dispensary nonprofit groups first crack at selling recreational pot

Advocates for legalized marijuana have reason to be frustrated that the bill does not address the unfairness of the criminal enforcement of marijuana laws.  According to a study published by New Jersey’s ACLU, blacks and whites use marijuana at similar rates but blacks are far more likely to be arrested and convicted for doing so. In fact, this study determined that black residents were 3 times more likely to be arrested than their white counterparts. The ACLU estimated New Jersey police agencies spend about $143 million per year to enforce the state’s marijuana laws, and that 9 of 10 arrests targeted marijuana users rather than dealers.

It’s essential to add certain provisions to the legislation to ensure that SB 3195 creates a fair and equitable marijuana market and repairs the harms that have disparately impacted communities of color in New Jersey.

People can learn more by visiting DPA’s website (there’s factsheets on the issue and NJ-specific resources), watching the video below, following them on Twitter and joining the coalition.

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Published at Tue, 20 Jun 2017 17:57:06 +0000

Study links legalized pot with increase in car crash claims 

Study links legalized pot with increase in car crash claims 

The Columbian / Associated Press

DENVER — A recent insurance study links increased car crash claims to legalized recreational marijuana.

The Highway Loss Data Institute, a leading insurance research group, said in study results released Thursday that collision claims in Colorado, Washington, and Oregon went up 2.7 percent in the years since legal recreational marijuana sales began when compared with surrounding states. Legal recreational pot sales in Colorado began in January 2014, followed six months later in Washington, and in October 2015 in Oregon.

“We believe that the data is saying that crash risk has increased in these states and those crash risks are associated with the legalization of marijuana,” said Matt Moore, senior vice president with the institute, which analyzes insurance data to observe emerging auto safety trends.

Mason Tvert, a marijuana legalization advocate and communications director with the Marijuana Policy Project, questioned the study’s comparison of claims in rural states such as Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana with Colorado, Oregon and Washington that have dense population centers and how that affected the study’s findings.

“The study raises more questions than it provides answers and it’s an area that would surely receive more study, and deservedly so,” Tvert said.

Researchers accounted for factors such as the number of vehicles on the road in the study and control states, age and gender of drivers, weather and even whether the driver making a claim was employed. Neighboring states with similar fluctuations in claims were used for comparison.

Insurance industry groups have been keeping a close watch on claims when auto accidents across the country began to go up in 2013 after more than a decade of steady decline. Insurance companies found several possible factors at play in the spike that included distracted driving through texting or cellphone use, road construction, and an improved economy that has led to leisurely drives and more miles driven, as well as marijuana legalization.

“It would appear, probably not to anyone’s surprise, that the use of marijuana contributes to crashes,” said Kenton Brine, president of the industry group Northwest Insurance Council that represents companies in Washington, Oregon and Idaho. He added: “It would be difficult to say that marijuana is a definitive factor, lacking a citation, in a significant number of crashes to say that what we’re seeing here is a trend.”

The Highway Loss Data Institute said its study examined claims from January 2012 to October 2016.

“The problem here is that it’s a pretty new experience,” said Carole Walker of the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association, an industry group that covers Colorado, Wyoming, Utah and New Mexico. “This is the first study that has been able to isolate legal pot as one of the factors.”

Eight states and Washington, D.C., have legalized recreational marijuana for adults.

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety spokesman Russ Rader adds that alcohol impairment remains one of the biggest concerns on the road.

“While we have proven countermeasures, proven strategies for reducing alcohol impaired driving, there are a lot of unanswered questions about marijuana and driving,” Rader said.

A study released last year by AAA’s safety foundation found legal THC limits established by states with legal marijuana have no scientific basis and can result in innocent drivers being convicted, and guilty drivers being released.

Moore of the Highway Loss Data Institute said they hope the study’s findings will be considered by lawmakers and regulators in states where marijuana legalization is under consideration or recently enacted.

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Published at Thu, 22 Jun 2017 13:37:53 +0000

Medical Marijuana Implementation Bill Signed Into Law by Florida Governor

Medical Marijuana Implementation Bill Signed Into Law by Florida Governor

As promised, Florida Governor Rick Scott has signed into law a bill to implement the legalization of medical marijuana.

The governor’s signature comes after the House amended and passed the bill with a 103 to 9 vote, which was followed by a 29 to 6 vote in the Senate. The new law implements a medical cannabis legalization initiative approved by voters last year (Amendment 2). Controversially, the legislation removes patients’ ability to actually smoke medical marijuana, leaving them to rely on other methods of consumption such as edibles and tinctures.

“Don’t get me wrong: this legislation is FAR from perfect. But it is a major step forward for patient access, and is drastically different and more patient-friendly than either chamber’s original implementing bills”, says Ben Pollara of Florida for Care. Pollara was previously the Campaign Manager for United for Care, the group that successfully placed Amendment 2 on last year’s ballot.

It’s a big moment—but our work must continue as we make sure local ordinances, agencies and other entities don’t put additional road blocks to patient access”, Pollara said following Governor Scott’s signature. “We are also going to work to try and solve some of the remaining deficiencies of the bill, like the ban on smoking, which violates the clear intent of the amendment that was passed.”

About Anthony Martinelli

Anthony, co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of TheJointBlog, has worked closely with numerous elected officials who support cannabis law reform, including as the former Campaign Manager for Washington State Representative Dave Upthegrove. He has also been published by multiple media outlets, including the Seattle Times. He can be reached at TheJointBlog@TheJointBlog.com.

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Published at Fri, 23 Jun 2017 22:55:11 +0000

6 Stoner Essentials for the Summer of 2017

6 Stoner Essentials for the Summer of 2017

Summer!  Yay!  One of my favorite times of year to enjoy weed outdoors with my friends.  I am not sure what I love the most…the backyard barbecues, the festivals, the street fairs, the outdoor concerts, the hiking, the swimming….I could go on! Regardless which one of those activities is your favorite, you can be certain that these 6 stoner essentials for the summer of 2017 will suit your needs.  Enjoy!

The Blackrock Originals Safety Case

This case is completely outfitted and smell proof and is so compact it can fit in any small bag and is perfect for camping, hiking, or anything on the go really.  The basic kit/case Includes 1 Stainless Steel Grinder Card, 1 Hitter Pipe, 1 Poker Tool, and 3 Silicone Containers that can be used for flower or wax. The case has a carbon filter, which works by absorbing smell particles inside the case and the tape sealed zipper restricts airflow, making the case smell proof. Thoughtful design and high quality materials conceal your stash in plain sight, and your favorite vaping and smoking accessories will fit perfectly alongside the custom components that are included.

blackrock safety case

Ozone Socks Laced Weed and Weed Camo Socks

We tend to think of socks as more of a fall or winter item, but they are so much more fun when worn with shorts in the summer!  Not only is the design beautiful on these socks, but Ozone Socks are also made from the highest quality natural cotton fiber which offers strength and breathability.  The seams and designs are all knit into the socks and I can attest that they feel amazing!  Definitely one of the 6 stoner essentials for the summer of 2017.

ozone socks weed socks

The Genifer M Modern Leaf Pendent

This necklace is perfect for concerts, festivals, rooftop bars, or just he backyard cook out with friends.   This trendy but elegant solid 14kt gold pendant is modeled after a single cannabis leaf, a symbol of the growing field of legalized marijuana. This pendant comes with a beautiful 14K gold, 16″ luxury chain!  It is a stunning piece of jewelry with the smooth outline of a stylized sativa leaf and really stands out.  Plus…what a great conversation starter!

Genifer M modern pendant

The Dipper by Dipstick Vapes

You heard me rave about this product in my Mother’s Day article, but I just can’t tell you how much I love it.  The Dipper is by far the easiest, most discrete, and sleekest way to consume cannabis concentrates.  You can use this for dabs anywhere from a camping trip to an outdoor concert to a day at the river.  It fits in the palm of your hand and can be easily packed away in a small bag or purse or even a pocket.  The Dipper (essentially an electric nectar collector) is a unique and multi-functional concentrate vaporizer like I have never seen before. and has truly changed my life as a regular cannabis consumer.  Truly impressive and definitely one of the 6 stoner essentials for the summer of 2017!!

Dipper by Dipstick Vapes

Glass Packaging by Pollen Gear

You may recall seeing this product in a recent article we posted about cannabis storage design, and they are so classy and well versed for different cannabis products that I had to include it here as well.  The Pollen Gear glass collection brings superior design to child-resistant packaging to preserve the quality of premium cannabis product. These patent pending, custom glass jars are ideal for display & storage.  All packaging is air-tight, smell-proof, & water-resistant to maintain product freshness.  Also, these patent pending glass jars are made from the highest quality glass and fully recyclable polypropylene lids.  Perfect for any summer stoner outing where you want to bring you stash along, or for storage at home.

Pollen gear cannabis storage

The VIE Vaporizer

This vaporizer was made specifically for vaporizing dry herbs on the go and is of very high quality for the price point.  Device safety and ultimate user experience are driving forces for VIE, therefore this product has been thoroughly tested to meet strict electronic safety standards, strict material standards using food grade materials, and strict quality standards. All the while providing top performance in an small portable device that fits in your jeans pocket.  Perfect for any summer stoner day trip, walk in the park, or just some down time at home.

summer stoner

Enjoy the summer, and these 6 stoner essentials for the summer of 2017!

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Published at Wed, 21 Jun 2017 16:08:02 +0000

Cop who killed Philando Castile repeatedly blamed smell of marijuana for his fear of driver, newly-released transcript shows

Cop who killed Philando Castile repeatedly blamed smell of marijuana for his fear of driver, newly-released transcript shows

A transcript released Tuesday by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) revealed that police officer Jeronimo Yanez told investigators the smell of marijuana from Philando Castile’s car was a major reason he considered the man a threat.

Yanez, who is Latino, shot Castile, who is black, five times during a July 6, 2016 traffic stop in Falcon Heights, Minn. The shooting occurred seconds after Castile informed the officer he was carrying a gun. Castile, a 32-year-old elementary school cafeteria worker, had a permit to carry the weapon.

Castile’s girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, and her then-4-year-old-daughter were also in the car. The case sparked national outcry in part because Reynolds live-streamed the aftermath of the shooting on Facebook.

On Friday, a jury acquitted Yanez of second-degree manslaughter and endangering safety by discharging a firearm in the shooting. On Tuesday, authorities released thousands of pages of investigative reports along with dashcam footage of the traffic stop and shooting.

The day after the shooting, the BCA interviewed Yanez. According to the transcript (read the full document below), the officer told investigators he noticed the smell of marijuana before even observing the occupants of the vehicle.

“As soon as I get up to the car I’m hit with a odor of burning marijuana. And I know it’s already been smoked and I’ve been around, through my training, I’ve been around burnt marijuana and as a police officer I’ve been around burnt marijuana and fresh marijuana. So I know the distinct smells between both. I smelled burnt marijuana. And then I see a female child in the back. And then I see a front seat passenger, adult female in the front seat.”

Yanez also claimed the smell of marijuana made him think Castile might be carrying a weapon because he may be involved in drug trafficking.

“Being that… the inside of the vehicle smelled like marijuana, I didn’t know if he was keeping it on him for protection, for, from a, a drug dealer or anything like that, or any other people trying to rip him. Rip him meaning steal from him.”

In Minnesota, possession of 42.5 grams or less (1.48 ounces) of marijuana is a misdemeanor with a $200 maximum fine. Driving while under the influence of a controlled substance is a criminal offence, but presence of THC in a person’s body is not.

During the trial, Yanez’s defense lawyers claimed that Castile didn’t respond to the officer’s requests because he was high. According to The New York Times, Earl Gray, Officer Yanez’s lawyer told jurors: “He did not follow orders. He was stoned.”

Castile’s autopsy showed he had THC in his blood when he died, according to the St. Paul Pioneer Press. A defense witness testified that the THC level meant he had smoked within two hours of his death. But a prosecution expert testified that postmortem blood testing isn’t reliable when it comes to marijuana use, the paper reported.

During the BCA interview, Yanez told investigators that the fact that Castile and Reynolds would smoke marijuana in front of the daughter indicated to him that Castile wouldn’t care about taking the officer’s life.

“As he was pulling at, out his hand, I thought, I was gonna die. And I thought if he’s, if he has the guts and the audacity to smoke marijuana in front of the five year old girl and risk her lungs and risk her life by giving her secondhand smoke and the front seat passenger doing the same thing, then what, what care does he give about me. And I let off the rounds.”

Yanez also revealed to investigators that he intended to ask Castile to exit the vehicle because of the smell of marijuana.

“But you didn’t say anything about the marijuana?” investigators asked.

“I didn’t say anything about that … I didn’t wanna escalate the situation,” the officer replied.

During the trial, Yanez’s defense lawyers repeatedly mentioned marijuana, which was discovered in the vehicle after the shooting. “He’s (Castile) got a gun. He might be the robber. He’s got marijuana in his car. Those are the things in Officer Yanez’s head,” Gray said, according to The New York Times.

The New York Times also reported that prosecutor Jeffrey Paulsen said the dash cam video footage proved that Mr. Castile was “driving normally, pulled over quickly and was alert and courteous when talking to Officer Yanez.”

Joseph Kauser, Yanez’s partner, testified that he didn’t smell burnt marijuana in the car, the Pioneer Press reported. Police delivered evidence at trial of 6 grams of weed inside a plastic baggie tucked in a jar with the lid off on Reynolds’ seat.

Yanez’s defense also argued that Castile lied about his marijuana use when he applied for his gun permit and therefore acquired it illegally. As required under federal law, Minnesota’s permit-to-carry application states that the applicant “must not be an unlawful user of any controlled substance as defined in Chapter 152 of Minnesota Statutes.”

Yanez’s acquittal has led to days of protests, including one in St. Paul last Friday that shut down Interstate 94 for hours. Police arrested eighteen people.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Read Yanez’s post-shooting interview with the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension

(In the above article, utterances such as “uh” have been removed for reading clarity)

BCA’s interview with Yanez after the shooting. (Text)

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Published at Wed, 21 Jun 2017 21:08:49 +0000

Mexico Legalizes Medical Cannabis

Mexico Legalizes Medical Cannabis

A bill to legalize medical marijuana in Mexico has officially been passed into law, according to President Enrique Peña Nieto.

The new law directs the Ministry of Health to draft and implement regulations, with  “public policies regulating the medicinal use of pharmacological derivatives of cannabis sativa, indica and Americana or marijuana, including tetrahydrocannabinol, its isomers and stereochemical variants, as well as how to regulate the research and national production of them.”

The new law was passed by the nation’s lower house of parliament in April with an overwhelming vote of 371 to 11. “The ruling eliminates the prohibition and criminalization of acts related to the medicinal use of marijuana and its scientific research, and those relating to the production and distribution of the plant for these purposes,” the Lower House said in a statement on its website after its passage.

Mexico now joins just a small number of countries, including Canada, Uruguay and Portugal, that have legalized cannabis for medical purposes.

About Anthony Martinelli

Anthony, co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of TheJointBlog, has worked closely with numerous elected officials who support cannabis law reform, including as the former Campaign Manager for Washington State Representative Dave Upthegrove. He has also been published by multiple media outlets, including the Seattle Times. He can be reached at TheJointBlog@TheJointBlog.com.

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Published at Tue, 20 Jun 2017 04:45:26 +0000