cannabisnews.com: Those With Pot May Avoid Jail





Those With Pot May Avoid Jail
Posted by CN Staff on August 24, 2007 at 06:22:35 PT
By John Moritz
Source: Star-Telegram 
Austin, TX -- If a police officer in Texas catches you with a few ounces of marijuana you're going to jail, right? Maybe not. Beginning Sept. 1, police officers will have the discretion to issue citations similar to traffic tickets rather than hauling the offender to jail. House Bill 2391, which passed with virtually no opposition during the 2007 legislative session and was signed into law without fanfare by Gov. Rick Perry, does not change the penalty for pot possession.
But supporters say the discretion may only be used when the person is in possession of four ounces of marijuana or less and lives in the county where the stop was made, and only when the suspect is not considered a threat to public safety. Plus, they say, it will save a lot of time and paperwork for beat cops and it will help prevent local jails from being clogged with otherwise low-risk lawbreakers."From my perspective, it gives police officers another tool in their belt when dealing with nonviolent offenders," said Deputy Chief Dennis McKnight of the Bexar County Sheriff's Department. "Rather than spending three hours taking a guy downtown, booking him into jail, taking him before a magistrate and taking his paperwork up to the district attorney, I can write him a ticket compelling him to show up in court."And I can get back to my beat protecting my citizens from rapists and burglars," he added. "It's a no-brainer."But the Fort Worth Police Department and the Tarrant County District Attorney's Office see it differently. Assistant District Attorney David Montague said his agency is advising local law enforcement agencies to continue taking into custody anyone who violates the law governing marijuana possession. "It is our desire that they continue to handle these cases as they've been handled in the past," Montague said. "It would be a big hassle to implement the new policy, and there would be no guarantee that we would have the tools we need to make sure these folks made it back for their court appearance."Lt. Robert Rangel, who heads the narcotics division for the Fort Worth Police, said the department will follow the DA's recommendation. He said most arrests involving small amounts of marijuana are made by patrol officers who find the stash in the course of making traffic stops or other routine business."Our unit is targeting the trafficking of more dangerous substances," Rangel said.State Rep. Jerry Madden, a Richardson Republican who chairs the House Corrections Committee, said he introduced the legislation at the behest of law enforcement organizations who expressed concerns about local jail overcrowding and about whether police officers' time could be better spent rather than taking misdemeanor offenders into custody.The measure passed 132-0 in the House and 29-1 in the Senate. Houston's Dan Patrick, a Republican, cast the sole dissenting vote."This is not about decriminalizing marijuana," Madden said. "There's nothing in the legislation about that." Under the new law, possessing less than two ounces of marijuana remains a Class B misdemeanor punishable by 180 days in jail and a fine of up to $2,000. Possession of two ounces to four ounces remains a Class A misdemeanor and is punishable by up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine.Perry spokeswoman Krista Moody said the governor has no problem with local law enforcement agencies deciding to allow citations to be written in marijuana-possession cases as long as the suspects are held accountable.Ana Yanez Correa, director of the Criminal Justice Coalition, said the new law makes sense for both law enforcement agencies and for those accused of possessing small amounts of marijuana."This says to the police officer, you have the experience and judgment to decide whether this person needs to be taken to jail immediately," she said. "And for the person accused, if he is given a citation, he doesn't risk losing his job because he misses work or risk losing his home because he lost his job. He still has to go to court, and he still faces punishment."Source: Ft. Worth Star-Telegram (TX)Author: John MoritzPublished: August 24, 2007Copyright: 2007 Star-TelegramContact: letters star-telegram.comWebsite: http://www.star-telegram.com/Related Article: Lightening Up a Bit on Those Who Light Uphttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread23108.shtmlCannabisNews -- Cannabis Archiveshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/list/cannabis.shtml 
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Comment #63 posted by BGreen on September 01, 2007 at 20:14:24 PT
Great minds think alike, whig
LOLThe Reverend bud Green
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Comment #62 posted by whig on September 01, 2007 at 19:33:50 PT
BGreen
I guess we're on the same page. :)
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Comment #61 posted by whig on September 01, 2007 at 19:30:00 PT
Hope
"One young man in the area, recently, was preparing to leave for military service. Eighteen years old and busted for possession and maybe distribution or delivery. I can't really remember. Busted right out of the military right off the bat. That'll teach him. "No future for you kid!"Good for him. Might have saved his life.
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Comment #60 posted by Hope on September 01, 2007 at 17:37:20 PT
Forest Service Warns of Marijuana Grow Sites
http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v07/n1018/a12.html?397"The federal plan unveiled Thursday focuses on dismantling the infrastructure of drug trafficking organizations through investigative efforts. The plan calls for doubling the number of federal agents as well as establishing a dedicated special investigations group." -------------------"Doubling the number of federal agents"?
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Comment #59 posted by Hope on September 01, 2007 at 17:17:58 PT
The Sunny Side of Life
I was listening to the sound track from "Oh, Brother! Where Art Thou?" earlier today. They convinced me....and it wasn't easy. 
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Comment #58 posted by Hope on September 01, 2007 at 17:13:34 PT
Sounds like a real life Weeds 
Gone to hell in the venerable hand basket.http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v07/n1017/a05.html?397Tape Shows Former Wilton Mayor Telling Agents About Drug Operation
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Comment #57 posted by BGreen on September 01, 2007 at 17:04:48 PT
Looking on the sunny side indeed
It's been over two weeks since we stared darkness in the face, and after getting rid of 90% of the post-traumatic stress disorder, Mrs. Green and I are trying to spend as much time as possible in the sun.Every time I start to get consumed with anger towards the perpetrators of such terror towards us, I'm reminded that I should be giving thanks that they failed miserably in their attempt to destroy us.Hope's words on that day still play in my mind. I believe that God was right there with us, the Holy Spirit gave us calmness and taught us at that moment how to defend ourselves and what to say. I also believe that God used our words to shame these purveyors of evil and give them a chance to turn from their evil ways and stop their reign of terror.Yes, the sun and the Son have shone quite brightly on us, and I'd like to project that energy to all I encounter.The Reverend Bud Green
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Comment #56 posted by Hope on September 01, 2007 at 16:36:07 PT
BGreen
"Looking on the sunny side. Looking on the sunny side of life."Might as well. You're probably right. Maybe his was a life saved because it kept him from getting killed in war.This sounds good....http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v07/n1017/a06.html?397THE LATEST FROM HEMP - BRAIN FOOD, INDEED 
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Comment #55 posted by BGreen on September 01, 2007 at 16:28:23 PT
Post #52
Hope, I would argue that there is an 18-year-old alive in Texas today because he was booted out of the military.That's honestly the first time in my life that I actually see something good in an arrest for cannabis. Quick, arrest every single service member for misdemeanor cannabis possession and kick them out of the military! NOW!The Reverend Bud Green
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Comment #54 posted by FoM on September 01, 2007 at 13:52:03 PT
Hope
We only have a weekly paper and I don't see any marijuana arrests around here for as long as I can remember back.
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Comment #53 posted by Hope on September 01, 2007 at 13:42:53 PT
"Maybe the law needs changing."
Then we'd have the problem of getting our law enforcement "Drug Warriors" to follow it.It can be done, though.
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Comment #52 posted by Hope on September 01, 2007 at 13:41:03 PT
I don't know what rates and stats are
but our local paper, for a small town and rural area, has minors and older teens being arrested for possession nearly every day according the police and sheriff's reports. It's so sad. I don't even have any idea how many a year get arrested. But I see it's some, and that seems like too many, to me. One young man in the area, recently, was preparing to leave for military service. Eighteen years old and busted for possession and maybe distribution or delivery. I can't really remember. Busted right out of the military right off the bat. That'll teach him. "No future for you kid!" A better way of handling this stuff than outright prohibition would have surely prevented this life upset from ever happening. Yes. I know. The kid broke the law. He made some bad choices... but prohibition made them life threatening. This stuff has always worried me. Very much. But it's even worse now that my grandchildren are teenagers and becoming teenagers, and their chances of the risk of running afoul, somehow of one of these laws ... really worries me...that much more. Sure..."Not my kids"...but the risks of a "Debacle" touching them...increases with their age and freedom. Quite an extraordinary number of people seem to think the law is unjust. That means it probably is. Maybe the laws need changing. As Rusty White over at LEAP says, "There's got to be a better way."
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Comment #51 posted by FoM on September 01, 2007 at 12:42:06 PT
Hope
Is there a high arrest record for minors in your state or any state? I really don't know. 
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Comment #50 posted by Hope on September 01, 2007 at 12:38:56 PT
Sheriff Painter...
Hmmmm.It's not going to change until the law changes. Completely. It worries me when kids, or anyone...but kids, especially, get arrested and holy hell ticketed so much. It worries me when they apparently get used to being arrested so much.
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Comment #49 posted by FoM on September 01, 2007 at 11:07:26 PT
Related Article from MyWestTexas.com
Local Law Enforcement Not Going To Write Citations for Certain Marijuana Offenses ***By Lynsey Bradley, 
Midland Reporter-Telegram September 1, 2007 While the state provides options, police and sheriff's department officials promise trips to jail for those caught carrying pot. Effective today, law enforcement agencies across the state of Texas have the discretion to decide if people in possession of 4 ounces or less of marijuana will be cited or if they will go to jail. But Midland officials say they have no plans to write a citation for the offense. "If they're stupid enough to violate the law, they're stupid enough to go to jail," said Midland County Sheriff Gary Painter. Painter said as far as the Sheriff's Office is concerned, anyone with any amount of marijuana found in their possession will be arrested. "I believe if you have any amount of marijuana, you should be placed in jail," Painter added. Interim Police Chief Price Robinson said possession of less than 2 ounces is a Class B misdemeanor and possession of between 2 and 4 ounces is a Class A misdemeanor. The bill signed by Gov. Rick Perry on June 15 received little opposition in the Texas House or Senate. It also authorizes law enforcement officers to issue citations for other Class A or Class B misdemeanors such as driving without a valid license, and leaving graffiti where damage is less than $500, provided the person resides in the county where the offense occurred. The punishment allowed for such crimes was not changed by the bill. Both Painter and Robinson said they have been writing tickets rather than making arrests for some minor Class A and B misdemeanor violations for more than five years, but narcotics offenses, including those involving marijuana, have and will continute to mean a trip to jail. "We have never written a notice to appear citation for any amount of narcotics, nor will we in the future," Painter said. Officials of the Marijuana Policy Project in Washington said Texas House Bill 2391 will not only save taxpayers money, but will also make the streets of Texas safer if law enforcement agencies decide to use it. "This law is good for Texas because each marijuana arrest costs Texas taxpayers $2,000, takes a police officer off the street for three to four hours and fills a space in jail that should instead be used to house a violent criminal," said Rob Kampia, executive director of the MPP. "By citing instead of arresting marijuana users, Texas will now be safer." The MPP reported marijuana possession arrests make up between 6 and 7 percent of all Texas arrests. The group also reported that each of Texas' five largest cities could save more than $1 million per year by taking advantage of the law. The law also covers other misdemeanor offenses, such as graffiti, criminal mischief of damage worth less than $500 and driving with an invalid license. Painter said the fact that drug possession could be treated like a speeding ticket is a major problem. "They're trying to make it to where (a marijuana violation) is as socially acceptable as getting a speeding ticket; I'm sorry but that ain't it. That is not the message that needs to be sent out to the people," Painter said. Robinson also said writing a citation for marijuana possession is not enough of a punishment. "To me, 4 ounces is quite a bit of marijuana. Someone is going to go to jail for that much. Any amount is too much. I think the summons is good on certain offenses, but not this one," he said. "I think state legislators felt that (the new bill) would be a tool to help alleviate jail overcrowding, but I think they should have just left that one off the books. I don't know why they had to include it." Midland County District Attorney Teresa Clingman said she can see how a ride to jail for a first-time offender could be a rude awakening for them. "I personally think that by being taken to jail, someone who hasn't smoked marijuana very long might be steered in another direction and given a reality check," Clingman said. "If you have a younger person who's never been to jail before and they are taken to jail, that just might wake them up. But if you just issue them a ticket, it may not put an impression on them; it'd be like getting a ticket for not putting on a turn signal. "Just getting a ticket would be like just getting a speed ticket. And I certainly don't put smoking marijuana in the same category as jaywalking or speeding or running a stop sign," she explained. FYI Class A misdemeanor: Up to one year in county jail and/or $4,000 fine Class B misdemeanor: Up to six months in jail and/or $2,000 fine. Note: On top of the fine is court costs that can vary from $150 to $500. Only one charge in the state of Texas requires a 10-day notice of citation -- a Texas resident with a valid Texas license and registration is cited for speeding. For any other offense, they can go to jail. Source: Midland County Sheriff Gary PainterCopyright: MyWestTexas.com 2007 http://www.mywesttexas.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=18773689&BRD=2288&PAG=461&dept_id=475626&rfi=6
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Comment #48 posted by FoM on August 28, 2007 at 10:00:26 PT
Press Release from MPP
New Marijuana Law Could Save Texas Taxpayers Millions  If Authorities Use ItAugust 28, 2007http://www.mpp.org/site/apps/nl/content2.asp?c=glKZLeMQIsG&b=1157875&ct=4327095
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Comment #47 posted by Dankhank on August 25, 2007 at 11:46:53 PT
clear papers ...
saw a variety 'round here that were touted to be made from hemp. Tried four or five times to use, but stopped because the papers markedly changed the sense of the smoke.Don't know if the claims were true, will investigate ...Peace to all who seek the truth ...
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Comment #46 posted by FoM on August 25, 2007 at 08:17:22 PT
Related Article With Video
Local Authorities Sticking To Old Marijuana Laws***By Selena Hernandez, KENS 5 Eyewitness News August 25, 2007A new Texas law, HB 2391, takes effect September 1, and it gives all agencies the discretion to issue a ticket, as opposed to sending offenders to jail, if found with marijuana.  
 
 
However, local authorities say your stash won't grant you a free pass. The controversial cannibus law is going up in smoke in Bexar County. "What sounds good in theory isn't really that good in practice," Bexar County Assistant District Attorney Cliff Herberg said. The law allows law enforcement officers to determine whether they will cite or arrest someone found with 4 ounces or less of pot, but don't expect that to be the norm in San Antonio. "We're sticking with what's in place," Herberg said. Snipped:Complete Article: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/metro/stories/MYSA082407.potlaws.KENS.69a4e542.html
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Comment #45 posted by FoM on August 25, 2007 at 05:58:13 PT
whig
Toker00 posted a link last night and I do remember his name and I'm sorry. I don't recognize his work though. 
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Comment #44 posted by whig on August 25, 2007 at 01:35:22 PT
FoM
I don't know if you ever read Crooks & Liars but check out this thread.http://www.crooksandliars.com/2007/08/24/open-thread-california-considers-hemp-pilot-program/Sad news, I just read in those comments, Aaron Russo has died.
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Comment #43 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 22:18:38 PT
Hemp rolling papers
I'm surprised that got by the Nanny, actually.
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Comment #42 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 22:11:03 PT
Clear Papers
I've seen them in pictures. They look like they would be fun to smoke.
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Comment #41 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 22:04:20 PT
Oops
I misunderstood Toker00's statement about wondering if those clear papers could be made from hemp cellulose, as wondering about hemp papers being made.Speed reader that I am. :0)And no, I didn't know they were available in the United States. That's good. I was really impressed with them. 
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Comment #40 posted by whig on August 24, 2007 at 21:43:57 PT
The GCW
You can't ask an applicant, "Are you a registered Republican?" because that would run afoul of rules that Congress has made that limit the use of partisan identification. Asking about Roe v. Wade is a proxy question.
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Comment #39 posted by whig on August 24, 2007 at 21:41:51 PT
The GCW
That's because they were trying to set up a Republican colony in Iraq.
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Comment #38 posted by The GCW on August 24, 2007 at 21:29:29 PT
From My e-mail
(Did you know that when Americans applied for government jobs in Iraq immediately after the fall of Saddam, one of the questions on the questionnaire was, "Do you support the US Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade?).-0- Exerpt... from:There is a self-defeating aspect of our thinking about Iraq. Why can't this government get its people under control? We spend billions of dollars and the lives and limbs of thousands of Americans to support a government that can't govern. So we get frustrated, and we send in more troops, and we put more pressure on the government to institute reforms and to get tough with dissidents, and it only gets worse. How much money do we have to spend, and how many lives need to be lost before it will get better? The answer to the enigma is that it is our support for this government that makes it unable to govern the country. The more money we spend, the more soldiers we send, the more pressure we put on them, the less they are an Iraqi government, and the more they are an American client regime. An American client regime will always create resentment among Iraqis who would prefer not having foreigners run their country.So it is like when you have been given the wrong medicine and the more you take, the sicker you get. Or when you think you are dousing a lab fire with water and you actually picked up the alcohol. The more we push, the less legitimate the Iraqi government becomes. When you add the perfectly normal suspicion of the people in the Middle East that we are there for the oil, and not for their benefit, then you see that the more active we get, the worse our situation becomes. Our American can-do attitude pushes us in exactly the wrong direction. Arrogantly we think that we can solve any problem in the world if we just have the will and spend the resources. The President is preparing the country now for the down-side of our eventual departure. When we leave he will say it was not a faulty policy but a failure of will. As in Vietnam people will argue for decades over whether we could have "won" if we had the will. In me it generates screaming, wall-kicking frustration. (I don't actually scream or kick walls. I write emails.) We would never tolerate another country exerting pressure on our government to implement "reforms." We would never tolerate foreign troops on the ground in the United States. We would never tolerate another government telling us that we should do things like they do. Why do we think that a majority of the Iraqis would want the United States to do all of these things for them? "Don't tread on us either!"In the last few days American politicians have been critical of the Maliki government. Then Thursday President Bush felt the need to shore him up, so he said he supported Maliki. "He is a good guy." We are acting like whether or not we support him matters. That is because whether or not we support him does matter. This makes it more obvious that he is our client and not a patriot with indigenous support. Maliki may be seen as an extension of the Bush regime. (Did you know that when Americans applied for government jobs in Iraq immediately after the fall of Saddam, one of the questions on the questionnaire was, "Do you support the US Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade?).We had the same frustration with the Ngo Dinh Diem regime which we supported in South Vietnam until 1963. We think that when politicians express and support American values (Diem was a Christian, although most of Vietnam was Buddhist) people should support them, because obviously American values are the best, and everyone does or should know that. But leaders of other countries who support American values, for instance a free market economy that allows unfettered access to Iraq oil, look like foreigners to their own people. We might not think that Moslem religious values are more important than a free market economy or majority rule, but in Iraq it doesn't matter what we think. As long as we think it does, we will continue to try to put out a fire with flammable liquids.
 
I hope you are well.
 
KenSenator Ken Gordon, District 35-Denver
Web: www.kengordon.com
Email: ken kengordon.com
My Profile: Update My Profile
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Comment #37 posted by afterburner on August 24, 2007 at 21:23:42 PT
One for whig
"Non-violence leads us to the strongest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages."
-- Thomas EdisonBTW, ditto for hemp papers in Canada.
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Comment #36 posted by BGreen on August 24, 2007 at 21:22:59 PT
whig re: post #7
To me, my CNews family is a Blessing.The Reverend Bud Green
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Comment #35 posted by BGreen on August 24, 2007 at 21:19:44 PT
Actually, you can buy hemp papers in the US
There are several brands at my local smoking shop, but I find them too harsh, so I prefer a thin rice paper with no glue such as Club.I would love a 100% hemp cellulose paper. That would ROCK!The Reverend Bud Green
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Comment #34 posted by whig on August 24, 2007 at 21:16:14 PT
Hope
Plenty of hemp rolling papers out here.
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Comment #33 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 21:06:09 PT
Toker00
They've had hemp cigarette papers in Europe for years. Over ten years ago a man I know, from the Netherlands, that rolled his own tobacco, had hemp papers that he had brought with him when he visited here. They were so tough and rolled and smoked very nicely. Rough tobacco didn't poke holes in them and they didn't fail under too much moisture being applied. There was never a bad roll. They were really good papers. Of course...we can't have anything like that in this country...not even for tobacco. The Nanny State won't allow it. I was really impressed with them, though. Not to mention, a bit wistful.
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Comment #32 posted by Toker00 on August 24, 2007 at 21:05:00 PT
Oh no.
The passing of a Patriot.http://www.prisonplanet.com/articles/august2007/240807_b_aaron.htmA monent of silence.Toke.
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Comment #31 posted by BGreen on August 24, 2007 at 20:59:52 PT
They're not cheap but not expensive
I paid 5 euros for 40 king size sheets which are 4 inches wide.That converts to about $6.90, which is less than 18 cents per sheet.Oh, by the way, they burn slowly and perfectly. You don't get runners like with paper.The Reverend Bud Green
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Comment #30 posted by afterburner on August 24, 2007 at 20:58:17 PT
Hope #15
"Yes, this thing could get worse. I pray to God that it doesn't."You have my prayer of agreement. Amen.
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Comment #29 posted by Toker00 on August 24, 2007 at 20:57:14 PT
BGreen
How about that? And Hope said the most wonderful thing about her. She said that when I hold her, and look at her, that I will be looking into the Face of God. I believe that because that is exactly how I felt when I looked at my Son's face that Super Real day in '79.Toke.
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Comment #28 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 20:54:48 PT
Lol! Thanks, Toker.
The poll. It is a staggering result, poll wise. I'd say that was response to a lot of oppression in the Lone Star State. Probably the oppressors haven't noticed it yet.
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Comment #27 posted by Toker00 on August 24, 2007 at 20:52:09 PT
Thanks B and RRGreen
How much more expensive than regular papers? Wish I had had this option 50,000 joints ago...or so...I wonder if they can be made from Hemp?Toke.
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Comment #26 posted by BGreen on August 24, 2007 at 20:44:29 PT
Thanks, Hope and Toker00
We're recovering from post-traumatic stress syndrome, but we are so much more secure in our beliefs and that gives us the peace to know that, even if we're attacked again, we will still be standing, exactly as Hope reminded us from Ephesians 6.Congratulations on your granddaughter, Toker00!The Reverend Bud Green
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Comment #25 posted by RevRayGreen on August 24, 2007 at 20:32:02 PT
Clear Papers
are the future, in 20 years a pack of zig-zags will probably fetch a grand on e-bay :)I need to pick up another pack......
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Comment #24 posted by BGreen on August 24, 2007 at 20:28:39 PT
Yes, they have clear rolling papers
I picked up a pack in Amsterdam as a souvenir.The brand name is aLeda and they're made in Brazil.They're made of 100% plant cellulose, so they're safer than even the thinnest rice paper, and they have no taste whatsoever. There's no glue because it sticks to itself when moistened.Some of the coffeeshops wrap their really oily jelly hashes in this cellulose instead of plastic because you can just smoke the wrapper.The Reverend Bud Green
aLeda Clear Rolling Papers
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Comment #23 posted by Toker00 on August 24, 2007 at 20:19:46 PT
BGreen and Mrs.
I was so hoping you would be here a week later. And from now on.Toke.
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Comment #22 posted by Toker00 on August 24, 2007 at 20:18:00 PT
Groundswell.
475 votes. 83% say it's a "Good Idea".There IS Hope in Texas! Hope, don't you dare move!Toke.
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Comment #21 posted by FoM on August 24, 2007 at 20:11:09 PT
Hope and Toker00
Thanks. I voted in the poll and Toker00 I never saw anything like that.
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Comment #20 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 19:56:29 PT
There's a poll
http://www.star-telegram.com/389/story/211948.html
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Comment #19 posted by Toker00 on August 24, 2007 at 19:54:03 PT
Question:
I recently saw the strangest thing. A clear rolling paper. I've never seen one before. I was offended because it looks like clear plastic. Has anyone seen these? Fill me in...or is someone pulling my leg...?Also, from Pete's...http://blogs.salon.com/0002762/Thanks.Toke.
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Comment #18 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 19:42:02 PT
BGreen comment 5
It's REALLY good that you are still here.Being part of an American Resistance to tyranny and terror from our own government and citizens was not something that I could have ever imagined that I would have to be a part of. And that's what we are. A very public, American Resistance in a very ugly War. 
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Comment #17 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 19:37:47 PT
15 and 16
in response to 13.
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Comment #16 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 19:33:08 PT
Correction
They already are killing. I should have said "Or they start wholesale killing"...or "Or they start wholesale mass executions."
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Comment #15 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 19:31:29 PT
"or we make more laws and build more prisons"
Or they start killing. It's easy enough to imagine those who would promote one bullet to the head as a more feasible "remedy" to what they like to call "The drug problem". Actually, we don't have to imagine it. It's already happened. I see it now and then on pro-prohibitionist blogs and comments...and of course, there's that icon of sanity, Darryl Gates, who already said he'd like to kill all drug users. (We only assume he doesn't mean the children on Ritalin or the people taking anti-depressants and all the omnipresent pharmaceutically produced drugs.) For a fact, it's something some of the prohibitionists have been itching to do for a long time.Prohibitionists ARE the "Drug problem".Yes, this thing could get worse. I pray to God that it doesn't.
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Comment #14 posted by Toker00 on August 24, 2007 at 19:09:58 PT
It smelled all the way home...
A friend gave me a button the other day. It was a nice button. Brown, Green, Red. Nice texture. I was anxious to push this button through my button hole when I got home. As I road down the highway, I was grateful for a friend like this. And a button like this. It wasn't a button lost, for once. It was a button found. As I pushed the button through the button hole, I admired how it seemed to fit perfectly there. Once pushed all the way through the hole, the button did it's job. It held together things that could fall apart without the button there. Like Depression. Like Alcoholism. Like Cancer.Want to help a good friend? Give them a button. Help them hold something together...Toke. 
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Comment #13 posted by FoM on August 24, 2007 at 17:36:22 PT
Hope
Jail for Pot seems so wrong to me. Why haven't people opened their eyes and grown with the changes society is going thru? Nothing stays the same so when something is different in time we learn to at least tolerate what we don't approve of or we make more laws and build more prisons. 
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Comment #12 posted by Hope on August 24, 2007 at 17:20:10 PT
It's not much and in some instances,
like obviously, it's going to be in Tarrant County, where Fort Worth is, it's nothing at all.All the shackling of people and putting them in cages has bothered me a lot. It's human abuse. So that can improve for the better in some cases. Of course, they'll still be taking people's herb and suspending their driver's licenses for six months as far as I can see. Not having a driver's license for six months in Texas can be super rough. Walking to work or anywhere else is not usually much of an option here. Things tend to be spread out and there is quite a large rural population. There's not a lot of affordable and available public transportation, even in the towns and cities. Plus, even if the county does decide to implement it, it's only for residents of the county in question. So it's not really statewide, by any means. The fines are outrageous and they're just the tip of the iceberg, as Taylor said. There are fees and fines at every turn once they get their hands on you. What makes these laws and their punitiveness for cannabis possession so outrageous, is that it shouldn't even be a criminal offense in the first place. But a lightening up on the "kick in the teeth" from bullies, even if only on occasion, and if you're in the right place, is better than not lightening up at all, ever, anywhere.Something that bothers me about the reporting on this is that this change in law is not just about cannabis possession. There are several misdemeanors involved in this discretionary change in law. Not having liability motor vehicle insurance and some thefts, too, I think. I saw them listed once or twice early on in the year, but not at all in this recent reporting.All that being said, I am grateful that some people will be spared the cruelty and indignity of having their hands bound behind their backs and being locked in a cage for having plant material. So it is a small step forward to a more sensible and sane... not to mention, humane, policy. A small, even tiny, step towards a better way is far better than no movement at all towards that goal.
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Comment #11 posted by FoM on August 24, 2007 at 16:38:42 PT
Taylor121
I love you guys and gals down in Texas. I get angry like a mother gets angry when someone is bullying their child. I can't help it. The fine is too high and can hurt people and that's what bothers me so much. That kind of money will make an incentive to hassle a pot smoker. Money when it's a small amount doesn't get the attention.
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Comment #10 posted by Taylor121 on August 24, 2007 at 15:59:03 PT
I'm not happy
I'm not happy with it as is, but the point is we are moving forward. The law has always been that harsh, and those fines you see aren't all the fines. You have to consider the probation fees etc. as well. If you get a lawyer, you could pay up to 6000 bucks in Texas over a small marijuana arrest.
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on August 24, 2007 at 15:33:11 PT
Taylor121
Those fines could totally financially cripple someone. They are so big and that is what bothers me. We have a maximum of a $100 fine for anything under 100 grams. I would be happy if that was the way it was in all the states at this point. I'm glad you are happy with the new law. I guess as long as we are moving forward it is ok for now.
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Comment #8 posted by Taylor121 on August 24, 2007 at 15:20:10 PT
FoM
The old laws are still the exact same. Class B and Class A are how the law has always been, only now cops don't have to arrest you if that's policy at that department. It's a step forward, not back. Granted, more work needs to be done.We do have some law enforcement in Texas that supports making marijuana a fine only offense.
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Comment #7 posted by whig on August 24, 2007 at 12:25:35 PT
BGreen
You know Cannabis is Good, so what does that make the C-News family?
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on August 24, 2007 at 12:06:19 PT
BGreen
It's great to have you here.
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Comment #5 posted by BGreen on August 24, 2007 at 11:42:10 PT
No-brainer?
Actually, the no-brainer would be for Johnny Jack-Boot to fight real criminals and leave the cannabis partakers alone.No tickets, no arrests, no guns pointed at our heads, no threats, no lies, just leave us all alone.No more terroristic threats against innocent people!One week later, it's REALLY good to be here with my CNews family.The Reverend Bud Green
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Comment #4 posted by dongenero on August 24, 2007 at 11:29:24 PT
thanks mayan
For reminding me to look at the positive message in the article rather than the negative.
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Comment #3 posted by mayan on August 24, 2007 at 10:21:21 PT
NO-BRAINER
"Rather than spending three hours taking a guy downtown, booking him into jail, taking him before a magistrate and taking his paperwork up to the district attorney, I can write him a ticket compelling him to show up in court."And I can get back to my beat protecting my citizens from rapists and burglars," he added. "It's a no-brainer."That from a cop??? Hell has frozen over!THE WAY OUT IS THE WAY IN...Student Scholars, Elizabeth Edwards, and FOX News (video):
http://911blogger.com/node/10833Davin Coburn gets owned on the radio after History Channel hit piece (audio): 
http://forum.prisonplanet.com/index.php?topic=2432.0READY FOR MAINSTREAM 9/11 TRUTH:
http://ready4mainstream.ny911truth.org/9/11/07 - GENERAL STRIKE:
http://www.strike911.org/9/11 WAS AN INSIDE JOB - OUR NATION IS IN PERIL:
http://www.911sharethetruth.com/
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Comment #2 posted by dongenero on August 24, 2007 at 10:19:45 PT
well.....
as long as they can continue to punish people. That's the important thing , huh?Punish, punish , punish,.....why? 
Who cares?....just punish, punish, punish. Because they're in charge.Again, why?
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on August 24, 2007 at 06:24:53 PT
Is It About Making More Money?
"This is not about decriminalizing marijuana," Madden said. "There's nothing in the legislation about that." Under the new law, possessing less than two ounces of marijuana remains a Class B misdemeanor punishable by 180 days in jail and a fine of up to $2,000. Possession of two ounces to four ounces remains a Class A misdemeanor and is punishable by up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine.
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