Initiative Seeks New Medical Pot Law  

Initiative Seeks New Medical Pot Law  
Posted by CN Staff on June 24, 2006 at 08:05:56 PT
Source: Bangor Daily News 
Madison -- By early March 2008, tens of thousands of Maine people who suffer from debilitating diseases and chronic pain could find relief in a county marijuana store - a pharmacy that would supply pot to patients who can document that their conditions warrant self-medication, a marijuana advocate said Friday."Many, many Maine people don't smoke pot for a good time; they smoke to relieve pain and suffering," Don Christen of Madison said Friday.
Christen launched a petition drive on Friday to get a marijuana initiative on the November 2007 ballot. The petition will require 51,000 valid signatures to be turned into the secretary of state by January 25, 2007, to be on the ballot that fall.According to an eight-year-old study by the Maine Task Force on Substance Abuse, 95,000 Maine adults routinely use marijuana. Christen, leader of Maine's legalization of marijuana movement, said that figure is underestimated and that a large percentage of those users are patients seeking relief.Christen, 52, has lobbied for pot for decades. He has been arrested for cultivation, possession and distribution and is awaiting trial in Somerset County for providing pot to five people suffering from debilitating diseases under Maine's Medical Marijuana Initiative, passed in November 1999.Maine is one of 11 states that permits the medical use of marijuana, including Alaska, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.But the law passed by Maine citizens is flawed, Christen maintained. "The problem is there is no provision for a distribution system," he said Friday. "When people voted in 1999, they thought they were getting a plan that would work and they didn't."The new initiative not only sets up such a system, it also would require the state to offer educational leaflets, provide protection for doctors and providers that prescribe marijuana to their patients, and, for the first time, set a final definition of marijuana for the state.The initiative would allow up to 6 pounds per patient per year, an amount set by the federal government that allows 1 gram joints for its marijuana patients. "That's 5.7 pounds per year," Christen said. "A patient would use six to seven joints a day, depending on their illness."Christen said many sick people don't use the existing program because they are scared."The potential for abuse is minimal, compared to the benefit for patients," he said. "What we are talking about is helping sick people get pot and keeping them away from the black market and its exorbitant prices."Since Maine already has decriminalized marijuana, Christen maintained that the state has the right to establish a distribution system. By setting up nonprofit outlets that would stock marijuana grown by authorized providers, insurance companies could be required to pay for the herbal medication. The proposal is to have stores called "buyers clubs" in all cities with more than 25,000 people and one in each county.Christen said the initiative has built-in protection for prescribing doctors. "That has to turn some heads," he said."This initiative will be the model for the country," Christen predicted. "We used math and science to find out what people needed. There is nothing like this. This will be a Maine law, for Maine citizens."Anyone who wants to volunteer to circulate petitions can contact Christen at 696-8167 or check: http://www.mainevocals.netSource: Bangor Daily News (ME)Published: Saturday, June 24, 2006Copyright: 2006 Bangor Daily News Inc.Contact: letters bangordailynews.netWebsite: Medical Marijuana Archives
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help

Comment #1 posted by Richard Zuckerman on June 24, 2006 at 08:56:14 PT:
I would implore Maine med pot advocates to elicit Montel Williams and Dr. Morgan for testimony. On June 8, 2006, these two individuals testified in favor of New Jersey State Senate Bill 88, but Senate Health Committee Chairman, Joseph Vitale, refused to even post this Bill for a vote, stating "it is too controversial"! What he failed to mention was that he received $150,000 over the past three years from health/pharmaceutical companies, which his Secretary told me via telephone "...but the money went to charitable causes." Riiiight! His idea of charitable causes might be law enforcement! Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr., one of only two House Energy and Commerce Committee, Subcommittee members OSTENSIBLY representing New Jersey citizens, who has a branch office right across the street from Johnson & Johnson headquarters, in New Brunswick, N.J., also votes against Cannabis liberalization! These "educated" Rutgers University students and graduates deserve to be victims of their own flawed voting choices!!!The "plan for a New American Century" by President Bush and Dick Cheney are not in favor of freedom for Americans! Last night, I began to watch the VCR tape entitled THE TRUTH ABOUT IRON MOUNTAIN, about President Kennedy's committee investigating what would happen if America stopped the wars. The movie quotes the committee report stating that wars give government a false economic claim to money, that government could not maintain power over the people without wars, and that a mechanism must be put in place to accomodate the people if wars are to end.My own small, miniscule, contribution is to vote Libertarian and Green party candidates. No Democruds or Republicrappers for their war against Americans, their New World Order.In regards to my lawsuit asking the Appellate Division of the Superior Court of New Jersey to establish a cause of action for Retaliatory Prosecution under the 1947 New Jersey Constitution, the United States Supreme Court handed down their Opinion a couple of days ago which defines retaliation in such a way as to make it easier to sue for Retaliation. In the U.S. Supreme Court case, the woman was transferred to work on the railroad tracks, which requires more physical labor than her forklift operator title.As I have been visiting PTA meetings, Board of Education meetings, writing letters, complaining about the flawed public school curriculum for quite some time now, please read the recently published article entitled "It's the Curriculum, Stupid: There's Something Wrong with It," by Dave F. Brown, in the June 2006 issue of the education magazine known as Phi Delta Kappan, pages 777-783, then call and write your PTA, Boards of Education, local, State, and federal legislators, about it? Am I speaking to a brick wall? Richard Paul Zuckerman, Box 159, Metuchen, New Jersey, 08840-0159, (Cell telephone number)(848) 250-8879, richardzuckerman2002; Member of:;
[ Post Comment ]

Post Comment