Caregivers Should Provide More Than Just Marijuana

  Caregivers Should Provide More Than Just Marijuana

Posted by CN Staff on November 25, 2008 at 20:11:54 PT
By Mike McKee, The Recorder 
Source: Recorder 

California -- Being a caregiver under the state's medical marijuana statutes, the California Supreme Court ruled unanimously Monday, requires more than supplying patients with pot or occasional trips to the doctor.Instead, the court held, it requires consistently providing the "daily life necessities" of patients well before marijuana is considered an option.
"The words the statute uses -- housing, health, safety," Justice Kathryn Mickle Werdegar wrote, "imply a caretaking relationship directed at the core survival needs of a seriously ill patient, not just one single pharmaceutical need."The 22-page ruling is bad news for the average medical marijuana grower who wants to sell to ailing friends, but good news for law enforcement officers who would like to rein in a growing number of outlaw caregivers around the state.Berkeley solo Lawrence Gibbs, who represented a Santa Cruz County man claiming caregiver status, said the ruling "drastically narrowed the class of people who can qualify as primary caregivers" and forces those seeking medicinal pot to turn to government-approved collectives and cooperatives.San Francisco-based Deputy Attorney General Michele Swanson, who presented the state's position, said the decision "draws the line more clearly" on who can be a marijuana caregiver."There have been a lot of illegal operations popping up," she said, "and this decision has made clear they are operating outside the law." Roger Mentch was arrested in 2003 after narcotics investigators found 190 plants in various stages of development in his house. He claimed he grew so many plants because he was the primary caregiver for five other people, whom he counseled on usage, taught how to grow, and even sporadically drove to the doctor.Mentch was charged with cultivating marijuana and possessing it for sale after officers decided he was running a for-profit business that enabled him to deposit as much as $5,500 a month in his bank account.At trial, Mentch argued he should be allowed to present the affirmative defense that he was entitled to grow marijuana and sell it to others because he qualified as a primary caregiver under the Compassionate Use Act of 1996, codified as Health & Safety Code §11362.5. But Santa Cruz County Superior Court Judge Samuel Stevens refused.Mentch received three years' probation. But San Jose's Sixth District Court of Appeal reversed his conviction last year, saying there was enough evidence that Mentch qualified as a caregiver to permit the affirmative defense at trial. The Supreme Court seemed torn on the issue at oral argument in October.On Monday, the justices disagreed with the appellate court, holding in People v. Mentch, 08 C.D.O.S. 14435, that medical marijuana caregivers must have consistently provided care to patients before they found they might benefit from marijuana use."What is not permitted," Werdegar wrote, "is for an individual to establish an after-the-fact caregiving relationship in an effort to thereby immunize from prosecution previous cultivation or possession for sale."Werdegar said the court's interpretation should "pose no obstacle" for bona fide caregivers."The spouse or domestic partner caring for his or her ailing companion, the child caring for his or her ailing parent, the hospice nurse caring for his or her ailing patient," she wrote, "each can point to the many ways in which they, medical marijuana aside, attend to and assume responsibility for the core survival needs of their dependents."The Compassionate Use Act, she added, "allows them, insofar as state criminal law is concerned, to add the provision of marijuana, where medically recommended or approved, as one more arrow in their caregiving quiver." The Supreme Court also tossed Mentch's argument that he deserved the affirmative defense under the medical marijuana statute that allows individuals to advise patients how to cultivate their own medical marijuana."As it is undisputed Mentch did much more than administer, advise and counsel," Werdegar wrote, "the program provides him no defense."Complete Title: Medical Pot Caregivers Should Provide More Than Just Marijuana, Says Calif. Supreme Court Ruling: Recorder, The (CA)Author: Mike McKee, The RecorderPublished: November 26, 2008Copyright: 2008 ALM Properties, Inc.Contact: CannabisNews Medical Marijuana Archives

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Comment #32 posted by E_Johnson on November 29, 2008 at 14:48:32 PT
Lemons and frost
Citrus sure hates the frost. I lost about half my crop from a rogue freeze a couple years ago. I don't think we can grow peaches here, but I don't know. My neighbors have figs and persimmons. They didn't used to harvest but now it appears they do. I surmise that their kids gave them a talking to about urban agriculture or something and they finally realized they have actual food growing the back yard.
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Comment #31 posted by FoM on November 28, 2008 at 17:54:02 PT
We have peach and pear trees. We planted them almost 30 years ago. This year our neighbor picked the fruit and gave it to a couple of her clients that she works for in home health care. They canned them and I'm sure are enjoying them this holiday season. We can't grow lemons in our climate though.
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Comment #30 posted by E_Johnson on November 28, 2008 at 17:39:13 PT
FoM I remember that song
That's nice. Thanks. Lemons are $1.49 each where I live. Whoeee I feel rich.
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Comment #29 posted by FoM on November 28, 2008 at 16:18:46 PT
Lemon Tree
EJ, your lemon tree made me start thinking about this song. We had a nice day yesterday and today.Peter, Paul & Mary - Lemon Tree
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Comment #28 posted by E_Johnson on November 28, 2008 at 14:41:36 PT
Post-Thanksgiving wishes
I was cooking all day yesterday. Didn't get to log in.Hope everyone had a nice time. I made a lemon cake with lemons from my own tree. Tasted like lemon candy. It's all gone now. Heh heh heh.There's a Mork and Mindy marathon today on Sci Fi Channel.Nanu nanu!
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Comment #27 posted by afterburner on November 27, 2008 at 21:33:42 PT
OverwhelmSam #3 
Going viral is a great idea. Look how the Ontario government responded to a viral campaign on facebook by teenage drivers facing reductions on carpooling to a single passenger:Young drivers may get break.
Nov 26, 2008 11:29 AM. 
Be the first to comment on this article... 
Premier Dalton McGuinty is suggesting the Ontario government may back off proposed passenger restrictions for teenage drivers.An online group set up on Facebook to protest new rules that would limit a teen driver with a G2 licence to just one teenage passenger has over 116,000 members.McGuinty was asked today if he was open to lifting the teen passenger limit in the face of such opposition, and said governments "never, ever" get something perfect on the first try.He said the government would be "all ears" if people can give provide good ideas to help strengthen and improve the quality of the legislation.
}If Obama actually listens to our concerns and takes them seriously, we can see some significant progress on cannabis reform in the future.
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Comment #26 posted by FoM on November 27, 2008 at 06:32:35 PT
Thank you for the song. Here's mine for the day. I just love this video.Willie Nelson on A Colbert Christmas
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Comment #25 posted by OverwhelmSam on November 27, 2008 at 06:17:46 PT
Happy Thanksgiving FoM and All.
Happy Turkey day FoM and everyone. Turn it up and light Up!
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Comment #24 posted by FoM on November 26, 2008 at 19:31:52 PT
Thanks Hope
I found a video on this program. It should be interesting. Happy Thanksgiving!Marijuana Nation
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Comment #23 posted by Hope on November 26, 2008 at 19:25:25 PT
Marijuana Nation
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Comment #22 posted by FoM on November 26, 2008 at 18:13:42 PT

Thank you. We are having friends over this year. I'm making a nice ham instead of turkey. The turkey episode with Sarah Palin made me change my mind! LOL!
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Comment #21 posted by The GCW on November 26, 2008 at 17:53:57 PT

It seems, 
To a person who has common sense, there's no need to say, take care of Yourself... ButTake care of YourselfLove
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Comment #20 posted by FoM on November 26, 2008 at 17:15:44 PT

I'm doing OK. Thank you for asking. Sometimes Thanksgiving brings different thoughts when a family is in some turmoil because of illness or death. We still have things to be thankful for but it makes it a humble holiday in a way. I hope you and your family have a nice holiday.This song has always been one of my favorite church songs.Amazing Grace - 2007 - Holdman Display
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Comment #19 posted by The GCW on November 26, 2008 at 16:55:15 PT

How are You doing?
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Comment #18 posted by FoM on November 26, 2008 at 15:30:57 PT

Storm Crow
Happy Holidays. I played and got 420 grains of rice.
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Comment #17 posted by Storm Crow on November 26, 2008 at 14:18:52 PT

OT: Thanksgiving gluttony....
Hi FoM, Hope all is well with you and yours. I'm posting this here and there to help raise a bit of awareness about the UN World Food Program. Well there you are, watching the football game or just kicking back, pants unbuttoned because you just ate too much. You know, gluttony IS a sin. Especially when there are people starving at this very moment. So Granny's going to act as the "High Priestess of the Ganja Goddess", and assign you your penance!Your penance is, since you have had more than your share of munchies today, so you must provide for the hungry! I want you to go to the site below and play the game. You can do the vocabulary words, or even just the multiplication tables (hit "Change Subjects"). But play until you have equaled, in grains of rice, the number of calories you consumed today."According to some research, the average Thanksgiving meal is a whopping 3,000 calories. Nibble your way through some leftovers, and you could be consuming more than 4,000 calories in one day!" That comes from this site- (Add a couple of slices of Mom's Pecan Pie with whipped cream and you better add another 1,000 calories! lol) The game is EASY- they give you a word (or multiplication problem) and 4 possible answers. You pick one and you earn 20 grains of rice for the UN World Food program. You are feeding the starving! 4,000 grains sounds hard, but you get 20 grains of rice for every right answer (no penalty for wrong answers). So even if you think that you ate 4,000 calories today, that's only 200 words or problems. (My 3rd graders do 100 multiplication problem worksheets every day! You're a big kid and can do more than a 3rd grader!)I've done 10,000 grains a day, every day (and I'm on dial up!) since right before Xmas. I get kids at school to practice multiplication with it (and BOY do they need that practice!). It should take the place of that dumb solitaire game ( or what-ever you do to fill those "wasted minutes") on YOUR computer. You can play it for 10 seconds, or 10 hours, but play it every day. Make a big difference in some someone's life! 

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Comment #16 posted by FoM on November 26, 2008 at 13:32:54 PT

OT: Happy Holidays
It's that time of year when we try to be a little brighter and smile a little more. I found this nice holiday video and I hope others enjoy it too.Music Box Dancer - 2007 - Holdman Christmas Display
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Comment #15 posted by OverwhelmSam on November 26, 2008 at 09:29:24 PT

In Other News
South Dakota Up To Decriminalize Brings Wrath on Overpaid Police and Prison Guards
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Comment #14 posted by HempWorld on November 26, 2008 at 09:18:51 PT

Under the 'new' rules:
You must be clair-voyant and predict when exactly you will be sure you will get a life-threatening illness.Then just before you get this illness you must establish a relationship with someone who grows marijuana legally and rent a room from them or have them bring you food and/or cook you meals.Voila, you are prepared to get marijuana from that person if you need it.But of course the real reason behind all of this is to keep marijuana out of the hands of patients:Although patients can turn to cooperatives or clubs, Gibbs said, the resulting centralization of cultivation and supply will make raids and prosecutions much easier for federal authorities, who are not bound by Prop. 215.
On a mission from God!
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Comment #13 posted by HempWorld on November 26, 2008 at 09:12:52 PT

This new ruling is a Catch-22: How can you already have established a relationship with a 'caregiver' if you are newly diagnosed with a very serious and debilitating disease? (and if you did not use marijuana before, recreationally or other)This is a total hoax and we, the people are bound and gagged by it!
On a mission from God!
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Comment #12 posted by HempWorld on November 26, 2008 at 09:01:28 PT

Our Masters Have Made New Rules To Bind Us:
Lawrence Gibbs, attorney for the Santa Cruz County man who appealed his marijuana-dealing convictions, said the court "made it much, much more difficult for qualified patients to get their medical marijuana."And:Marijuana suppliers can qualify as primary caregivers ONLY if they were already taking care of a patient - providing medical aid or housing - when they began furnishing the drug, Justice Kathryn Mickle Werdegar said in Monday's ruling.So that's it, just one 'justice' can change the rules because they are our rules and masters. Oh wise one ...And it's getting more and more absurd, it's sad, so sad ... it's a sad sad situtation and it's getting more and more absurd ...
On a mission from God!
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Comment #11 posted by FoM on November 26, 2008 at 08:46:32 PT

President Elect Obama
I will be glad when he becomes President in January and we will see how he will govern. I haven't had any problems with what he is doing so far. He said that 47% of the people voted for McCain and he wants to be their President too. Bush said when he stayed President for his second term that he now had a mandate. I don't want to be judged by what if or maybes but facts only. Most people give a new President 100 days as President to get established. I am planning on doing that too. Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!
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Comment #10 posted by Hope on November 26, 2008 at 08:15:11 PT

*sigh*I hope you're wrong, too.
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Comment #9 posted by duzt on November 26, 2008 at 08:11:38 PT

about the input letters
I sent a letter (I have sent several in the past too) to the Obama team and I always get the same form letter telling me how I can help Obama and support him. I don't believe anybody ever reads any of the letters sent. I hope I'm wrong, but I'm starting to think that "change" meant going back to the Clintons' way of doing things. It looks like we elected Hillary in a lot of ways. I really do hope I am be a cynic and that I will be wrong, but so far, things aren't looking so good. We shall see......
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Comment #8 posted by duzt on November 26, 2008 at 08:01:37 PT

the gov
I sure wish they would regulate the guys stealing billions from us and not worry about the farmers who are making 5000 a month. I guess it's safer to rip the country off for billions. So much talk about how bad it is for people to make a living, no wonder this country is economically finished. It seems the only way to make money here is to get credit or be dishonest and greedy like most of those getting rich. I was hoping things would get better with Obama, I think I was being naive. Something tells me Obama is going to keep things right where they are, I hope I'm wrong, but things don't look to be improving.
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Comment #7 posted by The GCW on November 26, 2008 at 07:43:06 PT

US CA: PUB LTE: Obama's Choices For Drug Czar And 
US CA: PUB LTE: Obama's Choices For Drug Czar And AG Wed, 26 Nov 2008Source: Capitol Weekly (Sacramento, CA)Note: Title by map NewshawkOBAMA'S CHOICES FOR DRUG CZAR AND AG Dear Editor: Regarding the article about Obama's choices for Drug Czar and AG, as a medical marijuana patient myself, but a Republican one, let me be the first to say, "I told you so." I say this here and have said it in the comments in the NORML blog article, the one which appeared in The Hill blog. The sick and dying are not an important voting block, and I can guarantee that President elect Obama's response to medical marijuana will be or already has been, "Pfffffffft," as he shoves the folder off his desk onto the floor, which will be followed by the Presidential directive, "don't let this come across my desk again, ever." The scientific evidence is clear that marijuana has multiple medical applications, some of which the Federal government has patents upon, although President-elect Obama must not have seen or has refused to review any of it, as he is on record as doubting the efficacy of marijuana as medicine. President-elect Obama's non-change on the ( medical ) marijuana front will show conclusively that prohibition and its drug war implementation is an uniquely bipartisan policy, which is loved, cherished and protected by both parties equally. Under Clinton millions were arrested on marijuana charges, and medical marijuana users, meaning the sick and dying, were made the central target and fodder for the Clinton-McCaffery reign. Under GW Bush, millions were arrested on marijuana charges, including, still, the sick and dying, just as under Clinton, during the Bush-Walters-rule. Why on Earth should we have expected anything different? This is, incidentally, one more in the now countless examples of the baby boom generation's new credo under which it governs: "It was OK for me when I did it, but not for you, now that I am in charge." Eric Johnson, Los Angeles 
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Comment #6 posted by NikoKun on November 26, 2008 at 06:41:09 PT

another misunderstanding
This sounds like another case of the Judge not knowing what they're talking about...Plus... It's absurd to put such tight restrictions on pot, it's safer than aspirin!
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Comment #5 posted by Sam Adams on November 26, 2008 at 06:18:23 PT

This seems like a very bad development. The Caregiver-patient option is a key element of every state's medical MJ law that has a working one.The sheer hypocrisy and cruelty of this decision boggles the mind. Does Big Pharma care for its customers? Are you kidding me? They take your money (price fixed by the govt of course), give you your Vioxx or Plavix and then send you home to die.The tragic irony of it: The greedy and corrupt medical system won't let citizens provide a natural herb to each other to relieve pain and sickness. 
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Comment #4 posted by Hope on November 26, 2008 at 06:16:52 PT

"Submit Your Ideas"
Big change already. I've never seen such an easy avenue opened to citizens to express their ideas to governors. Submissions of ideas about government and changes we'd like to see are being actively sought. Imagine that! That's pretty amazing all by itself and it'll be even more astounding if they actually pay attention to us.I'm thankful.
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Comment #3 posted by OverwhelmSam on November 26, 2008 at 04:32:35 PT

Obama's Input Page for Civil Rights
Here is everyone's chane to tell the Obama administration to change marijuana from a Category 1 drug based on several high level recommendations starting with the DEA's own administrative judge. Distribute this opportunity to be heard on marijuana legalization to activists far and wide: Click on "Submit Your Ideas" if you have not done so already. Could it be as simple as making this initiative go viral to be heard on our issue and insist change?Obama intends to expand the use of drug courts. We don't need to waste law enforcement and court time for adult possession and use of marijuana. It is a safer recreational drug than alcohol, tobacco, coffee and most chemical prescription drugs approved by the corrupt FDA.Go To: post your recommendations.From this link:"Expand Use of Drug Courts: Obama and Biden will give first-time, non-violent offenders a chance to serve their sentence, where appropriate, in the type of drug rehabilitation programs that have proven to work better than a prison term in changing bad behavior." 
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Comment #2 posted by museman on November 26, 2008 at 00:55:33 PT

The catch-22 game of smoke and mirrors. A completely alien language subject to re-definition at the drop of a bank account. Money for nothin' but tricks 'n fees. Rulership of the elite, by the elite, and for the elite."I'd like to buy a vowel please. You can pay me for the consonants. Now spin the wheel."FREE MEDICAL MARIJUANA FOR EVERYONE who needs it....
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Comment #1 posted by HempWorld on November 25, 2008 at 20:27:30 PT

It's getting more and more absurd ...
God help us!
On a mission from God!
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