Illinois Senate Approves Medical Marijuana Bill
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Illinois Senate Approves Medical Marijuana Bill
Posted by CN Staff on May 17, 2013 at 12:14:36 PT
By Monique Garcia Clout Street
Source: Chicago Tribune
Springfield -- The Senate today approved legislation that would allow doctors to prescribe medical marijuana to patients with serious illnesses, sending the measure to Gov. Pat Quinn. The issue pitted supporters arguing for compassion for those suffering from pain they say only cannabis can ease against opponents who contend the legislation would undermine public safety.Sponsoring Sen. Bill Haine, D-Alton, argued the measure is one of the toughest in the nation. Haine said his bill does not reflect other states that have “sloppily” instituted medical marijuana laws.
“This bill is filled with walls to keep this limited,” said Haine, a former Madison County state’s attorney.Sen. Kyle McCarter, R-Lebanon, raised concerns about lawmakers endorsing a product that classified as a controlled substance by the federal government, arguing marijuana is a gateway drug that could lead users to harder substances.“For every touching story we have heard about the benefits to those in pain, I remind you today that there are a thousand time more parents who will never be relieved from the pain of losing a child due to addiction which in many cases started with the very illegal, FDA-unapproved addiction-forming drug that you are asking us to now make a normal part of our communities,” McCarter said.The proposal would create a four-year trial program in which doctors could prescribe patients no more than 2.5 ounces of marijuana every two weeks. To qualify, patients must have one of 33 serious or chronic conditions -- including cancer, multiple sclerosis or HIV -- and an established relationship with a doctor.Patients would undergo fingerprinting and a criminal background check and would be banned from using marijuana in public and around minors. Patients also could not legally grow marijuana, and they would have to buy it from one of 60 dispensing centers across Illinois. The state would license 22 growers.The measure drew strong opposition from the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police and the Illinois Sheriffs' Association, which sent a letter to the governor and lawmakers warning the proposal would not stop medical marijuana card holders from driving while under the influence. They suggested blood and urine testing be included in the legislation to allow police to determine whether card holders had marijuana in their system while driving.Haine argued the law has safeguards to prevent that, including designating on a driver's license whether they use medical marijuana.The Senate vote was 35-21, with 30 needed to pass the bill. It goes to Quinn, who has not indicated whether he will sign it. The Democratic governor recently said he is open minded to the legislation. Source: Chicago Tribune (IL)Author: Monique Garcia Clout StreetPublished: May 17, 2013Copyright: 2013 Chicago Tribune Company, LLCWebsite:  Medical Marijuana Archives 
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Comment #9 posted by Dagman11 on May 19, 2013 at 13:11:56 PT:
I wouldn't say medical marijuana is a cul-de-sac. I would say that it is merely a transition between prohibition and legalization. Without MMJ, one can make a strong point that we might not currently have full legalization in two states. There is no doubt that we have to continue to press ahead, but the wind is certainly not the the prohibitionists' backs. Although with the entrenched financial interests that prohibition has garnered, we have to expect continued resistance. The Illinois MMJ measure is the way it is because of the political landscape. If you take Chicago away from Illinois, all you have is another Iowa on the shores of Lake Michigan. This law has been in the works for 6 years, and the only way they could pass it is in a watered down form. It's not ideal in any way, but it is better than having nothing. 
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Comment #8 posted by Storm Crow on May 18, 2013 at 14:34:39 PT
And in Ohio....
Ohio AG certifies medical marijuana petition, Ohio (AP) - A proposed constitutional amendment to legalize medical marijuana in Ohio has cleared an initial step to get before voters.Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine certified a summary of the proposal on Friday and said the submission contained the 1,000 valid signatures required for the effort to move forward.A group called the Ohio Rights Group is behind the Ohio Cannabis Rights Amendment, which calls for a commission to regulate the use of medical marijuana and permit Ohioans to grow industrial hemp for paper or clothing. (snipped)
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Comment #7 posted by Sam Adams on May 18, 2013 at 08:43:29 PT
AB, yes the recent ruling in favor of Monsanto seed patents was also scary. That would be another way to co-opt legalization, just sign us over to Monsanto like a bunch of plantation serfs. Here! You can have all the herb you want - from Monsanto. With extra Round-up! Makes it spicier.
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Comment #6 posted by Sam Adams on May 18, 2013 at 08:42:07 PT
Kapt, yes, cul-de-sac is perfect. The problem is that money rules the land, always has, not the fake govt. structures that are set up.  All it takes to completely shut off the medMJ repeal movement is money - look at Washington state. Money makes it easy to come in and buy the law you want.Look at Prop. 215 in '96, every single medical MJ law passed since has been progressively weakened, even though popular opinion and science has moved in the opposite direction.The grassroots movement was co-opted by outsiders with cash, and eventually Pharma moved in like hyenas circling a campfire. As I've pointed out before, the recent Massachusetts law was actually written by a PR/Lobbying firm founded and run by an Eli Lilly corporate attorney, and Lilly has been a major client of that firm for decades.Another thought - every billionaire in the United States is heavily invested into Pharma and petro stocks. I can guarantee you this is true, these are two of the biggest wealth generators for the investor class, these corporations have the highest profit margins every year.Those interests will never want to see everyone growing their own medicine, fuel and food, free of interference and taxation from the govt.However, everything I've heard about 2016 sounds good - the movement is planning a host of legalization referendums, modeled after CO more that Wash. We'll see if that holds up over the next few years.  If the 2016 referendums are modeled after WA that would signify the end of chances for real legalization IMO.
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Comment #5 posted by afterburner on May 17, 2013 at 23:23:03 PT
Now, Congress Wants to Ban State GMO Label Laws
Sam Adams #3 & kaptinemo #4 Genetically Modified Democracy: Monsanto and Congress Move to Stomp on States' Rights.
 By Ronnie Cummins. 
 Organic Consumers Association, May 16th, 2013 year, 73 U.S. Senators voted against a proposed amendment to the agriculture bill, put forth by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). The Sanders amendment would have guaranteed states the right to require labels on genetically engineered food products. We know who those senators are. And we know which representatives supported the King Amendment this week, passed out of the House Ag Committee, which if it passes, will take away states’ rights to label GMOs. we trust the current Congress to do the right thing regarding cannabis? Their massive support of GMOs and Roundup pesticide suggests that many of them are beholden to Monsanto for financial backing. Their judgement seems to be impaired as they favor corporate food monopolies over the health of the people.
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Comment #4 posted by kaptinemo on May 17, 2013 at 17:26:36 PT:
Sam, it always sucks to be on the bleeding edge of
sanity.I have in several fora opined that MMJ has essentially become an evolutionary cul-de-sac, a dead end. I have pointed out in those fora the obvious: MMJ States are still being mercilessly harassed, despite popular laws sanctioning MMJ use, and in CA's case, the harassment has gone on for almost two decades. I have also pointed out the (supposedly) obvious fact that such harassment has, for all intent and purposes, stopped in its' tracks in WA and CO. The inference cannot be any plainer, any clearer, any simpler...and still I catch Hell in some of those fora for daring to state the obvious as to what needs to happen. Namely, quit messing around with MMJ, and expend every effort for full, adult-only legalization.Worse still, I fear that what I have been warning about since late last year is happening: the movement will be 'Anzio'-ed by failing to push forward, hard, on the heels of the prohibs, who had been sent reeling by by the victories in 2012. They were in disarray, shock, dazed that a bunch of 'potheads' could organize better than they could and routed them at the polling booth. They were so shook up that they did not even bothering to lick their wounds, they were so stunned. But the reform movement, I fear, is making the same mistake my generation did in the mid-to-late 1970's; that is, becoming complacent. That allowed the opposition to dig in, as the Nazis did at Anzio, which later led to a counterattack that cut the American forces on the beach to pieces. Ourlast 'Anzio' led to the past 30+ years of Hell that we have experienced and continue to experience as culture.Each generation gets only one shot at legalization; mine, frankly, blew it. And I fear that the next one may miss their chance if we don't admit that MMJ was never meant to be more than a stop-gap, a means to get the truly sick and needy off the clear it for the final charge. Giving the opposition time to regroup and counter-attack is foolish and stupid...but that's just what seems to be happening. I hope, I really, truly do hope I am wrong, but being middle-aged, having lived long enough, you see patterns in Human affairs taking place over and over, and this looks like History is again repeating itself. I pray to whatever Deity there is I am wrong...but I am too often right. For you can always bank on Human stupidity, every time.
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Comment #3 posted by Sam Adams on May 17, 2013 at 16:37:55 PT
current state of med MJ
I hope people can see what's been happening now for a few years - medical marijuana is effectively dead as a political cause in the US. Progress has ground to a halt. Everything depends on legalization now, and that cause is halfway to being co-opted as we speak. The opposition has succeeded in stopping med MJ or moving backward at the state and federal level. Listen to what these guys are saying - "we're limiting this as much as we possibly can".Today, medical MJ patients across IL use cannabis in privacy. After this law passes, they will be investigated and fingerprinted by the government. That's not how you help people folks, that's how you persecute someone.
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Comment #2 posted by runruff on May 17, 2013 at 16:24:06 PT
Senator McCarter.
I am inclined to say something like "unbelievable" and that would be true but grossly understated.How is it that a person in this power arena can have such a profound effect on our planet with nothing more than a busy-body's knowledge of this important issue. He is operating on superstition and wives tales with a healthy mix of yellow journalism and self serving government propaganda. He does not have science, personal experience, anecdotal evidence or collective historical knowledge. Where do we dig these impostors up and who are the political Tourette Syndrome voters who elect them to office?
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Comment #1 posted by Ryannn29 on May 17, 2013 at 14:29:38 PT:
"pain of losing a child due to addiction which in many cases started with the very illegal, FDA-unapproved addiction-forming drug that you are asking us to now make a normal part of our communities,” Senator Kyle McCarter said.Are you serious? ARE YOU SERIOUS? Tobacco is TOTALLY ADDICTING yet its legal. Alcohol is more addicting that cannabis. And you're worried about cannabis? How do you logically think and live from day to day life. The points just don't match up. Your statement is quite completely and utterly insane, Senator McCarter.
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