D.C. Records its First Legal Pot Deal in 75 Years
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D.C. Records its First Legal Pot Deal in 75 Years
Posted by CN Staff on July 30, 2013 at 04:49:33 PT
By Mike DeBonis
Source: Washington Post
Washington, D.C. --  The 15-year struggle to legalize medical marijuana in the District ended like this: A 51-year-old Northwest resident entered a North Capitol Street rowhouse Monday evening and emerged 90 minutes later with slightly less than a half-ounce of street-legal, high-grade, D.C.-grown cannabis.Shortly before 6 p.m., Alonzo walked into the high-security sales room of the Capital City Care dispensary with two store employees to consummate the city’s first legal marijuana deal in at least 75 years. He purchased about $250 worth of three strains of cannabis.
“It’s a beautiful natural product that is from rain, sun and soil,” Alonzo said, wearing a dark T-shirt with a green logo of a cannabis leaf over a medical cross. “Mother Nature doesn’t make mistakes.”Alonzo agreed to share his experiences navigating the District’s medical marijuana system on the condition that he be identified only by his middle name, concerned that public knowledge of his medical marijuana use could prove sensitive at work.Capital City Care’s sales Monday to two patients represent the culmination of a fight that dates to the mid-1990s, when HIV/AIDS activists first fought to put medical marijuana on the citywide ballot. Nearly 70 percent of voters approved a 1998 legalization initiative, but Congress intervened for more than a decade, preventing the implementation of a medical marijuana program.After Congress lifted its restrictions in 2009, the District government started a slow process to set up a strict regulatory and licensing regime limited to city residents with specific chronic illnesses, with lawmakers and city officials saying they were moving deliberately to reduce the risk of future federal intervention.Initial hopes that cannabis could be made available to patients in late 2010 gave way to early 2011 and then mid-2012 as the city moved through the painstaking and politically sensitive process of licensing marijuana growers and retailers, as well as certifying the doctors who would recommend the medicine and patients who would consume it.Alonzo, who is HIV-positive, said he had been following the rollout of the medical marijuana program since the beginning of the year. The combination of antiviral drugs he takes to manage his infection, Alonzo said, causes him frequent insomnia and occasional difficulty in swallowing and digesting.Marijuana, he said, was not initially his preferred therapy. “Like many people, I certainly had my fair share in college, but then I really left it alone for a long time,” he said. A mid-1990s trip to Amsterdam with his former partner, who had a more advanced HIV infection, demonstrated how cannabis could help address the virus’s symptoms and the side effects of the drugs used to treat them.In March, Alonzo approached his doctor about seeking a marijuana recommendation.“He asked why, and I outlined my challenges,” he said. “I really don’t want to have a prescription drug dependency, and they weren’t working for the insomnia. He was agreeable to it. And then the long wait.”To secure his first dose, Alonzo had to visit his doctor, who had to request recommendation forms from the health department, which then processed the forms and issued him a patient card.Although the city’s medical marijuana program has started, it remains a slow start. D.C. Health Department spokeswoman Najma Roberts said that as of Monday, only nine patients have obtained a city-issued medical marijuana card. About 20 doctors, she said, have requested forms from the city allowing them to recommend cannabis to their patients.Capital City Care, the first of three planned District dispensaries to secure an operating license, offers four strains of medical cannabis, priced from $380 to $440 an ounce, grown by Northeast-based Holistic Remedies. More varieties will be offered once two other cultivation centers — including Capital City Care’s own — produce their first salable harvest, said Scott Morgan, a spokesman for Capital City Care.Morgan said he was not aware of any health insurers willing to cover medical marijuana purchases. The prices, he said, reflect the highly regulated nature of the District’s system and the firm’s investment in its dispensary and growing operations.Senior citizens, veterans and low-income patients are eligible for discounts of 10 to 15 percent, he said.“After a couple of years of hard work, it’s exciting to open our doors and serve the patients our facility is really for,” Morgan said. “This is a moment we’ve all been looking forward to for a long time.”Alonzo opted for the Blue Dream, Jack Herer and Master Kush strains and, to consume it, a $120 Magic Flight vaporizer.The StickyGuide, a Web site reviewing medical marijuana strains and dispensaries, said Blue Dream “is helpful for reducing pain and stress while maintaining energy levels” and offers a flavor “reminiscent of hash with a subtle hint of blueberry underneath.” Master Kush, the site says, is a “classic indica-dominant strain” whose characteristics include “helping [to] promote relaxation and assisting with sleep.”Wayne Turner, one of the leaders of the 1998 initiative effort, called Monday’s sales “the end of the beginning.”“It’s taken us 15 years to get to this point,” he said, adding that the program had much left to prove. “We can do this. We can do this right. The world isn’t going to come to an end. People are going to have access to something that really is going to help them, really help them ease their suffering.”Source: Washington Post (DC) Author:  Mike DeBonisPublished: July 29, 2013Copyright: 2013 Washington Post CompanyContact: letters Website: URL: Medical Marijuana Archives 
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Comment #10 posted by ekim on August 01, 2013 at 11:52:58 PT
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Comment #9 posted by Hope on August 01, 2013 at 10:07:47 PT
Thinking about those treasonous "warriors".
Remember when the extraordinary minds of the drug warriors in D.C. were excited about using a deadly fusarium, hopefully to completely remove cannabis from the face of the earth, by way of disease caused by that fusarium they were chomping at the bit to use? Cannabis is, no doubt, one of humanity's most valuable and beneficial plants. They were so happy to announce that hope of wiping out, completely, one of the most valuable and useful plants on earth, until people started objecting because they would likely wipe all tomato plants from the face of the earth as well. Why doesn't their electorate see their lack of common sense, much less, their total lack of any sort of wisdom or reason? Some of them still hold office. It's tragic and disgusting that any of them still have the power to cause so much harm to others and to our planet. 
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Comment #8 posted by ekim on August 01, 2013 at 08:18:57 PT
more on the new fibers
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Comment #7 posted by Hope on July 31, 2013 at 14:53:23 PT
That situation in D.C. was a huge insult
to citizens and the supposed sanctity of the vote in this country. Too many politicians that imagine themselves as leaders, or rulers, instead of representatives want to operate more and more like a third world dictatorship. Every politician that denied the citizens the power of their vote should have been charged and tried as a traitor to our country. I was horrified at that action against the will of the electorate then, and am still grieved and flabbergasted that it ever happened and most of all, that the dastardly villains actually got away with it.
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Comment #6 posted by ekim on July 31, 2013 at 12:09:02 PT
OT a look a two new electric cars
one with carbon composit fibers
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Comment #5 posted by runruff on July 31, 2013 at 08:56:42 PT
Lawyers and Doctors and Cops, oh my!
L. Frank Baum ate shrooms. He even said so.
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Comment #4 posted by Sam Adams on July 31, 2013 at 05:27:24 PT
user tip
Magic Flight vaporizer is a complete waste of money, useless. Just FYI. Many other good ones available for the same money.Sadly, in 1998 the citizens of DC voted to allow the sick to grow their own cannabis by an overwhelming majority. This law is what the government decided to give us, 15 years later
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Comment #3 posted by afterburner on July 30, 2013 at 20:34:04 PT
'Srooms Ameliorate PTSD
New study shows magic mushrooms repair brain damage caused by extreme trauma. 
Monday, July 29, 2013 by: Anna Bragga.
Tags: psilocybin, psychological disorders, magic mushrooms.
Learn more:
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Comment #2 posted by HempWorld on July 30, 2013 at 08:50:29 PT
Oakland, California, looks set to ban hammers
The city of Oakland, California, looks set to ban hammers, wrenches, walking canes, camera tripods and all "objects of destruction" as they call them. Has Oakland gone insane, too? Everything!
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Comment #1 posted by runruff on July 30, 2013 at 07:34:12 PT
Michelle, lock and load you psycho freaks!
Let's see you come down on Pollytown! Please do, this will be something to see? And, if they leave the pot industry alone in DC, well won't that be interesting as well?DEA=in-house terrorist.
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