The Week in Weed 7-28-12 Cannabis News

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Cannabis Cheri Sicard modeling a Peter McWilliams T-ShirtTHIS WEEK: Stop the Feds from Silencing Robert Platshorn and The Silver Tour; Gary Johnson Tries to Inject Marijuana Legalization Into Presidential Debate; Lawmakers Introduce Bill to Protect Patients from Feds; Marijuana Possible Osteoporosis Cure; Marijuana Fights Muscle Stiffness in MS Patients; Advocates Decry Los Angeles Dispensary Ban; Travel Guru Rick Steves Funds Legalization Initiative; Marijuana Activists Protest Obama’s Oakland Visit; Growing Evidence of Citizen Resistance to Enforcing Marijuana Laws and more.

Note: This week’s photos show me modeling my official Peter McWilliams T-Shirt. You can get one too and support the work and legacy of this legendary activist.  Find out more my contacting the fine folks at PeterMcWilliams.org.

 MEDICAL

Marijuana Fights Muscle Stiffness in MS Patients — Marijuana extracts, taken orally, significant reduce muscle stiffness, pain and spasticity in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), according to new clinical trial data published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry.

Marijuana Possible Osteoporosis Cure — Although research is not conclusive, some studies shows that medical marijuana could be a potential solution for those suffering from osteoporosis.  Some research found that, while excessive cannabis use may reduce bone strength in younger individuals, using the plant could protect against osteoporosis later in life by activating a naturally occurring molecule (cannabinoid receptor, or CB1) in the body that is key to osteoporosis development.

POLITICS/LEGAL

Parole Board Prohibits Activist from Speaking About Cannabis— You’d think that Robert Platshorn, the former 1970s marijuana smuggler who became, after almost 30 years in the federal pen, the longest-serving cannabis prisoner in United States history, had already paid his debt to society.  Platshorn, author of Black Tuna Diaries and whose story is told in the documentary Square Grouper, now promotes the legalization of medical marijuana, aiming his message at senior citizens with The Silver Tour.  Platshorn’s new parole officer, Scott Kirsche, on Wednesday afternoon phoned the Black Tuna and gave him notice that the recently granted permission to travel to Chicago to address the American Bar Association has been rescinded on orders of his superiors, Reginald Michael and Frank Smith.

Cannabis Cheri Sicard modeling a Peter McWilliams T-shirtGary Johnson Tries to Inject Marijuana Legalization Into Presidential Debate — Gary Johnson isn’t the first Libertarian Party nominee to favor legalizing marijuana. But he is the first to do so in a country where more people agree with his position on the subject than the positions of the Republican or Democratic candidate.

Lawmakers Introduce Bill to Protect Patients from Feds — A bipartisan group of House lawmakers introduced a bill this week designed to create enhanced legal protections for valid medical marijuana patients prosecuted due to conflicting state and federal laws regarding the legality of the substance.

Advocates Decry Los Angeles Dispensary Ban — After more than four years of attempting to craft a medical marijuana dispensary ordinance, despite dozens of regulatory examples across California, the Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously today to ban the facilities outright. The ban was passed despite more than ten thousand letters sent by medical marijuana patients and their supporters over the past few weeks urging the council to adopt sensible regulations rather than a complete ban. Advocates expressed outrage at this vote and have vowed to seek a referendum to reverse the new law.

Marijuana Activists Protest Obama’s Oakland Visit — A  few hundred cannabis supporters and activists gathered on the steps of Oakland’s City Hall to show support for Harborside Health Center and to protest President Obama’s early evening fundraiser at the picturesque Fox Theater last week.

Growing Evidence of Citizen Resistance to Enforcing Marijuana Laws — It is becoming increasingly more difficult to seat a jury willing to convict on marijuana charges.

Travel Guru Rick Steves Funds Legalization Initiative — Travel guru Rick Steves (left) has pitched in $350,000 to help legalize marijuana in Washington State. Initiative 502 would tax and regulate cannabis if passed by voters in November.

TAKE ACTION OPPORTUNITIES

Stop the Feds from Silencing Robert Platshorn and The Silver Tour  — It’s time to push back and expose the bureaucrats that are now moving behind the scenes to silence cannabis activists like The Silver Tour’s Robert Platshorn all over the country. They are acting as a secret army, in anticipation of the upcoming spate of pro cannabis ballot initiatives. There are serious First Amendment rights at stake, not to mention their intent to kill the tremendous public momentum for ending cannabis prohibition. This article gives easy ways YOU can help stop this.

Support the Truth in Trials Act — A bipartisan coalition of lawmakers has reintroduced legislation that aims to protect state-authorized medical marijuana patients and their providers from federal prosecution.  House Bill 6134, The Truth in Trials Act, provides an affirmative defense in federal court for defendants whose actions were in compliance with the medical marijuana laws of their state.  Seventeen states — Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington — have enacted laws protecting medical marijuana patients and their providers from state prosecution. Yet in all of these states, patients and providers still face the risk of federal sanction — even if their activities are fully compliant with state law.  Passage of the Truth in Trials Act would codify legal protections for defendants caught between state and federal laws, ensuring that they can cite state law as a legal defense in federal trials. Sign this petition.  PLEASE!

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