Thursday May 23, 2013
Hemp Hemp Hooray! (I mean Cannabis)Dr. Phil Leveque Salem-News.com
Even New York is joining the club.
(MOLALLA, Ore.) - The title of this missive may be a bit confusing. Actually it comes from an advertisement for the New Seasons market June 6, 2012 which is featuring hemp and hemp recipes at their 12 stores. Hemp Hemp Hooray! was one of Jack Herer's favorite lines, and it is great to see it repeated so vivaciously.
Many other grocery chains do have hemp derived foods of various types, but this one jumped out at me.
My exhilaration also comes from a story in the NYT 6-5-12 with the headline, “NYC Mayor Bloomberg and the police endorse a plan to limit arrests for marijuana”.
This comes after the actual arrests of about 50,000 people per year in New York and more than 853,000 in the United States, mostly for simple possession, which must be putting a ferocious financial burden on the legal systems.
New York State Governor Cuomo framed the issue by noting, it is used by police in the “stop and frisk” practice in which mostly Latinos and blacks are stopped and told to “empty your pockets”. Many have minute residue from cannabis in their pockets.
Because Blacks and Latinos are most targeted, whites who also use marijuana are rarely included in the arrests. To Bloomberg and Cuomo this seems a matter of civil rights and freedom, which it is.
As one Brooklyn, NY Democrat assemblyman states, “It cannot be criminal behavior for one group of people (blacks) and socially acceptable behavior for another group of people (whites), where the dividing line is race.”
NYT Police commissioner Raymond Kelly has already stated since last September that police should not arrest people with small amounts in their pockets. Marijuana arrests have dropped by 25% since then.
This new plan should reduce the arrests markedly.
Mayor Bloomberg, addressing the state legislature, told them, “If you have problems with this, change the law.”
One Republican senator Martin Golden from Brooklyn, reflexly jumped at this new proposal questioning that it would send the wrong message to the young, and that five youths in his district had died from overdoses recently.
To clear this up --- none had died from marijuana.
He stated that 25 grams of marijuana, the allowable amount was “a lot of pot”. Well, maybe. It is less than an ounce (28 grams), and weighs less than a pack of cigarettes; that is usually about one week’s supply of cannabis. "A lot" is subjective.
HEMP HEMP HOORAY! YES, I KNOW, IT’S NOT MARIJUANA.
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More information on the history of Dr. Leveque can be found in his book, General Patton's Dogface Soldier of WWII about his own experiences "from a foxhole".
If you are a World War II history buff, you don't want to miss it.
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