I'M A CONSTITUTIONALIST MORE THAN A MARIJUANA CONSUMER!
Why I'm voting YES on Ohio's Issue 2 and NO on Issue 3!
November 1, 2015
It's the worst Divide and Conquer I've ever seen! The stakes are higher than ever! Ohio's fight to legalize marijuana has gotten so heated that we even made it in Rolling Stone: who called Responsible Ohio Carpetbaggers! I can't tell you how much this situation hurts my heart, that after almost 30 years of dedicating my life to cannabis law reform starting with getting arrested in 1988 for providing medicine, joining Gatewood Galbraith's Kentucky governor's race in 1990 and creating my own media with HempRock Radio and TV in 1992, I and others have been put in a political position to vote against what we believe in! It's for the very reason that DPA's Ethen Nadelmann pointed out at the end of his opinion piece on CNN.com.
'Ohio's initiative foreshadows what lies ahead, not in 2016 but years thereafter. That's a wonderful development insofar as it means that legal profit seekers will play a leading role in ending the pervasive and racially disproportionate arrests, illegal markets and many other harms of marijuana prohibition. But legislators, citizens and advocates for civil rights and liberties as well as public health and equitable economic development will need to do all we can to ensure that post-prohibition policies reflect the values that have driven marijuana reform until now.' Ethen Nadelmann
This is the crux if our issue...do we let the already rich profit-seekers push the rest of the citizenry out of their way by hijacking our Constitution or do we stand up for what's right for all of Ohio and America's citizens? As much as I believe in marijuana law reform, it's the latter that's most important in the bigger picture and in the future of Ohio and our Country.
Like all political campaigns, Irresponsible Ohio, as High Times' Jon Gettman calls them in his High Times opinion piece, those with all the money pay people to carry their message especially now with social media. People who've only recently created Facebook pages have started the drum, that even some of our local and national activists are beating, that we are 'prohibitionists'! We are being verbally attacked including being called traitors to marijuana! I say to that, anyone who supports Issue 3, whether in Ohio or outside of who this will not even effect, are the traitors to our Constitution.
Whether the U.S. or our Ohio Constitution, these laws were not written so a small CABAL can write their own exclusive business plan that would outlaw their competition, into a State's Constitution that is meant for all the citizens of that state! As Jack Herer exposed to us, we've seen this before haven't we? Seventy years ago, a small CABAL conned our Country into outlawing our natural plant that would take a chunk out of their bottom line! This is no different! If Issue 3 passes, will it take another 70 years to undo their damage? Is a little marijuana worth all that?
You can have that now with Ohio's Decrim laws. Possession or growing of under 100 grams (3.5 ounces) of marihuana is a $150.00 minor misdemeanor citation with no arrest or jail time. And because of their Decrim law that allows up to an ounce, the recent rulings in Massachusetts in 2011 and last year, finding that the odor of burned marijuana alone does not provide grounds for police to order occupants to exit a car, and that the smell of burned or unburned marijuana does not justify searching a vehicle without a warrant, gives Ohio attorneys a major weapon in court if you ever have an issue and may have an even bigger ripple effect for our law enforcement.
Bernie Sanders says as President he wants to end the federal governments Schedule I for marijuana! Whether you like the Bernman or not, if he wins and does what he says, what then will Ohio do if Issue 3 passes this Tuesday? Hell, even Donald Trump now says marijuana should be legal. We will be stuck with what we choose now. Bernman tells Charlie Rose we must stop oligarchies and corporate greed as well!
There are those that claim, pass it now and change it later. Sure, it's easy if you have millions of dollars to spend! That's why we haven't changed it here so far. Ian James is right about one thing, the nationals have left Ohio dangling in the wind so much that it was easy for him to come in, learn everything we've done, our arguments for legalization and then use it against us. He claims this is about social justice especially for African Americans who are effected most by the Drug War...yet I ask where he was when I and others led the fight against Cincinnati's City Council 5 year Ordinance that had an arrest record of over 90% black men? Where were Oscar Robertson and Frostee Rucker then?
But it's not so easy to amend our Constitution...the citizens can amend if they gather enough voter signatures to put an issue on the ballot, like RO, and the legislators can write it, and if they get a 60% vote in each the House and the Senate for a "Joint" Resolution, can place the issue on the ballot for voters to decide. This is how Issue 2 got placed on this years ballot.
If Issue 3 passes we will have to either lobby our legislators again to write a new amendment for the ballot that would undo the monopoly, which as some are screaming Issue 3 isn't because they are not just one...which is wrong... 1. Exclusive control by one group of the means of producing or selling a commodity or service...Responsible Ohio is 'one group of investors who excluded all others but their own investors'! Or we, the citizens will have to write another amendment ourselves to undo the damage, by first getting 1000 voter signatures, then certified by the state to go get the over 300,000 voter signatures, then get certified by the state again to get placed on the ballot. If Issue 3 passes, I ask you, where the hell are 'we the people' going to get the millions it takes to place an issue on our ballot after Responsible Ohio rakes in billions to fight us from their exclusive control of marijuana, if they win? Will the nationals who've not helped us yet come to our rescue?
As for what Issue 3 will do for patients? Unless you have an already established relationship with your primary care doctor, you won't get the recommendation! They've written it so we can't go find a doctor if we don't already have one. They also left out whether another medical state's recommendation is transferable! So I ask you what you will do if you'd qualify but your current, if you have one, doctor refuses to give you one? You'll be stuck buying their recreational marijuana or if your lucky enough to have a room in your house for the locked grow room and you are willing to give up your 4th Amendment Rights by buying their $50 a yr license..and you know how to grow great marijuana and you're not too sick to maintain it. And to those that say the cops won't use the money RO marijuana taxes will gift them with, against those who break Responsible Ohio's new laws, think again! Ask the Duval family in Michigan where medical marijuana is legal! .huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/28/jerry-duval-medical-marijuana
And the 4 plants the license allows is only per household! Do they really think 4 plants and 8 ounces is enough and then what if more than one patient lives in the house? What if they only want to use marijuana extracts and not smoke raw marijuana? And although I have a hard time growing tomatoes, I know it takes a lot more than 4 plants to make enough trim to make enough oil to make it even worth the electricity it'll take to grow anything! What if they also want to grow it so they can juice it or put it in smoothies? Issue 3's language is just too vague to even mean anything worthwhile. Just empty promises we'll be stuck with!
The new slight of hand trick is to promise to allow craft growers to rent a grow spot from one of 4 sites. Ohio's own extraction equipment company, Apeks says, "At least 4 of the MGCE sites have announced they will allow up to 100 Artisan grows on the constitutionally protected MGCE sites which increases the licensing, regulation and enforcement burden for the Marijuana Control Commission (MCC) from 10 to 400.". They also have an issue with most of RO investors being secret...and they are right! How do we know they aren't Mexican drug cartels? Hell, I say, how do we know they aren't Monsanto? Either way, if any craft grower falls for this, they open themselves up to theft of their crafted cannabis genetics! Even if cannabis seeds should be open for all, if Monsanto gets involved, they'll be doing the same thing with cannabis seeds as they do with food crop seeds!
Even the Ohio Farm Bureau opposes Issue 3!
And if there are only 4 sites around the state, these craft growers may have to drive over 100 miles everyday to take care of their grow. So now, besides all the electricity pulling energy off the grid, more gas will be burned just to get to the sites! The next question is, who can the craft grower sell their product to? First to RO for a cheaper rate than if they opened their own shop to sell their own brand amongst the other brands? Because this is not in the language of Issue 3, we just don't know! More empty promises to hook the small grower!
And that's also one of the problems we keep running into...being stonewalled! Everywhere they claim Ian will be answering questions, either he is a no-show or more often than not, they refuse to answer or even worse, try to keep out those of us asking the questions! I and others keep wondering...is this how they will treat our patients?
I'm sure I'll piss off a lot of you for asking parents to not fall for this ruse but if it's the CBD oil that helps your child, you can already buy that legally. CBD oil. (this is not an endorsement for this brand!) I'm also asking you to not throw your child out with our Constitution. Have patience and instead, help us fight for real reform that doesn't take away your childs Constitutional rights in the future! As Benjamin Franklin said: "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."
Some of us have issues with the fact that the lawyers, Chris Stock and his law partner who wrote Issue 3's language have never even smoked marijuana. Maybe this is why they don't know what a marijuana patient really needs. I would never debate the fact that marijuana can help with heroin addiction, but if Chris Stock, who says he wanted to do Issue 3 because his brother died of a heroin overdose really wants to help heroin addicts, he needs to write a Constitutional Amendment for RO's investors to have exclusive rights to invest in, investigate and produce Ibogaine. Also a Schedule I drug, it's known to be a great medicine to stop heroin addiction. I urge Chris to look into Ibogaine and leave cannabis to those who know what it is.
LAW & ORDER Episode about Ibogaine.
Issue 3 supporters claim that dealers oppose 3 because shops will put them out of business. I hear most dealers think they can undercut shops even easier than they are in Colorado where more people get to grow for retail. They say they will have more varieties because they can sell imports and underground products and shops can only sell RO products. They also say they oppose 3 because it cut them out of their Right to finally be legit! But if some of the predictions of the 10 sites not being able to keep up with demand, they will still be taking care of peoples needs instead of working in a shop for minimum wage. They say they refuse to give into the Devil pot!
Another argument is that if we don't pass Issue 3 now, Ohio will never get legalization on the ballot again! I say that's ridiculous first because RO investors already say they are coming back next year if 3 fails but most important is now that people finally see the need, and that's the one good thing that RO has done for our movement, you can bet there will be other initiatives next year. We can also look to Oregon where their legalization bill failed when Washington and Colorado passed, who then came back with help from DPA, got it passed and now they are legal. And although it isn't as good as the one that failed, it's not a Constitutional Amendment and can be changed for the better much easier than an Amendment. When California failed in 2012, it didn't hurt national legalization and now they are coming back with a new bill in 2016. I hope the same thing happens here..that our famous Athens County growers vote down this bill like the Emerald Triangle did with Prop 19 so we can come back stronger! That's where long-time activist and attorney Don Wirtshafter lives who like Jack Herer, helped bring hemp back to this country with The Ohio Hempery. He resigned from the Ohio Rights Group when it announced its support for Issue 3.
I have a new joke for the movement...'We've done our job of re-educating folks about the truth of marijuana so well, that I've gone from being a stupid stoner who only wants to get high and we must keep pot illegal cause we have to protect the children when I advocated for kids medicine since 1990...to, you're a damn prohibitionist who doesn't want to help the children with medicine!'. I say if Ian james and his cabal really wanted to help sick children and had wrote an amendment that would give them exclusive rights to open facilities to investigate what kids need for different illnesses and exclusive rights to grow and sell to the families but the rest of Ohioians who want to can get a share of the rest of the market, I doubt any of us would be fighting against them right now. They could have included veteran's as well if their greed wasn't what it is!
So I urge Ian James to set his ego aside and if 3 fails this year, come back next year and prove you really care about the kids and the veterans and craft a bill that proves you believe in an open society!
That urging is also for one of their investors, Frank Wood Jr who, if 3 passes, will own the Clermont County site. I've respected him most of my life for him creating probably the best original rock radio station ever, Cincinnati's WEBN and their yearly fireworks show here. It was WEBN that made me want to be in radio since I was a teen. We all loved their joke company, Brute Force Cybernetics, that made mostly joke products they'd advertise. Brute Force Cybernetics tagline was 'Create a need and then fill it!'. Cincinnati loves Frank so much that recently our Mayor (who, in 2006, voted to make any amout of pot an arrestable offense) appointed Frank Cincinnati's Commissioner of Fun. I just gota ask you Frank, has Commissioner of Fun gone to your head? Because I didn't realize the tagline meant, 'We create the need and YOU fill it!'. So I urge you, if 3 fails, to come back next year with a bill we can all support! Wouldn't that be more fun than the Divide and Conquer that Issue 3 has created! I can assure you the struggle and having to write this opinion piece has not been fun!
I understand why the nationals like Ethan Nadelmann think a win here will help further national legalization but most of us don't want to be the sacrificial lamb when we'd be the ones stuck with RO's legal cartel. And I think Ethan is wrong in his CNN piece that 'it's a modest risk at best that it would encourage the filing of similar measures around the country.' As they say...So goes Ohio! If it can be done here it will surely happen more. What makes anyone think that if some of RO's investors are not from Ohio, that they wouldn't go into other states and do the same thing? This is their practice run!
So I also urge Ethan and DPA not to leave us on our own anymore after this. Help Ohio pass good legislation next year! Help us show the rest of the Country how to do a bill that helps all of Ohioans and not just a select few.
To our Ohio Legislators...who say they crafted Issue 2 not because they oppose marijuana legalization but because our Constitution shouldn't be used by a group of investors to write their exclusive business plan that cuts out everyone else, into our State Constitution...I urge you to craft an Amendment that serves all issues of cannabis including but not limited to allowing our farmers to grow hemp for industrial purposes. I urge Ohio citizens to contact your Reps and tell them to write it.
Email the Senate and House.
Why I'm voting Yes on Issue 2! - (A 2nd Opinion by Sri Kavuru)
There is much confusion and misinformation/propaganda on what Issue 2 will do in the future. I'm not an attorney but it's a simple Amendment that basically says if in the future a group of investors write themselves an exclusive business plan that also sets up a special tax that will only apply to them and get it certified to go on a ballot for a vote, and the opinion of the ballot board, whose job is to write the question for the ballot voting sheet, is it sets up a monopoly, oligopoly or cartel, they shall write it as a 2 part question on the ballot.
Main body of the Amendment...
(2) If a constitutional amendment proposed by initiative petition is certified to appear on the ballot and, in the opinion of the Ohio ballot board, the amendment would conflict with division (B)(l) of this section, the board shall prescribe two separate questions to appear on the ballot. as follows:
(a) The first question shall be as follows:
"Shall the petitioner, in violation of division (B)(l) of Section le of Article II of the Ohio Constitution, be authorized to initiate a constitutional amendment that grants or creates a monopoly, oligopoly, or cartel, specifies or determines a tax rate, or confers a commercial interest. commercial right, or commercial license that is not available to other similarly situated persons?"
(b) The second question shall describe the proposed constitutional amendment.
(c) If both questions are approved or affirmed by a majority of the electors voting on them, then the constitutional amendment shall take effect. If only one question is approved or affirmed by a majority of the electors voting on it. then the constitutional amendment shall not take effect.
As the fearmongerers claim, it will not stop other marijuana or other initiatives..if they make the ballot written as a monopoly, it's only split into 2 parts...1st part asking yes or no on the monopoly clause and 2nd part asking should the Amendment pass. If part 1 and part 2 pass, the monopoly Amendment passes! If part 1 doesn't but part 2 does pass, it still fails.
And that is the only flaw. The best case scenerio would have been if part 1 doesn't pass but 2 does, the main part just passes. But it will be much easier to add that as a new Amendment than it will be to undo RO's cartel if 3 passes.
That's the 3rd part of Issue 2...and some of us thought it will effect future initiatives because it mentioned Schedule I drugs but it won't and can't even be misinterpreted! The first half only applies to this years election this Tuesday. The second half applies
only in the future if something on the ballot conflicts with (B)(1) and hasn't gone through the procedure of (B)(2) and split into the 2 part questions.
Part 3 language...
(3) If, at the general election held on November 3, 2015, the electors approve a proposed constitutional amendment that conflicts with division (B)(l) of this section with regard to the creation of a monopoly, oligopoly. or cartel for the sale, distribution, or other use of any federal Schedule I controlled substance, then notwithstanding any severability provision to the contrary, that entire proposed constitutional amendment shall not take effect. If, at any subsequent election, the electors approve a proposed constitutional amendment that was proposed by an initiative petition, that conflicts with division (B)(l) of this section, and that was not subject to the procedure described in division (B)(2) of this section, then notwithstanding any severability provision to the contrary, that entire proposed constitutional amendment shall not take effect.
And (C) gives the right to sue the State if Issue 2 effects 3 or anything else.
Part (C) language...
(C) The supreme court of Ohio shall have original, exclusive jurisdiction in any action that relates to this section.
This last section is where our legislators let our casinos know this new Amendment won't effect them!
Division (B)(l) of Section le of Article II of the Constitution of the State of Ohio, as amended by this proposal, does not apply to any provision of the Constitution of the State of Ohio in effect prior to the effective date of that amendment.
Ohioans...this is our legislators finally doing something right that will actually protect us now and in the future from those with the cash to buy our Constitution for themselves and their cabal so only they can be at the top of their business (pyramid) plan!
I support taxing and regulating cannabis in a reasonable way like Gatewood Galbraith did. I even support the notion of the Walmart of weed...but I don't support Walmart and Kmart getting together to write themselves an Amendment that gives them sole rights to make all the products all retailers sell. You'd say that's un-American wouldn't you? Gatewood would, too!
Ericka Buford, the single mom who played RO's mascot Buddie, says she was unfairly fired for raising concerns about on-the-job safety. She is so bummed about the way she was treated, she can’t even muster up much excitement for Issue 3. “Now I’m debating it because now I know how the people behind it work,” she said.
Don't be the 'stupid stoner' who only cares about getting high that Irresponsible Ohio has gambled millions of dollars on so only they get gifted an entire burgeoning industry! Ohio cannabis consumers, farmers and citizens deserve better!
SHOW THE COUNTRY OHIO WANTS AND CAN DO BETTER FOR OHIO!
VOTE THIS TUESDAY........YES ON ISSUE 2! NO ON ISSUE 3!
Lynne Wilson, the Happy Hemptress
aka Samantha Kinison!
November 1, 2015
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