MN NORML rallies at the capitol for pot reform

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Rallying at the capitol
Demonstrators descended on the state capitol rotunda Wednesday thrusting fists and signs into the air with chants of "yes, we cannabis!"

For two hours, the hallways echoed with the voices of cops, writers, pols, and lawyers invited by Minnesota NORML, which lobbies for marijuana reform. They rubbed elbows with both jean jackets and blazers, showing the disparate makeup of a group that is often typecast and dismissed as burnouts.

See also:
When will medical marijuana be legal in Minnesota?


"This movement is about people who like drugs, people who hate drugs, and people who just don't give a damn about drugs," says Neill Franklin, a former narcotics officer, from the podium. "It's about everyone who is concerned about cannabis prohibition in the United States today."

In the crowd, Grassroots Party founder Oliver Steinberg smiles when asked about how pot reform has gone mainstream. He attended his first demonstration back in the early 90s with some of the same people who showed up here.

"The only difference now are those cameras," he says, pointing to the TV crews.

Yes, there's more exposure, but rallies like this one run the risk of further conflating the issues of medical and recreational marijuana, thereby playing into the hands of opponents. Just the other day, when he testified against the medical bill, Minnesota public health commissioner Ed Ehlinger quoted Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper as saying,
I don't tell other governors what to do, but when they asked me, I said, 'If I was in your shoes, I would wait a couple of years and see whether there are unintended consequences, from what is admittedly a well-intentioned law.
The problem: Hickenlooper went on record years ago supporting medical marijuana. His words of caution came from a New York Times article about how Democratic governors were hesitant to legalize marijuana for recreational use. Ehlinger failed to mention both of these points.

We asked his office about it and got a reply via email: "The Governor's [Hickenlooper's] observation about the merits of learning lessons good and bad from other states can easily apply to policies that address medical marijuana just as much as policies addressing recreational marijuana."


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22 comments
Terese Farr
Terese Farr

WE Vote..and there's ALOT of us.....WE also Re-Elect....or NOT!

Kelly McNutt
Kelly McNutt

Just as long as there are no Sunday sales, you know...

_Joe_
_Joe_

This is going to happen.  Can we, just for once, skip all the drama and just cut to the chase?


There are zero valid arguments against legal recreational pot.  If we are going to accept alcohol and tobacco into societal norms, then this cannot be excluded.


The only momentum behind keeping it illegal is law-enforcement making money off it, private prisons making money off it, and alcohol and tobacco lobbies worried about it cutting into their profits. 


SeniorCitizen
SeniorCitizen

@digitalprotocol @_Joe_ As a senior citizen, I feel compelled to answer this.

Many "old" people support this.  We were teenagers during the days of Jefferson Airplane, Greatful Dead, and much more.  So read up on it sonny boy ;)

The "problem" with old folks is they have learned from many years of government oppression to keep a low profile.  But trust me, we are all around you, and no, we are not "hippies."  If you went to college "back in the old days" you have fond memories of rolling joints while sharing a pizza and giggles with good friends was you traveled with the "Moody Blues."


An extremely old senior - one who as a kid loved booze, cigarettes, Elvis, and muscle cars, is another story.  But most of them are in nursing homes or pushing up daisies by now.    

_Joe_
_Joe_

@digitalprotocol

1. Old people are coming around because young people become new old people and the old old people die off.

2. The religious argument is just confusion.  In the orginal un-translated version of the bible, Jesus is quoted as saying,

"Take and eat, for this is my body.  Take and drink, for this is my blood.  Now get a hit of this shit.  I call it The Holy Ghost.  Shit's legit, yo."


Then they all got the munchies and mowed down an entire table full of food.

_Joe_
_Joe_

@digitalprotocol

Fine.  I'll bite.  You're a colossal idiot, but I'm drunk and in the mood for entertainment.

1. There's nothing mysterious about a black box.  It's a data recorder that, once retrieved, can be plugged in and easily read to acquire data recorded during whatever period it was designed to record.  You're thinking of Pandora's Box - which is something completely different.  It would be relevant if it made even an iota of sense in this situation, but it does not.  (Google it.  I don't have the time or inclination to explain it to you.)


2. I don't need to come up with a solution.  We already have a system in place with numerous laws and contingencies for handling the situation.  We have a criminal justice system that, flawed as it is, is exactly how these prisoners should be dealt with.  Charge them with a crime and give them a trial with fair representation.  None of this indefinite incarceration bullshit.  If a prosecutor cannot come up with grounds for a case, then hell yes, they should be released.  The current system of "We know you did something, but can't prove it" is bullshit.  If you can't prove it, you can't know it.


I am deeply disappointed in Barack Obama in regards to Guantanamo Bay prisoners. And Net Neutrality.  But you can't deny that his healthcare initiatives are bang on.  But I digress...


As @doggone so aptly pointed out, we're either a nation governed by laws - or we're not.  And I don't recall anywhere in the Declaration of Independence or the US Constitution the specifies that the rights we hold so dear apply only to US citizens.


So it's not complicated at all.  Apply our nations criminal justice code to these prisoners.  Otherwise everything we stand for as a nation is just smoke and mirrors.  We have to fight for the rights of these people as if they were our own.  Otherwise it will be that much easier to take those rights from US as well.


digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

@_Joe_ oh the Guantanamo thing...thats a black box


what is your solution? put them up in Burnsville to assimilate?

kurt124
kurt124 topcommenter

@_Joe_ @SeniorCitizenDon't often agree with Joe, but he is correct about DP.   DP has no Job, life, or family so give him a little wiggle room for that.   Nonetheless DP will be stoned full-time until he is old. 

_Joe_
_Joe_

@SeniorCitizen

Don't mind DP.  He's just a classic troll that will argue any position against anyone for any reason.  The best is when you get him arguing against positions he's held in the past.

digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

@SeniorCitizen it is your age group that is blocking the markets, protecting the honeypot, barring innovation and perpetuating inequality. 


your demographic has "used up" almost all of the american dream


go to sleep

SeniorCitizen
SeniorCitizen

@digitalprotocol @SeniorCitizen

Curious.  College was almost 40 years ago now.  So the last 40 years was spent in "the real world."  Your other comments are thoroughly loaded for aggressive argument.  I've know folks like you when I was young.  I'd say a fair number of them didn't have a change of personality as they got old, and are probably who you are thinking of.  Look in the mirror and consider what kind of person you will be in the future. 



digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

@SeniorCitizen  thats college...not the real world


watch and see who the oppressors are, they are the boomers


so greedy and self serving

_Joe_
_Joe_

@SeniorCitizen  

I had considered adding this as well as I know many "old people" in support of legalization.  However, DP's comment seems to specifically address those that are against legalization, so I elected to reply using the same assumed demographic.

digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

@_Joe_  the old and stubborn will be around for another 30-40 years, they have the power

coredog07
coredog07

Judas betrayed Jesus for Caponing the blunt.

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