Joseph Bresnyan, a 40-year-old father of four, was killed by a stoned driver while changing a flat tire along Interstate 80 near Sacramento on May 3. The other driver tested positive for THC, the active ingredient in marijuana. When pot shops start selling recreational marijuana next week, California will need to prepare for more drivers under the influence of pot. Californians, beware!! Continue reading California: Are you ready for the rise in traffic deaths?
By Roger Morgan, TBAC, California. firstname.lastname@example.org #stoppot2016
On the theory that a word to wise is sufficient, one should look at the reality of legalized pot in Oregon prior to assuming it is a good thing for California. Indoor marijuana grows, especially, would be a disaster.
California, with a population of 38 million reportedly has 50,000 mostly illegal outdoor cultivation sites. Oregon, with a population of only 4 million, had 47,000, even prior to legalizing pot for recreational use in 2014. Aside from the impact on humans from consuming this illicit, dangerous drug, the impact on the environment and local communities has been devastating.
Once pristine communities have been invaded with unsavory people who were attracted by the right to grow this illicit drug legally. Rural environments with once nice equestrian facilities, and gentlemen farms, have been invaded with pot plantations that smell of skunk so badly, people can’t open their windows. To protect from human and animal predators, pot plantations are surrounded with high walls with razor wire on top. Inside, they are guarded by pit bulls and armed guards.
Obviously, as is the case with California, the crop isn’t intended for the population of those who consume marijuana within the State. California, according to our State legislators, provides 60% of pot to the entire US market. Oregon is obviously not far behind.
Now, our own Lt Governor Gavin Newsom, backed by out-of-state billionaires, is leading the charge to legalize pot for recreational use in California. In reality, we already have de facto legalization. Anyone 18 or older can get a pot doctor’s recommendation for $20 and buy (and sell) all the pot they want. The intent from day one in 1996 when three out-of-state billionaires with George Soros at the helm, was just use “medical marijuana” as a red herring to give pot a good name as a first step toward full legalization. It has been a long patient plan, but combined with financial contributions to elected officials and the press, it is working.
The Newsom ballot initiative calls for anyone to have the ability to grow six plants for “personal use”. Lets look at what that could mean.
According to Shirley Morgan, Oregon’s premier anti-marijuana activist, “….. in Oregon marijuana plants can range from 10’ to 15’ in height depending on where and how they are grown. ….. According to the 2015 Privateer Holdings report, individual yields depend on many factors, such as plant density, nutrient availability, light availability and genetic pre-disposition. A HIDTA paper anecdotally reported yields in southern Oregon ranging from 6 to 20 lbs per plant with an average yields of 10 lbs of usable, dried, marijuana per plant, with a single harvest per year. ….. A U of Washington study on indoor cannabis production found that the typical yield from a single plant grown indoors is about one ounce, but the indoor grow site can expect four harvests per year.” They report higher yields for indoor and outdoor grows are not uncommon, as one would assume from the large indoor grow pictured.
So what would 6 indoor marijuana plants per household in California mean?
Lets just conservatively say one lb of produce per plant. There are an estimated 1,000 joints per pound, so six plants would produce 6,000 joints. But, as evidenced in the previous paragraph, it is possible to get 10 lbs per plant, or 60,000 joints …. with a single harvest. Four harvests a year are possible indoors. As in Oregon, it is marketed to out-of-state and underage markets. It’s not about medicine. Its all about money, with no regard for people or the planet.
Another reality is that marijuana isn’t just measured in joints any longer. Extracting the THC through butane to produce hash oil (BTO) has caused new dangers. Butane is so volatile even static electricity can cause a major explosion. There were 143 such explosions in California in 2014, and 32 deaths. Many of those who survived ended up on burn centers for 2 to 3 months getting skin grafts for deep seated burns.
Because the wax and oils sell for more money, many if not most indoor and outdoor growers have gravitated to this dangerous practice. If the explosions don’t occur, the fact that marijuana and money exist in one location makes them a magnet for crime.
The list of deleterious impacts on humans is endless, especially anyone under age 25 whose brains can be permanently damaged. But the list goes on, including psychotic breaks, mental illness, addiction, birth defects, traffic fatalities, et al. Altered minds lead to more crime, more academic failure, and more use of drugs that are killing 129 Americans everyday just of overdose.
The burden of public health and safety has fallen on local enforcement and private citizens. It is impossible to control. There is no amount of tax revenues that will offset the social costs, or compensate for the painful impact of even one young person losing their life, or succumbing to the life long disease of mental illness.
If we don’t protect our environment and youth, they have no future. Nor do we as a nation.
Vote No For Any Proliferation Of Marijuana
Roger Morgan is the founder of StopPot2016.com.
Marijuana Industry To Come Clean About Reliance on Highly Potent Products In Massachusetts
Tomorrow the Supreme Judicial Court in Massachusetts will hear a case to dismiss the petition to legalize commercial marijuana. Hensley vs. Attorney General was filed about five weeks ago. The suit alleges voters have not been told that high concentrations of THC could be added to food or beverages, such as candy, cookies or soda, under this proposal. Nor were voters told that the question would allow for the sale of genetically modified forms of marijuana with THC concentrations of 60 percent or higher. The Bellotti Law Group filed the suit on behalf of 59 voters.l
The Campaign for a Safe and Healthy Massachusetts is not a party to the suit, but the campaign believes that legal challenge raises important issues, especially the high THC levels of today’s marijuana products. The Campaign for a Safe and Healthy Massachusetts reiterated its call on the marijuana industry to discuss the fact that it will rely on highly potent products in Massachusetts.
One Marijuana Industry representative in Colorado admitted that efforts to cap THC levels at a rate above what the Dutch government has moved to classify as a prohibited hard drug would “gut the industry” in that state.
Statement from Nick Bayer, campaign manager for a Campaign for a Safe and Healthy Massachusetts:
“As this case is heard before the SJC, we believe the Marijuana Industry should acknowledge what we all know, that it will need to rely on highly potent products in Massachusetts to make a profit. This ballot question would open the door to the selling of a drug that is 400% more potent than the marijuana of even a generation ago, and edible products that have no restrictions placed on THC levels. People deserve to know what they are voting on, and this more powerful drug will have a great impact on families and young people.”
Some additional facts include:
Today’s commercial marijuana industry is producing and pushing products with average THC (the psychoactive element which creates the high) levels multiple times higher than found in the 1970s—frequently at or above the 15% THC level that the Dutch government has moved to classify as a prohibited “hard drug.”
Edible products, which the ballot measure specifically authorizes, make up about half the marijuana market in Colorado and would likely do the same here. Edibles use extracts with THC content that can rise as high as 90%.
In a recent interview, the head of Colorado’s marijuana trade association told a news outlet that an effort in his state to cap THC levels at 16% “literally would gut” his industry. Marijuana Business Daily quoted Mike Elliot, executive director of The Marijuana Industry Group, as saying the proposed THC cap would “would probably ban all the concentrates and most of the edibles and most of the flowers that people grow, too. Most of the flower that our industry is growing is above 16% THC.”
A bi-partisan group of politicians is leading the charge against legalization in Massachusetts, including Governor Charlie Baker, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, and Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo. An impressive group of school superintendents and other civic organizations have already spoken out against legalization. It’s time that similar leadership form in California.
Public Safety at Risk without Protection Against Stoned Drivers
Once again, public safety has been forced into the back seat by those who profit from marijuana sales with the help of the California legislators they influence.
The Assembly Appropriations Committee sidelined a measure (AB 2740) by Assemblymen Evan Low (D-Campbell) and Tom Lackey (R-Palmdale) that would have made it a crime for a person who has 5 nanograms/ml or more of THC, the psycho-active ingredient in pot, in their blood to drive a vehicle. The Senate Appropriations Committee also killed a measure (SB 1462) by Senator Bob Huff (R-San Dimas) that would have allowed law enforcement officers to use oral swab tests to determine if more costly blood tests should be performed.
Legalizing pot is on the ballot in November, but the legislature is refusing to protect California citizens. Five months after Colorado legalized and allowed commercial marijuana stores, a stoned driver critically injured Colorado High School teacher Keri Phillips Headley. She is now an avid opponent of marijuana legalization.
“To say we don’t have enough information to determine impairment is ludicrous. Why do we continue to allow back door legalization of marijuana with so-called “medical marijuana” in this state without even setting a safe level of use or warning people not to drive under the influence?” asks Scott Chipman, co-chairman of Citizens Against the Legalization of Marijuana (CALM)
“Drugged driving and particularly marijuana-impaired driving are serious and growing problems in California,” Chipman explains. “In my own community of San Diego, we have had 2 people killed and one permanently injured by marijuana- impaired drivers in just the last two months.”
“Nevada has had a per se limit of 2 nanograms since 1999 and their jails are NOT filled with marijuana drivers,” says Phillip Drum, Pharm. D. and whose sister was killed by a marijuana-impaired driver in Seattle, Washington in 2012. “According to national driving fatality records, there have been over 1551 marijuana driving deaths in California from 2010 – 2014. This is the profits of “BIG Marijuana” being more important than the lives of Californians from the damages this hallucinogen causes on the roadways on a daily basis across our nation.”
Carla Lowe, CALM founder said: “Shame on those legislators that allow themselves to be influenced, putting the interests of drug dealers and illicit drug users before the need for safe roads and travel in California! Drugged driving and the associated fatalities have skyrocketed in Washington and Colorado with 33% of DUIs testing positive for marijuana. Yet in California we don’t even get the appropriate blood tests performed to track the problem, let alone the proper public safety policies.” (It should be noted that the threshhold for impairment in Washington and Colorado are both at 5 nanograms per millileter of blood. If the limit were as low as Nevada, there would be fewer accidents.)
We call on all Californians to reject legalization of marijuana and demand policies that protect all of us from drug impaired drivers, drug dealers and users.