Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Measure 33
Onto more interesting things to vote on. The title of this measure is: Amends Medical Marijuana Act. Requires marijuana dispensaries for supplying patients/caregivers; raises patient possession limit.
Here’s the Sec of State website explanation of the measure.

According to the explanation, the measure would create a licensing program for distributing pot for patients. You apparently would still be able to distribute to less than 10 patients without a license. The licensed distributors would be subject to lots of auditing, tracking, inspections and such. It also increases the amount that patients can possess at one time. They may possess as much as a pound of cannabis or, if they only harvest once a year, as much as 6 pounds. One other thing it does is add to the list of professionals who can prescribe it, including naturopaths and registered nurses.
This is interesting: “The measure requires a program for indigent patients to receive medical marijuana at no cost from licensed dispensaries.” What’s that about? Free pot?

Here’s a site that is encouraging a yes vote on OregonVotes, who argue that patients who require cannabis and cannot grow it on their own often have a hard time finding legal sources.

Here’s an article displaying the major players involved pro and con. The major objection seems to be the amount that patients can have at any one time. I have to admit 6 pounds is a LOT of pot. I don’t think most folks can understand just what that looks like, since it’s a plant, and the weight of a large amount is negligible. I remember a guy in college who, along with a buddy, bought a pound for the school year and it took them MANY months to smoke the stuff.
Now having said that, I don’t know how often patients need to take it, but if the DAs are correct and six pounds equals one joint every hour for the whole year, I think that is indeed excessive.

Here’s a message from a patient and user under the current system in favor of the new measure.

The ACLU is supporting the measure. We should not be surprised at this, as the ACLU is noted for its support of decriminalization of Cannabis.

The Oregon Medical Association urges a NO vote.

The Pacific Green Party endorses it. Also no surprise.

And, although I can’t find references on the Oregon Republican Party site, I’m sure they are against it.
The Democratic Party of Oregon website indicates that the process of ballot measure endorsements is still in process. Their web site, by the way, is far better than the Republican site. Not as pretty, but very functional and full of information.

Another story, here in Willamette Week, where the original poster girl for the first measure, Stormy Ray, is against this current measure, but not for the reasons you would think. She is against the selling of cannabis and is happy with the “cooperative, cash free system that empowers the sick.”

The McMinnville News-Register is against it.

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