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New York City

Will New Amsterdam be the new Amsterdam?

Posted on August 14th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

New York cannabisCannabis is a $1.65 billion industry in New York City, according to a report released Aug. 14 by comptroller and mayoral hopeful John Liu, with the potential to become a $1.7 billion industry if it were made legal in the Big Apple. The report is the first official estimate of the city's cannabis market, and the first study to consider the idea of legalization at the municipal level in the nation's biggest city.

Judge rules NYPD 'stop-and-frisk' policy unconstitutional

Posted on August 12th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , .

New York CityA judge for the US District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled Aug. 12 that the New York Police Department (NYPD) stop-and-frisk policy violates the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments. Over the past decade, the city has conducted about 5 million stop-and-frisks, with more than 80% of those targeted Black or Latino. Judge Shira Scheindlin noted: "A lot of people are being frisked or searched on suspicion of having a gun and nobody has a gun. Only 0.14 percent of stops have led to police finding guns. So the point is suspicion turns out to be wrong in most cases." Scheindlin said she was not putting an end to the policy, but would name an independent monitor to help develop reforms to the practice. She also ordered that officers test out body-worn cameras in precincts where most stops occurred. 

Mexican Peace Caravan Occupies Wall Street

Posted on September 10th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

caravanMexican poet and author Javier Sicilia spoke on the steps of New York’s Federal Hall, across Wall Street from the Stock Exchange, in a Sept. 7 rally by the Caravan for Peace With Justice and Dignity that culminated a tour of 27 US cities. About 20 of the caravan's 120 members have lost children, siblings or other relatives to the drug war, which Sicilia denounces as "false," "ignoble," and, above all, "lost." The caravaneros joined with local supporters in New York City to oppose the "war on drugs," and point to Wall Street's role in laundering narco-profits—while low-level traffickers, personal users and just ordinary people caught in the cross-fire pay with their lives and freedom both sides of the US-Mexico border. (World War 4 Report, Sept. 10)

Judge Gustin Reichbach, medical cannabis advocate, dead at 65

Posted on July 18th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

ReichbachBrooklyn judge Gustin Reichbach, who won notoriety two months ago when he wrote an op-ed for the New York Times expressing his support for medical marijuana, died July 14 after a nearly three-year struggle with pancreatic cancer. In his May 16 op-ed, he wrote: "My survival has demanded an enormous price, including months of chemotherapy, radiation hell and brutal surgery... Inhaled marijuana is the only medicine that gives me some relief from nausea, stimulates my appetite, and makes it easier to fall asleep." 

Three books reveal underground press roots of counterculture

Posted on July 4th, 2012 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , .

FugThree recent books each provide a prism on the matrix of the American counterculture in the 1960s underground press movement—with a particular focus on the germinal scene on New York's Lower East Side. Following the interlocking characters that passed through such institutions as the East Village Other bi-weekly and affiliated Underground Press Syndicate opens a window on a moment whose influence and significance have never received the recognition that the parallel scene across the continent in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury won.

Steve Ben Israel, NYC counter-culture legend, dead at 74

Posted on June 5th, 2012 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , .

Steve Ben Israel, legendary thespian, veteran of the ground-breaking Living Theatre troupe, and pioneer of what he called "performance life" (as opposed to performance art), died June 4 of lung cancer at his home in New York's Greenwich Village. He was 74.

New York: Bloomberg endorses Cuomo plan to decriminalize pot in "public view"

Posted on June 5th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

New York cannabisNew York's Gov. Andrew Cuomo held an Albany press conference June 4 to announce that he will ask state lawmakers to make possession of cannabis "in public view" a violation—essentially, the same as simple possession of under an ounce in the Empire State. Having the herb "in public view" is currently a misdemeanor, which is exploited by New York City police to rack up arrests in so-called "stop-and-frisks" by spooking citizens into displaying their stash—an illegal practice that has been the focus of a recent controversy. Cuomo's proposal immediately won the support of Mayor Michael Bloomberg, his top prosecutors and—amazingly—the New York Police Department.

Class-action suit approved in NYPD stop-and-frisks

Posted on May 17th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

New York CityFederal Judge Shira A. Scheindlin on May 16 approved a class-action lawsuit challenging the New York Police Department's stop-and-frisk tactics, saying she was disturbed by the city's "deeply troubling apathy towards New Yorkers' most fundamental constitutional rights." The decision provides potential legal recourse for hundreds of thousands have been caught up in the department's aggressive stop-and-frisk practice, which has resulted in hundreds of illegal cannabis arrests and critics say unjustly targets Blacks and Latinos.

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