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Bill Weinberg's blog

New Zealand moves toward medical marijuana —and legalization

Posted on June 9th, 2018 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , .

OceaniaThe government of New Zealand has announced that it plans to hold a referendum on cannabis legalization, possibly as early as next year. A medical marijuana bill is already pending in the country's parliament. But it has taken generations of activist effort by Kiwis to bring Aotearoa (by the country's indigenous Maori name) to this point. Cannabis Now speaks with some of the leaders who made it happen.

Ecological tolls of growing cannabis —both legal and illegal

cannabisA big multi-agency "reclamation" effort on national forest lands in the Emerald Triangle points again to the serious environmental impacts of outlaw cannabis cultivation. Will this be the last gasp of this sort of thing now that California has legalized?

Cannabis and highway carnage: hard truths

Posted on May 18th, 2018 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , .

trafficA deadly five-car pile-up on a Bay Area freeway brings into sharp focus the questions around cannabis use and road safety. Media exploitation of such carnage as propaganda against legalization, however, is missing some critical points.

Racial justice themes highlighted at NYC Cannabis Parade

Posted on May 7th, 2018 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , .

Cannabis marchNew York City's Cannabis Parade, flagship entry in the Global Marijuana March movement and a counterculture event dating back to the early 1970s, this year actually drew mainstream politicians and candidates. Nearly all struck themes of racial justice, emphasizing that a push for legalization in the Empire State must also address the social iniquities of cannabis prohibition and the "war on drugs."

Patients impatient as medical marijuana program stalled in Guam

Posted on April 17th, 2018 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , .

medical marijuanaGoing on two years after the US territory of Guam approved a medical marijuana measure by voter initiative, the program remains stalled over the supposed lack of any laboratory on the island to carry out quality control. Patients and their advocates charge that the island's government is bottle-necking the program by failing to sufficiently fund it. At heated public hearings on the issue last week in the island's legislature, advocates accused authorities of violating the will of the voters.

Cannabis case at issue in Russia World Cup boycott moves

Posted on April 16th, 2018 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , .

CaucasusWith Moscow accused of all manner of sinister shenanigans on the global stage, calls are mounting for a boycott of the World Cup, which is scheduled to be held in Russia this summer. Among the cases drawing special ire from rights groups is that of the leading human rights activist in Chechnya—now imprisoned on a "blatantly fabricated" cannabis charge.

Recovering the lost legacy of cannabis in Japan

Posted on April 12th, 2018 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , .

JapanCannabis is completely verboten n Japan—rare, expensive and very illegal. First Lady Akie Abe broke taboo by advocating a medical marijuana program from the country—but she's now embroiled in scandal, nipping the proposal in the proverbial bud. Yet more grassroots advocates have also emerged. One local historian in agricultural Tochigi Prefecture has opened a "cannabis museum," documenting millennia of use of the plant for medicine, sacrament and fiber in the archipelago.

Cannabis stigma in Paris hate crime case

Posted on April 4th, 2018 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , .

EuropeThe horrific case of an elderly Jewish woman in Paris killed in a clear anti-Semitic attack is being painted as an incidence of "cannabis delirium." Despite all the progress since the days of Reefer Madness in the 1930s, cannabis is still  blamed for violent crime by law enforcement and media alike. Such irrational ugliness has also been repeatedly seen in the cases that have inspired Black Lives Matter on our side of the Atlantic.

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