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City seeks input on pot club rules

Original post made on Dec 6, 2010

A "very challenging" set of regulations on medical marijuana dispensaries in Mountain View needs some direction from the city's residents, says City Attorney Jannie Quinn.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, December 6, 2010, 10:12 AM

Comments (28)

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Posted by why say anything
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 6, 2010 at 12:06 pm

It really does not matter.

If Mountain View even made an attempt at being in compliant with CEQA state statutes maybe someone would care what happens.


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Posted by Zap
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 6, 2010 at 12:06 pm

If Mountain View is really serious about moving forward into the 21st century and permitting medical marijuana dispensaries, they need only to look to Oakland for a framework to start with ... I get the feeling that the Mountain View city council is simply going through the motions and will in the end find some way to "Just say "No"... " to medical marijuana ... Mountain View's regulations about being 1,000 ft. from residences, parks and schools was purposely crafted to remove about 99% of the available properties in Mountain View ... just be HONEST Mountain View city council -- just say "We don't have to!" when it comes to following the will of the people and the law of the State of California ... and I thought we Mountain View residents were pretty much a shining example to other cities of a scientific, compassionate, modern, pro-active approach when it comes to medical marijuana ...


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Posted by BD
a resident of North Whisman
on Dec 6, 2010 at 1:21 pm

I just hope Jannie listens to OUR community's input in regards to rules and regulations. These Medical Cannabis Dispensing Collectives will be set up to provide compassionate care for the sick and dieing patients of our community. If you don't like alternative medicine, that is your opinion and you will not be forced to use cannabis. But please do not make sick patients, that have chosen a safer alternative, to drive many miles to receive relief. We need much education for our city staff and community on this subject so make sure to attend! Thanks!
Brian David
Executive Director
Shoreline Wellness Collective


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Posted by James
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Dec 6, 2010 at 1:32 pm

The Council has no courage to make a decision, this is a stall tactic.
If they were truly serious, they would say "Yes, a dispensary will be in MV and, now we're going to nail down the details" Come on council members, do the right thing.


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Posted by PeaceLove
a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 6, 2010 at 4:01 pm

1. MV Voice disgraces itself again with it's bigoted use of the term "Pot Clubs." Why are you insulting sick and suffering patients with cancer, Alzheimer's, PMS, arthritis, PTSD, depression and other ailments by calling them "potheads?" Did you know there's a "Meth Dispensary" in downtown MV? It's called Long's Drugs. There's also a "Smack Peddler" on Castro. It's called Kaiser pharmacy.

2. The article cites the police department fear that cannabis dispensaries could be targets for robbery. Real journalists can do research on The Google and find that there is no correlation between dispensaries and crime. The LA and the SF police chiefs have both stated so unequivocally. Dispensaries are robbed at lower rates than banks...and no one is calling for a ban on banks.

3. If security IS a fear, then forcing dispensaries to locate in lightly-trafficked industrial zones is counterproductive and INCREASES the risk. Dispensaries should be in normal commercial zones. They do not sell to kids; in fact, if you don't have a valid doctor's recommendation you won't even get in the door. Segregating cannabis dispensaries is can only be justified by ignorance and simple bigotry.

As stated above, we allow drugstores to sell speed, morphine and a wide array of dangerous pharmaceuticals (200,000 deaths/year) right in the heart of town. We also allow sales of alcohol (50,000 deaths annually) and tobacco (400,000 deaths/year) in the middle of town. Cannabis (0 deaths/10,000 years) should not be treated as if it is more dangerous than the above substances. To do so is bad science and dishonest public policy.

4. The issue of mold testing is a red herring because a)You have to search far and wide in the medical literature to find any cases in which mold on cannabis has been blamed for causing any illness (they exist, but in the single digits), and b) we don't require similar testing for the Chinese herbalist on Castro or any other purveyors of herbal medicine. Stop with the hypocrisy, MV City Council!

Jonathan Steigman
Mountain View


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Posted by MV Resident
a resident of Martens-Carmelita
on Dec 6, 2010 at 7:06 pm

Jonathan pretty much said it all. I hope he's at the meeting to speak his mind and represent the truth.


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Posted by the_punnisher
a resident of Whisman Station
on Dec 6, 2010 at 8:53 pm

The MV council should take a good look at how MMJ is handled in the Denver Metro area.

That is if they are truly open about dispensaries in Mountain View...

Using SLANTED and HOT BUTTON descriptions is not good REPORTING and is not a VOICE of Mountain View.

Be professional and not a typical (e)-rag.

That goes DOUBLE when hiding the ILLEGAL ALIEN sanctuary polices...


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Posted by Law
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 6, 2010 at 10:42 pm

Prop 215- was passed to allow patients to grow and possess marijuana and when they get caught to have an affirmative defense in court against prosecution. There is no language that allows the sale of marijuana.

SB 420- clarified Prop 215 and created an ID card that prohibits the holder from being arrested for possession or cultivation. There is no language that allows the sale of marijuana.

The courts have clarified that there is no provision for selling marijuana in either Prop 215 or SB 420. The courts have shown that only a caregiver can assist a patient in obtaining marijuana. No dispensaries qualify as "caregivers" under current case law.

Voters decided not to pass Prop 19 to allow people over 21 to possess marijuana.

All dispensaries are illegal retail outlets for marijuana under current law. There is nothing in any law or court decision that allows for the sale of marijuana. The City Council will be going against the voters and the courts if they create these ordinances to allow the sale of marijuana in dispensaries.

They might as well just legalize marijuana within the city. That way there is no more confusion as to what is illegal and not illegal. Because there is no difference between the dispensaries and the street dealers, other than the dispensaries can afford a storefront.


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Posted by Joonathan Lustig
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Dec 6, 2010 at 11:52 pm

Salutations Friends

My hope is that Thursday will be considered one of the momentous stepping stones along our cities path towards greatness.

Both, the violent crime rate and illegal youth usage of cannabis have steadily declined since we voted on medical cannabis in 1996. In the last 14 years, violent crime has dropped to a 40 year low (50 year low in L.A.) and youth usage has dropped to a 30 year low.

After almost a century worth of propagated propaganda and rhetoric (manifested and executed by the big business elite and our government) that methodically spread falsities throughout our society, we are finally striving closer to what civilizations around the world have known for over 10,000 years..Cannabis is one of the most beneficial medicinal substances to exist on earth while being considered benign when compared to all consumable commodities in our grocery store.

We carry an ethical responsibility to account for and to help accommodate our fellow citizens who are endlessly enduring anguish and distress inflicted on them by a disease, disorder or a disability.

Proposition 215 specifies that "ill patients have the right to obtain and possess marijuana". The spirit of the proposition is quite clear to me.. we passed a law that would allow patients to "obtain" cannabis from somewhere legal, safe and affordable. Forcing them to the streets to "obtain" their medicine through a cartel pawn, whose main objectives are to profiteer by selling cocaine and amphetamines to children, is immoral and utterly irresponsible.

Not embracing and supporting the sick and suffering would be cruel, cowardly and shameful. Three words that I don't believe describe the character of our wonderful city.

How we do it is not as simple as addition nor is it as difficult as rocket science.

When I approached the city council back in 2005 there were hundreds of facilities located throughout the state which we could have analyzed and learned from. Now there are potentially thousands.

The 1,000 foot barrier might be sufficient if the measurement was done using "sidewalk or roadway" feet instead of "linear" feet. I have never understood why, with the technology that we have today, that we would apply distance barriers that expand over people's private property. One establishment would be allowed to locate 1,001 feet straight down the street from a "sensitive area" but an establishment that would require perhaps 2,000 feet of walking/driving distance is not allowed because it is less than 1,000 feet for a bird to fly to. Bizarre.

In a perfect world Cannabis centers could function without accepting cash. I understand and respect the police chiefs position and concern about having cash on-site. There are polices and safeguards that can be abided by to ensure the integrity of the facilities and minimize the possibility of any robbery or burglary. The L.A. police chief announced several months ago that banks (even while excluding outside atm's and outside bank branches) were statistically almost 5 times more likely to be robbed than a cannabis dispensary inside their city.

I would welcome cannabis centers that were restricted to only credit/atm card transactions if they were plausible or fair, but unfortunately they would not be;

1.We have a constitutional right to privacy as well as a right not to incriminate ourselves. Yes, theoretically because the federal government still says "marijuana has no proven medical value" and can prosecute an individual accordingly, we would be forcing patients to submit to forfeiting both rights by requiring mandatory signatures on purchases.

2.There are many people who do not have credit cards nor do they have bank accounts. Excluding a minority is disenfranchising and not morally acceptable.

3.Even though the city attorney stated that she is familiar with cities that have implemented such a guideline, I have not personally heard of this and I do not believe enforcing such a policy on a patient would be legal. Cash only, yes..Credit card only, no.

It is true that there is data, although very limited, about a fungus within cannabis (when improperly grown) that has caused problems for people with weak respiratory systems. There was a case back in 1986 where the doctors hypothesized that the fungus could have potentially expedited the death of a patient who had lung cancer. A person with lung cancer shouldn't be smoking anything at all. The fungus that the hypothetical conclusion was based off of is noticeable to the naked eye and would never be given to patients by any respectable well run wellness center. In 10,000 years of worldwide cannabis consumption there have been 0 definitive documented cases specifying an overdose or an allergic reaction which has resulted in death. Testing for mold is not necessary when it can be detected with our eyes, without machinery or the expense. I do suggest facilities should test their medicine for T.H.C. and CBD content so that their patients are aware of the medicinal strength of the strains that they are inhaling or ingesting.

Attempting to deny people access to a grocery store or a gas station because they live in a different city would be absurd. Prohibiting patients from accessing their medication in our city because of their residency would be unprincipled and blatantly wrong.

I don't believe in establishing caps on any type of establishment as well. Monopolies are inequitable and at times they become problematic. Perhaps a "pilot" type program should be created where only 2-4 are allowed for the first year or two, and then have another educated and informed decision about lifting the restriction or continuing it.

There is no doubt in my mind that intellectuals in Mountain View can achieve our goal of having envied and admired cannabis wellness centers here for those who desperately need access to their medication. The betterment of our society and humanity, depend on us.

I find it interesting and very disappointing as well that many people have conveyed to the Voice how disgusting and ignorant it is to use "pot" verbiage. The term "pot" is equivalent to the "n" word or referring to me as a "cr*cker". The term was derived with anti-mexican sentiment in mind and spread with evil intent. Its use only allows disgracefulness and immorality to continue on. In 2005 I wrote a guest editorial for the MV Voice and even though I had titled it "Our County's Patients Deserve Medical Cannabis", they change my word "Cannabis", to "Pot". I was told it was because only "Pot" would fit in the title line, sure…

I have been censored two other times online by the Voice;

1.I had responded to someone who had stated patients are "just stoners trying to get high" by saying "Paul, you're a genis" without the "u". The Voice censored it saying I violated the terms of service..Perhaps it would have been justifiable if they would have also filtered out people ridiculing, demeaning and persecuting patients by calling them "delinquents", "detriments to society", "low lifes", "people with poor hygiene", "people who stink", and of course "potheads". All that seems to be ok with the Voice but Im prohibited from sarcastically calling someone a "genis"…suspicious.

2.Just recently on another thread I saw someone again commenting that 'all patients were lying' about benefiting from cannabis so I replied with "anyone who states that is def*cat*ng and ur*nat*ng on moms with ms, dads with chron's disease, sisters with epilepsy, brothers with ptsd..The voice not only censored that 5 percent of my comment, they eliminated it in its entirety. The rest had nothing to do with shaming anyone and in-fact I was attempting to share some valuable information pertaining to cannabis with the online community…suspicious indeed.

If this wasn't the grand city that I grew up in, maybe I wouldn't care as much about the Voice being biased. But our honorable city deserves better than that. Not only do you owe it to the residents, Voice, you owe it to the founder of our newspaper.

I look forward to a serious, open, honest and educational discussion this Thursday..See you all there.

Jonathan Lustig


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Posted by Voter
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 7, 2010 at 8:16 am

Thank you Jonathan Steigman for your extremely rational post. I've never heard anyone refuting your claims with actual facts. The only contrary arguments I've heard are based on pre-determined and biased opinion, and they have been factually incorrect.
The council seem to grab non-truths (ie the crime issue) and ignore the facts that the dispensaries DO NOT increase crime. We've had 10 years to see this and now we know that this is true. The council somehow refuses to hear and accept certain FACTS because it goes against their biased OPINION.


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Posted by Voter
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 7, 2010 at 1:37 pm

To The Editor:

I'm going to assume it was an oversight and a simple attempt at making short, eye catchng headlines, but now that its been brought to your attention, can you see how calling a medical cannabis dispensary a "Pot club" can an insult so many people who have a medical need for this important plant? If so I would assume the future use of this derogatory term in the headlines and stories will not re-occur.

Its very clear you read these forums since they are moderated so regularly so now that you know you're insulting some of the sick in our community by using this derogatory term, it would be nice to confirm that it was not the intent to insult and it won't happen again now that you've been made aware of it.


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Posted by Andrea Gemmet
Mountain View Voice Editor
on Dec 7, 2010 at 2:27 pm

Andrea Gemmet is a registered user.

You are correct, "pot club" fits in a headline, whereas "medical cannabis dispensary" usually does not. No offense is intended.


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Posted by Voter
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 7, 2010 at 2:35 pm

Editor:

"No offense is intended."

Totally acceptable in this instance, but now that you KNOW its insulting to the sick in our community, I assume you'll make the effort to use a different term, say like "cannabis club" right? Or how about a very acceptable acronym like MMJ? I'm sure the word smiths at the voice can think of some other non offensive term, if they had a sensitivity to avoid insulting their readers. The N word is shorter than African American but I bet you would make room for African American.
That's an extreme example, but a valid comparison. Thanks for understanding.


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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Dec 7, 2010 at 3:55 pm

"Prop 215- was passed to allow patients to grow and possess marijuana and when they get caught to have an affirmative defense in court against prosecution. There is no language that allows the sale of marijuana.

SB 420- clarified Prop 215 and created an ID card that prohibits the holder from being arrested for possession or cultivation. There is no language that allows the sale of marijuana.

The courts have clarified that there is no provision for selling marijuana in either Prop 215 or SB 420. The courts have shown that only a caregiver can assist a patient in obtaining marijuana. No dispensaries qualify as "caregivers" under current case law.

Voters decided not to pass Prop 19 to allow people over 21 to possess marijuana.

All dispensaries are illegal retail outlets for marijuana under current law. There is nothing in any law or court decision that allows for the sale of marijuana. The City Council will be going against the voters and the courts if they create these ordinances to allow the sale of marijuana in dispensaries.

They might as well just legalize marijuana within the city. That way there is no more confusion as to what is illegal and not illegal. Because there is no difference between the dispensaries and the street dealers, other than the dispensaries can afford a storefront."

-------------------

"Law" is correct.

There is no stipulation in the state law that requires a City to allow a dispensary. At most, state law provides localities the authority to allow, restrict, or prevent dispensaries within their borders.

All the arguments for a dispensary, all the rationalizations in an attempt to justify them, represent a special interest group pushing an agenda to be realized in this City, at the expense of residents and City interests and protections.

And to another point made by "Law", besides a store front, what is the difference between a dispensary and a street dealer when the primary control factor here is the user's "intent" to consume marijuana as a medicine?

ie, if I have a medical card, it doesn't matter in the eyes of the law where I get marijuana from.

This isn't about insulting the sick, or depriving anyone of medicine.

Accusing someone of being uncaring because they don't give you what you want is like my children throwing temper tantrums when I don't give them ice cream every night.


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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Dec 7, 2010 at 4:14 pm

"Thank you Jonathan Steigman for your extremely rational post. I've never heard anyone refuting your claims with actual facts."

------------

Really?

Then you're not reading, or at the very least, reading selectively. I've fact checked and linked in these discussion, many of the generalizations, inconsistencies, and information taken out of context posed by pro medicinal supporters for months now. Bottom line, there is some evidence that suggests components in marijuana may have a therapeutic effect, but more studies are needed to determine targeted treatments and side affects.



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Posted by Hardin
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Dec 7, 2010 at 4:17 pm

"The only contrary arguments I've heard are based on pre-determined and biased opinion, and they have been factually incorrect."

-----------

Come now, to retain even a suggestion that you have read and analyzed both sides of this story, you'll need to admit that you're really the pot calling the kettle black here with this statement.


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Posted by Kristine
a resident of Monta Loma
on Dec 7, 2010 at 8:46 pm

Why on earth would it have any greater crime than a 7-11 or a Bank? should we not allow Banks to use money either? Plus putting it in the less bustling parts of town would be counter productive. Criminals love places with fewer eyes. And the 600 feet from schools? You need a CARD to get access. Same difficulty level of getting alcohol. If a kid manages to get marijuana from these stores he could just as easily be getting booze and perspiration drugs to get buzzed. So,unless we're willing to be this paranoid about all intoxicants and all places of commerce cause 'it could be robbed' this is retarded.


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Posted by n
a resident of St. Francis Acres
on Dec 7, 2010 at 10:35 pm

Well said, Jonathan Steigman! I totally agree.


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Posted by Thom
a resident of Jackson Park
on Dec 8, 2010 at 4:49 pm

The use of medical marijuana is abused by too many people. Doctors included.
I have a card, and have since it was first legal. I have seen too many cases where people buy the product and turn around and sell it. Or jump in a car with friends showing what they have to party with.

I've known people that told me they got their recommendation just by showing up to a clinic. Once there he told me there was maybe 30 people in a small room. A Doctor walked in and opened a briefcase and handed everyone an application and saying "leave the reason blank" "I will fill it in later" No questions asked about medical conditions or records from legitimate doctors or hospitals.

It's a very profitable business and that's why people need to relax. We do not want the previous people that raged over them not being allowed to open a shop in this city. We need professionals that have only one interest at heart and that's to help people that need help. Not people that see a get rich quick scheme. And yes, I am accusing those mentioned of being nothing but greedy and opportunistic.

I would even suggest a city run pharmacy operated by city approved, pre-screened employees, and using a vendor to test for thc content. I would also suggest hiring a consultant to educate the council and potential employees on which strains work for different ailments. Indica does not give the same medicated state as Sativa's. It does matter. Sativa is better for people looking for that cerebral medication, while Indica is more of a medication to help you relax or fall asleep ignoring the pain,etc.

Regulate it and find ways to make sure the patients are "legitimate"


-- Ona side note. Employers do not have to accept the medical marijuana law in the state yet we have local cities and towns making money from the young industry. Workers with legitimate documented ailments or diseases that use medical marijuana in place of chemical drugs need to be protected. And no I am not advocating the use at workplaces. I would never think of it. But then again drinking alcohol's been legal forever and I never went to work drunk either.


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Posted by W-Park Dude
a resident of Waverly Park
on Dec 8, 2010 at 6:44 pm

Let's be serious, this medical marijuana thing and the "sick" needing their "medicine" is a scam. Obviously their is a small percentage of people that are truly sick and should not be denied whatever they need to make their life tolerable, however, insomnia, anorexia, etc., that can be recommended by any old fly by night MD willing to part with a piece of paper for $150 or whatever? Come on. I'm not sure I'm uncomfortable with it just being legalized totally but the recent rejection at the ballot box was, at least in part, due to normal citizens seeing through the NORML-type peoples' bunk excuse making. Proponents can try to make cogent arguments, they just can't get enough of their followers to register and vote.


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Posted by Mr. Big
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 8, 2010 at 10:59 pm

Another violent assault in MV using a deadly weapon in the last two weeks, this is the third time I call for CCW to all law abiding citizens to send the message to the thugs not to mess with MV residents.

Lighting, cameras and cops can't stop the crime from being committed in the first place.


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Posted by Voter
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Dec 9, 2010 at 6:15 am

"Obviously their is a small percentage of people that are truly sick and should not be denied whatever they need to make their life tolerable"
Thank you. Now lets get started helping those people and not punishing them because you don't like cheaters. I feel the same about all the housewives popping tranquilizers and pain pills but I'm not ready to close down the Walgreens.


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Posted by concerned Doctor
a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 10, 2010 at 9:07 am

This letter to the editor in a Santa Barbara newspaper was written by a group of Physicians to urge the closer of Medical Marijuana Dispensaries in their city. Please read... I agree with the physicians comments and I am concerned that the youth in our city and surrounding cities will come to MV to obtain pot for recreational use after receiving the cards from corrupt Doctors.

"We urge Santa Barbara voters to vote
YES on Measure T, to ban marijuana
stores within city limits. It's a vote to
preserve our city's character, to control
crime, and to protect youth and other
vulnerable populations from marijuana
proliferation.
We are practicing, board-certified
physicians in Santa Barbara. We're real
doctors, not ones whose sole practice is
selling marijuana recommendations for
money. We're also parents involved in
the local schools. We're speaking out
because we've seen too many 18-yearold
patients in our offices with "medical
marijuana cards" often issued by nonboard-
certified physicians who sell such
recommendations. These recommendations
are usually medical nonsense—
what we and most doctors view as an
abuse of the original language and
intent of Proposition 215, the
Compassionate Use Act of 1996.
We support compassionate use of
marijuana for appropriate patients but
have concerns about promoting use in
healthy people. Negative health effects
of chronic use include the same problems
encountered in tobacco abuse and
because of healing problems marijuana
smokers are not good candidates for
several types of operations and some
cancer therapies. More serious are the
cognitive impairment, serious psychiatric
problems, and safety concerns.
Genuine compassionate use patients—
for example the seriously ill for whom
marijuana is an effective pain reliever or
appetite stimulant—are a tiny minority
of marijuana store customers. After
surveying board members of the Santa
Barbara County Medical Society and
local physicians, we believe that there
are approximately 40 valid recommendations
per year for medical marijuana
on the South Coast. Yet one now-shuttered
pot store on upper State Street had
more than 5000 customers in its database.
The vast majority of pot store
purchases are for recreational use by
"patients" whose medical "recommendations"
are made by doctors in the
business of selling access to intoxicating
drugs.
What about the roughly 40 patients
per year on the South Coast for whom
marijuana is a beneficial drug? The best
argument for banning pot stores is simply
that those patients don't need them.
Opponents to Measure T have spouted a
great deal of misinformation about
maintaining "safe access" for marijuana
patients. The pot store proponents
claim that patients need storefronts so
they don't have to deal with the "black
market". Real patients, even the profoundly
disabled, can get all the marijuana
they need from the multitude of
pot cooperatives which are already
legally sanctioned and available to anyone
who can do a Google search or dial
a phone. A completely paralyzed MS
patient can get marijuana delivered to
his home from legitimate local collectives,
or just have a caregiver go online
and order from www.medical-marijuana.
com. They deliver via FedEx. These
organizations will still exist with or
without Measure T (and with or without
Proposition 19).
If the original plan for marijuana cultivation
and distribution promised by
Proposition 215 were the extent of it,
we probably wouldn't see the problems
we are having currently with cannabis.
As pot stores proliferated openly on the
streets of our city—the only city in the
tri-counties to allow them—they have
made something formerly low key into
a high visibility retail business.
Clearly, marijuana is being diverted
from these stores to teenagers. Earlier
this year the police arrested a City
College student who was buying mass
quantities of weed from pot stores and
mailing it out of state for resale.
(Evidently pot stores had no problem
with multi-pound purchases by healthy
young men.) When arrested, this man
was in the process of selling to a local
high-school-age student.
Our school administrators often confiscate
cannabis from students who have
it in dispensary containers, not even
bothering to conceal the name of the
store on the bottle. Chronic marijuana
use by teens delays and some believe
may permanently limit development of
many life skills. We don't need more
25 year olds with the maturity of a 14
year old.
It's very difficult to stop diversion of
medical marijuana to inappropriate populations.
The best way to prevent diversion
is to reduce the number of outlets
where marijuana can be purchased.
This by itself won't cure the problem of
drugs in schools, but having government-
sanctioned drug outlets on the
street sends a terrible message to our
kids. Measure T is about banning pot
stores because they
1) Bring crime, and are difficult and
expensive to regulate
2) Are increasing the supply of marijuana
brought into our city that is being
diverted to teens
3) Promote the idea that the regular
use of intoxicating drugs is an acceptable
way of dealing with the vicissitudes
of everyday life and
4) Are an "attractive nuisance" that
degrade the fabric of our community
and promote Santa Barbara as a pot
haven.
To protect our young people and our
city, banning marijuana stores is a sensible
idea whose time has come."


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Posted by Patient
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Dec 10, 2010 at 9:53 am

Its simple: Look to the cities that have done it and note any systemic problems, not the most outrageous anecdotal story you can find, we can find lots of those for opiate abusers as well.
The rest is just speculatory fears already proven false by the cities that have had medical pot dispensaries for nearly a decade.
We have case study cities to go by but many don't want to cite that there have been no major issues as the fear mongers would tell you.


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Posted by Patient
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Dec 10, 2010 at 10:04 am

Here's the step by step answer to the fears:

1) Bring crime, and are difficult and expensive to regulate.

Nope. Police chiefs in SF and LA contradict this with real crime stats. Its as easy or difficult to regulate as the city makes it.

2) Are increasing the supply of marijuana brought into our city that is being diverted to teens.

Nope. See the statement about what the pilice chief's say. The pots already here, we're just talking about who sells it,

3) Promote the idea that the regular use of intoxicating drugs is an acceptable way of dealing with the vicissitudes of everyday life.

Hmm, sounds similar to mom and dad's daily glasses of wine to me.

4) Are an "attractive nuisance" that degrade the fabric of our community and promote Santa Barbara as a pot haven.

Yes, lets keep it a wine drinkers heaven with back roads filled with drunk drivers "touring the wine country" and killing people(there's legitimate stats for that too)

All the points in the letter ignore the core users these clubs are trying to help and only try to cloud the issue by striking fears that have already proven to be false. Its always the last gasp of someone without a valid point to scream "What about the children!"
Well, the kids are alright, we have case study cities to prove that already.


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Posted by PeaceLove
a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 11, 2010 at 10:29 pm

Anyone who believes cannabis is less available to kids when dispensaries aren't around is living a dream. Cannabis has always been very easy for kids to get. Dispensaries, like pharmacies, have a strong incentive to stay within the law and only sell to those with legitimate recommendations.

Are there bad apples? Sure, but of course no one has ever died from an overdose of cannabis. Is there widespread abuse of legal, prescription drugs? Absolutely yes, and with devastating consequences. Shall we ban Walgreens?

Worth pointing out, too, that youth rates of cannabis usage have gone down consistently since 215 was passed. So any claim that the prevalence of dispensaries leads more kids to use cannabis is unsupported by facts.


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Posted by PeaceLove
a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 11, 2010 at 10:59 pm

The doctors' fact-free letter cited in the comments above displays their ignorance and little else. They seem to think cannabis is only needed by the "seriously" ill (which they never define). The doctors decide there are only 40 qualified patients in the whole South Bay, a satirically absurd number they seem to have invented out of thin air given they offer nothing whatsoever in the way of evidence.

The doctors bemoan the bad apples among them, "non-board-certified" physicians who are allegedly over-promiscuous with their recommendation pad. Again, they offer no actual evidence. Nevertheless, their solution isn't to try to reform their own profession but rather to scapegoat legitimate dispensaries.

Fortunately, cooler heads prevail in Mountain View. The Council is doing an honorable job trying to craft the guidelines by which patients will have safe local access to much-needed medicine. For that they deserve commendation.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Factoid
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Dec 13, 2010 at 11:14 am

I guess it all boils down to whether you believe the fears that have been factually proven wrong or facts that have been fearfully ignored.


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