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Fisher & O'connell V. Chuck Ream‏


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Wow! Lots to digest here. All I can say is thank you Chuck for all the time and effort you put in!

Haven't gotten through all of it, but certainly can already tell how well researched- and well-said-

this essay is. It's a pleasure to say we live in the same town-can't wait to see all your spring bulbs-

and may the prayers that were planted along with them come true. Every single one of them. Amen.

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Very accurate analysis of the the municipal leagues white paper and judge o'connels opinion.

This should be part of the State of Michigan Historical Record kept in the Gerald Ford Library ! Undoubtedly in time it will be . Return the plant to Nature and spend efforts on the real , not manafactured , problems of humanity . I hope those with legal teeth bancrupt the MML there are no gray areas , Patients first !

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This should be part of the State of Michigan Historical Record kept in the Gerald Ford Library ! Undoubtedly in time it will be . Return the plant to Nature and spend efforts on the real , not manafactured , problems of humanity . I hope those with legal teeth bancrupt the MML there are no gray areas , Patients first !

 

 

ditto

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Thank you, Chuck. Fantastic job!!

 

Following were some excerpts that I found most interesting. I have been having discussions with friends on these very topics. I intend to ask these friends to read the excepts and pass them along to others. Hopefully these will entice folks to read the 'Green Paper' in it's entirety. Thanks again Chuck.

 

 

 

Following are excerpts that I have taken from ‘The Green Paper’. It was written in November 2010 as a response to the essays referred to below.

The author of ‘The Green Paper’ is Chuck Ream. He is an Ann Arbor Compassion Center President, a 33 year Michigan kindergarten teacher, a 20 year elected township trustee, a Michigan Licensed Professional Counselor, and a political activist for cannabis and American Values.

 

Essays

 

The “White Paper” called “A LOCAL GOVERNMENT VIEW OF THE MICHIGAN MEDICAL MARIJUANA ACT” by Gerald A. Fisher, 63 pg., is the product of the Michigan Municipal League.

 

The Concurring Opinion in the case of Michigan v. Robert Redden and Torey Clark, by Judge P. J. O’Connell, Sept 14, 2010

 

 

Green Paper Excerpts

 

Before starting this essay I carefully planted more than 300 tulip and daffodil bulbs in front of my compassion center in Ann Arbor. I prayed that democracy be respected and suffering relieved. When these flowers bloom in their springtime glory the cannabis community will be growing even faster, providing good jobs and amazing medicine, and “reinventing Michigan” with the help of our mighty, ancient, healing flower.

 

All of our lives the powerful have said to us, “If you don’t like the law then you should use the democratic process to change it”. So we grew up and did it. Sixty three percent of Michiganders passed the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act. Every part of that act is now the law of the State of Michigan.

A significant antidemocratic reaction is coalescing in Michigan which seeks to make the law unworkable in practice and then take complete control of any patients or caregivers who persist in using cannabis medicine in Michigan. A draconian solution is being proposed where there is no real problem. They want to “fix” a system that isn’t broken, so that the power and revenue of local government is enhanced.

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They have a hard time understanding that the act was not written with “gaps” or “omissions” that they are called upon to fill with bureaucrats and inspectors. If something is “omitted” it obviously means that the highly experienced writers of this law did not want it in there. Our Act was crafted with extreme care, and was thoroughly examined and revised by the prestigious law firm Dykema, Gosset Inc.. Its goal was to win big and it did. No matter how long it takes, the medical marijuana community will litigate every point, at great cost to taxpayers, until the regulations match the initiative language which passed with 63% in favor. Local officials CAN’T CHANGE THE LAW to take rights away from citizens or to add burdens.

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The reality of legal medical marijuana is deeply upsetting to all those who make their living from preying on fellow citizens, all the widely varied functionaries in the prison industrial complex. They will fight for their jobs. They plan to destroy our new act and regain all of their power. (They have been so successful that the USA imprisons about seven times as many people as other advanced nations – an indelible stain on the soul of our nation – but a consistent moneymaker. Now we have a newly elected Michigan Attorney General whose stated goal is to reopen prisons and fill them up.) The majority of the “Drug War” is still about cannabis, so Drug Warriors will lose funding and jobs when our society relaxes its attitude toward cannabis. Many law enforcement jobs are directly paid for by terrorizing local families and seizing their home, vehicles, bank accounts, computers, children, boats, etc.. This distinctly un-American practice, called “civil forfeiture”, (no trial or criminal charges are required) has become a major revenue source that the prison industrial complex depends on and fights to preserve. The reaction of these forces, which is now brewing against the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act, is about jobs, money, power, and “turf”, it has nothing to do with science or public health. If drug warriors had any way to support their position they would agree to debate.

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Most cities in Michigan belong to the Michigan Municipal League, which has decided that cities and townships must now take over the regulation and inspection of every aspect of the Michigan Medical Marijuana Law. This is, of course, directly contrary to the words in the law, which state:

(g) Possession of, or application for, a registry identification card shall not constitute probable cause or reasonable suspicion, nor shall it be used to support the search of the person or property of the person possessing or applying for the registry identification card, or otherwise subject the person or property of the person to inspection by any local, county or state governmental agency.

This is about as clearly as a concept can be expressed using the English language. People participating in the program have three clear rights under this section. They are to be held safe from suspicion, search, or inspection “by ANY state, county, or state governmental agency”.

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If it is true that some doctors are simply “selling recommendations” then this is illegal and must stop. However, if we admit that MEDICAL RECORDS exist, a ten minute appointment is plenty of time to ascertain whether a patient has a malady which qualifies them to use medical marijuana in Michigan. It was excruciatingly well known to the drafters of the MMMA that most doctors (and most huge systems of doctors, like the University of Michigan or the Veterans Administration) are directed to never write recommendations for medical marijuana, (which they don’t understand well and cannot make a lot of money from). The drafters understood from long and brutal experience that the MMMA could not help most patients in the real world unless it included these dual pathways for getting a physicians recommendation. It is clear in the plain wording of the law and was the obvious intent of the framers of the initiative to “create an alternative scenario under which a physician may issue a written certification”. Otherwise, most patients who have a qualifying condition would never have a way to become qualified patients under the Act.

The law was written with the intent that it would be able to function, and was approved with 63% in favor. This is a mandate for implementation, not obstructionism.

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O’Connell’s opinion constantly shows ignorance of cannabis as medicine. He says that doctors fail “to set any medical boundaries” (pg 15) for cannabis use, not understanding that cannabis dosage is totally individualistic. Idiosyncratic dosage requirements are one of the main reasons that cannabis medicine fell out of fashion in the 1890’s. Aspirin and morphine, for instance, are more predictable; and dosages can be standardized.

 

Also, “One supposes”, says he, “that most citizens voting for the MMMA envisioned” (he does not explain how he determines what people “envision”), “that patients would visit their regular doctors, obtain prescriptions for marijuana and then have the prescription filled at a licensed pharmacy” (pg. 23-24). What a sentence! You can’t get a “prescription” for something that has been (falsely) labeled a Schedule I drug. Does he honestly think that voters had never heard of dispensaries in California and assumed that medical marijuana patients could go to the drugstore? He wants to hold on to the status quo, but the voters are way out ahead of him.

 

O’Connor provides his lecture about Schedule I drugs as if the federal classification had some validity, but its only validity is in the law. No person who was not in the employ of the prison-industrial complex would agree that cannabis could meet any one of the three standards, all of which must be met to identify a Schedule I drug. First, cannabis does not have a high potential for abuse, even compared to soda pop or french fries, let alone alcohol or heroin. Since I have used cannabis each day for 43 years, I would have noticed by now if there was a problem. Second, cannabis is perfectly safe for medical use. The federal government once declared, through DEA appointed Judge Francis Young, after two years of gathering data, that marijuana was “one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man”. Third, cannabis clearly has recognized medical uses within the United States, since 15 states have already passed it into law. Hundreds of thousands of Americans are now qualified patients, using cannabis medicine as needed.

 

This Schedule I designation is a stain on our national moral character, a harmful anachronism that will make future Americans ashamed of their ancestors. It has damaged, and sometimes devastated, the lives of more than 10 million otherwise law abiding Americans. It is a disgraceful embarrassment, since everyone understands that it is a lie in each detail. No evidence or reason caused cannabis to be listed as a schedule one drug. This “scheduling” system was developed around 1970, when a lawsuit by Professor Timothy Leary derailed the old “tax stamp” law that had been in place since pot was outlawed in 1937. President Nixon told the government to classify cannabis as a Schedule I substance, pending the report of the National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse (1972). Nixon’s very conservative commission exhaustively studied the marijuana issue and declared it was a “Signal of Misunderstanding”, and that both possession and small scale sale of marijuana should be made legal. When Nixon found out he immediately promised to ignore the recommendations of his “blue ribbon” commission.

 

Children are damaged when they learn that government will openly lie to them and conduct a cultural war against cannabis with such ferocity that an American is arrested every 37 seconds…and that the next victim could be them. The serious damage from entanglement with the legal system is much more damaging than cannabis to the lives of young people. Schedule I may be the law, but it is immoral to defend it.

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It is true that a few portions of our law could be tightened up, and the leaders of the medical marijuana community have already agreed to revisions; in subcommittee hearings with Rep. Fred Durhal Jr., on Nov. 16, 2010. We are not being inflexible. We will never compromise, however, on the principle that medical patients, with a doctor’s recommendation, must have safe access to medical marijuana in Michigan.

It may be possible to work things out in Michigan so that all parties will be more satisfied, but that would take “good faith” on the part of people who are deeply invested in perpetuating the status quo of ”SWAT team” type Drug War and civil forfeiture without a conviction in court.

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Link to ‘The Green Paper’

 

http://norml.net/attached/finalGREENXPAPERXXXXX300XBULBSXXXCHUCKXREAM.doc

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there should be a forensic linguist checking every piece of legislation crafted to weed out the linguistic chicanery Chuck exposes so well. Medical Marijuana Officer!!! can you say "most bribed guy on the block"? The taxpayer supported para military terror squads operating in our midst would not be happy with such an incursion into their turf

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