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Editorial: Pot Testing Program Absurd


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http://www.detroitnews.com/story/opinion/2016/06/15/editorial-pot-testing-program-absurd/85956010/

 

 

 

 

Editorial: Pot testing program absurd

The Detroit News11:34 p.m. EDT June 15, 2016
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(Photo: Todd McInturf / The Detroit News)

Before breaking for the summer, the Legislature approved an extra-constitutional one-year pilot program that allows police officers to conduct roadside saliva testing on drivers they suspect might be under the influence of a variety of drugs.

It’s the kind of legislation that sounds beneficial, but threatens privacy and due process rights. Gov. Rick Snyder should veto a bill that is bound to be a litigation machine.

The test can identify the presence of certain controlled substances in an individual’s body, including cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine and marijuana.

But unlike alcohol, the test only confirms that the drugs are present in the blood, not the level. So it assumes that any trace of marijuana or the other drugs indicates driving impairment, an assumption contradicted by a recent study from AAA’s safety foundation.

The insurer’s study found there’s no common blood level of the active ingredient in pot at which driving generally becomes impaired, and that for the most part, it depends on the individual. Drivers with higher levels of THC in their systems might drive as well as those who’ve never touched the drug, particularly if they’re regular marijuana users. Others with low levels might be unsafe behind the wheel.

Further, marijuana can be detected in saliva for several days after being ingested or smoked, long after a person’s ability to safely operate a vehicle would be affected.

These issues pose problems particularly for Michigan medical marijuana patients, who already struggle under a vague, inaccessible and discriminatory system. This absurd roadside testing bill essentially takes away their right to drive.

A House Fiscal Agency analysis of this legislation argued marijuana patients shouldn’t have new problems “as long as they do not show signs of impaired driving and are otherwise in compliance with the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act.”

But complying with the act is already unclear for many patients, and this only makes it worse.

And “signs of impaired driving” is a highly subjective standard.

This legislation comes from Sen. Rick Jones, R-Grand Ledge, the Legislature’s resident Puritan, a former law enforcement officer intent on imposing his prohibitionist worldview on the rest of Michigan.

Under the law, if a driver refuses the roadside saliva test, he or she would be given a civil infraction ticket, the same as those who refuse tests for alcohol.

The law provides no direction for what is to be done with tests after they’re administered, carrying with them highly sensitive personal information and genetic material.

The saliva tests will be costly — roughly $30 each — and require extra training for law enforcement. The tests will take at least 20-30 minutes to administer, tying up officers from other important work.

This program, as currently written, is too vague to be properly or fairly administered. It will end up costing the state much more time and money than it’s worth.

 
 
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That is such b.s!

 

I can get drunk as a skunk at nite, quit drinking around midnite and pass a breathalyzer by 6 a.m,  I have done this, I had to get breath tested every sat and sun yrs ago, I drank on the nites before most nites, (weekends and boating include drinks for me)  If I smoke or do medibles it is in my system for 30 days or longer!

 

I can do cocaine and it is out of my system in like 3 to 5 days or shorter, as are many other narcotics or ilegal drugs!

 

A marijuana user does not steal for their habbit, they dont get all geeked up and want to fight, they cant realy o.d in the sense that they need to go to a hospital, (people may get to high to qualify, but if they relax it goes away w/o medical help)  People dont smoke a jointe and run over a bunch of people on a side walk like a drunk driver may do!

 

You cant compare mj to any other drugs or alcohol, there realy is no comaparisson, none, mm makes your pain go away as good as most narco's, at least they do for me, they work the same, narco's get in your spinal fluid and tell your brain you dont have pain, mj does the same thing, plus it puts a smile on your face and makes you mellow not a drunked up, drugged up danger to society or them selves!

 

Junk science is junk science!

 

Peace

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might be same as refusing alcohol test (suspension of license and they get blood draw). but i dont know if they put that in at the last minute or not. i'd have to check the bill.http://legislature.mi.gov/doc.aspx?2015-SB-0207

I would not comply and would not give saliva or give consent for a search Edited by kindfolk
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Senator Rick Jones must have "the goods" on a whole bunch of other legislators, seems whatever he wants he gets( maybe Rick "Lola" Jones, couldn't help it :>)I sure hope Snyder vetoes this, actually I hope it is a bad dream!!

Farmer Brown

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What ever happened to "Innocent until Proven Guilty". Cannabis stays in the system a long time, i am a legal patient, cannabis has no effect on the way i drive, lotta years and miles under my belt, with no accidents or tickets. How can these be legal ?????? Just read a few hours ago Snyder passed the bill. Smh

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What ever happened to "Innocent until Proven Guilty". Cannabis stays in the system a long time, i am a legal patient, cannabis has no effect on the way i drive, lotta years and miles under my belt, with no accidents or tickets. How can these be legal ??????

 

Everything that is not explicitly allowed is forbidden.

Some things that are explicitly allowed are forbidden depending on the circumstances.

Some things that are explicitly allowed are forbidden depending on who you are.

 

Is for greater good of Glorious Homeland, comrade.

 

nothing-to-hide-cut.jpg

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What ever happened to "Innocent until Proven Guilty". Cannabis stays in the system a long time, i am a legal patient, cannabis has no effect on the way i drive, lotta years and miles under my belt, with no accidents or tickets. How can these be legal ?????? Just read a few hours ago Snyder passed the bill. Smh

 I fully expect sniveling Snyder to sign the bill,after all he got the legalization movement stopped with the 180 day rule,if they( repubs) could have gotten something like that done when the original medical M amendment passed, they sure would have. Now they want to punish all of us medical M supporters( personally I feel this staretd as a collaberation between Rick Jones and Bill Bong Shuette, remember Schuette was trying like the dickens to get it where medical M patients could not drive a vehicle, now the swabs!! The swabs are so notoriously faulty I have read that they have been discontinued in many places around the world, of course, we cannot let science play a role in common sense legislation. With all that is wrong in our state, with all the things that are in total disrepair and they want to spend money they do not have on swabs?? Where is the evidence that pot smokers are causing hazards on the highway??

Farmer Brown

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The legislature just undid 8 years of court battles for our rights. MMJ patients are no longer allowed to drive unless they want to be harassed and possibly arrested for bogus DUI. LEO is going to abuse the **** out of this law, even when you consider that it fails to specifically include medical marijuana (its all schedule I in their minds). At least a refusal is only a civil infraction similar to refusing a roadside breathalyzer, which I hope everyone holding a MMJ card will do.

 

Or reasonable cause to believe that a person had in his or her body any amount of a controlled substance listed in schedule I under section 7212 of the public health code, 1978 PA 368, MCL 333.7212 or a rule promulgated under that section, or of a controlled substance described in section 7214(A)(iv) of the public health code, 1978 PA 368, MCL 333.7214, may require the person to submit to a preliminary oral fluid analysis administered under this subsection. 

 

We all know what’s to come of this. Faint smell of cannabis on you, your clothes or in your car and you’ll be asked for a swab. If they find out you are a MMJ patient you will be asked for a swab. Prior arrest dealing with MMJ or controlled substances, you will probably find yourself being swabbed. This law, not science, gives these BS tests merit in court and will be used against us even though we are allowed to drive with THC in our system. Seriously fk these legislatures, they need to be personally held accountable for violating civil rights with this, the transport law and the emergency manager law. They are going to put Michigan in serious debt with all the lawsuits.

 

And who wrote the house analysis?

 

A House Fiscal Agency analysis of this legislation argued marijuana patients shouldn’t have new problems “as long as they do not show signs of impaired driving and are otherwise in compliance with the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act.”

 

Wtf are they talking about, the law clearly says reasonable cause to believe any amount exists. It has absolutely nothing to do with MMMA compliance and blatantly contradicts MSC rulings...

Edited by Alphabob
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Went to the website to read the script of the law as presented to Snyder for signing. One thing I noticed is the swabs are supposed to be able to identify Schedule 1 drugs in one's system. So, if we can get MM rescheduled to schedule 2, will that remove the MM from the list of prohibited drugs?

Farmer Brown

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Just say NO to schedule 2.

 

De-scheduling imho is the only answer.

 

 

Also, isn't this pilot program (hahaha, as if they'll give it up after a year) in 5 counties only?

 

I attended the House Judiciary hearing on this and was quite appalled that Rick Jones and the MSP admitted that

there is no science behind this and the willingness of our legislators to let some bs like this fly. bah, more bad legislation.

 

Ruth Robinson (dist. 4) was the only one who spoke out about how will this affect mmj patients and she also wanted to know

how this would be fair to those in the pilot counties.  Seems in the end they don't give a chit.

 

Vote them OUT!!!

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We need to get a list of every legislature who voted for the emergency manager law, the illegal transport law and this new saliva testing law. We need to let everyone in this state know how much tax revenue these individuals are wasting, the innocent victims being abused by their unconstitutional laws and how they just don’t seem to give a  **** about reality or science. It is the only way to stop these idiots beyond suing the state.

 

Of course they are going to expand this program like there’s no tomorrow. The only reporting required in the law is how many people they are able to convict of DUIs, so their goal is quite clear.

 

When you also consider that Rick Jones began pushing for saliva testing (this is his 3rd attempt) immediately after the MMMA and further after the Supreme Court ruled patients are allowed to drive with THC in their systems, the intent is clear. They want to target law-abiding medical marijuana patients because right now they can’t touch many of us (besides extracts, illegal transport, arresting cause they feel like it, ect.) There's absolutely no other reason for this bill. Cannabis is the easiest drug to detect due to scent, and non-card holders are already screwed just from odor. And how do you differentiate between intoxicating effects of schedule I versus schedule II/III? You can't... so is anyone who seems a little out of it going to be swabbed too?

 

I'm starting to get what reps mean by creating a smaller government. They want smaller gov for them and their businesses so they can continue to destroy our world and harm others for profit, but when it comes to the people... well they want us all to be slaves in a police state.

Edited by Alphabob
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Of course, but when the republicans are running they always claim the government is ‘breathing down our backs’ and how they will fix it. Then they go and do the exact opposite unless something directly benefits them or their backers. What it seems like they are doing now is making a final power grab because their system is about to crumble. The prison system is largely funded by marijuana and won't survive without alternative funding or significant down-sizing. Maybe we just need some real accountability in governance. Like capitalism, if you deregulate and remove checks-n-balances there’s going to be corruption. Right now I'd say a technocratic system elected without political contributions would be our best bet. If that isn't possible then anyone not in the 1% needs to start pooling their money together just like the 1% is and get people elected on the right side. It's what Bernie is doing and seems to be the only civil solution besides lengthy court battles.

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"It’s not immediately clear what counties would be selected for the program, and state police did not respond Friday to a request for comment. The legislation requires that a participating county must have at least one law enforcement agency with a certified drug recognition expert.

As of late 2015, Michigan had 84 specially trained officers working in various agencies who were trained to identify physical signs of impairment during roadside stops. Under the new program, those officers would carry a swab-based detection kit with them.

The program would costs state police roughly $30,000, according to the House Fiscal Agency, including $6,000 a piece for a series of “oral fluid drug detection apparatuses” and about $25 for each roadside kit."

 

 

http://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/politics/2016/06/10/drugged-driving-bills-pot-dispensary/85693836/

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Does anyone know if (like alcohol) you have to fail a field sobriety test before submitting to a swab/breathalizer/blood draw?

 

It is unclear how their procedure will turn out. The law states that they can demand a swab if there is reasonable cause to believe you have any amount of schedule I in your system, not that you show signs of intoxication. Is smelling like cannabis reasonable cause? Is being a medical marijuana patient reasonable cause? I'd say yes, those are reasonable causes for me to believe that someone has a spec of THC in their system and LEO is a lot less reasonable then I am. What is for sure is that refusing a swab will be identical to refusing a preliminary breathalyzer, so there are similarities between them.

 

As for where they will be targeting, there's only been speculation so far. I-75 is a hot spot for them so they are likely to include at least some counties where trafficking is the highest. I would assume Oakland and Wayne are near the top of the list, possibly Kent and Sanilac also. Remember that their only reporting is how many DUI convictions they get with this program. Not how many people were wrongly accused, how many people got their charges dismissed, how many people were actually intoxicated/sober, ect; just how many lives ruined. So they would benefit from choosing the most populated counties. There's many kinds of 'evil' out there, but preying on the sick and poor is pretty close to the top.

Edited by Alphabob
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