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Advocates of marijuana legalization planning new ballot measure in California. Is it too soon?


Is California ready for another vote on marijuana legalization?

Talk back LA The Times' John Hoeffel went to Berkeley over the weekend to hear advocates talk about asking voters to consider the issue again later this year:

The drive to put another marijuana legalization initiative on the California ballot took a step forward Saturday when activists from across the state squeezed into a crowded conference center here to launch the debate over writing the next ballot measure.

The campaign for Proposition 19, which lost 54% to 46% in November, wants to start drafting a new initiative in the spring and to complete it by July, turning then to the expensive and time-consuming task of building support and qualifying it for the November 2012 ballot.

Should California again consider legalizing marijuana? Share your view here.

Photo credit: Los Angeles Times

Comments () | Archives (32)

Of course Californians should resconsider new Marijuana Intiatives because 1) The War on Drugs is a failed effort in which tax payers spend millions of dollars annually to inprision nonviolent offenders.
2) Cannabis has been proven itself time and time again that it has significant medical value in alleviating pain and in cell managment.
3) The Government should have NO SAY in what AMERICANS DO AND DO NOT PUT IN TO THEIR BODY

Is it TOO soon to restore liberty & freedom to chose? The war on drugs like many federal assaults on liberty and choice has corrupted law enforcement the world over. The confiscation rules make a mockery of the slogan "To Protect and Serve"

Should California again consider legalizing marijuana?

Of course it should.

Cannabis is much safer than WATER. (In 2007, there were 3,443 fatal unintentional drownings in the U.S.)

The prohibition of this plant has made it worth more than gold, when it should be worth about the same as cotton. Of course organized crime steps up to get a peice of the action when there is so much money at stake.

Plus there is the issue of personal freedom. We have the right to purchase and consume unlimited amounts of alcohol and tobacco. Why not hemp?

It makes no sense to continue on the path of prohibition, unless you are one of the ones who's making money on this.

Potheads at it again. Gotta have your mind bending weed. Just another drug to escape life and have an excuse to not be responsible.

It's great John Hoeffel came to Berkeley. Berkeley has an incredibly sane relationship with medical marijuana and their clinics are incredibly safe. If the government hadn't criminalized this, in the manner in which they have (strengthening Cartels), marijuana could be sold (like all other medications) in pharmacies. Medical marijuana is legal. Period. The people already voted on this issue and it should not be on the government's drug price fixing list because it is an herb and clearly has medicinal properties. Of course, the government, in all their idiotic glory has prevented scientific studies of marijuana - they would prefer we have brain damage from their glam psychiatric medications or addictions to extremely dangerous drugs like oxycontin and vicodin The bill needs to be written better this time and should address how to sell medical marijuana. Pharmacies merely apply for a license. The crooks should merely focus on how to tax it. The federal government should apply a VAT tax and focus on their war with the Cartels now. That's how you solve it. Once the morons in government get this, we can move on to more pressing issues: JOBS and our shabby culture. Everyone should vote to legalize marijuana so that we don't have to listen to the crooks on this topic any longer. Don't give them an opportunity to get on television and avoid doing their jobs. Drag them out of Bedrock.

A major issue is ensuring that the medical marijuana is safe and that it is regulated. People have no idea what is actually in their marijuana unless they grow it which they should be permitted to do. Imagine if the government decided to add sunflowers to its drug pricing list.

All the little scared politically correct politicians should just continue to drool over the taxes and leave We The People alone.

The bill should be specific, making city or county hospital pharmacies the exclusive sellers of the medicinal marijuana and it can be produced only by certified growers.

Should California again consider legalizing marijuana? Absolutely. Our cannabis policies (especially Federal) are absurd.

Is it too soon? How do you mean? Marijuana prohibition has lasted almost 75 years! Its not soon enough! We need reform now!

The sham continues. This whole drive is only to legalize people getting high. If in fact this was only for medicinal purposes it would be acquired in a pharmacy. You wouldn't be able to purchase it in a "head shop", come in 42 flavors and different potency's or available with the multitude of exotic smoking bongs.

There are more 20 year olds buying weed for a "football shoulder injury" or for "stress" than there is cancer patients. If you want marijuana for pain take Marinol. . .

There's already too many dope heads in So. Cal, why add more?

Aww, c'mon, Californians. Take your fingers out of the dike. The holes keep getting bigger and it's gonna break anyway...it's just a matter of time. The tyranny of the majority is coming to an end and personal freedom (with the accompanying requirement of responsibility) is on the rise. With a simple election, millions of "criminals" will, overnight, become not-criminals.

Gee, I'm feeling so Egyptian right now.

yes, it is time to make it legal

@ Pete and all prohibitionists,
whether you think the plant is despicable, useless, or dangerous; marijuana is here and has been since well before Jesus. The only time in the history of man that it has caused any problems is in the last 80 years... Since prohibition.
People want it, regardless of whether you do or don't. It is a simple case of CAPITALISM. There is an insatiable demand for it, therefore there is supply for it. Becauuse of it's illegal status, we have employed thousand upon thousand of criminals with one of the most profitable products in the world.
It is time to take back the power and fight off the cartels and inject our economy with what many will call the "Green Rush." --Another thing, answer me this prohibitionists, Mainstream availability of marijuana has been available in storefronts for almost a decade now. Have we come crumbling down? Are dui's through the roof with pot? Are their marijuana fiends camping out in the streets because they are so addicted they lost it all? Is crime up? If you look at a picture of Oakland and Berkley 10 years ago and then look at it now... You will see what common sense marijuana policy does.

Hey Pete, this is about recreational use. No one is talking about medical marijuana. Good thing you don't smoke though, god knows what you'd be talking about then.

Bob, this is for recreational purposes, not medical.

chatmandu, you sound like a fun person to be around.

Yes, it should be on the ballot again, so that it will lose again. The more that Californians see about the pro-pot activists - and how extreme and irrational many of them are - they more that we will turn away from the profit-centered legalization theory. The use of marijuana is already decriminalized in California - so it's the profiteers and the drug dealers who are pushing for legalization now. Let them come out into the light so that the people of California can get a good look at them....

Legalize it already.

It's 2011 and far overdue.

The people want it. The state needs it. The fed government and drug cartels (both the parma companies AND Mex drug kingpins) resist it.

^All signs that it's probably a good thing.

Resondingly, Yes !Yes !Yes! Decriminalization would take back all the power we give the drug dealers and we would all profit if it were taxed and regulated.

Bob- this has nothing to do with medical marijuana. A huge reason this bill didn't pass last time was because it prevented growers from selling their marijuana. ONLY dispensaries were going to be allowed to make sales. Naturally, much of the marijuana community voted against the bill.

If they rewrite the bill, and allow growers to be part of the business model, this bill WILL pass.

Pete Malloy: my husband, who died of kidney cancer recently, was prescribed Marinol by his oncologist.
When he did he advised us to, if we could, get some "real" weed as Marinol was according to him too ineffective-the THC in a high grade marijuana is much at both easing pain and helping appetite. We did and it was.

In addition it actually DOES help with stress and insomnia. As well as a host of other things. Bottom line, a person needn't be dying of cancer to merit using it. To continue banning it as a dangerous drug is absurd.

I believe it is very positive that the President acknowledges the "validity" of Cannabis/Medicinal Cannabis Legalization debate. Whenever the validity of the debate is recognized, such a "recognition" invariably implies that our side has a "valid argument"; this being so, it follows that our side (for Cannabis Legalization) has a very real possibility of winning this "perfectly legitimate debate", for otherwise it would not be a "debate". In particular, to say that Cannabis does not have medicinal properties is simply not even a "rational" thing to say. The same thing, of course, is that Cannabis is much safer than alcohol and absolute majority of pharmaceuticals. All this is true even if the President is "personally opposed" to legalization (at least for now). But we cannot sit on our butts and passively expect positive developments to occur. We must participate actively, write comments at the news articles, write to politicians, sign petitions, register to vote, etc. I specifically urge all the young people to talk to their parents and grandparents and educate them about Cannabis vs. alcohol and hard drugs. As the logical evidence in our favor inexorably accumulates, we will win this "perfectly legitimate" debate!

"The prohibition of this plant has made it worth more than gold, when it should be worth about the same as cotton."

I dunno bout dat; Maybe ten years ago, but the last time I checked the COMEX spot price on gold it was around $1300 per zone. If you pay that much for your cannibus, time to find a new dealer stat!

Reclassify, it does not belong in the same category as opiates.

The point of this post is even if you pass a law some old guard idiots will go with their same playbook, even with a losing team record.

The Orange County Board of Supervisors passed an ordinance on December 7th, 2010 calling for the ban of all medical marijuana dispensaries, collectives and cooperatives in unincorporated Orange County.
Supervisor John Moorlach
Supervisor Janet Nguyen
Supervisor Bill Campbell
Supervisor Shawn Nelson
Supervisor Pat Bates
Even though we passed a law reflecting the will of the people, these guy know better.
So even though I have a prescription, these guys know better than a doctor.
Even though we are in a recession these guys want to close small business down and get more people on the unemployed list, losing tax revenue in the process.
Moorlach's people even told me to drive to LA if I wanted to buy pot, which is illegal to do across county lines. Uninformed and using this a a political "points gathering" tool and ignoring the good things like jobs and tax revenue, these guys know better.
Please give them a call and explain that doing what they are doing hurts the community and goes against their political parties core values. Then vote them out next election.

"Potheads at it again. Gotta have your mind bending weed. Just another drug to escape life and have an excuse to not be responsible. "

Posted by: chatmandu

You talk as if killer alcohol isn't already quite legal ("gotta have your mind bending alcohol"). What's the point of trying to force people to use such a dangerous drug as booze to get a recreational high, creating powerful, violent local and int'l black markets in the process, severely undermining respect for the law and cooperation with police, twisting drug education into knots, further bankrupting public finances, and handing distribution of cannabis over to criminals, some of then evil enough to offer not just weed but also hard drugs to kids.
What has alcohol ever done to deserve it's lofty status as lord and master of far less violent cannabis users? What a pile the law is.

I really like what our sheriff mentioned: if you want to smoke a joint in your own home, go ahead. Just don't drive around afterwards and kill someone in the name of your own freedom to do whatever you want like the ALCU says!

It can never be too soon. Legalization will save lives here and in other countries. In California it will save billions in unnecessary arrests and prosecutions, and raise taxes that those who pay actually want to pay!

America is fighting costly, deadly and unwinable wars on three fronts - Afghanistan, Iraq and drugs. The costs of these wars has virtually destroyed the middle class and reduced to last on the list of first world countries.

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