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Mexico elections: failure of drug war leaves nation at the crossroads

On 1 July, Mexicans will vote in vital presidential elections. But the issue no candidate dares to address is the cartel violence tearing the nation apart. One after another, Mexico’s presidential candidates sat in silence amid the grand setting of Chapúltepec Castle while, across the room, the leader of the…

Supreme Court: Older convictions subject to new crack sentencing guidelines

In a 5-4 decision (PDF) on Thursday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that reduced sentences for crack cocaine, approved by Congress in 2010, must be applied to individuals with pending legal cases at the time of its passage if they had not yet been sentenced. The nation’s top judges took…

Top DEA agent won’t admit heroin more harmful than marijuana

During a House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing on Wednesday, Drug Enforcement Administrator Michele Leonhart repeatedly refused to admit that anything was more addictive or harmful than marijuana. Democratic Rep. Jared Polis of Colorado pressed Leonhart on whether illegal drugs like methamphetamine and crack, as well as legal prescription drugs, caused greater…

New York pot decriminalization goes up in smoke

A bill supported by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) that would have decriminalized possessing small quantities of marijuana will not pass during this legislative session due to staunch opposition from Republicans in the state Senate. The current legislative session ends Thursday, and lawmakers are not due to return until…

DEA adds 26 ‘synthetic marijuana’ substances to government blacklist

The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) said Tuesday that it expects to add 26 new synthetic drugs to its list of temporary Schedule I substances, an emergency authority that’s used to control little-known, poorly researched new substances that the agency feels pose a threat to public health. In the Food and…

Study: Chemicals in baby soaps can trigger marijuana-positive drug tests

A study (PDF) featured in the June 2012 print edition of the medical journal Clinical Biochemistry claims that tiny traces of certain baby soaps and shampoos can trigger drug test results showing the presence of marijuana, which can in some cases cause state authorities to remove a child from parental…

‘The Wire’ actor says stop-and-frisk cops mistake him for a real dealer

Actor J.D. Williams, who played drug dealer Preston “Bodie” Broadus on HBO’s critically-acclaimed series The Wire, says he is often stopped by police who mistakenly recognize him as someone they’ve busted before. Capital New York caught up with Williams on Sunday while he was protesting the New York Police Department’s…

Study finds medical marijuana has no impact on teen drug abuse

A working paper published Monday (PDF) claims that, despite the insistence of numerous U.S. officials, legalizing medical marijuana had no distinguishable effect on teen drug abuse rates in the surrounding communities. Drawing upon data from 13 states from 1993 – 2009, professors from Montana State University, the University of Oregon and…

Rahm backs smaller penalties for Chicago pot users

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel (D) said in a release on Thursday that he’s decided to back a proposal that would decriminalize marijuana possession, lowering the penalty for getting caught with up to 15 grams of the drug to a ticket instead of an arrest. Emanuel, President Barack Obama’s former chief of…

Meghan McCain says she doesn’t use marijuana… frequently

The daughter of former Republican presidential nominee John McCain says she supports the legalization of marijuana, but doesn’t use the drug — at least not “frequently.” Meghan McCain on Tuesday explained to NBC host Jay Leno why she made the decision to support marijuana legalization in her latest book, America,…

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