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U.S. Conference of Mayors asks Obama for flexibility on marijuana

The United States Conference of Mayors unanimously passed a historic, bipartisan resolution Monday calling on the Obama administration to stop interfering with state and local efforts to deal with the problems caused by marijuana prohibition. “This resolution will amplify the voices of local officials and voters who are sick and…

Colombia sees rise in use of ‘zombie’ drug that affects victims for hours

Last year in Colombia, over 1,200 people were dosed by criminals with a so-called “zombie” drug that makes victims compliant and happy to say or do anything their captors tell them to. Frighteningly, according to a report in The Global Post on Monday, the use of this drug is on…

Supreme Court ruling could lead to far fewer mandatory minimum sentences

The Supreme Court ruled Monday that juries must be consulted on any evidence that might lead to the triggering of a mandatory minimum prison sentence, striking down an earlier ruling that allowed judges to make that determination on their own. The court’s findings in Alleyne v. United States (PDF) hold…

Calls to decriminalize drugs dominate Elton John’s HIV conference

Former Polish president Aleksander Kwasniewski on Sunday called for drug decriminalisation at the opening of a global conference to curb the spread of HIV, with backing from the Elton John AIDS Foundation. The four-day conference in Vilnius focuses on “harm reduction” or programmes that seek to help intravenous drug users,…

Study: Blacks 9 times more likely than whites to be arrested for pot in NYC

The New York Civil Liberties Union published a research report (PDF) Thursday detailing the vast racial disparities in the state’s marijuana enforcement regime, finding that black New Yorkers are, in some parts of the state, up to 9 times more likely to be arrested for pot than whites. The NYCLU’s…

Microsoft alum promises to ‘mint millionaires’ with future U.S.-Mexico marijuana trade

Former Microsoft corporate strategy manager Jamen Shively (pictured, center) will appear Thursday with former Mexican president Vicente Fox at a press conference announcing the unofficial start of the legal U.S.-Mexico marijuana trade, even though such a trade is still very much imaginary. “Let’s go big or go home,” Shively told…

Northern California police chief pitches plan to allow residents to double medicinal pot gardens

A new proposal from Healdsburg’s police chief could allow medical marijuana users there to double the size of their medicinal gardens from what is allowed by state law. Under the new regulations, patients would be able to cultivate up to 12 mature plants and 24 immature ones. Put forward by…

Canadian drug policy experts recommend decriminalizing all drugs

In a report issued Thursday (PDF), a group of Canadian drug policy experts at the Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Applied Research in Mental Health and Addiction recommend that the Harper administration immediately take up decriminalization of all drugs as the first step toward fundamentally reforming the nation’s drug war…

NYPD data: Whites much more likely to be carrying drugs and guns than minorities

In a detailed analysis (PDF) of publicly available New York Police Department data on crime in 2012, the New York Office of the Public Advocate revealed Wednesday that white people were much more likely to be carrying drugs and guns than minorities, despite making up a tiny fraction of individuals…

California Senate moves to crush medical marijuana profits

A bill approved by the California state senate on Monday would further restrict the state’s medical marijuana industry by requiring the end of all for-profit sales of the drug to licensed patients and caregivers. The proposed law would go further than the state attorney general’s non-binding guidelines issued in 2008,…

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