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Marijuana’s Money Trail: Four Billionaires

“Marijuana-Free Florida” presents the fourth in a series of public forums against the constitutional amendment to permanently expand the legalization of medical marijuana in the State of Florida to be held from 5:00 until 8:00 PM on September 26 at The Al Katz Center, 5710 Cortez Road, in the Cortez Commons shopping center.

The following week, on October 5, medical marijuana and substance abuse addictions expert Dr. Jessica Spencer will give two public lectures open to the community on “The Hidden Truths of the Corporate Medical Marijuana Cash Crop Industry to Your Neighborhood and Family” at 2:00 PM and 7:00 PM, donations appreciated.

Who would believe that some of the wealthiest men on earth actually care about alleviating human suffering through medical marijuana when indeed their amassed fortunes could bring immeasurable relief to the masses in need? Billionaires including global investor George Soros, former CEO of Progressive Insurance Peter Lewis, former CEO of Men’s Wearhouse George Zimmer, and founder of the University of Phoenix and the Apollo Group John Sperling, are the money momentum behind the dangerous and relentless push to expand marijuana legalization through constitutional amendments state by state, even in states like Florida where medical marijuana is already legalized via three separate laws.

Multiple billionaires are pushing marijuana expansion amendments to state constitutions, but why? Who profits and how from such expansion amendments? First of all, medical marijuana is a massive lucrative cash crop industry that has proven to be an open door to detrimental societal changes and criminality, including vast human trafficking, theft of water resources, invasive marijuana grow sites into neighborhoods, and uncontrolled proliferation of stores in neighborhood shopping centers where marijuana is dispensed freely by young people who have no medical or pharmacological training, as does a physician or pharmacist.

In states such as Oregon and California, marijuana shops can be located across the street from schools and next door to churches. Children can watch adults consuming marijuana in attractive edible forms like gummy bears, while the children are on recess on school playgrounds. Vast water resources are illegally diverted to feed ever-thirsty marijuana plants, each of which consumes five gallons of water per day, and beautiful ranches are being turned into hundreds of acres of marijuana grow sites, which emit an unmistakable putrid smell all day and all night.

Once marijuana is legalized by constitutional amendment, as being sought in the State of Florida, your neighborhood, no matter where it is, can become a marijuana grow site without local control, and the putrid pervasive smell of marijuana will inescapably fill the air 24 hours per day. With constitutional legalization, traffic accidents increase, public health decreases, workplace productivity declines, and the billionaires stand to greatly profiteer on the backs of the hard-working public. In fact, the marijuana cash crop industry will exceed in human misery the cotton cash crop industry and is currently being promoted as a massive money flow for corporate investors.

Hear the facts behind the facts. Gather literature, and watch films on this urgent constitutional issue now before the Florida public.

Women involved in the highly-profitable marijuana cash-crop industry are paid extra to harvest cannabis topless and frequently suffer sexual abuse. Ads for women workers describe them as sex objects: “looking for new help, topless extra” or “Need a good looking trimmer that is … open minded [for sex acts].”

When California legalized medical marijuana, the public had no idea that the State’s rivers would be dried up due to each marijuana plant consuming five gallons of water per day, multiplied by 50,000 marijuana farms just in California and millions of thirsty plants, according to Scientific American. In fact, water consumption by every marijuana plant exceeds water consumption of the migrant workers, including children, who prepare marijuana for market.

Marijuana is a profit-driven cash crop, as was cotton, grown outdoors on plantations, often owned by interstate corporations, and in windowless, isolated factories, where migrants can labor under slave-like conditions. In California’s medical marijuana industry, migrants have been shot and murdered, execution-style, by the plantation owner on a rural 800-acre farm.

Throughout the world, in the UK and elsewhere, many thousands of impoverished children have been found imprisoned as slaves in marijuana factories. In Florida, the first marijuana factory is hidden from public view in a rural area, surrounded by barbed wire, protected by armed guards, and secured by numerous checkpoints where cell phones are confiscated.

The decision to expand marijuana in Florida has limitless ramifications for expanded profiteering with inestimable social costs, heightened human trafficking, escalating crimes against women and children, enormous environmental damage through drought created by millions of ever-thirsty marijuana plants and gigantic electric consumption in marijuana factories, and deteriorating health conditions of migrant worker families and marijuana consumers exposed to high levels of toxic pesticides used on the plants and effectively unregulated by under-staffed agencies.

EDITORS NOTE: Suggested donation for this event is $7.00. Please contact The Al Katz Center: 941-313-9239. This event includes materials, speakers, and films.

Florida: Anti-Marijuana ‘Vote No On 2’ releases new video ‘Budtenders’

The “Vote No On 2” Campaign has released a new TV ad titled “Budtenders.” The ad “demonstrates the complete sham that Amendment 2 is by visually showing that there are no Pharmacists or Pharmacies involved in ‘medical marijuana,’” according to a Vote No On 2 email.

You can view our new ad “Budtenders”:

Budtender Mason Davila from Ontario, Oregon

Budtender Mason Davila from Ontario, Oregon.

StonerDays.com defines Budtender as:

noun 1. a person who weighs out portions of medical marijuana and provides information about the suggested use of each product to his or her patient/members 2. a volunteer at a medical marijuana collective.

ABOUT VOTE NO ON 2

Vote No on 2 is a grassroots campaign bringing the truth about Amendment 2 to the voters of Florida.Our coalition includes members of law enforcement, business leaders, Constitutional law attorneys,doctors, other medical professionals, parents and Floridians from all walks of life. We know that Amendment 2 is simply a guise to legalize pot smoking in Florida and our goal is to point out the loopholes and explain why this Amendment is bad for Florida.

Click here to learn more about Vote No On 2.

RELATED VIDEO: Three things…

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is of Budtender Jason McDaniel behind the counter at Sticky Medz in Los Angeles, California.

Teens Who Use Marijuana at Risk of Schizophrenia

In a pre-clinical study, researchers from Western University in Ontario, Canada, studied the effects of long-term exposure to THC in both adolescent and adult rats.

They found changes in behavior as well as in brain cells in the adolescent rats that were identical to those found in schizophrenia. These changes lasted into early adulthood long after the initial THC exposure.

The young rats were “socially withdrawn and demonstrated increased anxiety, cognitive disorganization, and abnormal levels of dopamine, all of which are features of schizophrenia,” according to the article. The same effects were not seen in the adult rats.

“With the current rise in cannabis use and the increase in THC content, it is critically important to highlight the risk factors associated with exposure to marijuana, particularly during adolescence,” the researchers warn.

Read Medical News Today story here. Read study abstract in the journal Cerebral Cortex here.

PARENTAL WARNING: Children’s ‘Nugtella’ laced with Marijuana

National Families in Action reports:

California was the first state to legalize marijuana for medical use in 1996. But that did not happen spontaneously. Major investors began pouring money into organizations working to legalize marijuana in the early 1990s, just as marijuana use among high-school students reached its lowest levels since the Monitoring the Future survey began in 1975.

In 1991, 3% of eighth-grade students, 9% of tenth-grade students, and 14% of twelfth-grade students used marijuana in the past month. Today, eighth-grade use has doubled (7%), and tenth- and twelfth-grade use (15% and 21%, respectively) has nearly doubled. What made that happen?

Legalization proponents have hammered home the idea that marijuana is A) medicine and B) harmless. As increasingly more states have passed legislation based on these ideas, young people have gotten the message. Some 79% of high-school seniors believed smoking marijuana regularly was harmful in 1991. Today, only 32% do, the fewest since the survey began. Similar declines in belief in harm have occurred among younger students as well.

The 23 states that legalized marijuana as medicine gave birth to a commercial marijuana industry which creates and promotes products, including marijuana-infused foods, that appeal to teenagers. “Nugtella,” pictured above, is just one example. Others include marijuana-infused, multi-flavored “soft” drinks, gummi bears, and lollipops.

Says Stu Gitlow, MD, immediate past president of the American Society of Addiction Medicine and science advisory board member of SAM: Smart Approaches to Marijuana, in a press release about the survey SAM issued this morning, “Medical research is very clear that marijuana is both addictive and harmful. One in six adolescents that use marijuana develop an addiction, and use is associated with lower IQ, lower grades, and high dropout rates in that same population.”

Which makes all the more disturbing another finding from the survey: 1 in 16 high school seniors uses marijuana daily. At 6%, seniors’ daily marijuana use is now higher than their daily cigarette use (5.5%) and daily alcohol use (2%).

Read Monitoring the Future Survey here. Read SAM press release here.

Tobacco Use Decreased by 64% among High School Students Since 1997 while Marijuana Use Doubled

A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) analyzes tobacco and marijuana use among white, African American, and Hispanic students in grades 9 through 12 from 1997 to 2013. The data come from CDC’s Youth Risk Behavior Surveys (YRBS) conducted every two years.

The good news is that student use of cigarettes and cigars has declined 64 percent, from 20.5 percent in 1997 to 7.4 percent in 2013. The bad news is that marijuana use more than doubled during that time, from 4.2 percent to 10.2 percent.

Further, marijuana use among students who also used cigarettes or cigars increased from 51.2 percent to 62.4 percent over that time, with even higher increases towards the end of the study period among African American and Hispanic students.

The use of marijuana among those who used cigarettes or cigars did not change among Hispanic students from 1997 to 2007, but then escalated from 54.9 percent to 73.6 percent in 2013. African American students’ marijuana use among those who used cigarettes and cigars held steady until 2009, but increased even further, from 66.4 percent then to 82 percent in 2013.

When tobacco and marijuana are used together, the likelihood of harm to individuals, including cognitive, psychological, respiratory, and addiction problems, also increases.

The substantial 64 percent decline in cigarette and cigar use among students took place as the result of evidence-based strategies such as increasing tobacco product prices, adopting comprehensive smoke-free policies, and conducting national public education media campaigns.

Read “Cigarette, Cigar, and Marijuana Use Among High School Students—United States—1997-2013” here.

Marijuana use up 12% nationwide during first year of legalization in Colorado, Washington

The 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, released yesterday, shows regular marijuana use among Americans ages 12 and older jumped 12 percent nationwide during the first year legalization was implemented in Colorado and Washington. Regular use increased among all ages: click here or on image above to see increases among ages 12-17, ages 18-25, and ages 26 & older.

Better-Landscape-Photo-1024x576

Places with More Marijuana Dispensaries Have More Marijuana-Related Hospitalizations

In a first analysis of the impact of marijuana dispensary locations on health, researchers mapped California hospital discharge data that had a primary or secondary code for marijuana dependence or abuse to patients’ zip codes. Then they cross-referenced the data to the number of dispensaries in those zip codes.

Hospital marijuana codes increased from 17,469 in 2001 to 68,408 in 2012 in the state. More than 85 percent were coded as abuse rather than dependence. Nearly all (99.2 percent) were secondary codes, meaning patients were hospitalized for something other than marijuana (like someone hospitalized with internal injuries after crashing while driving under the influence of alcohol.)

“Each additional dispensary per square mile in a zip code was associated with a 6.8 percent increase in hospitalizations linked to marijuana abuse and dependence.” The density and location of dispensaries paralleled the density and location of liquor stores, which tend to be located in areas with lower household income and lower educational attainment.

Read Science Daily summary of the study here.

Arming Children: The Islamic State and Mexico’s Gulf Cartel

There is much talk about disarming law abiding American citizens by the Obama administration but little done to stop the use of children as hit-men by Mexican drug cartels  and soldiers by the Islamic State.

This is the worst form of child abuse – using children to kill, slaughter, behead, assassinate.

child soldier of Islamic StatePamela Geller in her column “Generation Kill: The Child Soldiers of the Islamic State” writes:

Look at this child [right]. Remember him. This is your children’s future.

This is who your children will face in the future. These children are being trained to kill. These children are being schooled in the sharia and jihad. Our children are being disarmed and misled about the genocidal ideology behind this war. Sheeps to slaughter.

The below video, called “The Cubs of Dijla” in a reference to the young boys being indoctrinated and groomed to fight, shows children as the clip’s primary speakers. They deliver monologues and recite verses of the Quran, marking the first time the Islamic State has depicted boys—one as young as three—speaking at length directly into the camera.

gulf drug cartel child killerMia De Graff writing for the Daily Mail reports:

These are the baby-faced members of Mexico’s menacing Gulf Cartel [right].

In an unprecedented series of photos, scores of hitmen have unmasked themselves to apparently prove: ‘We aren’t afraid to show our faces, we want you to see nothing but the Gulf Cartel.’

Shockingly, some look as young as 12.

The Gulf Cartel is one of Mexico’s oldest, dating back to the Prohibition era.

With roots in the United States, Europe, West Africa, Asia, Central America, and South America, the organization wields significant power over the drug-trafficking trade – despite losing ground to rivals in recent years.

Read more.

Here is a video about Mexican drug cartels:

The use of children as killers is as bad as using children as sex slaves. Evil is evil. Not to call this evil is a travesty. Sadly the Gulf Cartel and Islamic State continue to recruit, train and use children to kill — these are the baby-faced hit men of the 21st Century.

Man High on Synthetic Marijuana Decapitates Wife and more…

Breitbart reports:

A Phoenix man who authorities say decapitated his wife and two dogs and gouged his own eye out let out a moaning howl in court after a prosecutor told a judge what the man had allegedly done, according to video released Monday.

Kenneth Wakefield appeared in court Saturday after being released from a hospital and booked into jail on suspicion of murder and animal cruelty. He had a large bandage in place of a missing hand, which police said he had cut off.

A judge set bond for Wakefield at $2 million after a prosecutor called the 43-year-old, who has a history of mental illness, a danger to the community.

In the video, Wakefield raises his right hand to his face, lowers his head and emits a two-second howl after the prosecutor said Wakefield repeatedly stabbed and decapitated Trina Heisch.

In a court document released Monday, police say 49-year-old Heisch was stabbed multiple times in her torso and had “defensive wounds to her hands and arms.” Investigators also found several bloody knives and a large amount of blood throughout the couple’s central Phoenix apartment.

Wakefield acknowledged stabbing her multiple times before decapitating her, police said. He also told investigators he smoked marijuana and synthetic marijuana about an hour before the attack on Heisch.

“He said he was trying to get the evil out of Trina,” police said in the probable cause statement.

Wakefield did not have an attorney when he appeared in court, but the judge, Commissioner Alysson Abe, said one would be appointed for him before his next scheduled appearance on Friday.

Read more.

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is courtesy of WPTV Channel 5 in West Palm Beach, FL.

Opposition to Legalization Up 8 Points — State Attorneys General Collaborating with Marijuana Industry

The Gallup Poll reports that support for marijuana legalization dropped by 7 points, down to 51 percent from 58 percent last year. The 51 percent support for legalization is similar to the 50 percent support for legalization in 2011 and 2012.

Opposition is greatest among conservatives (31 percent), highest among liberals (73 percent), and in between among moderates (58 percent).

Opposition is also greatest in the South (45 percent) and Midwest (47 percent); while highest on the East and West coasts (57 percent each).

Gallup says support for legalization has clearly increased over the past decade, but the question is whether momentum will build or level off with a bare majority supporting it.

Read Gallup story here.


Marijuana Industry: “’Monumental Meeting’ Culminates with Call for National Marijuana Business Standards”

The turning point for holding the tobacco industry accountable for the damage it does to people, especially teenagers, occurred with the 1998 Tobacco Settlement. As Attorney General for the state of Mississippi from 1988 to 2004, Mike Moore filed a lawsuit against 13 tobacco companies claiming they should reimburse the state for the cost of treating Mississippians with smoking-related illnesses. Nearly all other state attorneys general joined the lawsuit, which culminated in a settlement where tobacco companies agreed to pay $264 billion to the states over 25 years and an unspecified amount in perpetuity afterwards.

As part of the agreement, the tobacco industry promised to end marketing to underage children. No more Joe Camel, a logo recognized by as many 6-year-olds as Mickey Mouse. Ending the power of advertising directed to children paid off. Past 30-day cigarette use plummeted from 19 percent of 8 grade students in 1998 to 4 percent today, from 28 percent of 10th grade students to 7 percent today, and from 35 percent of 12th-grade students to 14 percent today, according to the Monitoring the Future Survey.

But it took a spectacular lawsuit to get there. Imagine what would have happened had the attorneys general instead invited the tobacco industry to sit down with them to develop a “Code of Responsible Practices.” Tobacco czars would have kept their money. State tax payers would still be bearing the cost of treating the tobacco-related illnesses of their citizens instead of the industry whose products made them sick. Joe Camel would have given birth to a second generation of symbols that entice kids into smoking. Teenage smoking almost certainly would have stayed the same or increased. The men and women who served as state attorneys general in the 1990s have saved literally millions of lives by preventing kids from smoking cigarettes.

That’s why we are having such a hard time wrapping our heads around a news story from yesterday’s Marijuana Business Daily. It reports that the Conference of Western Attorneys General invited the marijuana industry to take part in its annual meeting in Hawaii last week (conference materials pictured above) to open a dialogue about how to work together. One outcome of the meeting was the decision to form a committee of attorneys general and marijuana czars to develop, you guessed it, a Code of Responsible Practices “to help govern cannabis companies and promote the trade.”

An industry spokesman “called the conference ‘monumental,’ saying the fact that attorneys general from states where cannabis isn’t even legal are willing to speak to those in the industry is yet another indicator that the marijuana movement is making strides.” He “also said that the sense he got from the 20 attorneys general is that legalization – in some form or another – already feels like a foregone conclusion to them.”

This from people who take an oath to support the federal Constitution and the supremacy of federal law.

Read Marijuana Business Daily article here.

Why is Adolescent Marijuana Use Higher in States That Legalize Medical Marijuana than in States That Don’t?

The June 17th issue of The Marijuana Report summarized a new study, published by Lancet, that finds marijuana use does not increase among high school students when a state legalizes medical marijuana. Researchers analyzed data from the Monitoring the Future Survey about past-month marijuana use among 8th, 10th, and 12th grade students between 1991 and 2014.

Although use does not increase after legalization, a key finding of the study—ignored by most of the press—is that use was already higher in states before such laws were passed than in states that have never legalized medical marijuana.

The question is why? What is different about these states from states that haven’t legalized medical pot?

“These states might differ from the others on common factors yet to be identified (eg. norms surrounding marijuana use or marijuana availability),” say the researchers. “Investigation of these factors is warranted.”

adolesent marijuana use

There is no doubt that nationally, taking all states together, marijuana use increased dramatically between 1991 and 2014. As shown in the above graphic, past-month use doubled among 8th graders, nearly doubled among 10th graders, and increased more than 50 percent among 12th graders.

The Marijuana Reports states, “We need to understand what drove these increases.”

At the same time, the perception that regular marijuana use is harmful decreased among 8th graders from 83.8 percent in 1991 to 58.9 percent in 2014, among 10th graders from 82.1 percent to 45.4 percent, and among 12th graders from 78.6 percent to 36.1 percent. Why so many high school students believe regular marijuana use is harmless also needs to be understood so that this misperception can be corrected.

Read Lancet study here.

See Monitoring the Future past 30-day marijuana use data here.

See Monitoring the Future perception of harm data (8th graders) here, (10th graders)here, and (12th graders) here.

FLORIDA: City of Temple Terrace Promotes Marijuana Abuse

Lee Bell

Lee Bell, Chairman of the Temple Terrace Chamber of Commerce.

The Temple Terrace Chamber of Commerce allowed a float that promoted the use of marijuana be included in their 4th of July parade.

Operators of the float, which included a giant ten foot long joint, claimed that they are “promoting a safe and effective medicine”, yet the medical community does not stand behind smoked marijuana as a medicine. No major health association supports the use of smoked marijuana as a medicine.

Last week, the Journal of the American Medicine Association published a review of the research on marijuana as a medicine and concluded that there is insufficient evidence that marijuana is effective in the treatment of conditions for which some state laws are allowing its use.

Marijuana is not a harmless substance.

Someone who smokes marijuana regularly can have many of the same respiratory problems as cigarette smokers. Persistent coughing, bronchitis, and more frequent chest colds are possible symptoms. Regular use of marijuana compromises the ability to learn and to remember information by impairing the ability to focus, sustain, and shift attention.

Long term use reduces the ability to organize and integrate complex information. Research increasingly shows that intensive marijuana use often meets the technical requirements for addiction (or dependence). More and more studies are showing addictive qualities in the drug. Marijuana use is the number one reason adolescents
are admitted to treatment and ranks number two (behind alcohol) for adults.

Save Our Society From Drugs states:

It is disappointing that the Chamber allowed marijuana activists to further normalize the commercialization of marijuana. According to a new RAND study, adolescents who saw advertising for medical marijuana (like that in the Temple Terrace parade) were more likely to either report using marijuana or say that they planned to use the substance in the future.  Youth are bombarded by pro-drug messages on social media and we should be working to counter those messages and encourage our youth to make healthy choices.

Contrary to what Lee Bell, Chairman of the Temple Terrace Chamber of Commerce said, marijuana is illegal for all purposes here in Florida and should not be promoted. What other illegal activity would be okay to promote at a public family-friendly event?

If you would like to prevent the promotion of drug use from being included in future City of Temple Terrace events contact the City Mayor, City Council and Chamber of Commerce:

Is There a Middle Road between Marijuana Incarceration and Marijuana Legalization?

As part of its special series titled Race Matters, an investigation by Miami’s CBS4 News this week, provides an opportunity to consider new ways to think about marijuana and racial imbalances in the way our laws are enforced.

CBS4 News gathered and analyzed police records of every misdemeanor marijuana case in Miami Dade County between 2010 and 2014. They found:

  • Misdemeanor marijuana arrests accounted for ten percent of all cases filed in the court system.
  • Of 44,860 closed cases, 55 percent had African-American defendants, even though the county is less than 20 percent black.
  • Just two percent of these cases resulted in a conviction.
    • Of these, 74 percent were black.
  • Prosecutors dismissed or dropped 49 percent of these cases.
    • Of these, 56 percent were white.
  • The other 49 percent of cases were settled by a “withhold of adjudication,” an admission of guilt but not a formal conviction. However, the admission stays in a person’s permanent record, hurts his or her ability to find work or housing, and can prevent the person from enlisting in the military, receiving student loans, or becoming a citizen.
    • 65 percent of these were black.

CBS4 News writes, “Miami Dade Police Director JD Patterson and others in his department have argued police officers are not targeting blacks, they are merely making stops and arrests in neighborhoods with a high crime rate. And those neighborhoods just happen to be predominantly black.”

“Donald Jones, a constitutional and civil rights law professor at the University of Miami, says that may have been the initial intent of the police, but what has happened over time is that officers begin looking at everyone in those neighborhoods as a suspect and begin treating them differently as well. ‘It says to me that we’re profiling,’ Jones said. ‘We’ve gotten to a point where we criminalize whole communities. We see certain communities as being communities of criminals and we police them that way.’ Jones said it can have a chilling effect on the relationship between the police and the community. ‘It creates an atmosphere as if this is a different America,’ he said.”

We note that the 44,000-plus marijuana cases CBS4 News examined are only 10 percent of all cases that went through the Miami Dade County court system over the five-year period.

Proponents have built their case for marijuana legalization on racial inequities in the enforcement of marijuana laws like these in Miami Dade County, implying that legalizing pot will end unequal enforcement of the law. But the problem of racial disparities in the criminal justice system is much deeper than marijuana alone, as Professor Jones explains. Until we can see that, we won’t be able to change it effectively.

Few Americans believe that putting low-level marijuana offenders, black or white, in jail is appropriate. Few believe that straddling them with lifetime criminal records is fair or just. Judges in Miami Dade County hope the county commission will adopt a proposed civil citation ordinance that would give police the option of issuing a $100 ticket to marijuana offenders. This would keep them out of the criminal justice system and reduce costs to taxpayers.

We believe that is a good first step, but it does not go far enough. Despite denials from legalization proponents, marijuana is addictive. Some nine percent of people who try the drug will become addicted. The number rises to 17 percent if use begins in adolescence and to 25 percent to 50 percent for daily use. We would like to see a public health/social justice system replace the criminal justice system for low-level marijuana offenders. Its goal would be to provide public health and social services to them after they pay their fines. Such services would medically assess them to determine if they are addicted. Those who are would receive treatment. Those who aren’t would receive educational and social services to help them pursue more productive lives. Money saved from removing marijuana cases from the courts could be used to finance this system.

Or we could do away with the marijuana laws, legalize pot, and ignore the consequences. To do so would be to allow a commercial marijuana industry to emerge that will rival the tobacco and alcohol industries, as all three prey on children, the addicted, the poor and the vulnerable, while simply discarding the victims who can’t handle their products.

Read “Race Matters: Marijuana Cases Flood Court System” here.

THIS COLUMN IS COURTESY OF NATIONAL FAMILIES IN ACTION

National Families in Action and partners, Project SAM and the Treatment Research Institute, welcome our new readers. We hope you enjoy this weekly e-newsletter to keep up-to-date with all aspects of the marijuana story. Visit our website, The Marijuana Report.Org, and subscribe to the weekly e-newsletterThe Marijuana Report to learn more.

National Families in Action is a group of families, scientists, business leaders, physicians, addiction specialists, policymakers, and others committed to protecting children from addictive drugs. We advocate for:

  • Healthy, drug-free kids
  • Nurturing, addiction-free families
  • Scientifically accurate information and education
  • A nation free of Big Marijuana
  • Smart, safe, FDA-approved medicines developed from the cannabis plant (and other plants)
  • Expanded access to medicines in FDA clinical trials for children with epilepsy

Hollywood’s Drug Addicted Heroes

What passes for heroes in Hollywood is nothing but stupidity and criminality.

Marijuana-induced psychotic episodes triple in Germany since 2000

The number of patients admitted to hospitals with psychotic episodes after consuming marijuana in Germany has tripled since 2000, from 3,392 then to 11,708 in 2013. More than half were younger than age 25.

Andreas Bechdolf, chief of medicine for psychiatry and psychotherapy at the Berlin Urban Hospital, heads the Center for Early Intervention and Therapy, which focuses on adolescents. “The truly awful thing is that it often takes years before young adults with psychoses receive treatment, and many feel stigmatized,” he says. “It often takes another year from the point they start hearing voices before they finally take the step to open up to a doctor.”

His center works with several hundred patients ages 18 to 25 and the vast majority—from 80% to 90%—smoked marijuana regularly before their treatment began. Most were addicted.

Adolescents who smoke marijuana on a regular basis before age 15 are six time more likely to suffer from psychosis in later years. At first, they are unable to concentrate or put thoughts together. The meaning of once-familiar words is obscured. “Perceptions begin to change. Colors become more intense. A car that is 10 meters away might seem to be right in front of you.”

These early symptoms develop over three or four years, Bechdolf says. Then “acoustic hallucinations” appear, voices that unveil secrets or continuously comment on a person’s shortcomings. They feel they are being followed or spied on.

“Those who stop smoking pot have a very good chance of being healed,” Bechdolf says. But continued therapy on an outpatient basis after release from the hospital is key, he points out.

Read the full article here.