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December 27, 2013

Baraboo News Republic: GROWING SUPPORT: Medical marijuana bills remain stalled, despite unprecedented backing

Posted by Gary Storck
Friday, December 27, 2013

Nice article from the Baraboo News Republic!

Source: Baraboo News Republic

December 27, 2013
GROWING SUPPORT: Medical marijuana bills remain stalled, despite unprecedented backing

Despite more support for the legislation than ever before among Wisconsin lawmakers, an ongoing effort to legalize marijuana for medical use in the state appears to be headed nowhere.

Even with unprecedented public support and backing from more members of the Legislature than at any time in history, sponsors admit the bill is likely to fail again.

So far, 21 states have legalized and established a system to regulate marijuana for medical purposes. In Wisconsin, a version of the bill failed in 2009 after a dramatic public showdown between state Sens. Leah Vukmir and Jon Erpenbach, and another version died in committee in 2012.

Erpenbach, D-Middleton, is the leading sponsor of the Jacki Rickert Medical Marijuana Act. The senator, whose district includes Baraboo and much of eastern Sauk County, said he found it disappointing that the bill has failed to advance under both Democratic and Republican leadership in the Legislature.

He said he remains dubious about the bill’s chances of success in the immediate future, but added public perception about the legislation is changing. He pointed to a Fox News poll taken in May that showed 85 percent of Americans support medical marijuana laws.

“The public is far ahead of lawmakers on this issue,” he said.

Continues at: http://www.wiscnews.com/baraboonewsrepublic/news/local/article_1f07c7d0-3255-5c25-ba4e-28a70137965e.html

Posted by Gary at 07:53 AM | Comments (0)

December 19, 2013

Waterloo / Marshall Courier: Letter: Gary Storck: Marijuana Referendum

Posted by Gary Storck
Thursday, December 19, 2013

My letter in response to a mocking commentary by the Waterloo / Marshall Courier on the proposed Dane County Advisory Marijuana Referendum.

Source: Waterloo / Marshall Courier
Pubdate: December 18, 2013
Author: Gary Storck

MARIJUANA REFERENDUM

The Courier is correct that nothing happened after 159,454 voters, a 75.49 percent margin, voted in favor of the Dane County medical marijuana advisory referendum passed in Nov. 2010, "Our view: Marijuana referendum a waste of time" on Dec. 11.

The referendum asked state lawmakers to pass a state medical cannabis law. It outpolled every other candidate or referendum in almost every ward in Dane County. A similar referendum in the City of River Falls, received 68 percent of the vote.

Nothing happened in 2002 and 2005 when Chamberlain Research polls found somewhere over 75-80 percent support among Wisconsinites for medical cannabis.

If The Courier were really doing its job as a functional member of the "Fourth Estate," it would be more concerned that state lawmakers not only did not follow their constituents wishes and pass legislation that has overwhelming support, but instead followed a divisive legislative agenda with no public support.

The Courier might also reflect on the racist roots and the lies that marijuana prohibition was based on in the first place, and the harms caused by millions of arrests for minor possession, not to mention the economic potential for the state if cannabis prohibition were repealed.

I was at the press conference to announce the new Dane County advisory referendum on legalization. Attitudes are changing nationwide. What is wrong with asking the public how they feel?

Is The Courier aware the state of Wisconsin held eight hearings in 1975 to ask the public what they thought about pot laws? Ninety-three percent of those who testified supported legalization and decriminalization. Guess what happened? Nothing.

Clearly the citizens have long been far ahead of the politicians and The Courier when it comes to cannabis, whether for medical, social or industrial use. We've grown accustomed to politicians letting us down. What's The Courier's excuse?

Gary Storck

director of communications,

Is My Medicine Legal Yet?

Madison

Posted by Gary at 07:49 PM | Comments (0)

December 18, 2013

Gary Storck: RELEASE: Over one thousand sign petition demanding WI Med Society apology for medical cannabis opposition

Posted by Gary Storck
Wednesday,December 18, 2013

Here's a press release I sent out to report passing the one thousand signature mark on the Change.org petition I created, "Wisconsin Medical Society and Dr. Michael M. Miller M.D.: Apologize for Obstructing Wisconsin Medical Marijuana Legislation"

For immediate release: Wednesday,December 18, 2013

Contact: Gary Storck 608-241-8922

OVER ONE THOUSAND SIGN PETITION DEMANDING WI MED SOCIETY APOLOGY FOR MEDICAL CANNABIS OPPOSITION

Online Petition challenges addiction doctor, WI Med Society, for blocking medipot

More than 1,000 people, mostly from Wisconsin, have signed a Change.org petition that asks the Wisconsin Medical Society and the addiction doctor who serves as their anti-cannabis spokesperson, Dr. Michael M. Miller, to follow the lead of CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta M.D., and apologize for their role in denying the legitimacy of medical cannabis and opposing Wisconsin medical cannabis legislation.

Dr. Gupta stated, "We have been terribly and systematically misled for nearly 70 years in the United States, and I apologize for my own role in that."

The full petition can be viewed here: (http://www.change.org/petitions/wisconsin-medical-society-and-dr-michael-m-miller-m-d-apologize-for-obstructing-wisconsin-medical-marijuana-legislation)

About the petition creator: Gary Storck is a lifetime glaucoma sufferer who has been using cannabis to treat symptoms of the disease for forty-one years and counting. Storck is the co-founder of the Madison and Wisconsin chapters of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws as well as past president of both groups. He is also a co-founder and the director of communications of the group, Is My Medicine Legal YET? (IMMLY.org).

-30-

Posted by Gary at 07:57 PM | Comments (0)

December 16, 2013

Capital Times: Madison Rep. Melissa Sargent supports full marijuana legalization

Posted by Gary Storck
Monday, December 16, 2013

Rep. Melissa Sargent not only delivered a very courageous speech at Harvest Fest 43 on Sun. Oct. 6 in support of full cannabis legalization, but recently resiterated that position on the Devil's Advocate radio show.

Madison Rep. Melissa Sargent supports full marijuana legalization

JACK CRAVER | The Capital Times | December 16, 2013

Mike Crute and Dominic Salvia, co-hosts of The Devil’s Advocates radio show (92.1 FM-The Mic), regularly invite politicians to their studio to discuss a wide range of policy issues.

But there is one question that every guest is expected to answer, no matter the news of the day: Do you support legalizing the recreational use of marijuana?

On Thursday, for the first time ever, a politician unconditionally answered in the affirmative.

“I would, yes,” said state Rep. Melissa Sargent, D-Madison.

“Hallelujah,” responded Crute. “We finally got a straight answer out of someone!”

Other politicians appearing on the show in the past have voiced support for relaxing some marijuana laws. Sen. Tammy Baldwin, for instance, noted her approval for medical marijuana and the decriminalization of pot possession.

But Sargent is the first to support to support full legalization.

The freshman legislator from Madison's north side explained that while she supported legislation to authorize medical cannabis, she believed that the resulting system might be one rife with loopholes, as people seeking to get a hold of high-quality reefer may fabricate medical woes to get a pot prescription.

“People are going out and getting medical marijuana cards because ‘Oh I have this one pain that you can’t prove’ because they want to be using marijuana recreationally as opposed to medically,” she said. “And who’s to define what’s recreation and what’s medical?”

That certainly has been a difficult question to answer in California, where anybody willing to say they suffer from anxiety or insomnia can get a prescription from a doctor to buy marijuana from one of the state's many dispensaries.

Other states with medical marijuana, however, have imposed much stricter regulations on prescriptions. Proponents of similar legislation in Wisconsin have said that the bill offers very specific rules to prevent a California-style situation from taking hold.

In the end, Sargent framed cannabis legalization as consistent with legal drinking:

“People can drink alcohol in our community and I think this is very similar to that. We have to bring ourselves back and really have these conversations about where is government’s responsibility in our lives?”

A recent poll shows that roughly half of Wisconsin voters support legalization, although it still appears to be a political non-starter. Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mary Burke has said she supports examining the medical benefits of cannabis but dismissed recreational legalization as out-of-line with mainstream opinion in an interview last month.

Sargent told the Cap Times that she has not discussed the issue much with other legislators, but that she knows some members of her party would favor legislation legalizing the drug.

Posted by Gary at 08:32 AM | Comments (0)

December 05, 2013

Madison NORML Examiner: Dane County to vote on pot legalization?

Posted by Gary Storck
Thursday, December 5, 2013

Great news today as Dane County supervisors announce plans for a Spring 2014 Dane County Marijuana Legalization Advisory Referendum!

Dane County to vote on pot legalization?</a>

A press conference was held Thursday morning to announce plans to put an advisory referendum on marijuana legalization on Spring 2014 ballots in Dane County. County Supervisors Leland Pan, Kyle Richmond and John Hendricks announced the proposal at a press conference at the Student Activity Center on East Campus Mall. Also speaking were Nate Petreman of Madison NORML and Gary Storck of Is My Medicine Legal YET? (IMMLY).

Continue reading, "Dane County to vote on pot legalization?"

Posted by Gary at 08:40 AM | Comments (0)

December 01, 2013

CHANGE.org: Petitioning Wisconsin Medical Society and Dr. Michael M. Miller M.D.: Apologize for Obstructing Wisconsin Medical Marijuana Legislation

Posted by Gary Storck
Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013

Please sign and share this new petition I created.

Petitioning Wisconsin Medical Society and Dr. Michael M. Miller M.D.: Apologize for Obstructing Wisconsin Medical Marijuana Legislation

My name is Gary Storck and I'm a medical cannabis patient/activist in Madison, WI. I was born with glaucoma and other medical issues and have been using medical cannabis more than 41 years to save my eyesight. I've been trying to change WI law to allow medical use but have been blocked at every direction thanks to the WI Med Society and Dr. Miller.

CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta recently formally apologized for his role in denying the legitimacy of medical marijuana, saying he had been duped. Dr. Gupta's extraordinary apology and acknowledgement that the medical establishment has abdicated its responsibilities toward the science of cannabis cones at a time the nation is reaching the broadest level of mainstream support yet for medical cannabis.

"We have been terribly and systematically misled for nearly 70 years in the United States, and I apologize for my own role in that" -- Dr. Sanjay Gupta

Unfortunately, Wisconsin's path to legal medical cannabis has long been repeatedly obstructed by the efforts of Dr. Michael M. Miller M.D., F.A.S.A.M. and the Wisconsin State Medical Society (SMS).

For decades, Dr. Miller and his predecessor, Fond Du Lac, Wisc. Dr. Darold Treffert, M.D., have abused their status as officials with both the State Medical Society and Wisconsin's State Controlled Substances Board to systematically hold back the progress of medicine in Wisconsin and deny a safe, natural treatment to millions of state residents by pursuing efforts designed to withhold legal access to medical cannabis to the state's seniors, veterans, sick, disabled and dying patients.

Enough is enough and it is time for Dr. Miller and the SMS to take responsibility for what they have done in prolonging the suffering of people in pain.

But, instead of moderating their extreme medical cannabis policies to acknowledge the world has changed and they have made mistakes, Dr. Miller and the Medical Society have now instead cynically decided to double-down by attacking Wisconsin's latest medical cannabis legislation.

Senate Bill 363/Assembly Bill 480, Wisconsin's new Jacki Rickert Medical Cannabis Act (JRMCA), was recently introduced by Sen. Jon Erpenbach (D-Middleton), Rep. Chris Taylor (D-Madison) along with four other state senators and twelve assembly representatives. The response of Dr. Miller and the SMS was again to register with Wisconsin's lobbying regulators against the bill and oppose it in the Wisconsin State Journal and other media outlets.

It is time for both Dr. Michael M. Miller and the Wisconsin Medical Society to apologize for misleading Wisconsinites on this issue and working to maintain a prohibition that harms every state resident. It is also time to for the State Medical Society to find a new spokesperson with an actual background in the science of cannabinoids and the endocannabinoid system.

If you agree, please sign and share this petition! http://www.change.org/petitions/wisconsin-medical-society-and-dr-michael-m-miller-m-d-apologize-for-obstructing-wisconsin-medical-marijuana-legislation?utm_source=guides&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=petition_created

Posted by Gary at 08:12 PM | Comments (0)