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Medical Marijuana is Coming to Stoughton (And Massachusetts)...Now What?

OASIS ON THE MOVE: OASIS (Organizing Against Substances in Stoughton) responds to the passing of medical marijuana (Question 3) in Massachusetts in November's Presidential Election.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The medical marijuana ballot initiative (Question 3) passed statewide in this November’s Presidential Election, with 63 percent of Massachusetts voters supporting it.

Only two communities statewide - Mendon and Lawrence - voted against Question 3. Stoughton voters favored it 60% to 40%.

“This proposed law would eliminate state criminal and civil penalties for the medical use of marijuana by qualifying patients,” according to the Secretary of State’s website. “It allows patients meeting certain conditions to obtain marijuana produced and distributed by new state-regulated centers or, in specific hardship cases, to grow marijuana for their own use.”

“The proposed law would allow for [up to 35] non-profit medical marijuana treatment centers to grow, process and provide marijuana to patients or their caregivers,” according to the Secretary of State’s website.

Proponents argue medical marijuana will “ease the suffering of thousands of people with cancer, Parkinson’s disease, Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, HIV/AIDS, glaucoma, and other debilitating conditions,” while opponents argue that “the loopholes for corruption and exploitation are enormous” based on how the initiative was written.

Read the OASIS reaction to Question 3 passing below. For more information about Question 3, click here.

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OASIS Response

So, Medical Marijuana is coming to Massachusetts.  OASIS (Organizing Against Substances in Stoughton) wants you to know that this does not change any of the following facts:

  • Marijuana is the most commonly used illicit drug in Massachusetts and the nation.
  • Youth in states that have “medical” marijuana programs, believe that marijuana is much less harmful than youth in other parts of the country. 
  • In states with Medical Marijuana laws, marijuana is being diverted to teens for recreational use.
  • One in six kids who try marijuana will become addicted. In the past 15 years, the potency of Marijuana (THC content) has more than tripled from 3% to more than 11%, making today’s drug highly addictive and very different from the marijuana from the 1970s and 1980s.
  • Developing teens brains are negatively affected by marijuana use. A recent study demonstrated that teens that smoke marijuana have up to an 8-point IQ drop in early adulthood, compared to teens that do not smoke.

It is likely that this law will lead to increased youth use of marijuana in Stoughton and across Massachusetts.  States with Medical Marijuana have marijuana abuse rates that are almost double the rate of states without such laws.  

In Stoughton, when marijuana was decriminalized by popular vote in 2008, the amount of Stoughton youth using marijuana jumped from 19% (2008) to 28%(2011). The closer we get to legalizing marijuana, the less kids think it is harmful and the more they use it.

As this new law goes into effect we need to be vigilant and guard against potential abuses and medical marijuana getting into the hands of our children. Will a pot shop open in Stoughton? Will it be close to our parks, our schools, or the Square? Who can go in the pot shops? Will marijuana candy-look a-likes (Cheeba Chews, BuddaFingers, etc.) and marijuana-based products be marketed to teens?

Just because this law passed, it does not change the facts.  However, youth who receive clear messages from their parents about the dangers of drug use are less likely to use drugs.  

Kids who are connected in some way to the community / school are less at risk. Your best defense against this law negatively impacting your kids is YOU.  So, talk to your kids.  If you need help visit our website for helpful resources and information: www.stoughtonoasis.org

Knowledge is power! Know the facts! Keep talking!

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Kevin_Hunt November 26, 2012 at 06:32 PM
"It is likely that this law will lead to increased youth use of marijuana in Stoughton and across Massachusetts." This is a lie. No one believes this 80's Reagan propaganda anymore. "Researchers compared teens in Rhode Island, where medical marijuana was legalized in 2006, with adolescents in Massachusetts, which doesn't allow medical marijuana sales. The analysis included 32,570 teens who completed surveys on drug use between 1997 and 2009. The study showed no statistically significant differences regarding marijuana use between the two states in any year. " http://articles.latimes.com/2011/nov/02/news/la-heb-teens-marijuana-20111102 "We replicated previously published results showing higher marijuana use in states with MMLs. Difference-in-differences estimates suggested that passing MMLs decreased past-month use among adolescents by 0.53 percentage points. " Source: Ann Epidemiol. 2012 Mar;22(3):207-12. "A new study finds there is no evidence that legalization of medical marijuana increases teen drug use. " Source: "Medical Marijuana Laws and Teen Marijuana Use" Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) http://www.iza.org/en/webcontent/publications/papers/viewAbstract?dp_id=6592. "Marijuana Usage Down Among Colorado Teens, Up Nationally: Study Shows" http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/07/marijuana-usage-down-in-t_n_1865095.html
Kevin November 27, 2012 at 01:24 AM
Popular Mechanics in the 1920's called HEMP a Billion Dollar Crop (billion in the 20's!!!) Simply an amazing plant, bottom line, over 50,000 KNOWN commercial uses! Medicine, Food, Oil, Paper, Clothes, etc. Our senior citizens remember World War II when the government put out the film Hemp for Victory. Wake up Oasis - this plant is here to stay because it promotes peace and understanding through contemplation. You c 2 b human is to realize nature is NOT separate from you. Nature is not just a resource to b exploited for money.This plant, this Hemp, is the ultimate equalizer that puts the power back into the peoples hands! Hemp has no THC. Why is it illegal? Because you wouldn't need Oil or gasoline or petrochemicals or pharmaceuticals. Hemp does it all! Are we really this foolish to buy into the corporate marketing demon which pollutes our bodies, minds, & environment w toxic chemicals (so perhaps you need more of their pharmaceuticals). If u have any light in your Spirit, please read, "Lifeline to the Future" by Conrad OR The Emperor Wears No Clothes by Jack Herer. Oasis is made up of the police and clergy (who want ur obedience, Attorneys who profit off Laws, and public schools which hardly challenge the mind, heart, & intellect of the children. We do not need so many laws & we certainly don't need so many taxes. We all need hemp again! A billion dollar solution to clean energy, clean living, and cohabitation w all other living creatures. One Plant & One Human Family
michd November 27, 2012 at 04:29 AM
Well I guess we all know who will be the first to get a doctors note...Kevin. Just because Stoughton voted to have Massachusetts legalize it, doesn't mean that the clinic should open up here in town. It seems to me that the residents should vote as to whether or not a clinic be opened. Furthermore, we have enough crap in town (strip club, boarded up buildings, boarded up and/or closed down vacant business, homes underwater, rise in crime etc.) We need to clean this town up, not bring this sh*t in.
Chuck M November 27, 2012 at 06:15 AM
Smoke some more....that is biggest crock...almost as big as the legalization of the "gateway drug"...it just opens the door for other drug use....and when it is combined with alcohol (another drug)...u end up with a recipe for disaster...and o by the way..alcohol is derived from fruits and vegetables which are also "natural"....BS!!
FlyingTooLow November 27, 2012 at 02:16 PM
@ Chuck M... I smoked my first joint in December, 1967, at the tender age of 21. Now, a mere 45 years later, I still smoke pot. I have never 'graduated' to 'harder' drugs. I am living proof that prohibitionist propaganda is a fallacy...a blatant lie. The worst experience I had with marijuana was spending 5 years in Federal Prison for a pot offense. While I was there, I watched armed bank robbers come and go in as little as 20 months. When I went to the parole board after more than 3 years 'behind the wall,' I pointed this out to the panel members. Their response: "You must understand that yours was a very serious offense." I laughed about that for another 2 years (as I still sat in prison)...then wrote my book: Shoulda Robbed a Bank No, it is not a treatise on disproportionate sentences. I wrote about the escapades that led to my incarceration. I admit, I had a great time. No one was injured, no one was killed, firearms were not involved...there were no victims. We were Americans pursuing happiness in our own way. Harming no one...nor their property. That’s my contribution to helping point out just how ludicrous our pot laws truly are. I would be honored by your review.
FlyingTooLow November 27, 2012 at 02:20 PM
Why is 'big pharma' not being prosecuted? In 2009, 26,000 deaths from prescription medicines. Deaths caused by marijuana...not a single one in recorded history.
FlyingTooLow November 27, 2012 at 02:20 PM
I copied the below comment from another website. I think the American veteran who wrote this sums it up very well: "I am a disabled Army Veteran and smoke marijuana strictly for medical purposes. I never smoked before I broke my back in the military and it hasen't been a gateway to anything. I started smoking because of my cauda equina syndrome. I had a herniated disk in my lower back that compressed the nerves at the lower end of my spine (cauda equina nerves). The doctors couldn't prevent permanent damage, so I am left with permanent pain that is so severe that it leads to vomiting on a consistant basis without my medacine (marijuana). The doctors prescribed me morphine, oxycodone, oxymorphone, oxycotton, hydromorphone, hydrocodone, etc... All of the above named meda... cines made me useless, I hardly knew what was happening around me. On top of that, they didnt help with the pain or the vomiting from the pain. I felt like bugs were crawling under my skin. After complaining about this for a while, friends and family handed me cannabis. I was reluctant at first, due to the stigma that goes along with it. After I gave it a try, I realized that it was far and away a better solution than any of the above named DRUGS. I had none of the issues with cannabis that I had with all those other PHARMACEUTICAL DRUGS. I can function and carry on with my life. Marijuana has made me a better person and a far more functional parent and husband."
Kevin_Hunt November 27, 2012 at 04:04 PM
Sorry, Chuck, science has proven marijuana is not a "gateway drug". You need to come up with some new lies, the 80's propaganda is getting old. As you say "...BS!!" If you think that alcohol is so bad, maybe you should be calling for a return to alcohol prohibition, since you think that prohibition works so well at reducing supply and demand. My statistics tell a different story. “Marijuana as a ‘‘Gateway Drug’’ The Institute of Medicine (IOM) reported that the widely held belief that marijuana is a ‘‘gateway drug,’’ leading to subsequent abuse of other illicit drugs, lacks conclusive evidence (Institute of Medicine, 1999). Nace et al. (1975) reported that even in the Vietnam-era soldiers who extensively abused marijuana and heroin, there was a lack of correlation of a causal relationship demonstrating marijuana use leading to heroin addiction. A recent longitudinal study of 708 adolescents demonstrated that early onset marijuana use did not lead to problematic drug use (Kandel and Chen, 2000). Source: Department of Justice Drug Enforcement Administration Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 131 / Friday, July 8, 2011 / Page 40556
Kevin_Hunt November 27, 2012 at 04:07 PM
So Michelle, do you have any evidence that dispensaries attract crime at a greater rate than banks or pharmacies? Got any other ideas to fill those vacant business properties? "There were no observed cross-sectional associations between the density of medical marijuana dispensaries and either violent or property crime rates in this study. These results suggest that the density of medical marijuana dispensaries may not be associated with crime rates or that other factors, such as measures dispensaries take to reduce crime (i.e., doormen, video cameras), may increase guardianship such that it deters possible motivated offenders." Source: J Stud Alcohol Drugs. 2012 Jul;73(4):523-30. Exploring the ecological association between crime and medical marijuana dispensaries. Kepple NJ, Freisthler B. Department of Social Welfare, University of California, Los Angeles
Marie Perry December 21, 2012 at 12:00 AM
I think the author is talking about marijuana and kids...not adult use.

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