Secret White House Committee that Pushes Negative Pot Stories Results in Demand for Neutral Information About Medical Cannabis from the Government

by on September 13, 2018 · 4 comments

in Ocean Beach

It has been reported the Trump White House has set up a secret committee to collect and distribute negative stories and statements about cannabis. It’s called the Marijuana Policy Coordination Committee and it’s made up of Executive Branch officials. BuzzFeed News broke the story on August 29 and it opens with:

The White House has secretly amassed a committee of federal agencies from across the government to combat public support for marijuana and cast state legalization measures in a negative light, while attempting to portray the drug as a national threat, according to interviews with agency staff and documents obtained by BuzzFeed News.

The Marijuana Policy Coordination Committee, as it’s named in White House memos and emails, instructed 14 federal agencies and the Drug Enforcement Administration this month to submit “data demonstrating the most significant negative trends” about marijuana and the “threats” it poses to the country.

In an ironic twist, the committee complained in one memo that the narrative around marijuana is unfairly biased in favor of the drug. But rather than seek objective information, the committee’s records show it is asking officials only to portray marijuana in a negative light, regardless of what the data show. “The prevailing marijuana narrative in the U.S. is partial, one-sided, and inaccurate,” says a summary of a July 27 meeting of the White House and nine departments. In a follow-up memo, which provided guidance for responses from federal agencies, White House officials told department officials, “Departments should provide … the most significant data demonstrating negative trends, with a statement describing the implications of such trends.”
BuzzFeed News

There is certainly some shock among Americans about this secret committee in this day and age. It reminds us of past failed campaigns against pot – and jolts us in realizing the feds are really in a retrograde moment on cannabis. Part of the push back on this dinosaur attitute involves Americans for Safe Access – a nation-wide advocate for access to medical cannabis (with a local San Diego chapter) – and their current campaign of support for the Marijuana Data Collection Act (H.R. 6495). They state:

There is no way we can have honest conversations with lawmakers about medical cannabis if the White House is organizing smear campaigns behind the scene. While the existence and reach of the Marijuana Policy Coordination Committee is unclear, one thing is certain; that the public should be entitled to neutral statistics and studies when it comes to cannabis, not those that are slanted in a negative manner.

To help promote a fair debate about medical cannabis, we ask you urge your Member of Congress to cosponsor the Marijuana Data Collection Act (H.R. 6495) which requires the Secretary of HHS to coordinate with the DOJ, DOL, and States (to the greatest extent possible) and direct the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to publish a biannual study on the health, safety, and economic effects of state legalized marijuana programs.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Jan Michael Sauer September 13, 2018 at 1:48 pm

The best thing about marijuana is that it keeps people from doing more destructive substances. Whenever and wherever there is a cannabis shortage use of other drugs increases. If it wasn’t for reefer we would have madness. There would be much more abuse of alcohol, cocaine, meth, etc. When Reagan blockaded Columbian marijuana from entering our country, the smugglers just switched to a more profitable commodity- cocaine. Prohibition of marijuana is unhealthy for any society.

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sealintheSelkirks sealintheSelkirks September 13, 2018 at 3:00 pm

Cannabis is still a Federal Schedule 1 Felony Narcotic with no medical uses. The right wing racist anti-cannabis Attorney General Sessions publicly stated that he ‘thought the KKK were an okay bunch of guys’ until he found out they smoked merrywanna.

That’s pretty scary, isn’t it?

The republicans have already discounted Obama’s extremely weak watered-down memo about not prosecuting pot busts. All it’ll take is Trump/Sessions to declare a National Security issue, federal law trumps state law, and to declare a State of Emergency while US military troops (read Obama’s NDAA to understand this part) swarm out to arrest everyone connected to any type of cannabis use, sale, grows, etc etc. It is ALL A FEDERAL FELONY still, folks.

Under NDAA the Army can detain and house indefinitely without any recourse to lawyers or a judge until the ’emergency is over.’ Indefinitely means forever when the emergency will never be over.

Think of the profits to be made imprisoning all those millions of people. The wealthy hedge fund managers must be drooling in ecstasy. As are the cops, lawyers, DAs, private prison industry, jailors, bail bondsmen… What’s the old saying; you can’t expect someone to change their minds with new facts when their paycheck depends on not changing their mind.

And if you think the Dems are any different, read up on what Hillary said about legalization. Quote: NOT ON MY WATCH. Then read about what Chelsea Clinton said about how it causes people to commit violence a couple of years ago…

sealintheSelkirks

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Nanci Kelly September 13, 2018 at 11:27 pm

I realize that this is off-the-main-topic, but I hear the female Clintons being misquoted so often that I sometimes am moved to clarify. Hillary supported individual states’ legalization but wanted to reschedule marijuana from I to II in order to do more research prior to federal action, and The Marijuana Policy Project gave her a “B+” – not a progressive enough stance for most of us, but more nuanced than “not on my watch.” As for Chelsea’s remarks I’ll just refer you to Snopes for fact-checking. The question she was responding to was related primarily to medical use. Again, not progressive enough for most, but read her entire response to the question. Thanks.

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Gary September 13, 2018 at 9:06 pm

The cartels/black market will have a collective sigh of relief, saying “wow! That was close. This should finish the legalization talk, hopefully for good. If pot is wanted it will be back to peddling in dark alleys.”

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