December 15, 2011

California Assemblyman Meets With US Atty On Medical Marijuana Crackdown

December 15, 2011
Tom Ammiano

Tom AmmianoBy Steve Elliott of Toke of the Town

California Assemblymember Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) on Tuesday finally got his meeting with federal prosecutor Melinda Haag, the U.S. Attorney for Northern California. But Ammiano left the meeting frustrated and disappointed that Haag doesn’t seem to understand the chaos she’s creating.

“The meeting didn’t result in any changes,” a clearly disappointed Ammiano told Tim Redmond of the San Francisco Bay Guardian. “But it was good that it happened. We cleared the air about the harm that’s being done.”

Haag wasn’t at all clear during the meeting about exactly what she wanted — what, in other words, would end the crackdown, according to Ammiano aide Quintin Mecke.

The thrust of Haag’s arguments in the meeting were the same tired old lines about “proximity to kids,” even though, as pointed out by the Guardian, “that’s a really bogus argument.”

“I’ve been to a number of local dispensaries and my colleague Steve Jones has been to most of them, and every one requires a drivers license and a medical marijuana ID and they’re really serious about security,” Redmond wrote. “No high school kids are getting pot from the clubs.”

Further, San Francisco — a city that has a fuckload of dispensaries — has declining marijuana use among teens.

Ammiano backs strong regulations for the cannabis collectives, and is supported in that stance by many or most dispensary owners. But Haag wouldn’t make any policy recommendations at the meeting, likely to keep her options open so that she can bust any dispensary with or without a real reason, anytime she wants.

“So there you have it — the U.S. Attorney is using demonstrably false allegations to pursue a program that she can’t defend — and she won’t help the Legislature find a solution,” wrote Redmond. “Thanks, President Obama.”

Article From Toke of the Town and republished with special permission.


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