Former pothead turned Libertarian wunderkind Rand Paul (who dresses like his dad — yikes) is attempting to brand himself as the great emancipator of rich white college kids, co-authoring senate legislation that would relax the Fed's stance on marijuana.
The bill, which is being introduced by Paul and East Coast Democrat senators Cory Booker and Kirsten Gillibrand, would downgrade weed's Schedule 1 status with the Drug Enforcement Agency, making it more available for researchers and doctors who recommend pot to veterans, according to the Washington Post. It would also allow pot businesses to use banks in states where those businesses have been legalized.
Paul (who looks like he's a Solo cup away from a kegger in press photos) is by no means a social liberal, but the potential Republican presidential candidate may be seeking the support of weed enthusiasts who are seeing broadening legalization around the country and who could make marijuana an important presidential platform in 2016. He has come out in support of states' rights to legalize marijuana, but bashed the use of it, despite his admitted history of puffing tough.
"I personally think that marijuana use is not healthy," Paul told the Las Vegas Sun a couple years ago. "People that use it chronically have a loss of IQ and a loss of ambition."
Hear that, long hair? Put down the bong, pick up a copy of The Fountainhead and you could be on your way to political stardom.•
Humboldt officials joined five other Northern California counties in a summit March 5 to come up with a unified marijuana policy, the Times-Standard reports.
The local governments shared one major interest: local control. By uniting, organizers said, the small, rural counties have a better chance of influencing anticipated legislation on medical and recreational marijuana in the next few years. It was agreed, the T-S reporter Will Houston wrote, that individual counties should be able to control taxation and cultivation, rather than let Sacramento impose uniform standards over the diverse array of California counties.•
Medical marijuana is legal in New York, but some Jewish would-be patients who keep kosher are stuck — the state's health department doesn't allow patients to smoke pot, and while the state's Jewish Orthodox Union supports medical marijuana, cannabis laden edibles haven't caught on in the orthodox community because they're not kosher. That's expected to change soon, as the Daily Mail reports the Orthodox Union's kosher certification agency is in discussions with edibles manufacturers to produce kosher ganja food by next year.•
DEA agent Matt Fairbanks may scale mountains as part of a paramilitary marijuana eradication team, but the guy's got a soft side.
At a hearing before the Utah State Senate in late February, Fairbanks spoke against a movement to legalize medical marijuana in the state with an anecdote: During a raid on a mountainside grow, he encountered a bunny that, having grown accustomed to munching on the abundant marijuana plants, had become listless, foregoing all rabbitly ambitions.
"Deforestation has left marijuana grows with even rabbits that had cultivated a taste for the marijuana," the Guardian reports Fairbanks testifying. "One of them refused to leave us, and we took all the marijuana around him, but his natural instincts to run were somehow gone."
The tale (which joined Fairbanks' other concerns about environmental damage) earned at least one Monty Python reference from a medical marijuana advocate in attendance, and an admonishing line from Guardian writer Alan Yuhas:
"... While rabbits and other wild creatures can suffer the effects of chemical inebriation, they remain unable to communicate with humans even on their sober days, and incapable of expressing even to experienced DEA agents exactly the degree of their high."