Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) Cyberattack 

The Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) is the victim of another cyberattack, this time leaving retailers unable to process or get their orders delivered. Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) Latest Cyberattack Unlike the previous May 11 cyberattack, the OCS said customers’ information wasn’t compromised. Instead, the August 5 attack targeted the OCS’s third-party distribution centre, Domain Logistics. […]

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Celebrities Who Smoke Cannabis Crossword Puzzle

This week’s crossword puzzle is all about celebrities who smoke cannabis. The questions are pretty simple; you fill in the blank. But, if you get stuck, you can plug the question into Google and the associated person will come up. Some of these pot loving celebrities are fairly obvious but others might surprise you. Blow […]

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Health Canada: CBD Safe and Tolerable

Health Canada has reviewed cannabidiol (CBD) and deemed it “safe and tolerable” for short-term use. Health Canada’s report looked at dosages ranging from 20 milligrams to up to 200 mg per day. As of now, all CBD products must go through a heavily regulated cannabis supply chain. One can only sell CBD in cannabis stores. […]

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This is not your grandparents’ marijuana

This is not your grandparents’ marijuana. You’re going to hear that a lot if you haven’t already. Substitute grandparents for parents, and the meaning is the same. In the “good ole days,” like the 1960s and 70s, cannabis contained no more than 2% THC. By the 1990s, it was 4%. But now, in the legal […]

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British Columbians are Killing BC Bud

British Columbians are killing BC Bud by buying from licensed retail stores. Of course, it isn’t entirely their fault. Only a few BC Bud growers can get past the bureaucratic hurdles the federal and provincial governments have set up. Going from underground to above-board isn’t as easy as applying for a permit. Farmers have to […]

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Pharmacies in Canada may sell over the counter CBD, but not gas stations

A committee representing Health Canada released a review on the safety and efficacy of CBD. Comprised of nine volunteers, the committee was established in 2019 with four objectives regarding cannabis. Pharmacies in Canada may sell over the counter CBD packaged in a box. But don’t expect Canadian gas stations to sell CBD anytime soon. Canadian […]

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Cannabis Trivia Crossword Puzzle – History, Culture, Law & Science

Oh, trivia…such fun isn’t it? Who doesn’t enjoy a good game? It’s a great way to learn some random facts and get credit for the ones you already know. Without being said, let’s get to it! This is a cannabis trivia crossword puzzle. The questions come from categories such as history, culture, law and science. […]

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Pesticide and tattoo ingredient releases hydrogen cyanide

A study published in Nature’s Scientific Reports documented the release of toxins from a tattoo pigment. Irradiation from laser removal or heat forces the substance to break down. But the dye that releases hydrogen cyanide is also an inert ingredient in specific pesticide formulations. Ovens do not reach the temperature required to break down the […]

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Is Cannabis Addictive?

According to a new study published in Lancet Psychiatry, the answer to the question “is cannabis addictive” is an astounding yes. The authors claim that people who use cannabis with higher concentrations of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, are more likely to have an addiction and mental health issues. But how much of this is a chicken […]

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Senate Democrats Introduce Long-Awaited Cannabis Legalization Bill

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and two of his Democratic colleagues introduced a federal cannabis legalization bill last week, a little more than a year after the lawmakers released a discussion draft of the legislation. The bill, the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act, was introduced on July 21 by New York’s Schumer, Senate Finance Chair Ron Wyden of Oregon and Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey.

“As more states legalize cannabis and work towards reversing the many injustices the failed War on Drugs levied against Black, Brown and low-income people, the federal government continues to lag woefully behind,” Booker said in a statement about the legislation. “With strong restorative justice provisions for communities impacted by the drug war, support for small cannabis businesses and expungement of federal cannabis offenses, this bill reflects long overdue, common sense drug policy. I’m proud to have partnered with Senators Schumer and Wyden to introduce this critical legislation. The support that we’ve received from committee chairs and outside groups underscores the historic nature of this bill and the urgent need for Congress to pass it.”

Legislation Removes Cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act

The Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act (CAOA) would remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act and allow the states to decide on legalizing cannabis outright. The legislation would also levy a tax on cannabis sales, expunge records of past federal marijuana convictions and allow federal prisoners serving time for nonviolent cannabis convictions to petition for resentencing. The cannabis legalization bill also establishes a national regulatory framework to protect public health and safety, prioritizes restorative and economic justice to help address the negative impacts of the War on Drugs, ends discrimination in the granting of federal benefits based on cannabis use, strengthens worker protections and provides significant investments in cannabis research.

Schumer said that the cannabis prohibition and the War on Drugs have been “a war on people, and particularly people of color,” referring to the profound disparity in the enforcement of the nation’s marijuana laws. In 2020, a report from the American Civil Liberties Union found that Black people are nearly four times as likely to be arrested for a cannabis offense, despite roughly equal rates of use.

“The Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act will be a catalyst for change by removing cannabis from the federal list of controlled substances, protecting public health and safety and expunging the criminal records of those with low-level cannabis offenses, providing millions with a new lease on life,” said Schumer. “A majority of Americans now support legalizing cannabis, and Congress must act by working to end decades of over-criminalization. It is time to end the federal prohibition on cannabis.”

Early Draft of Bill Released Last Year

The CAOA was first released in draft form by the Democratic Senate trio on July 14, 2021. The lawmakers also sought public input on the proposed cannabis legalization bill, receiving approximately 1,800 comments on its provisions from stakeholders across the US. After reviewing the submitted suggestions on working on the legislation in several Senate committees, Schumer, Booker and Wyden revised the discussion draft to produce the bill introduced by the senators last week. A summary of the revised bill and an 11-page summary of the revisions to the CAOA discussion draft has been posted online.

Reaction to the cannabis legalization bill from representatives of the legal marijuana industry was upbeat. Troy Datcher, CEO of multistate cannabis operator The Parent Company, said that the introduction of the legislation “marks the beginning of a new direction after nearly a century of the failed policy of cannabis prohibition in the United States.”

“In the coming weeks, we look forward to a robust debate on The Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act and will be watching closely to see whether the bill appears likely to obtain the support necessary for passage in the Senate,” Datcher wrote in an email to Cannabis Now. “While engaged in this important and necessary debate about the best policy framework for cannabis legalization, we urge the Senate to not lose sight of those reforms that have broad bipartisan support, such as the SAFE Banking Act, expungement of cannabis convictions and efforts to lower the barriers to entry for minority cannabis operators.”

Schumer noted that introducing the bill is only the “beginning of the legislative process” and that the senators would now work to gain support from both Democratic and GOP lawmakers. The cannabis legalization bill faces stiff opposition from several Republican senators and some moderate Democrats, making gaining approval in the body unsure at best. Nevertheless, the CAOA marks continued progress on cannabis policy reform at the federal level.

“I’m proud to be the first [US Senate] Majority Leader ever to say that it’s time to end the federal prohibition on cannabis, and this bill provides the best framework for updating our cannabis laws and reversing decades of harm inflicted by the war on drugs,” Schumer said on the Senate floor on Thursday.

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