April 20 is the pot smokers’ holiday. It’s been one of my favorite holidays for quite some time, but this year I fear for those in states where marijuana is “legal,” either medically or recreationally.
Despite weed being legal in the District of Columbia, seven people have been arrested outside the nation’s capitol buildings for possession or possession with intent to distribute. They will, of course, be charged under federal law, since marijuana remains a Schedule I drug, along with heroin and Ecstasy, because, well, no reason except a scary, uninformed propaganda campaign.
The people arrested were passing out joints to Congressional staff and had 1,227 of them on hand for good reason. H.R. 1227, the bill that prohibits the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) from using funds to interfere with state marijuana laws, expires in just under a week, on April 28, and is unlikely to pass as part of the government funding bill. This is why I’m so scared for my friends back in Montana, Colorado, Washington, California and over half of the rest of the nation’s states where weed is legal either medically or recreationally.
I lived through countless DEA raids in the state of Montana and read about more in other states. Last year I saw cancer patients lose access to the medicine that made their pain tolerable and allowed them to keep food down. I was one of the patients that lost access. I’ve seen parents use CBD oil to help manage their children’s epilepsy. We’ve all seen this work in some way or another, or know someone who has, but nothing will stop the DEA from raiding legal businesses providing a legal substance under state law starting April 28.
Not to make you more paranoid than you already are, but there’s just something about this administration, and something specifically about this Attorney General Jeff Sessions I don’t trust. His little “crime-reduction” task force and marijuana subcommittee reviewing the 2013 Cole memo that allowed states to regulate recreational cannabis sales just doesn’t sit well in my stomach.
Hell, now that the Supreme Court has a conservative majority, I figure the first case that challenges the Constitutionality of state marijuana laws will be an opportunity to put an end to it all, with Neil Gorsuch, of Colorado, casting the deciding vote. Figures, right?
But by the time that all happens weed will be legal in Canada, and pot smokers can just move there. The hit to the American economy and American tax revenue, however, will take a lot longer to recover from than a hit from the bong.
If you like this, you might like these Genesis Communications Network talk shows: America’s Healthcare Advocate, The Bright Side, The Dr. Daliah Show, Dr. Asa On Call, Dr. Coldwell Opinion Radio, Drew Pearson Live, Good Day Health, Health Hunters, Herb Talk, Free Talk Live
Republicans are again trying to repeal and replace Obamacare, but what they’re really doing is attempting to alter the Affordable Care Act just enough so they hold onto their jobs and fulfill a promise made by Donald Trump to repeal and replace Obamacare “one Day 1.” We are nearing Day 100, and the House Republicans can’t even agree amongst themselves let alone get enough votes in the Senate to pass their American Health Care Act.
The best thing that could have happened for Republicans with regard to the Affordable Care Act would have been to accomplish the goal announced by House Majority Leader Mitch McConnell just after Barack Obama was elected president. "The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president,” he said. They failed, and so will their attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare.
The problem for Republicans, and specifically Southern Republicans, is that Obamacare is working for some and would work for most of their constituents. In fact, the South had the highest rate of uninsured people in 2012 at 18.6 percent. And it’s not all Hispanics. Over 68 million of them are white.
Southerners are also the least healthy of all Americans, with 20 percent reporting fair or poor health in 2014. Southerners are also the most impoverished Americans, with 17 percent of Southerners living below the poverty level in 2014. The South also has the highest rates for diabetes, obesity and infant mortality in the nation. The South accounts for nearly as many uninsured people as the rest of America combined, and 17 percent of the uninsured fall into the coverage gap for Medicaid expansion.
Yet Southerners have taken advantage of, or actually, been disadvantaged by the Supreme Court decision to not force Medicaid expansion upon all states. Had all states been required to expand Medicaid, 7 million people would gain coverage, 4.3 million fewer people would be uninsured and states would see between $5 and $10 billion in uncompensated care savings over the next 10 years, which would offset increased state spending by between 13 and 25 percent.
Of the 19 states resisting Medicaid expansion, 14 are in the South. The states with the most people who stand to gain insurance through expansion are Florida (1.253 million), Texas (1.186 million) and Georgia (.682 million). Georgia nearly elected a Democrat to the house just a few days ago, Texas is turning blue, and two Republican incumbents lost House seats to Democrats in Florida last November, while Democratic incumbents retained all six of their seats.
In short, Southerners need Obamacare and the subsidies that come along with it. They’re just starting to realize it. Now, if America adopted a Medicare-for-all system that Bernie Sanders has proposed, maybe we could stop spending nearly $3 quadrillion on health care as a nation.
If you like this, you might like these Genesis Communications Network talk shows: USA Prepares, Building America, Free Talk Live, The Easy Organic Gardener, American Survival Radio, Jim Brown’s Common Sense, Good Day Health, MindSet: Mental Health News and Information, Health Hunters, America’s Health Advocate, The Bright Side, The Dr. Daliah Show, Dr. Asa On Call, The Dr. Bob Martin Show, Dr. Coldwell Opinion Radio, The Dr. Katherine Albrecht Show, Drew Pearson Live