Sunday, March 16, 2008

CA Hemp Bill AB 1147 Vetoed

Months ago, my home computer lost its valiant battle against entropy.
While waiting to afford a new one, I went to the bookstore and bought a copy of the March 2008 edition of High Times to see how the California Hemp Bill was progressing. After all, it’s not like any local news would cover a story like this.

In the Buzz section on page 18, three words said it all: Arnold Terminates Hemp. The bill is officially as dead as my PC.

So what happens next? True to form, cannabis hemp activists are trying again with the California Cannabis Hemp and Health Initiative 2008. This initiative, currently being petitioned by California ballot recipient committee # 1303604, is an act to amend California’s Health & Safety Code.

As posted on

Purpose of Act: This Act is an exercise of the police powers of the State for the protection of the safety, welfare, health, and peace of the people and the environment of the State, to protect the industrial and medicinal uses of cannabis hemp, to eliminate the unlicensed and unlawful cultivation, selling, and dispensing of cannabis hemp; and to encourage temperance in the consumption of cannabis hemp euphoric products. It is hereby declared that the subject matter of this Act involves, in the highest degree, the ecological, economic, social, and moral well-being and safety of the State and of all its people. All provisions of this Act shall be liberally construed for the accomplishment of these purposes: to respect human rights, to promote tolerance, and to end cannabis hemp prohibition.

In a press conference, Governor Schwarzenegger defended his veto of AB 1147 stating that law enforcement could’t tell the difference between hemp and marijuana, and it would be too costly to create education for the cops. .

Think about that statement for a minute.

Consider that for almost a century this same law enforcement has spent hundreds of millions of tax payer dollars eradicating marijuana in this country alone. And here in the early 21st century, drug cases are built on not only surveillance but sophisticated laboratory analysis as well.

So representatives of these same members of law enforcement have actually advised the governor of the state of California that after all this time and money, they are too ill-trained to tell the difference between hemp production and marijuana cultivation?

And that the Governor, a former body builder who built his career and fortune as an action movie star while simultaneously working on and receiving a MBA (not an honorary one, mind you). That this man who hyped his political aspirations to the voters of California as a tax reformer, would tolerate such a horrific Enron-like misuse of public funds, i.e. with all that cash down the drain that the cops (please pardon the old school pun) don’t know shit?

At this juncture, it would be so very easy to rip out a bombastic diatribe against this veto. But I can’t. See, when my PC took a dirt nap, I could have made the effort to go to the public library and used the Internet access there to keep current on this legislation, and then later post to this blog by e-mail from, say, an Internet cafe. I could have been more active in making connections with people in both the hemp and microsat space industries. I definitely could have been more committed in reading up and researching this project.

But I didn’t. Sure, while I was offline my personal life got complicated. But then again, who’s doesn’t?

With this new initiative on the horizon comes a new opportunity. Now is the time to re-evaluate my efforts thus far, and focus on what I can realistically do to promote this project on a sustainable level with whatever skills I have.

This’ll be fun!