By Joe Tilton
Dr. Kevin Sabet, Founder of Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), convened169 people in a Zoom meeting May first to discuss new ways of combating the dangers THC is imposing on the world’s population.
Sabet began the conference by reminding participants of the enhanced problems from much higher concentrations of the mind-altering substance, and how the pot industry is maneuvering their way into unsuspecting communities.
“Their attorneys are showing up at city meetings to threaten legal action, but they’re no match for groups of citizens opposing them,” the doctor began. “Products such as loaded gummy bears are causing harm to children while weed industry people are asking for government money during the pandemic. Still, in Michigan, 79-percent of their communities have opted out of licensing marijuana shops. Super-liberal states, such as Oregon still have a 60-percent opt-out rate. And, hospitalizations are up near these pot shops. Crime is up and property values are down where the marijuana industry is successful.”
Michigan was again mentioned in the meeting, citing the President of Detroit’s NAACP, Dr. Wendell Anthony, as reminding the state how pot shops are focusing on poor communities, causing disproportionate misery.
The featured speaker was Dana Stevens of Colorado, a long-time opponent of legalizing marijuana. She has experience guiding communities in knowing where controls are and how to stop pot merchants with zoning, testing, delivery restrictions, municipal codes, health and safety, morals and safety, licenses and regulations plus business restrictions.
Stevens encourages communities to seriously consider buffer zones around child-care facilities and schools, and ban signage for weed shops. “Odor control for this ‘skunk weed’ is another potential,” she said, “and watch out for delivery vans coming to your neighborhoods selling marijuana like ice-cream trucks. These people are parking on streets and selling to anybody with money,” she continued, “this is something you can stop by restricting transportation. No drivers under age 25 should be allowed, and restrict transportation through your community as well. And where individuals are allowed to grow their own, require that every plant be in a locked and secure enclosure. The message must be, ‘not here.’” She cited South Haven, Michigan and Pendleton, Indiana as success stories where pot was stopped with community regulations.
She ended her hour-long presentation with, “If you’re not angry, they’re not paying attention.”
Dr. Sabet told the group how SAM is laying the foundation for a massive settlement, such as the one big tobacco had to pay; the 25-billion dollar settlement used to compensate large numbers of families for lung cancer and death.
An example of large-city protests of marijuana and CBD comes from St. Louis, Missouri where a “Freedom from Quack Medicine” protest is being planned. The protest will feature people driving around with honking-squeaky ducks held out their car windows. Another feature of the protest is to demonstrate “people in bondage” using 600 feet of rope with markers every eight feet so they don’t get cited for distancing.
The CBD industry has come under fire by the Federal Trade Commission through a lawsuit filed in California. The suit is against Whole Leaf Organics that has been marketing CBD as “effective cancer treatments” and “preventive treatment for Covid-19.” Whole Leaf’s website claimed “Thrive” was “formulated with potent antiviral herbal extracts” and was the “perfect way to strengthen your immunity against pathogens like Covid-19.”
The FTC suit shows a new and aggressive effort by the Federal Government to ensure truth about CBD and stop claims comparable snake-oil-type claims that have been driving the market for some time.
FTC’s Andrew Smith said, “Let’s be clear. Companies making these claims can look forward to an FTC lawsuit like this one.”