Posts tagged ‘Denver’

May 29, 2012

DUID and Cannabis…….Fox 31 News weighs in

When it comes to impaired driving a study conducted by Fox 31 News in Denver has blurred the lines when the topic is cannabis and blood ng levels.

The DUID Bill presented in Colorado’s legislative session was quite the roller coaster ride as it moved through the committees and houses. At some points it seemed legislation was competing with Elitch Gardens with all the ups and downs, twists and turns.

The bill was defeated during special session on a 17-17 tied vote, with one Senator not present. This Senator’s failure to return for special session is believed to be what killed the bill, as they would have been a deciding vote, and had voted in favor of the bill previously.

This report from Fox 31 News was released just a few days after the DUID bill was killed.

Part I KDVR http://kdvr.com/2012/05/16/your-questions-answered-driving-under-the-influence-of-marijuana/

I have pulled some screenshots from the news story to highlight a few points.

First – let’s look at the ng blood levels of the subjects in the study. The subjects were asked to not medicate at all previous to test the day of testing. Blood samples were drawn prior to any testing, and after medicating.

First up – meet “Max”

Now – Max is stated to be a daily user of cannabis for his Psychomotor agitation. As seen in the report from Fox 31 News, Max’s ng blood level for THC was at 6ng prior to any cannabis use for the day.

After medicating – Max’s blood levels for THC went up to 32ng, well over the 5ng level proposed by lawmakers.

Next up is Fran – a 63 year old Fibromyalgia sufferer.

Remarkably – Fran failed her driving test with absolutely no cannabis in her system. The fact that she claims to be a user of cannabis and arrived with product to use, it is quite apparent Fran suffered a placebo effect while driving, and she was actually failed for this test by Officer Ashby. More disturbing is the fact that the product she consumed left her with no cannabis in her system to treat her condition.

Please folks – test your products – and test them regularly. Make a habit of it. The hugest concern is for the patient. As they treat themselves, they need to know they are taking a reliable product that will help them. As more interest is shown to our industry -and trials are conducted – I suspect we will see much more of these type studies. PLEASE test your product.

Patients lives depend on it.

Next is Robert:

Robert – yet another medical cannabis user who passed the driving test. Robert passed his exam even after medicating with a 10ng blood level.

Fox 31 News did a pretty extensive study – and this was actually a two part series. This is the link to the second part – and we will break down the shocking results as we go.

Part II KDVR http://kdvr.com/2012/05/17/web-poll-driving-high-vs-driving-drunk/

Brian and Justin are the subjects in the next study – comparing driving under the influence of alcohol to marijuana.

Now – Brian clearly failed his exam – and pegged his Blood Alcohol Content at .08. Many studies have been conducted on alcohol and impaired driving. With how alcohol is metabolized in the body, it is much easier to study and have quantified answers.

Justin is the final subject – with the most shocking results.

No age was ever given for Justin – so please forgive that omission. It is not remarkable to myself to see the results of Justin’s first blood ng level. For any chronic pain patient out there  I would expect them to be very high. Cancer as well.

Justin started out at 21ng before medicating at all for the day -and went to 47ng post medication.

Yet – he was deemed a good driver – and passed his driving exam with flying colors.

Next – Fox 31 News decided to ensure the driving abilities of both, and as they put it “See if Justin is just a better driver than Brian”. So – Justin imbibed in alcohol and reported a BAC of .04.

This time – when Justin took the driving test – he failed miserably. Alcohol most certainly caused impairment – YET – under Colorado DUI law Justin was still under the .08 BAC limit and would have passed a breathalyzer test. If the 5ng limit were to have been imposed with a DUID law – he would have failed for THC levels, which when he was only under direct influence of cannabis – he passed the driving test with a 47ng blood level.

So – when you mix alcohol and cannabis – is it a fair judgement to state the person is impaired and “guilty” because of the cannabis in their system when even slight amounts of alcohol can completely skew results?

Please keep in mind, cannabis facilitates other drugs within our bodies. Folks who utilize cannabis AND pain medications find they can decrease their pain med intake as the cannabis facilitates the opioids and makes them work better – thus reducing consumption.

Also – did any of these subjects have ANY other medications in their systems? Opioids? Muscle relaxers?

Granted – the Fox 31 News story is not the greatest example of scientific, empirical evidence, but it does bring many issues to light, and exposes many issues in the thought processes of legislators when they try to impose a law with no science behind it.

I stated in an e-mail to Colorado politicians this past session that they should kill the DUID bill and apply to NIDA for funding monies to conduct a truly scientific study funded by NIDA to prove the harm of driving with cannabis in your system. We have to prove harm to get the monies – but it is possible. In Irvin Rosenfeld’s Federal protocol – it is stated he can drive and operate heavy equipment as long as he is not impaired. After years of driving and a few stops as officers smelled cannabis coming from his car – Irvin has never been deemed to be impaired – or been cited with impairment.

Irvin has been smoking cannabis over 40 years. The man should bleed green.

In addition – shouldn’t the Federal government hold some responsibility for helping to determine impairment? A NIDA study could do just that – and the Federal government has the subjects to study as well – if they ever choose to.

There have been Federal medical marijuana patients for 35 years – and the Federal Government has YET to study their own patients.

Please see the poll from Fox 31 News here – and be sure to go vote in the poll. It is located at the bottom of the second story link comparing alcohol and cannabis.

Poll screenshot pulled on 6/2/12 – stats will change over time with additional votes.

The TV Show “The Dr’s” also did an impaired driving study

http://www.everydayhealth.com/addiction/0518/is-pot-safer-than-alcohol.aspx

I have left this link for people to go look at – but please note – I do not condone utilization of this study for anything other than showing the differences of the studies. In this study by The Dr’s no blood ng levels were drawn – and personally – I take issue with any driving exam that affects a drivers peripheral vision. It’s great to be sitting in a real car – but take out peripheral vision or impair vision in any way – and the test is just not very effective or representative in my mind. I was also very disappointed in The Dr’s for not having a more empirical study. One would figure a show named “The Dr’s” they would want to know what the blood levels are.

Well….that’s my breakdown folks. Please be sure to share this information, write your politicians and encourage them to pursue NIDA monies for a study, and BE SAFE out there! Please do NOT mix alcohol with cannabis – and if you are too impaired to drive – DON’T!

Please feel free to share this post and my e-mail – and save this little kernel for the next time DUID and cannabis comes up. With how Senator King pursued it this session – I can pretty much guarantee this issue will not be going away.

March 26, 2012

One Love – One Fight – Affecting ALL rights

When Colorado Attorney General John Suthers􀁠 cross petitioned on behalf of Beinor v. Industrial Claims Appeals Office,
2011 WL 3612226 (Colo. App. 2011) he challenged the fundamental principles upon which Colorado medical marijuana exists.

The industry has come together in defense of the case and Amendment 20, voted in by Coloradans to allow patient access
to medical marijuana.

The kickoff fundraising party, One Love at Hayters, will take place on Thursday, March 29, and is being hosted by industry business associations ACT4 Colorado (ACT4CO) and Cannabis Business Alliance (CBA).

About the Case

Jason Beinor, the plaintiff and petitioner, is a medical marijuana patient and was a Denver municipal employee until he lost his job for testing positive for medical marijuana.

Beinor is now represented by Andrew Reid, of Springer & Steiner, P.C., a professor at University of Denver􀁠s Sturm College of Law, and one of the state’s pre-eminent attorneys for constitutional law.

Beinor, a reluctant spokesperson, has kept a low profile and declined interviews and offers to speak
in public. Yet it is Beinor whose name has become synonymous with Amendment 20 patient rights. The marijuana had been ingested several days prior, he was not impaired on the job, and his employment record was clean. Beinor sought but
was denied unemployment benefits.

In a 2-1 vote, the Colorado Court of Appeals ruled that the Medical Marijuana (MMJ) provisions of the Colorado
Constitution only 􀁬decriminalized􀁺 marijuana used for medicinal purposes under the Constitution, but did not secure a 􀁬right􀁺 in qualifying patients and their caregivers to use the medication. A qualifying MMJ user or care-giver couldn’t be
criminally prosecuted under state law, but because marijuana remains listed as a 􀁬controlled substance􀁺, the user would remain subject to all other non-criminal restrictions and prohibitions under Colorado law pertaining to the use of
controlled substances.
􀁬

It is crucial that we as an industry come together in support of Beinor. There is no more important case affecting medical marijuana today. It brings to bearing the key issues 􀁲 from what a latent presence of THC does, or does not do to impact impairment, to the classification of marijuana as a Schedule 1 substance with no medical value, to the tension between state and federal authority,􀁺 said Robert Hoban, CBA chair and partner at Hoban & Feola.

The Imminent Threat to Patients, Caregivers & the Cannabis Industry is not only may unemployment benefits be denied as in the Beinor case, but other benefits and rights are impacted, from licensed occupations to rights to qualification for student loans, eligibility for welfare and employment assistance as well as parole and probation. 􀁬

As long as the Colorado courts fail to recognize the Constitutional right to use medical marijuana, each of the 80,000+
qualifying MMJ patients are placed in the position of having to choose between control over their health, or employment, occupation, education, rights and benefits. We cannot let the decision stand,􀁺 says Rico Colibri, president of
CARE, a medical marijuana patient advocacy group that has provided Beinor’s legal defense resources to date.

Currently the patient, the industry and the attorney general await notice on whether the case will be heard by the Colorado Supreme Court. 􀁬We are already seeing this case cited from the Court of Appeals ruling. Our priority is to secure
the Constitutional right to medication, which is the purpose of the current petition to the Colorado Supreme Court in the Beinor Case, and virtually all of these other restrictions should fall as well since they would infringe upon a Constitutional
right,􀁺 according to ACT4CO President Nicholas King.

The kickoff event, One Love at Hayters, 1920 Blake Street, Denver, is the beginning of grassroots mobilization on the part of patients and businesses alike.

Musical performances by Whiskey Tango, Buggsy Mogues and Selecta Nikka T will be performing. Doors open at 6PM and a suggested minimum donation of $10 dollars is requested.

All are welcome to attend.

About One Love

One Love is an inclusive, non-partisan, unaffiliated group of medical marijuana industry and patient stakeholders that exists to unify resources in support of common legal outcomes. Current fundraising activity is being used to support the legal defense of landmark medical marijuana patient Jason Beinor.

http://facebook.com/oneloveforbeinor

About ACT 4 Colorado

ACT for Colorado is a member driven organization of independent cannabis professionals organized and dedicated to ensuring patient access to quality medicine from diverse local sources through advocacy and education. ACT represents over 100 small and mid-sized businesses across Colorado. To learn more, please visit act4co.org.

About Cannabis Business Alliance

The Cannabis Business Alliance is organized and operated primarily for the purposes of promoting the common business interests of its members by encouraging policies which stimulate economic development for the medical marijuana industry as well as as business in general for Colorado; advising and communicating with members concerning industry best practices; serving as the voice of its members to relevant local, state and national governing bodies; and creating and implementing business events and social activities to promote and enhance the members􀁠 business success.

Learn more at cannabisalliance.org or follow on twitter @Cannabizalliance

Please print, distribute, and attend!

Please print and distribute and encourage ALL to attend!

Both of the above images have been saved in a format for full page printing.

December 12, 2011

Thank you for a successful book tour!

Thank You!

So sorry for the delay in this post folks….it’s been a MADHOUSE! Irvin and I were rear-ended on the 19th as we started our day for the book tour that day. We were on our way to a 10am appointment – and were at the corner of Colorado and 40th……waiting for the red light to change. Well…..out of nowhere – WHAM! We were nailed as we sat there by a gal in a Dodge Stratus. She didn’t even leave a skid mark – and the speed limit was 40mph…..yikes!

We are both ok…..so no worries. Irvin went directly to the hospital that day from the scene, and I got checked out when I got there. We don’t mess around with Irvin’s bone disorder, something like that wreck could really mess him up. We both feel very fortunate to have been in my GMC Safari van and surrounded by all that American Steel to protect us. My side took most of the impact, and I have a pretty severe case of whiplash. Irv got a touch too – and his hip has been bothering him.

I have since been to Montana, and returned. I will be traveling between both states, and working in both. The woman who hit us was insured (Thank heavens!) so we have both been dealing with the insurance company, and treatment for our injuries. For me, computer work has been murdersome, and I am finally getting to where I can sit and type some. My range of motion in my neck and shoulders has been greatly reduced, and I look forward to the day I can change lanes on these crazy Denver highways with no pain.

Back to book tour thank yous!

We would like to extend a sincere apology to the two shops we missed that morning. Kind Love, and The Giving Tree – so sorry we missed your stops that day. I called the shops from the crash and told them, and we hope to make their places next time Irv is in town. I will be calling to book them when we plan the next tour. We are looking at January – so please folks – if any of you want Irvin in your shop – contact us as soon as possible! 406-594-7932 or 720-326-6577 or 954-536-9011. I can start the list and will book you folks first when we figure out dates.

It still amazes me how many folks don’t know we have Federal Patients……we have to change that! I’m hoping to get over to the Western Slope soon……and want to book a tour that direction as well.

When Irvin landed on the 15th – we hit the floor running! We attended a MMIG meeting that night, as well as attending meetings with Act 4 Co and the Cannabis Business Alliance throughout the week. The CSMCC – Colorado Springs Medical Cannabis Council – threw a mixer on Friday night, where we met a LOT of folks, hung out with Dr. Bob and company, and just had a great time. It was great to meet all the different folks from the trade groups, and see their different missions and roles in medical cannabis in Colorado. We look forward to meeting more, and being involved with each and every one of them at one level or another. Through Colorado Connect we hope to introduce each and every one of you to the different groups, and encourage you to pick the one or select more than one if you choose, that fits your mindset and goals for your future in this great new industry. Each group has it’s own strengths, and they ALL need your support to do the best job we can. We are all fighting toward the same end result here, and there is a LOT of passion in and about this industry. It is so exciting to witness and be a part of!

Thank you again to each and every one of you who hosted us in your shops. There were quite a few who had us a second time….and we loved seeing you again! We hope to develop long lasting relationships with all of you, and we are here to help any way we can.

Please, feel free to call us anytime. The numbers are listed above. Let’s plan another tour for January – and get Irvin scheduled into the key places we may need him. Think we might need him for session? We might be able to arrange that, with the right planning. He is a great voice to have speak on behalf of patient rights.

There will be another post coming directly – as today – we go to Eagle Colorado to chase down John Suthers…….stay tuned.