Posts Tagged ‘reason.tv’

Rabbi Fights Feds to Keep Medical Marijuana Dispensary Open

Here is a video from Reason.TV showcasing Rabbi Jeffrey Kahn of Washington, DC’s struggle to keep his dispensary open in the face of being harassed by the federal government. (thanks for the video post!): —-


“”[The federal government] should know who is a pot dealer and who is not. For them to pretend otherwise is ridiculous,” says Rabbi Jeffrey Kahn. Kahn, an ordained rabbi who has served congregations for over 30 years, is opening a medical marijuana dispensary in Washington, D.C. this summer alongside his wife. Kahn says the federal government has made it impossible for him to get a bank account for his small business.

Medical marijuana is legal in D.C. and 18 states, but it’s still illegal under federal law. This means that even though Kahn is abiding by D.C. law, banks won’t work with his business for fear of losing FDIC protection–or worse. Kahn says he has not been able to open a bank account with any financial institution. If he is forced to be a cash-only business, he will be more vulnerable to crime and IRS auditing.

About 4 minutes.

Produced by Amanda Winkler. Shot by Todd Kranin and Winkler. Narrated by Kranin. Additional help by Joshua Swain.”

10 Years to Life for Medical Marijuana: The Trial of Aaron Sandusky

This is a great video I found from Reason.TV about Aaron Sandusky.

From the video description: “This is a Constitutional battle, and we’re going to defend our rights,” says Aaron Sandusky, the owner of a medical marijuana dispensary in Upland, California who now faces federal drug trafficking charges even though he was operating within California state law.

Reason.tv first profiled Sandusky in late 2011 in the midst of a federal crackdown on marijuana dispensaries across California, which occurred despite repeated promises from the Obama administration to lay off operators compliant with state law (Incidentally, the city of Upland, which initiated the legal action against G3, admitted in court that Sandusky was operating within state law). During the production of that video, Sandusky’s storefront and grow house were raided, his assets seized and his product destroyed. But Sandusky was undeterred and joined a lawsuit with several other dispensary owners, challenging the right of city governments to outright ban dispensaries. After a favorable ruling from an appellate court, Sandusky re-opened, and the city of Upland was powerless to stop him. But the Feds were not happy with this outcome.

Sandusky was arrested and charged with six counts of drug trafficking, some of which could carry a life sentence. He’s spent the last seven weeks in a county prison, just awaiting a bond hearing. He finally was granted bail last Friday and is now out on house arrest, where he awaits an October trial to decide his fate. He agreed to sit down with Reason.tv for an interview to discuss his case, the state of medical marijuana in this country, and why this is a cause for which he’s willing to risk it all.

“If I have to go to jail for 20 years defending this, then so be it,” says Sandusky.

About 6 minutes

Produced by Zach Weissmueller. Camera by Tracy Oppenheimer.

Visit¬†http://reason.tv¬†for downloadable versions, and subscribe to ReasonTV’s YouTube Channel to receive notifications when new material goes live.”


Transplants denied for Medical Marijuana patients


Another clip that has me quite angry and sad! Found this on Reason.TV as well as the blurb below:

“Norman Smith seemed to be making progress in his liver cancer recovery at Cedars-Sinai hospital in Los Angeles, Calif. He had some of the best doctors in the world, he was on a transplant list and he had completed a successful clinical trial that had his doctors dubbing him a “miracle man.”

Then, his cancer returned and two months before he was would have received a transplant, he was de-listed for smoking marijuana prescribed by his oncologist at Cedars-Sinai. Now, if he doesn’t receive a transplant, he will die.

“It’s only my life that I’m fighting for,” says Smith. “What do I have to hide? I have nothing to hide.”

Smith’s situation represents one of the first battles being fought over the place of medical marijuana in medicine and it has left him in limbo.

Cedars-Sinai declined interview requests but referred Reason TV to Peggy Stewart, a clinical social worker with UCLA’s transplant program, which holds a similar position to Cedars-Sinai on medical marijuana.

“Marijuana is considered substance abuse,” says Stewart. “The legality of it is really not an issue.”

Stewart and Cedars-Sinai did say that transplant patients who consume marijuana put themselves at potential risk of infection from a mold found in cannabis called aspergillus.

But not everyone sees the mold as a potential threat.

“The truth is that Norman lives in Los Angeles and there are laboratories that he can take his medicine to and make sure that it doesn’t have contaminants,” says Stephanie Sherer of Americans for Safe Access , which works to break down political and legal barriers to medical cannabis.

Further, a 2009 study from the American Journal on Transplantation that looked at potential liver transplant candidates said that there wasn’t a significant difference between marijuana users from marijuana non-users.

Sherer points out that Smith isn’t alone, his problems are the reality for many patients caught in-between managing their pain and receiving a transplant.

“In our database at our office, we know of over two dozen patients that are going through this and unfortunately half of them have passed away because they did not receive these transplants,” says Smith.

Music by audionautix.com and freeplaymusic.com

About 6:48 minutes. Written and produced by Paul Detrick. Camera by Alex Manning, Zach Weissmuller and Jim Epstein.

Go to http://www.reason.tv for downloadable versions and subscribe to Reason.tv’s YouTube Channel to receive automatic updates when new material goes live.”

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