Day: October 2, 2010

Adams debates medical marijuana dispensaries with proponent

By HERB SWETT For the Keizertimes Ballot Measure 74, which would establish a system of state-regulated medical marijuana dispensaries, was debated before the Salem City Club on Sept. 24 at Mission Mill Museum. The debaters were Police Chief H. Marc Adams of Keizer, who opposed it, and John Sajo, executive director of the Voter Power Foundation in Portland and chief co-author and petitioner for the measure. In his opening statement, Adams said the state law legalizing marijuana for medical purposes had been “bootlegged” in that people growing it for medical purposes had been selling it to businesses that are selling pot and accessories for recreational purposes, making pot unavailable for people determined by physicians to need it. The Oregon Association of Chiefs of Police, he said, does not oppose marijuana to treat illnesses but opposes dispensaries for it. Noting that doctors recommend rather than prescribe pot, Adams said that although it was anticipated when the drug was legalized in 1998 that about 2,000 Oregonians would have medical marijuana cards, now 36,280 people in the state have them. He argued that if Measure 74 passes, dispensaries will multiply and Oregon will have the problems Los Angeles and Denver now have. “We’re not talking medicine,” he said. “We’re talking drugs for profit.” Sajo, in his opening statement, said, “The problem for Oregon law is that it just doesn’t have a supply system.”...

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