Brazil: Supreme Court Rules Pro-Marijuana Marches Are Legal

The Brazilian Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that marches in favor of marijuana legalization can take place. The decision overturns various lower-court decisions that had banned them as "apology for drug use" and "support of drug trafficking." The ruling came on a unanimous 8-0 vote.

Brazil: Supreme Court Rules Pro-Marijuana Marches Are Legal.

The court held that the marches must be allowed if authorities were to respect the rights of freedom of expression and the right to assemble. The marches are a way for citizens to exercise their rights, Justice Celso de Mello said. "Nothing proves more harmful and dangerous than the desire of the state to repress freedom of expression, especially of ideas that the majority repudiate.

Thought should always be free," De Mello said. In 1997 police arrested members of the band Planet Hemp, immediately following a Sao Paulo show they had recorded for evidence. Police charged the band members with lyrics supporting the use of maconha (marijuana). Pro-pot legalization marches associated with the Global Marijuana March the first weekend in May each year began in Brazil in Rio de Janeiro and have since popped up in other cities across the country. Beginning in 2008, local courts began banning them, arguing that they were a justification for drug use.

Just a month before this ruling, riot police in Sao Paulo attacked with tear gas and batons more than 1,000 marchers who had gathered despite a ban on the march. Next year, they won't have the excuse of illegality to repress the pot parade.

Norway: Import of medical cannabis possible

A Norwegian citizen suffering from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is allowed to import cannabis of the Dutch company Bedrocan from a Dutch 
pharmacy to Norway.

The cannabis was confiscated by the border police in March. However, the police has now finally closed the case of Svein Berg since he was acting in agreement with article 75 of the Schengen agreement. Mr. Berg is now free to import cannabis from the Netherlands for one month of personal use.

USA: Maine House Rejects Marijuana Legalization Bill

The Maine House voted overwhelmingly Tuesday to reject a bill that would have brought the state closer to legalizing marijuana for recreational use.

The bill failed on a vote of 107-39. Introduced by Sen. Diane Russell (D-Portland), the bill, LD 1453, would have legalized the possession and cultivation of marijuana for personal use and placed a 7% tax on pot sales. But the bill was amended in committee to propose a statewide voter referendum on the issue and to add a caveat that it would not take effect until marijuana was legal under federal law.

USA: Washington - Medical cannabis patients can be fired

Medical cannabis patients can be fired from their jobs in Washington State even if they only use the drug outside the workplace, the Washington Supreme Court ruled on 9 June.

It concluded that, regardless of voter intent, it would be contrary to public policy to force employers to sanction criminal activity, the use of cannabis for medical purposes is still a federal crime.

USA: Cannabis dispensaries

Governor Peter Shumlin signed into law a bill that allows up to four medical cannabis dispensaries in Vermont.

There are now 
eight states that allow dispensaries for cannabis for medical use

Science: THC improves driving ability in a patient with Tourette syndrome

Physicians at the Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich and the Inn-Salzach Hospital, Germany, presented the case of a 42-year-old truck driver with Tourette syndrome since the age of 6.

He exhibited multiple tics and repeatedly standing up and down. Mostly, he was suffering from obsessive thoughts. All standard medications for tic disorders had proven ineffective. After two weeks of a treatment with increasing doses of THC (up to 15 mg a day) tics were significantly 

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June 20th 2011

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