Tag: Politico

Too Many Veterans Are Still Being Forced Into the Illegal Market

Monday was Memorial Day, when the United States takes a day to remember members of our armed forces that gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country. Unfortunately, our nation doesn’t do enough for veterans and their families. Too often, supporting our troops is just a slogan, and our government doesn’t put in place the services and policies to adequately address the needs of those that signed up to protect us. From their pay to their healthcare, we need to do better for those currently in the military and those that have moved back into the private sector. Cannabis policy is certainly no exception and it’s past time that our veterans be allowed to utilize cannabis without fear. Unfortunately, Uncle Sam is pushing too many veterans into the illegal, underground market.

Politico reports:

Even as marijuana legalization continues to expand across the country (33 states have some form of legal marijuana on their books and well-known former politicians have becomes spokesmen for the cannabis industry), many of the nation’s 18.2 million veterans occupy an uncomfortable limbo between rapidly liberalizing cultural attitudes and an unbending federal standard that hasn’t changed since the 1970s. Veterans looking for alternatives to addictive and dangerous opioids and other pharmaceuticals are effectively prevented from using marijuana, by price, policy and quite often the ongoing stigma that marijuana still carries.

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Veterans are also a group in crisis. A 2012 report by the Department of Veterans Affairs found that up to 22 veterans were dying by suicide daily. While the VA has since lowered that statistic, some veterans’ advocacy groups say that number is probably much higher—closer to 50 a day—when opioid overdoses and despair over opioid addiction are taken into account.

The VA and lawmakers “need to understand how important cannabis is to veterans,” says Patrick Seifert, a Marine Corps veteran who founded the Twenty22Many advocacy group in Olympia, Washington. “There’s no demographic that benefits more from cannabis.”

With evidence showing that medical cannabis access helping opioid patients decrease their use of addictive narcotics and a reduction in opioid prescriptions overall, it is time that the federal government do right by our veterans and allow medicinal cannabis as a part of their healthcare. They’ve given too much to be forced to buy from the unregulated, illegal market or to take more addictive and lethal drugs. Let’s not pay lip service to supporting the military. Allowing cannabis use won’t fix all of the problems facing our service members and veterans, but it’s a start.

A friendly reminder that Kind Leaf provides a 15% discount to all registered Oregon Medical Marijuana Program patients and a 10% discount to all veterans. Order online or come on into the store and peruse the biggest and best inventory in the Great Northwest.

Med Men Debacle Illustrates the Value of Supporting Craft Cannabis Boutiques

Splashy corporate mergers and big stock deals make for great headlines, but for those with a lot of experience in the cannabis industry, we know that the so-called “Green Rush” has been much more hype than substance when it comes to long-term success. Quality products and solid business practices that build strong relationships with top-notch companies and local communities go much further than a shaky foundation built upon public relations and marketing. Politico’s expose of Med Men illustrates the benefit of supporting craft cannabis boutiques like Pendleton’s Kind Leaf instead of multinational corporations that are only about the bottom dollar.

From Politico’s “Lavish Parties, Greedy Pols and Panic Rooms: How the ‘Apple of Pot’ Collapsed:

In October of 2018, MedMen announced a deal to purchase PharmaCann, an Illinois-based retailer with operations in several states, for nearly $700 million in stock. It was to be the largest-ever cannabis acquisition in the U.S., and the move played well with investors.

But by the end of the year, the spending and the bravado began to catch up with Bierman. In the second half 2018 alone, MedMen lost more than $130 million according to its disclosures.

In November, two MedMen subsidiaries were hit with a class-action lawsuit in a Los Angeles court alleging labor law violations. At the time, a MedMen spokesman told Marijuana Business Daily, “We offer competitive compensation and strive to cultivate a thriving work environment.” The case remains ongoing.

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In April, cannabis sales in Florida set a record. Yet in the first week of May, in the latest sign of corporate distress, MedMen shuttered five of its eight retail locations in the state, a move it is describing as temporary. In contrast to the company’s ballyhooed store openings, the closures came abruptly and without explanation.

While companies like Kind Leaf don’t make international headlines, they chug along, doing what they do best: providing top-shelf cannabis and products while helping build up their local community and burgeoning industry. By supplying the biggest selection of strains and instituting programs that uplift local families and the city of Pendleton, Kind Leaf has become an example for others to follow. Sustained success over time and doing good deeds are simply good business practices that can help any company weather any storm. As members of the cannabis community, let’s seek out and support craft cannabis boutiques like Kind Leaf over the Apple-of-Cannabis wannabees looking to cash in big for their executives and shareholders.

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