VOLUME V / Issue 4
FROM THE EDITORS
We hope that everyone had a relaxing Winter Break and is back in the swing of school after the first few weeks. We want to thank Law Students for Sensible Drug Policy for teaming up with us on this issue to bring you articles on how U.S. policies and laws on drug use affect all of us. SSDP is presenting a symposium on Saturday, February 21, 2015 from 8:30 to 5:30 in EDU 1111 titled Critical Perspectives on the Drug War. As the title suggests, the symposium will have panels on the short comings and costs of War on Drugs, U.S. policy, and the impact on related areas such as research, health, and the transformative impact of legalization efforts. Attorneys can receive 5.75 hours of MCLE Credit for attending. More information can be found here.
Thank you to everyone who submitted an article for this issue. We’re looking forward to another semester of muckraking at UCI Law!
Jeremy Cowan and Anna Rea
Over the past decade, several states have passed Medical Amnesty (or “Good Samaritan”) laws that provide limited immunity to the victim and to the caller for help in an emergency drug or alcohol overdose situation. Data shows that a call for help is made in fewer than 50% of cases involving a drug or alcohol overdose in America. Often, bystanders are afraid of being punished for drug possession or for being near drugs. Data indicates that by removing the barriers that prevent people from seeking help, lives can be saved. READ MORE.
Cannabidiol (“CBD”) is the lesser known, non-psychoactive chemical that can be extracted alongside Tetrahydrocannabinol (“THC”) from the Cannabis Sativa L plant. Recent cannabis research has uncovered the anti-spasmodic, anti-epileptic, anti-anxiety, and anti-psychotic properties of this cannabinoid. CBD is used amongst epileptics and cancer patients nationwide. A provision in the 2014 Farm Bill that allows for the cultivation of industrial hemp from the Cannabis Sativa L plant with a THC content of “not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis” is silent on the increasingly popular CBD. As a result, cannabis growers across the country are extracting CBD oil from industrial hemp for medical marijuana patients across the country. READ MORE.
The Students for a Sensible Drug Policy mission statement begins with this sentence: Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP) is the only international network of students dedicated to ending the war on drugs. The concept of the War on Drugs is not a simple one, and it can be confusing to understand exactly what makes a “sensible drug policy,” because there is no set answer to this complex question. Drug policy reform must start with awareness. One of our goals at SSDP is to help people find the answer to the question: How do I know if I am against the War on Drugs? READ MORE.
Since the HIV panic of the 1980s, Congress has prohibited using federal funds for needle exchange programs. Instead, states that chose to establish needle exchanges were forced to pay for and operate them on their own with no federal assistance. This hindered efforts to make such programs widely accepted and available to people who needed them and was a setback to the goal of saving lives. In 2009, President Obama lifted the federal prohibition on funding needle exchange programs, but the glimmer of hope was short-lived. In 2011, Republican-controlled Congress reinstated the ban, which is how the situation stands today. READ MORE.
As you read this right now, only seven hours north of us, parties are preparing for final arguments in U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller’s chambers to evaluate the current scientific research on marijuana use and to “determine whether the Schedule 1 designation is unconstitutional.” READ MORE.
Claire–Lise Kutlay’s latest recommendations: Black Market Bakery and Tomikawa Sushi Bar Restaurant. READ MORE.
To be honest, part of me wishes that UCI Law could avoid being ranked all together. But I wonder if you think that the atmosphere at UCI might change post-ranking, and if so, what your suggestions would be to keep the unique atmosphere here. Do you think it’s possible to dictate the “culture” of an institution? READ MORE.