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  • July 28, 2017

    I Wanna Be Down: Smooth sounds of rhythm and blues

    Toking Tunes returns with a mellow playlist, featuring R&B sounds from the 90s to today.

    After our brief hiatus, we return with a soulful, R&B-tinged playlist. Opening with ‘I Wanna Be Down’ from Brandy’s 1994 eponymous album, the playlist traverses ’90s essentials, as well as more recent ventures.

    The playlist also features tunes from contemporary artists like Alexandria and Childish Gambino and the classic title tune from Aaliyah’s 1994 Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number.

  • July 27, 2017

    Senate committee, Kushner push back against Sessions

    Jared Kushner, the criminal justice reformer, a Senate committee approves medical marijuana protections, and more in today's newsletter.

    Jared Kushner, chief ally of drug sentencing reformers? The son-in-law and adviser to president Trump includes criminal justice reform among his many responsibilities. He’s been in talks with lawmakers and criminal justice organizations about the issue, including moving away from mandatory minimums for non-violent drug offenders. Such a change would put him at odds with attorney general Jeff Sessions who is promoting the policy as part of his tough-on-crime agenda.

  • July 26, 2017

    Congressmen introduce new cannabis research bill

    A bipartisan group promote marijuana research, House Republicans block cannabis votes, and more in today's newsletter.

    Congressmen introduce marijuana research bill. A bipartisan group of congressmen have introduced a new bill that would make it easier for researchers to study cannabis by removing some of the bureaucratic red tape surrounding the process. It would also allow for private companies to grow research marijuana, which is now currently monopolized by NIDA and the University of Mississippi.

  • July 25, 2017

    Advocates sue Sessions and the DEA, challenging the CSA

    Lawsuit claims marijuana in the CSA is unconstitutional, Congress to consider a variety of cannabis amendments, and more in today's newsletter.

    Suing Sessions and the DEA. Five plaintiffs have filed a federal lawsuit against attorney general Jeff Sessions and the DEA, claiming that marijuana’s Schedule I status is unconstitutional. The plaintiffs include retired NFL player-turned cannabis entrepreneur Marvin Washington, three medical marijuana patients (including two children and one veteran),

  • July 24, 2017

    Some fear a DOJ crackdown on cannabis could be coming

    The Justice Department will reconsider its marijuana policies, the House considers MMJ for vets, and more in today's newsletter.

    Fears that DOJ will crack down on cannabis. Attorney general Jeff Sessions’ Task Force on Crime Reduction and Public Safety is expected to release a review next week on the Justice Department’s marijuana policies. Given Sessions’ rhetoric linking cannabis to violent crime, some advocates are worried that harsher policies are to come.

  • July 12, 2017

    Behind RRNY, a campaign to legalize marijuana in New York

    A once-in-20-year chance to put the issue before voters

    Marijuana is still illegal in New York, but that did not stop more than 4,000 people from descending on the Javits Center in Manhattan for a cannabis-industry conference in June. Longtime activists in blazers decorated with weed leaves mingled among Wall Street types in crisp suits. But one man stood out among the well-heeled crowd.

  • July 11, 2017

    How cannabis patents could lead to future lawsuits

    Why would anyone patent a Schedule I substance?

    It’s hard to make sense of cannabis regulation.

    The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) continues to categorize marijuana as a Schedule I drug. That means the government believes it has “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse,” putting it in the same league as LSD and heroin.

  • July 7, 2017

    Cannabinoid receptors aren’t what we thought, finds new research

    The "lock-and-key" model isn't quite right, employers reconsider the drug test, and more in today's newsletter.

    We’re going on vacation. This editor is taking a two-week break from this newsletter and the maddening pace of news on the internet. We’ll be back with our regular dispatches on July 24! 🌳

    Cannabinoid receptors are actually quite malleable. Scientists have long thought that cannabinoid receptors worked like a lock and key with cannabinoids.

  • Spiritual State: Hip-hop-infused electronic sounds from Koop, Tokimonsta, and more

    Departing from the warm sounds of influential Japanese producer Nujabes, this week’s playlist features a range of dreamy tunes.

    Nujabes’ ‘Spiritual State’ opens this week’s playlist — the first track from the eponymous album. Released posthumously, it’s a beautiful release from a producer gone far too soon. Enjoy part of his influential soundtrack for the anime Samurai Champloo here.

    The rest of this week’s selections follow a similar tangent.

  • July 6, 2017

    Inside the fight for Peter Tosh’s son

    Jawara McIntosh resisted a plea deal, MMJ patient sues over wrongful termination, and more in today's newsletter.

    Inside the fight for Jawara McIntosh. The son of the late reggae icon Peter Tosh is in a coma after sustaining a traumatic brain injury from a jail beating. McIntosh was serving a one-year sentence after pleading guilty to possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. “Jawara would have preferred to fight against what he saw as the unjust criminalization of cannabis in an open court,”