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Marijuana: Colorado Education Association opposing Amendment 64

kerrie dallman 2012.jpg
Kerrie Dallman.
Update below: At an 11 a.m. press conference, representatives of the Colorado Education Association, the state's largest teachers union, will announce their opposition to Amendment 64, the Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Act.

Backers of the measure portray it as pro-education, with proceeds from an excise tax earmarked for the Public School Capital Construction Assistance Fund. But the CEA sees a disconnect, says a 64 opposition spokeswoman.

"I think this puts to rest the proponents' rationale that you can fund schools with pot money, and that it will be acceptable to people," says Laura Chapin of Smart Colorado, the main No on 64 group.

amie baca oehlert.jpg
Amie Baca-Oehlert.
According to Chapin, CEA president Kerrie Dallman and vice president Amie Baca-Oehlert will speak on behalf of the CEA. She points out that both of them have teaching backgrounds; Dallman is a high-school social studies teacher currently on leave from Jefferson County, while Baca-Oehlert is taking a similar leave from Adams County, where she works as a high-school counselor.

The CEA board voted to oppose Amendment 64 earlier this month. Regarding the reasons for this decision, Chapin says, "You've seen the multiple reports about the increase of marijuana use among kids in Colorado. And for teachers, something that basically legalizes recreational use on a broad scale is incompatible with the mission of educating kids."

Of course, proponents point out that Amendment 64 only allows folks who are age 21 and over to possess small amounts of marijuana. Moreover, they argue that a regulated system will do a better job of keeping weed away from kids because licensed vendors, unlike drug dealers, will ID customers before any sale can take place.

According to Chapin, another reason for the CEA's opposition involves the measure's "whole mechanism for school funding -- an excise tax that has to be run through another ballot measure before it can even be applied." And even if such a tax is passed, she goes on, "their top concern is kids and the whole idea that you shouldn't be funding schools with pot."

The news conference takes place at 11 a.m. in the Primrose Room at the organization's headquarters, 1500 Grant Street.

Update, 12:24 p.m. September 19: The Amendment 64 campaign has issued a press release responding to the Colorado Education Association's opposition to the measure, made public a short time ago. Included are assertions that the CEA actually suggested that revenue from the proposal go to schools, only to subsequently flip-flop under political pressure. Here's the complete release:

Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Responds to the Colorado Education Association's Opposition to Amendment 64

Statement below from campaign advocacy director Betty Aldworth

DENVER -- The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol has issued the following statement in response to the Colorado Education Association's announcement that its opposes Amendment 64, the initiative to regulate and tax marijuana like alcohol in Colorado:

"We're sorry to hear the Colorado Education Association has been convinced to embrace a position counter to the interests of students and parents. In fact, it was CEA that suggested tax revenue raised through the initiative should benefit public school construction in Colorado. We agreed it would be a good use of new revenue, and we are proud to say that Amendment 64 would direct tens of millions of dollars per year toward improving Colorado schools. [See http://www.RegulateMarijuana.org/economic-impact for data.]

"It's odd that our opponents are criticizing the idea of Amendment 64 directing new revenue toward public school construction, as it was embraced by the CEA when it contributed that very idea during the drafting process. In fact, when we consulted with CEA during the drafting of the initiative they indicated they would be remaining neutral on the issue, but that's politics for you. It's understandable that an organization like CEA would want to toe the line of the powers that be, but it's unfortunate that they are playing politics when the future of Colorado schools -- and the health and safety of our children -- are at stake.

"CEA also ignored evidence from our federal government showing that, since Colorado began regulating medical marijuana, use among teens has decreased and fewer students are now reporting they they are being offered drugs at school. It is unfortunate that they were swayed by our opponents' fear-mongering and baseless claims that regulating marijuana like alcohol and actually controlling the product will somehow increase teen use. We're sorry to hear our opponents and the CEA are satisfied with the revenue from non-medical marijuana sales flowing into the underground market where it is helping cartels in Mexico rather than the people of Colorado. We believe we would be better off with revenues benefiting our society, and we're confident the voters will agree." [See http://www.RegulationWorks.org for data.]

More from our Marijuana archive: "Marijuana: John Hickenlooper compares teen pot smoking to underage drinking."


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55 comments
kevin_hunt
kevin_hunt

Vote YES on A64.

 

Do you suppose the Colorado Education Association knows that their biggest ally is supported by the "Teen Torture King"?

 

Melvin Sembler, a Florida State Co-Chair for Romney’s finance committee ran a chain of teen drug "rehab" clinics (Straight, Inc) that had a track record of extreme abuse.  This abuse included kids being thrown against walls, held against their will, kidnapped, restrained in leg irons, forced into servitude, and raped."

 

Melvin has donated over $100,000 to "Smart Colorado" in an attempt to keep marijuana illegal.

 

http://www.thenation.com/blog/170007/gop-mogul-behind-drug-rehab-torture-centers-bankrolling-opposition-pot-legalization-colo

Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

This is about the ONLY group I

can see having a complaint or concern  ....

Mary Montaño
Mary Montaño

If you legalize it, there would be more money tenfold for schools (remember schools are severely diminished in their funds, SEVERELY).Seems to me as if there is a crusade to ruin America's, and mainly Colorado's, future...It can all be solved with marijuana taxation. And not only schools, but all of Colorado's governmental money woes. And all of Colorado's money woes, in general. Hello!!! I'd rather have kids smoking weed than getting HOOKED on alcohol (legal, advertising with half naked women, all around schools) or even worse, Methamphetemine, Cocaine, Crack Cocaine, and the most popular, prescription narcotics stolen from a parents medicine cabinet..These are the things that produce junkies..These are the things funds should be focusing on, for teen prevention. And Marijuana can make it possible to provide more than enough funds for anything, and everything, concerning Colorado.

nemopunk15
nemopunk15 topcommenter

I have issues with the theory that we need a second vote to pass the taxes in A-64. Were about to vote on the whole Amendment, not just part of it, why the need for a second vote?

 

And I thought schools needed money? Guess i won't be voting for any increases to the education budget, i hear they are covered.

santor420
santor420

It's a shame the Colorado Education Association wants us to support the gangs and cartels that sell marijuana to children and perpetrate violence. Why do you support the black market instead of regulated outlets? Since the main result of this is that gangs and cartels keep their lucrative market selling to children with no competition from legal suppliers who don't, one wonders why the Colorado Education Association wants children to have greater access to marijuana? Or do they just prefer gangs and cartels to legal regulated supplies?

Monkey
Monkey

Pro A64: Anyone against A64 helps Mexican cartels.

Anti A64: If A64 passes, kids will be too high to learn.

I'm sick of you both, and I'm tired of the lies from both sides. A64 wont have any effect on kids or Mexico. If anything, it will draw more federal attention and local legislation. 

Rachel K. Gillette
Rachel K. Gillette

The NO on 64 campaign is just making things up as they go along. Their Dr. Thurstone was paid by the Dept. of Ed. to "study" teens and MJ. Thurstone's "studies" ignore all the facts, legitimate research, and real statistics. What a surprise. Can't fool me! As a parent of two teens, I look forward to voting YES on 64! Regulation works.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

P.S.  CEA:  when others blame teachers' unions for the ills of education, I will no longer attempt to defend you.  I will relish my vote against misgovernment and for Amendments 64 & 65 (support for campaign finance reform).  The Amendments are genuinely worthy of support, even if no person on the November ballot is!  Has the CEA taken a stand on Amendment 65?

LAUrbanNerd
LAUrbanNerd

@ByronTau @MikeRiggs well that's ironic, considering A64 would direct $40M a year towards school construction

Anne Marie
Anne Marie

This is disturbing on many levels but the greatest is the outright lie that there exists multiple reports of increased teen marijuana use. You are teachers, how can you be so uneducated??? This is why we are failing as a society. The CDC and the study done by the University of Denver and Montana State University, say teen pot use is down in Colorado since the passage of medical marijuana. In addition perhaps you should read the EU report and the CATO report on the effects of decriminalization in Portugal. You are o.k. with money from alcohol, tobacco, and gambling funding education, but not marijuana. Considering that alcohol and tobacco kill over 7 million people worldwide and marijuana use kills zero, this stance seems ludicrous. Your policy of arrest and incarceration has lead to zero decrease in use, the highest prison population in the world, the wasting of over $1 TRILLION, and the death of 55,000 Mexicans. Prohibition always fails! I expect more of people in positions of authority. Your negligence should be a crime. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/07/marijuana-usage-down-in-t_n_1865095.html http://www.businessinsider.com/portugal-drug-policy-decriminalization-works-2012-7

pirates_r_awesome
pirates_r_awesome

basically this union is like the flying monkeys for the WWW.

pirates_r_awesome
pirates_r_awesome

it's like the school administration is trying to commit suicide. now that's the correct message to send kids.

LeeRich1970
LeeRich1970

@DenverWestword @denverwestword First time I've heard of a teachers union turning down money. #yeson64

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

I stand for teachers' right to collective bargaining, but institutions like the CEA reflect on their members.  If teachers choose as their representatives prohibitionists or panderers to prohibitionists, they stand opposed to American Liberty.  Instead of opining about Amendment 64, the CEA should be explaining who is responsible for the catastrophic failure of public secondary education, and how it is that so many high school graduates in Colorado are academically unqualified.

 

Teachers' representatives are complicitous with school administrations in misrepresenting students' achievement, and this has led to the incredible irony of teachers being blamed for an imagined lack of competence in the subjects they teach.  Teachers and their unions' were politically incompetent not to stand for academic integrity against all the machinations of administrators.  By climbing into the same boat as the authors of the maladministration of public education, the CEA has joined other failed institutions and leaders in endorsing the same tired lies that have permitted parasites to prey upon Americans for the past seventy years.  Supposing that support for Prohibition redounds to any sense that the CEA is improving education is an incredibly stupid and contemptible calculation on the part of the CEA, and members must bear responsibility.

 

My support for existing institutions of public education is fast waning.  Academic fraud and misrepresentation has become the order of the day.  If the CEA seeks to transfer any of the onus for the failure of the institutions of which its members are a part onto cannabis, I take it as evidence of its unfitness to represent teachers and of teachers' failure to select true representatives.  Acting to curtail the criminalization of adults for their use of cannabis has nothing to do with restricting access to cannabis by minors (which schools have been failing to do for many decades), and it is inexcusable for the CEA to support criminal penalties for adults in the hopes that someone will perceive the CEA to be protective of children as a result.  Down with the CEA!

speedgrafic
speedgrafic

Making fun of these women because of their appearance is pretty stupid and does the MMJ movement a disservice. The real argument to make to educators, most of whom care deeply about the lives and success of the children they teach, is that even minor drug-related offenses can deeply impact the ability of their graduates to get their first jobs (which research says are highly predictive of future earnings and welfare) and qualify for federally subsidized financial aid. 

 

I think most of us can agree that marijuana has no place at school, and some of us believe that marijuana shouldn't be used for recreational reasons. But the fact is that these drug laws clearly don't work, and that the harm imposed by making criminals out of small-time drug users greatly outweighs the benefit to society that these laws offer.

Clayton Capra
Clayton Capra

Typical. They'll trot out similar groups in weeks to come. I am continually amazed at how many people still live in a refer madness state of mind.

andrewkboyle
andrewkboyle

@MikeRiggs Oh hell...you mean there is more than one teachers union in by beloved Colorado?

jim.luethye
jim.luethye

Clearly these women are not interested in the facts, or teaching children. They're only concerned about propagating their own version of morality. Schools are already funded by pot money. What do you thin happens to the taxes currently collected for medical marijuana? Along with taxes collected on cigarettes, tobacco, and gambling. You don't get to choose how your school gets funded, when you're part of the public school system! Ignorance should not serve as the educators of our children.

Jake
Jake

So slap them on the hand if they show up drunk and/or on pills but an arrest for pot?  Hypocritical.  Just shows how uneducated our supposed educators are.

Michael Cano
Michael Cano

As usual people who don't do research don't understand

Keloid
Keloid

Shit, ladies, we'll keep the money, no problem. Then you can continue to teach social studies using books that indicate that one day women might be able to vote, and black people might be able to own property. And that scientists dream of magical flying machines called "Aeromobiles" that might whisk us from place to place in as little as two days of traveling! Oh, those ideals sound outdated in today's society? Well, now you know how your completely baseless vilification of marijuana sounds to those of us who live in a modern world. I weep for your students.

Matt Leising
Matt Leising

Also, pretty sure the last study confirmed marijuana use in teenagers is down since MMJ began in Colorado so maybe double check those studies too?

eldaveablo
eldaveablo

Glad to know the schools are so well funded that they can turn down money the citizens of Denver are voting to give them. 

awesomesauce
awesomesauce

You would think that people who call themselves "educators" would be interested in the FACTS instead of bullshit propaganda...but we are talking about a union, here, I guess.

 

Once again: TEEN CANNABIS USE RATES IN CO HAVE DECLINED IN THE LAST DECADE ACCORDING TO US GOVERNMENT STUDIES. THESE WOMEN ARE LYING WHEN THEY CLAIM OTHERWISE.

 

This is a fine example of why the quality of public education is in rapid decline in the US: "teachers" are more interested in promoting their own ignorant perspectives on morality and culture than they are in providing the tools students need to learn vital critical thinking and analysis skills. If these people really cared about teaching students to think critically they would provide them with facts from both sides and allow them to make up their own minds. Instead, they are attempting to tell students, parents and society they should believe what they are told by those in authority.

 

This is the exact opposite of what education is supposed to accomplish. These women and the rest of the union are not educators, they serve as Indoctrination Supervisors for the Prohibitionist Prison-Industrial Complex.

Gabe Romero
Gabe Romero

That's obviously a political move, how many parents would be excited if the schools were supporting the usage of "drugs"?

awesomesauce
awesomesauce

An extensive number of CO University Professors have signed on as endorsing 64: I don't think a union staffed by these unemployed "educators" is going to make much of a difference.

 

A non-working social studies teacher and "guidance counselor" (christ, is there a more useless profession? ) who want to tell us that "pot" is bad? How the hell would they know? Do they have ANY knowledge on the subject at all? What qualifies them to even have an opinion worth noting?

 

You would think that the largest "teacher's" union in the state (and remember, they do not represent college instructors at all) would find a better way to expend their energy.

sandydog
sandydog

""I think this puts to rest the proponents' rationale that you can fund schools with pot money, and that it will be acceptable to people," says Laura Chapin of Smart Colorado, the main No on 64 group."

 

Aren't the schools funded by taxes from alcohol and cigarettes as well as all the other stuff taxes are collected on?

Matt Leising
Matt Leising

My thoughts are our schools are underfunded in the billions and MMJ is one of the only things keeping our schools open. I think they should do some research before tearing down their funding

kwame
kwame

take a look at THOSE goofy lookin broads. wow. How smart can you be w/ a mug like that ? 

kwame
kwame

 @speedgrafic This might blow your mind but ... most of the MMJ "Movement" is also in opposition to A64.

kwame
kwame

 @speedgrafic who said I was part of the MMJ Movement? I just hate uppity ugly bitches. 

speedgrafic
speedgrafic

 @jim.luethye Schools are funded by locally assessed property taxes, not "pot money", which goes into the state general fund.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

 @Keloid I think I studied from the very textbook you describe, Keloid! Thanks.

kwame
kwame

 @eldaveablo damn get this guy a soundbite on 9News , in yo face !

Matt_in_Boulder
Matt_in_Boulder

 @sandydog Google is your friend. 

 

"Colorado public schools receive funding from a variety of sources. However, most revenues to Colorado's 178 school districts are provided through the Public School Finance Act of 1994 (as amended). In budget year 2012-13, this legislation provides for over $5.3 billion of funding to Colorado school districts via state taxes ($3.4 billion), local specific ownership (vehicle registration) taxes ($132.7 million), and local property taxes ($1.8 billion). Moneys provided via the Public School Finance Act of 1994 are available to each school district to fund the costs of providing public education. Follow the links below for more information."

http://www.cde.state.co.us/index_finance.htm

Jake
Jake

 @kwame

 

We need to stop the personal attacks, they do nothing to help.  These people are wrong on so many levels, pick one vs. calling them goofy.

kevin_hunt
kevin_hunt

 @michael.roberts Thanks for the link to another interesting article.  Keep 'em coming.

 

I like WW forums a lot more now that I don't have to deal with personal attacks from Donkey Hotay.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

 @kwame  @speedgrafic BS!  You just cannot focus on anything further away than your navel -- only a handful pf people who use cannabis are crazy enough to oppose legalizing growing and using some.

Jason
Jason

 @kwame  @speedgraficAccording to whom?  Back up your statements with facts, oh that's right you can't........

 

speedgrafic
speedgrafic

 @kwame No one gives a shit that you hate "uppity ugly bitches" - literally nobody, and if you made that comment around your Burger King boss, you'd be fired. The MMJ movement is against A64 primarily because they want to make money - again, I don't give a shit about bigots or people looking to make money off the issue, I just want to make sure kids don't lose their future because of a drug rap.

Al_Swearengen
Al_Swearengen

 @speedgrafic  @jim.luethye On top of that, parents don't want their kid's teachers to be publically supporting recreational drugs.  We don't need the teachers' support to pass this, everybody leave them alone.

kwame
kwame

 @Jake Who is we? Are we on the same side? I am opposed to ugly bitches opening their ugly mouths all the time. 

speedgrafic
speedgrafic

 @TheSpleen  @kwame What? I smoke marijuana recreationally pretty consistently. Maybe you should reread what I posted, you seem a little slow and angry.

TheSpleen
TheSpleen

 @speedgrafic  @kwame Yeah, just like no one here gives a shit that YOU think that "recreational" cannabis use shouldn't be supported. Go fuck yourself.

Matt_in_Boulder
Matt_in_Boulder

 @Al_Swearengen  @speedgrafic  @jim.luethye It would be easier to leave them alone if they kept themselves out of the spotlight.  I don't remember anyone asking what the CEA thinks of A64.  They are the ones who chose to go public with their (misinformed, ignorant) opinion...

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