Marijuana showdown: Mason Tvert to take on Patrick Kennedy prior to Project SAM launch

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Mason Tvert.
Project SAM, a national organization that opposes marijuana legalization, is scheduled to formally launch during a 10:30 a.m. press conference today at the Denver Press Club. The event is only open to accredited journalists, but Marijuana Policy Project spokesman and Amendment 64 proponent Mason Tvert is showing up an hour early anyhow, to level hypocrisy charges at Project SAM principal Patrick Kennedy, who'll be attending.

As we reported in this space yesterday, Project SAM (the acronym stands for "Smart Approach to Marijuana") brings together Kennedy, a former Congressman from Rhode Island, with notables such as Newsweek/Daily Beast columnist David Frum, Denver-based addiction specialist (and Amendment 64 task force member) Dr. Christian Thurstone and the University of Florida's Kevin Sabet, a former drug-policy adviser for both the George W. Bush and Barack Obama administrations who spoke to us at length about the organization.

patrick kennedy.jpg
Patrick Kennedy.
According to Sabet, marijuana reformers like Tvert "live off the false dichotomy that the only choices for policy are prohibition and incarceration or legalization. But because we don't fit neatly in either basket, we're trying to have a rational conversation about marijuana in this country led by public health in a bipartisan way that learns from mistakes we made with alcohol and tobacco and also corrects the mistakes our current policy has."

Project SAM favors treatment for arrestees found with marijuana as opposed to incarceration, calling for such individuals to undergo what Sabet refers to as "public-health assessments" to determine if they have a substance-abuse problem. The group also wants to educate the public about what Sabet sees as the "potential pitfalls of legalization" in light of the "300-miles-per-hour freight train heading toward legalization right now." And while he agrees that legal substances such as alcohol and tobacco cause great societal harm, he believes "that horse is out of the barn" -- and he doesn't want marijuana to gallop freely as well.

To Tvert, Project SAM's interest in assessing marijuana users is intrusive and wrongheaded.

"If Patrick Kennedy and his cohorts were talking about education for teenagers caught with marijuana, we wouldn't be objecting," he says. "We might even work with them. But what they're proposing is forcing any person caught with marijuana to be subject to health screenings and be forced into marijuana education classes -- and clearly, this is not in line with the people of Colorado's take on marijuana, and increasingly the entire nation's attitude as well.

"This is just the next effort to keep marijuana illegal. The prohibitionists have learned that lying about marijuana being deadly or contributing to violent behavior has failed to capture the hearts and minds of people. So now they're resorting to making some good arguments in support of ending marijuana prohibition" -- like, for instance, lobbying against jail time and marijuana convictions stigmatizing people who apply for jobs or financial aid -- "in order to maintain it."

As for Kennedy, his participation in Project SAM is "incredibly hypocritical," Tvert believes. "This is an individual whose family in part made a fortune off the sale of alcohol. If he's truly concerned about public health and safety, he should be working to educate the public about the relative harms of alcohol compared to marijuana. But this group isn't intent on providing the whole picture. If Patrick Kennedy wants people to be educated about marijuana, he should start by educating himself."

Tvert also objects to Sabet's arguments equating the risks of marijuana and alcohol.

Continue for more of our interview with Mason Tvert about the Project SAM protest.


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54 comments
jose257
jose257 topcommenter

We the People petition Obama to replace liquor stores with marijuana dispensaries.

http://wh.gov/PHy5

Any liquor store that stops selling alcohol gets an automatic license to sell marijuana.

ZZardozz
ZZardozz

Being a fan of both high speed rail AND cannabis, I want to get on that 300 mph train!   Where can I buy a ticket?

kevin_hunt
kevin_hunt

Sabet, Frum, and Kennedy represent the state-of-the art in prohibitionist technology, which is based on 1920's yellow journalism and 1980's Reagan Propaganda.

It's obvious that Kennedy is protecting the interests of the pharmaceutical industry, since he has taken campaign money from them in the past.

Dr. Sabet is a doctor of public policy (the art of bullshitting), not a medical doctor.  

It wouldn't surprise me if Mel Sembler was backing this anti-marijuana campaign with the hopes of cashing in on the hundreds of thousands of citizens that will be forced to attend his re-education camps in lieu of jail time once 'smart enforcement' is the law of the land.  Sembler has previous experience running 'treatment centers'.

Message to Frum, Sabet, and Kennedy: We WILL ride your drug war slaver asses out of town on a rail!

Melvin Sembler, a Florida State Co-Chair for Mitt 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."

Source: http://www.thefix.com/content/romney-sembler-drug-advisor-teen-rehab-abuse8515


MikeParent
MikeParent

I wonder if Patches told the Officer who arrested him for DUI @ 3am,  "Do you know who I am?"

He's a reprobate who has a Wike Page that reads like a "Rap Sheet".  And marijuana was not a contributory factor in any of his legal issue.  Nope, they were all booze and Oxy inspired, except for the ones based upon his arrogance.

HotayisaDick
HotayisaDick

Clock ticking for a response from DonkeyHotay, which will certainly contain some derogatory comments in my direction, some other hate-spew about pot. Bring it on. I'm walking away from my computer. So should you.

HotayisaDick
HotayisaDick

I'm really impressed with the dedication to your craft, Donkey. Being a ruthless internet stalker and jerk off has been perfected! Right before our very eyes. 

Everyone: Imagine the time commitment, vitriol and contempt that this person has focused into posting these bullshit whips back at everyone and anyone who has a different opinion than they do! 

I'm amazed. I wanted to say 'get a job' (but obviously THIS is your self-proclaimed job) I wanted to also say some more colorful things in your direction, but reading your posts is tiresome and paints you in an incredibly pathetic light, which is more powerful than anything I can say or do.

Hotay; Git it up, random internet stalker. We don't know you, don't like you and could give a shit less about what you think.

kadargo
kadargo

A month ago today, Hickenlooper signed A64 into law.  Since then I'm not seeing, being reported in the news, all the problems that cannabis legalization would bring.  I do, however, continue to see in the news all the problems still being caused by users of alcohol.  See your local news for more information.
 

jose257
jose257 topcommenter

It makes sense that the Kennedy family, who made their fortune smuggling alcohol, would be against a competiing substance called marijuana.

If I had a choice between alcohol or marijuana, it would be marijuana every time.  Alcohol sucks.


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Mendacious Mason = the Lying Liar behind the Bogus A64

Perhaps Kennedy will ask him about the MASSIVE LIE Tvert and Vicente promoted -- falsely claiming that A64 will prevent 10,000+ arrests for marijuana every year in Colorado.

A64 = a fraud and a sham, promoted by Lying Liars, for idiots and fools too stupid to read, much less comprehend what it proposed.

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident topcommenter

This is all about "you caught us off-guard and we'd do anything to put the genie back into the bottle."

You cannot put the genie back into the bottle!

tutonehcc
tutonehcc

Amendment 64 is falling off the fiscal cannabis cliff, Mason to the rescue!

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

@jose257 Thanks for the post, Jose257. We're going to make it an upcoming Comment of the Day. Appreciate you weighing in.

jose257
jose257 topcommenter

@kadargo Soon you will see a reduction in liver transplants when alcohol users switch to marijuana.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

@jose257 Thanks for the post, Jose. We're going to make it an upcoming Comment of the Day. Appreciate you weighing in.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@jose257  ... so who's forcing you to drink alcohol, eh stoner?

How would marijuana reduce the CURRENT Kennedy family fortune, eh numbnuts?


jose257
jose257 topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay Kennedys smuggled alcohol during Prohibition.  Alcohol is much worse than pot.  The lying liars calling the kettle black is nothing new.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@tutonehcc  ... Lying Liars summoned to tell more Lies.

Mendacious Mason Tvert = ZERO credibility

jose257
jose257 topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay @jose257 Go ahead and sign it then Donkey.  What do you have to lose from people trying to sell marijuana and going bankrupt?

savewillowpark
savewillowpark

@DonkeyHotay Ad Hominem attacks prove your not secure in your opinion...  Why don't we all just agree that marijuana doesn't hurt anyone and adults have voted to use it if they choose to do so?  It makes no sense comparing it to alcohol.  Alcohol is a completely different animal, that is sort of like comparing heroine to cookies.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@jose257 ... the PEOPLE of Colorado via A64 have declared that Marijuana should be Government Regulated LIKE deadly Alcohol ... that Marijuana is so dangerous that NO ONE under 21 years old should be allowed ANY LEGAL ACCESS to it.

That is what YOU voted for, moron.

jose257
jose257 topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay @savewillowpark It is not available to me without committing a felony.  That is about as available as the money sitting in a bank that I could take at gun point.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@savewillowpark "Actually there are those who would prefer marijuana to alcohol if given the opportunity."

And where in the U$A is marijuana not available to anyone smarter than a 5th grader who actually wants to obtain it?


savewillowpark
savewillowpark

@DonkeyHotay @jose257 @kadargo Actually there are those who would prefer marijuana to alcohol if given the opportunity. Further, for someone attempting to quit alcohol without medical intervention who suffers from DT's marijuana can be useful when self weaning. As for your other assertion that I should get off my a** and get a bill going because it is so easy...I already have. I personally made hundreds of calls and knocked hundreds of doors to get 64 passed while working for the Obama campaign. You have no idea how many people registered just to vote on that amendment. @DonkeyHotay @jose257 @kadargo

savewillowpark
savewillowpark

@DonkeyHotay @kadargo See, you almost did it, your question would have been good had you not chosen to use the word stupid. To answer the question anyway it is because this is an issue of personal liberties.

savewillowpark
savewillowpark

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident I don't hate facts but I dislike bullies and am weary of more obstructionist bullying tactics-it's all you have. It's time we have reasoned discussions. Civility is a function of good productive communication which is also imperative in problem solving. I think it's time we focus on being a part of the solution.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Gary_Bowlmen ....behold the lame apologetic of a typical slacker-stoner who voted to put that festering turd A64 into the Colorado Constitution, thereby permanently surrendering total control of marijuana to BigGovernment Regulators and BigGovernment Tax Pigs.



Gary_Bowlmen
Gary_Bowlmen

@DonkeyHotay @Gary_Bowlmen 

2014-2016 
Show us how it's done big boy !
Get off your computer and get a bill on the ballot,
get people to fund your bill, and get your bill passed !

Since you know .... Its so easy ! 

Gary_Bowlmen
Gary_Bowlmen

@DonkeyHotay @Cognitive_Dissident 

FACT= Mason Tvert got shit done ! 
FACT=DonkeyHotay talks shit !
FACT=DonkeyHotay is an internet troll !
FACT=DonkeyHotay is a loser who sits on his computer all day and trolls the westword !
FACT=DonkeyHotay is very good at being a troll !
 

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Cognitive_Dissident

FACT = Mason Tvert is a self-confessed Alcoholic

FACT = Mason Tvert is a grotesquely obese turd

FACT = Mason Tvert is an unmitigated LIAR regarding A64,

What part don't you comprehend?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@kadargo ... why do stupid stoners always want to change the subject to alcohol when the topic of discussion is MARIJUANA?


Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay To the contrary, my dear troll--YOU use the ad hominem attack to AVOID facts. Those facts, in this case, are that alcohol is truly dangerous, as every lush knows, while cannabis, not so much.

kadargo
kadargo

@Cognitive_Dissident  That's my point exactly!  While alcohol continues to cause far more problems to the user and society as a whole,  It continues to be publicized as the party favor of choice.  Complaints like "more dispensaries than Starbucks" come as a threat to public safety while the good news is that breweries are growing in size to meet the demand and reported by the news media in a positive tone as if that is a good thing. 

Cognitive_Dissident
Cognitive_Dissident topcommenter

@savewillowpark The comparison against alcohol was Mason Tvert's idea--to point out that alcohol, while legal, is a truly dangerous substance, while cannabis, illegal, is not.

bongsucker
bongsucker

@jose257 @DonkeyHotay

So amendment 64 is a stupid law?

That's what Donkey and others have been saying.

jose257
jose257 topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay @jose257 You have to start somewhere Donkey.   Sometimes a stupid law is needed to end a stupider law.

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