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Marijuana advocates holding informational march Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018.(Photo: .)

Editor’s Note: Organizers said participants will meet on public property at the intersection of South 14th and Barrow streets at noon, outside of H-E-B Grocery. H-E-B management on Friday said it is not affiliated with the rally and had not been asked by organizers to use H-E-B property.

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The green revolution is hoping Abilene is among Texas cities interested in legalizing marijuana.

An informational rally is scheduled from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday at Abilene’s H-E-B Grocery, 1345 Barrow St.

A buzz has been generating on the event’s Facebook event page, titled “Cannabis Open Carry Walk XV (Abilene),” with more than 600 respondents indicating either attendance or interest as of Thursday afternoon.

The rally is not to use marijuana, it’s in support of legalizing it. Therefore, organizers said in the event description, participants will not be doing anything illegal.

“This is a walk to educate the public about the lack of cannabis freedom we have here in Texas and how to get active to change that,” organizers said in the event page. “We want recreational use and medical use come 2019, no questions (asked). On walks, we pass out information to get people active in the fight to free the weed come 2019. We have literature, signs and flags to show our love and support for this amazing plant. Our goal is to be so consistent and everywhere, so much that there is no ignoring this movement. We

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McALESTER — On her way to Tulsa to speak in favor of legalizing medical marijuana, an activist from Colorado ended up making a detour instead — to the county jail.

Regina Nelson, 54, was arrested Sunday during a traffic stop after an Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper found baggies and containers of “a green leafy substance” in her rented SUV.

“Nelson claims she is a writer who travels the country and advocates for the legalization of marijuana,” the trooper wrote in a court affidavit. “Nelson said she is en route to Tulsa to speak on the issue. … Nelson says she freely shares marijuana with whomever is in need and stated she has a valid medical card from Colorado.”

Nelson and her two passengers are now charged with a felony that is punishable by up to life in prison and a $20,000 fine.

Prosecutors on Tuesday charged her, a business partner and her son in Pittsburg County District Court. They face a felony count of unlawful possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and a misdemeanor count of unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. They have pleaded not guilty.

The arrest has upset cannabis supporters, who already are raising money for their legal fees and calling Oklahoma an uptight state. It also comes just months before the vote on the state question on medical marijuana.

Passage of State Question 788 would allow Oklahomans with a state-issued medical license to possess marijuana legally. The vote is June 26.

Nelson is complaining the

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It’s not about a type of person or vehicle or a time of day, they say. It’s about watching a person’s body language. Therese Apel/ The Clarion-Ledger

In this file photo, a gavel rests on a table in a court room.(Photo: Dario Lopez-MIlls, AP)

Tharon Jamell Taylor, 27, of Pascagoula pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine.

On August 20, an informant made a controlled delivery to Taylor of 1,964 grams of 100 percent pure methamphetamine. The informant told the FBI that he had previously delivered Taylor drugs from Texas.

Prior to the delivery, a recorded phone call was placed by the informant to Taylor, and during the call, Taylor requested that they meet at his apartment in Ocean Springs.

Taylor met the informant in the apartment’s parking lot, and agents quickly arrested him when he reached for the bag in which the methamphetamine was located. Upon arresting Taylor, law enforcement searched his apartment and found money, a scale, methamphetamine, and a stolen handgun.

Taylor will be sentenced on June 26 and faces a maximum penalty of life in prison and a $10 million fine.

Possession with intent to distribute

Tambra Brown, 30, of Grenada, pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine and 50 grams or more of actual methamphetamine.

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Congress has not approved any marijuana-related amendments since 2013, when the medical marijuana protections known as the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment was first pushed through. In fact, federal lawmakers have not given any consideration to additional riders protecting the cannabis industry for the past few years.

Some marijuana reform advocates believe Representative Pete Sessions of Texas, who serves as the chairman of the House Rules Committee, is to blame for this shortcoming. Not only does he decide what pieces of legislation reach the floor of the lower chamber, he also hates marijuana.

Earlier this week, Sessions told those in an attendance at the US Department of Health and Human Services Region VI Opioid Summit that legal marijuana is as much to blame for addiction in America than any other substance. Perhaps even more, since it is legal in many states.

“If addiction is the problem and we have marketers of addiction that include marijuana — because all you have to do is go to any of the stores in Colorado and they can give you high to low to medium to chocolate — we ought to call for it what it is,” he said. “If it were nicotine, it would have been outlawed; well, it would have been handled differently. But this is a political issue.”

Congressman Sessions’ comments are similar to those expressed by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who said recently that the opioid crisis “Is starting with marijuana and other drugs, too.” It seems the faces of the federal government

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The full U.S. House of Representatives hasn’t voted on any marijuana amendments since 2016, and it’s largely because of one man.

In his capacity as chairman of the House Rules Committee, Congressman Pete Sessions (R-TX) has enormous power over which measures make it to the floor for consideration by his colleagues.

Despite continued efforts from a large group of bipartisan representatives, Sessions’s panel has consistently blocked all cannabis proposals from advancing over the course of nearly two years.

In wide-ranging comments at a federal event on Tuesday, Sessions revealed the extent to which he disapproves of marijuana use and misunderstands scientific research about its effects.

“If addiction is the problem and we have marketers of addiction that include marijuana — because all you have to do is go to any of the stores in Colorado and they can give you high to low to medium to chocolate — we ought to call for it what it is,” he said, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “If it were nicotine, it would have been outlawed; well, it would have been handled differently. But this is a political issue.”

Saying he thinks there are “better alternatives [than marijuana to treat medical conditions],” Sessions’s view is that “we don’t have to go to that.”

And implying that marijuana use causes young people to do other drugs as well, he asked, “Where do they start? If it’s marijuana, we ought to stand up and be brave in the medical community to say this political

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It’s already been an eventful 2018 for pot in Texas.

Medical marijuana oil dispensaries and deliveries are up and running in the state.

A 12-year-old girl whose family fled North Texas for greater access to medical marijuana in Colorado, and her co-complainants, were heard by a Manhattan judge in their suit against the federal government to change marijuana laws throughout the U.S.

But the folks running the 2018 DFW Marijuana March aren’t complacent.

The executive director of the DFW chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, Shaun McAlister, announced the date, time and location of this year’s march Friday. It will start at Burnett Park in downtown Fort Worth for the third consecutive year and is scheduled for Saturday, May 12, from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.

DFW Marijuana March Announcement

The DFW Marijuana March of 2018 is officially confirmed for Saturday May 12 at Burnett Park in Fort Worth! Mark your calendars! Herb’s the word. #dfwmjmarch

Posted by Shaun McAlister on Friday, February 16, 2018

“DFW NORML board members met with Fort Worth special events, Fort Worth Police Department, Tarrant County Sheriff’s Office, Fort Worth Fire and like always, they expressed interest in working with us,” McAlister said during a Facebook Live video. “I can tell they want to work with us on this to ensure safety, and they want to protect our first amendment rights.”

The group pushed its march back one week from last year, when it conflicted

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In the summer of 2017 Trysten Pearson, 16 years-old, underwent a surgical procedure at Houston’s Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital that entailed placing intracranial electrodes in his brain to localize his seizure focus area. Trysten and his mother, Shena Pearson, want to try the low-THC cannabis treatment that is now legal in Texas.

Trysten Pearson, 16, was diagnosed with epilepsy in 2013. Since then, he has gone through two surgical procedures, one of which entailed an implant on his chest to shorten the seizures, and another one that involved placing intracranial electrodes in his brain. But after all these procedures and several medications, his seizures are still uncontrolled and he is currently at risk of what is known as Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy (SUDEP).

Trysten’s mother, Shena Pearson,  is among the parents with epileptic children in the greater Houston area that are excited about the possibilities of the cannabis-based treatment that started being sold in Texas in February. But along with hope, some concerns arise as well.

The Texas Legislature legalized the treatment after passing the Texas Compassionate Use Act in 2015. The law legalized oils containing low levels of tetrahydrocannabinol –the psychoactive element in cannabis, known as THC– and high levels of CBD or cannabidiol, a non-euphoric component of marijuana known to treat epilepsy and other chronic medical conditions.

Patients ingest the oil which, according to some medical research, can help  reduce or shorten their seizures. The state will regulate and distribute the oils to patients whose symptoms have not responded to federally approved medication.

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A veteran, a former NFL player, and two sick kids walk into a New York courtroom. And the outcome could impact marijuana laws nationwide.

A U.S District judge in Manhattan began hearing oral arguments Wednesday in a federal lawsuit aimed at overturning the government’s prohibition on marijuana. The plaintiffs say the federal ban is unconstitutional, and two of the people making that argument are native Texans. Marvin Washington is a former NFL player from Dallas and Alexis Bortell is an 11-year-old with intractable epilepsy originally from Tyler.

Douglas Berman, a professor of criminal law at the Ohio State University who blogs about marijuana policy, says the case has gathered a lot of attention because the defendants use marijuana in “sympathetic ways” including relief from PTSD and severe medical conditions.

Berman says that while federal authorities are unlikely to prosecute individual medical marijuana users, the substance’s Schedule 1 drug status makes things difficult for state systems where marijuana is legal for medical use. It’s also difficult for health experts to learn more about marijuana’s medical effects and uses.

“Big pharmaceutical companies and others feel restrained, and are unwilling to…go through the regulations that are required to even start studying how to develop more medicines using the compounds in marijuana,” Berman says.

The federal government argues that the way to change marijuana’s status is not through a suit, but either through legislation or by changing Drug Enforcement Agency policy.

Berman says the plaintiffs’ case is winnable because, despite restrictions, research shows

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The first deliveries have been made; the first dispensary has opened.

Now the question is how much the business of cannabis oil — a non-psychoactive form of medical marijuana — may grow here in Texas.

The low-THC oil is currently available only to Texans with intractable epilepsy if federally approved medication has not helped.

But it could potentially be available to other Texans, if research proves that it helps and if state lawmakers agree.

State Rep. Stephanie Klick, R-Fort Worth, shepherded a law that created the Texas Compassionate Use Program through the Legislature in 2015.

Now she now is looking into whether Texas might house a research initiative to determine whom else this cannabis oil might help.

“We need to take a scientific approach to this,” said Klick, a former nurse. “Data helps inform our decisions about expansion, if there are any.

“There could be other conditions this could help.”

She mentioned multiple sclerosis as an example, depending on what research shows.

Whether lawmakers will consider an expansion won’t be known for a while, though, since they don’t head back to Austin for their next regular session until Jan. 8.

The cannabis oil available for Texas patients contains the parts of a marijuana plant that lets a patient get the medical benefits without the buzz. It does not include tetrahydrocannabinol, the psychoactive substance that produces a high.

Other marijuana use — for medical or recreational use — remains illegal in Texas and more than a dozen other states. But it

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A Wichita County deputy headed off more than 500 pounds worth of hydroponically grown marijuana that was likely headed toward Dallas-Fort Worth — at least to stop for gas.

Deputy A. Price stopped Enrique Gutierrez, 27, and Ernan Gutierrez, 20, driving southbound in the 300 block of Central Freeway in Wichita Falls about 8 a.m. Sunday. She and fellow officers found almost 518 pounds of marijuana, with a street value of $3.3 million, in their vehicle.

During interrogation, the men said they were coming from California and taking the drugs to Houston, deputy Melvin Joyner said. That means they’d likely have come through the DFW area.

The men have been booked into the Wichita County Detention Center on second-degree felony charges of possession of more than 50 pounds and under 2,000 pounds of marijuana. No bail has been set.

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