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Author Topic: Keep Salvia Legal Campaign (& Salvia's legal status)  (Read 15626 times)
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divinorum
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« Reply #20 on: April 15, 2008, 10:56:19 pm »

Well after fifteen minutes of searching my Texas Legislature website and finding all bills concerning Salvia D. I have found out that almost all of the bills drafted (save three) would just prohibit sales under the age of 18. These have some support behind them, but have not been passed. The other ones would schedule it to either a level two or three, but these have less support. You were right, they say something about how it would not hurt fiscally, which it would but they just want to pass their bill. Anyway, these probably wont pass, and are currently in limbo. The others, with some letters of support from us, will pass. Take them away from kids, then there is no reason for it to stay illegal. Anyway, besides this I wrote most of my paper with stats and such (from reliable sources) that shows that even though they say it will cost little money (lies), it will cost some. Although this is just one small part of a huge argument that we have. We can also talk about how its chemical structure, and receptor interactions are completely different than that of LSD (or almost all other hallucinogens), its legitamacy as a house plant, level of danger, etc. Remember, if we organize this in a logical and intelligent manner, then we have a stronger argument then they do. I like all the suggestions made on here, and as soon as I hear complaints about Salvia here in Texas I will be sure to voice a reasonable opinion wherever the complaint may arise. 
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DrYRHead
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« Reply #21 on: April 16, 2008, 01:23:00 am »

I'd rather see them just card people. If it were made totally illegal, it would then be left up to the street level drug dealers to sell, and those people DO NOT CARD kids. Thus, it the political types, cops and the media are worried because "kids are doing it", making it illegal will insure that the kids can get it even easier.
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mconlonx
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« Reply #22 on: April 16, 2008, 07:24:20 am »

I'd rather see them just card people. If it were made totally illegal, it would then be left up to the street level drug dealers to sell, and those people DO NOT CARD kids. Thus, it the political types, cops and the media are worried because "kids are doing it", making it illegal will insure that the kids can get it even easier.

Awesome argument for regulation instead of prohibition. Check stats in your own state, but chances are that you can lean on cigarette statistics to back this up.
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mconlonx
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« Reply #23 on: April 17, 2008, 09:31:24 am »

Keeping Salvia Legal

Part 0:
Introduction--why YOU should oppose salvia ban bills

"A bill has been introduced in my state, I guess it's all over."
"What possible difference can I make now that a ban bill has been introduced? You know They're just going to ban it."
"I'm into entheogens, but not salvia particularly--my sacrament of choice is still legal/illegal, why should I care?"
"I hear a Federal ban is in the works right now with the DEA studying Salvia with an eye toward scheduling it--the States don't really matter."

If you're reading this here, you already have a great reason to not want Salvia prohibition to take effect, either in your State or Nationally. And yet bans have passed in many states and there's rumors of renewed Federal interest. This leads many to believe that the fight to keep salvia legal is as hopeless as other efforts have been in the past. But it's simply not so--Salvia simply cannot be significantly compared to any of the traditionally scheduled hallucinogens in either effect or chemical makeup, and socially, aside from media hype, there is no demonstrable problem with salvia. In fact, whenever bans are opposed, they fail. Think about that for a moment. More ban bills have failed than have passed; Salvia is still legal in more states than it's been banned. The history of Salvia ban bills is squarely on the side of those who wish to keep it available--every time a ban bill has come up and there has been opposition at committee public hearings, ban bills have failed. Every. Time.

And yet, ban bills keep passing; people keep NOT attending committee public hearings to simply speak out against bans and take the time to refute the unfounded media hype being foisted off on otherwise ignorant committee members. If no one tells them different, if no one opposes a ban, why should they think it's any less pernicious than the pro-ban side says it is, why should they think that anyone opposes a ban when no one shows up to do so?

The arguments are all on our side. There is no demonstrable salvia problem out there--no police-reported salvia-related crime wave, no superintendents reporting this new scourge in the schools, no substance abuse treatment center admissions, no emergency room admissions, nothing out there except handfulls of poison control center calls which are barely a blip on their radar. It's not a party or social drug. It's not particularly fun. It has a history of religious use and is currently being scientifically researched for possible analgesic, anti-depressive, or even anti-addictive properties. It doesn't meet scheduling guidelines, and the DEA has yet to schedule it. Where's the problem???

On the other side, their arguments boil down to three things: Hallucinogens are bad, kids on YouTube, and "Legal LSD/Marijuana!" marketing claims. These are easily dismissed--if you are banning Salvia because it is a drug and it is therefore bad, what about real problems like teen access to parents' pharmaceuticals, dextromethorphan abuse of OTC cough medicines, Benadryl, nutmeg, aerosol whipped cream, and any number of other plants and products out there currently being abused at measurable rates--why does Salvia receive special treatment when these other, more demonstrable problems are left alone? YouTube vids--are you kidding me??? Unsubstantiated internet video being provided as some kind of evidence? And of course the marketing claims of unscrupulous sellers looking to move product--again, doesn't pass the straight face test at all. When called on such tactics in public, the pro-ban argument looks extremely weak, and committees realize they are being played for fools by their own officials. No one likes that...

There are all kinds of examples out there of bills which have quietly died in committee, maybe because committee members who actually do research find out that bans are bogus. There are also examples out there of people who fought bans and won. In OR in 2007, two people showed up at committee public hearing to oppose a ban and the bill died in committee. In CA in 2007, people opposed a ban at public hearing and the bill was amended from complete prohibition to regulation of sales to 18+. In ME in 2007, two people spoke out against a ban at public hearing and the bill was amended to regulation of sales to 18+, and signed into law that summer. The people who spoke out in ME and OR were nobodies--not doctors, scientists, sociologists, drug specialists or anything like that, just normal, everday people, citizens sticking up for their rights. And winning.

The quotes at the top of the page indicate some of the resistance I've come across. The trouble is that thoughts like this are self-defeating--and if you don't oppose something and it passes, it only reinforces that thought. I don't understand this at all--the recent history of salvia legislation proves that when bans are opposed, they are defeated. Every single time.

And the state bans most definitely matter. Look at the history of prohibition in the States. Every single time something has been banned, it has started with local and state bans. Alcohol at the turn of the last century, cannabis in the early 1900s, LSD in the 60s, MDMA in the 90s--first state bans, then Federal bans as a response to perceived interest and popularity. They guage acceptance of prohibition on the state level first... which is exactly what's happening with Salvia.

Again, if you're reading this here, you probably have good reason to be concerned about Salvia legality in your state. But the argument to keep Salvia legal is bigger than that, even--it is currently the very frontline in the fight for entheogenic freedom. And it's good that it is, because it is so easy to defend and with current communication, easy to spread word before it's too late. Salvia is an oddball because it doesn't have all the easily recognizable, supposedly dangerous effects of currently scheduled hallucinogens. Also, the vehemency with which ban supporters attack it, misrepresenting it to committees, buying into the artificial medial hype surrounding it when put on the spot by lazy or sensationalistic reporters. It makes it easy to defeat during the committee public hearing stage. And if regulation is implemented, it could provide a precedent and tangible example of regulation of a psychoactive that works--it's not a problem before regulation, it won't be after, so use that as ammo showing that regulation works. Turn their own arguments, reasoning, and figures against them.

Couple of last thoughts on why you should fight bans: no one else will do it for you, nothing bad is going to happen if you oppose them in public. No one will  fight it for you. MAPS, CCLE, DPA, LEAP, Daniel Siebert--none of these people are going to magically show up to defend salvia in your state. Hell, they probably won't even respond to you if you approach them about defending salvia in your state. Vendors won't show up, so don't count on them, either. It's up to YOU in your state to defend your current right of unrestricted access to salvia. The correct time and place to do this is the committee public hearing--this is the only thing proven over and over again to work. Sign petitions, send emails and letters, call your rep, support drug decrim orgs, but for the heaven's sake, above anything else you do, be sure to show up and oppose a ban at public hearing. Without any prep at all, you will know 99% more than anyone else in the room about salvia, and with about as much work as you might put into a high school term paper, you will be a freakin' expert.

Of course standing up for something like this is scary. Won't people think I'm a "druggie?" Nope. Currently access to salvia is a right. They are trying to take it away. It unfortunately falls withing the purview of currently socially unacceptable use, but if you don't care what people think about you, there's nothing anyone can legally do about you merely exercising your democratic right to oppose legislation. But some people have certain situation where even the possibility of that minimal exposure is not a rist they're willing to take. Understandable, certainly, but keep in mind that if you think you can't speak out against onerous legislation, they've already won a lot more than just this battel...

Salvia ban bills can be defeated. Current history proves this over and over again, and yet the media will use language designed to promote the opposite: "Already, 6 states have passed salvia ban bills, with more in the works" instead of "Although some states have passed ban bills, most haven't and more bills are defeated than have ever passed." Why buy into that when you know different? Defeating a ban bill takes a day off from work or school, travel to your state capital for a day, and about as much research as a high school term paper. What's salvia and your entheogenic freedoms worth to you?

Salvia bans fail more than they pass.

Salvia bans fail every time there is even a bit of opposition at public hearing.

Salvia bans pass ever time there is no opposition at public hearing.

No one will stand up at the public hearing in your state unless you do.


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« Reply #24 on: April 17, 2008, 01:19:42 pm »

I took these steps in CA and they worked!

Here is the Letter I Mailed:
http://members.cox.net/sageseeds/ab259o.html

And shortly after that the text of the proposed law was changed!

Here is one more economic reason to persuade lawmakers in favor of 'regulation to minors' VS. 'making everyone that touches it a felon' ...


For every person incarcerated for growing plants: that state loses a taxpayer and must spend more tax Funds to house and feed them in punishment. You reduce the available income to the government while requiring an increase of funds expenditures at the same time: a double hit to the states economy every time an innocent gardener is persecuted for growing harmless plants in this latest "Witch Hunt" ...

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DrYRHead
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« Reply #25 on: April 20, 2008, 10:16:59 pm »

Ya, I think that it would be better for the law to just require vendors to card people to make sure they are over 18 y/o and have people pay sales tax on it. Making it a felony would just cost them taxes instead.
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Madmax
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« Reply #26 on: April 29, 2008, 06:57:31 am »

Rest assured that the forces of nannyism will surely criminalize salvia eventually, but much like opium poppies your average Barney Fife cop wouldn't recognize a salvia plant if it bit him on his his highly polished behind. You can't fight stupidity, but you can apparently legislate it. Even if every state succumbs to the knee jerk reaction of criminalizing salvia just because others are doing so those who grow them will remain undetected unless caught with some finished product. Unless or until the use of salvia expands significantly the companies who produce drug testing kits won't have enough demand for detection devices to make it worth the bother from their own point of view, and I don't personally know anyone who wants to fly with the gods on a daily basis.
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DrYRHead
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« Reply #27 on: April 30, 2008, 02:00:08 am »

I do not see Salvinorin A as ever becoming part of the routine drug screen panels. First of all, the dose is so small it would be too hard to look for, and second the us of SD is just not wide spread enough to warrant such. The same is true of LSD, for it is also too small in dosage to be readily found in urine or blood.
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mconlonx
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« Reply #28 on: April 30, 2008, 10:30:49 am »

"Rest assured that the forces of nannyism will surely criminalize salvia eventually"

Respctfully, Madmax: Fuck off.

The forces of nannyism can try to criminalize salvia, but they fail whenever people speak out against such actions. People are less inclined to speak out against criminalization with people like you saying things like this. I appreciate where you're coming from and wouldn't try to dissuade people from stocking up and getting live plants while they can, but this is a defeatist attitude that simply is not completely true. While the forces of nannyism will continue to attempt to criminalize salvia, they are aided in their efforts by salvia enthusiasts who do not speak out against bans... and those who discourage others from doing so.

Rest assured that bans fail whenever there is public opposition. It is only the apathy and ignorance of salvia enthusiasts that allow bans to sail through state legislatures.
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Paradoxic
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« Reply #29 on: April 30, 2008, 06:30:46 pm »

"Fuck off" is tough to say respectfully, lol. But no, I'm all with you mconlonx. The truth is that it isn't very difficult to oppose a ban successfully, and it has been done. Salvia has an exceptionally strong case for staying legal or at least mostly legal--all it takes is a little civic engagement.
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mconlonx
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« Reply #30 on: May 06, 2008, 10:30:21 pm »

Part 3
Uh-Oh, a ban bill's been introduced in my state--what can I do now???

So there was news stories, and you posted to internet forums, and everyone chimed in:

"Uh-oh, you better take it underground..."
"It was inevitable, get your cuttings and stock up while you can."

And then what?

In some cases nothing. You didn't hear about it, you don't occasionally (is twice a month asking too much?!?) search "[your state] salvia" on the search engine of your choice.

You don't realize that some comittee you've never heard of at the state capital has done actual research and figured out on their own that salvia is very much not a cut and dry case.

-or-

You don't realize that a ban has passed in your state and order up some salvia and get arrested on felony charges. Or find out too late that a ban has passed critical opposition points, when you vowed you'd fight it if it ever happened on your watch.

Here's how it works:

A ban bill is introduced.

Either someone in the media will pick up the story from AP or other media feeds on a slow news day, or someone with some kind of special interest will find a legislative sponsor to back their ban bill. In either case, some poor tool of a legislator will be tricked into sponsoring a ban bill.

On the media end, there's Mama Chidester, pushing her own view of reality. Check the wikipedia salvia divinorum entry and especially the history for a full review of the Brett Chidester suicide. No idea what efforts she is making directly, but she is referenced in most stories and available any time anti salvia reporting pops up. But for the most part, media reports appear to be more lazy reporting than anything else. Regurgitation of sensatioalist aspects with a local slant is the way these things go. Find a local source, reference YouTube videos, corner a local politicial, and Bob's your uncle. Even the more reasonable reporting is unbelievably prohibitionist. And once they corner a politician, look out.

The other way ban bills get introduced is by constituent complaint. In Maine, the constituent who garnered the attention of her local Representative happened to be the head of the Maine Office of Substance Abuse. In California, the constituent was a doctor who owns a treatment center. Either hardly pass any kind of straigt face test when you consider the appearance of conflict of interest...

But nonetheless, a ban bill has been introduced. Here's what you should do, and in what order:

Actually before legislation is introduced, but sure to precede a ban bill, an unbalanced media piece hits:

a) If there's a comment section for online content, comment!
b)Write the editor or producer of the piece with what you see wrong in the reporting. Can't hurt.
c) If they corner some legislator, find out their contact info and let them know that Salvia is not the cut and dry case they think it is, and that it will be vigorously opposed. Suggest regulation, sales 18+ like cigarettes, instead. Contact your own State Representative and Senator stating your opposition and copy them in on any and all correspondence to State legislators.
d) Spread word of this on internet forums, blogs, etc.

Aside:
Legislative procedure can vary from state to state, but in general follow this path. Or rather, this is the path followed in Maine, and you should definitely check out procedure in your own state so you don't get surprised with salvia legislation. They count on your igornance...
0) Bill is never introduced, or is stalled at any level, or is amended to regulation at any step of the way.
1) Bill gets a sponsor.
2) Bill is accepted by House or Senate for consideration and assigned to committee.
3) Committee considers bill. In some states, this is when a public hearing is announced and held--and when opposition is most effective.
4) Bill is forwarded back to House or Senate for vote, with amendments and preference of committee noted.
5) Bill is submitted to the other chamber for consideration, committee meeting, and vote.
6) Bill is signed by governor
7) Salvia is banned in your state.

0) Bills fail more than they pass. It happens over and over again, at any stage of the fight. Whether dropped in committee, never taken up in the first place, or amended to regulation, bans fail every time there is opposition to them.

1) Bill gets a sponsor. Either a constituent makes a suggestion or a legislator comes up with a smart idea. They sponsor legislation and write up a draft of it. This usually happens at any time, but most effective is late fall. Despite letting the sponsoring legislator know that their bill is doomed or that they should consider regulation like ME or CA, they move ahead and convince the legislature to consider a ban bill based on misrepresentations and lies about salvia. No problem.

2) Bill is introduced. Either to the Senate or House, the bill joins a whole slew of others for considerattion. You would not believe some of the things that are proposed. Seriously--if everyone looked into it, legislators would be run out on a rail and replaced with reasonable people. These are vetted and a vote is taken on what should be forwarded. Action items:
a) You could plausibly spam the entire branch with an anti-ban arguments before this to waylay a bill at this point.
b) Write the sponsor and your own rep/sen again opposing it, with references.

3) Committee considers bill. OK, here's your best bet. A limited group of people looking into the matter supposedly in depth so as to make the best recommendation they can regarding the legislation, to the branch they report to. They are also the people who can suggest amendments to the legislation. These are the people you need to make your most cohesive, referenced, concise, and nuanced arguments to. These are the legislators you need to focus the most of your resources on. These are the people lobbyists try to influence, but oddly, flesh and blood constituents can count for more than special intrest representatives on this level. Write these people. Focus on the concrete--salvia is not a demonstrable problem, prosecuting felons costs an already overwhelmed system even more--rather than the abstract--prohibition doesn't work, plants should not be outlawed. Destoy their arguments--unsubstantiated internet vids and the claims of unscrupulous vendors should not be cause to ban a harmless substance. Demand figures--Emergency room admittances, instances of salvia related crime, superintendent concerns, treatment center admissions. Ask where salvia relates at state level poison centers. The figures are all on our side and calling them on it embarasses ban supporters and makes committees feel like they are being used... no one likes that...

Show up at public hearing. There is nothing more effective you can do to defend saliva than this. It is proven to work over and over again. For real. Any time there is opposition to a ban, any time committees are presented with the truth about salvia rather than the warped view presented by ban supporters, bans fail. Any time no one speaks out against bans with mere reason, bans pass. Simple as that. In 2007, a ban was dropped in OR after two people spoke out against a ban. In 2007, a ban was amended to regulation of sales to 18+ after two people spoke out against a ban. In 2007, a ban was amended  to regulation in CA after people spoke out against a ban at public hearing.

Prepare and rehearse what you're going to say, but never forget that you're just talking to people who don't know a thing about salvia, other than what they've been misled about... and that the other side can't refute your truths. Point out the weaknesses of their arguments and the strength of yours. Stay on point, and again, don't tangent off into why you think all drugs should be legal. That's not helpful...

Bring a written transcript of what you say, and enough copies to distribute to each member of the committee (send it to them before hand, email and/or snail mail, cc your rep on all communications...).

Take notes and record your experience to special interest boards, forums, blogs, etc.

4) Really, committee was your best bet because now it goes to the full branch for vote. These people have hundreds of bills to consider. If they see one where the committee is unanimous (i.e. no one opposed a salvia bill at committee level) they will rubber stamp it. Same with an amended bill forwarded with the even a mixed vote. The point being that you can write every single individual member of that branch of the legislature, but they will still tend to vote along with the committee's recommendation rather than listen to someone who didn't bother or wasn't effective enough to effect something different at the committee level. If a ban gets to this level, hate to say it, but you might be screwed.

Branch passes commitee recommended bill for consideration of next branch.

5) Bill passes to next branch. Either a Senate bill hits the House or vice versa. Follows the same process as above. Some states appear to not do committee consideration at this point, some do. On something like this, if it make it to vote, it will likely pass with the same margin it did in the other house. Write the whole branch, write especially the committee members, show up for a public hearing if held.

Vote is held, bill passes.

6) Governor signs it. Write the Gov, cc your Rep and Sen, but if it gets this far, count on it passing.

7) Note effective date of enforcement. Consider moving to another state. Or country.

Can't stress it enough. The sooner you know about pending legislation, the sooner you can respond. The sooner you respond, the more effective your opposition will be. Opposing salvia bans take little time and resources--it is its own best proponent and the sheer facts are usually enough to get committees to reconsider bans.  But when no one gives committees the facts, bans pass. Simple as that.



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Pacman21
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« Reply #31 on: May 11, 2008, 07:49:12 am »

Ok.. So what if a ban arises. What exactly would you tell the legislators?? Only bad news is on tv.. They rarely ever have news that is good news, for example Iraq war (usually only talk about negatives). I think to stop salvia from being made illegal, their has to be some positive news put out into the public.. If a state ban arises, you need to think of the positives of salvia.. So i think we should think of some positives that salvia possess.
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mconlonx
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« Reply #32 on: May 12, 2008, 09:24:00 am »

You would tell legislators what we already know: Salvia is not a problem--no addiction, no deaths, no emergency room admissions, no salvia related crime. Since it's not a problem, why a ban? There's other, bigger problems out there, it will cost more law enforcement and judicial money. Holds promise in the pharmaceutical industry. Etc. Most of them don't have even the faintest clue about salvia except what's been told to them by ban proponents, so even a rudimentary run down of actual facts on savlia is usually eye-oepening news about it to committee members--don't count on them doing any independent research on their own.
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Paradoxic
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« Reply #33 on: May 12, 2008, 09:04:56 pm »

I made a major update to this article. Instead of providing links to contact federal representatives from each state I added links to the state legislatures. The links go directly to the lists of all the Senators and Representatives  This is more useful because most of the Salvia bills at this point are at the state level.

I hope some of you guys use this resource.
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TheDude
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« Reply #34 on: June 03, 2008, 10:52:23 am »

Hi ,


Anyone has any info on legal status of Salvia in India ?

Has this website shipped to India anytime - any news from the buyer on what transpired ?

I live in an apartment I own - not rented - so don't want to cause trouble through experiments like importing this and finding Police SWAT team at my door - I can't uproot and buy another apartment you know Sad

Somebody Advice / Help !!!  Cry
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Paradoxic
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« Reply #35 on: June 09, 2008, 01:57:08 pm »

I have not heard of anything about Salvia in India. You can probably assume it is legal, but you may want to look into it more.

At this point Salvia Source will not ship internationally due to customs issues. But we are trying to figure out ways to do it, I saved all the emails of people who wanted to order out of US and if we are ever able to I will contact everyone.
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JDogHerman
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« Reply #36 on: July 23, 2008, 01:59:44 pm »

OK... Issue 215 passed unanimously (95-0) in Ohio. It now goes to Senate how can I find out what the number is and how I can try to stop this?

I just found out about this Issue today but it passed on April 16 2008 *(I was planning a wedding)

Does anyone have sample letters that I could send to my Senator?

Someone help me stop this derailed train.
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k2ybugger
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« Reply #37 on: July 23, 2008, 03:00:11 pm »

yea i just noticed this today also and i am getting really worried, i want to help stop this, and hopefully have a law like california has, with 18 and above.
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Yossaria
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« Reply #38 on: February 22, 2009, 02:34:01 pm »

I know there's probably a need for it, but would a campaign/group fighting to revise salvia laws that have already been passed be an option?  I'm just seeing all these bills passing, and as much fight as there is against them when they arise, should they pass, I'm wondering what we could do about it.  I'm a little fuzzy on my knowledge of this, but perhaps we could try to start state-by-state lobbying for revisions?   Possibly a new section devoted to this?

Maybe there's something up already, but the number of bills already passed is really bothering me...
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Paradoxic
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« Reply #39 on: February 22, 2009, 03:24:11 pm »

Yeah, thats a lot tougher to do and I don't actually know that that have even been successful with any substance laws. The only way to do it is to create an initiative and get enough signatures to get it on the ballot. Then people in the state have to pass it into law. The only other way is to have a representative create legislation and get it bassed to overrule the current law, which is also very difficult to do as those same representatives were the ones who voted to ban Salvia.

Right now I think its a much better strategy to focus on the states that are seeking to ban it.
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