A private club for licensed patients and caregivers in the State of Michigan.
Welcome to C.A.
People v McQueen - MI Supreme Court Medical Marijuana Oral Arguments - October 11, 2012 Click here to watch video
In People v McQueen, the court will decide whether Michigan’s Medical Marijuana Act (MMMA) allows registered patients and caregivers to transfer and/or sell medical marijuana to patients they are not linked to through Michigan’s registry program. Isabella County’s Prosecuting Attorney has argued that McQueen’s dispensary (Compassionate Apothecary) was a public nuisance and violated the Public Health Code. A circuit judge disagreed with the prosecutor's argument and refused to enter an injunction. The prosecutor appealed and oral arguments were heard by Michigan’s Court of Appeals (COA) on June 7, 2011. On August 23, 2011, the COA issued an opinion which overturned the circuit court’s decision. McQueen’s attorneys appealed that COA decision and assert that “patient-to-patient transfers of marijuana are protected by the MMA and that attaching a price to those transfers does not violate the Public Health Code.”
There are so many people out there both inside and outside the MJ Community that deserve sincere thanks for what they have accomplished, and how they have helped. Lawyers, Doctors, Patients, City officials, concerned citizens, and Caregivers have all made efforts to incorporate a new way of thinking about MJ in Michigan. And although the legalists and legislators are now hammering out the details of incorporating the 2008 Act into practice, if the underlying intention was to “think differently about MJ” as a State and society, it seems we have accomplished that.
But in a strange way both nobody, and everybody, is out there to give them the thanks they deserve for helping us. Awards and recognition do exist, but there is no generally accepted authority to give an “Oscars of Michigan MJ” yet. Although there’s no shortage of people who would (and do) lay claim to that inside their own “clique”. And therein lay the problem. But the real scoop is that there are many things we, as a unified community, could accomplish if we were willing to insist on the best of representation and organization as opposed to (solely) the one nearest our “clique”.
I see a lot of Organizations out there, and Associations, maybe even a PAC or two. A few of them seem to have some effective sporadic attempts at various degrees of lobbying and/or advocating. But I have yet to see anything that actually benefits its own members in a practical way.
This is not criticism, it’s a suggestion - For instance:
Why isn’t there a group of patients and caregivers who pool their resources to have a private investigator retained to immediately investigate any MJ theft or crime committed against one of its members? To supply the local prosecutor with the best evidence available, and actually prosecute these folks who often commit the crime thinking it will go unreported? And sadly, because no organization like this exists yet, it most often does go unreported. We are in year 4 people, what’s up with that?
One could even direct a group of people to try and find any lost items through their vast network of members working together. Paying for genetic tests proving stolen meds came from a particular source. Perhaps retaining representation for a groundbreaking case in recovering lost meds or compensation for same? Really, there is no limit to what a group of people who truly share the same interest can accomplish with direction.
Certainly we could end all harassment with one well timed class action suit, and a sharp lawyer with a proven track record behind it.
Why not have a Board of Review, so that a member who is victimized may have access to loans of… genetics, gear, perhaps even a loan to re-start “farming”.
The truth is our community will not see practical results like this without unity.
But without any practical consensus, there can be no unity.
Negotiated consensus, as we all know, is difficult and fleeting. But what of natural consensus? Why not find a real consensus where one already exists in nature?
It stands to reason that both Patients and Caregivers are “Farmers”. Does it not?
Clearly both grow and care for medicinal herbs, and the responsible ones wish to do so unperturbed by anyone exploiting invented gaps in the Act (even though the Act already contains often ignored protections for these instances). Clearly both would prefer a well organized registry, and clarity in the Act and its practical application in Michigan. Clearly they would like their homes inviolate, and would like to trust the authorities in times of trouble as they should be allowed to. Clearly both Patients and Caregivers NEED a market of some kind to ensure a constant and safe supply of medicine, and a place to trade overages they don’t desire for revenue or medicine they do desire. There are many more natural shared interests between Patients and Caregivers.
So I put to you – What would be the implications of a statewide organization or “guild”, perhaps, of “farmers” who were willing to, by the honor system alone, donate a mere 2% compensation of any successful crop to this cause? Even on the honor system alone, which is always the best way to do things in my book, a statewide PAC with that much support would be able to:
Retain an attorney for the next “farmer” who follows the law and is harassed anyways, with a huge trail of other “farmers” in lockstep behind them as witnesses and supporters, and level an historical class action suit ( if we are forced to ).
The ability to protect our own members legally, and in all circumstances assert our legitimacy before the law.
The ability to protect ourselves from thievery/cons/embezzlement.
The truth is the potential benefit of such a Guild is almost limitless. And this is all well and good…
BUT WHO WOULD DO THIS SINCERELY IF THEY HAVE NOT DONE SO ALREADY?
Credibility is earned. The almost limitless potential of such an organization or guild would be lost if lead astray, or lead without shrewd efficiency.
Who would emerge to hand out, with the full force of statewide accreditation behind them, an “MJ Oscar”, symbolically speaking? What I am getting at here is rising up and away from the Dark Ages of “self-appointed titles & advocates”, and evolving into the more mainstream world of “fully vetted, background checked, committed, honest, socially responsible, non-criminal, well-spoken but aggressive civic minded leaders” (Whew!). Because that is the type of leadership this grassroots movement deserves, needs, and cries out for!
Sadly, earning credibility only comes through real life trials, practical performance review, peer critique, and credentials. Some level of public criticism, or member review, would be required to ensure the truly visionary and beyond reproach leadership such a movement deserves. The only way to ensure continued ethical direction and practical results would be to, from the very start, begin with a Review Board composed entirely of people that no one in the entire State of Michigan can stand up and say: (for example) “This person lied to me!”, or “This person looked me in the eye, and ripped me off!”, or “This person skimmed revenue from a donation pool.” “This guy used to run a ‘dispensary’ and told me some imaginary BS about not being able to pay me after closing”.
I’m not pointing fingers, here. Everyone is accountable for their own actions in the end. But these are real world complaints I’ve overheard since 2011 now. All judgments aside, it would simply be shortsighted to put folks who make choices like that in a position of real consensus leadership and representation. As such a statewide entity, if formed, would be. It really would be irresponsible if you think about it.
We all really owe City Representative Carol Wood thanks for putting us all in the same room together in Lansing in that day. Regardless of what you think of her City politics in general, that was a smart, practical, and potentially beneficial moment for our movement. I feel it was completely squandered, overly influenced, and made all Med MJ look really bad. But the birth of an entity not unlike what I describe above could have been born out of that very meeting. Or the next one Brandon took the time to come to.
But that’s ok. To be discouraged would be foolish. History is full of half starts, near misses, almost-got-there’s, and also… success stories. Nothing at all prevents us from success, and natural consensus, but our own natural drive to be either apathetic, or our own drive to be petty and divisive. If we fail, it’s because we lived up to what people think of us anyways. No biggie!
We also need to remember that we live in a nation where we at least try not to tromp on the rights of those of the minority opinion. Or persecute them. I’m not saying you should agree with anti-mj people, but a real leader would try to find consensus with them on some issues, if at all possible.
Then there is also the real matter of “perceived legitimacy”. No politician, or more importantly, no groups of politicians, are going to unite behind a group that is only marginally united itself. Nobody in a position of leadership knows who to speak to when we have not solidified behind a “spokesperson” because we have none, because we have no real titles, because we have no real unity! Lol. Many legitimate politicians and spokespeople still keep their distance from us. They may occasionally give half scared “lip service” audiences to the squeakiest wheel so they can’t be accused of ignoring the issue. But we will never receive a fancy envelope invitation requesting “Mr. or Mrs. Med MJ Michigan, cordially inviting you to the Capitol Bldg New Years Mixer” until they are beyond any doubt of that persons (already stigmatized) claim to legitimacy. Why? Because it could come back to haunt them if they were wrong, and our community does not seem interested in the peer critique and transparency required for such an invite to be sent. And who would it be sent to?
That could happen. One day it will happen. But it will most definitely not happen until they know they are standing next to a vetted, responsible, ethical, vote carrying “leader” with a few extra bucks in their pockets to give to a few choice campaigns. It will not happen until they are willing to take a photo with you in it (and not airbrush it out later!) - Welcome to reality!
If our community is ever intelligent enough to create a well run organization like this, as opposed to living up to every stigma of being lazy and disorganized, it would be so large and influential that the people who lead it should be as beyond reproach as we can possibly find. Should we as a community ever shed these stigmas by recognizing our own natural consensus, “Farmers” should be lead by people who are confirmed among their peers to have performed honorably in all circumstances.
Michigan Farmers deserve leaders who get real results even under pressure, or adverse conditions. We deserve leaders who have a track record of performance, and transparency. Leaders who will stand up for peer review, and take responsibility for their actions with grace. Michigan Farmers deserve leaders who would never… never… think of dipping their hand in “the pot” (pun partially intended) to fund their personal life. These leaders would only enrich our cause. And we deserve leadership that can navigate what will only become tougher, more dangerous, deeper waters at every new level.
…And the only way to obtain or retain that leadership is review of proven, practical, results.
If no one PAC or ORG has accomplished these member benefits and credentials alone, then why not meet at a round table in the dead center of the State to form a SUPER PAC? If our best efforts have not managed to unify statewide behind a natural consensus yet, we as a community certainly have nothing to lose, do we?
What if we were to send people from every MJ Org, PAC, Assoc, and C.Club, ALL to a BIG meeting in the dead center of the State? I encourage you to encourage your PAC, Association, or C.Club leaders to not just participate, but help forge such an entity with bonds of handshakes and good will in the interest of what just such a Super Pac would create and accomplish. And it seems to me that many members of each of these PAC, Orgs, C.Club, etc, would qualify as “farmers”, correct?
It is not as though all the requisite parts for this don’t exist already… naturally… each in its own place.
We just need to find our harmony. And we, of all people, look foolish not doing so.
Each local geographical area, each “clique”, has its real and/or perceived “leaders”. Divided, we accomplish very little by having protests and demonstrations against the fact our elected leaders are actually addressing the Act, as opposed to ignoring it. United, and looking after our own, for our own causes, we would go far beyond the bounds of any stigma anyone has ever attempted to fetter us with to this day. A true leader would insist on, and gain for us in Michigan, full acceptance of the legitimacy of our vocation.
Obviously Michigan farmers would best be lead by… a practicing “farmer”! Advice is good, and consultation may be needed, sometimes retaining a lawyer for a specific instance, or instances. But… farmers have dirt under their nails, and true grit. Farmers are honest, humble, down to earth people because the dirt, earth, air and water is their canvas. All farmers already lead little baby plants into new stages of life and death every day, so they can’t be half bad leaders of people, correct?
So I appeal to you out of a consensus born of nature, and to “farming”.
I appeal to you farmers, and nurturers of life. I appeal to those who wish to contribute and give credit to others, not to themselves. I appeal to those who do not know the meaning of “instant gratification” as their every endeavor is a practice in hard work and patience. An investment in our future – exactly the values we need to be teaching our children today.
If you think this is a worthwhile goal with important implications, I urge you to submit any thoughts or ideas to:
Are you a member of a PAC or Org, or C.Club? Why? What is good about that particular assembly? Does it have a few recognized or titled “leaders”?
Do you believe they would participate in building such a “guild” with us? As one?
(My old Poli-Sci prof. used to say “…if you’re not a member of at least 4 PAC’s, you’re not being heard, because your ‘vote’ means squat!” - Lansing Community College ROCKS!)
Please also leave a zip code so we know all geographic areas are represented, and a way to contact you in the future.
If you would like to actively help, please let the real scoop know.
…do not donate revenue. If and when such an entity can be built by intelligent adult MJ supporters, it would go into ESCROW, as it should.
I can already think of three different farmers in three different areas I would fully trust to review any matter completely objectively, and trust them also with any donations. What if we found one for each county who made it his or her duty to visit the local farmers, listen to their concerns, and say “Whats up with that 2%?”. They would also be the first to hear about any farmer with a legitimate need of aid in their County as well. I bet you can think of three as well.
Hmmmmm… Can it be done?
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Matthew C Taylor
Grow With Us
2201 E. Michigan
Lansing, MI 48921
Monday -Friday 12:00 pm to 6:00 pm
WE ARE A PRIVATE CLUB for legal and licensed patients of the State of Michigan to acquire Medical marijuana in a safe, secure, and anonymous environment. A place for legal and licensed Caregivers in the State of Michigan to vend their services to ANY legal patient in the State of Michigan. NOTE: You MUST be a member of the private club known as C.A. in order to enter any private areas of the club.
C.A. have chosen to go well out of
our way to do everything above board, and gone out of
our way to do so in a way that makes the surrounding
community feel safe.
-No smoking on site
-No growing of any kind on site
-ONLY working with LEGAL, current, and unexpired cardholders.
-Limiting what any one patient can acquire in any given 14 day period (to avoid an unlawful re-sale, or an unregulated flood of what according to Michigan voters should be used as Medicinal Cannabis.
Doing our best to stay in touch with anyone who may like to take a tour and see that we operate above board, and provably legally in ALL our endeavors.
Good Law or Bad Law