As the State Turns

By Johnny Beaver

stateturnssymbolMarijuana Update

The Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association is, by Matthew McConaughey standards, not cool. Last week it was reported that it donated $100,000 to the group opposing Ballot Measure 91—the law that would legalize marijuana possession for Oregonian adults for amounts up to half a pound. For the stoners out there, that’s 8 ounces. Holy crap, right? Ballot Measure 91 rules!

Anyway, the group fighting against the initiative is literally the only one doing so. Made up of all 36 of Oregon’s district attorneys as well as other law enforcement advocates and groups, they’ve struggled to compete with pro 91 fundraising efforts. And by that I mean they’ve been crushed.

In the meantime, more than a few concerns have been raised about what money goes where—and where it comes from. Karen Wheeler, for example, the manager of the Oregon Addictions and Mental Health division, sent out an email to all county drug prevention departments. This email specifically warned them against using federal money for anything that could appear politically motivated or be considered lobbying. For example, state officials should avoid using millions of dollars in federal cash to build a giant robot named Betsy Close, the Pot Exterminator Transformer of Justice.

In other news, the now-maligned Oregon Marijuana “Educational” Tour has taken a few shots to the groin, and rightfully so. The Oregon Addictions and Mental Health division has backed out of any involvement due to an overtly political charge, and four legislators (two from Portland, two from Eugene) filed a complaint with the elections division accusing the tour of using public resources amongst other things. Similar complaints were echoed, including a formal filing from a Beaverton woman on Sept. 8 that questioned whether or not the tour violates election laws by taking part in political advocacy.

But is it too late? Timed conveniently to be right before ballots are mailed out, it’s hard to tell whether or not any unfair damage can be reversed.

New Form of Ecstasy Hits Eugene Streets

There’s a new drug out there, and it’s helping to make all anti-drug PSAs of the late 1980s a reality. A new form of ecstasy was found when Eugene officers busted two jackalopes carrying about three pounds of it. Produced and wrapped up to appear just like candy, the drug is considered to be abnormally dangerous because it runs a much higher than normal risk of being accidentally consumed—especially by children.

While we cherish our enterprising spirit here in America, the kind of egregious stupidity that puts people in harm’s way for no good reason is sort of frowned upon. Unless you’re in Congress, of course.

‘As the State Turns’ Public Service Announcement

You may have heard that on both Oct. 8 and Oct. 23 the Oregon skies will see eclipses. You may also know that “scientists” have put out press releases with times, types of eclipse, etc. Some other nonsense about eye protection.

Well, I’m here to tell you that it’s all a lie. Remember all those super moons? Or shall I call them “moderately larger, if you squint, moons?” Or “that could be bigger, I can’t tell, I’ve been drinking” moons.

I thought so. In the future, protect yourself and your family by only trusting information sources that come in the form of infographics on Facebook. And remember, don’t trust anything unless it’s telling you something that you enjoy hearing.

Good News: It Exists

What do you call 75 men in bras, makeup, and heels in a three-legged race? Decent human beings, standing up against gender violence and domestic abuse, competing for the honor of choosing which charity the $100 piece would go to.

The event, know as Step in Her Shoes, was a one-day rally sponsored by Pacific University’s Center for Gender Equity. Taking part on the Forest Grove campus of the school, participants came out in force to support victims and show solidarity for a better future. One participant snagged himself a pair of faux-diamond-studded stilettos, stating that he went out of his way to find them in a pile of shoes brought for those that didn’t have their own.

Considering that there were nearly 190,000 reports of sexual assault and rape in Oregon in 2010 alone, it’s great to see Oregonians coming together for an issue that has to fight twice as hard due to years of cultural ignorance and oppression.

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