thoughts and work on marijuana law reform


New Jersey, USA
April 20
Activist Journalist
Freedom Is Green Media Group LLC
35-year-old writer and radio broadcaster with a penchant for underdog Social Justice issues. new website in 2011 #### Weekly radio program Active Voice Radio, features 25-minute Social Justice interviews ### From 2005 to 2008 I had the privilege of serving as the voice for the NORML Foundation podcasts.

APRIL 19, 2010 1:13AM

New York to Philly: Marijuana is in the media

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  *Dr. Jennifer Ashton interview on CBS

 4-18-2010: Chris Goldstein



Different marijuana topics have been generating local and national media attention recently.

From the Philadelphia Inquirer, FOX 29, WHYY, CBS News and outlets across the country, your fellow OS blogger has been featured as an expert voice on ending cannabis prohibition.

The Tax Cannabis 2010 campaign in California officially gained a ballot position during the last week of March. FOX 29 asked me to debate the issue locally on March 25, 2010. Here's a short clip:





Philadelphia makes a sensible change


On April 5th the Philadelphia Inquirer broke the story regarding the decision to lessen the prosecutorial penalties for minor marijuana possession. District Attorney Seth Williams made the decision with the vocal backing of the state Supreme Court. PhillyNORML’s effort to bring attention to the local arrest data was mentioned in the article.

"This is a very progressive thing to do on the part of the city," Goldstein said of the new policy. "I couldn't be happier about this."

He said the change also would redress a racial pattern apparent in Philadelphia drug-possession arrests. More than 80 percent typically have been of African Americans, Philadelphia police data show. READ FULL ARTICLE

A follow up by Inquirer columnist Monica Yant Kinney appeared on April 7th: Phila. pot plan saves money, court time

Chris Goldstein wishes prosecutors would leave "marijuana consumers" alone. But for now, the advocate from the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) is so gleeful at this bureaucratic baby step, he told Facebook friends he'd experienced his "Best. Monday. Ever."

Goldstein spent a year lobbying city officials, cops, and prosecutors to reconsider their stance on pot. READ FULL ARTICLE

Then on April 13th I appeared with District Attorney Williams on Radio Times hosted by Marty Moss-Coane on WHYY to discuss the issue : Marijuana law enforcement in the city of brotherly love.

Listen to the mp3

Philadelphia is moving toward changing how minor marijuana possession offenses will be treated. Joining Marty to discuss the changes and what prompted them are Philadelphia District Attorney SETH WILLIAMS and CHRIS GOLDSTEIN of Philly NORML, an advocacy group opposing marijuana prohibition. Then, we'll talk to Carroll Doherty of the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, about a recent poll they conducted that showed widespread support for the legal use of medical marijuana, as well as growing support for marijuana legalization. MORE INFO

Medical Marijuana

Also on April 13th CBS News posted a Health&Wellness segment that was debate on medical marijuana and overall legalization. Moderated by Dr. Jennifer Ashton it featured your humble host and narrator vs. Brian Darling of the Heritage Foundation in Washington DC. Here's the clip:


Watch CBS News Videos Online


The CBS News video segment was taped at the main broadcast studios on West 57th in New York City on April 9, 2010. This also afforded the chance to meet and record with WCBS 880AM News Achor, Wayne Cabot. We discussed medical marijuana in New Jersey and MS patient John Wilson. The radio piece aired that day.

There has indeed been some shift in the media towards more serious coverage of marijuana prohibition issues. This week the cannabis consumer holiday of 4/20 should bring some attention to the topic of legaliziation as well.


The local chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, PhillyNORML, meets twice per month in the city. The annual Marijuana March on historic South Street takes place on May 1, 2010.

* Photos by: C. David Freitag and WHYY

CONTACT Chris Goldstein:

Subscribe to the Philadelphia NORML Examiner – it’s free!

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