Most Read
  • Lily Tomlin coming to Ann Arbor

    Detroit home-girl Lily Tomlin will perform at the Hill Auditorium in Ann Arbor on Saturday, June 14. A press release reads, “Get together with Lily Tomlin for an unforgettable night of fun and sidesplitting laughter. “Tomlin is amazing” The NY Times and “as always a revelation.” The New Yorker This unique comic artist takes her audience on what the Washington Post calls a “wise and howlingly funny” trip with more than a dozen of her timeless characters—from Ernestine to Mrs. Beasley to Edith Ann.” “With astounding skill and energy, Tomlin zaps through the channels like a human remote control. Using a fantastic range of voices, gestures and movements, she conjures up the cast of characters with all the apparent ease of a magician pulling a whole menagerie of animals from a single hat.” NY Daily News “Her gentle touch is as comforting as it is edifying.” NY Time Out She has “made the one-person show the daring, irreverent art form it is today.” Newsweek Her long list of awards includes: a Grammy; two Tonys; six Emmys; an Oscar nomination; two Peabodys; and the prestigious Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. Find more info here. Follow @City_Slang

    The post Lily Tomlin coming to Ann Arbor appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Welcome Valerie Vande Panne, the new Detroit Metro Times editor

    The Detroit Metro Times, Detroit’s award-winning alternative weekly media company, is proud to announce the recent hire of Valerie Vande Panne as Editor-in-Chief. An award-winning independent journalist and Michigan native, Vande Panne’s work has appeared in Crain’s Detroit Business, The Daily Beast, and Salon, among other publications. Previously, Vande Panne attended Harvard University and was a regular contributor to The Boston Phoenix, and a news editor of High Times magazine. She has spent years covering drug policy among other subjects, including the environment, culture, lifestyle, extreme sports, and academia. “Valerie understands our business and what we expect to accomplish in Detroit. She has an excellent sense for stories that will move our readers, as well as experience with balancing print and digital content. I’m excited to have her at the paper and trust her leadership as we move forward,” said Detroit Metro Times publisher Chris Keating.

    The post Welcome Valerie Vande Panne, the new Detroit Metro Times editor appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Joumana Kayrouz to cover ‘Metro Times’

    She welcomes you when you enter Detroit, from every direction, with the one word that might just be Detroit’s biggest philosophical question: Injured? Joumana Kayrouz is deeper than the inflated image watching over Detroit, peddling justice to the poor and broken of the city. This Wednesday, Drew Philp takes us behind the billboard and into the heart of the Kayrouz quest. (And all of Brian Rozman’s photos of Kayrouz have not been retouched.) Check out MT‘s cover story, on newsstands Wednesday!

    The post Joumana Kayrouz to cover ‘Metro Times’ appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Fire at PJ’s Lager House, no people hurt

    There was a fire in an upstairs apartment at PJ’s Lager House on Monday evening. No people were hurt, although three cats belonging to the tenants died after CPR. The fire broke out around 10:30 p.m. during a show featuring Zombie Jesus & the Chocolate Sunshine Band, Curtin, and Jeffrey Jablonsky. “We just smelled smoke and someone yelled everyone has to get out,” 33-year-old Nick Leu told MLive. On the Lager House Facebook page in the early hours of the morning, a post said, “We at PJ’s lager House would like to thank everyone for their care and concern. Also, a very big THANK YOU to all who stepped up to do what they could this evening. The fire was contained to the upstairs but due to water damage in the bar, we will be closed until it can be assessed. Everyone is safe and we will keep you updated.” A later update read, “Update from the big boss. Since there was no damage to the stage side of the bar, the show will go on tomorrow! You may have to enter through the back door and there may not be a large selection of booze but we are going […]

    The post Fire at PJ’s Lager House, no people hurt appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Music review roundup

    Send CDs, vinyl, cassettes, demos and 8-tracks to Brett Callwood, Metro Times, 1200 Woodward Heights, Ferndale MI 48220. Email MP3s and streaming links to The Sugar Clouds’ Partners Don’t Do That (They Watch and be Amazed) (Wax Splat) is a nostalgic look at the psychedelic days of ’60s grooviness. Even the album cover looks like a lava lamp. The male-female vocals have a sort of Jefferson Airplane feel, and the songs are blessed with both sugary sweet pop melodies and a garage-y earthiness. The story of the band’s formation is rather interesting; the two vocalists, Greg and Melissa Host, are a divorced couple who wrote the songs in their living room. The band is still together, so this divorce was a hell of a lot more civil than any we’ve ever known of. Steffanie Christi’an has friends in fairly high places. Her new Way Too Much mini-album is being put out by Nadir Omowale’s Distorted Soul label, and she is also a regular feature on Jessica Care Moore’s Black Women Rock revue. Maybe the choice of cover image isn’t the best – she looks a bit like a Tina Turner tribute act here. But that can and should be […]

    The post City Slang: Music review roundup appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Detroit councilman: Increased parking fines an ‘anti-growth strategy’

      There’s at least one city councilmember who’s less than pleased with Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr’s plan to increase all parking violation fines. Councilman Gabe Leland, whose district represents the city’s west side, issued a statement today, calling Orr’s plan a potential “deterrent” to attracting people to the city. I don’t believe the argument to raise the parking ticket fines from $30 to $45 and eliminate the $10 early payment fine are justification for this action. The emergency manager’s order to increase ticket fines places city government inefficiencies on the backs of our residents who need to do business in downtown and other parts of our city. And, this will increase the barrier for people to frequent Detroit-based establishments; likely to be a deterrent for some to shop and dine in our city. Leland suggested implementing a plan that maintains current rates for fines and reduces operating inefficiencies to collecting parking fines. “In my view, generating revenue by increasing fines when residents from neighborhoods must go downtown to get licenses and permits, attend court appointments and do other necessary business, is the wrong direction,” Leland said. “…Additionally, generating revenue using fines when we are trying to grow this city and attract […]

    The post Detroit councilman: Increased parking fines an ‘anti-growth strategy’ appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.



Search thousands of events in our database.


Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.


Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

MT on Twitter
MT on Facebook

Print Email

Higher ground

Why Bill Schuette Hates Patient Rights

Nobody fighting to end marijuana prohibition is saying anything about giving it to children.

Photo: wiki commons, License: N/A

wiki commons

SINCE BILL SCHUETTE was elected Michigan attorney general in 2010, he has fought tooth and nail against all but the strictest interpretation of the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act, and aided municipalities in finding ways to thwart and circumvent provisions of the law.

Actually, his efforts started even earlier, as he led the forces fighting against the MMMA before it was passed in 2008. Since then he has been a holy terror, ripping away at any interpretation of the law that was not strictly set out in writing. The attorney general’s office has joined in county prosecutions against medical marijuana defendants and shut down dispensaries across the state. He has intimidated patients, caretakers, doctors, municipalities, police and county prosecutors by declaring that federal marijuana law supersedes state law.

For instance, Schuette has said that police who confiscate marijuana from patients would run afoul of the law if they returned the medication to them even after they prove they are certified by the state. He said that police who return it risk criminal prosecution as drug dealers because marijuana is illegal under federal law. Of course, Schuette’s opinion of the supremacy of federal law doesn’t extend to other things, such as the Affordable Health Care Act, which he opposes.

So it was no surprise when I saw a headline on the MLive website the other day declaring, “Decriminalize marijuana? Michigan AG Bill Schuette doesn’t want to go down that road.”

Schuette was responding to proposed legislation introduced last week by Rep. Jeff Irwin, D-Ann Arbor, to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana to a civil offense, punishable by a $25 fine for the first offense. There would be no criminal record involved.

“We should not go down this road of legalizing drugs,” Schuette told a Lansing television newscaster. “It exposes young kids, children, to ever more potent drug use, and I think that’s not good for them in the future.”

Apparently Schuette still considers Reefer Madness to be the cutting edge of information about marijuana. Others in his camp seem to be hanging on to this concern for saving children from the scourge of marijuana. It may be their last gasp.

On Tuesday, CARE of southeastern Michigan, an agency that gets 60 percent of its funding from the Macomb County Community Mental Health Office of Substance Abuse, kicked off its “Protecting Kids from Marijuana” statewide campaign.

That’s fine, but I wonder why they think decriminalizing marijuana or having medical marijuana is a threat to children. Nobody fighting to end marijuana prohibition is saying anything about giving it to children. They tend to argue that legalizing and regulating marijuana will do more to keep it away from children than the current situation. Nobody is asking to see their ID when they go to buy marijuana from an illegal dealer. When I was in college there were two guys on my floor of the dormitory who sold marijuana to anybody who wanted it.

By the same token, if I wanted a beer I had to find someone who was old enough to buy it — and then go off campus to get it. Under the MMMA, anybody who wants to procure medical marijuana must have a card (although recent court rulings have pretty much stopped all above-the-board marijuana sales). And, in the case of minors who may have a medical need, a custodial parent and two doctors have to sign the application.

Protecting children is why, despite Schuette’s and others’ opposition, two bills recently introduced in the state Legislature are so important.

Irwin’s bill to decriminalize marijuana would go a long way toward keeping families together and not stigmatizing marijuana users for life after a conviction for (a small amount of) drug possession — making it difficult for them to find jobs, get education or get government assistance. This helps children if families are intact and breadwinners can bring some pay home. Also, decriminalization takes some of the profit out of sales and disincentivizes drug gangs from running the market, which has been found to be pretty deadly.

“Despite the fact that we’re spending a minimum of $325 million a year on arresting, trying and incarcerating marijuana users in this state, we know marijuana has never been more available,” Irwin said in a press conference, pointing out that the status quo is not working.

The other bill, introduced by Rep. Mike Callton, R-Nashville, would give local municipalities the choice to allow marijuana dispensaries to operate in their areas — or not. One of the biggest issues around the MMMA is that it allows for patients and caregivers to grow marijuana, there is no provision for those who can’t or don’t want to grow their own, or for those who have had some kind of disruption of their garden. Having places where patients can go to buy marijuana is a common sense solution that also aids the state economy through fees and taxes. It also wouldn’t hurt the state economy if we stopped chasing marijuana users around and incarcerating them.

Both state bills have bipartisan support. However, just because they were introduced doesn’t mean they will be passed — or even see a vote. Still, the fact that people in our state Legislature are bringing these issues up is a huge step forward. Nothing

is going to change if we don’t talk about it.


HERE’S A LITTLE something else regarding federal supremacy. A recent report from the federal Congressional Research Service on legal issues around marijuana legalization in Colorado and Washington state pretty much agrees with Schuette about the pre-eminence of federal law. At the same time, however, the report concludes that, at best, only the biggest commercial enterprises would be under possible federal scrutiny and prosecution. The report also cites legislation introduced allowing those operations to continue, such as the Ending Federal Prohibition of Marijuana Act of 2013 and the Respect States’ and Citizens’ Rights Act of 2013.

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus
We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus