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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Community Leaders meet to regulate Medical Marijuana businesses in the City of Detroit

by Richard C. Clement

"600 Million Dollars a year in taxable revenue from Marijuana" - Harry Smith CNBC


Led by Winfred Blackmon and Marcus Cummings, the Metro Detroit Community Action Coalition is attempting to develop an ordinance to reduce the number of Marijuana related business in the City of Detroit. After further review of their proposal, the group’s attempt is to shut them down and/or severely restrict their growth through the use of the Building Safety, Detroit Fire Department Fire Marshals, and other zoning restrictions that have been deemed illegal by the Michigan Supreme Court.


Developing a Marijuana regulation ordinance based on the theory rooted in the ideology of the late Harry Jacob Anslinger (May 20, 1892 – November 14, 1975) is to re-affirm the failed ideology of prohibition with racism. Anslinger was a United States government official who served as the first commissioner of the U.S. Treasury Department's Federal Bureau of Narcotics (FBN). He was a staunch supporter of prohibition and responsible for declaring Marijuana a Schedule I drug like heroin with no medical value. He was an avowed racist that described Marijuana as a drug that makes Negros attack White Women. He along with FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover sincerely believed this until they died. This mindset was carried on by President Nixon and John Ashcroft who authorized the shooting of two activists by the FBI and Michigan State Police at the Rainbow Farms camp in Vandalia Michigan in 2001. (click here for the story of Rainbow Farms)


In 2015, interviews with high ranking Detroit Police Department officials and neighborhood police officers reveal that DPD has not had a police call for trouble at ANY of the identified places of business by this group.  If places are getting raided, it is because they are doing something more than dealing with Medical Marijuana like gambling and vice. Otherwise these places of business in the district are operating within the law by permission.  This addresses the safety of the neighborhoods issue because if the Detroit Police are not having any incidents of trouble, then where is the danger?



The growth of these business are a reflection of a trend toward decriminalization of Marijuana by Federal, State and Local leaders who see the war on Marijuana as a total failure and agree that something has to change. The war on weed has a disparate impact upon our diverse community and, only serves to keep the economy of the for profit correction system in the black. Mayors like Virg Benero of Lansing and Jan Parisi of Hazel Park have come out of the closet to support decriminalization. This is because they are listening to the people and they are saying loudly and clearly that we want these businesses to patronize.

For this group to use the Detroit Zoning Board, Detroit Police, Detroit Fire, and Building Safety Departments to fight a losing proxy war against Marijuana is a sure loser and a waste of tax dollars. The Detroit Fire Department marshal wants safe entry, exit with no capacity overloads and, fire extinguishers in these facilities, just like any other business. Building Safety wants a code compliant building and, the Detroit Police want to keep the peace.  People who use Marijuana are not violent when they only use Marijuana. They get plenty hungry and that could help sales of food in the community.

The last thing the City of Detroit needs is a 1920 style of the Temperance movement who created alcohol prohibition and you see where this got us as a nation. If we can allow Hookah Bars, Cigar Bars, then what is the problem with a “weed bar”?  Given that Detroit retirees need to have their pensions protected and respected with decent health care coverage, the time may be coming so that retirees can have their Medical Marijuana covered to lower their health costs.

Using the rules of the Voluntary Employee Benefit Agreement (VEBA), the members can vote to make this happen with funds from the sale of legal marijuana to help the pension funds for Police, Fire, and General Employees get financially sound.

We cannot go back to the time where we had people like Marc Emery, a citizen of Canada extradited to the United States to serve 5 years of Federal time in Mississippi for the act of selling marijuana seeds. While Colorado makes $2.5 million dollars a month from legal Marijuana sales for schools, we can do better when we use the Cannabis plant for manufacturing products like cars, homes, fuel, fabric, and 20,000 other uses. Most of the corrections system is full of prisoners for small drug crimes.  We hope that before President Obama leaves office, he will issue a complete pardon to immediately remove these prisoners from incarceration.



Finally we hope that the next President continues the policy on a path of saneness to correct this injustice from the grave of Harry Anslinger in 1939.


Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Taking Democracy to the Hoop in Indiana - Peaceful Protest

by Richard Clement / The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.


"Time for a Party with Sparty! Go State!"  - Councilmember Pro Tem George Cushingberry Jr.

"Go Green!, Go White!"  - KB Stallworth

The recent actions by Lawmakers in Indiana to allow discrimination based on Sexual preference has created an opportunity to rebuke the War on Drugs.    A strong legal argument has been created for people who use cannabis as a part of their religion.   Yes discrimination is wrong and disrespectful to the person being discriminated against.  However, the law of unintended consequences has a silver lining of hope for people who want to put an end to it.

The case People of Guam vs Guerero (GSC Case #CRA99-025) upheld the right of an individual to use their religious sacrament without penalty of law. This 2000 decision by the Supreme Court of Guam affirmed the right of Benny Toves Guerrero to use cannabis as a part of his religious beliefs with the full protection of the Religious Freedom Act.   The starting paragraph from the legal brief affirms the basis of the decision:

“This is an appeal of the Superior Court's(Superior Case #CF0001-91) dismissal of an indictment upon motion of the Defendant, Benny Toves Guerrero. We find that the criminal statute at issue in this case, as applied to this Defendant, substantially infringes upon the Defendant's right to the free exercise of his religion as protected by the United States Constitution and the Organic Act of Guam. We conclude that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act may be applicable to Guam. Moreover, we hold that, even if it were not, in circumstances where a fundamental right is substantially infringed, the government must demonstrate both that the infringement is justified by a compelling interest and that it is the least restrictive means of achieving that objective. Therefore, we affirm the trial court's dismissal of the instant action.

The Citizens of the City of Detroit, State of Michigan, Michigan State University fans, Indiana Chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, Rastafarians, along with other organizations and believers, do not support Discrimination in any weight, shape, or form.

Fans of Michigan State University and citizens who are against selective treatment shall protest in a peaceful manner by using their religious sacrament in support of the protests against the true intent of the law to place harmful treatment of an individual or organization because of their lifestyle. Other methods include joining the 1st Church of Cannabis for a day while you are in Indianapolis, Ann Arbor, or East Lansing on Saturday April 4th for a day.  Finding a LGBT or person of a different race, culture, etc. to worship with this Saturday with their religious sacrament will send a strong message of disapproval.

The recent action by the State of Indiana affirmed the spiritual belief that good can come out of evil intent. The will of the people will prevail and with all of that farmland in Indiana, the farming community will rise up and grown industrial hemp for economic growth like Michigan. They will also wise up and make laws decriminalizing the possession and use at a State level and, prod their buddies of faith in Washington to remove it from the Controlled Substances List on the Federal level so that President Obama can sign it into law before he leaves office. 


When that happens, anyone who is in incarceration for cannabis in Indiana and the rest of America will be immediately removed from Federal, State, County, and Local institutions within 30 seconds after the act is signed into law. They must vacate the premises in one hour or be issued a ticket for loitering by a corrections officer.  This action will expunge a criminal record restoring voting rights and, will have the full effect of a Presidential Pardon.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Transportation Magic on 8 Mile and Woodward creating a new neighborhood in Detroit

by Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.




By clicking on this link, you will have a documented plan for the old Michigan State Fairgrounds from the Land Bank Authority.  This presentation will give you the actual 411 for the 157 acre location in Northwest Detroit. I along with the rest of my council members want you to have the actual plan for your records. The Magic Plus LLC group is strongly committed to hiring, training, and educating Detroit residents and like-minded citizens to improve the quality of life in our city. Councilmember Cushingberry is working with State and Federal agencies to construct a new AMTRAK station as an addition to the Magic Plus effort to redevelop the land.  

Future plans include the extension of the M1 rail line to 8 mile road and, construction of an east and west connection with the development of a M102 rail line going all the way from Lake St. Clair and points west to Livonia, Novi, and Wixom. It is high time for a regional rail system and places like the State Fair property and the old Northland Shopping center will make great hubs for regional transportation. This project will create 3 to 4 times more jobs than the current Meijer/Gateway project and, bring untold revenue to the County and City. Whereas we do not support the META group’s plan for the fairgrounds because it is rife with duplication of the Magic Plus group and does not serve the best interest of the City. 


Mayor Coleman Young always felt that the best thing for the City is working at a well-paying job with the City Services to match. Now that City employees and retirees can purchase property at %50 less than others, we want to encourage the re-investment by carrying it forward. Group purchase of homes on a block and people in them working in our Schools, Firehouses, and Police Precincts will contribute to the renaissance of Detroit.

Rapid Transit on Grand River and Gratiot will enhance the region’s growth and two bridges on the Detroit River will only add to the mix. Suggesting that a passenger light rail track be built on the old or new Ambassador Bridge may be a peace offering to settle the dispute with Mr. Maroun and everyone. Connection with DDOT and, VIA is a strong possibility if the details can be worked out. In the end it is time to stop bickering and start putting shovels in the ground to create jobs and prosperity for everyone to get the job done.



Tuesday, March 17, 2015

State Fair Property Blight Removal Project in District 2 Magic Plus LLC/REDICO and the Land Bank Authority

By Richard C. Clement

Meet the Developers of the old Michigan State Fairgrounds Land and the Detroit Land Bank Authority to view the plans to turn the area into a retail and transportation hub for rail and bus transportation. The plans also call for a new residential neighborhood and, educational complex that will serve the entire region. Make sure to get there so that you can be a witness to progress.

Magic Plus LLC/Redico group is committed to hiring and training people who live in the community to achieve a better quality of life. Council member Pro Tem Cushingberry supports this project as it will be a major job and revenue creating enhancement for District 2, the City of Detroit and, the Tri-County region of Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb Counties. The plans call for an Amtrak station with service to Ann Arbor all the way to Chicago.  The completion of this project will eventually spread development all the way between 8 Mile Road to Mc Nichols, between Woodward Avenue and John R. For more information please attend this meeting:

Wed. March 18th 6-8:30 pm

Cadillac Place (old GM HQ)
Detroit, MI  48202

The team of Redico, Beatty, Ferguson and Johnson are fully committed to the future of Detroit’s growth. Between Dan Gilbert and Roger Penske, these gentlemen will work together to make a great city. To stay updated with the progress of this project please click here. Otherwise If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to call  Councilmember Pro Tem at his office (313) 224-4535 or cushingberryg@detroitmi.gov


Sunday, March 15, 2015

George Cushingberry has declared a No Elrick Zone, No Interviews

by The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.

“Don’t be Confused, by watching Fox News“– Council member Pro Tem George Cushingberry Jr.


It is the position of Council member Pro-Tempore George Cushingberry Jr. that he will never grant an interview or feed into the sideshow dressed up as “news” with M.L. Elrick.   Mr. Cushingberry is joining a long list of public servants who will not interview with this reporter. Mr. Cushingberry has declared a No Elrick zone and, will not participate in his side show of degrading and humiliating public officials for profit.

ML Elrick will continue to be an unwilling participant in Mrs. Obama’s Lets Move Program by chasing him down for buffoonery interviews. We do understand that Mr. Elrick needs a job and is doing it well. The last thing we want is another unemployed white man blaming a black man for losing his job. Mr. Elrick is always welcome in Detroit like any other citizen to party, and work here. In 2016 we will be getting faster tax refunds to the citizens and, be able to collect missing revenue from people who work but do not live here. This and other things like music enhancement with the people through training and education.

Incidents like sponsoring insubordination of Detroit Police Officers to supervisors, trespassing, slandering the name of Sgt. William Carter, and bearing false witness with Debra Gooden as a client of his law services is a growing list of improper acts by an employee of a news agency. We hope that officer Officer Ibrahamovic gets sensitivity training instead of being dismissed. To toss a 62 year old man around like a rag doll invokes memories of Selma, and the struggle for civil rights that Mr. Cushingberry vehemently fought for all of his life. 

Until then, I will be working with my colleagues on the following:
  1. Restoring the cuts to City retirees and making sure that their fund is financially sound and that it never happens again
  2. Improving Information Technology and communication
  3. Getting opportunities for those who want work and need a job
  4. Encouraging young people to consider public service as Police and Firefighters
  5. Restoring City Airport as a commercial/international port of entry
  6. Regulation of Medical Marijuana businesses in the City through an ordinance that is fair and equitable to citizens, per the actions taken in Lansing.
  7. And many other things that are needed.


Furthermore, when Council member Benson completes his stint in jail, the 9 of us will continue our work with the executive branch to take our city to the next level. Therefore, until a retraction is issued, Mr. Cushingberry will not interview with Fox 2 Reporter ML Elrick.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Question is: Is George Cushingberry Jr. Practicing Law right now?

By The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.

“Getting by with a little help from his friends”- John Lennon

Q: Is George Cushingberry Jr. practicing law?
A: NO.

           George Cushingberry Jr. is not practicing law at this time. He does not own the website domains as it is maintained by Friends of George Cushingberry  Jr. who always remembered the struggle that he took to get his law license.  The numerous amount of clients that he has successfully fought for and won, the community work he has performed as a lawyer, teacher, and pastor strongly outweigh the side show of ineptitude that a news network wants to portray. People who contact the websites are referred to an active lawyer/associate who can handle their case.

The U of D law professor, Larry Durbin (Fox 2 News) was right if, Mr. Cushingberry has ownership the domains. Given the fact that 98% of lawyers are not tech savvy, the probability that Mr. Cushingberry maintained the websites is extremely low. All good law firms have excellent technical consultants who bail them out when their computers crash and need help.

The appearance of Debora Goodner in the television report is a false and misleading piece of information by Fox 2 reporter ML Elrick.. 

Elrick statement:  “Cushingberry's license was suspended again this year, after Debora Goodner complained that he took her case, then blew her off.” 
DEBORA GOODNER: He says Ms. Goodner, I promise you I'm going to get that money to you soon. I never heard a word from him. “

Fact Check:

Debora Goodner was never a client of Attorney George Cushignberry Jr.  Ms. Goodner only spoke to Mr. Cushingberry twice over the phone and never retained him as an attorney.

With the current situation, Mr. Cushingberry has more time on his hands now to handle the detailed matters of the City of Detroit as the City emerges from the bankruptcy.  Regarding the pay adjustment for Detroit City Council Members, if there is any group of employees who deserve a raise it is the Detroit City Council under the leadership of President Brenda Jones. The City has elected a group of Council members who are delivering what the people want, despite their differences.

Everything is being managed in a most professional way by the council and, the communication with Mayor Duggan is excellent. City leadership is closely working together to make the City of Detroit right for its citizens, including restoring some of the cuts with claw back provisions in the pension to retirees health care costs an cost of living changes. Forcing senior citizens back to working a 5 day, 8 to 5 job after 30+ years for our city is outrageous and disrespectful. It is time to restore the promises and benefits back to our City retirees with a fair and equitable claw back. Future plans for our city include Re-developing City Airport for commercial use, and restoring neighborhoods through teamwork.

Finally, the license suspension is under appeal at this time and, Mr. Cushingberry is confident that he will have it back by the end of the year. When he gets his license back, he will not be taking cases as much because he will have to spend more time Working for you in District 2 promoting, reading, writing literacy,  math and, technology in our schools to our babies.

Please don’t feed the trolls.

Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.

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