A U.S. Supreme Court case involving medical marijuana use will likely be decided on the legal arguments – not on whether there is any merit to the claim that marijuana is beneficial to those who are in pain. So says Saint Louis University law professor Sandra Johnson, who says the decision can be expected to come down to whether the federal government has a right to exercise its authority to regulate interstate commerce in a California case involving a state in which marijuana use is legal. A ruling in favor of the states does not mean marijuana use would suddenly be legal in Missouri. That would only happen if Missouri passed a state law allowing for the legal use of grass.
Archives for November 2004
Attorney General Jay Nixon is urging the Legislature to make sure additional money coming to the state from tobacco companies be used to fight teen smoking. Nixon says the state will begin getting $7-Million in extra tobacco money each year as smaller tobacco companies join the 1998 master agreement. Nixon says that new money should be used to fight teen smoking. The Legislature hasn’t approved much targetted spending from tobacco money. A small percentage has been set aside for life sciences programs, but other than that, the Legislature has used tobacco money to ease budget pressure the past few years.
Governor Bob Holden’s Chief of Staff has called it quits. Jane Deuker became Holden’s Chief of Staff in April of last year after having served as the Governor’s chief legal counsel since August of 2002. Dueker will return to her hometown of St. Louis where she’s accepted a position with the Stinson Morrison and Hecker law firm. She’ll specialize in commercial litigation and governmental law.
Despite Marc Bulger’s 448-yard performance, Brett Favre was not going to be denied in his 200th consecutive regular season start. The Packers, led by Najeh Davenport’s 187-yards rushing, beat the Rams 45-17 at Lambeau Field Monday night. Green Bay got on the board twice thanks to fumbles from Isaac Bruce, who caught nine passes for 170 yards. Ahmad Carroll picked up Bruce’s first fumble in the first quarter and returned it 40 yards to break a scoreless tie. In the fourth quarter, Michael Hawthorne accounted for the game’s final score by going 34 yards on Bruce’s second fumble. The Rams also had a risky move blow up in their face in the third quarter. With Green Bay leading 21-10, Mike Martz decided fake a 42-yard field on fourth and seven. The attempt failed and the Packers made the Rams pay with a 4-play, 75-yard touchdown drive and they took a 28-10 lead. The Rams moved the ball 77 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter to get within 11 points, but the Packers responded with 17 unanswered points to end the game. St. Louis was held to just 47 yards rushing on the night and remained a game behind first-place Seattle in the NFC West.
Before the Missouri Tigers season finale against Iowa State, running back Damien Nash was asked to speculate on what off-season changes might occur with the Missouri football team. He decided not to answer that question. Apparently the first change will be his departure. Nash told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Monday that he will not be back with the team in 2005 and head coach Gary Pinkel confirmed it with a press release last night. In the release Pinkel said, “We certainly had hoped to have Damien with us next year , and while it’s disappointing to see him go, we’ll do everything we can to assist him with his future plans.” Nash rushed for 817 yards and seven touchdowns in 2004, as the Tigers lost five straight, but ended the season 5-6 after beating Iowa St. 17-14 in overtime Saturday. Before the game, Nash described the season as “worthless”. After Missouri blew a 17-point lead to Oklahoma St., Nash talked to a columnist from the Kansas City Star and questioned some of the play-calling. Those remarks were published. Nash was subsequently suspended from the next game against Nebraska. If he is granted a release from his scholarship, Nash can transfer to another Division-I school without sitting out a year. If he chooses, Nash can transfer to a Division-II school without waiting out, regardless of what MU decides. But Nash may be looking beyond college. In yesterday’s statement, Pinkel added “(Nash has) indicated a desire to explore professional opportunities, and we will begin helping him with that process right now, as well as other potential options.”
Cardinals’ starter Matt Morris will be undergoing arthroscopic shoulder surgery today. The procedure is expected to clean up the shoulder and relieve a lot of the pain that has bothered Morris lately. It will also prevent him from getting a huge deal on the free agent market. In fact, Morris has instructed his agent not to go in search of a big contract. Morris told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that he hopes he can sign a one-year deal with the Cardinals during the off-season. Last year, Morris was 15-10 with a 4.72 ERA. His earned run average was the highest of his career, by a long shot. In 2003 he had a 3.76 ERA and had never peaked above 3.57 before 2003.
The Baseball Hall of Fame released its ballot for the Class of 2005 on Monday. 27 candidates—with 12 newcomers—are on this year’s ballot. Two of the first-time candidates are former Cardinals’ outfielder Willie McGee and former Royals’ reliever Jeff Montgomery. McGee won the National League batting title twice in his career. In 1985 he hit .353, which was the best mark ever for a switch hitter. McGee also won the N.L. Most Valuable award in 1985. In 1990, McGee won the batting title again, but some might argue that he shouldn’t have won it. He was hitting .335 when he was traded to the Oakland A’s. Since stats don’t transfer from league-to-league, his average was frozen at .335. After the 1990 season, McGee spent four seasons with the Giants and one with Boston before returning to St. Louis in 1996 and finishing his career there in 1999. McGee was a lifetime .296 hitter and made four All-Star teams. McGee won the Gold Glove three times. Jeff Montgomery played 12 of his 13 major league seasons in Kansas City, where he became the team’s all-time saves leader with 304. He also set franchise marks most games pitched (686) and most saves (304). He currently ranks 16th on major league baseball’s all-time save list. Montgomery was named the Sporting News A.L. Fireman award winner and the A.L. Rolaids Relief Man of the Year in 1993 when he was tied for the league lead with 45 saves. Montgomery was named to three A.L. All-Star teams.
The SMS Lady Bears earned their first win of the season with a 75-47 win over Arkansas-Little Rock at the Hammons Student Center Monday night. The Lady Bears burned the nets to a crisp by shooting 57% from the field—Jenni Lingor led the way with 21 points and an 8-for-10 shooting performance. K.C. Cowgill added 17 points and hit five three-pointers. SMS is still without starting guard Keri Coch, who has a knee injury. The Lady Bears are 1-2 on the season.
Missouri Southern State University in Joplin has decided to go agaisnt the tide. The Board of Governors is reducing tuition by two dollars a credit hour, starting next fall. The Board hopes to reverse enrollment declines. The school lost 600 students three years ago when it jumped tuition 37 percent to offset losses of state funding. The school is also changing its admission standards so they’re less complicated.
He was born in the small Missouri community of Florida, and later wrote, “The village contained a hundred people and I increased the population by one percent. It is more than many of the best men in history could have done for a town…There is no record of a person doing as much – not even Shakespeare.” The roots of Samuel Clemens/Mark Twain extend deep into Missouri. He was four when his family moved from Florida to Hannibal. He spent fourteen years there and carried those years into his writing the rest of his life.