Why am I not shocked at the report of fatal errors in the pot legalization petition?

From the Argus Leader tonight comes a tale of the devil weed, and the people who want to make their gateway drug of choice legal. And their inability to write a ballot measure:

A writing error might cost a ballot measure campaign its chances of legalizing recreational marijuana in South Dakota next year.


“We don’t believe that the way that it is written actually legalizes it except for paraphernalia,” Jason Hancock, director of the Legislative Research Council, said Monday.

Supporters could submit an amended proposal, restarting the clock, Hancock said, but that would void all existing ballot measure signatures.

“They’re going to have to start over for gathering signatures,” he said.

Read it here.

Let’s see. They couldn’t get medical pot on the ballot in 2016, because of “notary error.”  

Now, the same people who made those mistakes are making new ones in their crusade for recreational pot. 

And they have to start their 2018 petition over because they couldn’t write their 2018 ballot measure for recreational pot correctly.

Why am I not shocked?

73 Replies to “Why am I not shocked at the report of fatal errors in the pot legalization petition?”

    1. Spencer

      Extensive drug use would explain a lot of what is in the assisted suicide measure. Many of the people circulating the petitions interchange both. People are going to be shocked when they realize that they CANNOT opt out of assisted suicide and people can communicate their supposed desire to commit suicide on behalf of the patient. It basically has all of the legal language needed for someone or some entity to get rid of inconvenient people.

  1. grudznick

    It will probably forever be a mystery if the failures were due to the association with Mr. Nelson, who is an incompetent buffoon; the writers minds being dulled by the effects of the demon weed, which is bad, it is very bad; or the partisan jimmying and advising by the Council of Legislative Research which probably wants to stick it to Messrs. Nelson and Nesiba for being arses.

  2. grudznick

    It is funny when Messrs. Nesiba and Nelson, the left and right fringes of the demented, advise the tokers of the demon weed and they all fail. Fail. Who among you is surprised?

  3. Anonymous

    How does the LRC reach that interpretation when section 2 of the measure clearly lays out the legalization of the possession of marijuana? Yes, there should be a “the” in there, maybe a comma or two, and probably some better wording, but the meaning is still clear.

  4. Miranda Gohn

    Why is this no surprise? Melissa Mentele and Reina Parker brought their traveling snake oil show from New Approach South Dakota to the Davison County Democrats meeting and I had an exchange with them on that party units facebook page. These two sound like Marijuana Industry shills trying to get a lucrative position if this ever gets legalized claiming smoking MJ will solve any and all problems. Reina Parker is supposedly on an Advisory Committee for the SD Youth Suicide Prevention Project and works with LGBTQ youth and adults in Sioux Falls and these two are pushing smoking pot will benefit all of them? Really? Absolutely irresponsible and unethical! What are their credentials to be giving this kind of advice to some of our most vulnerable populations? That goes against the practices of mental health professionals that have spent years advancing their education and in their practices. I would advise parents & adults who are looking for resources to avoid Sioux Falls.

    1. KM

      Way to go Miranda. Keep up the hard work, it will pay off. I hope you asked the same questions at the meeting.

      1. Miranda Gohn

        I tried to copy and paste a portion of the exchange from the Davison County Democrats facebook page with Melissa Mentele and Reina Parker. Unbelievable!

        Reina Parker

        Reina Parker Cannabis generates phytoestrogen which relieves symptoms of dysphoria in male to female transgender individuals. They are a high risk for mental illness due not only to the trauma of living inside the wrong body but because of how society treats trans people. The phytoestrogens along with the cannabinoids treat the dysphoria, anxiety and depression of trans females with positive results. I am an LGBT activist and Youth Outreach Director for an advocacy organization and liaise with the state of South Dakota on behalf of LGBT individuals both youth and adults for mental illness, domestic violence and discrimination.

        LikeShow more reactions
        · Reply · July 17 at 6:18pm

          1. Miranda Gohn

            True! Soy products can help in a particular area but the core component is that these two NASD one being the Hanson County SDDP Vice Chair is advocating just smoking pot will solve their problems. Individual therapy with a qualified mental health professional is a key component that will look for underlying issues that need to be addressed, challenge the patient and look for alternatives. Teaching healthy non chemical ways to cope. Some sessions are going to be hard emotionally but needed to grow in a positive way. Showing up to a session some of which may be pretty intense high is not going to help either.

            Their claims sound like classic High Times magazine sponsored by the MJ industry similar to what the Tobacco industry used in the early 20th century or a couple of potheads just pulling stuff out of their rear ends.

    2. Tara Volesky

      Miranda…….you are telling fibs. First of all Reina Parker was not at the meeting. Melissa Mentele is only responsible for the cannabis initiatives. The two are only helping each other carry petitions. I was at the meeting. Very informative and educational. Common sense tells me we are way behind the times. There’s no going back Miranda. It’s working in other states and the tax revenue is booming. I think your problem with Melissa goes deeper then Cannibus. You should attend a meeting so you can ask her respectful questions instead of bashing her on fb and the blogs.

        1. Tara Volesky

          I just read the comments. Quite a lively back and forth. lol. I guess it would be in both parties interests to agree to disagree. I see both side Miranda, but I could care less if an Adult wants to smoke marijuana. Really has no affect on me. The thing that bothers me is marijuana is keeping people out of work, because say you smoke a couple times a week on an average, chanchs are you are not going to get hired because you won’t pass a drug test.

          1. KM

            Tara – So, you don’t care if an adult wants to smoke it, doesn’t affect you? What are your thoughts about if an adult has a child, child finds a MJ vaporizer, brings it school & then proceeds to get other students high in the bathroom? It happened at my kids school, it was just with alcohol not weed. You want that opportunity for our youth? I surely do not. You need to educate yourself on the negative effects of legalizing MJ for rec use.

            I didn’t think the power of suggestion had such a hold on you. We are behind in the times? We are missing out on the tax revenue boom? Take a look at what the business owners in Durango, CO are saying about their troubles. You think that tax revenue is helping them? Next we will hear you saying… no more drug tests bc ppl can’t get jobs, we need to be woke.

            1. Tara Volesky

              KM…..I would hope adults would be smart enough to use common sense around children, and not have marijuana, prescription drugs, or alcohol in the presence of children. Parents need to educate their children and have open communication. Children don’t like hypocrisy.

          2. Miranda Gohn

            Tara that is a choice they make. No one is putting a gun to their heads forcing them to smoke pot. An Employer or rental property owner has every right to refuse to employ or rent to those who smoke pot for various reasons. They make that choice knowing it will limit their opportunities.

            Are you building a rental property in Mitchell? If so, look up the issues rental property owners are having in Colorado since legalization. That is your investment, your money and you have to think about your other tenants also since that is their home. Will you be managing it yourself which may include cleaning those apartments, painting and repairing or hiring it out? You will have to wash walls after someone has smoked pot in there before you pain and those washcloths are gross aside from getting that foul odor out! Again! That is your time and money and you do not want high turnover!

            Newer buildings will be especially susceptible to moisture issues if this law passes and they are growing plants in these units. Jerry Rigged wiring for the lighting is a fire hazard and you know some tenants will jerry rig. I could go on.

            1. Miranda Gohn

              Paint* Even vaping can cause issues since they can be scented and the drywall can absorb those scents making that apartment difficult to rent. You may have tenants or future tenants that are hyper sensitive to smells or have breathing issues. Do everything in screening to reduce the drama too since that home is your tenants sanctuary. Many things to consider.

              1. Miranda Gohn

                Tara you also have to think about resale value of your property. If a buyer knows that you have no issue renting out to those who smoke pot or are into the drug culture especially if this ballot initiative passes where they can grow plants in their apartments and all the issues that come with that it most likely will affect the resale value of your property.

                The buyer would need one heck of a good building inspector like John Claggett in Mitchell who is also Davison County Commissioner and active in the local Republican Party unit there. He is the best and most thorough inspector I have ever run across besides work ethic. He should also test for meth residue in those apartments since that is toxic.

            2. Tara Volesky

              Miranda, I have a rule no smoking cigarettes in my units. They are very respectful renters. If pot is legalized, I would have the same rule.

              1. Miranda Gohn

                Good for you Tara! We have been the same to my knowledge. Laying down the law of what is expected and the consequences prior to lease signing really helps so everyone knows and reduces the risk of misunderstanding. They will be evicted if they break those rules and then we will legally recover damages and lost rent. That is to protect everyone.

                The slumlords probably will not care.

  5. Gen X

    What is the typo? The Argus has this big story but fails to include what the “typo” is. If anyone knows, please share. I haven’t even read the measure … so maybe it’s obvious.

    1. Gen X

      OK. I read the measure. Not less than 4 flaws – and that doesn’t include the one actual “typo” that I saw. (btw, I’m not going to tell you what the mistakes are, you have to find them yourself!!) They should’ve hired a non-user to write this measure.

  6. SD Citizen

    I’m going to ignore the underlying issue of the ballot measure for a second.

    How do you write an article about a flaw in ballot measure language and not quote the exact language? Come on, Argus Leader.

    Perhaps more importantly, if you’re proposing a ballot measure, presumably to be voted on statewide, how do you not hire an attorney to draft the language of such measure? The primary proponents of a ballot measure should not be drafting the measure on their own. If you want to be taken seriously, hire some professionals and put forth a professional image that reasonable people could get behind. Just sayin’

  7. Anonymous

    Isn’t there a second recreational marijuana bill? If so why not just scrap this one and focus on the other one.

    1. Miranda Gohn

      Have you read the 2nd one to legalize recreational Marijuana? It is Hilarious! You would think it was written as a joke but the author was not joking. You can go inside his house in Spearfish to sign it. It is sprawled out all over his wall. He is a close friend of Cory Heidelberger.

  8. Anne Beal

    I am totally like (ooh wow) confused about the phytoestrogens which attach to estrogen receptors and block the effects of estrogen and consequently relieve the dysphoria experienced by men who are taking estrogen (pills or patches) as they transition from male to female. If the estrogen in their prescription is causing dysphoria, maybe they should stop using it?

    So what I see here is people who have no medical need to use a prescription medication (estrogen) developing side effects from that medication and then have a medical need to use another drug (marijuana) to counteract the side effects of a drug they never needed to begin with.
    Got it?

    Is Medicaid going to pay for this, too?

  9. Cliff Hadley

    Must’ve forgot to include the paragraph spelling out where free munchie would be available.

  10. Doc

    All funyuns jokes aside, which are both appropriate and hilarious…
    Miranda, the notion that legalized cannabis would in any way be linked to teen suicide is ridiculous.
    You can be against this without being fanatical. Just as you can be for this without being fanatical. (Perhaps not on the internet, though)

  11. Miranda Gohn

    Doc I am not saying that teens smoking pot will make them suicidal. Not even close. What I am saying is that our most vulnerable populations need help. Encouraging them to smoke pot puts them at high risk of just self medicating and never dealing with their core challenges which can linger or just get worse over time. Especially when the messaging being put out there is that it is harmless and is good for them which is completely false. That messaging makes it insidious by itself. we are lacking an honest discussion that NASD advocates would deny the data that Psychologists who are for legalization with stipulations part of which includes education, strengths, frequency of use, pros and cons and treatment for dependency. I have talked to numerous professionals and legislators in Minnesota and we agreed on the approach but there has to be again an honest discussion first and cut thru the baloney.

    Get high or spend hours clinical hours working thru issues and experiences that could be very intense and painful yet find healthier ways to live, cope and communicate?

    1. Doc

      All fair points. Just looking for clarification.
      I don’t think a rational person would argue that it’s 100% good for you / harmless, but I also don’t think the vocal minority pushing legalization is 100% rational. They’re also 1 issue fanatical people, so while their enthusiasm is appreciated it’s similar to any 1 issue person with unrealistic views on legislation.

      Agree on honest discussion. If both sides of the argument would put their crazy guns down it would be better.
      (full disclosure, I’m for legalization but realize that there are downsides. But I get a little itchy when I see non stop “IF YOU SMOKE CANNABIS YOU’LL PUT THE TURKEY IN THE BATHTUB AND THE BABY IN THE OVEN” rationale. It’s equally as insane if not more. )

      Thanks for the answer – have a great day! 🙂

      1. Miranda Gohn

        hahaha! Good one! Thanks Doc! Honestly I’d rather be talking about other issues but feel the need to call them out on their baloney, deal with this and move on.

    2. Miranda Gohn

      Last point on this as a follow up and may seem so incredibly obvious referring to anyone dealing with present and past issues. Getting high will be much cheaper short term but investing in oneself via quality individual therapy which may take months or even years will most likely result in higher income potential, higher rate of savings/investments and a better quality of life.

    3. Tara Volesky

      Miranda, I believe recreational marijuana is illegal for children until they become the adult age of 21. Get you facts straight. Most people are not for children partaking in alcohol or marijuana. These bills are adult only unless prescribed by a DR.

  12. Melissa

    Again Miranda you refuse to look at science as an answer to what we have attempted to educate you on. Why is it so hard for you to understand that the demographic you represent finds relief from the hormonal imbalances from cannabis oils? If you truly cared about them and their needs you would shut your mouth about “smoking” and do your research. That would help you understand that smoking would not replace the cannabinoids needed for hormonal therapy what is needed is a oils that are extracted and have no THC. You have reached a point in your fanatical comments that you just look like a psycho.

    You can lie, make up facts, skew the truth BUT science always wins. Always. http://integr8health.com/how-marijuana-works/

    Funny you should mention John Dale being a friend of DFP….I didn’t see him working on Cory’s campaign BUT I did see a nice post about YOU. Funny how that works right? The truth is a pesky thing. https://dakotafreepress.com/2016/02/14/legislatures-anti-trans-bullying-drives-aberdeen-woman-from-south-dakota/

    As far as the content of this original post. The truth always comes out in the wash. We are not concerned. It’s beautiful though all this FREE media coming our way. We signed up over 100 new people in the past 24 hours. Our amazing attorneys have done their work & had their time to speak. We are ok at Camp NASD. Pushing forward & working hard to bring true reform to SD.

    1. Miranda Gohn

      Wow! Someone is a little testy! I noticed your very testy responses to those on the Argus and NASD that simply questioned your methods and the mistakes made by NASD again.

      Melissa, Would you please remind us of yours and Reina Parker’s professional credentials to be giving out such advice that actual mental health professionals here in the United States have spent years advancing their degrees getting a Doctorate in Medicine or Psychology and working with patients in their practices that would completely disagree with the reckless snake oil advice you are giving out?

      Is High Times magazine or some MJ industry offering a 24 hour online degree now?

      Say anything to get this passed now? It is too bad because you and your organization could of handled this an entirely different way by just being honest and upfront with South Dakotans and then let them decide but it is all MJ culture myths being advanced with ZERO negatives being mentioned once again but not quite as bad as when Ryan Gaddy and SDAP tried and failed before. The end result will most likely be the same.

    2. Miranda Gohn

      I would advice South Dakotans to read the initiatives to see how flawed they are. One concern is for those looking to buy houses where MJ users grow plants if this passes. Excess moisture issues, odor, mold, structural caused by moisture and in regards to Medical MJ those who are rental property owners could be looking at problems, substantial expenses and liability that they are now dealing with in Colorado and other states that have legalized. Another example of being single issue focused on passing something quickly without thinking things thru as the far reaching consequences that will arise.

    3. Tara Volesky

      Miranda, I read your story. I am sorry people can be so vicious and condescending. Best of luck to you in Minnesota. Remember, you are valued. Don’t let bullies bring you down. There are many good people out there that you can surround yourself with.

      1. Miranda Gohn

        Tara, Thank you! I really appreciate your kind words. I’m doing good, not a victim or a person with a chip on my shoulder and am back in Aberdeen helping my elderly parents with one of the family businesses I grew up in.

        1. Tara Volesky

          Well that’s very nice of you to care for your parents. I am sure they really appreciate it. There are not many children that would not do that for their parents. I commend you.

  13. Mentele

    I do encourage people to read the initiatives in their entirety and ask questions. That is the only way to educate and bring the truth into the light. I also encourage 100% for people to look at legal states & the issues they are having. We will have issues and we will have people who abuse it, those states are showing SD how to combat those issues BEFORE they cause harm.

    Education-Research-Science are all keys to a responsible and safe transition into this issue. I cannot force you to see reason and to look objectively at this issue I can only hope you spend as much time researching this subject as you do stalking me online.

    1. KM

      Mentele – “stalking”….whoa, better be careful with your words. From what I have read Miranda is very well spoken and has brought up valid points & questions, especially the ones concerning the trans community. One question you seem to keep avoiding is: what are your credentials? Is it that you have been smoking pot illegally in SD and just really want it to be legal here? Because you hesitate to answer the question, that is what I assume. Communities are suffering in states that have legalized MJ: theft, homelessness, and as MG has mentioned legal issues with tenants. I hope Miranda keeps challenging & speaking out against what you & NASD are pushing.

      1. Miranda Gohn


        Remember the way out there accusations of harassment and stalking which may have completely surprised you as me? It is widely known that those who consume Marijuana can be more prone to paranoia than those who do not consume the drug. That has been long documented by REAL medical professionals that have advanced degrees and not someone who just reads books and stayed at a Holiday Inn Express. You will see an increase of conspiracy theories too (Larry Kurtz) A number of underlying mental health issues can come out when some ingest on a regular basis aside from A-motivational syndrome.

        1. KM

          Gohn – “who just read books and stayed at a Holiday Inn Express”… funny. I was surprised about harassment accusation, but playing the victim card seems be the easy way out nowadays.

          I’m still waiting for the questions I presented to be answered? Though I won’t be holding my breath.

          Your comment about the mother in Mitchell leads me to the thought of mixing drugs. When ppl mix alcohol and MJ they can become violent or black out and not remember their actions, a very dangerous situation. This mother’s voice will be heard in the voting booth along w/many other parents….if it makes it that far.

  14. Miranda Gohn

    Melissa, You may wish to look up actual law before getting all defensive and making claims of “harassment” as you did at the Davison County Democrats facebook page where I brought opposing views to the ballot initiatives you and your organization are pushing to a public vote here in South Dakota and now “stalking”. I know that I will not be alone in opposition in voicing concerns so you may wish to consult one of your attorneys before making such accusations or get someone else that is more level headed to take over NASD.

  15. Mentele

    Let me share the law with you Miranda. You have repeatedly trolled me on FB commenting & making slanderous statements regarding an issue that you do not understand nor care to educate yourself about. Your earlier comments about my comments on media yesterday and insinuating I am “testy” really is concerning to me. Why would you assume you know me or anything about me to gauge my mood by an online statement? It’s getting to be quite concerning. I want you to be aware of what the SD laws on harassment and stalking are before you comment again. That no legitimate purpose is a doozy….your opinion is not a legitimate purpose nor is your inability to understand science.

         22-19A-4.   Harasses defined. For the purposes of this chapter, harasses means a knowing and willful course of conduct directed at a specific person which seriously alarms, annoys, or harasses the person, and which serves no legitimate purpose.

         22-19A-1.   Stalking as a misdemeanor–Second offense a felony. No person may:
                 (1)      Willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly follow or harass another person;
                 (2)      Make a credible threat to another person with the intent to place that person in reasonable fear of death or great bodily injury; or
                 (3)      Willfully, maliciously, and repeatedly harass another person by means of any verbal, electronic, digital media, mechanical, telegraphic, or written communication.

    KM my credentials are 20+ years in Health Care. 4 years of continuing education in cannabis studies with various PhD & a whole lot of book reading. Reina who Miranda also made comments regarding is a Center for Equality Board Member, Youth Suicide Prevention Coordinator for DSS & she works with LGBT youth and has for years. We are not some pop up pot head group. Our board consistes of a few physicians, nurses, former law enforcement, pharmacists, advocates and SD business owners. We are here to educate and help our state transition into safe, reasonable & regulated access.

    1. KM

      Mentele – So you are a doctor? A nurse? A pharmacist? What is a various PhD? I read too, doesn’t make me an expert. I have worked in my field for over ten years, still doesn’t make me an expert. It’s easy to get on a board, have you seen who is on our SF Parks & Rec board? You sure come across as a pop up pot head group. The comments on the NASD FB page have a lot of ppl commenting that they just want to get high, not wait around for their dealer to deliver and be released of all consequences. I know a cpl ppl that have commented and they’re pot heads, doesn’t help your cause. My biggest concern (same w/alcohol) is what happens when someone gets in their car high, not paying attention, and runs over my kid on their bike?

  16. Pat Powers Post author

    Melissa – Trust me, as a public figure acting as spokesperson for a ballot measure, I don’t think someone disagreeing with you on-line about your desire to legalize pot is going to meet the definition of stalking.

    To try to assert that someone disagreeing, challenging or even trolling you is silly, otherwise there’s a couple of people whom I would have reported myself. It comes with the turf.

    If you’re putting yourself out there representing a cause, and someone decides to disagree each and every time you post, that’s called free speech. If they threatened your well being? That’s a different matter.

    That being said, for yourself, and other commenters, if you’re going to comment here, I ask that you at least make an attempt at civility. Threats don’t win anyone anything except being banned.

  17. Mentele

    Her comments and online trolling has went above and beyond anything reasonablely related to this discussion Pat. I have been trolled by many during these past 3 years BUT there comes a time when it crosses the line. The line has been crossed. I do apologize it had to be here if banning me is the solution I encourage it.

    1. Pat Powers Post author

      I’ve only ever had to ban a few people, and I prefer not to.

      I’m warning everyone before I have to be the censor.

  18. Mentele

    KM-I do apologize your questions got lost in the shuffle as I was driving. My car isn’t the best at picking up voice to text, I don’t have various PhD’s the people who teach the cannabis education do and there are several really great programs out there for patients, advocates, Physicians & several conferences are held yearly for Health Care workers. If you are interested please email me for more info at: 605Compassion@gmail.com

    I share your same concerns regarding the driving while intoxicated. I will always maintain that the most dangerous drivers are the drunk and distracted BUT there is also a danger of people using cannabis and driving. We left in penalties for DUI in regards to cannabis and can only hope people will make good choices. There will be those who do not and the court systems are free to deal with them under SD DUI statutes.

    The comments you mentioned above I do request you send me screen shots at the above email address. Our page is moderated by several people and we discuss issues when they come up. This is not an issue we have seen. I would like to see what see.

    1. KM

      Mentele – Do you share the same concerns regarding driving while intoxicated? Your first sentence states you are driving while looking at my comments; that is distracted driving. From the research I have done, legalizing MJ for recreational use brings serious troubles to communities that I don’t want to see happen in mine. As the case in Durango, CO businesses are now dealing with loitering, theft, violence and panhandling. I don’t want that for downtown SF, we bring our kids there. A quick Google search links to a NYT piece concerning deaths taking place bc of MJ legalization. Do you warn ppl of these issues when asking for signatures? I don’t believe you share the same concerns.

      Again, I know ppl who have commented on the FB page and they are straight up pot heads. As you state the page is moderated, one day a comment, next day it’s gone. People have also been blocked from making comments. You’ve got your agenda and I’ve got mine, they are very different. Mine is for the safety & success of my children and keeping our community prospering.

      1. Anonymous

        Everyone has a right to an opinion and an agenda. If yous is the safety and success of your children and keeping communities prosperous, there is no reason to stop at marijuana. I’ve been on both the prosecution and defense side of the legal isle. Methamphetamine and opioids are by far the most destructive. However, from my perspective, marijuana doesn’t come in third. Alcohol takes that spot by a wide margin. If you’re truly concerned about the safety of a community, work to prohibit alcohol.

        I personally know many people in the professional community, mainly doctors and lawyers, some of whom are friends and colleagues, that every so often recreationally use marijuana. And guess what, they’re great doctors, attorneys, fathers, mothers, husbands, and wives. Some of the kindest, loving, and open hearted people I know. But you don’t see that side of recreational marijuana use because it has to be secluded behind closed doors due to the heavily negative stigma it has surrounding it.

        What you do see are the people who are, statistically, arrested for something else and have a small amount of marijuana on them. Their primary crime (not marijuana) is generally something obviously bad. For instance, robbery, drunk driving, or assault. Therefore, that is what the public links marijuana use to. However, I think many people on this site and in the public would be astonished to know just how many outstanding citizens, with absolutely no criminal record, use marijuana on occasion.

        You will never stop marijuana use. Pot heads will always be pot heads. And even if marijuana is legal, they will most likely still be finding themselves on that defense side of the isle for making bad decisions. Just like they would if it were illegal but with an extra misdemeanor on their record.

        Personally, I would like to see law enforcement be able to focus on the truly harmful drugs like methamphetamine and opioids.

        1. KM

          Yes, that’s all fine and dandy…lots of loving & kind ppl smoke pot illegally behind closed doors. And I know about how the opioid crisis is killing more ppl than guns. I would prefer to not add to the struggles of addiction. What you, NASD and Tara (she rarely brings substance to a discussion anyway) continue to dodge, sidestep and avoid is what negative effects come with rec MJ use. Keep up the good work, it helps your cause.

          Give a defense to what is happening in the Durango, CO community.

          Give a defense to the issues Gohn is addressing about rec use in the trans community.

          1. Tara Volesky

            Prohibition doesn’t work for pot, just like it didn’t work for alcohol. Those are just facts. Laws will never stop people from smoking pot.

        2. Miranda Gohn

          I have no doubt some people can use MJ responsibly but we first have to address the messaging put out by the MJ industry, those looking to make a fortune or have some financial ties to the MJ industry and the culture. None of that is being addressed by Melissa Mentele or NASD. They scrub their facebook page to eliminate any posts when potheads mention getting “Blazed” and “High” which fits into their marketing of all these empty promises and ZERO negatives.

          Prior and after my transition all my friends were/are health oriented and highly functioning. Our fun came from pushing each other to get a better time or personal goal in a Triathlon, bicycle race, running or perform better at trick skiing or whatever also just encouraging and supporting each other to be better persons, parents or whatever. Some people out have different goals in life such as looking for different ways to get high or cannot wait until their next high or cannot function without being high. We know them, worked with them, fired them, cost us money in our businesses or later read where their chemical dependency due to being under the influence of MJ got them into trouble with the law. We usually try to keep a safe distance so their chaos does not get into our own personal lives.

          It is not just the Transgender community where I have seen it but ANY vulnerable group including those who have been sexually abused or individuals caught up in generational dysfunction and chemical abuse. I have been around the block at my age and have experienced more than some and less than others to call out baloney when I see it.

          We have to deal with this another way! Otherwise we are not helping these people and that includes holding them accountable including helping our probation officers while showing them a different path along with an education on cutting thru the Baloney of responsible and safe use of MJ if South Dakotans decides to eventually legalize. Otherwise it will only get worse in the long term and cost us more as a society. Access to mental health resources needs to be addressed.

      2. Miranda Gohn


        Melissa Mentele seemed unaware that once you run for public office or are the leader and promoter of a ballot initiative that affects not only the state of South Dakota but our neighboring states that leaves her, NASD and the initiative open to criticism by those who question and oppose it. Hopefully by today she was able to get educated since I maintain my same position and arguments..

        Looks like she did not answer your questions. She was asked the last time their group tried to do a petition about providing a list of who was funding their efforts and she was evasive as if it were some game rather than just being open and transparent. That type of behavior does not give a very good impression of their organization’s efforts or sincerity.

        1. KM

          Miranda – It is clear they will not answer the questions. The NASD is avoiding that for a reason, I presume they don’t have well developed answers, bc there are none. Communities are getting hit pretty hard once MJ is legalized for rec use.

          I too know the Facebook page is scrubbed, there are several ppl moderating. It will continue to be wiped of all comments that elude to getting blazed.

          Again, your input is important & I hope you continue to challenge them. I’m anxiously awaiting what the judge decides about how the petition is written.

          1. Miranda Gohn

            Hey KM,

            Thank you! I hope some type of organization is formed to stop this or maybe there is one that I am unaware of here in South Dakota. Many people I have talked to that have seen over the years what is really going on that NASD wants swept under the rug are very upset over this. A mother who is a business owner in Mitchell who is about a year older than I has two sons still in HS and she has seen what it has done to one of them. She can tell when he is smoking MJ because his grades fall and he becomes depressed, socially withdrawn and irritable when normally he is very outgoing and a very bright kid. It affects some people differently but those brains are still forming in kids and can change things there. She is totally against any type of legalization but will not speak out for fear of repercussions.

            Thank you for helping! We need to spread the word.

  19. Miranda Gohn


    You may wish to read about this tragedy in Meeker County Minnesota which is a little over an hour west of downtown Minneapolis on Hwy 12. He just plead guilty and sentencing is in Sept. It hit the community pretty hard. The father was so caught up in his own consumption and selling of MJ that he was inattentive to his own children that had been dealing with their own issues and pain for some time. I’ll post the link but in a quick search there are other news stories in the Litchfield Independent Review you can read about this case.

    “Father of teens killed in murder-suicide pleads guilty” http://www.crowrivermedia.com/independentreview/news/father-of-teens-killed-in-murder-suicide-pleads-guilty/article_eb708f5e-f37c-55e9-9f81-9da8bdb5fabd.html

    When he already knew they had their own struggles he encouraged one or both of them to use MJ. He told them not to say anything to the psychologist about anything MJ related. These kids never were able to get the help and support they needed at home and it just got worse with eventually the son coming home shooting his sister, another dog and then turning the gun on himself. It was obviously dysfunctional.

    NASD or any of the pro-pot advocates will never mention it, blow it off as just an isolated case or part of a manufactured conspiracy by the police, prison, pharmaceutical or addiction treatment industrial complex. They will go back to the pitch that it is a benign herb, less harmful than alcohol, harmless, God’s plant, and it is good for you, will cure anything that ails you and will solve all of our financial problems with all that revenue.

    1. KM

      Gohn – What a tragic situation. When I mentioned my child getting hit by a driver high on MJ, MM replied by reminding me there are consequences for ppl who would abuse the law. Well, that may be true, but those consequences wouldn’t bring back my child. NASD will continue to avoid the negative effects at all costs.

      I came across a great article on National Review, it’s worth the read.