Angie Theycall Mehippie’s Rant:
First of all “we” (pro-legalizers and those who believe police resources should be used for better things) do not claim that the police are picking on cannabis consumers over the more dangerous drug alcohol and its consumers, we compare them. There’s a huge difference in doing comparisons than accusing. This is not to mention the cash incentives that police receive when they find cannabis or cannabis related items on or near a person enough that they can press charges! It doesn’t pay to catch a drunk driver or a murderer, etc. We do say that because it is true. Do the research yourself and find out. To be equally fair here in my words and assessment of this article and views of the author we do state in our rebuttals, as I am doing now, that police in every state and county set up checkpoints to catch both drunk drivers and cannabis consumers (or those they think are cannabis consumers or “holders” – the drug dogs are only around 40-48% accurate!). They catch them equally at checkpoints (which I think are unlawful and a violation of the 4th Amendment) but do receive those cash incentives for cannabis users. Make up your own mind if some police officers would be biased toward cannabis users or not.
The author correctly points out that the laws and law enforcement for those who buy alcohol under 21 and those who buy it for people under 21 are very harshly punished as they should be. The thing is drug dealers don’t I.D. Any illegal drug is easier to get than a controlled one such as alcohol so if you really want it out of kid’s hands then control and tax it! This is common sense.
I, myself, and other pro-legalization people do take up for the police on the fact that they do not make the laws and will be fired for not enforcing them or for speaking out against the laws such as the Arizona man involved in law enforcement who was recently fired for proclaiming his views on cannabis legalization and signing a petition for it. (See LEAP Action Alert in this blog.) If I were against the police for doing their job, why would I post (and other pro-legalization people) a petition to get him his job back? Again, common sense. We are not against the police doing their jobs!
The author states that California is for medical marijuana only and that they have made that clear. I assume he’s speaking of Prop 19 which only failed by a narrow margin and if the public was a little more informed Prop 19 would have passed and there are facts to show the reasons for the failures. Look that up yourself, also, to confirm my point here. The vote percentage was a win even though it didn’t pass making it the highest support rate in the country in history and that support is growing widely not only in California but across the country since Prop 19 in November of 2010. The author kindly forgets or omits to point this little factoid out.
2,300 marijuana plants for medical use only – Well, if it was for a collective then I can see that number being needed if it is a large enough collective. However, if no collective existed, then it probably wasn’t medical. Still that does not change the fact that a growing majority of Americans and people of the world are seeing the lies and deception behind the War on Drugs and that growing majority are wanting the DEA and law enforcement to leave peaceful cannabis consumers alone. It does not change the facts versus the lies of “Refer Madness”, either. Now that the truth is stepping into light through science “some folks” actually have a receptive mind to that and care enough to speak out.
Police are spending their limited resources, period. No matter what the branch or division of law enforcement from the DEA to local law enforcement the resources are strained at best across the board. This is not only in the case of cannabis arrests and raids. The limited resources are felt and seen throughout the whole of law enforcement in a strapped economy. That is a fact. No words can erase that fact as the facts about cannabis are coming to light and can no longer be erased or ignored.
I can see why these citizens are irate! Copper pipe? Really? Here is another factoid. While the legal process is ongoing with a cannabis case pending with time limits upon prosecution, rape kits and other vital forensics are set back in the lab for a very long time period. It is long enough that some victims have to wait from 1-5 years to get their rape kit tested and the person found guilty or not guilty for rape. The cash incentives for the police officers performing their duty on cannabis growers is not present for that rape suspect. Am I making a point yet? Rhetorical question, just as unnecessary as the time spent in this copper pipe stake out in my opinion. Alright, I would agree that the copper pipe stake out was a massive waste of time and resources in comparison to my little question. Not to mention the lives of the people involved are forever ruined because of a “drug record” they will incur for the span of their life. Even murderers have a chance of clearing their police record. I’ve seen habitual thieves clear their record with some community service. Lives are ruined with an arrest for cannabis, this does not include any prison time!
We’re living in a world now that begs the question what makes sense and what doesn’t? I’m not sure about you but copper thieves doesn’t scare me. They could be costly but not as costly as a legal record for drug use, possession, or distribution. In the United States it is still possible to get the death penalty for cannabis. It is on the books still and one man recently found that out because he was sentenced to death for it according to MSNBC. (I am still looking for that news clip to post.) My point is copper thieves, while bad and damaging, are not nearly as damaging as our laws against cannabis users and growers who would otherwise be peaceful, law-abiding citizens.
Copper theft is not a victimless crime, the author writes, and I would agree. Cannabis in all the “crime” formats that laws dictate is not a victimless crime, either, but the victim is usually the one arrested. It is true that major growers in an illegal market have guns and do kill people but this can be remedied as can the harsh penalties for life through one arrest by making cannabis legal for everyone to enjoy whether recreationally or medically.
Budget cuts – the author mentions this. What he does not see is the fact he just contradicted himself in saying that the police force didn’t use limited resources. The budget cuts he mentions says that they did and that the resources of police are very much limited.
“Second guessing police is a full-time vocation for some folks.” This statement is undoubtedly the opinion of the author because I haven’t found any paying job or volunteers that work full-time just to second guess police at all. If you find one, show me. If I am to take the sentence in context with the definitions of the words used, that is. I find this to be a blatant overstatement and one to mislead the public into thinking another lie in a feeble attempt to discredit the work of the people trying to get legislation passed for legalization or even medical cannabis. It is not working with most of the people of America. The sooner this author realizes this the better off we all will be. Most pro-legalization groups are supporting and working with both legislators (state and federal) and police officers and law enforcement in general. As for the police officers in particular we are striking up conversations. They, too, are speaking out against the Drug War at their own peril. This fact should wake a lot of people up. Those that cannot speak out now, we hope they will one day, for or against what legalization is aiming to do.
Cannabis users and growers want to be law-abiding citizens and would otherwise be that if it were not for laws propped up by propaganda (hence the name “prop”aganda) that are nothing but lies told to the people to gain our support. It is my faith in the intelligence of the American people and people of the world that they see through misleading statements such as in this article.