Portland NORML News - Friday, March 20, 1998

Stop The Marijuana Task Force, Week Three
(American Antiprohibition League In Portland Will Continue To Sponsor
Weekly Demonstrations Against The Marijuana Task Force
And Its 'Knock And Talk' Policies 4-6 PM Fridays
Outside The Downtown Justice Center - Supporters Include US Senate Candidate,
Newspaper, Attorneys)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 01:25:41 -0800 (PST)
From: Anti-Prohibition Lg (aal@inetarena.com)
To: Mayor Vera Katz (mayorkatz@ci.portland.or.us)
cc: Portland Police -- CW Jensen (OfficerJensen@kgw.com),
PPB (police@teleport.com)
Subject: Stop the MTF, week 3



Drug War, or Drug Peace?


As of Friday, March 20, 1998

Stop the Marijuana Task Force, week 3

Portland, Oregon -- Again the League and Portland NORML will stage a
non-violent protest and speak-out against the Police Bureau's infamous
Marijuana Task Force (MTF). These actions have been keyed to a
proposal to Mayor Katz to suspend and review the need for such a task
force. We are very concerned for police officer and public safety and
consider the MTF a threat to both.

This week's protest will be broadcast on local cable access, Friday,
8p.m. on channel 11. There will be human rights and Portland Cop Watch
observers, with cameras, posted around the event.


(1120 S.W. 3rd., downtown Portland, Oregon)



"We, the undersigned respectfully request Portland Mayor Vera Katz
immediately suspend operation of the Marijuana Task Force (MTF) for a
period of not less than 3 months. During which time testimony from
citizens affected by the MTF will be heard. Also during such time
objective (independent) analysis concerning the MTF will be sought and
reviewed in conjunction with the aforementioned testimonies. After
that, a determination made as to the risk vs. benefit of the MTF in the
context of overall policing priorities."

Endorsements this week

Lee Berger, local attorney
James Brewester (Eugene) Libertarian candidate for U.S. Senate
Cannabis Liberation Society (Eugene)
Lewis & Clark College Hemp Club
N.O.R.M.L., Portland/Vancouver chapters
Pacific Party, Portland chapter
PDX/s newspaper
Paul Loney, local attorney
Radical Women

MAMA Is Coming To Your Community (Sandee Burbank,
Founder And Director Of Mothers Against Misuse And Abuse,
A Widely Praised Drug Education Program, Is Planning A Series
Of Community Presentations Around Oregon From April 20 Through May 9 -
Now Is The Time To Arrange For A Presentation In Your Town)

From: "sburbank" (sburbank@orednet.org)
To: "Phil Smith" (pdxnorml@pdxnorml.org),
Subject: MAMA is coming to your community
Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 08:43:50 -0800

This is to inform everyone that I will be doing a 3-week tour of Oregon
promoting MAMA's approach. It will start April 20th and end in Portland
with a big event on May 9th (the day before Mother's Day) called " Mother's
Day Plea for Drug Sanity". I'm not sure where yet, we're working on it.

We will be holding community presentations with a computer generated show
especially created for the tour. We will also be meeting with the media and
groups and individuals interested in our approach which is based on
personal responsibility and informed decision making, with respect for
human dignity. This is a great alternative to the ineffective 'just say
no' programs out there.

We will be asking many women, especially older women, as speakers. My list
to ask include Barbara Roberts, Jo Anne Bowman, Kate Brown, Avel Gordly,
and others. Any suggestions? I will be encouraging all the women I know
to come to this event and bring their families. That doesn't mean I'm
excluding men, in fact I am soliciting everyone's help, but want the focus
to be on the mothers, grandmothers and the family. We will be discussing
the harm from ALL drugs and how drug policy increases that harm.

We will be doing Eastern Oregon April 20-25th ( Hood River to Ontario to
Klamath Falls to Bend and back to The Dalles). We will start in Astoria on
the 27th and go south that week, crossing to Roseburg at the end of the
week. The last week will start in Ashland and end in Portland on May 9th.
I will be posting a more detailed agenda as soon as the arrangements are
made. We will be in YOUR COMMUNITY and we could sure use your help.

Also, I need to find some contacts on the coast. I have a good network
elsewhere in the state, but the folks who used to help me on the coast have
all moved! Of course I can set up meetings and appointments with the media
myself, but it is always nice to have at least one person in town who we

Please contact me if you want to help or if you know someone who might.


FBI Widens Its Probe Of Violence At Prisons ('Orange County Register'
Says Federal Bureau Of Investigation Will Look Into Whether California Guards
Violated Inmates' Civil Rights During A Melee Last Month
At High Desert Prison That Left One Prisoner Dead, And Whether Guards
At Pelican Bay Prison Encouraged Fights Between Inmates)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:08:01 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US CA: FBI Widens its Probe of Violence at Prisons
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: John W.Black
Source: Orange County Register (CA)
Contact: letters@link.freedom.com
Website: http://www.ocregister.com/
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998


The FBI is broadening its investigation into violence in California's
prisons to include two more high-security facilities, including one where
guards allegedly urged inmates to attack each other.

Thursday's announcement came a day after eight correctional officers at
Corcoran State Prison, near Fresno, pleaded innocent in federal court of
staging gladiator-type fights between inmates of rival gangs.

The FBI said it is also looking into a melee last month at High Desert
prison that left one inmate dead and allegations that guards at Pelican Bay
prison encouraged fights between inmates.

The three high-security prisons house some of the state's most violent
prisoners. Inmates involved in violence at other prisons are sent to
Pelican Bay, in the far northwestern part of the state. High Desert, in the
far northeastern corner of the state, is one of California's newest prisons
and already one of the most violent.

Corcoran Conundrum - Why Is Corrections Paying Prison Guards' Legal Fees?
(Reprint Of 'Sacramento Bee' Staff Editorial In Bend, Oregon, 'Bulletin,'
About Alleged Brutality At California Prison)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:06:32 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US OR: Editorial: Corcoran Conundrum:
Why is Corrections Paying Prison Guards' Legal Fees?
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Nora Callahan 
Source: Bulletin, The (OR)
Contact: bulletin@bendbulletin.com
Website: http://www.bendbulletin.com
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
The Bulletin writes: "This article is from the Sacramento Bee, a newspaper
in the California state Capital"


The decision by the California Department of Corrections to pay the legal
fees of the eight prison guards accused by the U.S. Attorney of staging
inmate fights at the state prison at Corcoran is highly unusual. In fact,
the chief lawyer for the department says she could find no evidence that
it's ever been done before by the department.

Unusual doesn't necessarily mean wrong -- but it does mean the state has
aligned itself with employees accused of serious crimes. If those
employees are found guilty, the department's credibility would be

The decision to pay legal fees was made by Corrections Department Director
C.A. Terhune with the backing, one assumes, of the Wilson administration.
It comes in the wake of an explosive accusation made by James Maddox,
special agent in charge of the FBI office in Sacramento, who said unnamed
correctional officers and department officials were involved in
"intentional efforts ... to stymie, delay and obstruct [the federal]
inquiry." That accusation, sharply disputed by the department and never
fully explained by Maddox, is now coupled with the department's
eyebrow-raising decision to pay private lawyers to defend prison guards
charged with crimes. That raises obvious questions. Is there a conspiracy
to cover up misconduct at Corcoran? Has it reached the highest levels of
the department?

In fairness both to the officers charged and to the department, Terhune
offers a plausible explanation for his actions. After reviewing the
evidence, Terhune says he believes "these officers acted appropriately."
He points out correctly that correctional officers who guard 156,000 felons
incarcerated in California prisons must make life and death decisions
daily. Terhune fears, reasonably, that guards will be reluctant to use
necessary force -- lethal force, when appropriate -- to protect life if
they fear the department won't back them. "It's important for staff to
know that the department will stand behind them when they do their jobs
correctly," Terhune says.

That's true, but it's equally important for the public to know that the
department will not participate in, tolerate or cover up wrongdoing by its
officers. Department lawyers concede they don't have all the evidence made
available to the federal prosecutors through the grand jury proceedings.
The department has reserved the right to withdraw from the case -- that is,
to stop paying legal bills of accused officers -- if evidence surfaces that
convinces them that crimes have been committed. The department has also
promised to continue to cooperate with federal prosecutors investigating
crimes at Corcoran. It's imperative the department follow through on its

More than the eight accused officers is on trial here, the integrity of the
Department of Corrections is also on the line. Is anyone in the
Legislature paying attention?

Two Held In Sale Of Marijuana To Costa Mesa Boy
('Orange County Register' Doesn't Say How Police Detectives
Caught A California Man Selling Marijuana To A 14-Year-Old Inside A Car)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:08:35 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US CA: 2 Held in Sale of Marijuana to Costa Mesa Boy
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: John W.Black
Source: Orange County Register (CA)
Contact: letters@link.freedom.com
Website: http://www.ocregister.com/
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
Author: Stephen Wall-Orange County Register


The men had cocaine, marijuana and steroids in their residence, police say.

COSTA MESA-Two men have been arrested on suspicion of supplying drugs to a
high school student, police said.

Roommates Scott Lamborn, 31, and James Richard Quayle, 27, were taken to
the Cost Mesa city jail Wednesday about 7 p.m. after detectives caught
Lamborn selling marijuana to a 14-year-old Cost Mesa High School student,
said police Lt. Ron Smith.

The student, whose name was not released, was picked up by Lamborn at a gas
station at Fair Drive and Fairview Road and driven to a parking lot in the
Orange County Fairgrounds at Fair Drive and Vanguard Way about 6:30 p.m.,
Smith said.

Lamborn allegedly sold the boy marijuana with a street value of $20, enough
to make about 10 joints, police said.

After arresting Lamborn on charges of sale of narcotics to a minor, police
obtained a search warrant for the suspects' residence in the 300 block of
Santa Isabel Avenue in Cost Mesa.

Inside the home, police found one ounce of cocaine, four ounces of
high-grade marijuana, steroids and about $5,500 in cash, Smith said. Quayle
was arrested on suspicion of possessing and transporting marijuana, cocaine
and steroids. Lamborn was arrested on the same charges, plus the sale of

Both suspects are in custody and will be arraigned today at Harbor
Municipal Court.

FACTS Storms State Democratic Convention (News Release From Families To Amend
California's Three Strikes Says FACTS Made A Strong Presence
At California's State Democratic Convention In Downtown Los Angeles,
Receiving Endorsements From The African American Caucus, Children's Caucus,
Disabilities Caucus, And The Arab American Caucus)

Date: Tue, 24 Mar 1998 00:55:59 -0800 (PST)
From: Randy Chase 
To: hemp-talk@hemp.net
Subject: HT: California State Democratic Convention (fwd)
Sender: owner-hemp-talk@hemp.net
Randy Chase
Temp Home # 206-621-2015
Seattle, WA
Froglist Host
--- Forwarded message ---
Date: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 10:57:35 EST
From: "Douglas W. Kieso" 
To: Multiple recipients of list 
Subject: California State Democratic Convention


FACTS Storms State Democratic Convention

On the evening of March 20th, over 30 members of Families to Amend
California's Three Strikes made a strong presence at California's State
Democratic Convention in downtown Los Angeles.

Members of FACTS leafleted throughout the night and spoke at many
of the numerous caucus meetings. Many people, including a
representative of Vice President Al Gore (who is scheduled to make
an appearance on March 21st) expressed an interest in learning more
from FACTS about the realities of the 3-Strike law.

FACTS formally received endorsements for SB2048 from the African
American caucus, Children's caucus, Disabilities caucus, and the Arab
American caucus. Many of the other caucuses indicated that they did
not have time to act on the resolution that evening (as candidates for
governor and other offices continuously streamed into caucus
meetings to give speeches), but would try to bring up the matter at
their next meeting.

Among the highlights of the evening was when Senator Bill Lockyer (who is
running for state's attorney general) walked by the hallway where many
FACTS members were gathered. He was asked by Tim Carpenter to tell the
family members of 3-Strikers why he voted against SB1317 last year. A New
York Times reporter, who was following Lockyer at the time, then also asked
the Senator the same question. Lockyer, looking very displeased by the
whole matter, could only respond with what sounded like grunting noises and
promptly walked away.

Locke Signs Bills On Meth Labs And Sex Offenders
('Associated Press' Says Washington Governor Gary Locke
Today Signed A Bill Increasing Penalties For Methamphetamine Producers,
Although He Declined For The Second Year In A Row To Make The Crime
A 'Three Strikes' Offense - Washington State Patrol
Investigated 102 Meth Labs In 1996 And Seized 50,000 Grams Of The Drug,
Up From 26 Labs And 3,000 Grams Seized In 1991)

From: "W.H.E.N." 
To: "-Hemp Talk" 
Subject: HT: Locke signs bills on meth labs and sex offenders
Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:01:18 -0800
Sender: owner-hemp-talk@hemp.net

The Associated Press
03/20/98 9:34 PM Eastern

OLYMPIA (AP) -- Gov. Gary Locke on Friday signed three bills designed to
crack down on people who operate methamphetamine labs, although he declined
for the second year in a row to make the crime a "strike."

The measures were among 40 bills signed Friday by the governor. Other
measures dealt with sex offenders, student regents on university boards,
outdoor burning bans and pregnant women who use illegal drugs.

The drug bills are aimed at curbing a growing number of meth labs in
Washington. In 1996, the Washington State Patrol investigated 102 meth labs
and seized 50,000 grams of the drug, up from 26 labs and 3,000 grams seized
in 1991.

Locke signed House Bill 2628, which increases the standard sentencing range
for manufacturing methamphetamine from two years to about five years for
the first offense. The maximum penalty will jump from 12 years to 16 years.

He also signed Senate Bill 6139, which increases sentences for making or
selling amphetamine, which is produced by a meth lab that didn't get the
chemical reaction the operator intended.

But Locke only signed part of HB2791, which allows local governments to use
money from their toxics control accounts for assessment and cleanup of meth
lab sites. The chemical combinations used in the manufacture of
methamphetamine are highly toxic and the costs of cleanup can be a
significant and unexpected burden on a community.

The governor vetoed a provision that would have made the operation of a
meth lab a "strike" under the "three strikes, you're out" law that requires
a life sentence after a conviction for a third violent crime.

Locke, who vetoed a similar measure last year, repeated his contention that
the three-strikes law should be reserved for violent crimes, such as

"The `three strikes, you're out' law has been effective in permanently
putting the most dangerous criminals behind bars, but applying it to new
crimes every year, as if it were the cure-all for every crime in society,
could jeopardize the `three strikes law,' " Locke said.

The governor also signed two bills dealing with sex offenders.

HB2350 requires the Washington State Patrol to make information about sex
offenders available to all law enforcement agencies in the state. Under the
current system, counties maintain their own records, but there is no
statewide system that allows law enforcers to make a quick check on a sex
offender who may have traveled to a different county.

HB2707 prohibits prison inmates convicted of sex crimes from participating
in work programs that provide access to names, addresses and telephone
numbers of the general public. The bill was sparked by an incident last
year in which several women who called a toll-free number for the state
parks system were later contacted by inmates who were working for the

The Department of Corrections discontinued the program and reassigned its
supervisor when the problem was disclosed.

Other bills signed Friday included:

--HB3103, which requires the state Department of Health to develop a
screening program to use in identifying women who are at risk of conceiving
drug-addicted babies.

--HB2414, which requires cities with a population of at least 5,000 to
prohibit all outdoor burning after Dec. 31, 2000. Smaller cities that are
not located near areas with high concentrations of air pollution have until
Dec. 31, 2006, to eliminate outdoor burning.

--SB5499, which increases penalties for assaulting school and transit bus
drivers. The new law eliminates a loophole in current law requiring that at
least one passenger be on board in order to seek a felony charge against
someone who assaults a bus driver.

--SB5517, which authorizes the governor to place a student on each
four-year college board of trustees or regents.

Locke has signed 100 bills so far, and has 275 left that must be acted upon
by April 4, including the state budget and packages of legislation dealing
with drunken driving and preserving salmon runs.

Seattle City Attorney Responds To 'Seattle Times' Columnist
(He Says Michelle Malkin's Column About Police Betraying The Owner
Of Oscar's II Tavern With A 'Drug-Abatement Action'
Doesn't Tell The Full Story)

owner-hemp-talk@hemp.net using -f
Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 15:59:28 -0800 (PST)
To: hemp-talk@hemp.net
From: Kelley 
Sender: owner-hemp-talk@hemp.net

Received this from the city's attorney for my letter re: Oscar's abatement

PEACE Kelley Decker

Attachment Converted: C:\INTERNET\EUDORA\OSCARMA1.doc


March 20, 1998

Special to the Times
Seattle Police Chief Norm Stamper
City Attorney Mark Sidran

Michelle Malkin's recent editorial column (3/17/98) regarding the City's
drug abatement action to close Oscar's II Tavern presents a moving portrait
of a business owner struggling against a plague of crime and drugs who,
despite his best efforts is nonetheless shut down by the City, leaving him
wondering "Why?" Any fair-minded, thoughtful review of the evidence would
provide a simple answer; after years of drug trafficking and related crime
at Oscar's and many efforts by the police and the community to stop it and
help the owner establish control, he did not do all he could and should have
and the drug trafficking and violence continued.

A fundamental premise of our laws is that property owners are responsible
for the consequences of what they permit on their property. When a business
breeds crime and the crime harms the neighbors and threatens public safety,
it is not just the owner's efforts that count, it is results. And contrary
to Ms. Malkin's view, there is overwhelming evidence that both the efforts
by Oscar McCoy and the results fell far short of what the community has a
right to expect from any business.

In the past five years Oscar's has generated 324 calls to 911 for everything
from drugs to shootings. The police have repeatedly offered suggestions to
the owner on prevention strategies, including a two page, 15-step "drug
elimination plan" (DEP) provided in 1994. Did the owner follow through on
these suggestions? Listen to what the State Liquor Control Boar had to say
following a hearing to suspend Oscar's liquor license in 1997: "Mr. McCoy
failed to make a serious effort to comply with the DEP. He did comply with
some of the steps...but failed to follow through with many portions of the
plan." The Board found he did not install a video surveillance camera (even
an inexpensive "dummy" camera would have complied with the directive). He
did not lock the rest rooms and allow only one person in at a time. He did
not remove the pay phone. He did not charge a re-admittance cover charge or
prohibit "in-and-out" privileges if customers left. He did not install an
alarmed "exit only" on the back door to control coming and going. All these
steps help make drug trafficking more difficult, but as Mr. McCoy testified
he didn't follow through because he started to lose money when he did.

Ms. Malkin states not a single arrest resulted from 18 "controlled drug
buys" set up by police using "shady informants." The purpose of such buys
is to gather intelligence not to make arrests (which would "blow" the
informant's cover). The police department also takes steps to assure the
reliability of informants. More importantly, there were 11 felony drug
arrests at Oscar's between 1995 and 1997. The drug dealing inside Oscar's
was open and obvious, including evidence that the bartender made change for
buyers and sellers. Responding to the owner's claim that he had no
knowledge of the drug dealing the Liquor Board found, "This denial is simply
not credible."

When the Liquor Board closed Oscar's because of the drug dealing and then
allowed it to reopen 30 days later, the drug dealing immediately resumed
even though Mr. McCoy had been told by both the police and liquor agents
that his door person and bartender were suspected of being involved. The
Board found that Mr. McCoy "did nothing to investigate the situation" and
his liquor license was again suspended.

Ms. Malkin suggests that McCoy "diligently" followed suggestions regarding
improving security, including hiring guards and using metal detectors. But
the "guards" were untrained, the "head of security" had a long string of
felony convictions and the metal detectors went largely unused. The Liquor
Board found, "[S]ecurity does not make a good faith effort to check
customers for weapons," and generally did a "poor job." So poor, in fact,
that on August 9, 1997 three men were shot inside the bathroom at Oscar's,
the bathroom McCoy declined to lock and limit to one person at a time. At
least two guns were recovered. The Liquor Board found, "Based upon numerous
observations of inadequate security procedure, it is more likely than not
that the weapons gained entry due to the negligence of security staff."

The Liquor Board concluded that, "All of the...facts lead to the conclusion
that Mr. McCoy was in fact 'looking the other way' at criminal activity, and
knowingly allowing narcotics activity at Oscar's II." This Liquor Board
action was not initiated by the Seattle Police nor did the City Attorney's
Office participate in it. But based very much on the same evidence and
concerns that motivated the Liquor Board to suspend Oscar's liquor license,
we began a drug abatement in court to close the business.

We are committed to doing all that we can to help responsible,
well-intentioned business people succeed in preventing crime in and around
their premises. Abatement is a drastic measure that is considered as a last
resort when sincere and concerted efforts to solve a problem are ignored or
otherwise do not succeed. The police have an important role to play, but
cannot do it alone. Certainly our job should not be made harder by
irresponsible business owners, nor should we allow limited police resources
to be excessively consumed by those who are contributing to the problem
instead of helping to solve it.


[Link to Malkin's Response]


No Illegal Needle Exchanges (Staff Editorial In 'Rocky Mountain News'
Criticizes Vow By Needle Exchange Activists
To Carry On Despite Ignorant Vote By Colorado Legislators)

Date: Fri, 27 Mar 1998 12:19:17 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: Olafur Brentmar 
Subject: MN: US CO: Editorial: No Illegal Needle Exchanges
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: PERSDEN 
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
Source: Rocky Mountain News (CO)
Contact: letters@denver-rmn.com
Website: http://insidedenver.com/news/


THE ISSUE: Legislature won't approve needle exchanges

OUR VIEW: Advocates should continue abiding by the law

Advocates of needle-exchange programs seem to believe that they are the
exclusive possessors of the moral high ground. After a House committee last
week voted against changing state law that now forbids possessing drug
paraphernalia, Paul Simons of the HIV-prevention group PEERS (People
Engaged in Education and Reduction Strategies) called for a campaign of
civil disobedience.

"One way or another, we will have a needle-exchange program by the end of
the year," Simons said. "If we can't do it through quiet, rational
dialogue, then we will do it through civil disobedience."

He has every right to try, but civil disobedience as a tool of moral
suasion succeeds only when it can persuade large numbers of people that the
law being protested is unjust. It seldom works when support for the law
grows from equally strong moral principles: in this case, that it is wrong
to facilitate drug use.

Simons and others seem to assume the people who disagree with them are
merely pretending to moral principle, but if so, they are making a serious

In any case, no one is seriously arguing that there is a fundamental right
to provide drug users with hypodermic syringes. In truth, their argument is
an argument from expediency. Drug use will occur whether we wish it or not,
the argument goes, so society should aim merely to minimize the ill effects.

Many people simply do not find this persuasive, knowing as they do that
reducing the negative consequences of bad behavior tends to encourage it.

Even the arguments for expediency are weaker than needle-exchange
advocates acknowledge. Many such programs, though not all, seem to be
successful at reducing disease, but the effect on levels of addiction are
unclear at best. That's because it's relatively easy to identify users of
intravenous drugs, their partners and their children who are infected with
HIV or other diseases through contaminated needles. But there's no way to
identify the non-addicts who never begin to inject drugs because they're
afraid of disease. Whether needle-exchange programs increase the number of
addicts or not, the effect is almost impossible to measure against the
broader patterns of social change that affect drug use.

The arguments were sufficient, however, to persuade the Denver City Council
in December to approve a needle-exchange program with the important proviso
that state law be changed to make it legal before the program could begin.
Denver District Attorney Bill Ritter was among those who testified in favor
of last week's bill, but he and Mayor Wellington Webb have declined to
accept Simon's invitation to join him in civil disobedience.

"The way I view my obligation as prosecutor, I have to enforce the law,"
Ritter said. "I can't select only the ones that I like."

And Webb spokesman Andrew Hudson said the mayor wouldn't back an illegal
operation without Ritter's approval, though his comments suggest the mayor
was leaving himself waffling room.

"If the district attorney were to take another position, we would consider
our options," Hudson said.

We encourage both of them to stand by the laws unless or until the laws are
changes -- and leave the civil disobedience to others.


For more information, call or write:

People Engaged in Education and Reduction Strategies (PEERS) 2701
Alcott St. #263 Denver, CO 80211

Daytona Beating Tied To Pot Deal ('London Free Press' In Ontario
Says A 22-Year-Old Man From Orangeville, Ontario,
Sustained Serious Head Injuries After Trying To Buy Cannabis
From Two Indiana Drifters On The Beach At Daytona, Florida -
After They Beat And Robbed Him, Police Thought He Was Drunk
And Locked Him Up For Nearly 11 Hours)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:24:27 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US: Daytona Beating Tied To Pot Deal
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: creator@mapinc.org
Source: London Free Press (Canada)
Contact: letters@lfpress.com
Website: http://www.canoe.ca/LondonFreePress/home.html
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
Author: Moira MacDonald -- Sun Media Newspapers


Daytona Beach police arrested two Indiana drifters Thursday for the beating
with a brick of an Orangeville man after a failed drug deal.

Zachary Gootee, 20, and Jason Andrew Currens, 25, both of Indianapolis,
Ind., were arrested and charged with armed robbery and aggravated battery.
The charges were laid after last Saturday's assault that has left
22-year-old Billy Jobe in hospital in serious condition with head injuries.
The charges carry a $10,000 release bond for each man.

Police said the robbery and attack happened after Jobe, who had driven to
Florida for a vacation with friends, approached two men on the Daytona
Beach pier just after 11 p.m. and tried to buy marijuana from them.


The men hit Jobe over the head with a brick and stole his wallet. Jobe's
friends said the thugs took $500 US.

This was the result of a drug transaction," said Daytona police
spokesperson Rob Brinkerhoff.

Jobe was found an hour later by a passer-by and taken into custody by
police, who believed he was drunk. Brinkerhoff said Jobe wasn't taken to
hospital until nearly 11 hours later because police didn't notice signs of
trauma until they saw he was bleeding from the ear.

Three Canadians have been killed in Florida since 1992, including Mark
Fyke, a Belleville teenager killed in Daytona Beach two years ago after he
called his mother from a telephone booth.

Two youths charged with Fyke's murder go on trial May 4 in Daytona Beach.

Copyright (c) 1998 The London Free Press a division of Sun Media Corporation.

Paul Harvey And Hemp (Venerable ABC Radio Commentator
Gives A Glowing Report On Industrial Hemp)

From: "sburbank" (sburbank@orednet.org)
To: "Phil Smith" (pdxnorml@pdxnorml.org),
Subject: Paul Harvey & Hemp
Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 12:22:37 -0800


Paul Harvey just gave a glowing report on hemp. He pointed out that
Presidents Washington and Jefferson used it and said many other good
things. He said it was now legal in Canada, but not in the US and that
though farmers could make $500 per acre, we will have to buy it from
Canada, due to our government's infinite wisdom.

Lifting Of Hemp Ban Sought ('Los Angeles Times'
Says The North American Industrial Hemp Council And Other Groups
In The United States Are Preparing To Petition
The Drug Enforcement Administration To Remove Hemp
From The Controlled Substance List)

Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 10:30:48 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US: Lifting of Hemp Ban Sought
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield
Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)
Contact: letters@latimes.com
Fax: 213-237-4712
Website: http://www.latimes.com/
Pubdate: March 20, 1998


WASHINGTON -An effort is underway to get hemp off the controlled substance
list. The strong-fibered plant that can be used in many ways, from
construction material to paper to clothing, doesn't get people stoned
unless they smoke it in massive quantities. But the federal government bans
cultivation of industrial hemp and has it on the controlled list. Several
groups, including the North American Industrial Hemp Council and the
Resource Conservation Alliance, are preparing to petition the Drug
Enforcement Administration to remove it from the list.

Lifting Of Hemp Ban Sought ('Associated Press' Version)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 10:50:20 -0700 (MST)
From: "Colo. Hemp Init. Project" 
To: "Colo. Hemp Init. Project" 
Subject: Petition to reclassify hemp to be filed

3/20/98 Lifting of Hemp Ban Sought


WASHINGTON (AP) - Hemp is not dope.

It will not get people stoned unless smoked in massive quantities and its
strong fibers can be used in 25,000 ways, from construction material to paper
to clothing. It also just might make a few farmers feel a financial high.

But right now, the federal government bans cultivation of industrial hemp and
considers it a controlled substance, no different from its hallucinogenic
cousin marijuana. Several groups, including the North American Industrial Hemp
Council and the Resource Conservation Alliance, want to change that.

They are preparing to petition the Drug Enforcement Administration to drop
hemp from the controlled substance list. They also want the Agriculture
Department to set up a system of certifying hemp seeds and licensing farmers.

``There certainly is a demand for it,'' said Ned Daly, director of the
Resource Conservation Alliance. ``It's a very easy crop to grow. It truly is a

Hemp has a long history in the United States. George Washington and Thomas
Jefferson grew it; the Declaration of Independence was drafted on hemp paper.
During World War II, the federal government mounted a ``Hemp for Victory''
growing campaign for many military uses, including ropes.

Some agricultural economists say farmers today could gross up to $500 an acre
for hemp. Canada legalized it earlier this month after a 60-year ban, in part
because of the income potential for farmers, and several U.S. states are
promoting hemp research.

Hemp and marijuana are both varieties of the cannabis sativa plant. But hemp
typically contains only a tiny fraction of the active ingredient, THC, that
makes pot smokers high.

Still, the DEA and President Clinton's drug control policy director, Barry
McCaffrey, say hemp's legalization could hinder efforts to stamp out

``A serious law enforcement concern is that a potential byproduct of
legalizing hemp production would be de facto legalization of marijuana
cultivation,'' McCaffrey's office said in a statement. ``The seedlings are the
same and in many instances the mature plants look the same.''

Supporters of ending the ban say that is just blowing smoke. They say hemp
plants are far taller than marijuana, are grown much closer together and
typically are not allowed to flower. The flowering produces the buds most
sought after by marijuana growers.

``The dope argument lacks any merit,'' said Hawaii state Rep. Cynthia Thielen,
a Republican who says farmers in her state want hemp as an alternative to
sugar and pineapples. ``You can tell the difference. You're licensing farmers
so you know where the crop is. If someone's growing that isn't licensed, bust

The Agriculture Department, however, questions how profitable hemp might
actually be: it is labor intensive and cheaper alternatives already exist for
many of its uses. For instance, hemp linen costs $15 a square yard, compared
with only $7.50 for flax linen.

``Hemp production in the United States has no demonstrated economic value
potential as a cash crop,'' the McCaffrey statement said.

But proponents are undeterred, noting that Canadian farmers plan to plant
5,000 acres of hemp this spring and farmers in England and Germany have turned
solid profits from it for years.

Some of the more unusual uses for hemp include reinforcement in concrete, as a
replacement for fiberglass in cars, in shoes and even as a cosmetic oil.

Beyond the economic arguments, proponents say hemp is good for field rotations
that help sustain soil and reduce harmful insects.

``While the rest of the world is jumping on the hemp bandwagon, American
agriculture is being held hostage to obsolete thinking,'' said Jeffrey Gain, a
hemp proponent who was former chief of the National Corn Growers Association.
``It's a legitimate crop with enormous economic and environmental potential.''

Treatment Versus Jail (Staff Editorial In 'Orange County Register' Discusses
Two Reports This Week, One Suggesting Treatment For Drug Addiction Works,
And The Other Suggesting The Public Favors Prison Over Treatment,
And Summarizes, 'This Week's News Showed The Dimensions Of The Gap
Between How People Feel And What Actually Might Work')

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:07:49 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US: Editorial: Treatment Vs. Jail
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: John W.Black
Source: Orange County Register (CA)
Contact: letters@link.freedom.com
Website: http://www.ocregister.com/
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998


Two news items this week on handling drugs and addiction illustrate the
paradox of Americans' struggle with the issue: Key experts recommend
treatment, while popular opinion favors tougher laws and punishment.

On Wednesday, the Physician Leadership on National Drug Policy made public
a new research study that makes a strong case that treating drug abuse as a
medical problem and offering treatment is much more cost-effective than
sending people to jail. The group is made up of prominent physicians and
public health leaders who had served in the Clinton, Bush and Reagan

If the goal is really to reduce the number of people who have drug habits
that create a negative impact on themselves and others, the evidence the
group offered is compelling.

On the same day, however, a study of public-opinion surveys conducted over
the last two decades showed that a vast majority of Americans still support
the drug war and few are willing to spend more government money on
medically oriented drug treatment programs. Researchers at the Harvard
School of Public Health found that while about 78 percent of the public has
believed for the last 20 years that current anti-drug strategies have been
a failure, 66 percent say they're willing to pay more in taxes to fight
drug use, and most Americans want that money to go toward jails and cops.
Support for increased government spending on drug treatment dropped from 65
percent in 1990 to 53 percent today.

The bipartisan group of public-health experts noted that it costs $25,900
to put a drug addict in jail for a year, residential drug treatment
programs cost about $6,800 per year and outpatient treatment programs run
$1,800 to 2,500 a year. Good treatment programs are effective for about 50
percent of addicts and reduce subsequent crime and involvement in the
criminal subculture dramatically.

So why doesn't the public want to spend more tax money on drug treatment?
Maybe it's because they're not convinced that having a drug problem
entitles people to medical treatment at the taxpayers' expense.

If they believe the consequences of drug problems should be paid for by
those who have them rather than by the taxpayers at large, of course, they
would also understand that throwing even more money at the problem be
toughening laws and building more jails probably only makes the problem

It all doesn't make a lot of sense, but this week's news showed the
dimensions of the gap between how people feel and what actually might work.

Fall And Recovery Lie Behind New Documentary Television Series
('New York Times' Says Bill Moyers' Upcoming Series On Addiction,
'Close To Home,' Was Inspired By His Son's Experience With Polydrug Abuse)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 22:34:25 -0500
To: DrugSense News Service 
From: Richard Lake 
Subject: MN: US: NYT: Fall And Recovery Lie Behind New Documentary
Television Series
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Dick Evans 
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
Source: The New York Times
Author: Christopher S. Wren
Contact: letters@nytimes.com
Website: http://www.nytimes.com/


NEW YORK -- William C. Moyers was graced by fortune, with good looks, wit
and social privilege inherited from celebrity parents. His father, Bill
Moyers, is one of television's most trusted journalists and a former press
secretary to President Lyndon B. Johnson. His mother, Judith Davidson
Moyers, presides over the family production company, Public Affairs
Television, and juggles an array of corporate boards and trusteeships. But
when their oldest child identifies himself, he says, "I'm a recovering
alcoholic and a drug addict."

William Moyers is likely to use this introduction when he appears Tuesday
before a congressional hearing into substance abuse. "You can't tell who's
going to get hit," said David C. Lewis, a psychiatrist who directs the
Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies at Brown University. "Even with
genetic vulnerability, it's very hard to predict on an individual basis.
You certainly can't predict it based on social status or education. Those
things become predictors of recovery." William Moyers' ordeal helped
motivate Bill Moyers' new documentary series, "Close to Home," which
explores the nature of addiction. "It isn't about me," his son said. "It's
about thousands of people like me. I think my father uses the tool of his
trade to go into areas that he wants to know more about." Still, he added,
"if addiction can hit the Moyers family, then no one is immune."

William Moyers appears only briefly in the television series, which will be
shown on public broadcasting stations beginning March 29. Judith Moyers
said: "We discussed whether or not to include our son. We decided Bill
would have to acknowledge it. It's a very interesting story." But she
added: "We don't tell his story. He has to."

Bill Moyers was publisher of Long Island Newsday in 1967 when the family
settled in the comfortable suburb of Garden City, N.Y. Their three children
attended public schools, went to church and earned their spending money. "I
never wanted for anything," William said. "My parents raised me to become
the best child I could, and my brain still got hijacked." He admits to
having drunk beer and smoked marijuana, like many other rebellious
adolescents. "If anyone had ever told me I would become addicted from
casual use of marijuana, I would have told them, 'No way,' " William Moyers
said. "If anyone had told me I would become an alcoholic, I would have told
them, 'No way.' "

Drugs filled only a dark corner of his life back when he excelled as
captain of the high school track team, snagged passes as a tight end on the
football team and played trombone in the band.

He graduated from Washington and Lee University in 1981, and went to work
for The Dallas Times Herald, where colleagues remember him as an eager
reporter, and later worked for Newsday and The Minneapolis Star Tribune.
Still, he felt he could not measure up to his parents, who after 43 years
of marriage are so close that they finish each other's sentences. Awed by
his father's erudition, William Moyers admits that he found it hard to
grasp the more intellectual documentaries, like "Joseph Campbell and the
Power of Myth." "I did suffer from lack of esteem and self-worth, comparing
myself to my mother and father," William Moyers said. "Drugs took me out of
the feelings of no self-esteem, this sense of despair, and put me somewhere
else. It made it easier for me to face life for a while." He paused. "Then
it came to where I couldn't face life without getting high."

By his early 20s, William Moyers said, "I was addicted to pretty much
everything and anything." Nobody noticed, he said, because "I was very
resourceful at hiding it and keeping my head above water." "On the outside,
I looked pretty ordinary," he added. "On the inside, I was burning up."
Before he hit 30, William said, he was barely able to function. Bill Moyers
recalled: "I insisted we have lunch together because his behavior had
become erratic. And I said, 'Do you have a drug problem?' And he said, 'Not
at all; are you kidding?' " The next day William disappeared on a cocaine
and alcohol binge that lasted all night. "My parents were stunned, hurt and
angry," he said, recalling when he called from a pay phone in Harlem to
confess that he had crashed. "It was a education for the Moyers family,
believe me."

Bill and Judith Moyers, who now live on Manhattan's Central Park West,
reacted like any other parents. "For the first few weeks, we said, 'What
did we do wrong?' " Mrs. Moyers said. Her son had always looked good; he
even ran marathons.

"He passed every test that we knew to give," Judith Moyers said, "because
we were using that great American test: If you're achieving, you must be
OK. We had to learn that among many high achievers, there's an extremely
high incidence of addiction."

Bill Moyers had never encountered drug abuse, though his grandfather and
favorite uncle were alcoholics. So when William asked, "I need help; where
should I go?" Bill Moyers said, "We didn't have a clue." Even as he made
frenetic inquiries, he said, "I felt deficient as a parent because I had
not been able to identify or prevent what happened."

Judith Moyers was the determined sort of parent who saw her son's addiction
as something to overcome. "I had this ego that said, 'I can solve it,' "
she said. "I had never let go of anything in my entire life. I said I would
wrestle this down."

In August 1989, William went into Hazelden, a respected substance abuse
treatment center outside Minneapolis. The following month, Bill and Judith
Moyers joined him for a five-day program that teaches families to come to
grips with their member's addiction. Bill Moyers found it painful to
acknowledge that his son was an addict. "It was hard for me to go to these
sessions," he said. "I'm a shy man, which may be why I do television. I can
hide behind cameras."

So when William Moyers slid back into drinking and drugging in February
1991, he recalled, "They were devastated and angry and confused." Bill
Moyers describes the relapses as more frightening than the original
discovery of his son's addiction. "When William came out of Hazelden, I
thought we had a silver bullet," he said. "Ten months later, he relapsed
and I thought we had failed."

The Hazelden counselors cautioned that relapse is not uncommon, but Judith
Moyers said, "We didn't absorb that at the time."

"It struck real terror," she said, "because we believed that treatment had
worked well with him. He believed that too."

William had fallen in love with another patient, Allison, who had arrived
from Bermuda to shake her own alcohol and drug problems, and they married.
After his monthlong return to Hazelden, they moved to Atlanta, where he
went to work as a writer for CNN. Determined to stay clean, he took up
flying and earned his pilot's license.

On Columbus Day weekend in 1994, William Moyers wandered downtown and
impulsively bought a supply of crack cocaine that nearly killed him. "It
rolled right over me like a steamroller," he said. "I remember holding the
drugs in my hand and saying, 'This is going to last me for a week.' It
lasted for eight hours."

It was not just the cocaine but also the despair that engulfed him. "I did
not consider suicide, but I thought I wouldn't make it," he said. "There I
was in the fall of '94, utterly defeated. My wife, who has been sober for
nine years, was stunned. My parents were just speechless." After his wife
fetched him from a crack house, he checked into Ridgeview, a treatment
program in suburban Atlanta, for 115 days. "I went there and said, 'Have
me, just have me,' " he said. "I stayed there until they told me to go."
Sprawled on his bed at Ridgeview, William Moyers said, "I heard a whisper
in my ear, and it said, 'St. Paul' " -- the city, not the apostle. He quit
CNN in 1995 and, without a job, moved his family back to Minnesota.
Scanning the classifieds, he saw Hazelden advertising for a public policy
analyst, and applied. "I really believe that coincidence is God's way of
remaining anonymous," he said.

Jane Nakken, the executive vice president of external relations at
Hazelden, had qualms. "I was a little nervous about hiring him because of
his parents," she said. "How do you fire Bill Moyers' son if he isn't what
you think he is?" She checked with his former boss at CNN, who urged her to
send William back to Atlanta, saying they still wanted him. Instead,
William Moyers is now Hazelden's director of public policy. "He's just a
delight to work with," Mrs. Nakken said. "He is totally passionate about
putting a face on recovery."

William Moyers, now 38, is lobbying for legislation requiring that
insurance companies classify addiction as an disease, and pay for the same
kind of treatment they allow for other illnesses. Politicians, he said,
don't pay attention to constituents who prefer to be invisible. "We get
better and then we melt back into society," he said. "We pay our taxes, mow
our grass in summer and shovel our snow in winter. Our success is our own
worst enemy."

Clean and sober for three and a half years now, he does not underestimate
the pitfalls. He worries about statistics that show his three children are
four times more at risk of addiction than others because he and his wife
were hooked on alcohol and drugs.

"I don't take my recovery for granted, but I know what I've got to do to
keep recovering," he said. What pulled him through, he believes, was his
family's support. "It would have been a lot harder for me to recover if my
parents or my wife had turned their backs on me," he said. Judith Moyers
said they never considered abandoning their son. "I can't think of anything
any of my children would do that would cause a permanent rupture in our
relationship," she said "A parent's love is like that." Still, William
Moyers said, "I think my father blamed himself for my addiction for a long
time. It took my final relapse for him to come to the acceptance that he
wasn't at fault."

In the last few months that they have spent together, he said, "We're
closer than I could have ever imagined."

"I can't believe that from such adversity has come such a satisfaction," he
said. "We are like kites rising against the wind."

Leading For Life, Citing Grim AIDS Statistics, Sounds Alarm
That Black Silence Equals Black Death (Harvard AIDS Institute Bulletin
Issued Via PRNewswire Says Media, Religious, Community, Medical
And Academic Leaders Gathered This Week At The W.E.B. Du Bois Institute
For African American Studies In Cambridge, Massachusetts,
For A Program Titled, 'The Untold Story - AIDS And Black Americans,
A Briefing On The Crisis Of AIDS Among African Americans' - The Epidemic
Is Worsening - 58 Percent Of African Americans Characterize AIDS
As A 'More Urgent Problem Today Than In The Past,' AIDS Is The Leading Killer
Of Blacks Age 45 And Younger - And Half Of Black Americans
Support Needle Exchange Programs)

Date: Sat, 21 Mar 1998 18:34:28 -0500
To: DrugSense News Service 
From: Richard Lake 
Subject: MN: US: Wire: Leading For Life, Citing Grim AIDS Statistics,
Sounds Alarm That Black Silence Black Death
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: "Kendra E. Wright" 
Source: PRNewswire
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998


Clear Signal for Government Action on Treatment Access, Needle Exchange
Programming to Turn the Tide

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- With AIDS now the number one killer of young black men
and women, media, religious, community, medical and academic leaders
gathered this week at the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African American
Studies for a special media briefing, "The Untold Story: AIDS and Black
Americans, A Briefing on the Crisis of AIDS Among African Americans." The
briefing, organized by the Leading for Life Campaign, explored the complex
issues of HIV/AIDS incidence, impact and awareness in African American

Denouncing reports that AIDS crisis is over, Professor Henry Louis Gates,
Jr., Director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute and Chairman of the
Department of Afro-American Studies at Harvard University, invoked
government, community and religious leadership to take action to stem the
seriously disproportionate ravaging of African American communities by

"Although a decline in overall AIDS deaths has been widely reported, AIDS
is absolutely not over for African Americans. In fact, the great tragedy is
that a whole new wave is just beginning," Gates said at this week's
briefing. "We must take strong and immediate action to turn the tide on the
AIDS epidemic before it decimates our communities. We are living with and
dying from this devastating disease, yet our leadership and the government
has failed to effectively mobilize a response."

Incidence and Impact

"HIV/AIDS in the African American community is an extremely serious, urgent
condition," concurred Helene Gayle, M.D., M.P.H. Director, National Center
for HIV, sexually transmitted disease (STD) and tuberculosis (TB)
Prevention at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Alarming government statistics on HIV/AIDS show:

-- More African Americans under the age of 45 die from AIDS than from
homicide, cancer and heart disease.

-- More than one third -- 35% -- of all reported AIDS cases and 43% of new
AIDS cases are among African Americans, though African Americans comprise
only 12% of the U.S. population.

-- African American women today make up 60% of all new AIDS cases reported
among women.

-- African American men represent 39% of new cases among all men, an annual
case rate that is six times that of white men.

"The numbers alone cannot express the impact of the HIV epidemic in the
African American community. The threat of HIV has become a reality that
young African American men and women must face," said Gayle.

In fact, a new national study released by The Kaiser Family Foundation at
this week's briefing found that the formidable threat of AIDS is a source
of grave concern among African Americans. Survey results demonstrated:

-- One in two African Americans (50%) say they are very concerned about
becoming infected with HIV, a level of worry that is twice that among a
national sample for all Americans (24%).

-- One in two (49%), versus only a third of a national sample of all
Americans, knows someone who has HIV/AIDS or has died from AIDS.

-- 58% of African Americans characterize AIDS as a "more urgent problem
today than in the past."

"Our survey clearly demonstrates that African Americans are deeply
concerned about HIV/AIDS in a very personal way," said Sophia Chang, M.D.,
M.P.H., Director of HIV Programs, Kaiser Family Foundation, who introduced
the survey results.

Moving Forward: Policy Changes

The survey also revealed that a majority of African Americans (58%) favor
needle exchange -- programs that offer clean needles to IV drug users in
exchange for used ones. Needle exchange remains a hotly debated issue,
though it is well understood to significantly reduce the spread of HIV
infection among injection drug users at high risk for HIV transmission.
"Needle exchange is a cornerstone of a comprehensive prevention program,"
said Gayle of the CDC, underscoring the complexity of the national debate,
which finds government officials, activists, the medical and religious
community at odds between and among themselves.

"We must confront community complacency and governmental roadblocks to
policies like needle exchange -- which have been proven to stop the spread
of HIV without increasing drug use," decried Mario Cooper, the convener of
the briefing and founder of Leading for Life. "We are in the midst of a
serious public health crisis that demands immediate action. Our children,
our brother and sisters, mothers and fathers are dying cruel and untimely

"African American churches, government officials, entertainers and civil
rights organizations must band together -- for black silence = black death,
and far too many deaths have taken our loved ones already," Cooper
continued. "The hope comes in the possibility that the knowledge, concern
and awareness identified among African Americans in the Kaiser survey will
translate to action that demands government and community mobilization to
stem the tide of this epidemic that's killing African American kids and
devastating their families."

"We will continue to inform the media through mailings and meetings on the
impact of AIDS on African Americans," said Gates. "Our goal is to respond
to the need for education and action demonstrated in the Kaiser survey by
assisting organizations such as the Balm In Gilead, the black church
organization dedicated to increasing AIDS awareness in the religious
community," Gates stated.

The conference was co-sponsored by Leading for Life/Harvard AIDS Institute
and the Kaiser Family Foundation. Leading for Life was launched in 1996
with The Harvard AIDS Institute, the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African
American Studies, the Kaiser Family Foundation and others, to call
attention to the disproportionate number of AIDS cases in African
Americans, raise awareness among leadership and outline specific steps to
stop the increasing spread of HIV.

SOURCE Harvard AIDS Institute

Secondhand Smoke Death Claim Rejected ('Associated Press' Article
In 'San Jose Mercury News' Says A Jury In Muncie, Indiana, Ruled Thursday
That The Tobacco Industry Was Not Liable In The Cancer Death
Of A Non-Smoking Nurse Exposed To Secondhand Smoke At A Veterans Hospital -
Lawsuit Believed To Be The First That Went To Trial In Which Secondhand Smoke
Was Blamed For An Individual's Death)
Link to earlier story
Date: Sun, 22 Mar 1998 10:08:22 -0800 To: mapnews@mapinc.org From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: US IN: Secondhand Smoke Death Claim Rejected Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA) Contact: letters@sjmercury.com Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/ Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 SECONDHAND SMOKE DEATH CLAIM REJECTED MUNCIE, Ind. (AP) -- The tobacco industry is not liable in the cancer death of a non-smoking nurse exposed to secondhand smoke at a veteran's hospital, a jury decided Thursday. The jury of six non-smokers said that cigarettes were not a defective product and that their makers were not negligent for failing to tell people that secondhand cigarette smoke was dangerous. Philip Wiley was seeking at least $13.3 million in compensatory damages from six tobacco companies and two industry groups for the 1991 death of his wife, Mildred, age 56. The jury also could have recommend millions more in punitive damages. The lawsuit was believed to be the first blaming secondhand smoke in an individual's death to reach trial. Wiley's attorneys attempted to show that tobacco companies were aware of the danger of secondhand smoke for decades and tried to cover it up. Industry attorneys said there is no proven connection between secondhand smoke and cancer. They also said Mildred Wiley's cancer may have had other causes and could have started in her pancreas, then spread to her lung. The industry recently settled a $348 million class-action suit filed by flight attendants against the tobacco industry. That case was the nation's first secondhand-smoke trial. The attendants blamed their illnesses on the air they breathed on smoky airliners. ``The case in Muncie is of particular importance because it would set a new precedent for the industry's vulnerability,'' said Cliff Douglas, a lawyer who consults anti-tobacco members of Congress. Mary Aronson, a tobacco policy and litigation analyst in Washington, said the case could have more impact than other tobacco liability cases because Indiana law is more conservative than that of other states. The defendants were Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp., R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., Philip Morris Inc., The American Tobacco Co., Lorillard Tobacco Co. and the Liggett Group Inc. Also named in the suit were the Tobacco Institute and the Council for Tobacco Research.

Snuff Out Tobacco Altogether (Op-Ed In 'San Francisco Chronicle'
By Anti-Smoking Clinician Urges Prohibitionist Taxes
As A Way To Achieve A Utopian Tobacco-Free America)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:07:16 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US: OPED: Snuff Out Tobacco Altogether
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: "Tom O'Connell" 
Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA)
Contact: chronletters@sfgate.com
Website: http://www.sfgate.com/
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
Author: Joel M. Moskowitz


STEVEN GOLDSTONE, head of the second largest U.S. tobacco companny,
complained that without congressional support for the tobacco settlement,
"tobacco will remain an unsolved problem for many years to come." What
problem is he talking about? The only problem the settlement solves is the
industry's potential bankruptcy. It does little to protect public health.

Agreeing to terms negotiated with attorneys general from 40 states, the
industry promised to reimburse the states $368 billion over a 25-year
period for costs associated with Medicaid patients, accept advertising
restrictions and pay penalties if tobacco use among minors does not
decrease. In return, Congress is expected to limit the industry's civil

How can we offer an insurance policy to an industry that markets our most
dangerous consumer product and has committed conspiracy and fraud for more
than 30 years?

Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death in the country. Each
year 430,000 users die prematurely, and 50,000 non-users die from exposure
to second-hand smoke. More people die from tobacco use than the combined
death toll from alcohol and illegal drug use, AIDS, car accidents,
homicides and suicides. Tobacco-related disease costs our society more than
$123 billion annually with $50 billion in avoidable medical expenses and
$73 billion in lost productivity. During a 25-year period this could amount
to $3 trillion.

At stake are the lives of 50 million adult users as well as 1 million new
teenage users each year, Although smoking has declined among adults since
the mid 1960s, the smoking rate has been stable during the past decade. One
in 'four adults smokes cigarettes. Among high school seniors, following a
15-year decline, tobacco use has increased in the past five years. One in
three smokes cigarettes, and one in 10 uses "spit" tobacco.

Even though no one dares to say it, our goal should be a tobacco-free
America. This may sound radical, but tobacco is the only consumer product
that causes disease, disability and death when it is used as intended. To
argue that tobacco use should be an adult choice is specious. "Free choice"
is meaningless because most users are addicted. Most adult smokers regret
ever having started smoking.

We can achieve a tobacco-free society by the year 2020 if we adopt the
following seven policies. First, raise the federal tobacco excise tax by $2.
This will reduce smoking among youth and motivate adults to quit. Use
the revenue generated to fund tobacco-related medical care and the
subsequent measures. Second, authorize the FDA to phase out the
production and marketing of tobacco within 20 years. Third, eliminate
tobacco advertising and promotion.

Unlike political speech, commercial speech is subject to limited
constitutional protection. An industry that devastates public health and
violates the public trust should not be entitled to advertise its
products. Fourth, prohibit tobacco use in workplaces and public settings.
This will help users quit and protect non-users. Fifth, expand the
Centers for Disease Control's nationwide campaign to discourage tobacco use
and promote cessation. Sixth, fund the Departments of Labor and Agriculture
to help tobacco workers and farmers change their enterprise. Finally,
eliminate tobacco imports and exports. Current world-wide smoking patterns
foreshadow the premature death of 100 million people in the next 20 years.

Public support for tobacco control has never been stronger. Most nonsmokers
want a smoke-free environment, and most smokers want to quit. We must
harvest this support and cultivate the political will to move toward a
tobacco-free America.

Dr. Joel M. Moskowitz, associate director of the Center for Family and
Community Health at the University of California at Berkeley, has been
conducting research on programs and policies to prevent tobacco use since

Buckley - Curious Aspects Of The Tobacco Settlement (Rambling Essay
By William F. Buckley In 'Orange County Register' Also Endorses Higher Taxes
As A Means To Achieve Prohibition)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:07:35 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US: OPED: Buckley - Curious Aspects of the Tobacco Settlement
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: John W.Black
Source: Orange County Register (CA)
Contact: letters@link.freedom.com
Website: http://www.ocregister.com/
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
Author: William F. Buckley Jr.-Mr. Buckley is a syndicated columnist


Legislators are maneuvering adroitly in the tobacco Armageddon coming up.

It is sobering to heavy political spenders that notwithstanding that the
tobacco industry spent copiously in the last political campaign, nothing
very much appears to have been accomplished. A tobacco bill of some sort is
coming in, and it can be said of it that it is coming in from left field if
it's true that the political left tends to be intrusive in the matter of
(non-sexual) human behavior. There are impulses from the right, if it's
true that the right tends to be distinctively protective of young people.

Meanwhile, Philip Morris et al. are all over the place, advertising in the
press and on TV their version of a desirable tobacco settlement: 1) lots of
money, 2) a ban on cigarette vending machines, 3) disclosure of all
health-related research and 4) OK on a ban on secondhand smoke in public

What do they get in return? They want a yearly cap on damages of $5
billion. If your lawyer gets a $10 billion judgment, the second half of the
award would not be payable until next year. Since it is at this point
likelier than not that juries are going to be awarding larger and larger
judgments as we blacken the image of the weed-makers, it is not improbable
that after a year or two the companies would be paying out $5 billion in
annual damages forever. What this means is as simple as that they are
willing to add $5 billion per year to the X billion dollars they are
already willing to step forward and pay up.

At this moment, the front lines of the quarrel engage the question of
second-hand-smoke damage and of child protection. Jacob Sullum, a senior
editor of the libertarian monthly Reason, has written a very readable book
called "For Your Own Good." Sullum does not smoke but will die in defense
of the right of others to smoke. His book is a persuasive polemic against
the shower-adjusters of this world whose great hands reach into your
quarters and insist that the temperature you are enjoying is really just a
little too hot, or else a little too cold.

Sullum devastatingly reviews the evidence that we are all victimized by our
neighbors' smoking. Yes, there is some effect from the other person's
smoke, but it is very weak. "The EPA estimated that living with a smoker
increases your risk of lung cancer by 19 percent. In contrast, smoking
increases your risk of lung cancer by 1,000 percent."

The tobacco companies' willingness to give up on the anti-smoking in public
quarters crusade is significant but also shrewd. They are prepared to let
that battle be fought out be the smokers themselves, whose indignation
could easily take effective political shape in the months and years ahead.

On the matter of young people, the question has to do with what can be done
to children by adults and what can't be done to children by adults and what
can't be done to children by adults. In Idaho they are considering a
Draconian law that would imprison anyone selling to a minor from an
establishment that does not have a permit to sell cigarettes. Now the
tobacco settlement, in addition to agreeing to ban cigarette vending
machines, volunteers $500 million per year to a campaign to dissuade young
people from smoking and throws in a ban on outdoor advertising and "on the
use of cartoon characters or human figures in other advertising."

Why they need such advertising is a puzzle, since Hollywood is doing it for
free. Reports The Wall Street Journal: "Smoking in movies is continuing to
flourish. Julia Roberts puffs away in 'My Best Friend's Wedding,' a movie
that young teen-age girls helped turn into a blockbuster.
University of
California at San Francisco researchers analyzed five top-grossing films
each year and found that while only one lead character smoked in 1990, 80
percent of moviedom's male leads lit up in 1991-96." Leonardo DiCaprio and
Kate Winslet hardly had time to drown in "Titanic" so busy were they
puffing away.

But people do not go gladly into the dark night of economic extinction. If
the tobacco companies were really to succeed in abolishing teen-age
smoking, they would wake up one day without enough money to pay their
annual $5 billion in damages. What they very much fear is what such as
Jacob Sullum resent for philosophical reasons: namely, a $1.50 increase per

I have been brought up on the neat little formula that a 4 percent rise in
cigarette prices means a 1 percent reduction in cigarette use. This
transcribes to a 25 percent reduction in smoking if the proposed bill went
into law. That's a lot fewer cigarettes sold, an objective in which every
one can find pleasure and pain.

Cover-Up Alleged (Brief Item In 'Orange County Register'
Says The Arrest Last Year Of Mexico's Top Anti-Drug Official
May Have Been Instigated By Other Officials Fabricating Evidence
To Cover Up An Embarrassing Investigation)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:08:21 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US: Cover-Up Alleged
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk:John W.Black
Source: Orange County Register (CA)
Contact: letters@link.freedom.com
Website: http://www.ocregister.com/
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998


Just over a year ago, Mexico's worst drug scandal exploded when authorities
arrested top anti-drug official Gen. Jesus Gutierrez Rebollo and jailed him
on charges of collaborating with traffickers.

Now, four former members of the general's unit have alleged that Defense
Minister Enrique Cervantes fabricated his case against Gutierrez to cover
up an embarrassing investigation led by Gutierrez.

Mexicans Hail US Admission On Drug Demand ('Dallas Morning News'
Notes Mexican Health Secretary Juan Ramon De La Fuente Spoke At The Opening
Of A Two-Day Bilateral Conference In El Paso, Texas, On Reducing Drug Demand,
And Said A US Admission That Its Domestic Demand
Drives The Hemisphere's Drug Trade Has Opened A New Era
In Cooperation With Mexico)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 19:07:55 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US: Mexicans Hail U.S. Admission on Drug Demand
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: adbryan@onramp.net
Source: Dallas Morning News
Contact: letterstoeditor@dallasnews.com
Website: http://www.dallasnews.com
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
Author: David LaGesse / The Dallas Morning News


Officials at bilateral conference herald new era of cooperation

EL PASO - A U.S. admission that its domestic demand drives the hemisphere's
drug trade has opened a new era in cooperation with Mexico, Mexican
officials said Thursday.

"This is a radical change," said Mexican Health Secretary Juan Ramon de la
Fuente. "An old Mexican proposition has finally found its voice."

Mr. de la Fuente spoke at the opening of a two-day bilateral conference in
El Paso on reducing drug demand, which Mexico and the rest of Latin America
say is the catalyst of the regional drug problem.

Some participants said the meeting, initiated and hosted by U.S. officials,
amounted to an unusual display of self-criticism for the United States, a
country that historically has blamed its southern neighbors for the
narcotics problem.

The conference took place amid debate in Congress on whether to give Mexico
a failing grade in its campaign against trafficking. Many U.S. lawmakers
say Mexico has not stemmed the flow of cocaine and heroin into the United

Critics were quick to attack the U.S. conference statement of culpability,
arguing that the administration appears unwilling to push Mexico into more
effective enforcement efforts.

"They're holding this conference to put the blame on the United States
instead of Mexico," said Phil Jordan, a former Drug Enforcement
Administration official and outspoken critic of Mexico. "We should be
pointing the finger at Mexico, which has failed to attack the cartels
operating there."

Nonetheless, the bilateral meeting gave the two governments an opportunity
to highlight Mexico's argument that U.S. consumer money fuels the drug

"U.S. consumption of drugs . . . is now acting as an engine that is sucking
cocaine and heroin through Mexico," said U.S. drug czar Barry McCaffrey.

Mr. McCaffrey said the timing of the conference was not tied to an expected
congressional action by month's end on whether to overturn President
Clinton's decision to certify Mexico as fully cooperating in the
counter-drug fight. The annual certification debate has proven heated in
recent years, particularly as attention turned to Mexico as a growing
transit route for illegal drugs.

"This event [in El Paso] is unrelated to the process of certification," Mr.
McCaffrey said.

But Mexican officials clearly welcomed the chance to answer criticism from
Capitol Hill with their own about U.S. demand.

"We appreciate the sincerity of this U.S. administration to address the
issue of consumption," said Juan Rebolledo Gout, Mexico foreign affairs

They said it was evidence of the Clinton administration's emphasis on
forging a bilateral effort.

"We need cooperation instead of confrontation," said Mr. de la Fuente. "We
need cooperation instead of decertification."

The 300 drug-treatment professionals and academics at the conference said
they hope to generate cross-border cooperation in reducing consumption,
such as bilingual education and advertising campaigns.

The two countries in May released a bilateral strategy for fighting drugs
that made demand reduction the No. 1 goal.

That agreement partly reflected broader Clinton administration policy,
placing more emphasis on prevention and treatment programs. White House
budget requests have sought larger increases for demand-reduction efforts
than for the enforcement programs favored by previous Republican

The debate over demand vs. production is an old one, and one that speakers
in El Paso said appeared increasingly irrelevant.

"A division of countries into categories of producer, consumer or
trafficker is not realistic," Mr. de la Fuente said.

The United States has drug producers and traffickers, and Mexico has an
increasing consumption problem, he said.

In Mexico City, for example, the percentage of people using cocaine more
than doubled in four years to 4 percent in 1997, Mr. de la Fuente said.

Mexican border towns also show an alarming jump in drug consumption.

"These are the red warning lights for us as a country," the Mexican health
secretary said.

Drug problems in the two countries appear increasingly similar, and that
has helped encourage more cooperation, he said: "This gathering itself
would have been unthinkable a few years ago."

NAFTA Is Causing Traffic Congestion At Borders ('New York Times'
Notes Increasing Drug Interdiction Efforts At US-Mexico Border
Are Causing Long Delays In Cross-Border Trade - 185,000 Trucks Crossed
At Laredo, Texas, A Decade Ago, While Now Nearly One Million Trucks Cross
Each Year - US Customs Seized More Than 607,000 Pounds Of Marijuana
And 46,000 Pounds Of Cocaine In Its Border Regions Last Year)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 22:41:06 -0500
To: DrugSense News Service 
From: Richard Lake 
Subject: MN: US: NYT: NAFTA Is Causing Traffic Congestion at Borders
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: "Dick Evans" 
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
Source: The New York Times
Author: Sam Howe Verhovek
Contact: letters@nytimes.com
Website: http://www.nytimes.com/


LAREDO, Texas -- It was a trip of four and a half miles, to haul a trailer
of Mexican-made air-conditioner parts from a warehouse in Nuevo Laredo,
Mexico, to a freight forwarder just across the border in Texas. For
Salvador Romero, the driver, the journey took 29 hours, door to door. First
came a four-hour backup on the Mexican side. Then, once Romero made it
across the Lincoln-Juarez Bridge over the Rio Grande, his truck got flagged
for a random, intensive search by United States Customs agents and their
drug-sniffing dogs. A paperwork mistake meant the trailer had to stay
parked at Customs overnight. More inspection backups meant the search was
not finished until the next afternoon.

"It's a constant traffic jam out here," said Romero, who earns 80 pesos --
about $9.30 -- for every round trip he makes between the two nations. "On
average, I can make one trip a day, maybe two or possibly even three if I'm
lucky. And then there are days like this."

More than four years after the North American Free Trade Agreement took
effect, many crossings along the 2,000-mile border between the United
States and Mexico are increasingly jammed with trucks, as the roads and
bridges simply cannot keep pace with the booming growth of trade. While the
congestion affects entry points from Southern California to the Rio Grande
Valley of Texas, it is at its worst in Laredo, the busiest cargo crossing
on the border, with lines sometimes stretching for five or six miles in
either direction from the Rio Grande here.

A decade ago, 185,000 trucks a year crossed the two bridges at Laredo,
while now nearly one million trucks cross three bridges each year, with at
least a doubling of that figure projected by 2010.

The heavy traffic causes tie-ups that have added to the cost of shipping
goods all along the border and that periodically set off tensions between
the two nations.

In recent months, the tie-ups have been compounded by lengthy searches
ordered by the Customs Service, an agency caught between conflicting
mandates to help speed the flow of commercial goods between the two
countries and to stem the flow of illegal drugs.

"We've got a big drug problem at the border, and we're not going to turn
our eye away from that," said Leonard C. Lindheim, special agent in charge
of investigations at the Customs Service's South Texas division. "If it
causes long lines, that's a price we'll have to pay."

Here in Laredo, the trade agreement has brought some economic activity,
evident in the warehouses that have sprouted all over town. But there is
also a nagging sense that the pact's benefits to Laredo were overstated
while its drawbacks -- pollution, traffic and other problems -- are
overwhelming this city of 150,000 people. The unemployment rate here
remains above 10 percent, more than twice the national average. Despite
their obvious frustrations at the system, most Mexican drivers seemed
resigned to the process as they gathered at a waiting area in the customs
lot here. Although it was only March, temperatures hit the 90s by midday,
and many drivers said they were already dreading the nightmarish heat of

"You have to stay near the truck at all times, so what can you do?" said
Jorge Campos, 42, a driver based in Nuevo Laredo who was waiting as crates
of elevator parts he was taking to Laredo were removed from his truck by
forklifts, searched by Customs officials and sniffed by the dogs. "Of
course we are mad, but you can't blame them," he said, gesturing toward the
agents and their dogs. "They're just doing their jobs. They didn't make the
law." The searches are part of Operation Brass Ring, a six-month program
started by Customs in February that includes roving teams of inspectors and
intensive random inspections, like the one Romero's truck underwent, that
are all aimed at sharply increasing the amount of drugs seized at the
border. Customs already seizes more drugs than all other federal agencies
combined, including more than 607,000 pounds of marijuana and 46,000 pounds
of cocaine in its border regions alone last year. But with some
law-enforcement officials estimating that 90 percent or more of all drugs
that cross the border go undetected, the agency is under constant pressure
to step up the pace and scope of its searches.

Some drugs still enter the country in backpacks carried by smugglers across
remote stretches of desert. But with border crossings overwhelmed by
commercial traffic, many dealers have become increasingly brazen about
trying to hide the drugs inside shipments aboard 18-wheelers and other big
trucks. Recent searches by Customs agents have turned up cocaine and heroin
in the doors, walls, axles, fuel tanks and tires of the big trucks, and
inside cargo pallets and even the hollowed-out cores of a load of
vegetables. Sgt. First Class Richard Rodriguez of the Texas National
Guard's antidrug task force, who was assisting Customs agents with truck
searches here recently, said it could take up to six hours to complete a
thorough inspection. Many trucks are given a cursory inspection and waved
on at the bridges. Local transportation planners say they are trying to
ease the tie-ups, which tend to be at their worst in the late afternoons.
Trucks are increasingly using the six-year-old Colombia-Solidarity Bridge,
about 20 miles northwest of here, which had initially been considered
something of a government white elephant because drivers balked at making
the detour from major highways. That diversion can take two hours or more
on either side; but the eight-lane bridge has dozens of inspection docks
and the crossing procedure is much quicker. The sister cities are also
embarking on construction of another bridge later this year.

Customs officials also have long-range plans for easing the congestion. The
agency already uses three huge X-ray machines along the border, two in
California and one in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, that look a bit like
mammoth car washes and that can inspect a truck's contents in minutes. But
prospects for their widespread use are uncertain, since the machines cost
$3.5 million each.

Customs officials are also considering use of high-tech devices that can
"sniff" cocaine vapors and are pressing plans to streamline paperwork by
putting truck manifests on computers that would be linked to Customs
agencies in Mexico, Canada and the United States.

"There is no question that the infrastructure limits what you can do," said
Noel Sanchez Jr., the Customs Service's director of passenger operations
and vehicular traffic here. "But we can still do a good job at both things,
helping to move goods across the border and stopping drugs. Just give us
the resources, and we can do the job."

Jabbar Busted For Pot - Former NBA Star Nabbed At Pearson Airport
('Toronto Sun' Says The National Basketball Association's
All-Time Leading Scorer, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, 50, Was Busted
With Six Grams Of Marijuana By US Customs While Leaving Canada
On His Way Back To Los Angeles)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:26:28 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: Canada: Jabbar Busted For Pot
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: creator@mapinc.org
Source: Toronto Sun (Canada)
Contact: editor@sunpub.com
Website: http://www.canoe.ca/TorontoSun/
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
Author: Tom Godfrey -- Toronto Sun



The NBA's all-time leading scorer, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, was busted by U.S.
Customs while leaving Canada at Pearson airport with six grams of

Abdul-Jabbar, 50, was fined $500 by U.S. Customs before he was allowed to
board a flight to the U.S., Customs officials said.

Peel Regional Police Supt. Blair Foley said a U.S. Customs sniffer dog,
Floyd, detected drugs on the former Los Angeles Laker centre last Sunday
morning as he was about to board a flight for Los Angeles.

Police found a glass vial of pot he had concealed on his body. "He turned
the drugs over to us," Foley said. "He was searched for further drugs, but
there weren't any."


Foley said the retired basketball great, who was on the NBA's 50th
anniversary all-time team in 1996, was arrested for possession of a
controlled drug. He was not charged by Canadian police, who used their
discretionary powers to leave it in the hands of U.S. Customs.

Foley said the 7-foot-1 legend, known for his patented "sky hook" shot, was
released without conditions.

He said Abdul-Jabbar, formerly known as Lew Alcindor, was detained for some
time by police and Customs officials and his name was entered into the
computers of Canadian and U.S. police.

U.S. Customs spokesman Cherise Miles said any U.S. citizen nabbed with a
small quantity of marijuana is fined $500 and required to fill out four
sets of Customs forms.

"The person would be detained for some time and the incident would be
recorded in our computers," Miles said.

Calls by The Toronto Sun to Abdul-Jabbar's Los Angeles company were
unanswered yesterday. His secretary said she didn't know when he would be


Abdul-Jabbar was in Toronto last week, where he lunched at Jump Cafe and
Bar last Thursday with pals.

"He seems to be a very private guy," said cafe manager Bruce McAdams. "He
was surrounded by a party of suits."

Meanwhile, misdemeanor battery and false imprisonment charges against
Abdul-Jabbar were dismissed yesterday by a Los Angeles judge who ruled the
star complied with orders to complete 36 hours of anger management

Court Commissioner Gary Bindman said the star followed a Jan. 29 court
order, which also required a $5,000 payment to a police program for at-risk
youth. The charges stemmed from a driving dispute.

Copyright (c) 1998, Canoe Limited Partnership.

Abdul-Jabbar Arrested On Marijuana Charge ('Associated Press' Version)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 17:03:43 EST
Errors-To: manager@drcnet.org
Reply-To: high_420@hotmail.com
Originator: drctalk@drcnet.org
Sender: drctalk@drcnet.org
From: "Geoffery S. Thomas" 
To: Multiple recipients of list 
Subject: Abdul-Jabber-Busted for Pot!!!

Report: Abdul-Jabbar arrested on marijuana charge

Posted: Fri March 20, 1998 at 11:36 AM ET

TORONTO (AP) -- Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, the NBA's career leading scorer, was
arrested by U.S. Customs officials Sunday for possession of six grams of
marijuana at Pearson International Airport, the Toronto Sun reported Friday.

The newspaper said Abdul-Jabbar, 50, was fined $500 before being allowed
to board a flight to Los Angeles.

Peel Regional Police Supt. Blair Foley said the former Los Angeles Lakers
center was released without conditions, although his name was entered into
Canadian and U.S. police computers.

Foley said a U.S. Customs dog detected the marijuana, which the former Los
Angeles Lakers center concealed in a glass vial.

"He turned the drugs over to us," Foley said. "He was searched for further
drugs, but there weren't any."

Foley said Abdul-Jabbar was arrested for possession of a controlled drug.
He was not charged by Canadian police, who used their discretionary powers
to leave the matter with U.S. Customs.

U.S. Customs spokesman Cherise Miles said any U.S. citizen caught with a
small amount of marijuana is fined $500 and required to fill out four sets of
Customs forms. The newspaper said calls to Abdul-Jabbar's Los Angeles
company were unanswered.

Meanwhile, misdemeanor battery and false imprisonment charges against
Abdul-Jabbar were dismissed Thursday by a Los Angeles judge who ruled
he had complied with orders to complete 36 hours of anger management

West Los Angeles Municipal Court Commissioner Gary Bindman said
Abdul-Jabbar followed the January 29 court order, which also required
a $5,000 payment to a police department program for at-risk youth.

Jerry Cohen, a Universal Studios music editor, accused Abdul-Jabbar of
attacking him after a traffic dispute April 20, 1997. Cohen and
Abdul-Jabbar settled a civil lawsuit in December.

Ex-NBA Star Arrested In Marijuana Incident ('Reuters' Version)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 17:00:51 -0800 (PST)
From: Turmoil 
To: hemp-talk@hemp.net
Subject: HT: Ex-NBA Star Arrested in Marijuana Incident (fwd)
Sender: owner-hemp-talk@hemp.net

TORONTO (Reuters) - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, the National
Basketball Association's all-time leading scorer, was arrested
on marijuana charges last Sunday by U.S. Customs while leaving
Canada at Pearson airport, immigration officials said Friday.

A U.S. pre-screening customs dog named Floyd sniffed out six
grams of pot in a glass vial on the now-retired Hall-of-Famer.

Abdul-Jabbar, 50, was fined $500 by U.S. Customs as a part
of their Zero Tolerance program, and arrested by local police
for possession of a controlled drug.

The former Los Angeles center was released without
conditions and returned to the U.S.

U.S. and Canadian police now have Abdul-Jabbar on file, and
Canada Customs said he could be turned over to Immigration
authorities and face problems if he tries to return to Canada.

``He may be prevented or he may be allowed in on certain
terms and conditions, there's no clear cut yes or no,'' said
Mary Heyes, a Canada Immigration spokeswoman.

Canadian police chose to let U.S. Customs decide on charges
against Abdul-Jabbar, who was named on the league NBA's 50th
anniversary all-time team in 1996.

``There were several others treated the same way that day,
if he had a record or a drug selling record he would have been
treated differently. We weren't going to charge him just because
he was a celebrity,'' said Peter Morgan, a spokesman for the
Peel Regional Police.

``He wasn't strip-searched because his honesty was not in
question and we had the dog there. But he won't get the same
break the second time. He'll be charged,'' said Morgan.

Other recent brushes with the law by Abdul-Jabbar were
dismissed Thursday by a Los Angeles Judge.

Misdemeanor battery and false imprisonment charges were
dropped when the former NBA star obeyed a court order to
complete 36 hours of anger management, after attacking Jerry
Cohen, a Universal Studios music editor, during a traffic
dispute on April 20, 1997. The two men settled a civil lawsuit
last December.

Officer Shot During Drug Bust (Toronto's 'Globe And Mail'
Says A Toronto Cop Was Wounded Last Night During A Drug Sting,
Allowing The Suspect To Get Away)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:06:25 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: Canada: Officer Shot During Drug Bust
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: carey.ker@utoronto.ca
Source: Globe and Mail (Canada)
Contact: letters@globeandmail.ca
Website: http://www.globeandmail.ca/
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998


Police hunt for 'dangerous' suspect

TORONTO -- An undercover Toronto police officer was shot twice last night
during a drug sting.

The officer, 46, underwent emergency surgery at Sunnybrook Health Science
Centre and was in stable condition early this morning. His life was not
thought to be in danger.

"It appears it was a drug takedown of sorts and the officer was taken down
with it," said Sergeant Reg Wright.

The shooting occurred shortly after a police team tried to arrest two men
in a library parking lot beside the Shoppers' World Albion Mall in Rexdale,
near Finch Avenue and Albion Road, shortly after 9:30 p.m.

The team tried to arrest the two, but both fled on foot, police spokesman
Constable Devin Kealey said. The officers chased the men and arrested one.
Some of the drug squad officers went after the second, following him into a
residential neighbourhood for several hundred metres through back yards.
The suspect started shooting in front of a townhouse on Kendleton Drive,
wounding one officer in the arm and chest.

Police did not release the name of the injured officer, who is a 24-year
veteran and lives with his wife north of the city. Police spokesmen would
not say whether the officers shot at the suspects.

A two-kilometre-square area northeast of the airport was cordoned off early
this morning and police from across Toronto were searching it. Local
residents were being warned to be careful. "He's armed and dangerous and we
obviously don't want anyone to approach him," said Const. Kealey.

"We have officers from all throughout Toronto that have been brought into
this area to assist."

Rebagliati Blowing Smoke ('Calgary Sun' Columnist Eric Francis
Notes The Canadian Snowboarder Who Won An Olympic Gold Medal
And Almost Lost It For Supposedly Testing Positive For Cannabis
Is Enjoying Popular Support And Making A Fortune On Product Endorsements,
Including 'A Four-Year Deal With Roots And Making Appearances
Based On Your Famed Drug Involvement')

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:29:50 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: Canada: OPED: Rebagliati Blowing Smoke
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: creator@mapinc.org
Source: Calgary Sun (Canada)
Contact: callet@sunpub.com
Website: http://www.canoe.ca/CalgarySun/
Pubdate: Fri, 20 Mar 1998
Author: Eric Francis -- Calgalry Sun


Dear Ross Rebagliati:

I'm beginning to think you fibbed about that whole second -hand smoke thing.

Surrounded yesterday by a throng of media-types and cameras -- not to
mention the hundreds of squealing women and children standing in line for a
chance to meet you -- your judgment seemed a bit cloudy when asked how your
life had changed since finding the pot of gold in Nagano.

"I don't think my life has changed much at all," smiled our latest Canadian

C'mon, Ross.

You mean an afternoon at the ol' Whistler Plaza often meant having to hire
extra security so you weren't mobbed by 5,000 autograph seekers?

Are you trying to say the life of a boarder often entails having to hire
Wayne Gretzky's high-powered agent to juggle your interview schedule and
land you a lucrative part-time job at Roots?

Do 10 women typically propose to you every month?

Has the mere sight of you entering a mall been making women weep for a long

Geez, I never realized you often took a private jet from Vancouver to
Aspen, Colo., as part of your sponsorship tours.


Well, in light of the incredible spotlight you've been dealing with all
your snowboarding life, I must say I'm stoked about heading to the hills to
catch me some air and one of them big fat endorsement deals like yours.

Of course, over the years it must've been tiring having to constantly
appear on The Tonight Show, The Open Mike Show and then having to jet
across the country to be a presenter at the Junos.

But that's old hat to you.

Speaking of hats, that floppy little Roots number you and your Olympic
teammates wore caused quite a stir.

At one point, they tell me, there were over 100,000 on back order.

However, as you saw yesterday, dozens of people were able to buy the $40
cap or a $20 T-shirt with your photo on it at the TD Square Roots store,
where you signed autographs for two hours.

I guess you expected they had lined up long before you arrived.

With 5,000 fans of all ages showing up Saturday in Toronto and 3,000 in
Mont Tremblant, it's clear the majority of Canadians don't have a problem
with your admission to smoking dope in the recent past.

Neither do I.

In fact, I said from Day 1 of the controversy that Canadians should all be
proud of you.

Of course, some of your jealous teammates say you're selling out by signing
a four-year deal with Roots and making appearances based on your famed drug

That's nonsense.

Truth is, you know the controversial stripping and justified return of the
gold in Nagano likely added to your teen idol status.

I admire the way you've made no excuses for your past and are careful not
to endorse or shun pot smoking.

You simply tell kids they need to be responsible for their own actions and
that what they do now will have an effect on their futures.

You're a perfect example that a drug-user can quit and be successful.

Ross, we cheered when you won, we agonized and debated during the appeal,
and we were relieved when you got to keep your gold. Canada is proud of

But, please don't tell me your life hasn't changed. It makes it sound like
you're back on the weed.


"It's unbelievable. I'm surrounded by crying girls, excited snowboarders
and proud parents ... everybody is getting into this." -- Ross Rebagliati
in Toronto Saturday

Copyright (c) 1998, Canoe Limited Partnership.

VLTs Not Much Different Than Selling Heroin ('Calgary Sun'
Suggests Video Gaming Machines Are Both More Addictive
And Pay Back Less To Gamblers Than Any Form Of Wagering
That Existed Before The Government Of Alberta Took Over The Industry -
A Petition To Hold A Plebiscite On VLTs Is Circulating In The Province)

From: creator@islandnet.com (Matt Elrod)
To: mattalk@listserv.islandnet.com
Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 10:07:28 -0800
Source: Calgary Sun
Contact: callet@sunpub.com
Pubdate: March 20, 1998
Author: DON BRAID -- Calgary Sun


The guy dumping his paycheque into the VLT -- we'll call him Fred --
doesn't like anybody messing with his life.

"This is what I want to do," says Fred as he sets the lights spinning
yet again.

"It's my business. I don't like anybody giving me orders, especially
the government."

I find this attitude bizarre, since Fred's favorite expression of
freedom is to gamble against a computer controlled by the government.

The computer is in St. Albert, near Edmonton (suspicious enough in
itself, surely), and is programmed by nameless experts you and I will
never meet.

Trying to beat this system makes about as much sense as betting
against God.

The payouts over time are about 72% of the amount gambled -- a figure
that shocks even veterans from Las Vegas, the town where the Mob used
to think it had a great deal.

When an official from Las Vegas was invited to Alberta to talk about
gaming, he declined to give advice on grounds that Albertans are the
true experts.

"You've learned to suck more money out of the gamblers in 10 years
than we have in 50," he told the audience.

And he wondered how we managed that.

The answer, in large part, is VLT players like Fred.
He's addicted beyond logic -- so badly that he imagines he can beat
the government's inexorable machine.

It's people like him (and I've talked to dozens of them) who've
finally convinced me that a vote on VLTs is a good idea.

When Jim Gray's petition to hold a plebiscite comes my way, I'll

If the petition forces a civic vote, I'll listen carefully to all the
arguments before casting mine.

But at this point -- because of all the Freds -- I'm inclined to
believe VLTs should either be banished or radically changed.

This doesn't mean the bar owners are evil exploiters.
The ones I've met are fine people who suddenly find their livelihoods

They have some strong points in their favor -- including their legal
contracts with the government.

The owners' strongest argument is that VLTs are being unfairly
singled out from all the other forms of gaming, including slot
machines, bingos, lotteries and pull tickets.

But there's growing evidence that VLTs really are different --
addictive beyond any form of gambling in the history of Planet Earth.

In a survey of problem VLT players, AADAC found that 71% had no
addiction before they tried VLTs.

Most played only VLTs for an average of six hours a session, 18 days
a month.

Two-thirds had financial problems because of the machines.
Real people suffer in the cold heart of those numbers -- including
the 60-year-old woman who phoned me about three years ago.
She'd never gambled a penny until she discovered VLTs, she said.

She was financially comfortable.
But she ended up losing her savings, borrowing money, mortgaging her
paid-up house and alienating her children -- all to feed those

Would the government sell heroin just to bring in cash? I can't see
much difference.

Copyright (c) 1998, Canoe Limited Partnership.

Nobody Can Play God (Staff Editorial In 'Victoria Times Colonist'
Says The Birth Of A Baby Dependent On Methadone Doesn't Justify
Letting The State Play God By Compelling Use Of Contraceptives -
Where Would The Line Be Drawn? After The Addicts, Do We Force
Contraception On The Mentally Ill? On Criminals? Welfare Moms?)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 21:08:00 -0800 (PST)
To: mattalk@listserv.islandnet.com
From: arandell@islandnet.com (Alan Randell)
Subject: Nobody can play God
Newshawk: Alan Randell
Pubdate: March 20, 1998
Source: Victoria Times Colonist (B.C.)
Contact: timesc@interlink.bc.ca


Nobody can play God

Relatives of baby Molly, the little girl born addicted to drugs last
year, say the government should be able to force women in its
methadone program to use birth control.

It's an understandable argument from a family in anguish, compelling
to anyone thinking of the horror with which they have had to deal.

But it's also wrong. The government has no business telling women
whether they can bear children, no matter what the consequences.

Who would get to play God? And where would the line be drawn? After
the addicts, do we force contraception on the mentally ill? On
criminals? Welfare moms? How about those idiots you see shrieking
abuse at their cowering children in shopping malls; they're bad
mothers, breeding dysfunction.

The decision to conceive belongs to the mother, not the government.

Entrapment By Journalists Mitigated Sentence (Britain's 'Independent'
Says A Judge Reduced A Heroin Addict's 12-Month Sentence To Six Months,
Accepting Her Appeal And Ruling That Her Entrapment By Journalists
From 'News Of The World' Should Have Been Taken Into Account
As A Mitigating Factor, And Her Sentencing Judge
Should Have Referred To It Expressly In His Sentencing Remarks)

Date: Sat, 28 Feb 1998 20:06:45 -0500
To: DrugSense News Service 
From: Richard Lake 
Subject: MN: UK: Entrapment By Journalists Mitigated Sentence
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Alan Randell
Pubdate: February 20, 1998
Source: The Independent (UK)
Contact: letters@independent.co.uk
Website: http://www.independent.co.uk/


Regina v Tonnesson; Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) (Lord Justice
Otton, Mr Justice Wright and Mr Justice Dyson) 17 February 1998

A JUDGE, in passing sentence on a defendant who had been entrapped by
journalists into supplying drugs, should have taken that entrapment into
account as a mitigating factor, and should have referred to it expressly in
his sentencing remarks.

The Court of Appeal allowed the appeal of Brenda Ann Tonnesson against a
sentence of 12 months' imprisonment imposed at Lewes Crown Court after she
had pleaded guilty to supplying heroin, and substituted a sentence of six
months' imprisonment.

The appellant, a heroin addict, had been approached in Eastbourne by a man
who claimed to know her. He was accompanied by two other men, who
subsequently transpired to be a journalist and a photographer from the News
of the World. They told the appellant that they worked for a sheikh who had
told them to buy him some drugs, and asked her whether she would get them
some heroin. They gave her 50 and she bought four wraps of heroin, and
gave them to the men.

Immediately after that an article appeared in the News of the World,
identifying the appellant by name and by a photograph. The police
interviewed the appellant, who readily admitted the offence. As a result of
the article the appellant was assaulted by a member of the drug fraternity
in Eastbourne, and received a threat to her life.

Jane Humphreys (Registrar of Criminal Appeals) for the appellant.

Lord Justice Otton said that the appellant, who suffered from ill-health,
had two convictions for minor drugs offences, but none for supplying drugs.
It had been submitted on her behalf that the judge had failed to refer to
the involvement of an agent provocateur and appeared not to have taken that
into account. Although it was legitimate for police officers to entrap
criminals, even in those circumstances some mitigation of the sentence was
possible. Where, however, the entrapment was by journalists, even more
weight and consideration should be given to that factor.

There was substance in those submissions. There could be no doubt that the
appellant's behaviour had merited an immediate custodial sentence. The only
question was whether the judge had given full weight to the particular
circumstances in which the offence had been committed.

The fact that the appellant had been set up to commit the offence could not
be ignored. She had been tempted by the journalists to obtain and to supply
the drug to them. As a result of their blandishments she had been led into
committing her first offence of supplying drugs. Had the men been police
officers, that would have mitigated the sentence.

Different considerations must, however, apply where the tempters were
investigative journalists. In the present case the journalists had
proceeded with the purpose of discovering the nature and extent of the
drugs scene in Eastbourne and exposing it in their newspaper. That purpose
was perfectly honourable, but the public might well be left with a sense of
unease that it had been necessary to go to such lengths, identifying the
appellant by name and photograph so that the police were obliged to bring
her to justice, and so that she was exposed to humiliation and threats.

Those were consequences which were most unfortunate, and in fairness to the
journalists were wholly unforeseen. However, it was appropriate to reflect
the element of entrapment in the case, and the unusual and exceptional
circumstances which followed from it. It was clear from R v Mackey and Shaw
(1993) 14 Cr App R (S) 53 that the matter should have been mentioned
expressly in the sentencing remarks so that the public could have been
assured that the entrapment by journalists had been properly reflected in
the sentence imposed.

In the exceptional circumstances of the case, coupled with the appellant's
obvious state of ill-health, there was room for the court to reduce the
sentence substantially.

Kate O'Hanlon, Barrister

The Week Online With DRCNet, Issue Number 34
(The Drug Reform Coordination Network's News Summary For Activists
Features 14 Original Articles Including -
Heicklen Update - Penn State Professor Still Challenging System;
Federal Agency Finds International Drug War A Total Failure;
American Choice For President Of Colombia Quits Campaign;
And Editorial By Adam J. Smith, 'When Science Is Political')

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 15:42:16 EST
Originator: drc-natl@drcnet.org
Sender: drc-natl@drcnet.org
From: DRCNet (manager@drcnet.org)
To: Multiple recipients of list (drc-natl@drcnet.org)
Subject: The Week Online with DRCNet, Issue #34




(see http://www.drcnet.org/rapid/1998/3-13.html#medmjrally
or article below for details)

NEWSFLASH: BBC covering cannabis decriminalization issue on
shortwave TONIGHT -- see UK Cannabis Campaign article below.

action alert at http://www.drcnet.org/rapid/1998/3-18-1.html

NEW! Complete archive of back issues -- online at:

(To sign off this list, mailto:listproc@drcnet.org with the
line "signoff drc-natl" in the body of the message, or
mailto:drcnet@drcnet.org for assistance. To subscribe to
this list, visit http://www.drcnet.org/signup.html.)

To our subscribers: Our appeal for funds and members, sent
two days ago, has had a terrific response, but we still need
57 more new paying members to reach our goal of 750 by the
end of the month. (Total number of subscribers is around
4600.) If you haven't yet sent in your $25 annual
membership (or $10 for virtual, e-mail-only membership),
please do so this week. Send checks to: DRCNet, 2000 P St.,
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or call them in to (202) 293-8340 or fax to (202) 293-8344.
Extra donations from new and current members are also needed
and are greatly appreciated.

Copies of Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts are still
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please contact us at drcnet@drcnet.org, or call us and we
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more than two weeks ago, but haven't received your copy yet,
please let us know -- e-mail to drcnet@drcnet.org with the
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6. HEICKLEN UPDATE: Penn State Professor Still Challenging








14. EDITORIAL: When Science is Political



The United Nations will hold the first-ever Special Session
of the General Assembly on Drugs, from June 8th to June 10th
1998 in New York.

The session was originally conceived as a critical
examination of worldwide anti-drug policy. The focus of
this session has now been narrowed. According to the new
guidelines, only the expansion of existing policies will be
open for discussion. The United Nations aims to escalate
current drug repression tactics in a catastrophic quest
toward a 'drug free' society. In terms of crime, economic
and financial damage, and social and personal harm, this
policy is turning into a worldwide crisis.

The organizations participating in the Global Days Against
the Drug War consider it of great importance that
alternative proposals be heard at the onset of this session.
That is why we are calling on individuals and organizations
throughout the world to plan or participate in events --
anything from discussion forums or town meetings to street
parties and outright demonstrations -- during the weekend of
June 6-8, 1998. Many events are already being planned. The
purpose of the events is to raise awareness of the various
issues impacted by the drug war, both locally and globally.
As this is a broad coalition comprised of individuals and
organizations from a wide range of philosophical and
political perspectives, please note that joining the
coalition does not imply endorsement of the mission of any
other organization or of the events themselves.

We intend to make a clear statement that what is needed is
not escalated repression, but reform policies aimed at
reducing the damage currently done. To this aim, these
organizations have recently united to form the Global
Coalition for Alternatives to the Drug War. You will find
the list of participating organizations, contact information
for events already being planned and the coalition's
declaration at http://www.stopthedrugwar.org and
http://www.legalize.org. (Note that the Coalition's
position is not specifically legalization, though many of
the member organizations, including DRCNet, do have that
position. All individuals and organizations who feel that
the War on Drugs as it is currently conducted is harmful or
wrong, are welcome and encouraged to join. Organizations
planning events may decide whatever focus or spin to put on
their own efforts.)

If you are a member of an organization concerned about one
or more aspects of the Drug War, your organization can help
make the Global Coalition against the Drug War a success.
Please join the coalition, co-sign the declaration with us,
and, if possible, participate in the 1998 Global Days
against the Drug War.

Participating organizations are encouraged to plan their own
version of the 1998 Global Days Against the Drug War, under
their own identity and name. In the next several weeks, the
coalition will issue press releases with the names of all
the organizations that have joined the coalition.

On behalf of the Global Coalition for Alternatives to the
Drug War, with best regards,

Kevin Zeese (kevzeese@laser.net)
President, Common Sense for Drug Policy Foundation
Adam Smith (ajsmith@intr.net)
Associate Director, Drug Reform Coordination Network
Harry Bego (hbebo@knoware.nl)
Coordinator, Global Days Against the Drug War

To join the coalition, or learn more about it, visit



Never, as far as anyone can remember, has a presidentially-
appointed advisory council passed a resolution of "no
confidence" in the administration which appointed them, but
that is exactly what the President's Advisory Council on
AIDS did this week (3/17). And they did it unanimously.

"We are angry," council chair Dr. Scott Hitt told reporters
at a press conference called to announce the Council's twin
resolution. "In 1995, at the White House Conference on
AIDS, the President gave his word to us that he would do
whatever it took to reduce new infections down to zero.
Thirteen months ago, Sandra Thurman was appointed Director
of AIDS policy. At that time Ms. Thurman pledged to 'follow
the science' in determining the federal response to the AIDS
crisis. Well, the science is in... and it has been in for
some time. The scientific community has reached the
conclusion the needle exchange is a vital part of an overall
strategy to stem the spread of AIDS. And yet this
administration has failed to act on the issue of needle
exchange. During that time thousands of people have become
needlessly infected with HIV, and thousands will die as a

Standing behind Dr. Hitt, all 30 members of the Advisory
Council nodded in agreement. Less than 24 hours prior to
the press conference, they had voted unanimously to pass a
two-pronged resolution. The first part was a resolution of
"no confidence" in the administration's "commitment and
willingness to achieve the President's stated goal of
'reducing the number of new infections annually until there
are no new infections,'" and the second urged that Secretary
of Health and Human Services Donna Shalala "issue an
immediate determination declaring the efficacy of needle
exchange programs in preventing the spread of HIV while not
encouraging the use of illegal drugs." The Secretary is
required to make such a determination before federal AIDS-
prevention funds -- already in the hands of states and
localities -- can be used to fund the programs.

Dr. Hitt, addressing the issue of the impact of syringe
exchange availability on drug use, told reporters, "Every
credible study has determined that syringe exchange does not
lead to increased drug use. The National Institutes of
Health has determined that the 'preponderance of evidence
shows that syringe exchange participants show no change or a
decrease in use.'"

Insiders believe that there is much support within the
administration for lifting the ban, but that several key
policy advisors and officials have warned the President
against it. The wildcard within the administration seems to
be Drug Czar Barry McCaffrey. While it is believed that
McCaffrey opposes syringe exchange, he has yet to make a
public statement one way or the other on the issue. The
prospect of such a statement, and the political obstacles
which would be presented in the face of McCaffrey's public
opposition to lifting the ban, seemed to weigh on the minds
of several people in attendance. "We do not believe that
the Drug Czar ought to be imposing himself on issues of
health policy. This is a decision reserved for the
Secretary of Health and Human Services, and we are urging
her to make it based upon science and health policy
considerations" said Dr. Hitt.

Ronald Johnson, a member of the Council and the Managing
Director of Public Policy at Gay Men's Health Crisis in New
York, told reporters, "IV drug use is the driving force
behind new HIV infections. Over 50% of new infections are
injection-related. In addition, the overwhelming majority
of new infections are occurring among African Americans and
Latinos. We will not control this disease until we reduce
its spread among drug users and those who come into contact
with them."

According to Dr. Hitt, lifting the federal ban would have an
impact beyond bringing federal dollars into new and existing
programs. "There is a lot of moral authority behind an
official determination by the Secretary. Such action would
very likely increase the flow of private money into these
programs." Asked for his thoughts about the process which
led to the resolution, Dr. Hitt told The Week Online, "We
felt very strongly that we needed to take decisive action.
It's the first time, as far as I know, that a body such as
this has passed a no-confidence resolution against an
administration, so we see it as a very strong message.
We're aware that this action has spurred activity within the
administration and we're hopeful that a decision is made to
do the right thing. The science is there... it's
indisputable. Whatever the political reasoning has been
behind this prolonged inaction, the time has come for the
administration to act in the interests of American citizens
and the public health."

But as much as advocates would like to separate syringe
exchange from drug policy, the fact remains that the issue
has long been a victim of Drug War rhetoric and posturing.
This point has been illustrated again and again by those who
oppose the programs on the premise that they will somehow
legitimize or encourage drug use. Earlier this month in
Colorado, for example, State Republican Chair Steve Curtis
issued a direct threat that any state house Republican who
voted in favor of a bill to legalize syringe exchange would
face party-funded opposition in their next primary. The
bill was killed in a House committee, 7-4 along party lines,
despite strong support from the entire city government of
Denver, including the Mayor and the District Attorney, who
want to start a program in their city, and despite the fact
that it was Republicans who successfully sponsored the bill
in the Senate.

(http://www.drcnet.org/rapid/1998/3-13.html#coloradonep and

An AP story on Monday (3/16) quoted Melissa Skolfield of the
Department of Health and Human Services as saying that
Secretary Shalala was awaiting the results of additional
federal studies on needle exchange before making a
determination. On Wednesday however a spokesperson for the
Department of Health and Human Services told the Week
Online, "We're not waiting for any further studies. We are
continuing, as before, to review the existing information
and we have not yet made a determination as to whether or
not syringe exchange leads to increased drug use. There is
no timetable for the completion of that process."

Long-time AIDS activist Keith Cylar, co-executive director
of Housing Works Inc., a full-service harm-reduction
service-provider in New York, told The Week Online, "In view
of the short-term goal of getting the federal ban lifted,
it's understandable that people want to take the syringe-
exchange issue out of the context of drug policy. The
reality is, however, that the Drug War is a war on AIDS
patients, and on people at risk of infection, as well as a
war on African Americans and Latinos and poor folks in
general. It doesn't make a lot of sense to say 'well, we
need the funding so that we can save these people's lives --
get them stabilized and to a point where they are ready to
help themselves -- but we'll ignore the fact that a lot of
our clients' problems stem from operating in and around a
black market and the ongoing prospect of imprisonment.'"

Cylar continued, "I'm not questioning the strategy of the
Council, given the short-term goal they are after. But the
fact is that the underlying problem is a national policy
which has demonized drug users and which treats them like
animals unfit to live. Politicians are going to continue to
allow people to die rather than have to exchange their Drug
War rhetoric for reality-based approaches. Rhetoric is much
easier to sell, there are no nuances, no gray areas. But
that's true for both sides. The time is coming when the
rhetoric of complicity -- saying 'the drug war's OK except
for the little piece that affects me' - is not going to cut
it anymore."

[DRCNet reported last week, three days before the AP story,
that the Council was considering such action, scooping the
major media for the second time in 15 days. (Colorado on
2/27 was the first.) Hmm... sounds like a good reason to...
become a member! (http://www.drcnet.org/drcreg.html) See
for this report as well as an interview with AIDS Council
member Robert Fogel.]



A study released this week (3/16) conclusively shows that
addiction treatment is as effective in treating substance
abuse as established treatments for asthma, diabetes and
hypertension are in controlling those disorders. The study
also found that treatment was an effective anti-crime
measure and was substantially less costly than putting
addicted persons in prison.

The study was sponsored by Physician Leadership on National
Drug Policy (PLNDP), a group comprised of 37 distinguished
physicians including high ranking officials from the Reagan,
Bush and Clinton administrations. Members include Louis
Sullivan, M.D., Secretary of Health and Human Services under
president Bush, Edward Brandt, M.D., Assistant Secretary of
HHS under president Reagan, and David Kessler, M.D., former
Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration under
President Clinton. The group also includes a former Surgeon
General, a Nobel laureate, and the editors of the New
England Journal of Medicine and the Journal of the American
Medical Association. The group's director is David Lewis,
M.D., who is also the Director of the Center for Alcohol and
Addictive Studies at Brown University.

Released concomitantly was a survey of American opinion on
the subject of treatment and drug policy. That survey,
which compiled and analyzed data from over 100 separate
opinion polls taken between 1951 and 1997, found that
Americans' perception of the effectiveness of treatment has
actually fallen, and with it, the desire to see more
spending in that area. In 1990, 65% of Americans felt that
more money needed to be spent on treatment, while in 1996
only 53% felt that way.

David Lewis, M.D., director of Physician Leadership on
National Drug Policy, told The Week Online, "First of all,
the reception of the report by the panel was extremely
positive, which was very important. The response thus far
politically has also been excellent. Obviously, having the
two reports come out together gave everyone the opportunity
to see the discrepancy between our findings on the
effectiveness of addiction treatment and the public's
perception of that effectiveness. This juxtaposition
highlights the fact that the public is addressing this issue
on the basis of stereotypes, fear and myths, rather than on
science and information. I am extremely pleased that the
debate is becoming more public and more open and that we can
finally begin to discuss and to address these issues

NOTE: On Wednesday, 3/18, ABC's Nightline with Ted Koppel
featured the Physician's Leadership group and their
conclusions. Koppel, interviewing a U.S Representative and
a Drug Court judge, pushed the envelope, asking several
times that if we are really taking the position that
addiction is a disease to be dealt with medically like any
other, than what basis is there for putting these people in
prison (in the absence of other offenses like violence or
property crime), and isn't decriminalization of drugs the
logical extension of this argument?

Please take a moment to visit the ABC News web site at
http://www.abcnews.com/onair/ and drop them a note (click
on "email") congratulating them for a wonderful job, and
asking that they continue to cover the Drug War with such
honesty and intelligence. A transcript of the 3/18 show is
available from that page, or directly at

Physician Leadership on National Drug Policy has a web site
at http://center.butler.brown.edu/plndp/. Physicians can
register through the site as PLNDP Associates, to endorse
PLNDP's consensus statement and receive updates on the
organization's activities and the issue.



Um... can you say civil war? In California this week
(3/18), the first shots were fired in a battle over one of
the most fundamental issues of American-style democracy.
That is, to what lengths, and over what issues, can or
should the power of the federal government be used to thwart
the will of the people and their local representatives?
That the issue at the heart of a growing dispute putting
local elected officials and the federal government at odds.

As the federal government this week prepares for the opening
of its civil case against six medical marijuana outlets in
California on March 24, the mayors of four California
cities, San Francisco, Oakland, West Hollywood and Santa
Cruz sent similar letters to President Clinton urging him to
drop the federal suit and to "work with state and local
officials to find an amenable solution that will put
patients first." Such cooperation seems unlikely, however,
in light of the federal government's hard line approach to
the issue since the passage of 215.

In San Francisco, where over 80% of residents voted in favor
of Proposition 215 (the November '96 ballot initiative which
legalized medicinal marijuana in the state), popular Mayor
Willie Brown published an op-ed titled "Defending the Right
to Medical Marijuana," in which he called for a moratorium
on federal enforcement of "marijuana laws that interfere
with locally regulated operation of cannabis patient clubs
and allow patients access to their medicine." He concluded
by saying, "Californians with life-threatening diseased
shouldn't have to suffer a world of pain while their elected
representatives work to find a middle ground between local
discretion and federal supremacy."

Adding fuel to the fire this week were San Francisco
District Attorney Terence Hallinan and California's Attorney
General Dan Lungren. Hallinan has submitted a "friend of
the court" brief in support of the clubs in the federal
case. That brief notes that as a last resort, he would
consider having San Francisco's health department distribute
marijuana to patients. The brief was joined this week by
the Oakland DA's office at the direction of the Oakland City
Council. Lungren, who is running in the state's Republican
gubernatorial primary to become the Republican nominee for
governor, and who is opposed in that race by San Francisco
cultivators' club operator Dennis Peron, intimated to the LA
Times that he would uphold the law, even arresting San
Francisco health workers if it came to that. The federal
action has also been officially opposed by the Fairfax City
Council and the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors.

Mike Nisperos of Oakland's Crime and Public Safety Committee
told The Week Online that the city's government was working
with the police to develop standards for medical marijuana.
"I think that it's clear that the cities involved are
committed to providing well-regulated access to marijuana
for those who are using it medicinally. We are now in the
process of setting up a set of guidelines -- how much
marijuana can legitimately be possessed or grown, how the
police will make determinations upon finding marijuana, etc.
-- that everyone, the advocates, the police, our DA Tom
Orloff, can live with. We're hopeful that in the end, we'll
be able to work with the federal government so that access
can be provided."

On Thursday (3/19) however, Attorney General Janet Reno
responded ominously to the mayors' pleas, saying that "we
will enforce the law." But Michael Katz, Director of San
Francisco's health department, said that the city has "an
absolute commitment" to patients' access to medicinal

Stay tuned.

A rally in defense of safe access to medical marijuana,
sponsored by the Medical Marijuana Patients' and Caregivers'
Fund, will be held at the San Francisco Federal Building,
450 Golden Gate Ave., Tuesday March 24th, the opening day of
the federal case against the buyers' clubs, from 12 to 1pm.
For further information, please contact Dale Gieringer,
California NORML, at (415) 563-5858, or canorml@igc.apc.org.



A ballot proposal which would amend the state constitution
to allow for the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes was
filed in Nevada on March 13 by a representative of the group
Americans for Medical Rights. The proposal would allow
Nevada residents who suffer from cancer, AIDS, glaucoma,
multiple sclerosis and other "chronic or debilitating
conditions" to possess and use marijuana with a doctor's

Two votes are necessary to amend the Nevada Constitution,
but first, supporters must collect over 46,000 signatures in
order to get the proposal on the ballot. If they succeed,
and if the voters pass the measure in '98, it will go to the
voters again, for final approval, in November of '99. Dave
Fratello, spokesman for Americans for Medical Rights, told
The Week Online, "signature gathering should begin within a
week or so. We have until August to gather the signatures,
and Nevada law stipulates that we need a certain number from
each county. But we're confident that we will meet the
requirements and pass medical marijuana in Nevada."


6. HEICKLEN UPDATE: Penn State Professor Still Challenging
- Alex Morgan for DRCNet

Julian Heicklen, the retired Penn State Professor Emeritus,
who is in the third month of a civil disobedience campaign,
was arrested at his State College home Wednesday afternoon
after angrily walking out of the Centre County Courthouse in
Bellefonte, Pennsylvania a few hours earlier.

Heicklen's Preliminary Hearing on marijuana possession
charges stemming from the Feb 12 protest was scheduled for 1
PM, when the court failed to call his case by 1:25 pm the
professor left. Heicklen's case was finally called at
3:00pm and Judge Alan Sinclair issued a Bench Warrant for
his arrest.

At 4:20 pm, he was arrested at his home by three police
officers and brought before District Magistrate Carmen
Prestia in State College for "Failure to Appear." Dr.
Heicklen told Prestia, "You arrested the wrong man. I
appeared but the judge didn't."

Magistrate Prestia explained that all hearings are scheduled
for 1:00 pm and a defendant is expected to wait until the
case is called. He said that this was the procedure for

Heicklen said he told Judge Prestia that, "You treat
everyone like pigs. That's not right, stop doing that. I
go to any other professional's office and they take me in a
few minutes...I was delivering Meals On Wheels from 10:30 to
12:30. I raced to Bellefonte to be there at 1:00pm and I
didn't have any lunch."

"The Judge walks in at 1:20. He doesn't introduce himself.
He doesn't apologize for being late and then he takes
another case. I left. I absolutely will not be treated
like that under no circumstances whatsoever...I was madder
than hell and the court has to change its ways."

Heicklen said that he had written to the Court Administrator
explaining that he was bringing his own court stenographer
and that he was paying her by the hour. He asked the court
to schedule his hearing within 15 minutes of when he would
be called but the court refused.

Heicklen told Prestia that, "I just don't deal that way and
I won't deal that way in the future either."

Magistrate Prestia dismissed the Failure to Appear charge
and rescheduled Heicklen's Hearing for next Wednesday

Heicklen said he told Prestia that he didn't know if he
would appear and that he refused to sign bail papers. The
Magistrate was apparently dismayed at the professor's
attitude and he simply let Heicklen free on his own
recognizance without signing anything or promising to comply
with court orders to appear.

The following day, Thursday March 19, Heicklen held the 8th
Marijuana Smokeout at the Main Gate of Penn State, located
in downtown State College. Heicklen and co-defendant Alan
Gordon each smoked a joint. The Penn State Police were
present but they didn't arrest or cite anyone although they
did grab a "roach" that the professor laid down on a table
beside his megaphone. Penn State Police later told the
World On Line that they would test the roach and arrest
Heicklen if it was positive for marijuana. When told of the
impending test Heicklen said, "If it doesn't test positive,
I'll have words with my dealer."

The weekly rallies have evolved into a series of anti-Drug
War "teach-ins" similar to the instructional rallies on the
Vietnam War that were held during the Sixties. Referring to
the protests as "seminars," Heicklen has been assigning
"homework" to his supporters. He started off a few weeks
ago asking them to read the Bill Of Rights. In subsequent
weeks he assigned the Declaration of Independence and then
the US Constitution, and this week the Constitution of

After introductory statements by the professor, Alan Gordon
and Ken Krawchuck- the Libertarian nominee for the
Pennsylvania Governor's race, they took questions and
allowed others to address the crowd of about 125 supporters.

One student said, "I've been coming here week after week.
At first I wasn't sure why you guys were doing this but I've
learned a lot. You question authority -- authority doesn't
like to be questioned. If you're educated and know what
you're talking about, authority doesn't like that
either...I've learned a lot and I want to thank you for
that. I'll keep coming out and supporting you guys."

Heicklen responded saying, "Thank you very much and don't
forget to do the homework assignment...if you do the
assignment every week you'll learn about the law and it's
not just academic. It will protect you. People come up to
me all the time and say I got arrested for this and that.
They put themselves in situations that make their cases
hopeless when they didn't have to... If you know what to do,
you can be protected. I hope you continue to come. We have
to show the powers-that-be that this is a movement that
isn't going to go away. They're going to have to deal with
us...and eventually (they'll) give in."

Heicklen and three co-defendants have hearings on Wednesday
March 25. The professor hasn't decided if he will attend
but he did say that if they make him wait again then he will
leave again, even if they arrest him again. "I won't put up
with it, its the rudeness and arrogance of tyranny."

Alan Gordon, the fifth co-defendant with the most serious
charges had his Preliminary Hearing last week (March 11).
He was bound over for trial on charges of possession of
marijuana, possession of marijuana with intent to deliver
and possession of drug paraphernalia. Gordon is
representing himself at all court proceedings and will be
using a medicinal marijuana/medical necessity defense.



Parents in Murieta, California might be a bit surprised to
find that the parenting classes being offered by their
school district feature police officers as instructors.
They may be even more surprised, however, to hear that
according to the police, the best way for a parent to
address the issue of his or her youthful drug use is to lie
to their kids.

"If your child asks if you used drugs when you were in high
school, say no." So says Sgt. Scott Attebery of the
Murrieta Valley police force. Attebery is also a father of
three and a member of the Murrieta Valley Unified School
District board of trustees. "Do not admit that you smoked
marijuana as a kid" he adds. "If you do, you will get that
thrown back at you at 90 miles per hour."



A University of Illinois study released this week, like
virtually every previous study on the topic, found that the
popular D.A.R.E. program, in which police officers teach 3rd
graders about drugs, does not work. Disturbingly, the study
actually found higher rates of drug use among D.A.R.E
graduates than among their peers.

"It hurts me to sit here and tell you that D.A.R.E. does not
work," said Dr. Dennis Rosenbaum, head of the criminal
justice department at the University of Illinois. "But it's
time for us to go back to the drawing board and figure out
how it can be improved or what better ways we can spend our
money on drug education in this country."

For more information on the Illinois study, see
http://www.msnbc.com/NEWS/151731.asp. For more general
background, visit DRCNet's D.A.R.E. Topics in Depth section
at http://www.drcnet.org/DARE.



Yet another General Accounting Office report has found a
stunning lack of results -- on the streets, where it counts
-- from U.S.-led international drug eradication and
interdiction efforts. The GAO testimony, given before the
U.S. House of Representatives' Subcommittee on National
Security, International Affairs and Criminal Justice,
released on March 12, sums up the record:

"Despite long-standing efforts and expenditures of billions
of dollars, illegal drugs still flood the United States.
Although U.S. counternarcotics efforts have resulted in the
arrest of major drug traffickers, the seizure of large
amounts of drugs, and the eradication of illicit drug crops,
they have not materially reduced the availability of drugs
in the United States."

The full document is available in Acrobat format at
http://www.gao.gov/new.items/ns98116t.pdf, or can be
ordered through the GAO's web site at http://www.gao.gov.
The report is titled "Drug Control: Status of U.S.
International Counternarcotics Activities" and has
identifying number T-NSIAD-98-116.



- Marc Brandl for DRCNet

At a news conference in Tillsonburg last Friday (3/13),
Canadian Federal Health Minister Allan Rock answered
reporters' questions about medical marijuana, saying he is
taking the issue "very seriously," according to the London
Free Press. The Minister was in town to announce the
renewal of the legal planting of hemp in Canada.
Tillsonburg is also the home of medical marijuana
activist/patient Lynn Harichy, who suffers from multiple

Harichy, who is in the process of setting up a temporary
cannabis buyers club in her home town, until it is
"available through doctors and pharmaceutical companies,"
spoke with The Week Online about the meeting. "When I got
there they said this meeting was by invitation only. I said
I need to get in to talk with him. A reporter recognized me
and took my picture. Other reporters started asking
questions. Soon a girl came up and grabbed my arm and said
come this way. When we were away from the reporters she
said, 'he's expecting you.' I said 'who.' 'Allan Rock' was
the reply.

Harichy said the meeting went well and that she was
impressed by Rock's character. "He was very compassionate,
I told him I am opening up a cannabis buyers club for people
to get affordable marijuana through us and not off the
street. I don't want any of them to be harmed. Rock said
'Yes' and that he is, 'very, very close to a resolution.'"

If the laws are not changed, Harichy will face a trial in
June or July for a possession charge. Alan Young, the
Osgoode Hall law professor who took Chris Clay's
constitutional challenge of marijuana prohibition to court
has agreed to represent her.

Harichy urged people to "write to their representatives and
don't give up. Stop the propaganda. Pressure our lawmakers
to change this ridiculous law."

Donations to Lynn Harichy's defense fund can be made to:

Prof. Alan Young
York University
Osgoode Hall Law
4700 Keele St.
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3



For the past six months, British Home Secretary Jack Straw
has claimed to be open to debate on national drug policy,
even as he has repeatedly stated that he was strongly
opposed to the legalization of cannabis. Further, Mr. Straw
has adamantly maintained that no Royal Commission study need
be commenced on the subject. While this intransigence has
left him in poor stead among the growing number of Brits who
favor reform, it appears that Mr. Straw will soon face even
more formidable urging. A study released last week (3/14)
revealed that fully two thirds of new British MPs favor the
appointment of a Royal Commission, and that more than one in
five of the new MP's have, at one time or another, ingested
an illicit drug.

The survey, which afforded responding MP's with total
anonymity, was conducted by London Weekend Television. 243
Members of Parliament who are serving their first year were
queried. 64% of respondents admitted having friends or
associates who used drugs, and 51% of the MP's said that the
current laws on cannabis were too harsh, while only 1% said
that they were not harsh enough.

Labour MP Paul Flynn, who has openly campaigned for the
decriminalization of cannabis, told the Independent on
Sunday, "This is splendid news and very surprising. In
effect it means that the current prohibitionist policies
against cannabis in this country are doomed."

NEWSFLASH: The BBC World Service (shortwave) will present a
special program about marijuana late TONIGHT (Friday, Mar.
20, 1998) at 04:30 UTC (11:30pm Friday night New York time).
This program can be heard via shortwave and perhaps also via
the Internet. (See http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/ for
more details on reception. The BBC probably also has
satellite transmission, and other Internet sources might be
available.) Text from the announcement follows:

"Later this month, supporters of the Legalize Cannabis
campaign will be marching through London. Although, as you
may know, individual use of cannabis has been legal for some
years in the Netherlands and in a number of states in
America, most European governments are wary of
decriminalization, so in tomorrow's edition of Insight,
Sophie Wigram (sp?) will be reporting on whether efforts to
legalize the drug are likely to succeed.

"Cannabis: Should it be left to the individual or does
society need to be protected by the law?" -- the subject for
Insight tomorrow at 04:30 Greenwich Mean Time here on the
BBC World Service." The program should last about 15



Alfonso Valdivieso resigned last year as Colombia's chief
federal prosecutor in order to run for the presidency of
that troubled nation. Late last week (3/13) however,
Valdivieso withdrew his candidacy after what has been
described by the Associated Press as a "lackluster
campaign". Valdivieso's candidacy had been welcomed by US
officials concerned that Horacio Serpa will win the next
Presidential election. Serpa, a close aide and the hand-
picked successor to current Colombian President Ernesto
Samper, is believed to be corrupt, with ties to major drug
trafficking organizations. Samper himself has been accused
by the US and others of taking over $6 million in campaign
contributions from traffickers. Valdivieso has thrown his
support behind Conservative Party candidate Andres Pastrana.



Schools Across Malaysia will soon be receiving urine-testing
equipment along with the government's permission to randomly
test any and all students for drug use. Any student who
tests positive will immediately be re-tested, and if the
second test confirms the positive, will be sent away to a
"rehabilitation center". The move comes in reaction to a
perceived rise in drug use among teens.

Malaysia's increased teen drug use comes despite an
extremely punitive national policy, including a mandatory
death sentence for anyone caught trafficking in drugs.
Police report that last year over 1,750 people were arrested
for trafficking.



"We will follow the science." These words have become a
standard answer to almost any question put to the Clinton
administration about drug policy. Whether the issue is
medical marijuana, needle exchange or addiction itself, the
administration likes nothing better than to nod toward the
scientific community and to intimate that, hey, we're just
the messengers up here, we're just implementing what the
experts tell us is right, there's a process and we're
following it. But more often than not, both the actions and
the spending of the administration tell a far different
story. When it comes to drug policy, there is nothing that
is more damning of the policies of the Clinton
Administration than the facts, scientific or otherwise. And
at no time has that been made more apparent than this past

On Tuesday (3/17) the Presidential Advisory Council on AIDS,
appointed by President Clinton, unanimously passed a
resolution of "no confidence" in the administration's
commitment to follow the science in its efforts to stem the
spread of the disease. At issue is the long, politically-
driven delay to make a determination, long-ago arrived at by
every serious scientific body to study the issue, that
needle exchange saves lives by reducing the spread of AIDS
without a concomitant increase in drug use. Such a
determination is a prerequisite to allowing sates and
localities to use their federal anti-AIDS dollars to fund
syringe exchanges. The World Health Organization, the
Centers for Disease Control, the National Institutes of
Health, the American Public Health Association, and even the
World Bank, to name just a few, have concluded that these
programs are vital to stopping new infections, over 50% of
which are injection-related. But the Department of Health
and Human Services, and Secretary of HHS Donna Shalala, are
still "reviewing the evidence." And every day, this
preventable disease spreads.

Never before has a council appointed by a president issued a
resolution of "no confidence" in its appointer. "We are
angry" said chairman Dr. Scott Hitt. And they're angry
still. Because the science has long been in, because the
only facts mitigating against lifting the ban are political,
and because people are becoming infected every day as the
administration continues to weigh the value of lives lost
against the political risk involved in saving them. And the
lives, mostly African American and Latino lives, keep coming
up on the wrong side of the equation.

And then California this week, the mayors of four cities,
including Oakland and San Francisco, sent letters to the
administration asking that a federal lawsuit being pursued
against six medical marijuana buyers' clubs be dropped, and
that the cities and localities of California be given the
time and support necessary to develop and implement rational
regulations for the distribution of marijuana to patients
who use it medically. California's voters passed
Proposition 215 in November of '96, despite the warnings and
urgings of the federal government. In the time since, the
administration has done everything it could think of,
including threatening the careers of doctors who dared even
discuss marijuana with their patients, to see that it is not

"The science" they say. "We need to follow the scientific
process." But given the fact that there is ample support
for medical marijuana in the scientific community, that many
substances, including morphine and penicillin, never went
through any scientific approval process, and that no
credible science has ever found the use of marijuana more
harmful than putting sick people in jail, the words, once
again, ring hollow. The local communities are so aware of
the suffering of their citizens, of AIDS patients, of cancer
and glaucoma patients, of MS and chronic pain patients, that
they have expressed their willingness to stand up to the
feds, even to distribute the marijuana themselves. And what
is the administration's answer to them? "We will enforce
the law" said Attorney General Janet Reno. And you can be
sure that she meant federal law.

On Wednesday (3/18) a group of 37 of the nation's top
M.D.'s, including a former Surgeon General, numerous high-
ranking health officials from the Reagan, Bush and Clinton
administrations, and the editors of the New England Journal
of Medicine and the Journal of the American Medical
Association, under the banner of Physician Leadership on
National Drug Policy, released a report calling for
treatment, rather than prison, for people with substance
abuse problems. Treatment, they said, is every bit as
effective in dealing with substance abuse as is treatment
for other chronic medical conditions such as diabetes,
asthma and hypertension. Further, they said, drug treatment
is a more effective and more economical crime-prevention
strategy than prison.

Faced with this stunning rebuke to the central component of
the Drug War by such an exalted group, Drug Czar Barry
McCaffrey immediately issued a statement praising their
findings and stating that the administration was committed
to treatment... and science. But such statements fly in the
face of the fact that of over $17 billion in federal anti-
drug spending (not including incarceration costs), less than
15% goes to treatment. The statement also ignores the fact
that the U.S. has become the world's greatest per capita
incarcerator, primarily by arresting and jailing non-violent
drug offenders.

There is no denying that doing the right thing, following
the science on drug policy, is fraught with political risk.
Most Americans are woefully uninformed of the realities of
drugs and drug policy, and they are wary, even afraid of
alternatives to all-out war. That this is the result of
years of propaganda and hysteria promulgated by politicians
to drum up votes is largely irrelevant. That such
rhetorical and political tactics are still in vogue however,
that they promise to intensify even as the call to science
and rationality gets louder and more convincing, is far more
important to the thinking of those in power.

"We will follow the science." It is the cry of an
administration that refuses to take responsibility for the
damage it is causing. An administration that knows little
else but following on this issue, rather than leading. So
they praise the science, they ignore the science, they lie
about the science, and they keep on keepin' on, arresting
millions of Americans, hastening the spread of disease, and
denying relief to the afflicted in some sort of twisted
morality play which demands that people die in order to be
saved from themselves. It is easier than addressing the
nuances of a complex issue. It is easier than educating
voters. The administration, on the issue of drug policy, is
determined to follow the science. Apparently they meant
political science.

Adam J. Smith
Associate Director




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