------------------------------------------------------------------- Oregon Ballot Initiative Would Amend Constitution To Guarantee Medical Practitioners' Right To Prescribe Medicinal Plants (Ballot Title, Summary, And Text Filed In Salem By Oregonians For Personal Privacy)Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 23:44:29 -0800 From: opp
Organization: Oregonians for Personal Privacy To: email@example.com Subject: Re: CanPat - AMR medical in OR BALLOT TITLE AMENDS CONSTITUTION: CREATES RIGHT TO PRESCRIBE HERBS, PLANTS; BARS RESTRICTIONS ON COMMERCE RESULT OF "YES" VOTE: "Yes" vote creates right to prescribe herbs and plants, including marijuana; bars restrictions on commerce. RESULT OF "NO" VOTE: "No" vote rejects proposal: creating right to prescribe herbs, plants, including marijuana; banning commercial restrictions. SUMMARY: Amends Constitution. Provides that it shall be legal for any medical practitioner to prescribe or provide any herb or seed bearing plant, including any of its elutants. Would allow medical practitioner, under state law, to prescribe or provide plants and herbs that now are illegal, including marijuana. Would not affect federal restrictions, regulations. Measure states that commerce in plants, herbs, and their elutants may not be hindered or restricted by any legislation, regulation, or licensing authority rule. Commerce can be prohibited only by constitutional amendment. Certified by Attorney General on March 18, 1998. s/s Janet A. Metcalf AMENDMENT "IT SHALL BE LEGAL FOR ANY MEDICAL PRACTITIONER TO PRESCRIBE OR PROVIDE ANY HERB OR SEED BEARING PLANT, INCLUDING ALL OF ITS ELUTANTS; COMMERCE IN SAID PRODUCTS SHALL NOT BE HINDERED NOR RESTRICTED BY ANY LEGISLATION, REGULATION, OR LICENSING AUTHORITY RULE; AND CAN ONLY BE PROHIBITED BY CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT." OREGONIANS for PERSONAL PRIVACY MEDICAL HEALTH RIGHTS POST OFFICE BOX 24715 EUGENE, OREGON 97402 (541) 485-4526 firstname.lastname@example.org
------------------------------------------------------------------- Oregon Ballot Initiative Would Amend Constitution To Guarantee Right Of All Adults To Possess, Consume, Manufacture Marijuana Privately (Ballot Title, Summary, And Text Filed In Salem By Oregonians For Personal Privacy) Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 23:54:14 -0800 From: opp (email@example.com) Organization: Oregonians for Personal Privacy To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: CanPat - AMR medical in OR BALLOT TITLE AMENDS CONSTITUTION: PERMITS ADULTS TO MANUFACTURE, POSSESS, CONSUME CANNABIS (MARIJUANA) IN PRIVATE RESULT OF "YES" VOTE: "Yes" vote permits citizens 21 or older to manufacture, possess, consume cannabis (marijuana) in private. RESULT OF "NO" VOTE: "No" vote retains existing statutory prohibitions against manufacture, possession of certain types of cannabis (marijuana). SUMMARY: Amends constitution. Oregon state laws currently prohibit the possession, manufacture, and delivery of certain types of cannabis that are commonly known as marijuana. Measure would amend Oregon Constitution to permit citizen 21 years old or older to possess, manufacture, and consume, in private, all types of cannabis and its byproducts, including marijuana. Measure would not affect current Oregon statutes that prohibit the delivery of marijuana. [TEXT] "THE MANUFACTURE, POSSESSION, AND CONSUMPTION, IN PRIVATE, OF THE PLANT CANNABIS AND ALL OF ITS FAMILIES AND BYPRODUCTS SHALL BE LEGAL FOR ALL CITIZENS 21 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER." OREGONIANS for PERSONAL PRIVACY 420 POST OFFICE BOX 24715 EUGENE, OREGON 97402 (541) 485-4526 email@example.com THE ONLY WAY TO AMNESTY IS THROUGH LEGALIZATION
------------------------------------------------------------------- Man Shoots Self After Call To Police (Salem, Oregon, 'Statesman Journal' Says The Bend, Oregon, Man Died A Short Time After Deschutes County Deputies Arrived, Leaving Behind 52 Marijuana Plants Worth $100,000) Date: Wed, 01 Apr 1998 01:26:33 -0800 From: Paul Freedom (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: Cannabis Patriots (email@example.com) Subject: CanPat - Bizarre Pot Story! MAN SHOOTS SELF AFTER CALL TO POLICE Statesman Journal Salem, Oregon 3-31-98 BEND - A man apparently shot himself minutes after calling 911 to ask police to come retrieve his body at his house east of Bend. Kevin Wayne Gianino, 25, called Deschutes County's 911 dispatch center shortly after 3 p.m. Saturday. When they got to the scene, sheriff's deputies found the man barely alive. They also uncovered a large marijuana growing operation. Gianino died a short time later. There were 52 marijuana plants and growing equipment. The potential harvest had an estimated street value of $100,000, said sheriff's Capt. Pete Wanless. *** HOW TO SUBSCRIBE TO CANNABIS PATRIOTS Send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with subscribe cannabis-patriots-l in the body of the message. Or e-mail me if you have trouble or someone you want me to subscribe! Paul "Freedom" Stone
------------------------------------------------------------------- Police Raid San Jose Pot Center, Files Seized ('Spartan Daily,' The San Jose State University Newspaper, Quotes Peter Baez's Attorney, BJ Fadem, Saying Baez Is Innocent And There Is A Clear Verification From The Doctor In The Client's File - And That All 270 Of The Santa Clara County Medical Cannabis Center's Clients Are Going To Seek The ACLU's Help In Filing A Civil Action Against The San Jose Police Department For Violating Patients' Right To Confidentiality) Date: Thu, 9 Apr 1998 17:11:45 -0700 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: US CA: Police Raid SJ Pot Center, Files Seized Sender: email@example.com Newshawk: Joel W. Johnson (firstname.lastname@example.org) Source: Spartan Daily (San Jose State University Newspaper - CA) Contact: SDAILY@jmc.sjsu.edu Pubdate: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 Author: Ed Oberweiser POLICE RAID SJ POT CENTER, FILES SEIZED The Santa Clara County Medical Cannabis Center is under investigation after a March 23 raid by the San Jose Police Department. The police arrested Peter Baez, the center's co-founder and executive director, for one count of illegal sales of marijuana during the raid, according to Sgt. Chris Moore, San Jose Police spokesman. During the raid, the police seized all the center's client files and made copies, but returned them to the center so it could continue to operate, Moore said. Baez's attorney, BJ Fadem, a 1980 San Jose State University graduate, said Baez is innocent and there is a clear verification from the doctor in the client's file. Fadem said the police confiscated every single one of the center's client files with confidential medical information, but have not returned all the records to the center. Moore said a person who had no recommendations from any doctor for medicinal marijuana use was sold marijuana by the center. "We're really disappointed that this happened because the city has worked very hard along with the police department and the DA's office to make this happen (the medical cannabis center)," Moore said. A set of regulations governing the dispensing of medical marijuana was adopted by former San Jose Chief of Police Louis Cobarruviaz on May 14, 1997. Under the regulations, the center must keep the records of each client's illness, address, phone number and a dated record of a physician's recommendation for the medical use of marijuana. The doctor's recommendation for medicinal marijuana use must be renewed every six months. Moore said the raid was conducted after the investigation of a separate municipal court marijuana possession case. In that case, the defendant said in his defense that he had a doctor's recommendation for medical marijuana use. The defendant was a client of the county's medical cannabis center. The district attorney's office referred the case back to the police to investigate, according to Moore. During the investigation, the doctor's referred to by the defendant said they had never recommended marijuana use, Moore said. All 270 of the center's clients are going to ask the help of the American Civil Liberties Union in filing a civil action suit against the San Jose Police Department for violation of patient confidentiality, according to Fadem. Baez said in a March 27 press release that State Sen. John Vasconcellos called Mayor Susan Hammer, the San Jose Police Department and the District Attorney's office to protest Baez's arrest. "Our calls to each of those three entities were to gather information about what happened to help us formulate a response," said Vasconcellos' chief of staff, Rand Martin. Baez said he was concerned that documents supporting his innocence against the current charges and possible other charges the SJPD might bring against him won't be available for his defense. "The main thing here is the fact that they're claiming one thing and we believe the evidence is going to show completely the opposite," Fadem said. "They're not saying the center isn't in compliance with 215, they're just saying in this one particular incident they deviated." Proposition 215 is the initiative passed by California voters in November 1996 legalizing the medical use of marijuana. San Jose Deputy District Attorney Denise Raabe said there are no plans yet to close the center. She said they are only prosecuting the one charge against Baez. "If they comply with the law of Prop. 215 and the ordinances that have been enacted by the city of San Jose, then they are a lawful business and there's no problem with them remaining in business," Raabe said. On Feb. 27, California Attorney General Daniel Lungren's office issued a press release saying none of the existing California cannabis clubs were authorized to sell or distribute marijuana. "We've alerted all the DA's offices that cannabis clubs are illegal," said Matt Ross, a spokesman for Lungren's office. "We assume they will take the proper action against them." Ross refused to speculate what Lungren's office would do if the DA's don't prosecute the cannabis clubs. Raabe said there has been no contact from Lungren's office since the raid.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Juvenile Informants (Staff Editorial In 'Orange County Register' About The Death Of A 17-Year-Old Boy Coerced Into Being An Illegal Drug Informant By Police In Brea, California, Says Assemblyman Scott Baugh Is Working On A Bill To Outlaw Use Of Juvenile Informants) Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 16:53:47 -0800 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Joel W. Johnson) Subject: MN: US CA: Editorial: Juvenile Informants Sender: email@example.com Newshawk: John W.Black Source: Orange County Register (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.ocregister.com/ Pubdate: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 JUVENILE INFORMANTS Assemblyman Scott Baugh says he is "not interested in a draconian approach" to the issue of using young people as informants in drug cases. "But I do want to stop the use of juvenile informants in situations where they can be harmed or killed." That's why he is working on a bill to outlaw the practice in California. The legislative effort comes in the wake of the murder of 17-year-old Chad Macdonald of Yorba Linda after a trip to an alleged drug house in Norwalk. Although the Brea police (who provide police services or Yorba Linda) say Mr. MacDonald wasn't working for them that day, they do acknowledge that he did do some undercover buys after being caught in January with methamphetamine. Since announcing last week that he planned such a bill, Mr. Baugh's office has heard from numerous law enforcement agencies and juvenile justice experts, talked with Democratic state Sen. John Burton of San Francisco, who had also planned such a bill, and worked to refine the idea. The main complicating issue, they have discovered, is that police agencies do use juveniles in "sting" operations to catch people who sell cigarettes or alcohol to underage juveniles, and the agencies don't want to give up that capacity. The arguments have some validity. Cigarettes and alcohol are sold legally and openly to adults. Young people who decide to become involved in tobacco and alcohol "sting" operations usually volunteer rarely comes as a result of a legal problem, such as a drug possession arrest, which the police might use as leverage with the offender, asking for help on police business in exchange for a lighter penalty. And, there's hardly ever any danger in a young person going into a convenience or liquor store, asking for something reserved for adults, and seeing if the clerk "cards" them or not. We have doubts about using kids for cigarettes and alcohol, but there's little question that it's less inherently dangerous than asking them to immerse themselves in the criminal subculture of the drug world. When juveniles caught with drugs face charges that could lead to incarceration, they face a form of coercion that could cloud the judgment of many mature adults, let alone most teen-agers. Undercover work can lead to adrenaline flows and seem almost glamorous. However "streetwise" they might be, teen-agers could find themselves pulled into ever more dangerous activities. Assemblyman Baugh is not ready to urge a full-scale revision of the laws against drugs, as some of us are, in part because the nature of the laws requires police to stretch rules about searches of private places and rely on informers But he does say that "we shouldn't be asking teen-agers to compensate for our failure to prosecute the war on drugs successfully." Whether that means setting the minimum age for undercover informants (except in cigarette or alcohol "sting") at 18 or 21 is something he would be willing to see worked out through legislative give-and-take. His main concern is that law enforcement agencies and district attorney's offices in California not be in the business of putting juveniles into potentially dangerous undercover situations. There are arguments on the other side - some say using juveniles is the only way to check drug selling in or near schools - but they fade when measured against that priority. Scott Baugh's bill should be ready for hearings and the legislative process by the end of this week. We'll reserve some judgment until we've seen the final product, but unless it has some unexpected fatal flaw, it deserves support and swift enactment.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Election Chief Rules Petitions Come Up Short ('Associated Press' Notes Maine's Secretary Of State, Dan Gwadosky, Says Mainers For Medical Rights' Medical Marijuana Initiative Lacks Enough Signatures For The November 1998 Ballot - November 1999 Still A Possibility) Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 22:32:24 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: US ME: Wire: Election Chief Rules Petitions Come Up Short Sender: email@example.com Newshawk: "W.H.E.N." Source: Associated Press Pubdate: 31 March 1998 ELECTION CHIEF RULES PETITIONS COME UP SHORT AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) - A petition drive aimed at forcing a statewide vote to allow medical use of marijuana has come up short of valid signatures, and some of them appear to be forged, Maine's top election official said Tuesday. Secretary of State Dan Gwadosky said the attorney general's office is investigating the apparent violations, which also included some petitions being circulated by non-residents and non-registered voters. ``When the residence is the Scottish Inn in Bangor, you begin to wonder'' whether the petition circulator is a Maine resident, Gwadosky said during a news conference in his office. Gwadosky said the group Mainers for Medical Rights was well-financed with $125,000, most of it donated by a California-based group called Americans for Medical Rights. ``Not a penny here that we can detect so far is from the state of Maine,'' said Gwadosky. Gwadosky said he expects the group to appeal his decision to keep the question off the 1998 ballot. However, the organization still has time to collect enough valid signatures to qualify for the November 1999 ballot. Medical Rights leader Stephanie Hart of Sidney said she had not fully reviewed Gwadosky's report and had 10 days to do it. ``Over 68,000 Mainers signed our petition and they will get to vote on the medical marijuana issue, if not in 1998, then in 1999,'' said Hart. ``We are going to look at our options.'' At least 51,131 certified voters' signatures were needed to get the question on the November ballot. Of the 68,330 signatures submitted, 16,842 were invalidated by municipal officials because they were duplicates or were given by people not registered to vote. State officials invalidated another 5,665 signatures because of questions about circulators' residences and voting status, alterations to petitions, duplication of some names and other irregularities. Five people whose names appear on petitions have signed affidavits stating they had not signed the documents, Gwadosky said. With only 45,823 potentially valid signatures, the campaign fell 5,308 short of the minimum needed to force a vote this year. Had it met the minimum, the Legislature would have taken up the question first and approved it or sent it directly to voters. The question proposed by Hart's group asks, ``Should it be legal in Maine for a person to possess or grow marijuana for their own or another person's medical use?'' Supporters have until Jan. 21, 1999 to file enough valid signatures to qualify for next year's ballot. The number needed will be equal to 10 percent of the turnout in this year's gubernatorial election. But no signature older than a year can be counted. The campaign led by Hart is separate from one led by Don Christen, a marijuana-legalization activist from Madison. Christen has criticized the other group as part of a national movement financed by wealthy backers from outside of Maine. Americans for Medical Rights, previously known as Californians for Medical Rights, helped enact a law allowing medical use of marijuana in that state. Christen's group has not succeeded in forcing a vote on his group's proposal, which has fewer restrictions on who can use marijuana for medical purposes than the AMR question.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Video Online Of MS Patient Arrest (URL Posted For 'Video Of The Day' Captured From The 'Associated Press' Web Site Showing Cheryl Miller And Her Husband, Jim Miller, Being Arrested At The Washington, DC, Office Of California Representative Jim Rogan For Eating Cannabis During A Protest Against House Resolution 372)Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 16:08:25 EST Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: Dave Fratello
To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: Video online of MS patient arrest Video of the arrest of MS patient Cheryl Miller at the U.S. Capitol is on-line for the day today at AP's website -- it's the featured "Video of the day." My supposed 56k modem took a little over 5 minutes to fully download it. You can watch the first parts while the rest is coming through... http://wire.ap.org/APpackages/video/0331videoday.html Kudos for fine work to the MPP & other folks behind this event. . .
------------------------------------------------------------------- Reagan-Appointed Judge Refuses To Enforce Drug Laws ('Salon' Magazine Says Serious Acts Of Civil Disobedience Against The Nation's Drug Sentencing Laws Are Being Staged - By Prosecutors And Senior Judges) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Matt Elrod) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US DC: Reagan-appointed judge refuses to enforce drug laws Date: Thu, 09 Apr 1998 15:42:24 -0700 Lines: 143 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: "Frank S. World"
Source: Salon Magazine Contact: email@example.com Author: Bruce Shapiro Pubdate: 03/31/98 Website: http://www.salon1999.com/ Fax: 415 882 8731 REAGAN-APPOINTED JUDGE REFUSES TO ENFORCE HARSH U.S. DRUG LAWS Hell No, We won't throw away the key SERIOUS CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE AGAINST THE NATION'S DRUG SENTENCING LAWS ARE BEING STAGED -- BY PROSECUTORS AND SENIOR JUDGES. Quick: What furious debate over the parameters of morality, legality and personal behavior has the American political and judicial system been at vehement war with itself over? No, not the ever-morphing Clinton/Jones/Starr/Lewinsky/Willey scandal, but an issue likely to affect vastly more people. Drugs. Drug use, drug policy, drug enforcement. While the press has been consumed with Tailgate, slowly simmering discord over the war on illegal drugs has suddenly reached a rolling boil. Some skirmishes have filtered through to public consciousness. Last Monday it was Drug Czar vs. AIDS Czar: White House drug policy advisor Barry McCaffrey lambasted White House director of HIV policy Sandra Thurman's advocacy of federally funded sterile needle-exchange programs for addicts. Needle-exchange efforts, McCaffrey complained in a letter leaked to Congress, undermine "an unambiguous 'no use' message." The following day, it was California vs. the feds. The Justice Department went to court seeking an injunction shutting down six Northern California medical marijuana clubs, operating under the protective umbrella of Proposition 215 passed by state voters last November. Last week, four California mayors wrote to the White House demanding that the Justice Department "respect local expertise" on medical marijuana and abandon the crackdown. If Attorney General Janet Reno's shutdown of marijuana clubs moves forward, San Francisco District Attorney Terence Hallinan is threatening to employ city workers to distribute the drug to those who medically require it -- perhaps the most dramatic act of local law-enforcement defiance of the Justice Department since the days of racial segregation. But one of the most incendiary and startling confrontations has been conducted behind the scenes, in the normally staid chambers of the Washington, D.C., federal courts. The cast of characters: a crack addict and petty street-level dealer named Alvin Webb; U.S. District Judge Stanley Sporkin, named to the bench by Ronald Reagan after serving as the CIA's top lawyer; and Judge Douglas Ginsburg of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, best known as the jurist whose Supreme Court nomination in 1987 went down the tubes when Ginsburg admitted smoking pot in the 1970s. Alvin Webb smoked and sold crack on the streets of the nation's capital for three years. He was a junkie, never a high-powered dealer. "The suppliers would just give me the stuff to give to the people ... I never received any money," he testified. "All I received was just drugs for that." An undercover DEA agent bought crack from Webb on two occasions in February 1994: five grams on the first occasion, then six -- small amounts that would have meant little jail time. Then, according to court records, the DEA agent deliberately decided to ratchet up his third purchase from Webb -- 55 grams -- because under federal sentencing guidelines that meant a mandatory prison sentence of nine years or more. Webb obtained the court's permission to enroll in a drug rehab program, which might have allowed him to qualify for a lower sentence, but he failed at rehab after a month, ending up back on the streets smoking crack. He was caught 18 months later and was finally brought before Judge Sporkin for sentencing last year. Thus far, a familiar story of a crack addict in the criminal justice system. So imagine Webb's surprise -- and the federal prosecutor's -- when Sporkin the Reaganite took one look at the case and decided, then and there, that he simply could not reconcile the harsh prison sentence required by federal drug laws with the shattered individual standing before his bench. "If you were in a different economic bracket in this country, you'd probably be out at the Betty Ford Clinic," Sporkin said to Webb, according to court records. He blasted prosecutors who wanted Webb's sentence extended even further to punish him for his 18 months on the street. "It's because he doesn't control his own body. That's the problem. He doesn't control himself. He's out of control. He didn't do it to defy anybody. He hasn't done it in a defiant act. He did it because it's impossible for him." It wasn't just Webb's pitiable state that roused Sporkin's conscience. It was the DEA's routinely Kafkaesque practice of "sentencing entrapment" -- in this case, the DEA agent's deliberate instigation of a larger drug buy in order to trigger a heavier sentence. All this led Sporkin to commit a rare judicial version of civil disobedience (much as Hallinan now threatens in San Francisco). He declined to hand Webb the huge sentence required by law, which he describes as "grossly disproportional to the crime." Instead of a decade behind bars, Sporkin sentenced Webb to 41 months, worrying that "even 41 months is much too long for you." What's more, Sporkin virtually dared the outraged U.S. attorney's office to challenge his ruling: "I realize that you people hold all the weapons in this war on drugs, and I'll give you an easy one to get me reversed," he declared. And appeal the Justice Department did: to a three-judge appeals court panel headed by Judge Douglas Ginsburg, the former pot smoker. And it was Ginsburg who four weeks ago wrote a blistering take-down of Sporkin, thundering that the latter's attack of judicial conscience "wreaked havoc with the administration of justice." Sporkin, Ginsburg charged, "abused his discretion," and -- worse! -- "The United States Attorney and the Federal Public Defender each had to write learned briefs and this court had to hear argument and write an opinion -- all at considerable expense to the public." Ginsburg, in a unanimous appeals court ruling, ordered Sporkin to impose a sentence of 70-to-87 months (slightly lower than it otherwise would have been because of recalculations under the complicated sentencing guidelines). But Sporkin had not walked so far out on a limb only to be blown back by Ginsburg's tirade. Rather than impose the appeals court's longer sentence on Webb, he decided to take himself off the case in protest. And in a memorandum that has been circulating in Washington legal circles for several weeks, he blasted both Ginsburg's "intemperate remarks" as well as the whole system of drug prosecution. "A humane society does not incarcerate its sick and feeble," Sporkin wrote. "Clearly a sentencing system that considers only the amount of drugs involved and ignores completely the reasons for the actors' conduct would be contrary to this nation's values." Surprisingly, this Reagan-appointed pillar of the Washington establishment is not the only judge in town to protest such insane drug laws. In the D.C. circuit alone, Senior Judge David Oberdorfer has called 10-to-20-year mandatory minimum sentences for minor drug dealers cruel and unusual punishment. A handful of judges in New York and elsewhere have taken similar stands. Such cases of judicial civil disobedience, like this week's needle-exchange controversy and California's confrontation with the feds over medical marijuana, reveal deep and growing fissures in the official consensus on drug policy. It's notable that none of the figures involved are wild-eyed libertarians: They are jurists, prosecutors, White House officials, mayors. When the history of the war on drugs is written, early 1998 may come to be seen as a defining moment, rather like the Tet offensive in a different war 30 years ago, revealing fundamental rifts from which broader resistance and protest may yet emerge. SALON | March 31, 1998 Bruce Shapiro writes the Law & Order column for the Nation, and is a regular contributor to Salon.
------------------------------------------------------------------- US Study - Marijuana Is Addictive ('Reuters' Says A Report Published Tuesday In The Journal 'Drug And Alcohol Dependence,' Carried Out By The Addiction Research And Treatment Service At The University Of Colorado, Paid For By The National Institute On Drug Abuse, NIDA, Says More Than Two-Thirds Of Teens Referred For Treatment By Social Service Or Criminal Justice Agencies Complained Of Withdrawal Symptoms When They Stopped Using Marijuana) Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 08:21:22 +1200 (NZST) To: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org From: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) Subject: Study says cannabis addictive Posted at 8:52 a.m. PST Tuesday, March 31, 1998 U.S. study: Marijuana is addictive WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Troubled teen-agers who use marijuana can quickly become dependent on the drug, Colorado researchers reported Tuesday. More than two-thirds of teens referred for treatment by social service or criminal justice agencies complained of withdrawal symptoms when they stopped using marijuana, Dr. Thomas Crowley of the University of Colorado and colleagues reported. ``This study provides additional important data to better illustrate that marijuana is a dangerous drug that can be addictive,'' Dr. Alan Leshner, head of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), which paid for the study, said in a statement. ``It also identifies the devastating impact marijuana dependence can have on young people and highlights the fact that many both need and want help dealing with their addiction,'' he added. Crowley's team at the university's Addiction Research and Treatment Service studied interviews, medical examinations and social histories of 165 boys and 64 girls aged 13 to 19. More than 80 percent of the boys and 60 percent of the girls were clinically dependent on marijuana. When asked, 97 percent of the teens said they still used marijuana even after realizing it had become a problem for them. Eighty-five percent admitted their habit interfered with driving, school, work and home life, while 77 percent said they spent ``much time'' getting, using or recovering from the effects of marijuana, according to the study, published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence. Most also said their problems started before they started using marijuana. ``About 825,000 youths were arrested and formally processed by juvenile courts in 1994,'' Crowley said in a statement. ``About 50 percent of these youths tested positive for marijuana at the time of arrest and many fit the profile of the teens in this study, making them at high risk for marijuana dependence,'' he added. ``The challenge now becomes to develop highly effective methods to treat high-risk adolescents dependent on marijuana,'' Leshner said. President Clinton's anti-drug leader Barry McCaffrey said 50,000 young people seek treatment for marijuana dependence every year. ``This important study underscores what drug treatment professionals have long recognized: that marijuana is a dangerous drug, and its use can lead to severe consequences for vulnerable young people,'' McCaffrey said in a statement. Drug abuse experts say the problem is a physical, not a moral one and say drug addicts should be treated like anyone else with a disease rather than jailed.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Troubled Teens Risk Rapid Dependence On Marijuana (Press Release From US National Institute On Drug Abuse, NIDA, Notes The University Of Colorado Study Subjects Are A Subgroup Of 'Teenagers Who Have Prior Serious Antisocial Problems' - But Fails To Say Whether They Had Been Screened By Competent Psychiatrists For Conditions Such As Attention Deficit Disorder, Depression, Or Bipolar Disorder, For Which Cannabis Is Often A Useful Medicine, If Not Necessarily Always The Best) From: email@example.com Date: Tue, 31 Mar 98 15:28:57 EST To: #TLC-LARGE_at_osifirstname.lastname@example.org Subject: NIDA: Troubled Teens Risk Rapid Dependence on Marijuana Sender: email@example.com Press Release from NIDA: http://www.nida.nih.gov/MedAdv/98/MA-331.html National Institutes of Health National Institute on Drug Abuse EMBARGOED FOR RELEASE Tuesday, March 31, 1998, 9:00 a.m. Mona Brown Sheryl Massaro 301-443-6245 Troubled Teens Risk Rapid Dependence on Marijuana Marijuana use by teenagers who have prior serious antisocial problems can quickly lead to dependence on the drug, according to a recent study by researchers at the Addiction Research and Treatment Service, University of Colorado School of Medicine. The study also found that, for troubled teens using tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana, the progression from first use of marijuana to regular use was more rapid than the progression to regular use for alcohol and about the same as that for nicotine. "This study provides additional important data to better illustrate that marijuana is a dangerous drug that can be addictive," notes Dr. Alan I. Leshner, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), National Institutes of Health, which funded the research. "It also identifies the devastating impact marijuana dependence can have on young people and highlights the fact that many both need and want help dealing with their addiction. The challenge now becomes to develop highly effective methods to treat high risk adolescents dependent on marijuana." The study's conclusions are based on interviews, medical examinations, social history, and psychological evaluations of 165 boys and 64 girls between the ages of 13 and 19 who had been referred by social service or criminal justice agencies to a university-based treatment program for delinquent, substance-involved adolescents. More than 80 percent of the males and 60 percent of the females in the survey met the adult clinical criteria for dependence on marijuana. More than two-thirds of the dependent teens complained of withdrawal symptoms when they stopped using marijuana, and over a quarter of them reported using more of the drug to relieve these symptoms. Of the marijuana dependent teens, the study found that: 97 percent said they still used after realizing marijuana had become a problem for them; 85 percent noted that marijuana use interfered with driving and other situations at school, work, and home; 77 percent spent much time getting, using, or recovering from the effects of marijuana; 66 percent had given up important activities to use or acquire marijuana; 53 percent felt they had lost control and were using marijuana in larger amounts for longer periods than intended; and 35 percent wanted to cut back on use and had been unable to do so. Most of the teens also reported that their behavioral problems predated, and were not initially caused by, their drug use. Dr. Thomas Crowley, head of the research team conducting the study, cautions that these findings cannot be generalized to all adolescents. To be included in the study, youths had to have at least one diagnosis of drug dependence and three conduct disorder symptoms, including such things as frequent stealing, lying, running away, and, often, arrest. He points out, however, that, "About 825,000 youths were arrested and formally processed by juvenile courts in 1994. About 50 percent of these youths tested positive for marijuana at the time of arrest and many fit the profile of the teens in this study, making them at high risk for marijuana dependence." This study is published in the spring issue of Drug and Alcohol Dependence, (Vol. 50, Issue 1). NIDA supports more than 85 percent of the world's research on the health aspects of drug abuse and addiction. The Institute also carries out a large variety of programs to ensure the rapid dissemination of research information and its implementation in policy and practice. Further information on NIDA research and other activities can be found on the NIDA home page at http://www.nida.nih.gov. Fact sheets on health effects of drugs of abuse and other topics can be ordered free of charge in English and Spanish, by calling NIDA Infofax at 1-888-NIH-NIDA (-644-6432) or 1-888-TTY-NIDA (-889-6432) for the hearing impaired. The National Institute on Drug Abuse is a component of the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marijuana May Be Addictive For Troubled Teens - Study (Different Version Of 'Reuters' Article Explicitly Says In Second Paragraph, 'Instead Of Reinforcing The Image Of An Evil Weed Luring Carefree Adolescents Into A Life Of Drug Abuse, Their Study Indicates That Teen-Agers Get In Trouble First, Then Become Dependent On Marijuana') Date: Thu, 2 Apr 1998 17:14:51 EST Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: James Hammett
To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: Marijuana may be addictive for troubled teens- study This version of the story puts it (drug use) in a different light. (Of course I bet you won't see this one in very many local papers). later, James Newsgroups: clari.news.alcohol+drugs,clari.tw.health.misc Subject: Marijuana may be addictive for troubled teens- study Keywords: urgent Organization: Copyright 1998 by Reuters (via ClariNet) Date: Tue Mar 31 21:03:55 CST 1998 Threadword: health Note: (Adds reaction) WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Troubled teen-agers who use marijuana can quickly become dependent on the drug, Colorado researchers reported Tuesday. But instead of reinforcing the image of an evil weed luring carefree adolescents into a life of drug abuse, their study indicates that teen-agers get in trouble first, then become dependent on marijuana. Dr. Thomas Crowley of the University of Colorado said more than two-thirds of teens referred to his drug treatment and study program by social or criminal justice agencies complained of withdrawal symptoms when they stopped using marijuana. ``I want to emphasize that this is a group of kids in treatment for substance problems. This is not your average kid in a sophomore class,'' Crowley, a psychiatrist, said in a telephone interview. Nevertheless, he said, ``Cannabis makes big troubles in the lives of some people who are very troubled.'' Crowley's team at the university's Addiction Research and Treatment Service interviewed and examined 165 boys and 64 girls aged 13 to 19. More than 80 percent of the boys and 60 percent of the girls were clinically dependent on marijuana. ``These are official criteria from the American Psychiatric Association,'' Crowley said. ``They include things like the development of tolerance, development of withdrawal, the person continues using after he realizes it causes a problem for him,'' he added. When asked, 97 percent of the teens said they still used marijuana even after realizing it had become a problem for them. Eighty-five percent admitted their habit interfered with driving, school, work and home life, according to Crowley's report, published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence. ``The withdrawal symptoms that these kids complained of were tiredness, sleepiness, weakness, trouble concentrating, yawning, changes in appetite and psychological depression,'' Crowley said. ``In addition 25 percent of the kids said they used cannabis to relieve withdrawal symptoms.'' Most said their problems started before they started using marijuana. ``Also many come from very disrupted homes, from situations where the parents were emotionally disturbed or were themselves substance-involved or involved with the criminal justice system. This is a very troubled group of kids we deal with.'' This could indicate a genetic factor, Crowley said. ``We have convinced the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) to give us a large grant to study the genetics...in the kids that we treat and their families,'' Crowley said. He said alcoholism, which has a known genetic component, was very common in the teen-agers' families. ``This is a population that is very vulnerable to substance problems.'' But that did not mean the problem was rare. ``That is not a smaller, trivial population in the United States. There are about 825,000 juveniles arrested and sent to court each year. It appears that about half those kids have cannabis in their urine at the time of arrest.'' There could be a physical basis for marijuana dependence. Scientists have identified a brain receptor -- a place where chemicals hook onto brain cells -- that specifically responds to THC, the active ingredient in marijuana. ``This study is not about marijuana's dangers,'' Lynn Zimmer, a sociologist who wrote a book, ``Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts,'' said in a statement. ``Most teens who try marijuana are normal and healthy, and never develop symptoms of drug dependence. Among troubled teens, heavy marijuana use is more of a symptom than a cause. The solution is to offer troubled teens more support and assistant, whether they use marijuana or not.''
------------------------------------------------------------------- Re - Study Says Cannabis Addictive (Commentary From List Subscribers, Plus A Huge Media List Of E-Mail Addresses To Bcc In Protest) Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 17:21:21 -0500 (EST) From: "Kelly T. Conlon"
To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: Study says cannabis addictive > U.S. study: Marijuana is addictive > > WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Troubled teen-agers who use > marijuana can quickly become dependent on the drug, Colorado > researchers reported Tuesday. > > More than two-thirds of teens referred for treatment by social > service or criminal justice agencies complained of withdrawal > symptoms when they stopped using marijuana, Dr. Thomas > Crowley of the University of Colorado and colleagues reported. Gosh, you don't say. And I bet that nearly all the members of AA will tell you that alcohol is addictive. KTC *** To: email@example.com From: "Mark D. Walker" Subject: Re: Study says cannabis addictive Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 04:27:29 -0500 At 03:44 PM 3/31/98 -0800, you wrote: >Kelly wrote: >Gosh, you don't say. And I bet that nearly all the members of AA will >tell you that alcohol is addictive. Alcohol is addictive, pot isn't, big difference. Some people do become dependent on pot like some do on TV. >Imagine, mom, dad, a good cop, a bad cop, a counselor, all towering over >a teenager who has been found with a few joints. Naturally the kid is going >to say the Devil made him do it. They offer the kid a choice between >treatment or a juvenile detention centre. Confession under duress. This is what I see 90% of the problem to be, but there are some people that will honestly have a problem with pot, addicted no, dependent yes. I have seen kids that get moody when they can't watch their favorite TV show. >I've only seen this story on wire services so far but be on the look out >for every major paper to pick it up, just as they did the "rats on THC >antagonists progress to heroin" story last year. Sigh. Did you expect any less of NIDA? I didn't think they were going to roll over and play dead with the fear of loosing most of their funding if 90% of the drug "problem" went away, did you? *** From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Matt Elrod) To: email@example.com Subject: Re: Study says cannabis addictive Date: Wed, 01 Apr 1998 07:40:02 -0800 Mark wrote: }Alcohol is addictive, pot isn't, big difference.. Some people do become }dependent on pot like some do on TV. Yep. A while back someone wrote an article on Internet Addiction Syndrome and set up a support group as a joke. In no time at all the support group was swamped with members. }>treatment or a juvenile detention centre. Confession under duress. }This is what I see 90% of the problem to be, but there are some people that }will honestly have a problem with pot, addicted no, dependent yes. Agreed. }>for every major paper to pick it up, just as they did the "rats on THC }>antagonists progress to heroin" story last year. Sigh. } }Did you expect any less of NIDA? I didn't think they were going to roll over }and play dead with the fear of loosing most of thier funding if 90% of the }drug "problem" went away, did you? Yep. This sort of dovetails into the Moyer series. It turns out Moyer's son is a director of Hazelden. You gotta figure that if the American public is willing to spend 17 billion fighting drugs, and have recently expressed a willingness to spend *more*, treatment could eclipse incarceration as the new growth industry. Something the Moyer's series didn't touch on at all is the difference between use and abuse, between casual use and addiction/dependence. All drug users are sick and need expensive treatment. Matt *** Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 18:55:45 EST Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: "Dave Ford" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: Re: Study says cannabis addictive Every national and international non-partisan study has demonstrated that marijuana is NOT physically addictive. It appears that our thoughtful federal government is pulling every possible rabbit out of the hat to prepare the public for the upcoming elections. Needless to say these are troubled children, who would be addicted to chocolate, TV, or whatever. Those are the type of youngsters who, if marijuana weren't available, would be emptying a bottle of booze every day, or "huffing" glue or whatever. The following paragraph demonstrates that those youngsters are not typical teenagers. >"Most also said their problems started before they started using >marijuana." Dave Ford *** From: email@example.com (Matt Elrod) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: Study says cannabis addictive Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 15:44:56 -0800 Kelly wrote: > U.S. study: Marijuana is addictive > > WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Troubled teen-agers who use > marijuana can quickly become dependent on the drug, Colorado > researchers reported Tuesday. > > More than two-thirds of teens referred for treatment by social > service or criminal justice agencies complained of withdrawal > symptoms when they stopped using marijuana, Dr. Thomas > Crowley of the University of Colorado and colleagues reported. >>Gosh, you don't say. And I bet that nearly all the members of AA will >>tell you that alcohol is addictive. That is exactly right Kelly. People in weight loss clinics will tell you that food is addictive too. In addition, these kids were referred to treatment centres by social services and the courts. Imagine, mom, dad, a good cop, a bad cop, a counselor, all towering over a teenager who has been found with a few joints. Naturally the kid is going to say the Devil made him do it. They offer the kid a choice between treatment or a juvenile detention centre. Confession under duress. I've only seen this story on wire services so far but be on the look out for every major paper to pick it up, just as they did the "rats on THC antagonists progress to heroin" story last year. Sigh. Matt *** Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 19:42:15 EST Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Gary Metzendorf To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: Re: Study says cannabis addictive Hello David Hadorn, on 01-Apr-98 01:23:51, you said, >Posted at 8:52 a.m. PST Tuesday, March 31, 1998 >U.S. study: Marijuana is addictive > >WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Troubled teen-agers who use >marijuana can quickly become dependent on the drug, Colorado >researchers reported Tuesday. --propaganda snipped here Why is it when information like this, anecdotal, without double blind studies, is presented that shows cannabis to be beneficial it's pooh-poohed by the government health organizations, like NIDA or FDA. When it is however showing deleterious or damaging effects, it's good science and reported as though it came down the mountain with Moses. Can anyone doubt the media is in bed with the government on this policy, when they won't even question these obvious propaganda attempts? *** Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 10:07:19 EST Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Jim Rosenfield To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: MJ Addictiveness This article can be found at http://turnpike.net/~jnr/addictvn.htm Re "Marijuana is an addictive drug". According to "Relative Addictiveness of Drugs" by Philip J. Hilts, New York Times, Aug. 2, 1994, marijuana is no more addictive than caffeine. In the same article, when compared with those of alcohol, cocaine, tobacco, heroin and caffeine, marijuana "withdrawal symptoms" were the lowest of the six. Jim Rosenfield *** From: email@example.com (C Cross) Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 01:35:01 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: "50,000 young seek treatment for mj dependence each year"... "50,000 young people seek treatment for marijuana dependence each year"... Reuters, 3/31/98 Yeah, right! From personal experience I shall address this typical twisted lie from those ugly men with guns who are so afraid of flowers and herbs and mushrooms. (and well they should be, their karma is so fvcked up they would definitely go on a major league bad trip, beyond repair... too much secrecy, fear, suspicion and violence. keep these people away from the Botanica Sagrada...) The 50,000 innocent young who 'seek' treatment from these 'education' programs are also euphemistically referred to as 'clients'. They go through systematic 'processing'. In other words they have no choice. The judge or the school or the friendly community cop or even hysterical Mom and furious Dad. A teacher at school ignores a thousand kids every day defiantly smoking cigarettes; but calls the cops in a hurry if he/she sees you discreetly sharing a joint. Hello-o-o? You are now one of the 50,000 'seeking' 'treatment' from your 'problem'! It also helps them build a paper case of documentation to 'prove' that marijuana is a dangerous drug, "just look at all these 'clients' who came to us 'seeking treatment' for their problem!" This is a wholesale brainwashing of our youth. This is mean-spirited macho aggression and bullying pushed to the extreme. These actions are designed to intimidate and coerce the young and into parroting the authoritarian party line of 'zero tolerance' and 'only sick people use drugs'. The poor kids are terriffied. So am I *** Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 03:26:38 EST Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Arthur Sobey To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: Re: [Fwd: UPDATE - Study says cannabis addictive] > Subject: UPDATE> Study says cannabis addictive > Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 08:21:22 +1200 (NZST) > From: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) > To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com > CC: firstname.lastname@example.org > > Posted at 8:52 a.m. PST Tuesday, March 31, 1998 > > U.S. study: Marijuana is > addictive > > WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Troubled teen-agers who use > marijuana can quickly become dependent on the drug, Colorado > researchers reported Tuesday. What? You mean only troubled kids with pre-existing problems completely unrelated to marijuana are affected with dependency "problems?" > ``This study provides additional important data to better illustrate > that marijuana is a dangerous drug that can be addictive,'' Dr. > Alan Leshner, head of the National Institute on Drug Abuse > (NIDA), which paid for the study, said in a statement. Notice the interesting use of the word "can" as in "can be addictive." It once would have read "is addictive." This study of troubled children was funded by the NIDA. How objective. > ``It also identifies the devastating impact marijuana dependence > can have on young people and highlights the fact that many both > need and want help dealing with their addiction,'' he added. Who ever said kids should be doing drugs in the first place? Isn't the reason teens are prohibited from doing drugs by law, because they can be expected to have problems due to their immaturity? Dependence and addiction are the same problem? > Crowley's team at the university's Addiction Research and > Treatment Service studied interviews, medical examinations and > social histories of 165 boys and 64 girls aged 13 to 19. Seems like a really small test group, but then they probably only wanted the most seriously troubled teens for the "study." > Most also said their problems started before they started using > marijuana. So, what is the point of the study? We should be studying the pre-existing problems if we really want to help these kids. > ``About 825,000 youths were arrested and formally processed > by juvenile courts in 1994,'' Crowley said in a statement. So, our troubled sample group is 229 out of about 800,000? > ``About 50 percent of these youths tested positive for marijuana > at the time of arrest and many fit the profile of the teens in this > study, making them at high risk for marijuana dependence,'' he > added. > More than 80 percent of the boys and 60 percent of the girls > were clinically dependent on marijuana. So, out of 400,000 (half of 800,000), 170 (80% of 165 and 60% of 64) kids who use pot (positive drug test) make a claim of dependency? Does this mean that marijuana is 99.999425% non-addictive to teens (small grin)? > ``The challenge now becomes to develop highly effective methods > to treat high-risk adolescents dependent on marijuana,'' Leshner > said. > > President Clinton's anti-drug leader Barry McCaffrey said 50,000 > young people seek treatment for marijuana dependence every > year. Most of this is probably court-ordered rehab in lieu of jail? I read a figure of 100,000 somewhere a few weeks ago. > ``This important study underscores what drug treatment > professionals have long recognized: that marijuana is a dangerous > drug, and its use can lead to severe consequences for vulnerable > young people,'' McCaffrey said in a statement. All drug treatment professionals? When did Dr.'s Mikuriya and Grinspoon jump ship? The number of "vulnerable" young people seems small overall. What severe consequences are we talking about here; the results of getting caught in the first place? > Drug abuse experts say the problem is a physical, not a moral one > and say drug addicts should be treated like anyone else with a > disease rather than jailed. What about the users (as opposed to abusers)? If you aren't addicted, and aren't therefore diseased, do you go to jail? Art Sobey *** Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 05:50:34 EST Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: "Geoffery S. Thomas" To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: Re: Study says cannabis addictive >Eighty-five percent admitted their habit interfered with driving, >school, work and home life, while 77 percent said they spent >``much time'' getting, using or recovering from the effects of >marijuana, according to the study, published in the jounral Drug >and Alcohol Dependence. > >Most also said their problems started before they started using >marijuana. If their problems started before they started using marijuana, then how can any of these problems be attributed to using marijuana. I could say my life is a mess and I'm using chocolate. That must be the problem! But no my life was a mess before I ever used any chocolate. Doesn't make any sense. *** From: email@example.com (Tim Meehan) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: Addictive properties of marijuana Date: Thu, 2 Apr 1998 12:48:12 -0500 Organization: University of Toronto Dear Editor: The U.S. Journal of Drug and Alcohol Dependance, a medical trade publication, recently reported that teen cannabis users could become dependant on the naturally occurring herb. However, upon closer examination, some overlooked points need to be addressed. Reuters said that according to University of Colorado researchers, "More than two-thirds of teens referred for treatment by social service or criminal justice agencies complained of withdrawal symptoms when they stopped using marijuana." Does this mean that the subjects in the study had been under the care of social services or under court supervision, and perhaps told researchers what they wanted to hear? One must ask if there was a control group of successful teen marijuana users (yes, they do exist) that the study results were compared to. The report also fails to address the fact that these "troubled teens" likely got *into* trouble as a direct result of the War on Drugs, the new McCarthyism (McCaffreyism?) which ruins lives, families and the fabric of society far more than the substances it was designed to eradicate. For Dr. Alan Leshner, head of the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse, to point to this vague survey to support his platform that marijuana use is somehow dangerous is not only intellectually dishonest, but borders on scientific fraud. But really, can we expect any less from someone whose bread and butter comes from spreading "reefer madness" scare tactics? It was not long ago when NIDA was pointing to studies performed on rats that supposedly showed that cannabis had certain effects on the brain that were similar to harder drugs, but when scrutinized, it turns out that the substance used in the experiment wasn't even present in marijuana! Aside from the fact that most reputable medical journals around the world -- for example, the British medical journal The Lancet, which went as far as saying that "The smoking of cannabis, even long term, is not harmful to health," or perhaps the Drug Enforcement Administration's own administrative law judge Francis L. Young who said that "Marijuana, in its natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man" -- disagree with Leshner, U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy Barry McCaffery and other drug warriors when they state that cannabis is a "dangerous drug," the report itself damages any supposed credibility by stating that when asked, most teens said "their problems started before they started using marijuana." The only addictive property of marijuana is the effect it has on legislators (in America, and around the world) and those who make money off of the human misery that the War on Drugs creates. -Timothy J. Meehan Toronto, ON  Volume 346, Number 8985, November 11, 1995  Docket No. 86-22, September 6, 1988 *** Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 02:55:05 -0800 To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Monster Bcc List Here's a list of over 700 newspapers and media outlets around the world. The "Marijuana Is Addictive" story would be an excellent target for all of you repealers to aim this list at. R Givens For those with Eudora & other e-mail programs with a Bcc feature. Doing Bcc: lists is a good way to get your message out to hundreds of addresses without the receivers seeing the other addressees. It will greatly improve the chances of getting your letter printed if they do not know it has mass distribution. Since they aren't paying for your writing they have no right to demand exclusives. By doing a "Blind copy to (Bcc:)" the receiver ONLY sees YOUR address and their own address on the e-mail. Here's how it works. First, copy and paste the e-mail list below into the Bcc: entry. Next address the To: entry -- to YOURSELF. Do this AFTER putting the list in the Bcc: entry. When the addressee gets the e-mail ONLY your address and their's will appear. It's a good idea to include your own address in the Bcc entry to see how posting this way works. 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------------------------------------------------------------------- Peak Voices (Op-Ed By Physician In 'Colorado Springs Gazette' Faults The United States' Hypocritical And Illogical Drug Policy - 'Politicians Seem To Believe That Kids Will Be Spared Marijuana's Harms By Exaggerating Its Risks And Enforcing Strict Penalties - But When It Comes To Tobacco, We Are Expected To Trust The Tobacco Industry To Keep Kids Away From Their More Harmful Product') Date: Thu, 2 Apr 1998 16:03:43 EST Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: pllilly
To: Multiple recipients of list Subject: ART: Tobacco a more dangerous drug than marijuana, but it's sti March 31, 1998 Colorado Springs Gazette LTEs: email@example.com *** Peak Voices by Matthew Hine, M.D. I wonder if politicians are afraid of losing their jobs by appearing soft on drugs (which would be risky), or if they're afflicted with a thought disorder when it comes to drug policy. While researchers at the World Health Organization reported that cannabis (marijuana) is in many ways safer than tobacco or alcohol (New Scientist Magazine, February 2, 1998), Vice President Al Gore addressed a young audience in Boston about the dangers of tobacco. "Why don't you close all the tobacco factories and farms?" one bright student asked. The vice president replied that such an approach would be impossible, akin to the government's failed prohibition on alcohol. "There are so many (tobacco) addicted adults, that if you try to outlaw the industry you'd have a horrible law enforcement problem," he said. (Massachusetts Standard-Times, March 15, 1998.) Really! Has Gore forgotten that he has admitted being one of more than 70 million Americans who have broken the law by smoking . . . marijuana? More than 10 million have been arrested on marijuana charges since 1972, the vast majority for simple possession of a small quantity. In that same year, the National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse told Congress that possession of less than 1 ounce of marijuana should be decriminalized. Congress did not follow the Commission's advice. There were 640,000 marijuana arrests in 1997 alone. As a result, our prisons are bursting at the seams. Due in large part to our war on marijuana users, the United States has the distinction of incarcerating a larger percentage of our population than any other nation on earth. Mandatory minimum sentencing laws cause longer jail terms for non-violent offenders than for murderers. The housing and feeding of each prisoner bleeds off more than $20,000 per year of taxpayer's money. Politicians seem to believe that kids will be spared marijuana's harms by exaggerating its risks and enforcing strict penalties. But when it comes to tobacco, we are expected to trust the tobacco industry to keep kids away from their more harmful product? To show how ludicrous this is, imagine reversing the situation. Picture a world where marijuana manufacturers are allowed the power to negotiate regulation, even as they receive subsidies from the federal government, and where pot is available at every gas station and grocery store. Imagine citizens who risk forfeiting their liberty and property for possessing the smallest amount of tobacco. Tobacco addicts millions and causes hundred of thousands of premature deaths each year. No one believes tobacco=A0has medicinal value. Marijuana, on the other hand, has been recommended by doctors for centuries. Today, It helps patients suffering from AIDS, the side effects of chemotherapy, and a variety of spastic muscle disorders. It is not physically addicting, and unlike cigarettes or booze, not one case of human death due to its use has been documented. The myths that using marijuana causes a person to become an abuser of "hard drugs," or that marijuana causes brain damage were disproven years ago. (Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts: A review of the scientific literature, by Lynn Zimmer, Ph.D. and John Morgan, M.D. published by The Lindesmith Center, 1997.) Marijuana has been used as a medicine in China, India, the Middle East and South America. In the 19th century, it was respectable enough to be used by Queen Victoria's doctor to alleviate her pain during childbirth. The renouwned physician Sir William Osler recommended it as a superior treatment for migraine headaches. It was commonly prescribed by medical doctors in the United States until the early 20th century. Today, American physicians who routinely prescribe far more dangerous drugs are not allowed to prescribe marijuana to people who are dying, going blind or being crippled. This conflict between medical needs and federal policy has created a situation in which desperately ill patients turn to the streets and become criminals. In 1988, after reviewing the evidence brought forth in a lawsuit against the government's prohibition of medical marijuana, the Drug Enforcement Administration's own judge wrote: "The evidence clearly shows that marijuana has been accepted as capable of relieving the distress of great numbers of very ill people. It would be unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious for the Drug Enforcement Administration to continue to stand between those sufferers and the benefits of this substance in light of the evidence." Since that time, many respected individuals and organizations have recommended a regulatory rather than a prohibitionist approach to marijuana. There is absolutely no argument about the need to keep children away from alcohol, tobacco and marijuana, but the strategies are quite different. My preferred recreational drug is one you wouldn't want your kids to get a hold of. Used irresponsibly, it's addictive, causes liver and brain damage, and is linked to increased violence. The social and health costs of its use are horrendous. Fortunately, the chances of any government legalazing it ourright -- removing all regulations -- are small. After all, alcohol has been around so long that the only way to control it is through regulation, not prohibition. MATTHEW HINE, M.D. Background: Hine earned his medical degree at the University of Texas at Galveston in 1987. He earned a masters degree of public health in 1990. He has been a resident of Colorado Springs since 1996. Experience: He is a practicing physician specializing in preventative medicine and is a member of the American Society of Bariatric Physicians.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Paradise Lost? ('Dallas Morning News' Suggests The Peaceful, Stereotypically Hippie-Friendly Mexican Beach Town Of Zipolite Is Being Transformed By Government Disaster Loans After Hurricane Pauline - But Similar Paradises Can Be Found With A Little Searching) Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 11:45:14 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Olafur Brentmar
Subject: MN: Mexico: Paradise Lost? Sender: email@example.com Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Pubdate: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 Source: Dallas Morning News Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.dallasnews.com Author: Tracey Eaton / The Dallas Morning News PARADISE LOST? Hurricanes, Development Changing Face Of Quirky Mexican Beach Town ZIPOLITE, Mexico - Like something out of a Cheech and Chong movie, a shaggy-haired hippie strolls along an ivory stretch of sand, peddling his wares to naked sun worshipers. "Want any suntan lotion?" he asks a woman wearing a nose ring and little else. "No? Well, how 'bout some weed? I got good quality." Such odd appeals are remarkably common in this little beach town, a laid-back hideaway for nudists, pot smokers, turtle watchers and gray-haired spiritualists from around the world. Now though, some Zipolite loyalists fear for its future. First came Hurricane Pauline, which swept away half of the town in October. Hurricane Rick hit a month later. And just when it seemed things couldn't get worse, they did: The builders arrived. Armed with electric drills, claw hammers and government disaster loans, these enterprising small-time developers are changing the face of Zipolite, some say for the worse. Three- and four-story hotels are springing up where breezy thatched-roof huts once stood. Restaurants made of concrete blocks are replacing quaint taco stands with menus scribbled on blackboards. And many longtime residents are angry. "It's like we've been invaded," said Gloria Hope Johnson, who runs Shambhala, a guest house and cafe for the New Age crowd. "Can't they just leave a place natural and simple?" Others disagree, saying the march of civilization can't - and shouldn't - be stopped. "Most of the locals here are poor. They need more than just hippies and drugs," said Vit Sojka, 34, a Czech travel agent and Mexico City resident who visits regularly. "They need to attract people with money." Zipolite, with a population of several thousand people, lies along the southern coast of Oaxaca, one of Mexico's poorest states. Backpackers, adventurers and hippies discovered its then-deserted beach in 1970 after hearing it would be a prime spot to see a solar eclipse that year. The beach became a town, but remained unspoiled into the late '80s, residents say. Americans and Europeans hiked in because the road from nearby Puerto Angel didn't exist yet. The travelers slept in hammocks rigged under open-air huts called palapas, paying no more than a few dollars a night. Sea turtles laid their eggs in sandy coves, and authorities left most people alone even when they stripped off their clothes and smoked marijuana. Residents say it was a great place to live cheap and do next to nothing. One man arrived in a van that promptly broke down, so he decided to stay. Ten years later, he's still there and so is his car, unrepaired along a gravel road. By the mid-1990s, locals had opened several dozen oceanfront restaurants, with rickety tables, plastic lawn chairs and handwritten signs touting the day's fresh catch. Tour guides from nearby resorts in Huatulco and Puerto Escondido started promoting Zipolite as "Mexico's last nude beach," and soon camera-toting gawkers and curiosity-seekers began to outnumber those going au naturel. Even so, the town has continued to attract new fans with the help of the World Wide Web as veteran "Zipol-heads" share their adventures. "I went to the Zip a couple years ago and had intended to stay for only a few days but somehow ended up there for a few weeks," Chicagoan Kevin McNeill said by e-mail. "You must understand that Zipolite isn't a place, it's a state of mind. "I remember late nights around campfires where we cooked rice and beans and listened to stories that international vagabonds tell. This dude from Italy would play bongos while the local Oaxacans played their guitars and shook these long, fig-like things. I sometimes wonder what has become of my friends from Zipolite." Electronic chatter about the town reached new intensity after Hurricane Pauline ripped through the region with 180 mph winds on Oct. 8. No one in Zipolite died, but dozens of homes, restaurants, hotels and the Pina Palmera orphanage were leveled. Before the storm hit, one group of residents climbed onto a neighbor's roof to guzzle beer and watch what they thought would be an ordinary gale. "What was that?" one of them remembered asking. "I think a roof just flew by," said his companion, and they quickly decided to take cover. Ms. Johnson, 57, rode out the hurricane with a friend, a baby and a German shepherd named Shaman. "Everything was blowing so fast around our little house," she recalled. "Dishes, pots, chairs, even the tables went off the terrace. We were dripping wet, and leaves stuck all over our skin. Our hair was blowing straight up." She and others tried to prevent the roof from blowing off, but eventually gave up, hiding in a small concrete room until the storm ended. "It's like we were in a cosmic blender and we came out liquified," she said. "We were shocked. An iguana that had used a tree trunk as a life raft was now being carried out to sea. Two-hundred-year-old cactus trees were ripped apart. Every part of our bodies hurt. We were so happy to be alive." As residents rebuilt, Hurricane Rick struck Nov. 9. And while it wasn't nearly as powerful as Pauline, it swept away roofs, downed power lines and scattered debris all over the pristine beach. Those who are putting up concrete-block hotels say the new Zipolite will be better protected against the next disaster. Others, such as Luis Castellano, 33, said they'd rather not see concrete and iron bars along the beach. "Wood's OK. Not concrete. Not any of that." All 10 of the little huts he owns were destroyed by Pauline. "What took me five or six years to build was wiped out in just a few hours," said Mr. Castellano as he pounded a nail into a new palapa. Even with its emerging new look, Zipolite is a spectacle not easily described. On one recent afternoon, a French woman stepped gingerly around a skinny crippled dog named Angel, stripped off her clothes and waded into the water. A Canadian musician who said he came to Zipolite "to get healthy" smoked a marijuana cigarette, then offered it to a Californian. "Is this any good?" she asked, taking a toke. "I buy only the good stuff in San Francisco. Four-hundred dollars an ounce. One puff and you're stoned for three hours." Another Californian, a health food store employee named Brett Fisher, said there seem to be more drugs in Zipolite than ever before. "I've been offered LSD, pot, coke and just about everything else," she said. No matter, a red-headed friend of hers who goes by Revi Airborne said she loved the place and planned to stay at least a week. "It's totally paradise," said Ms. Airborne, a violin teacher. "In California, the ocean water is so cold, if you're not swimming, you're dying. But here it's like a big bathtub with lots of adventure thrown in. It's gorgeous." She sat on a blue and white tie-dyed cloth and drank a Squirt as other travelers trudged by in the hot sand. "It's an intense heterosexual pickup scene," she said. "There are a lot of single, roving men. Mexicans, Europeans, Americans. It's definitely a scene." A group of locals walked by, saying they were going to Ramon's, the grocery store, where they planned to sit on the steps and drink the cheapest beer in town. "A lot of people here can't make it anywhere else," said Joyce Ferman, an English teacher and Zipolite regular. "You find everything, dropouts, free-lance missionaries, drunks, druggies. You name it." Just then, a nude couple ran into the water. "Someone ought to do a calendar - The Boys of Zipolite. Or even The Girls of Zipolite," Ms. Ferman said. "It would be a hit." Behind her, workers labored on what will be a four-story hotel. "Zipolite is definitely changing," said Ms. Ferman, glancing toward the building. "I'd call it a paradise in transition." An Italian who gave his name only as Billo agreed. "With big restaurants selling hamburgers, hotels and fancy toilets everywhere, Zipolite will be like any other beach," he said. "Already, the atmosphere has changed. The hurricanes did it. They blew away not only the palapas, but the energy, the magic. "So someday we may have to say Zipolite is finished. But we'll find another place. Another paradise."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Stirring The Pot With New Marijuana Club ('Canadian Press' Notes The Opening Of Lynn Harichy's Civilly Disobedient Medical Marijuana Dispensary In London, Ontario, And Says Buyers' Clubs Are Already Up And Running In Toronto And Vancouver) Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 20:40:03 -0500 To: DrugSense News Service
From: Richard Lake Subject: MN: Canada: Stirring The Pot With New Marijuana Club Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Richard Lake email@example.com Source: Canadian Press Pubdate: March 31, 1998 Editor's note: Our newsmaker (and my good friend), Lynn, has been on TV, radio and in the press more than anyone in Canada on this issue. More on her story is at http://www.hempnation.com/focus/focus-0111.html Please help us document her efforts by sending any news items you see to firstname.lastname@example.org. Both Lynn and I can usually be found in the MAP CHAT room Saturday and Sunday evening if anyone should wish to chat with us. - Richard http://www.mapinc.org/chat/ *** STIRRING THE POT WITH NEW MARIJUANA CLUB TORONTO (CP) She knows firsthand the devastating effects of having her home raided by police searching for pot. That's why Lynn Harichy is willing to risk going through it again. She's started a medical marijuana club that begins distributing pot today, providing a service she hopes will stop anyone enduring what she did. "We don't want to be criminals but there is a necessity for it," Harichy, who suffers from multiple sclerosis and smokes pot to ease her symptoms, said in a telephone interview from her home in London, Ont. Harichy is scheduled to appear in court later this month on a pot possession charge but lawyers were headed to court today to postpone the appearance until the fall. Harichy, 37, is well aware she's breaking the law again by distributing weed to members of her club but she says it's a price she's willing to pay. Helping people reduce their pain is her reward. "It's nice to see people not have to suffer so much," she said. "We're not making any money off it ... this is just for compassion reasons. "You have to be sympathetic to these people that are suffering. It's not right to have people suffer especially if there's something out there that can help them." There are about 70 members of the London club. All clients must submit letters from their doctors stating their medical condition and marijuana is provided for them by the club. The drug is considered effective in alleviating symptoms of multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, cancer and AIDS. Members are given a quarter ounce of organically grown marijuana a week or one ounce a month, said Harichy. She says she's met both Health Minister Allan Rock and Prime Minister Jean Chretien and she believes medical marijuana will soon be available. Derek Kent, a spokesman for Rock, declined comment on Harichy's club. But he noted that Rock has already said the government is "examining the issue of using marijuana for medicinal purposes." Buyers' clubs are already up and running in Toronto and Vancouver. In California and Arizona, state laws have been reformed to allow marijuana's medical usage. More Ontario clubs are in the works. "Nobody's had any problems to the best of my knowledge," said Alan Young, the lawyer who sought government authorization for the Ontario clubs. "Police are very noncommittal on the issue," he said. "They'll probably wait until there are complaints or the buyers' clubs become a nuisance in the community." Harichy and other club owners are committing acts of "civil disobedience" to push the government into making reforms, Young said. "We can't wait. There's too many people who are suffering now. We have to go ahead with it," said Harichy. But Terry Parker, an epileptic who supports medicinal marijuana, says buyers' clubs aren't the solution. "These people would be much better off if they got more public support for legalization," he said. Parker uses pot "it's the best drug in the world" to control his seizures. In December, cultivation and possession charges against him were stayed by an Ontario court. The ruling is being appealed by the federal government. "It's not a great idea to (open the centres) and get busted. I've been through this rigmarole and it's a pain in the ass," he said. "I'm not trying to deter these people. Their heart's in the right place but their brain's not." Parker is critical of the federal government's decision to legalize hemp production while it continues to oppose medical marijuana use. "I find it kind of off the wall that we put material purposes over the sanctity of human life," he said. "If you want to grow it for greed that's OK but if you want to grow it for need ... you're going to jail."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Report Urges Legal Status For Cannabis ('The Dominion' In Wellington, New Zealand, Notes The New Report 'New Zealand Should Regulate And Tax Cannabis Commerce,' Issued By The Drug Policy Forum Trust, Says Cannabis Law In New Zealand Is Currently Based On Emotion, Rhetoric And Politics, Rather Than Science)Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 21:08:11 +1200 (NZST) To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com From: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) Subject: NZ PUB: Legalise dope, report urges Source: The Dominion (Wellington), p.2 Author: Emily Simpson Pubdate: Tuesday, 31 March 1998 Contact: Fax 64 4 474 0350 (no e-mail) Report urges legal status for cannabis Cannabis law in New Zealand is based on emotion, rhetoric and politics, rather than science, according to a group of professionals who want the Government to legalise cannabis and take control of the market. Scientists and professionals have been excluded from the cannabis debate, the Drug Policy Forum Trust says in its report "New Zealand Should Regulate and Tax Cannabis Commerce." Headed by health researcher and policy analyst David Hadorn, the forum is made up of four physicians, two of whom are professors of medicine, a professor of law, a professor pharmacology, and educationalist, and a Maori culture expert. It describes itself as an independent group dedicated to ensuring the drug policy debate is based on evidence and logic, not emotion. The report recommends the Government accept that cannabis is part of New Zealand culture. "Its responsible use by adults should therefore be normalised," it says. "The adverse health effects of cannabis are no worse than those associated with alcohol and tobacco (indeed they are less severe)." The harms associated with cannabis are magnified by driving its use underground, the report says. Prohibition impedes public health and education measures. It creates a black market that preys on young people, burdens thousands of New Zealanders every year with criminal records, wastes police resources and creates disrespect for the law. About 250,000 police hours and $18 million a year is spent on dealing with about 20,000 cannabis offences, it says. Furthermore, prohibition glamourises drug use, encouraging early cannabis use by young people. "A 'democratic system' failure has occurred in that scientists and scientific evidence have been excluded from an important arena of public policy, and resulting harm to society and, especially, young people. It recommends that a Tobacco, Alcohol and Cannabis Authority be created to develop and enforce regulations concerning the production, distribution, sale and use of the three substances it calls "a natural triad of frequently used social drugs." The authority would be advised by a committee of non-governmental experts. Legal penalties would be for misbehaviour caused by the deliberate taking of a drug, and for importing, producing or selling alcohol, tobacco or cannabis outside the regulatory framework. Till such regulations are in place, the report says, police should place low priority on enforcement of cannabis laws. In particular, young people should not be burdened with criminal records for using or possessing cannabis.
------------------------------------------------------------------- A Major Blow To Prohibition - Get In On The Action! (URL And Commentary On The New Zealand Report By A List Subscriber Who Also Seeks Donations For Portland NORML) Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 14:07:42 -0800 From: Darren (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: A Major Blow To Prohibition - Get In On The Action! 3/31/98 Please consider forwarding (please remove original recipients from the header) to anyone you know who is sympathetic to a resolution of the War On Drugs and its attendant societal problems. The most important report I've ever read on cannabis prohibition was released yesterday by The Drug Policy Forum Trust of New Zealand, a group of doctors and other non-governmental employee professionals. Entitled "New Zealand Should Regulate and Tax Cannabis Commerce", the report is especially important because it discusses and denounces 90 years of the US and UN aggressively pursuing a world-wide prohibition, and the media's duplicity despite the irrefutable science that says this strategy is doomed to fail. They go so far as to declare a "Democratic System Failure" because of the negligence of the media. The report also cites other recent studies and reports that have come to similar conclusions (i.e. legalize, regulate and tax adult cannabis consumption), as well as a world-wide shift in public consensus on cannabis policy. >From the report: "The importance of the media in pursuing cannabis law reform can hardly be overstated. A "democratic system failure" has occurred in that scientists and scientific evidence have been excluded from an important arena of public policy, with resulting harm to society and, especially, young people. It is with respect to just such failures of democracy that the Fourth Estate has its most important role, i.e., in relentlessly exposing such failures to the public. In this regard, the Ottawa Citizen and the UK's Independent on Sunday both launched campaigns last year for cannabis law reform." You can find the full text of the report at: http://www.marijuananews.com/a_major_contribution_.htm or http://www.nzdf.org.nz/1998.htm It's an 11-page document that succinctly makes the case for the regulation and taxation of cannabis in New Zealand, and in my opinion, worldwide. Please read it. I consider this damning evidence, and a call to, well, certainly NOT arms, but you know what I mean... voices? The Washington DC based Drug Policy Foundation, The Drug Reform Coordination Network and National NORML do much to bring this sort of information to the media, the legislators and the public here in the US. They should be rewarded for this important work, in fact all reform groups need members and money now more than ever before. I don't have much money this week, but I'm going to give DRCNet $20 and get the book Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts in the bargain. Besides, I've been getting their weekly email newsletter for free for a year or so, I owe 'em. To my friends in Oregon and elsewhere, the Portland Chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (PDX NORML) needs to raise $750 in the next 3 weeks, and another $750 by the middle of June, to secure an outside booth at this year's Oregon State Fair. We will have a video and multimedia display, and related literature. We think this will allow us to gain at least 800 new members at the fair, as well as gather many signatures for the 5 cannabis related petitions for State ballot measures! There are going to be other substantial costs involved in this effort. Please help out if you can. You can send a contribution, or a $15 yearly-membership fee to: PDX NORML 4218 SE Glenwood Portland, Oregon 97206 Thanks so much for your time and interest, The Members of DRCNet, PDX NORML email@example.com National NORML: http://www.norml.org Portland NORML: http://www.pdxnorml.org Drug Policy Foundation: http://www.dpf.org DRCNet: http://www.drcnet.org
------------------------------------------------------------------- Young Scots A Generation Of Criminals ('The Scotsman' Says Figures Released By The Scottish Office Yesterday Show One In Ten Of All 18-Year-Old Scots Were Convicted Of A Serious Crime In 1996, But Doesn't Mention The Proportion Convicted Of Illegal Drug Offenses) Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 20:09:43 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Olafur Brentmar
Subject: MN: UK: Young Scots a Generation of Criminals Sender: email@example.com Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Pubdate: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 Source: The Scotsman Contact: Letters_ts@scotsman.com Website: http://www.scotsman.com Author: Jenny Booth, Home Affairs Correspondent YOUNG SCOTS A GENERATION OF CRIMINALS One In Ten 18-Year-Olds Convicted In Court CRIME is a young man's game, with a staggering one in ten of all 18-year-old Scottish youths convicted in the courts of serious crime in 1996. Figures released by the Scottish Office yesterday showed how conviction rates among 18-year-old males are more than 11 times the rate among men over 40. Housebreaking, car theft and the more serious crimes of violence, such as murder, serious assault and handling offensive weapons, were nearly twice as prevalent among young men under 21 as among older criminals. Young women are also at their most likely to have a charge proved against them when aged 18 - but they are convicted at a rate ten times lower than their male counterparts. Despite increasing use of longer sentences in young offenders institutions, the rate of re-offending among young men after release remains at an estimated 80 to 90 per cent. In 1996, offenders under 21 were the most likely to be reconvicted of any age group, according to the statistics revealed in the Scottish Office report Criminal Proceedings in Scottish Courts, 1996. Rather than responding to the efforts of the state to reform them, young men tend to drift out of offending as they get into their twenties, get married and find steady jobs. The shocking conviction rates released yesterday refer only to the courts - they do not include the growing numbers of youngsters aged up to 18 who are being referred to the children's hearings system because of crime. In total, youth crime costs Scotland £730 million a year. The Scottish Liberal Democrat spokesman on crime and prisons, Sir Robert Smith, said that the statistics proved that justice was failing in Scotland. "I am particularly concerned at the levels of conviction among young people. Liberal Democrats believe that this crisis demands a radical overhaul of the entire criminal justice system in Scotland." At their conference in Inverness last week, the Scottish Lib Dems agreed a policy document for root-and-branch reform, including setting up a Ministry for Justice in the Scottish Parliament, and outlawing prison as a punishment for criminals under 18. The report, Young People and Society, calls for earlier action to stop children as young as eight or nine going off the rails, and wider use of intervention schemes like Barnardo's Freagarrach project, which uses intensive one-to-one working to help reform very serious young offenders. "One thing is clear - hard action is what is needed from the government, not the easy words they gave us when they were in opposition," said Sir Robert. Jan Murray, a spokeswoman for Barnardo's Scotland, said that prison was clearly not working and that more help was needed for families at an earlier age to prevent youngsters turning to crime. The Freagarrach project has a 60 per cent success in seriously reducing offending or stopping it altogether among the young people it works with. "Youth crime is costing Scotland around £730 million a year," said Ms Murray. "If we were to invest a fraction of that at a younger age there would be less likelihood of these youngsters re-offending. Sending them to secure accommodation doesn't seem to be tackling the issues and merely sending them back out more hardened young criminals. "Preventative work is very important. It is definitely possible to be better at identifying young children who are displaying difficult behaviour, and may go on to offend as they get older, and at working with them and their families to prevent this happening." Kathleen Marshall, a Glasgow University expert on young people and the law, said it was a well-known phenomenon that there was a bulge in offending in the mid-to-late teens. Scotland had pioneered the hearings system in order that teenagers should not be needlessly criminalised - or turned into heroes among their friends - by being tried in adult courts. Yesterday's report follows criticism by the Chief Inspector of Prisons that young offenders institutions are failing to rehabilitate young people, who were found in prison surveys to be "more full of rage" than adult prisoners in the maximum security Shotts unit where the minimum sentence being served is 10 years.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Army Of Addicts Costs City £400M Each Year ('The Scotsman' Says The Greater Glasgow Drug Action Team Yesterday Released A Three-Year Strategy, 'Getting To Grips With Drugs In Greater Glasgow', Which Says The City Has 10,000 Heroin Addicts Who Buy An Average Of £300 A Week In Opiates) Date: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 20:12:36 -0800 To: email@example.com From: Olafur Brentmar
Subject: MN: UK: Army Of Addicts Costs City 400M [Pounds] Each Year Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: email@example.com Pubdate: Tue, 31 Mar 1998 Source: The Scotsman Contact: Letters_ts@scotsman.com Website: http://www.scotsman.com Author: Karen McVeigh ARMY OF ADDICTS COSTS CITY £400M EACH YEAR About £400 million worth of goods are stolen every year in Glasgow to buy supplies for the city's 10,000 hard-drug users. The cost of the city's ever-increasing drug problem was tallied yesterday by the Greater Glasgow Drug Action Team. The figure is based on the average £300-a-week spent by every addict to feed a heroin habit. To pay for their drugs they have to steal goods worth up to five times the street value, or deal in drugs themselves. In an attempt to break the cycle of drug use and crime that traps users, the team has called on businesses to help recovering addicts by giving them jobs through the Government's welfare to work scheme. The report follows revelations in The Scotsman that as many as 120 addicts could die of an overdose this year, if the recent upward trend in drug-related deaths continues. At the publication of a consultation document which sets out ways of reducing drugs use and minimising the harm caused by drugs, the team has set a target of 50 training and work places in Greater Glasgow during 1998-99. The chairman of Greater Glasgow Health Board, Chris Spry, the chief executive of the team, said that drug misuse was one of the greatest health and social problems facing the city. Drug workers had to work with local people and companies to offer "meaningful alternatives" to a life on drugs, he said, adding: "We need, as part of the welfare to work scheme, the commitment of local businesses to get ex-addicts stabilised and give them a second chance." The three-year strategy, 'Getting to Grips with Drugs in Greater Glasgow', showed that the problem of injecting drugs use, greater in Glasgow than in any other European city, was linked to poor housing, high unemployment and poor social amenities. It states: "Of most immediate concern are the estimated 7,000-10,000 drug injectors and poly-drug users in the area who include some of the most damaged, and damaging, members of our community. "Drug injectors spend an average of 300 a week on drugs, with most of the money being raised from stealing and dealing. The annual cost to the area is more than 400 million. Add to that the huge cost to the police, courts and prison service, the health and social work service, and the size of the burden... becomes clearer." The action team, which aims to tackle drug problems until 2001, recommends a raft of measures, including more drug education for 8- to 12-year-olds in schools, prosecutors studying "constructive" options to jail, more needle and syringe exchanges, and wider use of the heroin substitute, methadone. The team, set up as a recommendation of the Ministerial Task Force on Drugs in Scotland, comprises senior members of Greater Glasgow Health Board, Strathclyde police, Glasgow City Council social work, education and housing departments, the Scottish Prison Service and volunteers. Anti-drug groups welcomed the strategy. Mothers Against Drugs, which was formed after Allan Harper, 13, of Cranhill, Glasgow, died in January of a heroin overdose, said that it would begin to address many of the problems. The group's chairman, Sandra Gilchrist, said: "Addiction to drugs is an illness and should be treated. Users are part of the community... and they should be given the opportunity to get into rehabilitation. "Part of the problem is boredom, lack of work and lack of opportunity. So anything which encourages people into work is a good thing." -------------------------------------------------------------------
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