------------------------------------------------------------------- Signature Count (Paul Loney, An Attorney And Chief Petitioner For The Oregon Cannabis Tax Act Initiative Petition, Says The Campaign Has Officially Collected 38,057 Signatures Of The 73,261 Needed By July) Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 15:22:54 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Belmont Law Center) Subject: Signature count As of 24 May 1998, we have 38,057 signatures counted and stored. Thanks and Praises. Please gather signatures and turn in the filled sheets that you have. The time is now. Paul L
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marijuana 'Clubs' Defy US Order To Close ('The New York Times' Notes Medical Marijuana Dispensaries In Oakland, San Francisco And Marin County Have Remained Open Since US Federal Judge Breyer's May 13 Ruling, Purposely Inviting Contempt Of Court Charges, Which Would Allow Club Officials To Demand A Federal Jury Trial In California) Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 20:54:33 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: Marijuana 'Clubs' Defy U.S. Order to Close Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: email@example.com (Dick Evans) Source: New York Times (NY) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.nytimes.com/ Pubdate: May 24, 1998 MARIJUANA 'CLUBS' DEFY U.S. ORDER TO CLOSE SAN FRANCISCO -- Seeking a showdown with the federal government, the founders of three medical marijuana clubs in this area have defied orders to shut down, hoping to place their fate in the hands of a jury. U.S. District Court Judge Charles Breyer ordered six Northern California clubs closed on May 13 as part of a civil case brought by the Department of Justice, which accused the clubs of distributing marijuana in violation of federal law. Three outlets closed voluntarily. But clubs in Oakland, San Francisco and Marin County have remained open since the ruling, purposely inviting contempt of court charges, the clubs' owners said. Such charges would allow the owners to demand a federal jury trial in California, where voters in 1996 approved a ballot issue legalizing marijuana for medical use. "I'd trust a jury of Californians more than federal bureaucrats in Washington," said one of the owners, Jeffrey Jones, who directs a marijuana outlet in Oakland. Jones invited print and television reporters on Thursday to watch him sell marijuana to customers in an overt challenge to the federal government. The San Francisco club, founded by Dennis Peron, who was a co-author of the 1996 ballot issue, also defied the federal court order, selling cartons of marijuana to its 8,000 members throughout last week. After the 1996 vote, at least 20 clubs sprang up around the state for the declared purpose of distributing marijuana to help people fight the debilitating effects of cancer, AIDS and other illnesses. Critics say the law did not cover mass distribution of the drug. Possession of marijuana still violates federal law, which takes precedence over state statutes. Michael Yamaguchi, the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of California, has described the federal government's civil suit as representing a "measured approach" against California marijuana clubs. A Justice Department spokesman declined to comment on how the agency would respond to the defiance by the clubs, but did not rule out bringing separate criminal drug indictments against the club owners. Federal agents raided a ranch rented by Peron north of San Francisco on May 15, pulling up at least 200 marijuana plants but making no arrests. A San Francisco Superior Court judge declared Peron's San Francisco club "a public nuisance" on Thursday, ordering sheriff's deputies to close the club's five-story building. The state rulings come out of a 1996 civil suit brought by Attorney General Daniel Lungren, a Republican candidate for governor and California's most vocal critic of medical marijuana. San Francisco's district attorney, Terence Hallinan, has sharply criticized the attorney general's opposition to the law, and is part of a coalition of elected officials who have suggested replacing the clubs with a state-sponsored distribution system. The group has scheduled a hearing on May 26 in the state Capitol to discuss adding such a proposal to a related Senate bill that is now under consideration.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marijuana Clubs Defy Judge's Order (Brief 'Associated Press' Version) Date: Mon, 25 May 1998 10:36:29 -0400 From: Scott Dykstra (email@example.com) Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org To: email@example.com CC: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: CanPat - Clubs defy "court" order Sender: email@example.com Marijuana clubs defy judge's order (AP) - Two medical marijuana clubs in California refused to heed a federal judge's order to shut their doors for violating federal laws against distributing drugs. Despite U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer's order, made public Wednesday, the Cannabis Healing Center and the Oakland Cannabis Buyers' Club both refused to close. The ruling covered six clubs targeted by the Justice Department. In his preliminary order last week, Breyer said the November 1996 state ballot initiative legalizing medical marijuana did not override a federal ban on the drug. The measure allowed patients with cancer, AIDS and other conditions that might be helped by marijuana to obtain it legally with a doctor's recommendation.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Doonesbury (Garry Trudeau's Syndicated Cartoon Lampoons The Clinton Administration On Needle Exchange) Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 14:35:23 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: Doonsbury for Sunday, 24 May 1998 on Needle Exchange Sender: email@example.com Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Dick Evans) Source: Doonsbury Pubdate: Sunday, 24 May 1998 Author: Gary Trudeau Editors note: Our newshawk writes: "I know you don't like links, but... http://www2.uclick.com/client/wpc/db/ Dick" Well, because the links expire, and the item stays in our news database long after the link is gone. To see this strip on needle exchange, you may need to use a dropdown at the above site to go to the date, 24 May 1998. Doonesbury is in 1,400 newspapers. When Gary Trudeau does a strip that focuses on our issues, he reaches a very large audience! You may wish to thank him with a short note on his website at: http://www.uexpress.com/ups/comics/db/ Richard Lake Senior Editor; MAPnews, MAPnews-Digest and DrugNews-Digest email: rlake@MAPinc.org http://www.DrugSense.org/drugnews/ For subscription information see: http://www.MAPinc.org/lists/ Quick sign up for DrugNews-Digest, Focus Alerts or Newsletter: http://www.DrugSense.org/hurry.htm
------------------------------------------------------------------- Charlie Sheen Back In Drug Rehabilitation ('Reuters' Says The Los Angeles Actor Overdosed Thursday And Checked Back Into Rehab Sunday After Leaving It And Being Picked Up By Sheriff's Deputies)Date: Mon, 25 May 1998 20:39:47 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: Wire: Charlie Sheen Back In Drug Rehabilitation Sender: email@example.com Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family
Source: Reuters Pubdate: 24 May 1998 CHARLIE SHEEN BACK IN DRUG REHABILITATION LOS ANGELES, (Reuters) - Actor Charlie Sheen checked back into a drug rehabilitation center Sunday, one day after leaving it and being picked up by sheriff's deputies, who took him to a hospital, local broadcasters reported. The 32-year-old actor, star of films like ``Platoon'' and ``Wall Street,'' first checked into the rehabilitation center in the secluded Malibu hills outside Los Angeles Friday after a brief stay at another hospital, to which he was admitted Thursday for a drug overdose. Sheriff's deputies were called by personnel of the center after Sheen left it early Saturday morning in a black limousine he had summoned. Deputies tracked down the limousine and found a ``heavily medicated'' Sheen inside. He was taken to Cedars-Sinai hospital in Los Angeles, according to Sheriff's Deputy Bob Killeen. A spokeswoman for the hospital said he had not been admitted. Radio and television stations reported that Sheen later returned to the drug rehabilitation center. A spokesman for the actor could not be reached Sunday. It was unknown what drug Sheen had taken, but he was in the Robles Medical Center in Thousand Oaks on Thursday complaining of tingling in his hands and trouble walking. In a news conference that day his father, actor Martin Sheen, acknowledged the overdose and said: ``We are in the stages right now of recovery. It is my hope that he will accept his recovery.'' The younger Sheen was given a one-year suspended sentence last June after pleading no contest to a charge of battery in an attack on a girlfriend. He was also ordered to pay a fine and perform 300 hours of community service. During a hearing in the case, Gloria Allred, attorney for the girlfriend, said Sheen was drunk at the time of the alleged battery.
------------------------------------------------------------------- South Dakota To Allow Involuntary Commitment Of Pregnant Mothers Who Drink ('Associated Press' Story In Massachusetts' 'Standard-Times' Says Governor Bill Janklow Told The Legislature In January That Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Afflicts One In Every 500 Children In The United States, But As Many As One In 25 In Some Parts Of South Dakota, And Said The Problem Is Particularly Acute On The State's Nine Indian Reservations) Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 23:00:28 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US SD: South Dakota To Allow Involuntary Commitment Of Pregnant Mothers Who Drink Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: John Smith Source: Standard-Times (MA) Contact: YourView@S-T.com Website: http://www.s-t.com/ Pubdate: Sun. 24 May 1998 Author: Gregg Aamot, Associated Press writer SOUTH DAKOTA TO ALLOW INVOLUNTARY COMMITMENT OF PREGNANT MOTHERS WHO DRINK SIOUX FALLS, S.D. -- South Dakota on July 1 becomes the first state to allow judges to order pregnant women who drink into alcoholism treatment. Legislators passed three laws in March to try to cut the number of cases of fetal alcohol syndrome, a lifelong condition that leaves its victims mentally and physically disabled. "They should throw those women in jail and make them get four or five months of treatment. No question about it," says Dr. Lucy Reifel, who adopted a baby suffering from the syndrome. Reifel, a physician on the Rosebud Sioux Indian Reservation, took in Casey White Hat after convincing his birth mother that he would be better off living with sober parents. Casey, now age 16, is the size of a scrawny 11-year-old. His coordination is bad, his language skills poor. Frequently frustrated when he can't find the right words to express himself, he'll break into gestures and sign language. "With Casey, the condition is variable," Reifel says. "But others can be profoundly retarded -- so retarded that they function at infant levels." Fetal alcohol syndrome afflicts one child out of every 500 in the United States. But in some parts of South Dakota, it affects as many as 20 in 500 children, Gov. Bill Janklow said in a speech to the Legislature in January. It is particularly acute on the state's nine Indian reservations. The state already distributes information about fetal alcohol syndrome to high schools and medical workers, and federal money helps support prenatal programs around the state. But lawmakers felt more was needed. The statutes passed in March made South Dakota the first state to enact laws specifically designed to force pregnant women with alcohol or drug problems into treatment, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. One allows relatives or friends to commit pregnant women to emergency detox centers for up to two days. Another permits judges to confine them to treatment centers for as long as nine months. The third makes drinking while pregnant a form of child abuse. Other states have used that tactic to help social workers intervene when pregnant women are abusing drugs or alcohol. The procedure for forcing a pregnant woman into treatment is the same as for other addicts. A relative files a petition with a circuit judge, who must receive a written report from a lawyer within five days. The woman is granted a hearing, after which the judge decides whether to send her to treatment and for how long. The process can take several weeks. "There's no guarantee this will help that particular child, but we hope it will help the second, third and fourth babies in a family if the mother stops drinking," says state Sen. Barb Everist, who co-sponsored the legislation. Everist says she pushed for the new laws because fetal alcohol syndrome is "totally preventable." Only women who abuse alcohol, not the occasional drinker, would be forced into treatment, she says. "A lot of women still don't understand that even small amounts of alcohol can have an effect," she says. "The key is making sure we educate those women." The U.S. surgeon general first alerted the public 17 years ago about the dangers of drinking while pregnant, but health officials are alarmed by surveys suggesting many women are not heeding the warnings. In 1995, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 3.5 percent of 1,313 pregnant women said they had seven or more alcoholic drinks per week or five or more drinks in one sitting. That was up from 0.8 percent of 1,053 pregnant women surveyed in 1991. In South Dakota, state health officials say 4.7 percent of women surveyed in 1992-96 said they drank during pregnancy. Alcoholism has been a problem for generations in the towns spread across the South Dakota prairie, where numbing isolation and a lack of good jobs are often blamed. State Sen. Paul Valandra, a Democrat who represents the Rosebud reservation, says he supports the Legislature's efforts to curb fetal alcohol syndrome but suggests more needs to be done. "There are greater issues of education and economic development at work here," he says. State laws don't pertain to Indian reservations, but American Indian women who move off reservations or seek medical care elsewhere would be subject to the new laws. Critics argue the measures will violate individual rights and do little for a fetus already damaged by weeks of drinking. Ann Wilson, a University of South Dakota professor who studies early child development, says the new laws could alienate women from friends and relatives who could help them. The causes of fetal alcohol syndrome are unclear, Wilson adds. Alcoholics, especially those living in poverty, often have other health problems that could affect a fetus, she says. State Rep. Scott Eccarius, an eye surgeon who co-sponsored the legislation, says lawmakers ultimately passed the laws because fetal alcohol syndrome "has become an epidemic." "There was a fair amount of concern that this would be too hard on women," he says. "But in the end, it turned out to be popular. Frankly, people realize it's not too much to ask that women behave responsibly when they are pregnant."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Unwarranted Tactics ('New York Times' Columnist Bob Herbert Describes The Case Of A Bronx Woman Suing New York City And Its Police Department For $5 Million After City Prohibition Agents Invaded Her Home And Humiliated Her Without Cause Looking For 'Drugs' - The City Still Hasn't Produced Any Search Warrant) Date: Mon, 25 May 1998 11:17:52 -0700 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US NYT: OPED: Unwarranted Tactics Sender: email@example.com Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Dick Evans) Source: New York Times (NY) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.nytimes.com/ Pubdate: Sun, 24 May 1998 Author: Bob Herbert UNWARRANTED TACTICS Nearly eight years have passed and the city still has not produced the warrant that allowed nearly a dozen police officers to invade the Bronx apartment of Tayibat Akande, a pregnant woman with no criminal record who was hauled away in handcuffs and thrown in jail on a false charge of drug dealing. The cops apparently got a weak tip from a postal inspector and went after Mrs. Akande as if she were an international crime lord. In fact, she was a hard-working, law-abiding woman who would give birth in two months to her first child. The cops said that some postal inspector -- the arresting officer's memory is vague on this -- had said an envelope containing heroin and addressed to Mrs. Akande's husband, Sikiru, had been intercepted. The envelope had come from Nigeria, the couple's original home. The envelope actually contained a perfectly legal Nigerian remedy for morning sickness, but nobody bothered to check that out. Too much trouble. Better to take a chance on trampling the rights of the innocent. The raid was staged on Nov. 2, 1990. A postal inspector posed as a mail carrier and delivered the envelope to the apartment. Mrs. Akande, wearing a nightgown, signed for it and the inspector left. A few minutes later someone knocked at the door again. When Mrs. Akande opened the door, the police came pouring in. They shoved Mrs. Akande against a wall and began ransacking the apartment. It happened that Mrs. Akande was on the phone with her husband, who had called from his job in Brooklyn, when the police came in. A cop picked up the phone and spoke to Mr. Akande, who immediately left work and headed home. A female officer took Mrs. Akande into the bathroom and ordered her to strip. Her body cavities were searched for drugs. There were no drugs in Mrs. Akande or in her apartment, but the police arrested her anyway. They said they believed there were drugs in the envelope, which had not been opened. Mrs. Akande was allowed to get dressed and then was taken away in handcuffs. Her neighbors, she would say later, were "surprised." She said she was weeping and felt "humiliated." Mrs. Akande was charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance and criminal possession with intent to sell. She faced 8 to 25 years on each count. That was on a Friday. On Saturday, with Mrs. Akande still in jail awaiting arraignment, police lab tests determined that the envelope contained nothing illegal. But Mrs. Akande was not released. She was not freed until a judge let her go on her own recognizance on Sunday night. And it was more than a month before the charges against Mrs. Akande were dropped. A trial will begin later this week on a civil suit brought by the Akandes against the city and the Police Department. They are represented by the Manhattan attorneys Marvin Salenger and Robert Sack. Mr. Salenger said the case was bad from the very beginning because the cops used "hearsay upon hearsay," rather than solid police work, as the basis for the arrest. When the arresting officer, Detective Thomas Larkin, was deposed in connection with the suit, he was asked, "Before you went in, did you know anything at all about the people who were in this apartment?" He said, "No." He was asked, "Do you know if they had a prior record?" He said, "No." He was asked if he knew "if they were ever suspected of any prior drug smuggling." He said, "No." At another point, the interrogator said: "So, you obtained the search warrant that you swore to, in fact, without ever having seen the package, is that correct?" "I was aware," said Detective Larkin, "that the package existed." This is the basis for the arrest of someone on a charge that could put her away for decades. "Even as we speak," said Mr. Salenger, "the city still has not given us a copy of the search warrant. We have no proof that there was a valid search warrant, and certainly there was no arrest warrant." Mr. Sack said the city and the Police Department are being sued for false arrest, malicious prosecution, and assault and battery. The couple is seeking damages of $5 million.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Huge Load Of Pot Found In Rental Truck ('Raleigh News' In North Carolina Says The Man With 1,100 Pounds Of Marijuana Valued At $1 Million Says He Didn't Know What Was In His U-Haul, Which Sort Of Makes Sense, Considering He Had Expired Tags And Consented To A Search) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: "MN"
Subject: MN: US: NC: Huge Load Of Pot Found In Rental Truck Date: Mon, 25 May 1998 09:07:45 -0500 Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Walter Latham Pubdate: Sun, 24 May 1998 Source: Raleigh News (NC) Contact: email@example.com WebPage: http://www.news-observer.com/daily/1998/05/24/nc08.html HUGE LOAD OF POT FOUND IN RENTAL TRUCK CHARLOTTE -- Charlotte-Mecklenburg police seized more than 1,100 pounds of marijuana valued at $1 million from a U-Haul truck they had stopped for expired tags. "The marijuana about knocked me down. The smell," Officer J.C. Long said of Friday night's bust in southeast Charlotte. Long and Officer P.W. Siler were patrolling when they spotted the truck with expired Texas tags. They asked if they could search the vehicle, and the officers said the driver consented. "We opened it up. That's what we found," Long said, pointing to 18 bales of pot. "It was just all luck." Long said the driver told officers he had just rented the truck and thought moving boxes were inside. "He's sticking to his story that he didn't know what was in the back of the truck," Long said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Mission Creep - A House Bill To Allow The Military To Be Used To Patrol The Border Is Misguided And Dangerous (Staff Editorial In 'The Orange County Register' Notes All Six Orange County Representatives Voted For House Amendment 648)Date: Tue, 26 May 1998 15:48:10 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: Editorial: Mission Creep - A House Bill To Allow The Military To Be Used To Patrol The Border Is Misguided And Dangerous Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: John W.Black Source: Orange County Register (CA) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.ocregister.com/ Pubdate: Sun, 24 May 1998 MISSION CREEP - A HOUSE BILL TO ALLOW THE MILITARY TO BE USED TO PATROL THE BORDER IS MISGUIDED AND DANGEROUS Memorial Day is an apt moment to reflect on a decision made in the House of Representatives last week: Members passed House Amendment 648, which allows the military to be used to patrol U.S. borders to help other agencies and serve their goals. The amendment authorizes: "The Secretary of Defense may assign members of the armed forces to assist - 1) the Immigration and Naturalization Service in preventing the entry of terrorists, drug traffickers, and illegal aliens into the United States; and 2) the United States Customs Service in the inspection of cargo, vehicles, and aircraft at points of entry into the United States." We question the wisdom of this idea for a very basic reason: the military is trained to perform one kind of job, while the police, INS agents and customs investigators, quite another. The raison d'etre for military personnel is aggression and defense, strategy and tactics, one person acting in concert with a unit. In contrasts, a police officer has a depth of training that covers many of those areas and more - psychological, conflict resolution, behavioral. A police officer serves a community and treats its members accordingly; a sergeant looks for enemies and is prepared to engage them. So the missions are different, the training is different and so is the approach to the job. The danger of deploying the military as police was shown just a year ago. On May 20, 1997, Marine Corporal Clemente Banuelo shot dead Esquiel Hernandez, Jr., an 18-year-old high school student with no criminal record who was shooting a .22 rifle while tending goats on his own farm in Texas near the U.S.-Mexico border. Farmers commonly fire rifles on their own land. Certainly, such a practice is not illegal. Corporal Banuelo isn't to blame because he was trained to storm beaches, not police a border. The military patrols along the border were cancelled after the killing of Mr. Hernandez. But due to House Amdt. 648, such fatal errors could become more likely as the wrong kind of force - military instead of civilian - might be deployed even more extensively. Unfortunately, all six Orange County representatives voted for this amendment. Proponents of the amendment say using the military on the border would be an option, not a mandate. Nevertheless, the amendment opens the door. "If nothing else, the primary goal of the federal government is to secure our nation's borders," Rep. Dana Rochrabacher, Republican of Huntington Beach, told us Friday in defending his vote for the amendment. "If it takes military troops to secure our borders, then they should be permitted to do so." Another problem is that such an approach would stretch even thinner America's over-deployed military. Despite being reduced in size by 40 percent the last eight years, the U.S. military has been given new commitments in Bosnia, Macedonia, Haiti and the Persian Gulf. The U.S. military now has personnel in more than 100 foreign countries. "The U.S. military machine is sputtering along like a WW11 tank that's made too many invasions," recently reported retired Army Col. David Hackworth, America's most decorated living veteran in his Internet "Defending America" column. If existing units already have been depleted, how are they going to take on the vast new mission of patrolling the border? The overall defense bill to which this amendment is attached authorizes $270.4 billion for defense for 1998-99, virtually the same as for the 1997-98 budget. So there won't be any money to ease the military's existing personnel and equipment shortages. California's two senators, Democrats Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer, who is running for re-election, should act to make sure H. Amdt. 648 doesn't survive in the Senate version of the defense spending bill. The appropriate agencies should find civilian responses to these civilian concerns.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Some Lawmakers Clueless About Life On The Border (Staff Editorial In 'San Antonio Express-News' About The Border Bill Sponsored By US Representative James Traficant, A Democrat From Ohio) Date: Wed, 27 May 1998 21:43:53 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US TX: Editorial: Some Lawmakers Clueless About Life On The Border Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Newshawk: isenberd@DynCorp.com (Isenberg, David) Source: San Antonio Express-News Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.expressnews.com/ Pubdate: 24 May 1998 SOME LAWMAKERS CLUELESS ABOUT LIFE ON THE BORDER Lawmakers in the House have found it easy to support a bill that would put military troops on the U.S. border with Mexico. Most, after all, don't live on the border and aren't likely to find themselves in the shoes of Mr. and Mrs. Esequiel Hernández Sr. They are the parents of Esequiel Hernández Jr., the 18-year-old high-schooler from Redford who one year ago was shot by a Marine on a drug patrol. They are as alien to U.S. Rep. James Traficant, D- Ohio, sponsor of legislation that would allow troops to patrol the border, as the Southwest border is to Capitol Hill. U.S. Rep. Charlie Norwood, R-Ga., proved it well last week. "Put the 82nd Airborne on maneuvers down there if you want to stop drugs," he said. Rep. Lamar Smith, R-San Antonio, dutifully has sought answers from the Justice and Defense departments on the circumstances surrounding Hernández's death. Smith, who heads the House Immigration Subcommittee, also has pledged to convene a hearing on the shooting and to discuss the use of military forces on the border. But the understanding seems to stop with him. Traficant since last year has pushed his proposal, ignoring the pleas of Hernández's family and many others living on the border who don't want their back yards to become a militarized zone. Questions remain in the Hernández incident, especially because the young man was not involved in any wrongdoing when he was shot, let alone involved with the drug trafficking that the border troops were intended to stop. Those questions beg Congress to at least stall Traficant's proposal. Surely lawmakers will find that the answer to preventing tragedies like the one in Redford won't come by putting troops on the border.
------------------------------------------------------------------- New Heights Of Hypocrisy (Letter To The Editor Of 'The Dallas Morning News' Notes Drug War Hypocrites Are Too Busy Taking Viagra In Pursuit Of A Drug-Induced Sexual Experience To Ask What Kind Of Message It Sends To Children) Date: Sat, 30 May 1998 11:15:18 -0800 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US TX: PUB LTE: New Heights of Hypocrisy Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: John Wilson (http://www.mapinc.org/DPFT/) Pubdate: Sun, 24 May 1998 Source: Dallas Morning News Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.dallasnews.com NEW HEIGHTS OF HYPOCRISY Drug war hypocrisy rises to new levels with sex and drugs rolled up in the same pill. Viagra is a drug that is prescribed to enhance and increase sexual activity. Sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll; Americans are "tripping" over one another in pursuit of a drug-induced sexual experience. The battle cry, "What kind of message are we sending the children?" is little more than pillow talk among the zero-tolerance mind-set and the total abstinence to sex messengers. Drug war hypocrites are too busy bathing in the afterglow to acknowledge their own blatant drug-taking, sex-seeking behavior with this new drug. Why isn't anyone asking, "What about the children?" in the case of Viagra and consenting sexual behavior? Because adults having sex or using drugs responsibly, whether it be marijuana or Viagra, is an example of a rational drug policy as it applies to adults. And a rational drug policy is something that drug war advocates don't want you to think about. Have a cocktail and some Viagra. Ask about war, that's the violent message we are sending the children. JOHN WILSON, Waco
------------------------------------------------------------------- Sex Drug's Risk Feared ('Calgary Sun' Describes Several Social Side Effects Arising From The New Widespread Use Of Viagra, Pfizer's New Drug For Male Impotence, Including Viagra Widows, Women Whose Men Turn Elsewhere As They 'Try To Make Up For Lost Time') From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Matt Elrod) To: email@example.com Subject: Sex drug's risk feared Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 08:58:08 -0700 Lines: 114 Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: Calgary Sun Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: May 24, 1998 SEX DRUG'S RISK FEARED CREDIT: By RASHIDA DHOOMA -- Sun Media It's a magic pill that's being hailed as the miracle drug of the '90s. But as the world clamors for Viagra, there's an emerging worry that the impotency drug may be a medical, psychological and social minefield. * Already there have been reports of men dying after taking the drug -- possibly the result of interaction with other drugs, or heart attacks resulting from over-exertion. * It's not just men who are eager to take Viagra. Although clinical studies are just under way, reports that the drug may help females achieve orgasm have seen doctors pestered by women eager to match their mates newfound sexual performance. * HIV-positive gay men are being cautioned against Viagra because of unknown side-effects when the drug mixes with anti-AIDS medication. * A burgeoning black market in the drug -- in part on the Internet -- has medical officials worried the drug is being taken without proper guidance. * Pharmacies in the U.S. are already waging price wars to sell the drug. * Indications that the massive and sudden popularity of the drug being used by one-million American males has already begun to take a social toll -- Viagra widows. Some men are already turning elsewhere as they try to make up for lost time. "Viagra's going to be the home-wrecker of the future. In fact, we're already starting to see it," says Dr. Carlos Nazir, a urologist near Miami. The man's rarin' to go, but she's resigned to a life without intercourse, he says. "It's not a new phenomenon. It has been happening ever since impotent men began regaining their sex lives after surgery or other treatments. The difference is we're talking astronomical numbers because of the easy accessibility of Viagra," Nazir says. Less than a month after news of Viagra's potency hit the news, Dr. Domeena Renshaw, director of Loyola University Sexual Dysfunction Clinic near Chicago, has already seen a casualty. "I had a couple where he's demanding sex since he went on Viagra and she's not up to it," says Renshaw. She has also met women who want to slip Viagra into their spouses' food and drink to boost performance, as well as confidence Even with Viagra, couples still need to be loving and do more caring and sharing, Renshaw says. "Viagra only helps with the mechanical aspect of the encounter," she says. Dr. Kenneth Goldberg of the Male Health Institute at Baylor Health Centre in Dallas, fears men may become psychologically dependent on Viagra to perform. "Women could also feel inadequate because of their perceived lack of attractiveness to excite their partner," he says. "And men will be under pressure to utilize their $10 investment, which will then put pressure on the spouse to comply whether she wants to or not." Men could also start to wonder that "maybe she's the reason" he can't get an erection, Goldberg says, and may look elsewhere to confirm this doubt. Nazir says we're going to see more men, particularly older ones, parting from their wives as a direct result of Viagra. "Take a couple, both in their mid-60s. Their interest in sex is totally opposite," he says. He says while men may lose their ability to perform, their interest in sex remains strong. Estrogen-deprived women, on the other hand, tend to drift away from libido. After successful treatment for impotency, men often look to younger women. "While there are exceptions to the rule, where couples are able to work through their differences because they're committed to each other, the sad reality is that in most cases there's a profound ripple effect of his newfound ability," Nazir says. "Face it. A man in his 50s, even though he's greying, is still a catch. A greying 50-year-old woman? It's a double standard, but it's reality." Nazir also cautions women who're critical of their husband's lack of sexual drive. "With Viagra, you might just get it, and suddenly you're faced with a partner who's able and willing, but are you?" he asks. Viagra, Nazir says, is going to put many relationships to the test. "I'm not empowering him to leave her. I'm just making him the best that he can be," Nazir says.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Unglamorous MS Patient Denied His Gold ('Calgary Herald' Columnist Naomi Lakritz Contrasts The Case Of Canadian Olympic Gold Medalist Ross Rebagliati With That Of Medical Marijuana Defendant Grant Krieger Of Preeceville, Saskatchewan, Who Fears Losing His Family Because Of A Police Vendetta That Began Last June When He Lit Up A Joint On The Calgary Courthouse Steps In Support Of Another Medical Marijuana Patient) Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 10:31:59 -0700 Subject: Unglamorous MS patient denied his gold From: "Deb Harper" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: mattalk (email@example.com) CC: MAP (firstname.lastname@example.org) Source: Calgary Herald Pub Date: Sun 24 May 1998 Contact: email@example.com Author: Naomi Lakritz Unglamorous MS patient denied his gold Ross Rebagliati kept his medal, but Grant Krieger fears losing his family. Both men made the headlines because they smoked pot, but that's where any similarity between them ends. You see, Krieger is not one of the beautiful people. Rebagliati is. And the difference in the way they've been treated is not a pretty commentary on our social mores. "When Ross won the Olympic gold medal in Japan, I realized we live in a double standard. Canadian officials said it's only a little bit of pot so give him his medal," Krieger said. "If it's only a little bit of pot, why have I got charges against me?" Why, indeed? It's because the Preeceville, Sask. man is no fair-haired boy on a snazzy snowboard. He couldn't climb onto a snowboard even if he wanted to. Grant Krieger has multiple sclerosis and he smokes pot to relieve the symptoms of the disease he's been battling for 20 years, a disease which so ravaged his quality of life that a few years ago, he tried to kill himself with an overdose of sleeping pills and Demerol. "I couldn't breathe. I couldn't swallow and I shook so bad. I had to wear a damn diaper. So I took those pills and I really didn't want to wake up. When I woke up in the hospital I thought, 'I'm alive and I don't want to be.'" He credits marijuana with making him mobile again. No more canes, crutches or wheelchair. His incontinence is under control and he can venture out without fear of embarrassment. Not long ago, this 43-year-old man who was once bedridden and yearning for death, enjoyed a picnic at Banff with his daughter and even climbed a small hill. "Tell me my quality of life hasn't improved!" he says with relish. He ran afoul of the law when he lit up a joint last June on the Calgary courthouse steps in support of another man who uses pot for medicinal purposes. Krieger's case is still before the courts but there's another side to his story that has nothing to do with legalities. It has to do with hypocrisy and how willing we are to forgive the foibles, illicit as they may be, of the people we put on pedestals. We are not in the habit of putting the disabled on pedestals and we do not forgive them their disabilities. So badly did we need Ross Rebagliati to be our hero at Nagano that we rushed to make things all right for him. No one rushes to make things right for the Grant Kriegers of this world. Krieger doesn't care about partying hearty and getting high. He just wants to be able to get through his day. He doesn't even believe pot should be legalized except for carefully regulated medicinal purposes. Meanwhile, the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada keeps a cautious distance from the controversy. Dr. Bill McIlroy, the society's medical adviser, was unavailable for comment but his Toronto office has issued a statement saying there is no scientific basis for using marijuana to treat MS and no controlled studies have been done, although anecdotal reports indicate it may be useful in a few cases. A nurse at the Foothills Hospital MS Clinic says doctors there won't discuss it. Krieger, who plans to move to Calgary soon, realizes he's fighting a lonely battle, but he's not about to throw in the towel. "Cannabis is a drug I won't let go of," he says. "It's done more for me than any pharmaceutical." It's also caused him more grief. "They raided the house and charged my wife with possession. And my daughter went off the deep end over this. She's a law student and she can't live with me because she could get charged, too, if they raid us again. They're busting up families -- but Ross got his medal." Contact Naomi Lakritz at (403) 235-7134.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Re - War On Drugs Is A Losing Battle (Letter To The Editor Of 'The Calgary Sun' Praises Bill Kaufmann's Column - Plus Two More Pro-Reform Letters) Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 10:31:07 -0700 Subject: LTE'S - Calgary Sun From: "Deb Harper" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: mattalk (email@example.com) CC: MAP (firstname.lastname@example.org) Source: Calgary Sun Pub Date: May 24, 1998 Contact: email@example.com Comment: Parenthetical remarks are the Sun editor's I AM writing in response to Bill Kaufmann's May 18 column, "War on drugs is a losing battle." The idea of a "war on drugs" is a band-aid to an age-old human condition. Particularly harmful is a war on the small percentage of people using controlled drugs experimentally and discovering some of these drugs relieve chronic pain they didn't know they had. You may ask how that is possible. A poor person, or someone in chronic crisis may not be aware or wish to recognize the constant pain of a root canal infection, a bone spur, etc. When this same person uses heroin, they can enjoy the "pain-healing" properties of opiates and not necessarily become aware of the main cause of their pain symptoms. This pain-relief/pain-gain cycle can lead to repeated use of opiates; which can lead to addiction. This is identical to the addiction process of a teen smoker who finds "calm" in a cigarette and begins to associate smoking with calmness. This physical process of experimentation and deliberate opiate and psychedelic drug use is not in itself a health problem. The effects of a war on addiction, however, are a "health" problem. [Anonymous] (Sounds like pipe dream to us [Anonymous].) *** RE: THE COMMENT on the letters page that "legalizing drugs would kill more people and cause..." On what do you base your assertion? It certainly isn't the experience of countries having liberalized drug policy. In fact, in Switzerland, government distribution of heroin has worked so well, to destroy the black market and curb crime, 73% of the voters elected to keep it. In Holland, the experience has been similar. On the other hand, the U.S. has some of the harshest, most draconian drug laws in the world and violence is rampant. How about supporting the claim with some scientific or even anecdotal evidence? Gregory Handevidt (The more accessible and accepted a narcotic, the more addicts there will be.) ***"WATCH BELGIUM'S petty crime rate soar." was the response to a letter of May 21 regarding Belgium legalizing marijuana. What evidence do you have that cannabis causes any crime other than the violation of an insane prohibition law based on Reefer Madness claims that pot causes mayhem, murder, burglary, rape, racial mixing, insanity and a few other felonies. If you cannot prove these accusations, the foundation for your prohibition disappears, so how about some proof? How many marijuana homicides has the Sun reported in the last 60 years? And how many related to alcohol? What hypocrites! Meanwhile, how about offering some factual testimony that marijuana use has ever caused an increase in crime anywhere? Like in Holland for starters. Your intellectual bankruptcy is showing. Redford Givens San Francisco (We're not just talking about marijuana here, so chill out.) *** From: "air" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: (email@example.com) Subject: EDITOR MANGLES LETTER Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 12:33:45 -0700 When I sent the following letter to the Calgary Sun editor, I included a detailed description of prohibition origins and the relatively minor effects of long-time opiate addiction. They edited my rather scientific and sober letter to be a "pipe dream". I think we should boycott their LTE section and write to their competition instead. >Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org >Source: Calgary Sun >Contact: email@example.com >Pubdate: May 24, 1998 > >Comment: Parenthetical remarks by the Sun editor : headline by hawk > >I AM writing in response to Bill Kaufmann's May 18 column, "War on drugs >is a losing battle." The idea of a "war on drugs" is a band-aid to an >age-old human condition. Particularly harmful is a war on the small >percentage of people using controlled drugs experimentally and >discovering some of these drugs relieve chronic pain they didn't know >they had. You may ask how that is possible. A poor person, or someone in >chronic crisis may not be aware or wish to recognize the constant pain >of a root canal infection, a bone spur, etc. > >When this same person uses heroin, they can enjoy the "pain-healing" >properties of opiates and not necessarily become aware of the main cause >of their pain symptoms. This pain-relief/pain-gain cycle can lead to >repeated use of opiates; which can lead to addiction. This is identical >to the addiction process of a teen smoker who finds "calm" in a >cigarette and begins to associate smoking with calmness. This physical >process of experimentation and deliberate opiate and psychedelic drug >use is not in itself a health problem. The effects of a war on >addiction, however, are a "health" problem. > >[Anonymous] > >(Sounds like pipe dream to us Aaron.)
------------------------------------------------------------------- Police Make Record Haul Of Drug Khat (According To 'The London Free Press' In Ontario, The Royal Canadian Mounted Police Say They've Intercepted A Record-Breaking Amount - Nearly A Tonne This Month - Of The Kenyan-Grown Plant Outlawed Last May, To Keep It From Hitting The Streets Of Toronto) Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 23:24:12 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Canada: Police Make Record Haul Of Drug Khat Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: London Free Press (Canada) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.canoe.ca/LondonFreePress/home.html Pubdate: May 24, 1998 POLICE MAKE RECORD HAUL OF DRUG KHAT TORONTO -- The RCMP say they've intercepted a record-breaking amount -- nearly a tonne this month -- of the East African drug khat to keep it from hitting the streets of Toronto. And members of the city's Somali community applaud the seizures, saying their countrymen can be refused landed status if they're nabbed with khat, which was outlawed last May. Sgt. Len Lanza said more than 777 kilograms, worth about $400,000, of the stimulant was confiscated in 12 seizures at Pearson airport this month. The Mounties seize about 400 kilograms monthly. He said only one man was arrested for smuggling the drug while the remainder was sent by cargo delivery. "This is a record amount for one month," Lanza said. "Disposing of it is now a problem for us." Khat is a Kenyan-grown plant whose bark acts as a stimulant when chewed. It's widely used by Somalis, Kenyans and other East Africans. Police said the plant, which has a shelf-life of seven days, is grown in Africa, shipped to England and then smuggled into Canada.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Prohibition Will Not Stop Drug Use, Conference Told ('Canberra Times' Covers The Australian Drug Law Reform Foundation Conference - ACT Health Minister Michael Moore Continued His Attack On The Prime Minister's Decision To Appoint The Salvation Army's Brian Watters To Head The Australian National Council On Drugs, Declaring That Mr Watters' Prohibitionist Stance Was 'Putting Our Children At Risk') Date: Tue, 26 May 1998 10:22:46 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Australia: Prohibition Will Not Stop Drug Use, Conference Told Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Ken Russell Source: Canberra Times (Australia) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.canberratimes.com.au/ Pubdate: Mon, 24 May 1998 PROHIBITION WILL NOT STOP DRUG USE, CONFERENCE TOLD ACT Health Minister Michael Moore continued yesterday his attack on the Prime Minister's decision to appoint the Salvation Army's Brian Watters to head the Australian National Council on Drugs, declaring that Mr Watters' prohibitionist stance was 'putting our children at risk'. He called on Prime Minister John Howard to remove Mr Watters and to base future decisions on drug issues on evidence rather than secret reports from the head of his department, Max Moore-Wilton. The council to be headed by Mr Watters will oversee the Federal Government's $187 million Tough on Drugs campaign. Mr Moore said he had no problem with Mr Watters in his role with the Salvation Army, but when he was appointed to a national strategic body he had to be more open-minded. When he saw such a person criticising the methadone program, he could not allow the matter to pass. Speaking at the conclusion of an Australian Drug Law Reform Foundation conference in Canberra, Mr Moore said the foundation and The Families and Friends for Drug Law Reform would be targeting marginal seats at the next federal election, not to unseat sitting Members but in a bid to educate the electorate that drug prohibition did not work and only created corruption and death. A member of The Families and Friends for Drug Law Reform, Bronwyn Barnard, said the present approach was to 'discriminate against and marginalise young people to the point of death' but still there was no intervention. Ms Barnard, whose brother Dean Forster died from heroin-related causes at the age of 28, asked how the Federal Government could continue to enforce a policy which was so destructive. 'They will never, ever, ever stop the availability of this drug,' she said. But the only option provided was to 'chase them [drug users] around and lock them up'. All that the thousands of families affected by drug addiction were being offered was 'fear and persecution'. The foundation issued a 10-point plan for effective drug laws. It prefaced its plan with the observation: 'Prohibition has not worked. 'It causes increased corruption, crime, disease and death. 'We aim to take the profit out of the illicit drug industry and effectively confront Australia's illicit drug problem.' The foundation said drug use should be treated as a health and social issue, rather than a law-enforcement problem, and that law enforcement, education and treatment should be funded equally. Criminal sanctions for personal drug use should be removed, and the production and sale of cannabis should be regulated and taxed. Drug treatment and needle exchange programs should be expanded to meet demand and establish safe injecting facilities. A wide range of drug treatment options, including the medical prescription of heroin, should be trialled and rigorously evaluated, the foundation said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Jail Chief Tells Of Drug Scams ('The Sunday Times' In Australia Quotes Casuarina Prison Deputy Superintendent James Schilo Saying About A Third Of Inmates In The State's Toughest Jail Use 'Drugs' - Guards Can Only Curb The Flow Inside But Never Stamp It Out) Date: Sun, 24 May 1998 23:52:11 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Australia: Jail Chief Tells of Drug Scams Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Ken Russell Pubdate: Sun, 24 May 1998 Source: Sunday Times (Australia) Contact: email@example.com JAIL CHIEF TELLS OF DRUG SCAMS ABOUT a third of criminals in the State's toughest jail use drugs. And prison bosses admit they can only curb the flow inside - but never stamp it out. Casuarina Prison deputy superintendent James Schilo admitted a crackdown on prison visits - the main source of drugs - would have disastrous consequences. "Casuarina is a $100 million asset. I believe if we were to have non-contact visits for all prisoners we would lose the prison within a matter of hours - they would burn it down," Mr Schilo said. The stark assessment of Casuarina's drug problem came during an inquest into the death of remand prisoner Stephen Maslin, who died from a heroin overdose in February. Mr Schilo said there was a delicate balancing act between stopping drugs and maintaining a manageable prison population. Since October, 481 visitors had been strip-searched and 19 had been caught with drugs. "By not having barrier visits we run a risk . . . that drugs will come into prisons," he said. "But we have to weigh that out for the benefit of the other prisoners and the community." Maintaining family contacts reduced repeat offending and ultimately benefited the community when prisoners were released, he said. "We try to minimise the effects of drugs in prison and the trafficking of drugs in prison but we will never stop that," Mr Schilo said. Maslin, 41, a heroin addict with a $900-a-day habit, was in custody just three days when he snorted lethal heroin an hour after a contact visit. Most drugs were smuggled in by prison visitors, Mr Schilo told the inquest. "The majority of times it is passed through the mouth by having drugs in a balloon and kissing and passing it across," Mr Schilo said. "The prisoner would then swallow that and regurgitate it later and share it around. "Another way is that a person (visitor) will conceal it and drop it in coffee. "People might pass it across to a prisoner and he will slip it down his tracksuit pants and put it in his rectum and get it out later." Mr Schilo gave evidence that from last July to last month, of 411 drug tests, 144 prisoners, or 35 per cent, tested positive.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Cannabis Campaign - Tune In For A Desert Island Spliff (Britain's 'Independent On Sunday' Notes That Celebrity Artists Interviewed On The BBC's Radio 4 Program, 'Desert Island Discs,' Over The Last 56 Years Have Occasionally Wished For A Stockpile Of Marijuana Rather Than Their Favorite Music - A Spokeswoman For The Programme Explained, 'It Is The Castaway's Own Island, You See, So They Can Make Up The Rules') Date: Sat, 23 May 1998 17:18:16 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: UK: Cannabis Campaign: Tune In for a Desert Island Spliff Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Newshawk: Martin Cooke (email@example.com) Contact: e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Mail: Independent on Sunday 1 Canada Square, Canary Wharf London E14 5DL England Editor's note: The IoS Cannabis Campaign has web pages at http://www.independent.co.uk/sindypot/index.htm Pubdate: Sun, 24 May 1998 TUNE IN FOR A DESERT ISLAND SPLIFF CANNABIS use may still be outlawed in Britain, but there is another island in a parallel universe - peopled chiefly by British expatriates - where the rules are more relaxed. The notional shores of Radio 4's famous desert island are, by now, surely plumed with smoke from the roll-ups of celebrity castaways. In the 56 years since Desert Island Discs was first broadcast, at least six guests have opted for the drug, or considered it, as their luxury item. This month yet another joined the rebellious ranks. Eschewing the choice of a piano, currently number one in popularity, the psychologist Susan Blackmore asked for a supply of cannabis. Her request did not ruffle interviewer Sue Lawley, who seamlessly drew the programme to its accustomed close. Later, a spokeswoman for the programme explained its policy on soft drugs: "It is the castaway's own island, you see, so they can make up the rules." It was not always so. When Norman Mailer asked to take an endless supply of the drug with him, Roy Plomley, the programme's creator, gently refused. Use of an illegal substance was not to be condoned by the BBC. In 1982, the actress Pamela Stephenson's revelations about her LSD experiences were completely excised. Sir Peregrine Worsthorne, former editor of the Sunday Telegraph, caused a stir when he asked Ms Lawley for mild hallucinogens in 1992. However, by 1996, writer Hanif Kureishi's choice of marijuana seeds went almost unremarked. The American lyricist Fran Landesman was not so lucky. Her request for a supply of the drug last year provoked a stream of complaints. While the campaigning IoS must support those who have chosen, and will continue to choose, cannabis as their imagined solace, it would be churlish for the newspaper not to take its hat off to Desmond Tutu, who selected rum-and-raisin ice-cream, or to Arthur Scargill, who ordered the "Mona Lisa", and finally, with reservations, to composer Richard Rodney Bennett for his domesticated choice of a circular knitting needle. e-mail your comments to email@example.com
------------------------------------------------------------------- Weekly Action Report On Drug Policies, Year 4, Number 12 (Summary For Activists Of International Drug Policy News, From CORA In Italy - Special Edition On The Ninth CORA Congress June 5-7 In Paris) Date: Mon, 25 May 1998 04:31:03 -0700 (PDT) From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: "CORAFax -EN-" (email@example.com) Date: Mon, 25 May 1998 13:17:02 +0000 Subject: CORAFax 12 special (EN) Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org ANTIPROHIBITIONIST OF THE ENTIRE WORLD .... Year 4 No. 12, May 24 1998 (SPECIAL EDITION 9th CONGRESS) *** Weekly Action Report on Drug Policies Edited by the CORA - Radical Antiprohibitionist Coordination, federated to - TRP-Transnational Radical Party (NGO, consultive status, I) - The Global Coalition for Alternatives to the Drug War *** director: Vincenzo Donvito All rights reserved *** http://www.agora.stm.it/coranet mailto:email@example.com *** 9th CORA CONGRESS PARIS 5 - 7 JUNE 1998 PROHIBITIONISM ON DRUGS IS A CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY *** Dear friend, CORA is an association of European antiprohibitionist citizens and politicians, which works towards legalization as a method of coping with the drug problem. CORA looks positively upon the growth of political strategies involving depenalization or harm reduction, but believes they are still insufficient in relation to the end they pursue: defeat of illegal and criminal drug traffic. * THE PARIS CONGRESS CORA will hold its congress in Paris, from the 5th to the 7th of June, and launch its campaign "Prohibitionism on drugs: A crime against humanity". Although the congress is open to everyone, only CORA members will have the right to intervene during speeches. One of our goals is to achieve at least 100 new memberships in France, and therefore invite you to let us know as soon as possible your intention to participate in the congress. We have chosen to hold this political convention in Paris for two reasons. The first is that many political signals from France lead us to believe that CORA could find fertile grounds for asserting its presence there, as it has done already in Italy and Belgium. Emmanuel Raiter, a personality close to Jean-Marie Le Pen's National Front, in the confidential letter included in his report on drug lobbies describes CORA in fact as the propelling force behind European antiprohibitionism. The second reason is that France is becoming, together with Sweden,the bulwark of prohibitionism by using aggressive political strategies which eliminate every internal debate while trying to impose crude repressive policies on other EU countries -in particular, and in illegitimate ways, on the Low Countries and the pragmatic, tolerant stance they hold in regard to the drug question. * PROHIBITIONISM ON DRUGS IS A CRIME Together with those who do not believe in the illusion of compromises such as permissiveness or plain harm reduction CORA has always chosen a road which implies at one time great responsibilities and unique opportunities of political battle: that of a radical denunciation of prohibitionist politics. The bureaucrats of prohibitionism are surely aware of this, and not only in France. Proof of this are the procedures that Swedish Eurodeputee Mr.Anderson has started to expel CORA from its offices in the European Parliament. In this moment it is necessary to strengthen our ideas and widen our political goals. After the last congress in Brussels, during which the idea of politically organizing European antiprohibitionists was born, our Parisian congress will launch the "Prohibitionism on drugs: A crime against humanity" campaign. This slogan is meant to evidence the fact that we should not passively accept prohibitionism on drugs as a mere political error which time will eventually heal. It is necessary to fight those moral and ethical stances which inevitably end up being fatal for democracy, legality and science and which have also disastrous social, economic and sanitary consequences. * THE PRESENT PROHIBITIONIST POLITICAL STRATEGY No matter which way one looks at it, prohibitionism contains all elements of a criminal plan. Every year it kills thousands of drug consumers; it reduces thousands of others in precarious conditions; it facilitates, willingly, the spreading of deadly diseases; it allows, directly and concretely, international criminal organizations to strive upon drug traffic; it finances all sorts of other criminal activity; it is the basis and justification for the repressive politics of dictatorships and pseudo democracies. These crimes are committed intentionally and with great lucidity. Prohibitionism is the most sophisticated form through which barbarity fights civilization. It is therefore not only a crime, but a war crime at that. These crimes hit tens of thousands of drug consumers that get thrown by the State into the hands of criminal organizations, or exposed to the contact of lethal viruses. They hit drug cultivators, once plain farmers, who are now slaves of the international drug racket and get in turn treated as criminals. They hit all those citizens who are victims of the daily violence which derives more from the need of getting hold of drugs and from the gigantic profit behind drug traffic than from the drugs themselves. We find ourselves now in a situation pervaded by new synthetic drugs like Ecstasy which do not have to be grown and can be concocted anonymously in any kitchen, in any European country. This happens because the new frontier of the war against drugs needs a monstrous bureaucratic machine, capable of systematically spreading violence through the force of ideology. Does all this seem exaggerated? The last report of the International Organization for Control on Drugs (an independent body composed of selected personnel chosen by the State members of the UN that has the sole task of monitoring drug diffusion) says that drug consumption is going up because of rock music and Internet and because antiprohibitionist organizations which are favorable to legalization are responsible for the diminishing of controls. Antiprohibitionist organizations, they say, should be limited as much as possible, even through use of special laws which could restrict their freedom of speech, a superfluous freedom, after all... While it is still available we will continue to use that freedom, and will do so on the occasion of our congress in Paris, in the European country which gave birth to human rights but in which mere talking about legalization constitutes a crime punishable according to a Nazi-Stalinist law (the sadly famous LC630 article of the Penal Code) that sees any unconventional discourse on drugs suspectable of wanting to portray them in a positive light. We, instead, will talk about drugs. We will do so in Paris, in one of the Parliament halls where our congress will open on the 5th of June. Those being the premises, we are certain that someone will try to ban our congress. * THE DEMONSTRATION IN FRONT OF THE UNITED NATIONS On the 7th, eve of the UN conference that will repropose, under the careful sponsorship of UNDCP President Pino Arlacchi, a planetary version of prohibitionism (as denounced by the Transnational Radical Party to the Commission on Drugs in Vienna) we will hold a demonstration in front of the UN building, contemporarily with other similar events in the rest of the world to celebrate the "1998 Global Days Against the Drug War". * FUTURE PROJECTS This is how we intend to act now with the arms of nonviolence for the right to freedom, legality and democracy: - Promoting and/or supporting the ANTIPROHIBITIONIST ELECTORAL LISTS IN THE EUROPEAN UNION in sight of the next European Parliament elections in 1999 and asking other organizations, parties and public personalities to bring forth the instance of legalization. The object, at this very moment, is not to directly organize those lists, but to create the necessary conditions for a stronger presence of antiprohibitionists in the future Parliament. - Organizing a special campaign of auto - financing that may allow us to gain the minimum but indispensable tools of action, namely the adequate technological means of communication. - Organizing and craeting a net of nonviolent activists throughout Europe, who are ready to substantially support their hopes and goals, also through subscribing memberships and contributions to CORA (the minimum entrance-fee is of 100.000 Lire for year 1998) and announcing their participation to the congress. Dr. Eric Picard (secretary) Marco Cappato (treasurer) * If you intend to participate in our congress please contact the following people in Brussels: - Guendaline De Sario, phone 0032-2-2482827 - Ottavio Marzocchi, phone 0032-2-2842258 - mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org We attend your answer thanking you for your kind attention, no matter what you decide to do. *** IMPORTANT AND URGENT The congress is open to everyone. For reasons of organization it is necessary that you file in your membership in due time. Name______________________________________________________ Last name_________________________________________________ Address___________________________________________________ Zip Code_________________City_____________________________ Email___________________Phone_____________________________ Fax_____________________ Age_________Profession____________________________________ - I intend to participate in the Paris congress, during the following period: ( ) Friday 5th of June in Parliament ( ) Saturday the 6th of June at the Maison de la Chimie Sum deposited (indicate currency)_______________ for ( ) membership or ( ) contribution to CORA to the following accounts: * PARIS C/O Reseau Voltaire F-93201 Saint-Denis cedex Tel. ++33. (0) 1.48092054 FAx ++33. (0) 1.48092015 Account No. 10067.00101.10320834404 * BRUSSELS C/O PE rue Wiertz D3-7H252 1047 Brussels Email: cora.belgique@agora;it Tel. ++32. (0) 2-2847189/2842258 Fax ++32. (0) 2-2949198 Account No. 310.1075919.81 URL HTTP:// www.agora.stm.it/coranet MINIMUM FEE FOR CORA MEMBERSHIP IS 100.000 LIRE *** ABOUT CORA Cora, the Radical Antiprohibitionist Co-ordination is the political organization of atiprohibitionists in the European Union. CORA was founded in 1988. Its prime end is to defeat the prohibitionist strategy against drugs that has favored the continuous growth of an international system of mafias, violence and corruption and nourished authoritarian regimes, endangering civil rights and democracy throughout the world. CORA supports legalization of drugs. It is in favor of effective laws to regulate production, sale and consumption of drugs. It wants to prevent repression which, transforming a social problem into one of criminal and public order, is an obstacle in the way of curing and reintegrating drug addicts. CORA is committed to eliminate the widespread ignorance about different kinds of drugs and their effects. This type of confusion exposes consumers to serious risk and does not allow a rational attitude when confronting the drug problem. CORA pursues legalization of drugs as a method to control consumption, diminish risks of drug abuse and hence reduce deaths for overdose and spreading of diseases like AIDS. CORA does NOT want liberalization of drugs, because that already exists. Drugs are circulate profusely and without any type of control. Drug traffic is in the hands of the Mafia, and in any city, in any country there are bars, parks, private houses, stores, streets and squares where every day, at any given hour, it is possible to buy illegal drugs. Prisons and military barracks are no exception. Drug pushers strive, because drugs, if prohibited, are enormously profitable. The drug addict, who continuously is in need of his dose, has no choice but to steal and resell. Ultimately, organized crime makes gigantic profits which get recycled through legal activities and allow it to gain control of politics, economy and State. CORA is an association open to everyone. It counts among its members citizens and politicians of every extraction. CORA finances itself through membership fees, contributions and auto-financing campaigns. CORA PURSUES ON THE SOCIAL AND SANITARY LEVEL - transferal of present financing for repression to treatment and cures; - more flexibility and accessibility to cures and reintegration for drug addicts, with consequent reduced spreading of diseases like AIDS; -Guaranteed quality standards of drug production and elimination of all poisonous substances today used for cutting drugs sold on the illegal market; -A correct campaign of information on risks of drug consumption and abuse; ON THE ECONOMIC LEVEL - Ending infiltration of recycled money from drug traffic in the financial markets; ON THE PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION LEVEL -Freeing courts from the thousands of trials that involve drug consumers, addicts and small dealers; -reducing overpopulation in prisons ; - reduction of controls on the frontiers. ON THE LEVEL OF PUBLIC ORDER -Reduction of theft and petty crime usually committed by those who need money to buy drugs; -Higher safety in cities; -higher efficiency of police forces, who can concentrate on serious crime; -freeing of those economic resources for southern countries, which are today controlled by the power of drug mafias. - taxation of drug products to cover social costs of drug abuse; ON THE INSTITUTIONAL LEVEL -politics which are more honest and freed from corruption and criminal intimidation; -wider respect for freedom of citizens; -higher respect of laws; - end of criminal infiltration in politics, economy and justice; CORA is an association federated to the Radical Transnational Party, a Non Governmental Organization of first category as recognized by the UN OLD (Observatory of Laws on Drugs) CORA has instituted the Observatory of Laws on Drugs (OLD) with the intent to periodically verify the impact of anti-drug politics. The Observatory of Laws on Drugs stands upon donations from official organizations and works with statistical and scientific methods. It publishes reports and monographies. PAA Parliamentarians for Antiprohibition Action An international parliamentary campaign for the revision of international conventions. Started by CORA in July of 1996 Global Coalition for an Alternative to the Drug War CORA adheres to the Global Coalition for an Alternative to the Drug War, an international net involving over 70 organizations that work for a reform of laws on drugs. The CORA congress will take place contemporarily with the -Global Days Against the Drug War, 5-10 June 1998+ during which demonstrations will occur in over 40 cities around the world. The aim is to exsert pressure on Governments meeting in New York for the Special Session of the General Assembly of the United Nations, in which International Conventions on Drugs will be discussed. *** CORA -COORDINATION RADICALE ANTIPROHIBITIONNISTE -ANTIPROHIBITIONIST RADICAL COORDINATION -COORDINAMENTO RADICALE ANTIPROIBIZIONISTA Federated with the Transnational Radical Party NGO with category I consultative status at the UN Emailto:email@example.com http://www.agora.stm.it/coranet Emailto:firstname.lastname@example.org -------------------------------------------------------------------
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