Portland NORML News - Wednesday, June 24, 1998

Crime And Justice - Taken To Task ('Willamette Week'
Notes An Oregon Appeals Court's Decision In State V. Powelson
That The Portland Marijuana Task Force Broke The Law
During A 'Knock And Talk' By Using Undue Coercion
Against A Suspected Marijuana Cultivator In Order To Obtain 'Consent'
For A Warrantless Search)

Willamette Week
822 SW 10th Ave.
Portland, OR 97205
Tel. (503) 243-2122
Fax (503) 243-1115
Letters to the Editor:
Mark Zusman - mzusman@wweek.com
Web: http://www.wweek.com/
Note: Willamette Week welcomes letters to the editor via mail, e-mail or
fax. Letters must be signed by the author and include the author's street
address and phone number for verification. Preference will be given to
letters of 250 words or less.


Taken to Task
June 24, 1998

* Appellate justices uphold a ruling that police officers went too far in a
"knock-and-talk" drug search of a Portland home.

Link to earlier story
The six-person Marijuana Task Force says it
contacts eight to 10 suspects a week and finds
evidence of growing marijuana at least half the

American Agriculture, a Portland business that
sells indoor growing equipment, sued the city in
1996 because the Marijuana Task Force routinely
followed customers home and confronted them
about growing pot.

Since 1995, the Marijuana Task Force has been
one of the Portland Police Bureau's most effective
tools in the War on Drugs. Its officers have
dismantled thousands of marijuana grows, seized
hundreds of thousands in drug-related assets, and
routinely made life difficult for defense lawyers
who have vainly challenged search tactics
("Sniff and Grab," WW, Feb. 11, 1998).

Earlier this month, however, defense lawyers won
a small victory in the state Court of Appeals when
a three-judge panel ruled in favor of a defendant,
Portlander Michael Powelson. Some say the decision
is a signal that the courts may not continue to look so
favorably on task-force techniques.

"I think this is the first step the courts are taking to cut back on what
law enforcement can do," says Michele Kohler, a defense lawyer.

In February 1996, during the Powelson investigation, task force members
performed a by-the-book "knock and talk," a technique where police simply
knock on the door of a suspect and try to talk their way inside without a
search warrant.

It's a technique the task force has been using routinely and without much
public notice for several years. But in January, knock and talk had its
first public scrutiny: The Marijuana Task Force tried to use it on suspected
pot grower Steven Dons before he shot and killed Officer Colleen Waibel and
wounded two others.

In the Powelson case, by contrast, everything went smoothly. Once inside
Powelson's home, police encountered some initial resistance to a search,
which isn't uncommon. But task force members are trained not to take no for
an answer. After 20 to 25 minutes of cajoling and threats (police told
Powelson they'd arrest him if he didn't let them look around), Powelson
backed down. He signed a form consenting to the search and led officers to a
closet where he was growing marijuana. With that, prosecutors thought they
had an open-and-shut case, just like scores of others before.

Powelson was charged with possession, manufacture and delivery of a
controlled substance. Powelson's defense attorney, Jenny Cooke, challenged
the search, arguing that police illegally obtained evidence against her client.

Defense lawyers routinely submit such motions to suppress evidence, and
they're routinely denied. In this case, however, Multnomah County Circuit
Court Judge Linda Bergman agreed with Cooke. Without the evidence, the
Multnomah County district attorney had no case. The DA's office appealed.

On June 10, the state Court of Appeals issued an opinion upholding Bergman's
decision to throw out the case.

"Defendant testified that he did not feel in control of his own home," the
Appeals Court wrote, "that he was under the control of the officers and that
once the officers were inside the home he did not feel free to go or to tell
the officers to leave. Defendant testified that he would not have consented
to a search if he had not been informed that refusing would mean he would go
to jail."

Just as police aren't allowed to beat a confession out of a suspect, they're
not allowed to coerce him into permitting a search, either. The appellate
ruling clearly was a blow to the case against Powelson. The question is
whether it will apply to others.

"I think it's going to affect virtually all of the task-force cases," says
Cooke, whose caseload includes many accused marijuana growers.

Tim Sylwester, who heads the unit that handles criminal appeals at the
attorney general's office, disagrees. He says the officers had "probable
cause" to arrest Powelson even before they entered his house, but they
wanted to get his cooperation in a search. Oregon case law says an officer
is allowed to threaten to do something he's legally permitted to do. So in
this case, according to Sylwester, there was nothing wrong with threatening
to arrest Powelson.

"The Court [of Appeals] did not say that knock and talks are an invalid way
of doing police work," Sylwester says. "I don't think they criticized,
particularly, the way the officer handled this particular one or that the
officer did anything overtly wrong. The problem in this case is mostly the
record that was made."

In other words, Sylwester believes the only problem was with the deputy
district attorney, who didn't establish in the trial court that the officers
had a right to threaten Powelson with arrest.

It's too early to tell whether he's right. In any case, Pat Birmingham, a
Portland defense lawyer, sees the decision as a signal. "This is the first
time that I can remember in this type of case, a so-called knock and talk,
where the court looked at whether this consent issue was free and
voluntary," he says.

Birmingham says that knock and talks are, by definition, coercive. "It's an
intimidating thing to have an officer come [to your house] and not take no
for an answer," he says. "As a practical matter, that's why they do it. Most
trial court judges have been sort of ignoring that issue."

Michelle Burrows, a defense lawyer who handles drug-related forfeiture
cases, agrees. "The whole point of knock and talk is to avoid getting that
warrant, because it has been more susceptible to legal challenge than a
consent search," she says. "They shouldn't take shortcuts and screw with
people's rights."

Oakland Policy Permits 1 1/2 Pounds Of Marijuana ('The Oakland Tribune'
Says The Oakland, California, Public Safety Committee Has Approved
And Sent To The City Council A Plan, Based On Ongoing US Food And Drug
Administration Tests, Which Would Implement Proposition 215 Locally
And Allow Patients With A Doctor's Recommendation For Medical Marijuana
To Cultivate Up To 144 Plants)

Date: Wed, 24 Jun 1998 12:25:30 -0700
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US CA: Oakland Policy Permits 1 1/2 Pounds of Marijuana
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Jerry Sutliff
Source: Oakland Tribune
Contact: triblet@angnewspapers.com
Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jun 1998
Author: Kathleen Kirkwood


OAKLAND - In Oakland, medicinal marijuana users would be able to keep a 1
1/2-pound supply of cannabis on hand - well above a 1-ounce threshold set
by state Attorney General Dan Lungren - in a policy being considered by the
City Council.

If the council approves it in two weeks, the policy would be the most
detailed - and permissive in terms of sheer quantity - in the state when it
comes to implementing Proposition 215, the medicinal marijuana initiative
approved by voters In 1996.

Developed by a committee of police, city legal staff, physicians, patients
and Oakland Cannabis Buyers Club members, the proposed policy would direct
police officers not to target individuals - or confiscate their marijuana -
if it meets the criteria.

The club, the target of a federal lawsuit aimed at closing its doors, has
about 1,700 members and may be the largest such dispensary in the state
because of the recent closure of the San Francisco cannabis club.

The council's four-member public safety committee considered the policy
Tuesday and approved sending it to the full council.

The quantities outlined in the policy are based on ongoing U.S. Food and
Drug Administration tests of medicinal marijuana, which ration users to
about a half-pound per month, or 10 cigarettes per day.

In Oakland, a three-month supply would be allowed, which according to the
proposed guideline amounts to 30 outdoor flowering plants, 48 indoor
flowering plants or 1 1/2 pounds of bulk marijuana.

If all the plants aren't flowering - and thus not harvestable - then users
would be able to keep 96 on hand indoors or 60 outdoors.

No more than 144 plants would be allowed. Users would have to be able to
provide proof of medical use to police. If they do not provide proof within
two days, their marijuana would be forfeited.

That differs dramatically from Lungren's guidelines, which allow only two
plants, or 1 ounce on hand. The attorney general has determined that
amounts to a 30-day supply.

"I'm surprised at the figures they came up with," said Matt Ross, a Lungren
spokesperson. "It's rather staggering."

The two policies differ on the basis for calculating usable marijuana
Lungren's maintains that one pound of marijuana is obtained from a single
plant, while Oakland Cannabis Club representatives say that includes
unusable parts of a plant, like the stem branches, leaves and root ball.

Only a flowering bud is used for medicinal marijuana, and that means one
plant only produces a half-ounce of usable cannabis, said attorney Robert
Raich, who is representing the club in the federal lawsuit.

"They are assuming a plant is the size of a Christmas tree, not some thing
a user would grow in his closet he said. "We are trying to be realistic.

Important - Limits For Growers (A Bay Area Activist
Urges Medical Marijuana Backers To Attend The Oakland City Council Meeting
July 7 To Support The Proposed Implementation Ordinance)

From: "ralph sherrow" (ralphkat@hotmail.com)
To: ralphkat@hotmail.com
Date: Wed, 24 Jun 1998 13:33:52 PDT

Hey Y'all,

Just talked with Jeff Jones. They did not vote on the amount patients
can posses, in Oakland, yesterday. There were some people there from Dan
Lungren's office complaining. As you know Lungren says less than an
ounce & no more than 2 plants (which will yield 6,000 cigarettes each).
Stupid, huh? That works out to 6 lbs. per plant versus less than an
ounce. He picked these figures out arbitrarily & doesn't even know what
he's talking about. Especially when you consider that the government
gives their patients 7 lbs. a year. Be there or be square.

We need to get as many patients there for the vote of the full city
council meeting on July 7th @ 7pm. Remember, that if this passes it will
set a precedence for the rest of the state. It will make it easier for
the rest of us. Remember that the federal government gives their patients
about 9 1/2 ounces per month or about 7 lbs per year & they don't have
to worry about growing it themselves & dealing with all the problems one
encounters when growing their own. Growers need an unlimited supply of
plants to ensure there is enough at harvest & to compensate for any
shortfalls. Let's not let them set limits that aren't reasonable.
Reasonable is NO LIMITS.

The Oakland CBC has made a tentative agreement with the Oakland police
narcotics division working group. The agreement is for patients who grow
to be able to grow indoors 48 plants in the budding stage, 96 plants in
the vegetative stage & 1 1/2 lbs. of dry marijuana. Patients will be
allowed to grow this amount every 3 months. For outdoor growing they
will be allowed 30 plants in the budding stage & 60 in the vegetative
stage & 1 1/2 lbs. of dry marijuana. This is a goodly amount & makes it
pretty safe that you won't run out or run short before your next
harvest. This takes into account for male plant which could stand for
1/2 the plants & for the underdeveloped plants that won't make it.

We need all the patients we can get, to be present at the meeting &
voting date of July 7th at 7pm to speak your piece & have a say in this
most important of all meetings. If you don't make any other meetings for
the rest of your life, MAKE THIS ONE.

For more information call the Oakland CBC 510-832-5346 11am to 7pm or
the info center 510-733-5414 10am to 10pm.


Eviction Drug Ruse Shot Down By Judge ('The Oakland Tribune'
Says US District Judge Charles R. Breyer Has Banned The Oakland Housing
Authority From Evicting Tenants For Illegal Drug Activity Happening Outside
Their Homes, Ruling In Favor Of The First Challenge To The 'One Strike,
You're Out' Policy Established By The Clinton Administration Two Years Ago)

Date: Thu, 25 Jun 1998 11:23:53 -0700
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US CA: Eviction Drug Ruse Shot Down by Judge
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Gerald Sutliff (gsutliff@dnai.com)
Source: Oakland Tribune
Contact: triblet@angnewspapers.com
Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jun 1998
Author: Ben Chamy


Oakland housing policy called "unreasonable"

OAKLAND A judge has temporarily set aside portions of a federal
"one-strike policy" that allows landlords of government-subsidized homes to
evict tenants if their family or friends are suspected of drug activity.
For more than two years, agencies such as the Oakland Housing Authority
have been evicting tenants if they or their visitors are arrested on drug

The arrest does not have to take place inside the tenant's home and tenants
can be evicted even if the charges are dropped or the person is acquitted.

Berkeley and Oakland tenant rights advocates sued the Oakland Housing
Authority In U.S. District Court on behalf of four tenants who were about
to be evicted under the policy.

This week, in a long-awaited opinion U.S. District Judge Charles R. Breyer
banned the housing authority from using the policy to evict tenants if the
drug activity happens outside their homes.

The judge wrote "that there is a serious question" about evicting "innocent
tenants for drug-related criminal activity. He described such evictions as

The judge pointed out that the policy, meant to curb drug use, may be

Evicting the tenant will not reduce drug-related criminal activity. since
the tenant has not engaged in any such activity or knowingly allowed such
activity to occur." he wrote.

To let the policy stand would "at least conceal criminal drug-activity by
ensuring that tenants who learn of such activity by their household members
or guests will not report the activity."

Anne Omura of the Oakland-based Eviction Defense Center said the decision
"is a tremendous victory." She said It is the first challenge to the
policy, set by the Clinton administration two years ago.

Omura and attorney Ira Jacobowitz drafted the lawsuit before Breyer.

"The judge agreed with us that it is fundamentally unfair to evict tenants
for actions of others Jacobowiiz said.

Portions upheld

But Breyer let stand the balance of the policy, which allows the housing
authority to evict someone if drug use takes place within the household.

OHA attorney Gary Lafayette was out of town Tuesday and could not be
reached for comment.

Breyer's ruling is in effect until September, when the housing authority
and. tenants square off again in court The question then is whether to make
the temporary injunction a permanent one.

Eviction avoided

The ruling prevented the pending eviction of four OHA tenants, including
Herman Walker, 75, whose care-giver was found with four drug pipes. If
evicted, Walker will have to wait 10 years to get another apartment.

"We do not condone protecting drug dealers. But kicking a 75-year~old
disabled person out of their home is not going to stop the drug problem,"
Jacobowitz said.

Well-Funded Cabal Opposes Initiatives That Would Provide Drugs To The Dying
(A Letter To The Editor Of 'The Rocky Mountain News' In Denver Adds Details
To The Newspaper's Story About What Happened To Colorado's 1979
Medical Marijuana Law, Showing The Main Impediment To Medical Marijuana
Is 'A Well-Funded Cabal Of District Attorneys And Cops, Which Lives Off
Busting Marijuana Smokers')

Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 10:17:22 -0700
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US CO: PUB LTE: Well-Funded Cabal Opposes
Initiatives That Would Provide Drugs to the Dying
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: GDaurer@aol.com
Source: Rocky Mountain News (CO)
Contact: letters@denver-rmn.com
Website: http://insidedenver.com/news/
Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jun 1998


What a recent article on Colorado's abandoned medical marijuana law
("Medicinal use of pot legal in Colorado until 1995") failed to mention

1. After her bill to delete "obsolete" language from state law had been
introduced in committee by the General Assembly in 1995, Sen. Sally Hopper
sneakily added Colorado's long-standing medical marijuana law to the list.
This action came shortly after two towns in Hopper's district, Breckenridge
and Frisco, passed legislation that called on the state to uphold the law
and begin distributing medical marijuana to the ill. Due to Hopper's smoke
screen, affected citizens did not discover from the press that the state's
marijuana law would be stricken until it was too late.

2. In addition, the chancellor of the University of Colorado Health
Sciences Center asked legislators to delete the law from the books after a
Denver cancer survivor filed a lawsuit against the center to end its
negligence and to start providing medical marijuana to the ill, as
specified by the law.

3. No public record has been maintained by the Health Sciences Center
concerning the results of its studies in the early '80s on how efficacious
smoked cannabis proved to be for patients. As soon as the less effective
and more lucrative pharmaceutical drug Marinol (synthetic THC) became
available, research on smoked marijuana was halted.

Today, a well-funded cabal of district attorneys and cops, which lives off
busting marijuana smokers, opposes two initiatives that would once again
exclude dying people from its net. Ex-legislator and anti-medical marijuana
lobbyist Chris Paulson hypocritically denies patients the right to an
effective medicine he supported legislatively in 1979.

Gregory Daurer Denver, CO

1,000 More Face Out-Of-State Prison ('The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel'
Says Wisconsin Prisons Are Filled To More Than 30 Percent Over Capacity,
So Lawmakers Tuesday Authorized Sending 1,000 More Convicts Elsewhere,
Raising The Out-Of-State Total To 3,200)

Date: Wed, 24 Jun 1998 19:06:15 -0400
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US WI: 1,000 More Face Out-Of-State Prison
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: compassion23@geocities.com (Frank S. World)
Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jun 1998
Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (WI)
Contact: jsedit@onwis.com
Fax: (414) 224-8280
Website: http://www.jsonline.com/
Author: Richard P. Jones of the Journal Sentinel staff


Legislators raise total to 3,200 as Wisconsin prisons are brimming

Madison -- With no room to spare in Wisconsin's crowded prison system,
lawmakers Tuesday gave Corrections Secretary Michael Sullivan authority to
send 1,000 more convicts to prisons in other states.

The Joint Finance Committee approved the transfer of 600 inmates to private
prisons run by the Corrections Corporation of America in Oklahoma and Tennessee.

Four hundred other prisoners will be sent out of state as soon as the
Department of Corrections finds cells to rent, negotiates a contract and
submits it to the committee co-chairmen for approval.

Those 400 inmates could include women, a first for Wisconsin. The agency
wanted to send 200 women to a state prison in Virginia, but Sullivan said
that facility fell short of Wisconsin standards for cleanliness and security.

On an 11-3 vote, the committee approved spending $30 million in the next
year on all contract beds, including 2,785 already approved by the
Legislature and the 1,000 additional transfers. Of that total, 585 prisoners
will be housed in county jails in Wisconsin and 3,200 will be sent out of state.

Sullivan sought authority to ship 2,320 more prisoners out of state, but he
said the committee's approval of 1,000 transfers would give him some
breathing room at least until January.

Before the vote, Sullivan painted a grim picture for committee members.
Wisconsin's inmate population now totals 16,282, more than 30% over the
prison system's operating capacity. The system has no room to spare, he said.

Currently, 1,395 state prisoners are housed out of state, or 8.6% of the total.

"The Department of Corrections in Wisconsin is out of beds," Sullivan said.
He said officials found space for 250 bunks, but the system can hold no more.

"We're triple-celling in some places, including female facilities," he said.
"Even if we put in more beds, we don't have the resources to safely
supervise people in the system."

Sullivan said 500 guard positions are vacant because the department has had
trouble recruiting and hiring correctional officers.

"The Wisconsin prison system is maxed out," he told the committee.

The system has an operating capacity of 12,266, which includes beds under
contract with Wisconsin counties, Texas county jails, federal prisons and a
Corrections Corporation of America prison in Tennessee.

Two years ago, the state began sending prisoners to county jails in Texas
and now has 700 Wisconsin convicts in that state.

The action taken Tuesday also will allow the department for the first time
to send prisoners to Oklahoma. As many as 300 can be shipped to a CCA prison
in Sayre, Okla., which is about 120 miles west of Oklahoma City.

"The buses will be ready to roll next Monday," Sullivan said after the
committee vote.

Although he had asked the committee to let him send 2,320 more prisoners out
of state, Sullivan said he was "extremely pleased" with Tuesday's vote.

After the vote, Sullivan said the out-of-state contracts are a good
investment for the state.

"No one can say with absolute certainty what the future holds," he said.

If the inmate population ultimately levels off or even declines, he said,
the state will have saved money by renting cells out of state instead of
building new prisons in Wisconsin.

A substantial decrease in paroles has exacerbated prison crowding. According
to a Legislative Fiscal Bureau analysis, the number of early releases from
prison has decreased from an average of 275 per month in January 1996 to 83
in April.

With the decline in paroles, the inmate population has shown a net increase
of 2% a month, and at that rate, according to the fiscal bureau, the
population will approach 18,400 by January and 20,800 this time next year.

The female inmate population has been increasing faster than the number of
male prisoners. Since 1996, the female inmate population has increased from
508 to 896, up 76%, according to the fiscal bureau.

In an attempt to find out-of-state cells for women inmates, Sullivan said,
his agency will see whether Virginia officials could improve conditions of
their prison. He also said county jails in New Mexico and Mississippi were
under consideration.

In a related matter Tuesday, the committee voted, 8-6, to approve a plan by
Rep. Spencer Coggs (D-Milwaukee) to let the Corrections Department hire four
people to monitor conditions in jails and prisons rented in other states.

Sen. Timothy Weeden (R-Beloit), committee co-chairman, had opposed the plan,
saying the $325,700 item would mean less money for inmate transfers.
Besides, he said, the department already has four positions, which are
vacant, to deal with out-of-state contracts.

However, Sullivan said the vacant positions, just authorized in the budget
adjustment bill, are needed to coordinate transfers at Waupun. He said the
department needed four more people to visit out-of-state prisons where
Wisconsin inmates are held.

Rep. Dean Kaufert (R-Neenah) joined Coggs in urging funding for monitors.

"We made the decision to send these inmates to other facilities out of
state," Kaufert said. "We have a responsibility to maintain some sort of

Sullivan, who announced he will retire at the end of this year, drew praise
from two members for the difficult job of running the Corrections Department.

However, Rep. Sheila Harsdorf (R-River Falls) said she was disturbed by
agency's frequent requests for emergency funding.

"While we need to make some tough decisions today, we also have to look long
term at solutions so that we don't continually dig ourselves deeper and
deeper into this hole," she said.

Sen. Margaret Farrow (R-Elm Grove) said some strategic planning was in order
but that lawmakers, not Sullivan, were more to blame in part for some of the
problems the department faces because of anti-crime measures enacted in
recent sessions.

Still, at Harsdorf's urging, the committee directed Sullivan to try to
develop a strategic plan aimed at making the best use of prison beds.

No Surprise DARE's Falling Out Of Favor (Staff Editorial
In 'The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel' Responds To The Recent Call
To Stop Funding DARE In The Shorewood, Wisconsin, School District)

Date: Wed, 24 Jun 1998 12:15:14 -0700
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US WI: Editorial: No Surprise Dare's Falling Out of Favor
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: compassion23@geocities.com (Frank S. World)
Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (WI)
Contact: jsedit@onwis.com
Fax: (414) 224-8280
Website: http://www.jsonline.com/
Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jun 1998


DARE seems such a nifty program. It brings cops into classrooms to rap with
kids about the ills of drugs. It's popular among schools around the state
and the nation.

There's just one problem: It doesn't work. And that's too bad.

A Shorewood School Board committee is urging that district to scrap DARE
(Drug Abuse Resistance Education) and to put in its stead a more promising
anti-drug program -- a reasonable decision. After all, study after study
shows that DARE fails to curtail drug use.

In fact, horribly, it may even boomerang, encouraging some suburban kids to
do dope, recent research suggests.

A few other area school districts are thinking about following Shorewood's
lead, though Waukesha County District Attorney Paul Bucher, as well as many
law officers, stand solidly behind DARE.

The program is certainly a laudable effort. There's some faint evidence
that it may work if it's supported by other programs in later grades; DARE
targets fifth, sixth and seventh grades.

But to meet demands for accountability, schools generally are becoming more
results-oriented -- and rightly so. A curriculum not shown to work should
be discarded. To deserve to survive, DARE must prove its worth.

The program does have some visible value. It builds rapport between police
officers and children. But other, better roads may reach that destination.

Marijuana Farm Found At Fraternity ('Reuters' Says A Summer Resident
At Beta Theta Pi Fraternity At Rutgers University In New Jersey Got Popped
With 30 Plants Discovered In The Attic By Firefighters During A Routine Check
After A Small Fire Friday)

Date: Wed, 24 Jun 1998 21:15:52 -0400
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US NJ: Wire: Marijuana Farm Found At Fraternity
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Patrick Henry
Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jun 1998
Source: Reuters


(NEW BRUNSWICK) -- A Rutgers University fraternity has been shut down
because firefighters discovered a marijuana farm in the attic. The national
organization of Beta Theta Pi suspended the chapter Monday. A Rutgers dean
says that fraternity members do NOT face criminal charges because a resident
who is home for the summer has admitted responsibility for the plants.

Firefighters discovered 30 marijuana plants along with grow lights, a
humidifier and other equipment during a routine check of the building after
a small fire Friday. Rutgers police seized everything.

Amish Drug Bust ('The Associated Press' Says Two Amish Men
Were Indicted Tuesday On Charges Of Buying Cocaine From The Pagans
Motorcycle Gang And Distributing It At Youth Hoedowns
Between 1993 And 1997 In Lancaster County, Pennsylvania)

From: "sburbank" (sburbank@orednet.org)
To: Phil Smith (pdxnorml@pdxnorml.org)
Subject: Fw: Amish Drug Bust
Date: Wed, 24 Jun 1998 07:53:41 -0700


Subject: ARO: Amish Drug Bust
Date: Wednesday, June 24, 1998 7:25 AM

The Fox News producer just emailed me an incredible story that will kick
off the 11:30 show this morning. I have copied it below and can only say
that it goes to show that no one is immune from the lure.

The Fox show will indeed include CADCA's Nelson Cooney, a reporter, and
myself to discuss whether we are winning the war. I can only hope to keep
in mind all the good things written over the last couple weeks. Cooney is
definitely a legalization baiter.

Here's the AP story:


PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Mention the Pagans motorcycle gang and
police talk lawlessness. Mention the Amish and you hear about
conservative religious values, horse-drawn buggies, maybe the movie
"Witness." If prosecutors are right, the two found common ground
in cocaine trafficking.

Two Amish men were indicted Tuesday on charges of buying drugs
from the motorcycle gang and distributing them at dances in their
Lancaster County communities.

"Bikes and buggies, it's a rather strange combination," said
Pennsylvania State Police Major Robert Werts. "Our drug
investigations are taking us to places where years ago we didn't
think we had a problem."

Abner Stoltzfus, 24, and Abner King Stoltzfus, 23, who are both
from Gap but are not related, were indicted in federal court with
distributing cocaine to members of Amish youth groups. An
arraignment was scheduled for July 3.

John Pyfer, who is representing Abner Stoltzfus, said the Amish
are not immune to the pressures of modern society.

"People think the Amish are sheltered from the outside world,
but the temptations are there," he said. "My client's parents are
extremely conservative -- horse and buggy the whole bit. They're
having a hard time understanding this."

Eight Chester County members of the Pagans gang sold the drugs
to the Amish men, who then distributed the drugs to members of the
youth groups known as the Crickets, the Antiques and the Pilgrims
at hoedowns, or dances, between 1993 and 1997, according to the

Three gang members were arraigned Tuesday. Emory Edward Reed,
Douglas Hersch and Dwayne Blank, all of Lancaster County, were
charged with distributing multiple kilos of cocaine and
methamphetamines totaling about $1 million over a five-year period.

Court dates have not yet been set for the other five Pagan

At a press conference Tuesday, federal authorities painted a
picture of the motorcycle gang world, characterized by drugs and
reckless behavior, colliding with the serene, traditional lifestyle
of the Pennsylvania Amish.

"As far as I know we have never charged any (Amish) with drug
crimes," said assistant states attorney Joseph Dominguez. An
investigation into the drug trade in Chester and Lancaster counties
is ongoing, he said.

The charges surprised even veteran federal agents.

"It's something in my 26 years in the FBI I've never
encountered before," special agent Robert Conforti said.

Lancaster County is home to some 20,000 Old Order Amish, the
most conservative Anabaptist sect. The Amish eschew automobiles,
electricity, computers, fancy clothes and most other modern

At the time of their indictment, Abner King Stoltzfus and Abner
Stoltzfus were participating in what is known as a "timeout," a
period where young Amish men and women between the ages of 16 and
24 are allowed to explore the outside world and decide whether to
join the church, their attorneys said. Both men intended to join,
they said.

If convicted the defendants face a minimum of five years
supervised release and a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

(Copyright 1998 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
APTV-06-24-98 0126EDT


Creating reasoned and compassionate policies

4455 Connecticut Ave. NW
Suite B-500
Washington, DC 20008-2328
(202) 537-5005 * fax: (202) 537-3007

Two Amish Men Accused Of Cocaine Deals With Motorcycle Gang
('Washington Post' Version)

Date: Wed, 24 Jun 1998 12:27:19 -0700
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US PA: Two Amish Men Accused of
Cocaine Deals with Motorcycle Gang
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: DrugSense
Source: Washington Post
Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm
Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/
Pubdate: Wed, 24 June 1998
Author: Hanna Rosin, Washington Post Staff Writer


Federal prosecutors in Pennsylvania yesterday accused two Amish men of
buying cocaine from a gang called the Pagan Motorcycle Club and
distributing the drug to other young members of the religious group at
parties known as "hoedowns."

"We've seen plenty of underage drinking cases but a drug case is unheard
of" among the Amish, said John Pyfer, who is representing Abner Stoltzfus,
24. The other defendant is Abner King Stoltzfus, 23, who is no relation.

The case in Lancaster County underscores the vulnerability of the Amish,
who have seen suburban development and tourism encroach on their once
secluded lives. The suburbanites and the gawkers have made it difficult for
the Amish to close their eyes to what they consider the corrupting
influences of modernity. Members of the sect do not have electricity or
plumbing in their homes, and still make their way around the county in
horse-drawn buggies. The two men accused belong to the most conservative
Amish sect, the Old Order Amish.

Most work as farmers or craftsmen, and do not stray far from their homes.
Abner Stoltzfus worked as a roofer, Pyfer said, and met Pagan members on
his work trips outside Lancaster.

The two men were indicted yesterday on charges of participating in a
conspiracy to distribute more than $1 million worth of cocaine and
methamphetamine. Federal prosecutors placed most of the blame on eight
members of the motorcycle gang, who were described as reckless and violent.
Emory Edward Reed, president of the Pagans' Chester County chapter, broke
one of the defendant's legs with an ax handle when he refused an order, and
knocked out the other defendant's teeth when he failed to pay on time.

While members of the biker gang were known as habitual lawbreakers, no one
from the Amish had ever been involved in such serious criminal activity,
attorneys said. The two Amish men allegedly bought the drugs from gang
members between 1992 and 1997 and distributed them at parties of youth
groups known as the Antiques, the Crickets and the Pilgrims. A juvenile
identified only as CS also participated in the conspiracy, according to
prosecutors, but was not charged in the indictment.

Pyfer said "it was pretty clear" his client had been addicted to cocaine,
although he no longer is. No date has been set for the arraignment, but
Pyfer said his client would plead not guilty.

During the five years the two men were allegedly distributing cocaine, they
were participating in an Amish rite of passage translated loosely in
English as "sowing your wild oats," said Pyfer. Amish men between the ages
of 16 and 24 take a long break from the rigid rules of the community to
decide if they want to opt out. During the break, the men drink and drive
"bright, gaudy cars," said Pyfer, while "their parents are looking the
other way." Taking drugs is not an accepted part of that rite, however.

Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company

Two Dead As Drug Bust Goes Bad ('Reuters' Says A Group Of Undercover Police
In Homestead, Florida, Were Trying To Sell Cocaine To Several Suspected
Dealers At A Busy Apartment Complex When The Alleged Dealers
Tried To Rip Them Off, Leading To A Gun Battle In Which Five People
Were Shot, Including Two Dead Suspects, One Wounded Cop
Plus Collateral Casualties)

Date: Sun, 28 Jun 1998 02:41:33 -0400
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US FL: Wire: Two Dead As Drug Bust Goes Bad
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Patrick Henry (resist_tyranny@hotmail.com)
Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jun 1998
Source: Reuters


(HOMESTEAD) -- A gun battle during a botched drug bust in Homestead has left
five people shot... including a Homestead police officer. Two suspected drug
dealers were killed, and three others were injured in the incident. The
officer was grazed in the neck by a bullet but is expected to recover. A
group of undercover Homestead police detectives were trying to sell a small
amount of cocaine to several suspected dealers during the middle of the day
at a busy apartment complex. Cops say the dealers tried to rip them off...
one thing led to another... and shots were fired.

Meanwhile, members of the community are questioning why a drug bust was
planned in such a populated area.

Prohibition Is Immoral (Letters To The Editor Of 'The Wall Street Journal'
From Milton Friedman And Six Others Who Responded To The Newspaper's
'500 Drug Geniuses' Diatribe)

Date: Wed, 24 Jun 1998 18:58:13 -0400
To: DrugSense News Service 
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US GE: 7 PUB LTE in WSJ! Prohibition Is Immoral
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Mark Greer http://www.DrugSense.org/
Source: The Wall Street Journal
Contact: letter.editor@edit.wsj.com
Website: http://www.wsj.com/
Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jun 1998
Note: Our newshawk and DrugSense/MAP Executive Director writes: "Below are
7 LTEs published in response to the '500 Geniuses' lead editorial in The
Wall Street Journal which may be read at http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/
v98.n439.a04.html. The WSJ Circulation - 2 Million Readers! 26 column inches!
7 Letters! Ad Value a whopping $31,200!" Thank You to the many who responded
to the DrugSense Focus Alert or other internet efforts by sending LTEs to the


It is one thing for The Wall Street Journal editorial page to support the
mislabeled "war on drugs" ("500 Drug Geniuses," Review & Outlook, June 10);
it is quite another for you to misrepresent the views of those of us who
believe that the "war on drugs is now causing more harm than drug abuse
itself." I am, in your words, a "libertarian economist." Yet I do not
"believe in backward [i.e., positively] sloping demand curves." I challenge
you to name one libertarian economist who does.

You suggest that "these people" state "publicly whether they themselves use
any of these drugs recreationally." As for myself, I have not done so
during the past 85-plus years. But I make no guarantees for the future.

More seriously, do you really believe that no one should publicly support a
policy change from which he or she would benefit? Or at least without
stating explicitly that he or she would? On the stricter standard, I doubt
that the Journal could easily fill its editorial page. And it certainly has
not adhered to an explicit statement of interest. Sauce for the goose but
not the gander?

Finally, I have long believed that prohibition, whether of liquor,
cigarettes or drugs, is an immoral policy. Immoral premises produce the
immoral results that you list: "political corruption, economic distortion,
crime, AIDS and other social ills." If it is morally acceptable for the
government to tell me what I may ingest, surely it is also morally
acceptable for the government to tell the Journal what it may print.

I am dismayed that my favorite editorial page should be so internally

Milton Friedman
Stanford, Calif.


Do you really believe that all drug use constitutes abuse, and that the
government should make such personal decisions for us? Do you advocate
prohibiting alcohol again, since it kills more than 40,000 people a year,
and is more addictive than heroin, crack, cocaine, caffeine, PCP,
marijuana, Ecstasy [MDMA], psilocybin mushrooms, LSD and mescaline? Do you
advocate the illegalization of nicotine, which kills more than 400,000
Americans a year and is more addictive than all of the aforementioned
drugs? Even though more prohibition would bring more crime, as did alcohol
prohibition, and as does the current drug prohibition?

Every troubled individual is worth saving, and medical care should always
be available. But it is not worth destroying our society in a futile effort
to save people from themselves.

Lynn Carol
San Diego


For you to place drug use in the same category as pedophilia and child
prostitution is simply dishonest. These are clearly crimes, with
non-consenting (by virtue of their age) victims. Drug use by consenting
adults does not constitute a crime, unless the person or property of a
non-consenting other is harmed as a result, in which case the user should
be held accountable for that harm. Drinking of the legal drug alcohol even
to the point of intoxication is not a crime. Drinking and driving is a
crime because it directly endangers others through impaired ability to
operate a motor car amongst other drivers.

You also suggest that "the future of the debate would profit if all of
these people stated publicly whether they themselves use any of these drugs
recreationally." I fail to see either the relevance of this, or what
business it is of anyone else. These are all highly intelligent, successful
people, and if in fact some of them had ever used drugs, then all this
would prove is that drug users aren't necessarily the burned out junkies
that America's 70-year war on drugs propaganda machine has made them out to

Mark O'Kelley
Tucson, Ariz.


You described us (for I was one of the signatories) as naive "geniuses" who
were issuing pabulum to the world; claimed that we were all dupes of George
Soros, and suggested that the signatories might be drug users. The 500
"eminences" you derided included present and former prime ministers,
cabinet ministers, ministers of justice, U.S. attorneys general, and a
secretary of state; university presidents and professors; innumerable
practitioners and professors of medicine and psychiatry; mayors, police
commissioners, clergymen, bishops, businessmen, journalists,
criminologists, Nobel laureates, and many more. I am amazed that you
consider so many of the leaders of our society to be so foolish as to have
a view which, a day after its publication, you were sensible enough to
dismiss out of hand. Does that not frighten you?

Their credentials should, at the very least, cause you to re-think your own
views and to support free expression and a commitment to research
unfettered by "Just Say No" slogans and practices that have up to now put
millions of people into jail, fed the crime syndicates, subverted the
justice system, disturbed our foreign relations, and cost our country
billions of dollars without--as far as anyone can tell--making any
contribution to the problems generated either by drugs or by the "war on

Henry G. Jarecki, M.D.
New York


The utter futility of the war on drugs should be apparent to anyone willing
to honestly evaluate its history. In simple economic terms, both the supply
of and demand for illicit drugs have increased since the start of the drug
war, despite the billions of dollars and thousands of lives wasted in its
name so far. To think that an escalation of the war on drugs will somehow
eliminate drug abuse and addiction is to miss the obvious lesson of the
drug war: It is unwinnable.

W. Luke Vicens
North Andover, Mass.


It is mind-boggling that you have the unmitigated gall to dismiss the
opinions of 500 acknowledged leaders such as Walter Cronkite, George
Shultz, and former U.N. Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar.

How can any rational thinker analyze our drug policy and fail to conclude
that it is a monumental failure? We have more people in prison than any
industrialized nation. We've spent hundreds of billions of dollars on the
drug war. We've destroyed families and lives and undermined Constitutional
freedoms. We've made inner city children, who should have been young
business men, into drug dealers. And what do we have to show for all this
effort? Any child or adult with a few dollars in his pocket can buy any
illicit drug in existence anywhere in the country.

Mark Greer
Porterville, Calif.


I'd be surprised if your editorial geniuses don't enjoy a cigar and a
scotch now and then. The same kind of hysterical thinking that illuminated
your editorial has provided the rationale for the billion-dollar bonfire
called the "war on drugs" and the greatest erosion of Americans' personal
liberties in generations. Next time you light up or take a sip, better
check out the window for the shock troops of the nanny state poised to save
you from the hell of tobacco and alcohol.

It can't happen here? Yeah, right.

Jack Williamson
San Francisco

House Approves Measure To Aid Drug-Free Business (An 'Associated Press' Item
In The Everett, Washington, 'Herald' Says The US House Of Representatives
Voted 402 To 9 Tuesday In Favor Of Republican-Sponsored Legislation
That Would Help Small Businesses Pay For Drug Testing Their Employees)

Date: Wed, 24 Jun 1998 12:21:47 -0700
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US: 'House Approves Measure to Aid Drug-Free Business'
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: John Smith
Source: Herald, The (WA)
Contact: letters@heraldnet.com
Website: http://www.heraldnet.com/
Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jun 1998
Author: Associated Press
Editor note: The above title is not consistent with the Herald's publication.

Small businesses would get financial incentives and technical aid to adopt
drug-free workplace programs under legislation approved by the House

The measure, approved 402-9, is part of a package of anti-drug bills the
Republican leadership has made a top priority over the past month.
Sponsored by Rep. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, the bill encourages states to
provide financial benefits to small businesses that meet minimum standards
for drug-free workplaces.

DrugSense Weekly, Number 52 (Summary Of Drug Policy News For Activists)

Date: Wed, 24 Jun 1998 11:15:05 -0700
To: mgreer@mapinc.org
From: Mark Greer (MGreer@mapinc.org)
Subject: DrugSense Weekly, June 24,1998 No. 52



The DrugSense Weekly is one year old today!


DrugSense Weekly, June 24,1998 No. 52
A DrugSense publication




* Feature Article

McCaffrey Warns Panel of Effort to Legalize Drugs

Weekly News In Review

	UN Aftermath-

LTEs 500 Drug Genuises

Top Anti-Drug Official Attacks Critics

Just Think About Drugs; Then Say 'No' To US Policy

	Drug War Policy-

No Quick Solutions To Drug Abuse

Congress Challenges NBA'S Policies On Drugs

Time - Crank


Editorial - Tobacco bill excesses

Student Smokers Face Suspension

S.F. Teens Trying High-Nicotine 'Bidi' Cigarettes

Editorial - Smoke Gets in Their Ayes


Simi Police Return Marijuana Plants To Patient

Medical Company Growing Cannabis

Group Petitions For Vote On Medical Use Of Marijuana

Relax marijuana laws - federal study

	International News-

Kyrgyzstan - New Treasure Along Ancient Silk Road

Colombia - Colombia To Test Coca Herbicide

Canada - Hemp Farmers Still Await Go-Ahead From Ottawa

* Hot Off The 'Net

Nightline now Online

Register To Vote On-Line!

* DrugSense Tip Of The Week

Mike Gray Interview with Art Bell On-Line

* Quote of the Week

Abraham Lincoln



New York Times Letters to the Editor Information Follows. Please
consider writing to the times regarding this article.

Drug Policy Official Warns Panel of Effort to Legalize Drugs


Thursday, June 18, 1998 Page A29

WASHINGTON, June 17 -- The White House's top drug policy official today
accused critics of the nation's zero-tolerance drug laws of pursuing an
agenda to legalize drugs from marijuana to heroin and cocaine.

In written testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, the
official, Gen. Barry R. McCaffrey, asserted, "There is a carefully
camouflaged, exorbitantly funded, well-heeled elitist group whose
ultimate goal is to legalize drug use in the United States."

While General McCaffrey named no names, he was clearly referring to a
coalition of advocacy groups that argues that the global war on drugs
has cost society more than drug abuse itself. Some of those advocates
attracted attention last week with an open letter to the United Nations
Secretary General as the General Assembly opened a three-day special
session on drugs.

The letter -- whose 500 signers included the former Secretary General
Javier Perez de Cuellar, former Secretary of State George P. Shultz and
two former Senators, Alan Cranston and Claiborne Pell -- argued that by
focusing on punishing drug users, the United States and other countries
had helped create a worldwide criminal black market that wrecked
national economies and democratic governments.

The letter's signers also included George Soros, the billionaire
investor and philanthropist, who has spent as much as $20 million
supporting research and advocacy groups working to change Americans'
views on how to deal with drug use. Mr. Soros said in an interview last
week that he hoped that it would foster an open discussion of the issue.

But General McCaffrey, the Clinton Administration's director of
national drug policy, said the critics were disguising their true
purpose because Americans overwhelmingly opposed legalizing drugs.

"Through a slick misinformation campaign," he said, "these individuals
perpetuate a fraud on the American people, a fraud so devious that even
some of the nation's most respectable newspapers and sophisticated
media are capable of echoing their falsehoods."

His assertion prompted the Judiciary Committee's ranking Democrat,
Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware, to propose hearings into the
issue of legalizing drugs.

"Let's expose it for the fraud that it is," Senator Biden said.

Mr. Soros could not be reached today because he was traveling in
Sweden. But one of the most prominent advocates of less punitive
approaches to drug use, Ethan Nadelmann, director of the Lindesmith
Center, a drug policy institute in New York supported by Mr. Soros,
called the general's criticism "an attempt to smear what's a very
responsible approach to dealing with drug abuse in our society."

At the core of the disagreement is the concept of harm reduction, which
to advocates like Mr. Nadelmann, means finding ways short of abstinence
to reduce the harm that drug abusers cause themselves and society.
Needle exchange, in which addicts are given clean needles to try to
stem the spread of AIDS, is a prominent example.

Kevin Zeese, president of Common Sense for Drug Policy, a group in
Falls Church, Va., that also wants drug laws changed, said, "The reason
why there is an upsurge of people advocating reform is because the
current policy is not making for a safer or healthier society,"

But General McCaffrey called harm reduction "a hijacked concept that
has become a euphemism for drug legalization."

"It's become a cover story for people who would lower the barriers to
drug use," he said.

Mr. Nadelmann responded, "The majority of harm reduction advocates
oppose drug legalization, and that includes George Soros."

Until today, General McCaffrey had ignored the advocacy groups'
lobbying, and so his sharp attack was a change in strategy.

After testifying, he said he was suggesting a debate about
legalization, not a witch hunt.

"It's a legitimate subject of debate in our society if you do it
openly," said General McCaffrey, who is retired from the Army.

He predicted that the notion would be "rejected resoundingly" once
Americans discovered what was involved.

Mr. Nadelmann said: "I would welcome the opportunity to debate him
anytime or anyplace. His trying to equate all forms of harm reduction
with a free market approach to drug legalization is both false and

But Mark A. R. Kleiman, a professor of public policy at the University
of California at Los Angeles who follows drug issues, expressed concern
that such a debate would detract from the more crucial task of finding
ways to make the current anti-drug strategies work more effectively.


Letters must include the writer's name, address and telephone number.
Those selected my be shortened for space reasons (ie. the shorter the

Fax letters to 212-556-3622 or send by email to letters@nytimes.com

or by regular mail to

Letters to the Editor
The New York Times
229 West 43rd Street
New York, NY 10036


Ty Trippet
Director of Communications
The Lindesmith Center
New York,
NY 10019




Preparing this COMMENTS section begins with a consideration of all the
articles archived by MAP from the preceding Monday through Sunday;
then I try to make sense of the "Big Picture " and select, arrange and
excerpt articles to portray it. For the past two weeks, the plethora
of drug news and opinion provoked by the UN session has created some
welcome editing problems: which of the articles to select and how to
classify them?

The following 16 articles were selected from the 248 items archived
during the week of June 15 thru June 21.


UN Aftermath



Through shrewd advance planning, the reform movement parleyed a
pro-forma UN Special Session into a publicity bonanza which not only
proclaimed the existence of an organized opposition to conventional
drug policy, but also uncovered a degree of media support which must
have come as a nasty shock to drug warriors everywhere.

Denunciations of the open letter to Kofi Annan only provoked further
skepticism from readers of the Wall Street Journal- no letters
approving the Journal position were printed, leading one to wonder:
did they receive any?

Worried warriors went so far as to consider Senate hearings to vilify
reform; whether they will actually be held remains uncertain.

So many well-written calls to either abandon the drug war or seriously
reconsider present policy were published that it's been a problem to
select which to cite. The Boston Globe editorial receives the nod as
the most recent and one of the best reasoned.


"Your recommendations on what to do about the drug war on your
editorial ( "500 Drug Geniuses") are about as idiotic and pointless as
putting on suntan lotion in hell."	

Ghamal de la Guardia



In your editorial I was shocked to see the following statement.

"an international group of eminences urged the world to cede victory to
the drugs' allure and concentrate its money and attention on making the
addicts more comfortable."

"What ever led the staff of The Wall Street Journal to descend into
such childish petulance is beyond me."	

Arthur Sobey
Norfolk, Nev.


"If you change the phrase "War on Drugs" to "War on Poverty", you're
left with the same arguments supporting a failed status quo that you
rail against the other four days of the week. Asking the left to set
aside their ideology in the face of years worth of demonstrably
unsuccessful policy, when you are unwilling to do the same, is the
definition of hypocrisy."	

Steven Haskett
Austin, Texas


Your editorial makes me wonder when drug prohibitionists will ever
come to understand the phrase 'consenting adults.'

In a free society, the state leaves consenting adults to do as they
please, as long as they don't harm anyone else.	

Ananda Gupta
Bethesda, Md


"As with abortion, tobacco, alcohol, homosexuality and other lifestyle
issues regarding choice and conscience, the civil society provides
ample area for debate and discussion. And it is in the civil society
that such issues should be resolved, not under the heel of the police
power of government."

David W. Holmes Fairfax, Va.


"Don't forget that if we end the "war on drugs", a huge agency called
the DEA won't have anything to do. Those are good people and we
certainly don't want them out of jobs, breaking into houses and such.
And they set such a good example for other agencies, like the FBI,
BATF, FDA, and a whole alphabet of other suddenly heavily armed
agencies, out to protect Americans by breaking down their doors."	

Rick Berger


Pubdate: Mon, 15 Jun 1998
Source: Wall Street Journal ("Voices" in Online Edition)
Contact: editors@interactive.wsj.com
Website: http://www.wsj.com/
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n461.a08.html



WASHINGTON -- The White House's top drug-policy official accused
critics of the United States' zero-tolerance drug laws Wednesday of
pursuing an agenda to legalize drugs, from marijuana to heroin and

In written testimony before the Senate foreign relations committee,
the official, Gen. Barry McCaffrey, charged, "There is a carefully
camouflaged, exorbitantly funded, well-heeled elitist group whose
ultimate goal is to legalize drug use in the United States."


His assertion prompted the judiciary committee's ranking Democrat,
Sen. Joseph Biden of Delaware, to propose hearings into the issue
of legalizing drugs. "Let's expose it for the fraud that it is,"
Biden said.

Source: New York Times ( NY)
Contact: letters@nytimes.com
Website: http://www.nytimes.com/
Pubdate: Fri, 19 Jun 1998
Author: Christopher S. Wren
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n476.a07.html



''We believe the global war on drugs is now causing more harm than
drug abuse itself.''

Under that banner headline in a double-truck ad of the June 8 New
York Times, an astounding array of prominent and accomplished world
citizens appealed to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan for a major
shift in drug-fighting worldwide.

Fully one-twelfth of all international trade involves traffic in
illegal narcotics, it is claimed. And while no one can be sure of
the scope of the drug economy, the number could be right on the
button. And it is also inescapable that governments worldwide
routinely fail to contain the worsening social deterioration that
accelerates despite ever-harsher methods.


Source: Boston Globe
Section: Page E04 of the Sunday opinion section
Contact: letters@globe.com
Website: http://www.boston.com/globe/
Pubdate: Sunday, June 21, 1998
Columnist: David Nyhan is a Globe columnist.
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n480.a03.html


Drug War Policy



The op-ed by David Musto confirms beyond question what many have
suspected for a long time: the author of a book exposing many basic
inanities of drug prohibition twenty-five years ago still doesn't "get
it" himself.

Brash drug warrior Hastert may have bitten off more than he can chew.

Time, a major promoter of crack hysteria an decade ago, is at it again
with this depressingly similar "special" on methamphetamine which
could easily have been written by the DEA.



AFTER three decades of studying the history of drugs and drug policy in
the United States, I was impressed by the Clinton administration's
recent proposal for a 10-year drug strategy. Here, at last, comes
recognition of the need for a steady and consistent policy over an
appropriate span of time. A common fault in drug policy has been
anticipating or promising dramatic results within an unrealistically
brief period.


Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA)
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/
Pubdate: Fri, 19 Jun 1998
Author: David F. Musto



A congressional subcommittee led by Congressman J. Dennis Hastert
challenged the National Basketball Association Tuesday to adopt a "zero
tolerance" policy on drugs.

In a letter sent to NBA Commissioner David Stern and Players
Association Executive Director Billy Hunger, 27 members of Congress
urged the league to expand its drug testing policy so all players are
tested for marijuana use. According to a task force statement, only NBA
rookies are tested for marijuana.


Pubdate: Wed, 17 June 1998
Source: Daily Herald ( IL)
Section: Sec. 1, page 26
Contact: fencepost@dailyherald.com
URL: Website: http://www.dailyherald.com/



The drug once called speed has come roaring back as a powdery plague on
America's heartland...

BILLINGS--It's a full-moon Friday night, and Jennifer, 25, a hard-core
looker ( smoker of methamphetamine, known as crank) has been wide awake
around the clock for almost four days. She isn't yet seeing plastic
people, shadow men or transparent spiders-just three of the fabled
hallucinations of the Billings, Mont., crank scene, a hyper stimulated
subculture sickeningly rich in slang and folklore.


Pubdate: 22 Jun 1998 Week
Source: Time Magazine
Section: Vol 151 No 24 Page 24
Contact: letters@time.com
Author: Walter Kirn with Patrick Dawson
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n467.a11.html





The tobacco bill died officially in the middle of last week. A
remarkably prescient editorial in the Seattle Times predicted both its
demise and the reason for it days before the event.

The next pair of articles suggest reasons why we may be headed toward
some form of prohibition: the self-righteous conviction that health
concerns alone entitle the government to control behavior on the one
hand-and the power of the profit motive to exploit every available
opportunity on the other.

The editorial in the San Jose Merc demonstrates that most people, the
Mercury-News editorial writer included, simply don't understand the
challenge implicit in the tobacco bill (or any other potential drug
regulatory bill, for that matter): how do we retain a company
producing an addictive, dangerous product as a responsible,
law-abiding, tax-paying, member of the community? Demand for their
product will always be there; failure to retain a legal industry
producing it will guarantee that a criminal product, sold on a black
market under the worst possible circumstances.



IF you thought the primary purpose of the federal legislation was to
curb teen smoking, punish cigarette-makers for past deceptions, or
recoup health costs for victims, think again.

Democrats and Republicans have latched onto the package as an
all-purpose vehicle for tax-cut goodies - even as they push for a
bipartisan, multibillion-dollar tax hike on cigarettes that will
disproportionately hit middle- and lower-income Americans.


Political freeloaders are tacking on ideological decorations to a
once-promising tobacco bill that inevitably - and mercifully - will
collapse of its own weight.


Source: Seattle Times ( WA)
Contact: opinion@seatimes.com
Website: http://www.seattletimes.com/
Pubdate: Sunday 14 June 1998
Author: OPINION - Seattle-Times
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n457.a05.html



Proposed legislation would make it illegal to carry a cigarette

Toronto Star Queen's Park Bureau

Ontario students could be suspended and sent for addiction counselling
if they're caught with an unlit cigarette under a bill that has been
approved in principle.

Opposition MPPs yesterday denounced the proposed legislation as
draconian, likening it to ``grabbing a shovel to swat a fly.''


Source: Toronto Star (Canada)
Contact: lettertoed@thestar.com
Website: http://www.thestar.com/
Pubdate: Friday, June 19, 1998
Author: Theresa Boyle
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n473.a03.html



Strawberry scented cigarettes, shaped like marijuana joints and spiked
with extra nicotine, are being sampled at an alarming rate by San
Francisco teens, a new survey shows.

The cigarettes, called "bidis" -- also "beedies" and "beadies" -- are
manufactured in India and are widely available in grocery stores in
paper-wrapped bundles of 20 for as little as $1.25 a pack.

Results show that 58 percent of students surveyed at four city high
schools had tried bidis at least once and that two-thirds knew someone
under the legal age of 18 who had purchased them.


Source: San Francisco Chronicle
Contact: chronletters@sfgate.com
Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/
Pubdate: Thu, 18 Jun 1998
Author: Sabin Russell, Chronicle Staff Writer
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n476.a03.html



THE Senate just couldn't handle the tobacco issue.

If senators just could have focused on the original goals of Sen. John
McCain's tobacco bill -- curbing teen smoking, regulating nicotine as a
drug, ending the flood of costly lawsuits and penalizing the tobacco
industry for years of deadly lies -- they might have been able to pass
it. Instead, they focused on the money, the $516 billion the bill was
expected to cost the tobacco industry over 25 years.


Source: San Jose Mercury News ( CA)
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/
Pubdate: Fri, 19 Jun 1998
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n477.a03.html





After a month of dreary news from California, it's a pleasure to
highlight the "man bites dog" story from Simi Valley. Of course the
cops didn't give back all the dope- do you think they're stupid just
because they're cops?

A steady stream of stories attesting to British interest in medical
marijuana continues.

AMR may be controversial, but no one can say they haven't been busy.
The Latest state where they a trying to qualify a petition is Nevada,
where the already complicated initiative process is further
complicated by a need to amend the State's constitution, and thus hold
a second election.



Authorities say 62-year-old Dean Jones, who was arrested last month, is
protected by a law that allows for medical use of pot.

SIMI VALLEY--It was a rare day for the Simi Valley police--giving back
pot plants they earlier seized from the backyard of a man arrested on
suspicion of felony cultivation.

But Dean Jones had a court order requiring officers to do just that.
The order came after prosecutors Friday said Jones was protected by
Proposition 215, the 1996 medical marijuana law, and would not be


Source: Los Angeles Times ( CA)
Pubdate: 20 June 1998
Contact: letters@latimes.com
Website: http://www.latimes.com/
Fax: 213-237-4712
Author: COLL METCALFE, Times Staff Writer
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n478.a06.html



A secret cannabis farm has been established with the support of the
Government to investigate the medicinal uses of the illegal drug.
Thousands of cannabis plants are being grown in large glasshouses, with
humidity, light and temperature controls, at an undisclosed location in
south-east England.

The 10 million pound project is being carried out behind tall fences,
amid tight security.

GW Pharmaceuticals, the first company licensed by the Government to
cultivate and possess large quantifies of cannabis, has been advised on
security by the Home Office and Special Branch.


Source: Telegraph, The ( UK)
Pubdate: Fri, 12 Jun 1998
Contact: et.letters@telegraph.co.uk
Author: Sean O'Neill
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n459.a05.html



Allowing patients to use an illegal drug is an issue of compassion,
not Cheech and Chong, supporters say.

CARSON CITY -- A group that wants Nevadans to vote to allow sick people
to use marijuana for medical reasons turned in petitions Tuesday signed
by more than 69,000 people. But whether that is enough to qualify for a
spot on the November ballot remains in doubt. "We know it is close,"
said Dave Fratello, secretary-treasurer of Americans for Medical
Rights. "If we lose one county we don't make it."


Source: Las Vegas Review-Journal
Pubdate: Wed, 17 Jun 1998
Contact: letters@lvrj.com
Fax: 702-383-4676
Postal: P.O. Box 70, Las Vegas, Nev. 89125
Website: http://www.lvrj.com/lvrj_home/
Author: Ed Vogel Donrey Capital Bureau
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n464.a06.html



Like every previous study of the "marijuana problem" by an appointed
Commission since 1896, the latest one in Canada has concluded that the
harms of Cannabis are greatly exaggerated and its use either shouldn't
be penalized, or penalties should be token.

Sadly, the corollary is that in every case, such findings have been
ignored by whoever is in power.

Relax marijuana laws: federal study



A federally funded think-tank on drug abuse recommends decriminalizing
marijuana possession.

The Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse says existing criminal penalties
against marijuana smokers have done little to enhance public health and
safety, while placing a heavy burden on police and the justice system.

The centre's newly published study, Cannabis Control in Canada, proposes
dropping jail as a possible punishment for marijuana possession. Instead,
the offence would become a civil violation, subject to a fine only.


Source: Ottawa Citizen (Canada)
Contact: letters@thecitizen.southam.ca
Website: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/
Pubdate: Sun, 14 Jun 1998
Author: Jim Bronskill The Ottawa Citizen
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n464.a10.html


International News



Countries from the former Soviet Union made a huge addition to the
worlds's thriving criminal drug market; their populations are young,
poor, and desperate; the countries themselves adjoin drug producing
nations or sit astride drug trade routes; there's relatively little
AIDS of Hep C awareness their incidence to explode along with
injection drug use. A worse recipe for social disaster is hard to

With each passing week, Colombia's news grows worse; it appears that
tebuthiuron (Spike) will be used, despite warnings from its
manufacturer against such use . Imagine our response if Canada
demanded we poison our environment and risk the health of our
population with such an agent, on the off chance that teens in Ontario
might use drugs.

Finally, just to prove that such behavior isn't limited to the US, It
gives some perverse satisfaction (but not pleasure) to cite the
diabolical way Canada is frustrating farmers who had planned to grow
hemp. If we are all very patient for another year or two, there will
eventually be a hemp crop in North America.



Smugglers take opium from Afghan mountains to European markets

OSH, Kyrgyzstan--FIRST Ravshan became an opium addict; then he found a
new career. His suppliers paid him in fat packets of white powder to
shuttle their product from this remote corner of Central Asia to new
customers in Russia.

Ravshan is thousands of miles from New York, where a drug summit was
held last week at the United Nations. But he is exactly the kind of
person President Clinton and other world leaders will have to reach if
they are to make a dent in the world's multibillion-dollar drug trade,
as they have pledged.


Pubdate: Sun, 14 Jun 1998
Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA)
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/
Author: Inga Saffron, Mercury News Moscow Bureau



DRUGS: The U.S. made weed killer can be dropped from higher
altitudes,boosting pilot safety, but its maker opposes this use.

Bogota, Colombia - Bowing to demands from Washington, the Colombian
government has agreed to test a granular herbicide to kill coca
crops,despite public warnings from the chemical's U.S. manufacturer
against its use in Colombia.


Pubdate: Sat, 20 Jun 1998
Source: Orange County Register ( CA)
Contact: letters@link.freedom.com
Website: http://www.ocregister.com/
Author: Diana Jean Schemo - The New York Times
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n477.a06.html



Some application errors have delayed the process

MONCTON - Poor paperwork is spoiling the province's inaugural attempt
to grow hemp.

Enterprising farmers from across the province eagerly sent in
applications to grow the sister plant of marijuana in early April.

Now, more than two months later, most of the farmers are still waiting
for the go-ahead from Ottawa - thanks to hundreds of error-filled
applications, says a Health Canada spokesperson.

"Probably a majority of applications had to be returned because things
were wrong," says spokesperson Bonnie Fox-McIntyre.


Source: New Brunswick Telegraph Journal ( Canada)
Contact: tjetg@nbnet.nb.ca
Website: http://www.nbpub.nb.ca/TELE/INDEX.HTM
Pubdate: Sat, 13 Jun 1998
Author: Mark Reid, Telegraph Journal




Nightline now Online

For anyone who missed it or wants to review it, the Nightline piece is now
available online using RealVideo (which can be downloaded for free at the
same site)



Register to vote on-line!

A brand new site now allows you to register to vote On-Line. This makes
it easier than ever to register and since the web is so heavily pro
reform it is likely to help our movement.

Simply visit


and register. In a week or two you receive a card that must be signed
and returned. Shortly thereafter you will receive you voter
registration authorization.

Please use this to register as many reformers as possible.




Mike Gray Interview with Art Bell On-Line

The Mike Gray Interview on the Art Bell Show was terrific, (nationally
syndicated on 400 radio shows late night Thursday). It can be heard using
RealAudio at:


(You may want to fast forward to the second hour of the show which is
Mike's hour)

This was a really terrific job by Mike. He was knowledgeable,
articulate and covered all the main bases. He took on and debunked the
most prevalent drug war myths. Art is a full blown reformer and tossed
mostly soft balls. Couldn't have been much sweeter.

Mike got out our latest really good drug stat "The number of cops in
jail (due to drug corruption) has gone up 500% in the last 5 years as
well of dozens of other interesting snippets and facts that definitely
moved all but the most ardent drug warrior to both reconsider their
views and/or buy the book.

Art plugged DrugSense on his web site and the new member sign ups went
through the roof this week.




`It has ever been my experience that folks who have no vices have very
few virtues' - Abraham Lincoln


DS Weekly is one of the many free educational services DrugSense offers
our members. Watch this feature to learn more about what DrugSense can
do for you.

News/COMMENTS-Editor: Tom O'Connell (tjeffoc@drugsense.org)
Senior-Editor: Mark Greer (mgreer@drugsense.org)

We wish to thank all our contributors and Newshawks.


In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is
distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior
interest in receiving the included information for research and
educational purposes.


Please help us help reform. Send any news articles you find on any drug
related issue to editor@mapinc.org


DrugSense provides this service at no charge BUT IT IS NOT FREE TO PRODUCE.

We incur many costs in creating our many and varied services. If you
are able to help by contributing to the DrugSense effort please Make
checks payable to MAP Inc. send your contribution to:

The Media Awareness Project (MAP) Inc.
d/b/a DrugSense
PO Box 651
Porterville, CA 93258
(800) 266 5759



The articles posted here are generally copyrighted by the source publications. They are reproduced here for educational purposes under the Fair Use Doctrine (17 U.S.C., section 107). NORML is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit educational organization. The views of the authors and/or source publications are not necessarily those of NORML. The articles and information included here are not for sale or resale.

Comments, questions and suggestions. E-mail

Reporters and researchers are welcome at the world's largest online library of drug-policy information, sponsored by the Drug Reform Coordination Network at: http://www.druglibrary.org/

Next day's news
Previous day's news

Back to 1998 Daily News index for June 18-24

Back to Portland NORML news archive directory

Back to 1998 Daily News index (long)

This URL: http://www.pdxnorml.org/980624.html