------------------------------------------------------------------- The Government's War On Marijuana Is As Dishonest As It Is Lacking In Scientific Legitimacy (A Physician's Letter To The Editor Of 'The San Mateo County Times' Responds To The Newspaper's Editorial Blaming California's Medical Marijuana Supply Problem On 'The Antics Of Arrogant, Confirmed Potheads') Date: Sat, 04 Jul 1998 19:32:12 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: PUB LTE in San Mateo County Times Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com (Tom O'Connell) Pubdate: 26 Jun 1998 Source: San Mateo County Times Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.smctimes.com/ The present status of medical marijuana is disgraceful, but hardly a stalemate- "shambles" is far more apt. Nearly everywhere in the state, legitimate patients must either go without a uniquely helpful medicine or risk the criminal market. Why blame the "antics of arrogant, confirmed potheads" and not the intransigence of federal and state law enforcement officers, who from the outset, have insisted that marijuana couldn't possibly be a legitimate therapeutic agent? To claim that "government authorities have almost no choice but to shut down such organizations because of their behavior" is both illogical and unfair. Whatever the "antics" of the San Francisco Buyers Club, they were not a reason to penalize legitimate patients. Besides, if you'll check news sources, you will find that cooperative clubs and patients have been subjected to felony prosecutions throughout the state, from Mendocino to Ventura. Your statement that "there is not one completed scientific study on the medicinal values of marijuana" is simply untrue. There is an extensive medical literature attesting to the safety and efficacy of marijuana in a variety of conditions. True, there are no double blind controlled studies (extremely difficult to design for a smoked agent with a characteristic aroma). There are also no recent studies for the simple reason that for over fifteen years, NIDA has stubbornly refused to approve release of marijuana for human study. The government's war on marijuana is as dishonest as it is lacking in scientific legitimacy. Sincerely, Dr. Thomas O'Connell, San Mateo
------------------------------------------------------------------- Teen Abortions, Birthrates Both Falling, US Says (An 'Associated Press' Article In 'The Los Angeles Times' Notes A Fortunate Social Development That Occurred Without Any Prohibitions On Adult Behaviors) Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 22:25:59 EDT Errors-To: email@example.com Reply-To: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) To: Multiple recipients of list
Subject: Teen pregnancy news and drug policy This story from today's LA Times provides more evidence that emotionally charged problems of adolescence are best addressed by public-health, non-punitive policies. Imagine the impact if teen pregnancy were criminalized! Implications of this welcome news for drug policy are obvious and IMHO should be widely pointed out in our letters and discussions. We'd probably see many more such headlines for teen drug if public-health-based drug control measures were to replace (not just supplement) law enforcement approaches. As somebody said, get Dirty Harry out of the way and let Mother Theresa do her thing! *** Friday, June 26, 1998 Teen Abortions, Birthrates Both Falling, U.S. Says From Associated Press WASHINGTON--Fewer teenagers are having abortions, with rates dropping even faster than falling teen birthrates in nearly every state. The combination pushed the teen pregnancy rate down coast to coast, the government said Thursday. The report analyzed data from 42 states and the District of Columbia and found that pregnancy rates for females ages 15 to 19 dropped everywhere between 1992 and 1995. Abortion rates dropped in every reporting state but Maine, Ohio and Oregon. Twenty-six states reported declines in abortion rates of 15% or higher, whereas just four states had birthrates that dropped so dramatically. The report makes it clear that falling teen birthrates cannot be attributed to an increase in abortions. In fact, in every state that reports data, fewer teens are getting pregnant in the first place, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Thursday. The major reasons: less sex and greater use of birth control, officials said. Still, nearly 1 million teenage girls become pregnant each year, and more than 200,000 girls have abortions. A pregnancy rate combines a state's birth and abortion rates, along with an estimate of miscarriages and stillbirths. Some large states--California, Illinois and Florida--do not track the pregnancy rate. Search the archives of the Los Angeles Times for similar stories. You will not be charged to look for stories, only to retrieve one. Copyright Los Angeles Times
------------------------------------------------------------------- DARE Program Disappointing (A Letter To The Editor Of 'The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel' From A Parent Of DARE Students Believes DARE 'Does Encourage Kids To Try Drugs And Alcohol, While At The Same Time . . . Condemning Everyone Else For Drug And Alcohol Use') Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 10:20:56 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US WI: PUB LTE: DARE Program Disappointing Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (WI) Contact: email@example.com Fax: (414) 224-8280 Website: http://www.jsonline.com/ Pubdate: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 DARE PROGRAM DISAPPOINTING I agree with the Shorewood school district wanting to drop the DARE program. I had three of my children go through DARE in Waukesha, and I was very disappointed with the program, not to mention the poor attitudes my children had when they finished the program. I believe that DARE does encourage kids to try drugs and alcohol, while at the same time this program has the kids condemning everyone else for drug and alcohol use. This is almost a double standard. I really think that the program should either be done away with completely or severely cut down to two or three weeks instead of 13 weeks. Rose Jones, Waukesha
------------------------------------------------------------------- Who Caused Drug Prohibition Trouble? (A Letter To The Editor Of 'The Standard-Times' In New Bedford, Massachusetts, Says It's Incorrect To Blame The Havoc Attributed To Illegal Drugs On Traffickers, Asking, 'Is It Not Obvious That The Government Created Them When It Abdicated Its Responsibility For The Regulation Of Certain Drugs, Just As It Created The Bootleggers' Market When It Prohibited Alcohol In The '20s?) Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998 12:17:58 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US MA: PUB LTE: Who Caused Drug Prohibition Trouble? Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: John Smith Source: Standard-Times (MA) Contact: YourView@S-T.com Website: http://www.s-t.com/ Pubdate: Fri, 26 June 1998 WHO CAUSED DRUG PROHIBITION TROUBLE? Re: "There's no apparent value in repeating the Drug Watch experiment," by editor Ken Hartnett (June 22): Thank you, Ken Hartnett, for a very informative report. I hope you will permit me to take issue with you on one crucial point. You share Jim Ragsdale's rage at drug trafficking, "what it did, and continues to do, to this city", laying the blame at the door of the drug barons and importers. But you omitted to tell us who created the drug cartels. Is it not obvious that the government created them when it abdicated its responsibility for the regulation of certain drugs, just as it created the bootleggers' market when it prohibited alcohol in the '20s? Prohibition of the drug alcohol entailed chronic corruption and social disruption bordering, in cities such as Chicago and New York, on complete breakdown. How is it that we have no problem of black market alcohol in the nation's schoolyards? Because the government took the distribution and regulation out of the hands of the bootleggers. In my view, as long as that unholy trinity -- police, press and politicians -- continue to march in lock-step providing scare stories, Prohibition will remain in place, and our schoolgrounds and inner cities, I fear, will continue to be inundated with drugs. Let the government re-assume its responsibilities for the regulation of all drugs and your friendly neighborhood pusher will find himself unable to make ends meet. He will gradually disappear, the distribution network will collapse, and our schools will no longer be invaded by pushers and policemen with sniffer dogs. PAT DOLAN Vancouver, B.C.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Demonstrator Right To Push For Freedom (A Letter To The Editor Of 'The Centre Daily Times' In Pennsylvania Supports Retired Penn State Professor Julian Heicklen For Protesting Marijuana Prohibition) Subj: PUB My first letter published! From: Mark Greer (MGreer@mapinc.org) Date: Mon, 29 Jun 1998 13:33:46 -0700 Demonstrator right to push for freedom I am writing to express my unequivocal support for the actions of retired Professor Julian Heicklen in his efforts to battle the horribly unjust laws against the use of marijuana. I hope everyone understands that Heicklen is taking these actions not because he cares about marijuana, but rather because he cares about freedom. Not having learned our lesson from the tragic results of this nation's first prohibition, we are now repeating this mistake on an even grander scale. Thousands of deaths and millions of ruined lives have been caused by our second prohibition. The freedoms and rights of everyone have been greatly diminished through such new procedures as asset forfeiture (where the police have the right to legally rob the houses, cars and life savings of people who are not convicted of any crime) no-knock warrants, roadblocks, wiretaps -- the list goes on and on and gets longer every day. Heicklen has offered his reputation to help bring about an end to these great injustices. Everyone who cares about freedom should stand in support of him and go to the rallies to demand his liberty. John Wanless Morganton, North Carolina *** At 03:52 PM 6/26/98 -0400, John Wanless wrote: Mark, I wanted to share with you my first letter that I got published. It is in the on-line version (I'm not sure if it got in the print version or not) of the Centre Daily Times (Central Pennsylvania-today's edition 6-26-98). This is the paper that serves the area around Penn State where Prof. Julian Heicklin is carrying out his protest. This is a copy of the letter: John Wanless Morganton, N.C. The URL for today's Letters at the on-line site is: http://www.centredaily.com/opinion/letters/lett0626.htm#b I hope you can use it at MAP. I can't tell you how much I admire and appreciate your efforts. Yours in unity for reform, John Wanless
------------------------------------------------------------------- Youths Using More Heroin, Pot, US Says ('The Chicago Tribune' Says That, Two Weeks Before The Clinton Administration Launches A Five-Year, $2 Billion Anti-Drug Media Campaign, The White House Drug Czar, General Barry McCaffrey, Said Thursday That Marijuana And Heroin Use Is Increasing Among Young People, Citing Its Own Unquestioned Semi-Annual 'Pulse Check' Statistics That The Newspaper Didn't Even Bother To Quote)Date: Tue, 30 Jun 1998 22:35:03 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: Youths Using More Heroin, Pot, U.S. Says Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Steve Young (firstname.lastname@example.org) Source: Chicago Tribune (IL) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.chicago.tribune.com/ Pubdate: 26 June 1998 Author: Katherine Tang YOUTHS USING MORE HEROIN, POT, U.S. SAYS WASHINGTON -- Two weeks before the Clinton administration plans to launch a five-year, $2 billion anti-drug media campaign, the White House drug czar on Thursday reported that marijuana and heroin use is increasing among young people. Marijuana, used by people of all ages and economic and social groups, is on the rise among junior high school students, said Barry McCaffrey, director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy. Although most heroin users are older, chronic users who inject the drug, the number of new, younger users who inhale or smoke it is increasing, he reported. The Office of National Drug Control Policy released its semi-annual Pulse Check describing trends in drug use as reported by ethnographers, drug treatment centers and law enforcement authorities around the country. According to the study, the price of heroin is going down as its purity is going up, enabling users to inhale or smoke it instead of injecting it. Alan Leshner, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, attributed the rise in heroin use among youths and in suburbia and affluent communities to the erroneous belief that sniffing or smoking heroin is not as addictive as injecting it. "The biggest message in the current situation is that we need far more and far better public education about drugs and what they are and what they actually do," Leshner said, using the spread of heroin as an example. "Misunderstanding and ignorance about drugs, frankly, is killing us." The campaign starting July 9th includes ads on television, radio, the Internet and in newspapers.
------------------------------------------------------------------- High Court Thumps Repeat Offenders ('The Associated Press' Says The US Supreme Court Ruled Friday That The Constitutional Protection Against Being Tried Twice For The Same Crime Does Not Protect Convicted Criminals From A Second Sentencing Proceeding In Non-Capital Punishment Cases - In Effect Endorsing The Use Of California's 'Three Strikes' Law Against Yet Another Marijuana Offender) Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 22:33:03 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) To: Multiple recipients of list (email@example.com) Subject: High Court Thumps Repeat Offenders Another chink in the tottering U.S. Constitution dealt by the Supreme Court in the name of the (un)holy war on drugs. Insult to injury that the offending substance was cannabis. Friday June 26 2:26 PM EDT High Court Thumps Repeat Offenders LAURIE ASSEO Associated Press Writer WASHINGTON (AP) - The constitutional protection against being tried twice for the same crime does not protect convicted criminals from a second sentencing proceeding in non-capital punishment cases, the Supreme Court ruled Friday. The 5-4 ruling in a case involving California's ``three strikes'' law makes it easier for states to impose stiffer sentences on repeat criminals. The justices said California prosecutors can try a second time to convince a court to impose an enhanced sentence on a Pomona man who was convicted of selling marijuana. The man argued unsuccessfully that once an appeals court ruled his prior conviction for assault could not be used to enhance his sentence for the marijuana crime, prosecutors could not seek a retrial of that issue. The Constitution's Fifth Amendment says people cannot be prosecuted twice for the same crime. ``Many states have chosen to implement procedural safeguards to protect defendants who may face dramatic increases in their sentences'' for being a repeat offender, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor wrote for the court. ``We do not believe that because the states have done so, we are compelled to extend the double jeopardy bar.'' Angel Jaime Monge's sentence for his 1995 conviction was doubled because his marijuana conviction was deemed a ``second strike'' - he had been convicted of assault with a deadly weapon in 1992. California's 1994 three strikes law calls for doubling the prison sentence for second convictions and results in sentences ranging from 25 years to life in prison for a third felony. A state appeals court upheld Monge's marijuana conviction, but threw out his doubled sentence, saying there was insufficient proof that he used a dangerous or deadly weapon during his 1992 crime. The appeals court also barred prosecutors' attempt to retry that aspect of the previous case. To do so would violate the protection against double jeopardy, it said. But the California Supreme Court cleared the way for such a retrial by ruling that the double-jeopardy protection does not apply in such circumstances. On Friday, the nation's highest court agreed Friday. The Supreme Court previously has ruled that double-jeopardy protection does apply in death-penalty cases. In 1981, the court said states cannot seek the death penalty in a second sentencing after a defendant's first jury declined to impose a death sentence. But O'Connor said death penalty cases have ``unique circumstances'' and noted the court generally has ruled that double-jeopardy protections do not apply to other sentencing proceedings. Her opinion was joined by Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist and Justices Anthony M. Kennedy, Clarence Thomas and Stephen G. Breyer. Dissenting were Justices John Paul Stevens, Antonin Scalia, David H. Souter and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Scalia wrote for himself, Souter and Ginsburg that the extra sentence for Monge seemed to be ``attributable to conviction of a new crime'' and therefore should qualify for double-jeopardy protection. The California sentencing law ``is full of sentencing enhancements that look exactly like separate crimes and that expose the defendant to additional maximum punishment,'' Scalia said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- High Court OKs Stiff 'Three-Strikes' Sentences ('San Francisco Examiner' Version) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: "MN" (email@example.com) Subject: MN: US: CA: High Court Oks Stiff "3-Strikes' Sentences Date: Sun, 28 Jun 1998 16:54:16 -0500 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Pubdate: June 26, 1998 Source: San Francisco Examiner (CA) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.examiner.com/ Author: Victoria Colliver, Emelyn Cruz Lat and Eric Brazil HIGH COURT OKS STIFF "3-STRIKES' SENTENCES Tough-on-crime law does not constitute double jeopardy The Supreme Court sharpened the teeth of California's "three strikes" law Friday, making it easier for states to stiffen sentences for repeat offenders based on past crimes. In a decision hailed by the law's author and criticized by San Francisco's chief deputy public defender, the justices ruled, 5-4, that the constitutional protection against being tried twice for the same crime does not apply to sentencing proceedings in non-death penalty cases. Therefore, the court said California's tough-on-crime three strikes law can be used to double what would have been a Pomona man's five-year prison term for selling marijuana. The court reached the same decision in the case as did the California Supreme Court in 1997. It does not apply to death penalty cases. "This is a really huge decision, not just for three strikes, but for law enforcement throughout the country," said Mike Reynolds of Fresno, author of the law. "It could have been catastrophic if it had come down against us," said Reynolds, whose 18-year-old daughter was murdered by two repeat offenders in 1993. Twenty-three states have adopted similar laws since California's three strikes measure went on the books in March, 1994, and a contrary decision would have triggered "a mass exodus of criminals throughout the country," he said. The defendant in the case decided by the Supreme Court had argued that once an appeals court ruled his prior conviction could not be used to increase his sentence, prosecutors could not seek a retrial of that issue. Peter Keane, chief deputy public defender for San Francisco, did not share Reynolds' jubilation. "It's a reflection of how three strikes laws in general have eaten away at many constitutional rights. The U.S. Supreme Court has taken protections related to double jeopardy and has driven a hole through that protection," Keane said. The decision was "unfortunate but not surprising," in view of recent Supreme Court decisions in cases involving three strikes laws, he said. It does not change the way the three strikes law is used in California, rather "it ratifies what prosecutors have been doing." Perhaps the greatest impact will be felt in other states, he said. "It opens the doors to stiffer sentences," Keane said. "If other states adopt three strikes laws, they would not have to put up with the kinds of legal fights California has put up with in order to sustain its constitutionality. The California Attorney General, with the U.S. Supreme Court's blessing, has blazed a path for them." In writing for the court, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor said "many states have chosen to implement procedural safeguards to protect defendants who may face dramatic increases in their sentences . . . We do not believe that because the states have done so, we are compelled to extend the double jeopardy bar." Angel Jaime Monge's sentence for his 1995 conviction was doubled because his marijuana conviction was deemed a second strike - he had been convicted of assault with a deadly weapon in 1992. California's 1994 three strikes law results in sentences ranging from 25 years to life in prison for third felony convictions, and calls for a doubling of the prison sentence for second convictions. A state appeals court upheld Monge's marijuana conviction but threw out his doubled sentence after ruling there was insufficient proof that he had used a dangerous or deadly weapon during his 1992 crime. The appeals court also barred prosecutors' attempt to retry that aspect of the previous case. To do so, the appeals court said, would violate Monge's constitutional protection against being tried twice for the same crime. The Constitution's Fifth Amendment bars such double jeopardy. The state Supreme Court, however, cleared the way for just such a retrial by overturning the appeals court's ruling and stating that the double-jeopardy protection does not apply in such circumstances. In Friday's ruling, the nation's highest court said the state Supreme Court was correct. O'Connor noted the high court has previously ruled that double-jeopardy protection does apply in death-penalty cases. The court ruled in 1981 that states cannot seek the death penalty in a second sentencing proceeding after a defendant's first jury declined to impose a death sentence. But O'Connor said death penalty cases have unique circumstances and said that the court generally has ruled that double-jeopardy protections do not apply to sentencing proceedings. Her opinion was joined by Chief Justice William Rehnquist and Justices Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas and Stephen Breyer. Dissenting were Justices John Paul Stevens, Antonin Scalia, David Souter and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. 1998 San Francisco Examiner Page A 1
------------------------------------------------------------------- Physicians Own Tons Of Tobacco, While Warning Of Smoking Risks (An Original Database Search By 'The Associated Press' Shows That Hundreds Of Doctors In 23 States Control Production Of More Than Seven Million Pounds Of Tobacco Worth $13 Million) Date: Mon, 29 Jun 1998 00:49:12 -0700 From: Paul Freedom (firstname.lastname@example.org) Organization: Oregon Libertarian Patriots To: Cannabis Patriots (email@example.com) Subject: CanPat - Physicians Own Tons of Tobacco, While Warning of Smoking Risks Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org JUNE 26, 10:02 EDT Physicians Own Tons of Tobacco, While Warning of Smoking Risks By ALLEN G. BREED Associated Press Writer RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Hundreds of doctors across the country own and profit from tons of tobacco, despite decades of health warnings, scolding from peers and in some cases their own ethical reservations. They're family practitioners who warn teen-agers not to smoke, psychiatrists who treat addiction, oncologists who identify malignant tumors and surgeons who remove them. One tobacco-owning doctor was a longtime regional medical director for the American Cancer Society. Another runs a public health department. A third writes a newspaper's health tips column. Almost none smoke themselves. ``I won't smoke,'' says Stephen Jackson, an orthopedic surgeon in Paducah, Ky., who co-owns the government rights to grow 1,400 pounds of burley tobacco a year. ``I mean, it will kill you.'' All tell their patients not to smoke or chew tobacco. ``I get mad with them, fuss at them every day,'' says Richard Rush, a family practitioner from Conway, S.C., with more than 11,000 pounds of flue-cured tobacco allotted to his farm. Nonetheless, they are among at least 760 doctors and other health care workers who own valuable federal tobacco-growing rights, known as allotments or quotas, according to a computer analysis by The Associated Press. They practice in 23 states, from Florida to Alaska, Massachusetts to California. Some of the doctors own minuscule government rights, as little as 21 pounds annually; one in South Carolina has 932,000 pounds. All told, these doctors control production of more than 7 million pounds of tobacco - enough to make 193 million packs of cigarettes a year. They also grow nearly 290,000 pounds of the varieties of leaf used in chewing tobacco and cigar wrappers. At last year's sales prices, their leaf would be worth $13 million - although a large portion of that goes to family members, sharecroppers and those who lease much of the crop. For professionals who have taken an oath not to do harm, those numbers are ``shocking and disappointing,'' medical ethicist Arthur Caplan says. ``I think you just cannot argue that you're going to make money on the back of this obvious health menace,'' says Caplan, director of the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania. ``To own and farm and produce tobacco as a doctor, especially in small communities, sends a resoundingly wrong message.'' The fact that many of these doctors grew up in those small communities is often their reason for being involved in tobacco. Even so, some are uneasy about it. Dr. Edwin Norris has no doubt that a three-pack-a-day habit hastened his father's death at age 53 from coronary disease. And the Mountain City, Tenn., general practitioner and cosmetic surgeon has little doubt that tobacco produced under his 1,925-pound quota is harming other people's fathers. ``Even though it's legal,'' Norris says, ``we're still responsible for some of the effects of it.'' His explanation for keeping the tobacco: Neighbors who actually raise it for him need the poundage to make a living. Other physicians bought their farms as investments and acknowledge tobacco proceeds contribute to their wealth. Although they may only get a nickel to 15 cents a pound for leasing their tobacco rights to farmers, quotas help pay mortgages and add to the land's assessed value. With talk in Washington about possible $8-a-pound federal tobacco buyouts some day, the leaf could constitute an even more valuable asset. ``I'm too greedy,'' George Burrus, a cardiovascular surgeon in Nashville, Tenn., says when asked about his decision to keep his 6,500-pound quota, even though he says he knows tobacco is ``killing people.'' He clears about $4,000 a year from leasing his leaf. ``I don't worry about it enough to (sell out) since I don't feel like, say, the guy that's raising dope.'' *** The AP identified these doctors by cross-checking a federal farm database with medical rosters from tobacco states. To verify matches, the AP contacted scores of physicians by telephone. Some hung up when they heard the word ``tobacco.'' Most who stayed on the line expressed ambivalence. ``Absolutely schizophrenic'' is how Dr. William Grigsby described the notion of physicians growing tobacco. ``It's crazy, but I'll tell you why we do it,'' says the general surgeon from Kingsport, Tenn., who owns about 3,700 pounds of quota. ``Almost the only doctors who raise tobacco have grown up on the farm and have the kinfolks there.'' One is Richard Calhoun. He was raised on a tobacco farm, and tobacco money helped put him through college and medical school. On Wednesdays, when other doctors hit the golf course, Calhoun dons bib overalls and a baseball cap and drives a beat-up red flatbed truck around his mountainside farm in western North Carolina. He raises hay, cattle, Christmas trees and about 7,000 pounds of burley. ``Tobacco is a proud heritage for North Carolina,'' says Calhoun, who practices in Jefferson, near the Tennessee line. ``I want to maintain that part of my heritage.'' So while he lectures his three children - ages 9, 11 and 13 - on the ills of smoking, he makes sure they help out on the farm. ``They're still young, but they know what it is to work in the dirt - and that this is actually a cash crop that can be grown for farm income.'' He knows the links between the crop he grows and diseases he treats, from cancer to heart disease. Is that inconsistent? ``I do feel that tobacco is harmful to one's health,'' Calhoun replies. ``But more importantly than that, I feel that, as citizens of the United States, we have the freedom of choice. And I don't think that governmental regulation should infringe upon one's ability to make choices in this regard.'' Dr. Wendell Levi Jr. agrees. In 45 years as a thoracic surgeon, he has removed cancer-ravaged lungs, but he has little sympathy for smokers. ``If they're stupid enough to smoke, that's (their) business, I suppose,'' says Levi, a Sumter, S.C., tobacco owner. ``I've never had time to feel guilty about something like that.'' Yes, he urges patients to quit smoking. ``But it's not very effective.'' But given the addictiveness of nicotine, quitting may not really be a choice, as even some tobacco-owning physicians acknowledge. William Gause, a family practitioner in Columbia, S.C., says he quit cigars shortly before the U.S. surgeon general first warned against smoking's health hazards. But he knows how hard it is for others to stop. ``It's easier for me to get somebody off of, say, cocaine than it is to get them off of tobacco,'' Gause says. Still, he says he never gave much thought to how his 3,000 pounds of allotment, passed down through the family for three generations, might be fueling that addiction. ``I've so many other things going right now,'' Gause says. ``I've never really sat down to think about it. I may feel that way when I do - if I do.'' Others have thought about it - a lot. John Patterson, family practitioner and owner of a 900-pound quota in Irvine, Ky., has reached a moral bargain with himself. He is the Kentucky Medical Association's liaison with two farm health groups and says the $230 a year he earns from tobacco pays for the gasoline he uses traveling the state trying to help farmers diversify from burley. ``I think the question is: What is that doctor doing with that base?'' Patterson says. ``That is the way I've dealt with my ethical dilemma.'' Elizabeth Ward feels as if she's a hostage of tobacco. Ward, a physician's assistant in Wilmington, N.C., watched two years ago as her father slowly succumbed to smoking-related emphysema 15 years after he'd quit. Around the same time, Ward bought a farm from her aunt because it adjoins her mother's property. The farmer who rents her mother's tobacco allotment says he can continue doing so only if he can also continue renting the tobacco on Ward's property. ``I'm a crusader against tobacco,'' Ward says between patients. ``Every day, all day long, I talk to sick people, and a lot of their problems come from their bad habits - and bad habits I indirectly promote.'' But her mother wants to live out her days on a working farm. So Ward keeps her connection to the industry and takes her $300 annual share of the tobacco lease money. Many physicians make more than that on their tobacco. Dr. Pickens Moyd answers several questions in a phone interview, but when the issue turns to how much the Hartsville, S.C., surgeon earns from his 2,000 pounds of tobacco, irritation creeps into his Southern accent. ``I'll tell you what,'' he tells a reporter. ``You send me a check for half of what I'll lose, and I'll eat the other half. ... YOU'RE not going to cough it up to stop this cigarette thing.'' Frank Sessoms, a family practitioner in Pittsburgh who owns 2,200 pounds of allotment on a North Carolina farm that's been in his family for generations, also voices indignation. He's not part of some social problem, he says. ``I have a lot of patients, man, who always make excuses for themselves, for their behavior, whether it's alcohol, cocaine, tobacco, food,'' says Sessoms, one of 10 children of a steel mill worker. ``I'm overweight and I ain't blaming Heinz because they make ketchup with sugar in it. ``I'm blaming me, because I'm just greedy as hell.'' The income that medical oncologist Stanley Sides of Cape Girardeau, Mo., makes from 3,200 pounds of tobacco grown on his farm four hours east in Kentucky, he shares with a now-elderly neighbor who has helped tend the crop for 25 years. But he resents being singled out as a physician. ``You could argue that the farmers in South and North Dakota that raise barley (for beer companies) are also contributing to a product that ... hurts the lifestyle of many families. The issue is how far we take it.'' EDITOR'S NOTE: Allen G. Breed is the AP's Southeast regional reporter, based in Raleigh, N.C. AP news data manager Drew Sullivan performed computer analysis for this report.
------------------------------------------------------------------- RCMP Chief Says Lack Of Funds Means Mob `On A Roll' ('The Ottawa Citizen' Notes Royal Canadian Mounted Police Commissioner Philip Murray Is Shilling For Money To Fight Organized Crime, Saying Federal Police Have Been Reduced To The Regulatory Role Of 'Putting Out Isolated Fires In A Blazing Underworld Economy') Date: Wed, 01 Jul 1998 21:40:59 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service
From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Canada: RCMP Chief Says Lack Of Funds Means Mob `On A Roll' Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: Ottawa Citizen (Canada) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/ Pubdate: Fri 26 Jun 1998 Section: News A1 / Front Page Author: Ian MacLeod Assessing The War On Drugs: RCMP CHIEF SAYS LACK OF FUNDS MEANS MOB `ON A ROLL' Organized crime in Canada is now so pervasive that police have been reduced to putting out isolated fires in a blazing underworld economy, says RCMP Commissioner Philip Murray. ``While we're focusing all of our limited resources on the bikers, what's happening with the Mafia? What's happening with Asian-based organized crime and so on? ``They're on a roll. We're not resourced to really have a serious, concerted attack on organized crime. If we're putting all of our focus on one group, the rest of them have a free run.'' This is the first time the country's top policeman has publicly spoken about the scope of the problem and the consequences, as he sees them, of not launching a full counter-offensive. ``I think this is fundamentally, an extremely, extremely important issue. From my perspective, it's our absolute top priority,'' said Commissioner Murray, who spoke out during a wide-ranging interview about challenges facing the Mounties as they celebrate their 125th anniversary. Police and government officials have for years been warning about the growing threat posed by organized crime, which costs the Canadian economy billions of dollars a year. Eighteen international crime groups are estimated to be operating in the country, involved in smuggling, fraud, drug trafficking, money laundering and other illegal activities In recent years, the federal government has given police expanded powers to go after mobsters, passing laws to prevent criminals from enjoying the proceeds of their crime and to limit gang activities, and there have been some notable police successes, especially against smugglers. ``But we're still putting out fires,'' concedes Commissioner Murray, who has been leading the 21,000-strong force for four years. The top organized-crime players have ``got to come to the realization that Canada is not a place for them to do business, and we're far from there at the moment. ``That's going to take people, highly trained and skilled, (and) different kinds of resources. And it's going to take a lot of money.'' If not, he warns, organized crime ``will continue to grow, so there will be a lot greater impact on legitimate business, a lot greater impact on the overall tax base. ``The average citizen doesn't realize how pervasive the impact of organized crime is at the community level. Because of organized crime, we have higher taxes. We have businesses at a competitive disadvantage because others have used laundered money to set up their competition. ``We're a trading country, so others have to have confidence in our ability to be able to have not only a safe society, but a secure society in the larger sense that, if you're going to invest money here, it's going to be secure. ``While I may sound pessimistic, I really am optimistic that this is going to work, that there's going to be a federal-provincial co-operative effort, that the necessary resources are going to be put in place.'' Federal Solicitor General Andy Scott met with top law-enforcement officials in April to devise a national strategy against organized crime. He has also promised legislation to crack down on foreign criminals laundering money in Canada.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Assessing The War On Drugs - Street Cop Says Police Exploit Crackdown To Raise Budgets ('The Ottawa Citizen' Says That, In A Telephone Interview, Vancouver, British Columbia, Police Constable Gil Puder Said The Fight To Get Illegal Drugs Off The Streets Is A Losing Battle And The Only Winners Are The Police Who Earn Big Bucks For Overtime, And Promotions For Arrests That Accomplish Little) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Matt Elrod) To: email@example.com Subject: Canada: Street cop says police exploit crackdown to raise budgets Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 09:23:27 -0700 Lines: 101 Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: Ottawa Citizen Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: Fri 26 Jun 1998 Section: News A1 / Front Author: David Pugliese Assessing the war on drugs: Street cop says police exploit crackdown to raise budgets The war on drugs is a bust, and the only winners are the police who earn big bucks for overtime and promotions for arrests that accomplish little, according to a veteran police officer. Vancouver police Const. Gil Puder said the fight to get illegal drugs off the streets is a losing battle that does little to make society safer but a lot to keep police budgets healthy. ``It's a completely self-generating scheme,'' Const. Puder, a decorated officer with 16 years' experience, said yesterday in an interview from Vancouver. ``Line officers make more overtime. Bureaucrats get bigger empires. They can then use the fear of (drug) violence to get bigger budgets.'' He argued the police have failed in their fight against drugs in a new article in the Fraser Forum, published by the Fraser Institute. Const. Puder's long and respected career makes the article especially hard-hitting. He has trained fellow officers in the use of force at the B.C. Justice Institute and done research for B.C. Supreme Court Justice Wallace Oppal's 1994 inquiry into policing in the province. He has also worked on Vancouver's streets. In 1984, he shot and killed an addict turned bank robber who was using a fake handgun. Const. Puder believes marijuana should be legalized immediately and that a legal and controlled drug supply should be coupled with health and eduction programs. Law enforcement efforts in battling drugs are ``worse than useless,'' he maintained. ``They're counterproductive.'' In his article, Const. Puder wrote that, contrary to the Hollywood image of narcotics operations, police rarely catch wealthy drug lords living in mansions and driving expensive automobiles. ``Drug-related arrests can be very easy, with hundreds of available identifiable targets on city streets. Arrests usually involve poor, hungry people on street corners or in rooming houses and filth-strewn alleyways.'' At the same time, he argued that the drug war pays off for police, earning them massive amounts of overtime as they wait in court to testify in cases that have come come to trial. They quickly find that ``maximizing arrests (maximizes) earning power,'' he concludes. He said one colleague complained that a transfer to a desk job from drug enforcement cost him several thousand dollars in overtime. The officer was upset because the dip in his salary forced him to cancel a vacation. Const. Puder wrote that those officers with high arrest rates built on drug possession quickly climb the promotion ladder. ``Careerists use the same, often meaningless arrest statistics as performance measures to advance their rank and salary,'' he writes. At the same time, police drug experts have resorted to demonizing ``drug users'' and using the media to highlight ``trophy busts'' of seized narcotics. ``Turning sick people into monsters is useful for drug warriors since it impedes serious consideration of enforcement alternatives,'' he wrote. This is not the first time Const. Puder has spoken out on the issue. In April, Vancouver police Chief Bruce Chambers tried to prevent Const. Puder from giving a speech at a fraser Institute forum on policing and drugs. Chief Chambers wanted Const. Puder to change the content of his address, but the officer declined. However, Const. Puder did remove ``Vancouver Police Department'' from his name tag to show that his views did not represent those of the force. He inserted a similar disclaimer in his Fraser Forum article. He said he has not been disciplined for his views. Chief Chambers did not respond to a request for an interview. Const. Puder, a former SWAT team officer, said he is also concerned about the militarization of police in fighting the drug war. ``Why is it that those teams are being used on a daily basis, sometimes several times a day for drug raids for marijuana?'' he asked. ``I mean, come on. Let's wake up here.'' He said he finds its amazing that governments approve the sale of tobacco, which kills 40,000 people a year in Canada and the sale of alcohol, which kills 5,000 people annually. ``Yet it's a criminal offence to have marijuana and it has never killed anybody in recorded history,'' said Const. Puder. ``I'm sorry, but there's something wrong with this picture.'' He isn't the first Vancouver police officer to break ranks and speak out against the fight against drugs. In 1997, former deputy police chief Ken Higgins, then still with the Vancouver police force, also called for the decriminalization of narcotics possession. *** Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 12:42:22 -0400 (EDT) From: "Kelly T. Conlon" (conlonkt@mcmail.CIS.McMaster.CA) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Re: Canada: Street cop says police exploit crackdown to raise budgets On Fri, 26 Jun 1998, Matt Elrod wrote: > Assessing the war on drugs: > > Street cop says police exploit crackdown to raise budgets Speaking of which, the June issue of Fraser Forum has several articles on drug reform, including a reprint of Gil's speech: http://www.fraserinstitute.ca/forum/1998/june/feature_article.html http://www.fraserinstitute.ca/forum/1998/june/survey.html http://www.fraserinstitute.ca/forum/1998/june/illicit_drugs.html KTC
------------------------------------------------------------------- Colombia Denies Report It Will Test Herbicide ('The Dallas Morning News' Quotes Colombian Officials Rebutting A 'New York Times' Front-Page Story Saturday Saying The Government Would Bow To US Pressure And Eradicate Coca Crops With Tebuthiuron) Date: Tue, 7 Jul 1998 23:55:01 -0800 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Colombia: Colombia Denies Report It Will Test Herbicide Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Paul Wolf (email@example.com) Pubdate: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 Source: Dallas Morning News Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.dallasnews.com Author: Tod Robberson COLOMBIA DENIES REPORT IT WILL TEST HERBICIDE BOGOTA -- Colombian officials denied a published report that said the government had agreed to test a controversial herbicide on coca crops despite the manufacturer's own warnings against its use. The officials, led by Environment Minister Eduardo Verano, said in interviews Wednesday that the Colombian government has made no such decision regarding tests of the chemical herbicide tebuthiuron, sold commercially in the United States under the brand name Spike. The New York Times reported in a front-page story Saturday that the government, bowing to U.S. pressure, had agreed to test tebuthiuron to kill coca crops. The article contained no quotes, citations or other data to support the assertion that testing had been approved. The story was reprinted last weekend in several American newspapers, including The Dallas Morning News, the Chicago Tribune and the international edition of The Miami Herald. Andrew Rosenthal, foreign editor of The New York Times, declined to comment on the story or the government's response. Mr. Verano said that the government still was reviewing preliminary studies of the herbicide and that research teams were "deeply divided" over whether to allow its application on Colombian soil, even under test conditions. He added that no tests on coca crops have been approved and that the government still must review and accept a testing design before such steps are taken. Mr. Verano added that, as the chief government representative on the matter, he holds the final say on whether to conduct tests with tebuthiuron. The National Police chief, Gen. Rosso Jose Serrano, and the director of anti-narcotics enforcement, Col. Leonardo Gallego, have spoken in favor of testing tebuthiuron, arguing that it can be applied to crops more effectively and with less danger to crop-dusting pilots than the chemical herbicide currently being used. U.S. and Colombian scientists currently are trying to find ways that tebuthiuron can be tested, and ultimately put into full-time use, while allaying fears of international environmental groups that it could denude large patches of tropical land where it would be applied. "They are proceeding with the design of the experimental stage, and that is where we are now," Mr. Verano said. "Tebuthiuron will not touch Colombian soil, it will not be used on any Colombian land, until a design protocol is submitted and approved. This has not happened." He noted that tebuthiuron's manufacturer, U.S.-based Dow AgroSciences, had issued a statement in April warning, "Tebuthiuron is not labeled for use on any crops in Colombia, and it is our desire that the product not be used for coca eradication as well." Mr. Verano said: "This chemical could be very dangerous to the environment. We will not agree to test it until we are absolutely certain that the tests can be conducted safely. That is why we have not yet approved even the design for a test." A multidisciplinary national anti-narcotics council also has received design plans for such a test and has agreed to the concept of testing tebuthiuron, but the panel has not moved beyond the review stage, said Bernardo Reina, adviser to the council's director. "We have approved the concept of a test only. The design still must be approved," he said. "There has been no government approval for testing to begin." Copyright 1998 The Dallas Morning News
------------------------------------------------------------------- 11 Years For Waitress In Cocaine Plot (Britain's 'Daily Telegraph' Says A 24-Year-Old Woman Who Is Six Months Pregnant Was Given A Sentence Of 11 Years Yesterday While Her Older Brother Got Nine Years For Attempting To Smuggle An Unspecified Amount Of Cocaine Dissolved In Bottles Of Rum And Transported From New York Through Birmingham Airport) Date: Wed, 01 Jul 1998 21:07:49 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (email@example.com) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: UK: 11 Years For Waitress In Cocaine Plot Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Martin Cooke (email@example.com) Source: Daily Telegraph (UK) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/ Pubdate: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 Author: Maurice Weaver 11 YEARS FOR WAITRESS IN COCAINE PLOT A 24-year-old woman who is six months pregnant was jailed for 11 years yesterday and her older brother for nine for their part in a plan to smuggle cocaine through Birmingham airport in bottles of rum. Passing sentence at Wolverhampton Crown Court, Sir Andrew Watson, the Recorder, said the sentences "should warn other young people tempted to do what you did what the circumstances will be". The court was told that Jason Rudd, 28, from Perry Barr, acted as a dealer's "mule", flying to New York as a tourist to pick up the bottles of rum in which the spirit was blended with cocaine. His younger sister, Debbie, a waitress, from Birmingham, organised his activities.
------------------------------------------------------------------- 'Outstanding' Doctor Is Jailed For Giving LSD To Party Guests (Britain's 'Daily Telegraph' Notes The Three-Month Sentence And End Of The Medical Career Of A 25-Year-Old Doctor After An Off-Duty Police Constable Who Voluntarily Took The Drug At The Doctor's Party Had A Bad Trip And Turned Him In) From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: "MN" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: MN: UK: 'Outstanding' Doctor Is Jailed For Giving Lsd To Party Guests Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 17:56:56 -0500 Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Martin Cooke (email@example.com) Pubdate: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 Source: Daily Telegraph (UK) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/ Author: Richard Savill 'OUTSTANDING' DOCTOR IS JAILED FOR GIVING LSD TO PARTY GUESTS A YOUNG doctor convicted of supplying LSD to an off-duty police constable and other guests at a party was jailed for three months yesterday. Michael McKenzie, 25, described as a dedicated professional who was destined for an outstanding career, faces being struck off the medical register. Paisley sheriff court was told that the policeman, Alexander Robertson, 24, suffered such extreme hallucinations after he took a small "tab" of the drug that he dialled 999 and said he had taken an overdose. Mr Roberston claimed that he experienced nightmarish visions of his friends turning into werewolves and zombies. He was suspended from duty and resigned from Strathclyde Police in advance of the trial. Mr Robertson told the court that he had been given the drug by McKenzie, who was formerly at Glasgow Royal Maternity Hospital before becoming a senior house officer specialising in obstetrics and gynaecology at Sunderland Royal Hospital. The former policeman described in court how he left the party in the early hours of the morning and went wandering the streets. "I began to hear voices in my head and howling like in the film An American Werewolf in London," he said. Everyone "looked like zombies". He returned to the party where his hallucinations became so bad that he dialled 999 and reported that he had overdosed. Police went to the house in Paisley, and took Mr Robertson, who said he had gone to the party last July knowing there would be drugs available, to hospital. Mr Robertson told the court that the affair had "devastated my life and career." Mckenzie, of Hawkhead Road, Paisley, denied five charges of supplying the Class A drug to others. At the close of the Crown case, two of the charges were dropped. Finding McKenzie guilty, the sheriff, Neil Douglas, said that although it had been difficult to distinguish fact from fantasy as Mr Robertson recalled events, due to "the terrible consequences of what happened to him", he had no reason to disbelieve his account and concluded he was telling the truth. The court heard that partygoers had shared several cannabis "joints" and cans of beer before the police arrived and began their investigation. McKenzie, a Glasgow University graduate, claimed that he had taken controlled substances once in his life, when he went on holiday to Amsterdam in 1996. He denied that any drugs, especially LSD, had been in circulation on the night of the party. Edgar Prais, QC, defending, said McKenzie was highly regarded by senior staff at Sunderland Royal Hospital. He was a man of "outstanding ability and professional excellence". Appealing for leniency, Mr Prais said McKenzie had a lot to offer the community at large and that although he still maintained his innocence, the conviction had "shaken him to his boots and his life to its roots". He had resigned from his position at Sunderland. He said McKenzie, who came from a good, respectable family, had always been used to plaudits and had paid a heavy price. "He has learned as bitter a lesson as anyone possibly could," said Mr Prais.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Emergency Ward Stress Led To Theft Of Drugs (Britain's 'Daily Telegraph' Says Dr Simon Hetherington Admitted The Theft To Leicester Crown Court, But Apparently In Part Because Of Testimony That He Was Not Impaired, Received A Non-Prison Sanction) Date: Wed, 01 Jul 1998 21:31:03 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (email@example.com) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: UK: EMERGENCY WARD STRESS LED TO THEFT OF DRUGS Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Martin Cooke (email@example.com) Source: Daily Telegraph (UK) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/ Pubdate: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 EMERGENCY WARD STRESS LED TO THEFT OF DRUGS A JUNIOR doctor injected himself with hard drugs stolen from his hospital ward to help cope with the stress of his job, a court heard yesterday. Dr Simon Hetherington, 31, admitted the theft and possession of Class AA pethidine and diamorphine drugs last August. Leicester Crown Court heard that Hetherington - who worked on a high pressure emergency ward - was hooked on alcohol and hard drugs. But a former patient said the doctor had saved his life with dedication beyond the call of duty. The court was told that during the month after Hetherington started work on the acute admissions Ward 33 of Leicester Royal Infirmary, consumption of the painkiller pethidine had trebled and that of diamorphine - heroin -- doubled. Hetherington, of Leicester, took the drugs from the ward cabinet, forged the signature of a required witness and injected himself in the doctors' lavatories when he felt under stress, the court heard. He was found out after ward managers noticed an increase in drug use. Records showed that 107.5 mg of pethidine and 5,725 mg of diamorphine were not accounted for by patient charts. Dr Michael Powers, QC, defending, said: "A young doctor, intelligent, sensitive . . . for reasons which will never fully become apparent, finds himself stressed personally and professionally to the point that alcohol and then drugs are taken for relief in a crescendo." Dr Powers said Hetherington had been struggling to make a decision over whether to pursue further medical qualifications or find some "less pressured" position in medicine. He said: "It is difficult to envisage the type of stress doctors may face in these circumstances." Hetherington became highly dependent on opiate drugs, "rapidly increasing the number of injections he was able to take to gain relief". Dr Powers said Hetherington was now an in-patient at a rehabilitation centre in Maidenhead, Berks, being treated for his drink and drug problem. He still faced a GMC hearing and whether he would be seen as a sick doctor or a criminal doctor remained to be seen. He had also been sacked from the hospital and was currently unemployed. Dr Powers said to the judge: "You may feel that this is a sick doctor problem rather than a bad doctor problem." Dr John Lee, a retired lecturer, of Loughborough, said he was a patient on Ward 33 after being admitted close to death with severe internal bleeding in August last year, and had awoken to find Dr Hetherington caring for him. He said: "The word I would use to describe how he looked was knackered. But despite being obviously exhausted he was so dedicated that he stayed with me from 7pm until 2am. He had phone calls and refused to go to other things because his judgment was that he could save me and he did." Dr Lee said Hetherington returned the next morning to see how he was. He had come forward after reading a newspaper report of the case to give evidence on Hetherington's behalf, he said. Dr Lee said: "I realised that this unfortunate man was the one who had treated me. I felt guilt for the stress I had put him under. The fact that I am here is absolutely because of his dedication." Sentencing Hetherington, Mr Recorder Carl Gaskell said: "Normally doctors who commit a breach of trust by stealing drugs from a hospital go to prison." He said Hetherington had since made efforts to put his life in order. He said: "It seems to us that there would be little point apart from deterrence in sending you to prison". Hetherington was sentenced to 100 hours' community service on the four counts, to run concurrently and ordered to pay UKP1500 costs.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Heroin Overdose Risk Rises After Abstinence ('Reuters' Summarizes Tomorrow's Report In Britain's 'Lancet') Date: Fri, 03 Jul 1998 21:35:28 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service
From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Wire: Heroin Overdose Risk Rises After Abstinence Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family Pubdate: Friday, 26 June 1998 Source: Reuters HEROIN OVERDOSE RISK RISES AFTER ABSTINENCE NEW YORK, Jun 26 (Reuters) -- Heroin users appear to be more susceptible to overdose after periods of abstinence, according to a study in the June 27th issue of The Lancet. The findings come from analysis of drug levels in hair samples taken from people who died of heroin overdose. "Drugs can be detected in hair tissue weeks or months after intake," write the researchers. These findings suggest that heroin addicts who relapse after abstaining from the drug -- for instance, while in jail or treatment programs -- run a higher risk of overdosing, note the authors, a team of researchers led by Dr. Franco Tagliaro of the University of Verona in Italy. The findings also suggest that "weekend" and occasional users run a higher than average risk of overdosing on heroin, Tagliaro and colleagues warn. Tagliaro's team tested the morphine content of hair samples from 37 heroin addicts who died after overdosing on the drug. Morphine, the main active metabolite of heroin, is taken up into hair, among other ways, via surrounding blood vessels. Hair grows at a rate of about 1 centimeter (almost half an inch) per month, so morphine deposits in hair can serve as a record of drug use over time. Tagliaro and colleagues compared the morphine content of hair from the addicts who overdosed, with the morphine content of hair from 37 active heroin addicts, 37 former users who had been abstinent for several months, and 20 people who did not use the drug or other opiates. The researchers found that the morphine content of hair from the addicts who overdosed was similar to that of samples from the abstinent former addicts. They found an average 1.15 nanograms (ng) of morphine per milligram (mg) of hair in samples from the addicts who overdosed, compared with 6.07 ng/mg in samples from active addicts, and 0.74 ng/mg in samples from abstaining former addicts. Morphine levels in samples from people who did not use opiates were below detectable limits, the researchers report. The similarity between the morphine content of samples from the addicts who overdosed and that of samples from abstaining former addicts, suggests "that most individuals who died from heroin overdose had virtually abstained from heroin during the 4 months preceding death," the authors write. "Thus, the results of this hair analysis support a theory of high susceptibility to opioid overdose after periods of intentional or unintentional abstinence," they conclude. "This theory has been used to explain the high number of deaths among addicts recently released from jail or on completion of a detoxification programme." "The results of our study should indicate to the medical staff of detoxification programmes that there are risks inherent in relapse to heroin intake following abstinence from the drug," they add. "In particular, we point out the potential risk of 'opioid free' detoxification programmes." This study appears to be the first to use hair analysis to determine the drug use histories of people who have died from heroin overdose, the authors write. It is difficult to determine heroin use over time using blood tests, for example, because heroin usually disappears from the blood very quickly. Exactly why heroin addicts appear more susceptible to overdose after abstinence is unclear, Tagliaro and colleagues note. It may be that abstinence, or occasional use, leads to a lower heroin tolerance, and consequently, to "a corresponding decrease in the size of a fatal dose." SOURCE: The Lancet 1998;351:1923-1925. Copyright 1998 Reuters Limited.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Study Reveals High Rate Of Drug Use By School Pupils ('The Scotsman' Says A New Survey From The Forth Valley Health Board Shows That Prohibition Has Yielded 42 Per Cent Of 16-Year-Old Pupils In Central Scotland Using Illegal Drugs, And 49 Per Cent Drinking Alcohol In The Last Seven Days) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: "MN"
Subject: MN: UK: Study Reveals High Rate Of Drug Use By School Pupils Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 17:53:50 -0500 Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com Pubdate: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 Source: Scotsman (UK) Contact: Letters_ts@scotsman.com Website: http://www.scotsman.com/ Author: Derek Lambie STUDY REVEALS HIGH RATE OF DRUG USE BY SCHOOL PUPILS Almost one in two 16-year-old schoolchildren in central Scotland have tried illegal drugs, a survey revealed yesterday. The report, carried out by Forth Valley Health Board, showed that 42 per cent of fourth-year pupils in its area admitted taking drugs while 49 per cent had drunk alcohol in the last seven days. More alarming, the figures also revealed more than one in seven youngsters aged 11 had recently drunk alcohol. Overall, the survey of more than 2,600 pupils aged between 11 and sixteen in Falkirk, Stirling and Clackmannanshire highlighted a trend of increased smoking, and alcohol and drug misuse, within schools. Health promotion groups said the figures showed a worrying trend among pupils. The Young Persons Lifestyle Survey was compiled by health board using secondary pupils in first to fourth years. The children were questioned about smoking, alcohol and illegal drugs as well as relationships, exercise routines and diets. The findings of the survey were presented to the health board at a meeting chaired last week by Dr Rani Balendra, the consultant in public health medicine. The figures showed that 26 per cent of fourth-year pupils, aged 15 or 16, had smoked in the last seven days, while 3 per cent of first-year pupils also smoked. One in two 16-year-olds and 15 per cent of 11-year-olds admitted consuming alcohol within the last week. The situation was worse among first year pupils in Clackmannanshire, where 20 per cent of 11-year-olds revealed they were drinkers. About 40 per cent of fourth-year pupils in the Forth Valley area said they had taken drugs, and 3 per cent of first years also admitted misuse. Other statistics showed that one in four pupils had a boyfriend or girlfriend, and about 20 per cent of children were afraid of being bullied. Health officials hope to use the statistics to provide feedback and information to individual schools on the behaviour of their pupils. Health board officials said yesterday the figures would help them formulate future health strategies. A spokesperson said: "Risk-taking behaviour among young people continues to increase in Forth Valley according to the latest survey. "The findings raise questions about the most appropriate age group for targeting and sustaining health education messages and they will form an important part of future health board strategies. "They will be used in drawing up future strategies for young people." David Liddell, director of the Scottish Drugs Forum, blamed the rave culture for the number of school children who were taking drugs. He said: "It is quite concerning to see the number of youngsters taking drugs. It reflects a general increasing trend in the last few years. "There are many different reasons for these statistics. In recent years we have had a rise in the whole dance culture which has tempted young people into drugs. "It would be even more worrying if it turned out that the youngsters taking drugs were actually addicts or frequent users."
------------------------------------------------------------------- The Week Online With DRCNet, Issue Number 47 (The Drug Reform Coordination Network's Original News Summary For Activists, Including - The PRIDE Teen Survey; Drug Lords Attempted To Buy Russian Submarine; 'Coincidences' At Pain Patient March; And An Editorial By Adam J. Smith, 'The New L-Word') Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998 16:50:16 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: DRCNet (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: Multiple recipients of list (email@example.com) Subject: The Week Online with DRCNet, Issue No. 47 THE WEEK ONLINE WITH DRCNet, ISSUE No. 47 -- JUNE 26, 1998 -- PLEASE COPY AND DISTRIBUTE -- (To sign off this list, mailto: firstname.lastname@example.org with the line "signoff drc-natl" in the body of the message, or mailto:email@example.com for assistance. To subscribe to this list, visit http://www.drcnet.org/signup.html.) (This issue can be also be read on our web site at http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html.) Dear friends: As the 2nd quarter of 1998 roles to a close, we at DRCNet need to call out for your help once again. While new paying members have continued to sign up every week, we have not yet matched during this quarter the rate of growth that we had last quarter. We need 43 new paying members by the end of the month, Tuesday, to keep pace. The more of you vote for DRCNet by officially joining, the more our major funders will feel that their financial support is matched by your participation and enthusiasm. We are hopeful that the right level of support will enable us to grow our current 6,000 person subscription list by orders of magnitude, creating a potent political force capable of shifting the political tides in our favor. Will you cast a vote today for DRCNet and the movement? If you are already a DRCNet supporter, please consider renewing your support. We need your help too, for the following reason: While we have just about recovered from our fundraising shortfall at the end of last year (partly due to your generous support last quarter), our situation is still tenuous. We have enough money in the bank to last us perhaps another four weeks. This is a tremendous improvement, but still a tight enough situation to make it difficult for us to plan and take advantage of all the opportunities with which we are presented. Don't underestimate how quickly your $10, $20, $50 and $100 and others checks can add up to give the organization a tremendous boost. In the world of reform, your vote for DRCNet counts. To make a donation online with our encryption-secured web form, visit http://www.drcnet.org/drcreg.html, and make sure to follow the link to the encrypted version (https at the beginning of the URL). You can also use this form to prepare a printed statement with which to send in a check; this will help us process your information more quickly. Or, send your check or money order, $25 for full membership and $10 for "virtual" e-mail only membership to: DRCNet, 2000 P St., NW, Suite 615, Washington, DC 20036. Please note that contributions to DRCNet are not tax-deductible. If you're not sure whether you want to donate to DRCNet at this time, maybe the following selection of some of our recent media highlights will help you make up your mind. And then, of course, on to this week's news. * January, 1997: The Utne Reader lists DRCNet as a source of information on medical marijuana. * March 13, 1998: Adam Smith appears on the CBS National Radio Network, discussing parents talking to kids about drug use. * March 28, 1998: Adam Smith quoted in The Economist, discussing the plight of low level crack cocaine offenders and the criminal justice system. * April 18, 1998: David Borden's letter to the editor appears in The New York Times, replying to A.M. Rosenthal's attack on the drug policy reform movement. * April 20, 1998: NBC's Oklahoma affiliate airs clipping of Adam Smith's speech at the Will Foster rally. Also, Adam is interviewed by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation for a program coming out in September. * April 28, 1998: DRCNet web site appears on PBS Frontline's "Busted: America's War on Marijuana." DRCNet pops up three times throughout the one hour show, on computer screens in the homes of at least two different interviewees. Also, the program's web site at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/dope links to Adam's Reason article on the Foster case. * May, 1998: Infinity Press in Oklahoma runs "The Broken Heartland: The Will Foster Story," describing Adam Smith's speech at the Will Foster rally as well as the Foster case itself. * Spring, 1998: ACLU Member Newsletter includes DRCNet in a short list of reform web sites. * June, 1998: Mike Gray's "Drug Crazy" is released by Random House. David Borden, DRCNet board member Cliff Schaffer, and DRCNet itself are prominently featured on pages 203-204 and throughout the appendix of Internet resources. * June/July, 1998: Eye Magazine features DRCNet in its "Fringe Notes" section. * June 29, 1998: WAMU 88.5 FM, the largest Washington, DC- area National Public Radio affiliate, to run a 2 1/2 minute commentary by David Borden, supporting heroin maintenance, at 7:06 and 9:06 AM. * July, 1998: High Times runs Adam Smith's article, "Activism Online: The Revolution Will Be Wired." Also coming up: We are planning to release a special new section of our web site next month, that we are hoping will be something of a sensation and get some press -- one notable media outlet has already agreed to cover the story. We can't tell you what it is yet, but let's just say that the other side won't like it. And more exciting web site updates will follow shortly after that. Thank you for being a part of DRCNet. Together we will change the world. David Borden Executive Director *** TABLE OF CONTENTS 1. German Police Call for an End to the Drug War http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html#germany 2. PRIDE Teen Survey http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html#pride 3. U.S. Pressures Colombia to Spray Dangerous Herbicide in Eradication Efforts http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html#herbicide 4. Pastrana Elected President of Colombia http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html#pastrana 5. California Legislature to Debate Measure Providing Medical Marijuana Distribution By Local Communities http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html#distribution 6. Professor Julian Heicklen in Jail http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html#heicklen 7. FEDS: Drug Lords Attempted to Buy Russian Submarine http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html#submarine 8. First Amendment Rights of Alternative Media Threatened in Austin (TX) http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html#gnn 9. "Coincidences" at Pain Patient Rally http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html#coincidences 10. EDITORIAL: The New "L-Word" http://www.drcnet.org/wol/47.html#l-world *** 1. German Police Call for an End to the Drug War Twelve German Police Chiefs joined medical experts and politicians last week (6/16) in calling for an end to the drug war, while a survey of members of Parliament showed support for a new direction on drug policy across the political spectrum. Dr. Ingo Flenker, a member of the board of the Federal Chamber of Doctors, told The Guardian (UK) on 6/17, "The Social Democrats, Greens, and Liberal Free Democrats have long been signaling that they would welcome a change in drugs policy." Gerhard Schroeder, a Social Democrat, is the heavy favorite to win the Chancellor's seat in September's national elections. Dierk Schitzler, Bonn's Police Commissioner, told the gathering, "Even if we had four times as many police officers, we could not solve the drug problem. We would only push the prices up and the dealers will make even bigger profits. Humanity dictates that we should help addicts, who are sick people." The cities of Frankfurt, Cologne, Karslruhe, and Hanover have applied for heroin trials following the Swiss model. "This is almost like a breaking of dams," was the interpretation of Richard Edgeton, the federal secretary of the Germany AIDS-Hilfe regarding the spirit of drug policy reform flowing throughout the nation. *** 2. PRIDE's Numbers - Rob Stewart, Drug Policy Foundation On Thursday, June 18, the nonprofit Parents' Resource Institute for Drug Education (PRIDE, www.prideusa.org) released its annual, end-of-the-school-year surveys of adolescent drug use and gun possession. PRIDE president Thomas Gleaton, top White House drug advisor Barry McCaffrey, and senators Paul Coverdell (R-GA), Charles Grassley (R-IA), and Joe Biden (D-DE) took part in the Capitol Hill press conference. The bipartisan group announced that the students overall reported a decrease in illegal drug use, including alcohol and nicotine. But the 11th PRIDE survey found that some of the older students, in particular 12th graders, reported slight but statistically significant increases for cigarettes, cocaine, uppers and downers, and designer drugs (PRIDE's terms). The survey also shows that illegal drug use is less likely to be correlated with school activities, good grades, parental involvement and discipline, and "religiosity." About 30.1 percent of students said that their parents talked with them "often" or "a lot" about drugs. PRIDE's data reveal that, although that number is up slightly over the previous two school years, it is somewhat lower than the 1992-93 (36.5%), 1993-94 (36.2%), and 1994-95 (33.8%) school years -- when teen drug use was on the rise. Gleaton's statement about the drug use survey was guardedly optimistic. He attributed the decline in part to the 1996 presidential campaign debates and parental involvement. Gleaton said in a statement, "We have made remarkable progress in the past two years, but to return to drug use levels of 1990, we would have to cut today's usage in half." Gleaton summarized his warning for USA Today (June 19, p. 6A) as follows: "When drug use drops out of view of the American people, that allows the bad guys to flourish again." But, according to the White House's Summer Pulse Check, marijuana use among hard-core users and marginal populations is widespread in the surveyed regions. The report states that "the majority of sources consulted .. report an increase in young users of marijuana." PRIDE's survey of students and guns found that the percentage of students reporting that they carried guns with them to school had dropped 36 percent over the last five years -- to 3.8 percent for the 1997-1998 school year from 6 percent during the 1993-1994 school year. PRIDE found that the approximately 973,000 students who carried guns to school last year were much more likely to use illegal drugs on a monthly basis than non-gun-toting students (64 percent v. 15 percent) and on an annual basis (75 percent v. 27 percent). The gun survey adds to the dark reputation of drugs. "With this volatile mixture of guns, bad attitudes, and drugs," Gleaton said, "it only takes one student to create a national nightmare like Jonesboro, Arkansas, or Springfield, Oregon." Students gunned down fellow students in both towns this year. The PRIDE survey leaves the association of guns and drugs alone. There is no explanation about the black market's influence nor a suggestion that kids who break one set of laws are less inclined to be stopped by other laws banning a particular behavior. (Rob Stewart is director of communications for the Drug Policy Foundation, and editor of DPF's Drug Policy Letter. You can find them on the web at http://www.dpf.org.) *** 3. U.S. Pressures Colombia to Spray Dangerous Herbicide in Eradication Efforts Dow Chemical, the makers of Tebuthiuron, warns that the herbicide should only be used "carefully and in controlled situations" and that "it can be very risky in situations where terrain has slopes, rainfall is significant, desirable plants are nearby and application is made under less than ideal circumstances." But that is exactly what the U.S. government has pressured Colombia to agree to do. The warning quoted above, conditions under which Tebuthiuron, marketed under the name Spike 20-P, should not be used, essentially describes the terrain in which coca is grown. American officials have long lobbied for the use of Tebuthiuron because it comes in pellet, rather than spray form, and can be dropped by high-flying planes, thus reducing the risk to pilots, if not to the people on the ground below. But Dow AgroSciences, a subsidiary of Dow Chemical, formerly makers of the defoliant Agent Orange, released a statement saying "Tebuthiuron is not labeled for any use on any crops in Colombia, and it is our desire that the product not be used for coca eradication as well." But Dow's reluctance matters little. Their patent on the herbicide has run out, allowing other companies to manufacture it. No one knows what the long-term effects of Tebuthiuron are in groundwater or on farmland, and critics, including Colombia's environmental minister, Eduardo Verano, question whether such risks are worth taking with the lives of his countrymen. "We need to reconsider the benefits of the chemical war" he told the New York Times. "The more you fumigate, the more the farmers plant. If you fumigate one hectare, they'll grow coca on two more. How else do you explain the figures?" The plan, which was drawn up by the State Department's acting assistant Secretary of State for international narcotics and law enforcement affairs, calls for the Colombian military to drop the defoliant, and then only in the southern, rebel-controlled part of the country. The Colombian military, long acknowledged as one of the world's leading abusers of human rights, and more recently as flouting civilian control by the Colombian government, has been engaged in a 35 year-old conflict with rebel guerrillas in the region. It is a war which they have recently admitted they cannot win. *** 4. Pastrana Elected President of Colombia In a wave of anti-corruption sentiment, Conservative opposition candidate Andres Pastrana was elected President of Colombia over Liberal Horacio Serpa. Serpa, the former Interior Minister under outgoing President Ernesto Samper, was Samper's hand-picked successor. Serpa was an ardent defender of Samper in the wake of a scandal in which he was accused of taking over $6 million in campaign contributions from the Cali cartel during his successful race against Pastrana in 1994. The reverberations of that scandal led to the arrest and conviction of over 30 government officials and members of Congress. Samper was eventually absolved of wrongdoing by the congress, in what was widely perceived as a whitewash. Pastrana's election also paves the way for meaningful negotiations between the government and the rebels who control nearly 50% of the country. Late in the campaign, Pastrana met with rebel leaders, and has repeatedly said that a peaceful, negotiated solution is essential to Colombia's future. Such talk would seem to fly in the face of a burgeoning American policy towards Colombia in which an executive order banning the sale of high-tech weapons to the region has been lifted and the Republican-controlled Congress has put pressure on the Clinton Administration to send more weapons and military aid to Colombia. Lisa Haugaard of the Latin America Working Group told The Week Online, "Pastrana's statements have been very positive with regard to peace and negotiations, and it's very important that U.S. policy back those efforts. There is certainly a window of opportunity with the momentum from the election. And while there have been previous efforts at peace, there are several factors that indicate that now may be a better time. The violence has been greater, people are tired, and there is a broader mobilization than there has been in the past. "But U.S. policy doesn't seem geared toward encouraging peace. There are a number of American politicians, led by Senator Benjamin Gilman (R-NY), who are very narrowly focused on sending arms to fight the drug war. As a matter of fact, just today (6/26) the approval went through for the $36 million in helicopters. Not the Blackhawk helicopters that Gilman seemed so intent on providing, but upgraded Hueys." (See http://www.drcnet.org/wol/44.html#copters.) "The violence that is taking place in Colombia is appalling. The paramilitaries, in particular, are out of control, and every time that the U.S. tries to do something to insure that aid does not go into the hands of human rights abusers, it goes awry. It's just impossible to draw those kinds of lines down there. It will be interesting to see what kind of a role the U.S. plays in any peace efforts. Our best hope is that there is a debate going on within the Clinton administration, and that those who would like to foster peace efforts can win out over those who insist on further arming the conflict." *** 5. California Legislature to Debate Measure Providing Medical Marijuana Distribution By Local Communities (reprinted from the NORML Weekly News, http://www.norml.org) June 25, 1998, Sacramento, CA: The California Assembly will debate legislation next week that authorizes local governments to establish medical marijuana distribution programs. Senate Bill 1887, recently amended by sponsor John Vasconcellos (D-Santa Clara), states that "a city ... or county may distribute marijuana to persons in medical need." The measure makes use of an untested provision in the federal Controlled Substances Act that immunizes local officials who comply with local drug laws from federal sanctions. Supporters of the legislation anticipate this provision to be tested in federal court. California NORML Coordinator Dale Gieringer praised the intent of S.B. 1887 and noted that it closely corresponds to the approach proposed by the organization in May. "Senator Vasconcellos is to be congratulated for offering a comprehensive, realistic solution to the short-term medical marijuana distribution problem," he said. The bill also argues for federal rescheduling of the drug. "There is widespread consensus among physicians, law enforcement, patients, providers and other stakeholders that the most effective solution [to the question of medical marijuana distribution] is for the federal government to reschedule marijuana so that it can be prescribed under the same strict protocols as morphine and cocaine," the bill reads. The Assembly Health Committee will hear S.B. 1887 on Tuesday. *** 6. Professor Julian Heicklen in Jail - Alex Morgan Professor Julian Heicklen is in the Centre County Prison in Bellefonte, PA, following his arrest for smoking a joint during a demonstration outside the county court house last Monday (6/22). Heicklen, who has been holding weekly "Smoke Outs" at the Penn State University Main Gate in State College since January, moved his protest to the county seat on June 7 when he made a speech at the county prison door before serving a 48 hour sentence for contempt of court. The contempt sentence was imposed during a May 6 hearing on his previous arrests. Heicklen had objected to Magistrate Lunsford's questioning of prosecution witnesses and also the court's decision to combine his February 12, March 19, March 26 and April 2 arrests into one case. The objection was overruled. Heicklen declined to cross examine the police officers or present any evidence, but he asked to read a statement into the record. Magistrate Lunsford denied the request, saying Heicklen was only going to repeat the statement he made during his hearing for the February arrest. Heicklen asked him how he knew that and then began his statement anyway. Lunsford ordered Heicklen to stop and threatened him with a contempt citation. Heicklen finished his statement, and Lunsford imposed the 48 hour sentence for contempt. On June 7, just prior to entering the county prison, Heicklen read a long statement summarizing his struggle with the court system and the pretrial motions he had filed with the court. "... I made a short statement of about one minute in length requesting indictment by a grand jury ... Magistrate Lunsford objected to me saying anything at all on my own behalf and found me in contempt of court. I had thirty days to appeal the contempt citation. I could not do so in good conscience because I am in contempt of this court, in absolute and utter contempt. The Centre County Court is not a court of law; it is a court of inquisition." The full statement, entitled "SPEECH AT THE PRISON DOOR," can be found at http://www.personal.psu.edu/jph13, Prof. Heicklen's web site. Heicklen is still in jail waiting to see if attorney Joseph Devecka can get his bail reduced to $500.00 and also get the court to drop the bail requirement that he refrain from committing further crimes. Meanwhile, he is going ahead with plans to lead a major protest at Penn State's Main Gate during the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts. It will span 30 hours over four days, with thirty different speakers for an hour each. For a complete list of speakers check Heicklen's web site listed above. To make a donation to Professor Heicklen's campaign, contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Carla Moquin at email@example.com. *** 7. FEDS: Drug Lords Attempted to Buy Russian Submarine The Los Angeles Times reports this week (6/21) that Ludwig Fainberg, owner of two Miami nightclubs, was acting as a broker between Russian organized crime figures and South American drug traffickers. The deals that Fainberg allegedly attempted to put together would have netted the drug organizations a Soviet Tango class submarine to be used to ship cocaine into the U.S. Fainberg went so far as to arrange a meeting with a retired Russian naval officer and a tour of a secret Russian navy base for the purpose of selecting the sub. The Times reports that U.S. authorities say the case is illustrative of the forming alliances between powerful organized crime organizations in Russia and South American drug traffickers. This partnership would combine access to vast Cold War military assets with the drug trade that has all but inundated the U.S. despite the best efforts of prohibitionists. *** 8. First Amendment Rights of Alternative Media Threatened in Austin, Texas While the following is not directly drug policy related, we believe it is important, especially to those of us who rely, to some extent, on alternative media for important information (like The Week Online). Last weekend, the Grassroots News Network held its first annual "Grassroots News and Media Conference & Culture Jam in Austin, Texas" GNN is "a coalition of 31 community oriented groups and radio stations from around the world working together to collectively create good quality news programming via the A-infos Radio Project Internet site." On Sunday evening after the conference, members of the Austin Police Dept. in an APD police car took photographs of the house of GNN organizer Paul Odekirk, which was witnessed by Odekirk and several other organizers. According to Odekirk, "the curtain was half way open and we saw a big flash and a police car was out front. They were taking pictures of my house. I walked out front and the police were standing in the street taking my picture and pictures of the house. Then they got into their car and drove off." The spectre of police spying on activists is evocative of the FBI's infamous COINTELPRO program, in which government operative infiltrated anti-Vietnam war groups and other political organizations. Surveillance of activists by police can be a method of intimidation used by authorities to squelch activism (and hence democracy). Surveillance of government, on the other hand, is good for democracy. The following e-mail addresses of Austin city officials and other personnel have been provided, so that interested parties can let the city know they are being watched over the Internet. Ask the city to investigate possible spying by police and whether it was an appropriate enforcement activity. Mayor Kirk Watson Kirk.Watson@ci.austin.tx.us Chief of Staff Jill.George@ci.austin.tx.us Mayor Pro Tem, Gus Garcia Gus.Garcia@ci.austin.tx.us Council Assistant Paul.Saldana@ci.austin.tx.us Council Member Place 1 Daryl.Slusher@ci.austin.tx.us Council Assistant Ramona.Perrault@ci.austin.tx.us Council Member Place 3 Jackie.Goodman@ci.austin.tx.us Council Assistant Susan.Sheffield@ci.austin.tx.us Council Member Place 4 Beverly.Griffith@ci.austin.tx.us Council Assistant John.Gilvar@ci.austin.tx.us Council Member Place 5 William.Spelman@ci.austin.tx.us Council Assistant Kristen.Vassallo@ci.austin.tx.us Council Member Place 6 Willie.Lewis@ci.austin.tx.us Council Assistant Dwight.Burns@ci.austin.tx.us Find the Grassroots News Network online at http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Studio/1082. *** 9. "Coincidences" at Pain Patient March Last week, we reported that pain patients had rallied at the U.S. Capitol to call for adequate pain medication for all who need it and to protest the state medical boards and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for interfering with the objective. (See our story at http://www.drcnet.org/wol/46.html#painmarch.) Skip Baker, President of the American Society for Action on Pain (ASAP), has reported that while he and other activists were setting up for the event, three women whom he didn't recognize approached him and asked for t-shirts. Skip pointed them to a suitcase that held the shirts. Another activist asked them if they had paid for the shirts, and one of them responded that "David Baker said they could have them." They proceeded to remove four or five ASAP t-shirts. Skip was stunned to hear this, because while his real name is in fact David, virtually no one knows this, and the only way to find it out is to examine certain official documents. (DRCNet's David Borden has known Skip Baker for three years, and had no idea until last week that his real name was anything other than Skip.) Though Skip didn't recognize the women, another attendee was reminded of three female DEA agents who attended when patients rallied in support of Dr. William Hurwitz at the Virginia medical board's hearings two years before (http://www.drcnet.org/guide10-96/pain.html). Also, one of the pain physicians who was to receive an award at the rally had his license to prescribe controlled substances revoked by the DEA and was too upset to attend. His offense -- failure to file a change of address form. The doctor had moved several months before, but the DEA only took action against him one week before the rally. It should be stressed here that there is no hard evidence that these coincidences were anything other than coincidences -- but they do seem fairly suggestive. (Visit ASAP at http://www.actiononpain.org) *** 10. EDITORIAL: The "L-Word" As the debate over the efficacy of the Drug War moves toward center stage in the political arena in the United States, the primary tactic of the prohibitionists has become clear. Anyone who espouses any measure of drug policy reform, no matter if it's medical marijuana, syringe exchange, chronic pain control, mandatory minimum sentence reform, opiate maintenance, or even industrial hemp, is being labeled by prohibitionists, from Drug Czar Barry McCaffrey to Senator Joe Biden, as a "legalizer." It is the new "L-word," and the prohibitionists hope that it will do for them what the old "L-word" did for Republican candidates beginning in the 1980's, tar their opponents as extremists while simultaneously forcing them to disavow their own beliefs. This strategy, like virtually every political strategy adopted in the last days of the twentieth-century, is based not upon guesswork, but upon polling. Polls show that when the American people are asked the question "should the United states legalize all drugs?" the majority of respondents will answer "no". In fact, depending on the poll, a negative answer will be given by between 75 and 85% of those questioned. There are several problems with these numbers, however. First and foremost is that there is no single definition of "legalization". Does it mean that methamphetamine will be sold out of corner stores? No one is advocating that, but to many people, that is the image conjured up by the question. A second and related problem is that up until now, the American people have had virtually no exposure to the serious and common-sense arguments against prohibition. Most people believe that advocates of "legalization" are exactly what the drug warriors portray them as, drug using extremists who would unleash a torrent of dangerous substances onto society with no thought to the consequences. But judging from the respected names who have recently come out to publicly question the status quo, that is most certainly not true either. But in systematically hurling the new "L-word" at any and all reformers in tones reminiscent of those used in conjunction with other quasi-epithets such as "racist" or "communist," or "pervert", the prohibitionists are achieving, perhaps intentionally, an even more important victory: they are tempting, even forcing reformers to refute the label as a perceived precondition of effectively advocating their position. "I am not a legalizer." Once that has been accomplished, reformers are left backpedaling, rather than attacking. And rather than launching a full- scale assault on the inherently flawed and globally disastrous policy of Prohibition, reformers are left arguing for harm-reduction in one form or another, essentially surrendering to the notion that of course, criminal prohibition is the right thing to do, if only you'd let us make it a bit more humane in this or that specific area. The sound of reformers backing away from the air-tight arguments against prohibition must be music to drug warriors' ears. There is no defense, historically or logically, for prohibition. It simply does not work. And worse, it invariably corrupts, it systematically infringes on individual liberties, it grossly enriches and empowers criminal enterprises, and it insures that we, as a society, have no control over who is selling what to whom. Especially with regard to children. But to acknowledge, explicitly or otherwise, that prohibition is indeed the right system, and that we are only advocating reforms to its implementation, puts logic, or at least the appearance of logic, back into the drug warriors' court. If we agree that drugs should remain illegal (prohibited) then it is rational, or so it would seem, to argue against reforms -- syringe exchange, sentencing reform, low-priority enforcement -- which would weaken that system. Prohibition, were it possible that it could succeed, would certainly require strict enforcement. Especially if are talking about the theoretical (under that system) elimination of access to drugs by children. As reformers, we must not fall into this trap. Prohibition does not, cannot, will not work. Oh, it works just fine if your goals are to consolidate power in the hands of the state, control minority populations by imprisoning an enormous percentage of their young males, funnel wealth to a privileged few in the defense, corrections, pharmaceutical and other industries, use it as an excuse to infringe on the sovereignty of poorer nations, justify enormous government expenditures on law enforcement and the military, insure a steady source of untraceable cash for secret operations or drastically increase the ability of governments at all levels to seize cash and property from citizens without due process. But in the areas that prohibition is claimed to address, preserving communities, reducing crime and protecting children, it is -- and by the ironclad laws of economics will always be -- an utter and disastrous failure. This is the argument that must be made. It is an argument for which there is no answer, and one which the prohibitionists are desperate to avoid. It has been the prohibitionists' refusal to publicly debate the facts, their unwillingness to defend their system in any forum in which there is articulate opposition, that has delayed their day of reckoning for so long in the first place. It is only now, when the reform movement, through the power of prominent supporters, the work of dedicated activists, and yes, the advent of electronic communications, has reached the point that it can no longer be ignored, that they are being forced to come out in public, in the mainstream media, and defend themselves and their system. The fascinating corollary to the numbers which say that 75- 85% of the American people "oppose legalization" is that nearly the same number believe that the Drug War is not working. And keeping in mind that our current president was elected by just 22% of eligible voters, surely, given the national stage which has so recently become open to us we can activate those who already understand the issue, and educate a small percentage of those who see the current failure but are nevertheless afraid of the amorphous "L- word." For the first time in the 80-year history of Drug Prohibition, those of us who advocate reform are being called upon to explain to the American people why the prohibitionist system is antithetical to the results they seek. And it is up to us to do just that. "Are you a legalizer"? "Well, it's funny, there are almost as many different visions of a sane drug policy as there are reasons to get rid of the one we have. In truth, I'm an anti- prohibitionist, and I'll tell you why..." Adam J. Smith Associate Director *** DRCNet needs your support! 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