------------------------------------------------------------------- Drug defender to plead guilty (The News Tribune in Tacoma, Washington, notes Gideon Israel, a marijuana law reform advocate who has been holding four public gatherings at Rainbow Valley, his 42-acre property, every year for more than a decade, will plead guilty today to conspiracy to deliver marijuana and manufacture marijuana and possession with intent to deliver LSD and psilocybin mushrooms. He agreed to sell his property south of Littlerock, give half the proceeds to the Thurston County Narcotics Task Force, and promised not to hold outdoor festivals in Thurston County for 10 years.) From: "Bob Owen @ WHEN, Olympia" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: "-Hemp Talk" (email@example.com) Subject: HT: Gideon Israel to plead guilty Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 15:01:37 -0700 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Drug defender to plead guilty Karen Hucks; The News Tribune Marijuana advocate Gideon Israel will plead guilty today to three crimes, agree to sell his property south of Littlerock and promise not to have outdoor festivals in Thurston County for 10 years, his attorney said. In exchange, Thurston County prosecutors will drop more serious charges against him. Seattle attorney Jeff Steinborn said Israel, who pleaded not guilty to 12 charges late last year, now will plead guilty to: * A combined charge of conspiracy to deliver marijuana and manufacture marijuana and possession with intent to deliver LSD and psilocybin mushrooms. * Distribution and delivery of marijuana. * And possession with intent to deliver marijuana. He could serve up to one year in jail, Steinborn said. The Thurston County Narcotics Task Force will get half the net profit from the sale of Rainbow Valley, Israel's 42-acre property on the Black River. The task force uses money from confiscations for drug enforcement. Israel has been holding four warm-weather celebrations each year for more than a decade. The weekend concerts and campouts often drew 2,000 people from as far as Vancouver, B.C., and northern California. Critics called them loud "drugfests." But Israel called the concerts opportunities for the "peace-love minority group" to plan a counterattack on the "war on drugs," to make friends and to commune. He has said that legalization of marijuana could cure most of society's ills. Thurston County officials have battled Israel for more than a decade over everything from drug use at his festivals to unpermitted buildings on his land. Police raided Israel's property last November and charged him with leading an organized crime ring, money-laundering and various drug offenses. Officials brought in King County experts, including deputy prosecuting attorney Tami Perdue, to investigate and try the complex case. It was the culmination of a two-year investigation, which got a boost when one of Israel's followers offered to be an informant. During that investigation, undercover officers attended numerous gatherings at Rainbow Valley. They purchased marijuana, hallucinogenic mushrooms and LSD, authorities from the Thurston County Narcotics Task Force said. Probable cause documents filed in Thurston County Superior Court said Israel was making as much as $75,000 at some of those celebrations from admissions fees and his slice of drug deals. He set up a marijuana growing and selling operation and used a land trust to launder the money, the document contends. Steinborn said he never took the money-laundering and racketeering charges seriously. But "it was effective in bullying us into taking a deal," he said. "The stakes are too high - five years in prison for a guy who might not live more than a year." He wouldn't detail Israel's illnesses. "I expected to win (the case) because of the incredibly outrageous conduct on the part of the government," Steinborn said. "But he's not a healthy man and the downside was a minimum of five years in prison and the loss of everything. It was simply not an acceptable risk." Israel supported himself from the entry fees to his gatherings, and now he won't have a livelihood, Steinborn said. Steinborn said marijuana is a sacrament for Israel, and he sold it to the informant because he believed the man was a friend who wanted to partake in the sacrament. He will plead guilty and be sentenced at 1:30 p.m. today by Thurston County Superior Court Judge Richard Hicks. Steinborn will ask that Israel serve no time while prosecutors will ask Hicks to impose the maximum one-year term, Steinborn said. Israel often has said that he and his followers are being persecuted just as the Nazis attacked the Jews. But Thursday he would make only one comment: "Just ask everybody to pray and send their positive energy tomorrow at 1:30 to myself and all my friends and to the judge. And I love everybody." Staff writer Karen Hucks covers Thurston County. Reach her at 1-800-388-8742, Ext. 8660 or by e-mail at email@example.com *** Date: Fri, 09 Oct 1998 20:05:22 -0400 From: Don Wirtshafter (firstname.lastname@example.org) Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Ohio Hempery 1-800-BUY-HEMP To: "Bob Owen @ WHEN, Olympia" (firstname.lastname@example.org) CC: -Hemp Talk (email@example.com) Subject: Re: HT: Gideon Israel to plead guilty Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks Bob for posting the shitty news on Gideon Israel. I hate this situation. I tried like hell to find an alternative that would not go this direction. I spent hours talking to Gideon and his attorney. I hate plea bargains, especially when you have a defendant willing to go to the mat to prove his rights. Gideon in the end lost his will and ability to fight. This plea "bargain" became the only plausible result. I had to reverse my advocacy and tell Gideon I would back him if he decided to go forward with this "deal". I know Gideon is not a criminal. The corrupt system that would put a full time narc on him for two years and then only find little penny-ante crimes is the criminal here. The fact that this narc came into Gideon's life as the trusted paralegal of Gideon's former attorney should be investigated. The fact that the narc has a long criminal record should have disqualified him and put those whom he worked with in prison. In the end, I can only be sad. I loved Rainbow Valley for what it was, a living example of another way for us to get along together. As a dedicated member of the Peace and Love Tribe I can, in the end, only say thank you to Gideon and the others that made Rainbow Valley possible. I will miss it. To the Thurston County officials who stole this land, I say that it will bury you. Now, who wants to chip in to buy this fine real estate when these power mongers put it up for auction? Don Wirtshafter
------------------------------------------------------------------- Scientist dissects wily ways of cigarettes (A Seattle Times account of Washington state's $2.2 billion lawsuit against the tobacco industry for conspiring to violate antitrust and consumer-protection laws, focuses on the testimony of Jack Henningfield, a specialist in nicotine addiction and dependence, who suggested the industry used complex and devious tricks to encourage smokers to remain smokers.) From: "Bob Owen @ WHEN, Olympia" (email@example.com) To: "-News" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: Scientist dissects wily ways of cigarettes Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 14:58:36 -0700 Sender: email@example.com Copyright (c) 1998 The Seattle Times Company Posted at 02:33 a.m. PDT; Friday, October 9, 1998 Scientist dissects wily ways of cigarettes by Matthew Ebnet Seattle Times staff reporter The scientist, with the practiced vernacular of a man who has spent his life in books and sterile laboratories, stood up, adjusted his suit and told the jury how he spent his morning digging through a wet and dirty ashtray. The scientist had returned from his trip outside the King County Courthouse with a bounty of tobacco remnants and butts, the dirty and the half-smoked, the crushed and the twisted, the butts marked with a blur of red lipstick. Using a special viewing machine, set up in the courtroom where Washington is suing the tobacco industry, Jack Henningfield dissected the cigarettes, gutting them, poking at their yellow stains, their strange perforations, and said they illustrate how complex and devious the tobacco industry can be as it tries, by using "dose control," to trick smokers into remaining smokers. Steve Berman, a lawyer for Washington state, called the perforated, or "light," cigarettes, which include a ring of tiny holes around the filter, a "drug-delivering device" that are just as dangerous as regular cigarettes. Henningfield's testimony is part of a lawsuit in which the state accuses the tobacco industry of conspiring to violate antitrust and consumer-protection laws. It also accuses Big Tobacco of hiding health research, not telling people about the manipulation of cigarette nicotine levels and threatening to retaliate against smaller companies that tried to sell "safer" cigarettes. The state is looking for $2.2 billion in state Medicaid and other insurance costs and penalties for violations of the state Consumer Protection Act, which could be a $2,000 penalty for each violation, which includes the sale of every pack of cigarettes in Washington since the 1950s. More than three dozen other states have lawsuits pending against the industry. Four states - Florida, Texas, Mississippi and Minnesota - reached settlements for a combined $36.8 billion. None of the cases has made it to a jury verdict. Henningfield is vice president of a consulting firm in Bethesda, Md., and specializes in nicotine addiction and dependence. Henningfield said that, of the cigarettes he collected, butts ringed with lipstick are the best examples of the tobacco industry's nicotine manipulation. He said lipstick can show that smokers, smoking normally, plug the special perforations on cigarettes with their lips, allowing more tar, nicotine and bad chemicals into their lungs. Cigarette companies, he said, cut perforations in their butts because it would provide some clean air for the smoker; the companies sold them as "lights" or "low tar" cigarettes. But while those cigarettes fared well in laboratory tests when tested with a smoking machine, Henningfield said, the cigarettes fail in the real world. "So it defeats the system," he said. But that's the way the industry intended it, Henningfield said. "This is part of dose control." Henningfield also gave other examples of what he called Big Tobacco's manipulation of nicotine: -- Cigarettes are dosed with accelerants, which look like tiny rings of gunpowder around the shaft, so that they burn faster, and apparently, make people smoke more. -- Companies made filters that appeared to have gaps in them that would allow more air into smokers' lungs and reduce the amount of tar and nicotine they inhaled. But, outside of a laboratory they also fail, Henningfield said, because moisture from smokers' lips causes the filter to expand and fill the gaps, therefore delivering more tar and nicotine. Beyond that, he said, even if the perforations or the filters worked properly, smokers compensate for a lack of nicotine by smoking more, perhaps smoking 1 1/2 packs of "lights" instead of only one of regulars. This is the second week of testimony. Earlier, Dr. David Burns, a pulmonary-medicine specialist and professor at the University of California's medical school at San Diego, testified that the tobacco industry's private documents show it was aware of the health risks of smoking even while they insisted publicly there wasn't proof that smoking caused lung cancer and other maladies. Settlement talks in New York between tobacco companies and the state are on hold until late October. Both sides would prefer to settle. Washington state Attorney General Christine Gregorie has said a settlement - which, like a trial, also would have implications for other states because those states could sign on to the agreement - would enable states to bargain for concessions a jury cannot demand, such as limits on advertising tactics. The tobacco industry wants a settlement because it would mean they could know for certain what their costs would be. They then could bargain for things such as immunity from other lawsuits, something a jury also could not give them. Matthew Ebnet's phone message number is 206-515-5698. His e-mail address is: firstname.lastname@example.org
------------------------------------------------------------------- Snuff bottles are intricate works of art (The Seattle Times reviews an exhibit of more than 260 snuff bottles from 17th- and 18th-century China, used by the wealthy to hold a fine mixture of powdered tobacco and herbs.) From: "Bob Owen @ WHEN, Olympia" (email@example.com) To: "-Hemp Talk" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: HT: Snuff bottles are intricate works of art Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 14:59:28 -0700 Sender: email@example.com Copyright (c) 1998 The Seattle Times Company Posted at 08:04 a.m. PDT; Friday, October 9, 1998 Snuff bottles are intricate works of art by Lily Eng Northwest Weekend editor The snuff bottles reach barely three inches in height, and are made of porcelain, jade, ivory and other precious material. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the wealthy in China used the bottles to hold a fine mixture of powdered tobacco and herbs. Craftsmen painstakingly carved out miniature Buddhas and etched elaborate landscapes onto the surface of the bottles, which were small enough to carry discreetly in the hand. The work is astonishingly rich and colorful. Even the most ordinary snuff bottle in the collection featured at Ming's Asian Gallery in Old Belleveue is a tiny work of art. There are elegant portraits of the gentry and thumbnail carvings of flowers and mythical creatures. More than 260 snuff bottles will be displayed at Ming's Asian Gallery, 10217 Main St., Bellevue, until Nov. 8. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. For more information, call 425-462-4008.
------------------------------------------------------------------- 1998 Washington State Hemp Voter's Guide Update (The Washington Hemp Education Network has added additional candidate responses and more to its online guide.) Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 20:41:26 -0700 (PDT) From: Ben (firstname.lastname@example.org) Reply-To: Ben (email@example.com) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: HT: 1998 Washington State Hemp Voter's Guide Update Sender: email@example.com We updated the online version of the 1998 Washington State Hemp Voter's Guide today. Here's a few of the improvements: * Updated results: 146 total candidate responses with breakdowns for industrial hemp, medical marijuana and adult personal use. * Candidates who made it to the General Election are in bold with an asterisk after their name. * Links to Primary results for each district so you can quickly guage a certain candidates chances while browsing the guide. * Updated listing of stores where you can find printed guides. Check it out today at http://www.hemp.net/vote/. *** PRINTED GUIDES NEED TO BE DISTRIBUTED Out of 30,000 Voter's Guides, we still have close to 10,000 left to distribute. It is imperative that these get out--and soon! Absentee ballots will be hitting mailboxes within a week, and from what I've heard, half of all voters vote absentee. If you can help distribute Voter's Guides in your area, please contact us. We will send you as many as you need (preferably 50 or more). Put them in stores, libraries, coffeehouses, or clubs or just give them to friends or people on the street. *** W.H.E.N. NEEDS MONEY This project takes money. We've managed to get enough donations to print 30,000 Voter's Guide and do direct mailings. We've sent guides to the mailing lists of various organizations including the Washington State Libertarian Party, the Marijuana Policy Project and the November Coalition. We need money in order to mail out more guides before the General Election. If you can make a small or large donation to the Washington Hemp Education Network, please do. We can accept anonymous donations. W.H.E.N. has no Public Disclosure Commision filing requirements. Contact us for more information or send your contribution to: Washington Hemp Education Network PO Box 1217 Olympia, WA 98507 Please forward this to interested parties. Thanks for your time, energy and support! *** Ben Livingston -- Hemp.Net Number 2 Geek firstname.lastname@example.org -- http://www.hemp.net/~ben Pager: (206) 405-5862 --- (360) 971-5233 P.O. Box 95227 -- Seattle, WA 98145-2227 HempCast - http://www.hemp.net/hempcast/
------------------------------------------------------------------- Car Seizure Law Upheld In Oakland (The San Francisco Chronicle says an Alameda County judge yesterday rejected the American Civil Liberties Union's challenge to a pioneering Oakland city ordinance that allows police to seize the cars of alleged drug buyers and prostitution customers.) Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 11:34:10 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US CA: Car Seizure Law Upheld In Oakland Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com (Frank S. World) Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Pubdate: Fri, 09 Oct 1998 Section: Page A17 Author: Henry K. Lee, Chronicle Staff Writer CAR SEIZURE LAW UPHELD IN OAKLAND ACLU loses bid to block novel anti-vice ordinance An Alameda County judge yesterday rejected the American Civil Liberties Union's challenge to a pioneering Oakland city ordinance that allows police to seize the cars of alleged drug buyers and prostitution customers. Superior Court Judge Henry Needham Jr. declined to block enforcement of the law on constitutional grounds, saying the local ordinance enacted last year was not pre-empted by state law. His decision was cheered by about 30 Oakland residents after an hourlong hearing. In July, the ACLU filed a lawsuit charging that the ordinance violates state laws that mandate car seizures only in the case of a conviction. The Oakland program, dubbed ``Operation Beat Feet'' because the suspected scofflaws have to hoof it after officers tow their cars, will continue in earnest, officials said. ``We're thrilled,'' said Oakland Deputy City Attorney Marcia Meyers. ``The judge has validated that the City Council acted appropriately in passing this ordinance.'' Meyers said she has been besieged with calls from other cities interested in following Oakland's lead. The ordinance, designed to encourage miscreants passing through town to keep on going, is the first of its kind in the state. ``They're all watching us, and I would suspect you will see city after city adopting this kind of local ordinance as a result of this decision,'' she said. Alan Schlosser, managing attorney for the Northern California ACLU, said the group plans to appeal the decision. Oakland has every right to deal with crime, but not at the expense of basic constitutional protections, he said. ``We feel that the state Legislature struck a balance which takes into account law enforcement needs, community needs and individual rights,'' Schlosser said. ``It's unfortunate that Oakland refuses to adhere to that balance.'' Also voicing disappointment was Steven Simrin, an Oakland attorney who represented a woman whose car was seized even though she was not present when her husband's friend solicited an undercover cop for drugs while riding in her car. ``It's ridiculous,'' Simrin said. ``Innocent people are getting caught up in it.'' Oakland Police Chief Joseph Samuels Jr. said officers have confiscated almost 100 cars during seven Beat Feet operations. ``Thanks to the wisdom and sensitivity of Judge Needham to community concerns, Beat Feet is alive and well and up and running,'' Samuels said, adding, ``It will be coming to a neighborhood near you.'' 1998 San Francisco Chronicle
------------------------------------------------------------------- Defending moms - a busy week so far (A list subscriber forwards a shocking account of prohibition agents in San Bernardino, California, running amok.) From: "ralph sherrow" (email@example.com) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Fwd: Defending moms (a busy week so far) Date: Fri, 09 Oct 1998 11:44:30 PDT *** Subject: Defending moms ( a busy week so far) From: Drgwarwhr@aol.com Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 04:44:50 EDT Monday On Monday I spoke at the San Bernardino City Council Meeting with Russ and his dad, Ken. This is a televised city council meeting and a lot of people watch it. Especially the senior citizens in the community. Ken andd Russ were involved in an altercation with the police several days earlier at their home in San Bernardino. These people are typical, middle class white folks and so were the cops accept for their f**ked up attitudes. They live in a nice, middle class but older neighborhood. The police in this area are using code ennforcement to harrass property owners and bypass search warrants in the community. Seized assets has now become the fasting growing revenue source for city budgets. In this case the police beat up Carrol, Ken's wife, a senior citizen in the community. She also has cancer and Luppis (SP). Carrol had lived in this house for 37 years and went into shock after the incident. Within several days she was shaking badly, studdering and getting worse. The police also beat up Russ pretty bad after he was cuffed. Here is how it went down. At approx. 5:00 PM last Wed. night a police sergent, SGT Keith and another officer knocked on the front door. Carrol opened the door and asked the officer what he wanted. Sgt Keith stated he recieved a tip from a neighbor that someone living at the residence was selling needles and stockpiling guns at the residence.(They were way off base on this one.) He would like to come in and talk to her about it. She let him in. He then asked, if anyone besides Carrol and her husband lived there. She said her son did and the sgt then asked if he was home. (The police didn't know anybody's name.) (They have seized 65 properties this year for code violations.)She said she did not know and would check. When she started walking down the hall the other officer started following her down the hall. When she told him to get back into the living room Russ came out of the computer room and the officer rushed him. Carrol was in the way and the officer knocked Russ's mom down in the process. Russ got pissed and asked the pig if he had a warrant, the pig said no and Russ told him to get the fuck out of their house. The sgt kept Ken in the living room. Ken is a retired deputy sherriff from New Mexico and he was pissed. The sgt was spun and out of control. When they tried to get the two pigs out the front door 6 more were in the yard. (Ken told me in an interview later that he had never seen anything like this before in his life). They actually got the two pigs out the front door, believe it or not. Carrol shut the screen and stated to her husband and son. That crooked cop should be thrown off the force. At that point the sgt rushed the door and the rest of the swine followed. The whole bunch of them ran over her in the entryway and into the livingroom. Carrol was hurt pretty bad, Russ was ratpacked and cufffed. Ken helped his wife up and helped her to a chair. They both watched the sgt take his club and hit Russ in the jaw, (lost a tooth in the process) and hit him in the kidneys and back a few times. The sgt., sgt. Keith then got up and got into Carrol's face (she was hurt and crying) and started yelling at her. He told her is she did not co-operate he would cuff her and take her to jail right now. The sgt also got the other officers to keep back from his wife while he kept yelling at her. Ken told the sgt he was calling 911 to get some cops out to stop this shit. Sgt Keith told him, "go ahead, call 911. I'm a sgt. nobody will come out" Ken called. The dispatcher said they would send someone out. Nobody came out. Made a couple more threats worth repeating. One threat was based on Russ's failure to co-operate with the police and evoke his rights. The sgt stated if Russ had co-operated none of this would have happened, it was all his fault. Sgt Keith also told Carrol to co-operate or he would call in code enforcement. Pig Keith called in code enforcement but they had just gone home for the day. They then picked up Russ and took him off to jail. He was charged with Battery of a Police Officer and Obstructing an officer in his duties. He was taken to the County Medical Center for medical treatment. When the police left, Ken took his with to their HMO emergency center as well. On monday morning, we were at the city council meeting and listened to about 45 minutes of "we have great pigs" and "using aggressive code enforcement tactics to clean up the blight is the answer." Carrol had to stay home, doctors orders. Ken, her wife got up first to tell what happened. He was great and right in their face. I did a little coaching because we had to get through the "you let them in so its your fault crap". He lead off by stating that when a cop asks if he can come into your home and talk to you that you invite him in as a guest. He is expected to act like one. He then described what happened above, real accurately. He mentioned his law enforcement background and never saw that type of behavior from a law enforcement officer in his life. He mentioned several times that this cop (a sgt) was out of control and needed to be drug tested immediately. He closed with "a dirty cop is a criminal." Russ got up and showed his police paperwork to the camera. He stated the officers at their house were out of control, on drugs and above the law. He talked about what it was like to witness police terrorizing his mother while he is cuffed. About having his mother watch the police club him while he is cuffed on the floor. He said the experience has made his mom feel defenseless and abused in their San Bernardino home of thirty-sever years. Russ also stated that he felt totally abused and more defenseless than if the family had been robbed at gunpoint in their home. After that, there was little I could say. I led of by stating that Sgt Keith picked up some experience beating on little old ladies last week in San Bernardino. Your police are out of control, armed, dangerous, on drugs and corrupt. You need to clean up this mess because it is intollerable the way it is now. I then read some great one liners from sgt Keith. Here are a few of them. 1) Could we come in, we just want to talk. 2) If you do not co-operate I will cuff you and through you in jail. 3) If you do not co-operate I'll send code enforcement after you. 4) If you move again I'll break your legs. I saw Carrol later that afternoon. She had taped the show that morning and the look of helplessness was no longer on her face. I talked to her for a while and I could tell she felt a little more secure in their home. She said she was proud of her boys. We did good. There is something about cops pulling this type of shit (beating on your friend's mom) that builds rage. Imagine what it would be like if you were so terrified that you did nothing about it. You would have to live with that the rest of your life. No Thanks. I refuse to go there. Fighting for freedom is far easier than groveling because you have none. Tuesday On tuesday, I went to the Board of Supervisors meeting. Early that morning, a former city employee (now working for the post office) opened fire on the city council in Riverside. He believes he was fired several years ago because his activism was embarrassing the city goverment. He was complaining that the city government was neglecting minority children in Riverside. The local newspapers claim he is just a disgruntled former employee. How gracefully this newspaper is guilty of doing the same thing. The ruling class protects their own ass. A message to the Riverside City Council. Justice is a dish, best served cold. If you are as dirty as he thinks you are, he will probably be acquitted. To be continued tomorrow. One of the group got hauled off to jail for playing save the children on an accordian in protest to a neuclear waste dump at Ward Valley.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Jury Indicts Prison Guards (A Los Angeles Times article in The San Jose Mercury News says five correctional officers have been indicted by a special Kings County grand jury on conspiracy and other charges stemming from a 1993 rape at Corcoran State Prison by an inmate enforcer nicknamed "the Booty Bandit." The indictments came after a three-month investigation by the state attorney general's office into allegations of planned rapes and cover-ups at the San Joaquin Valley prison.) Date: Sun, 11 Oct 1998 10:37:58 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US CA: Jury Indicts Prison Guards Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Marcus/Mermelstein Family (email@example.com) Pubdate: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/ Author: Los Angeles Times JURY INDICTS PRISON GUARDS Inmate rapes investigated Los Angeles Times FRESNO -- Five correctional officers have been indicted by a special Kings County grand jury on conspiracy and other charges stemming from a 1993 rape at Corcoran State Prison by an inmate enforcer nicknamed ``the Booty Bandit.'' The five officers, including a lieutenant, were booked at Kings County Jail late Thursday on a variety of criminal charges including conspiracy to aid and abet sodomy and preparing false reports. The indictments came after a three-month investigation by the state attorney general's office into allegations of planned rapes and cover-ups at the San Joaquin Valley prison. The five officers were identified by the Kings County Sheriff's Department as Lt. Jeffrey A. Jones, 36; Sgt. Robert Alan Decker, 40; Sgt. Dale S. Brakebill, 33; and officers Anthony J. Sylva, 35 and Joe Sanchez, 37. The March 1993 rape of inmate Eddie Dillard, a 23-year-old Los Angeles gang member imprisoned for assault with a deadly weapon, had been investigated last year by a state Corrections Department team and the Kings County district attorney's office. The alleged rapist, convicted murderer Wayne Robertson, had told state investigators that he raped Dillard at the behest of prison staffers. But because the initial investigation couldn't break what authorities have described as the prison's code of silence -- no officers would come forward about the alleged crime -- the matter was dropped. In July, a story in the Los Angeles Times focused on one former guard who gave the newspaper a first-hand account of the rape. Roscoe Pondexter described how fellow officers had transferred Dillard into the cell of Robertson, knowing that the 6-foot-3, 230-pound prison enforcer would probably rape the small, skinny Dillard. In August, after striking an immunity deal with Pondexter, the attorney general's office convened a special grand jury in Kings County and subpoenaed Pondexter, Dillard, Robertson and several officers. Robertson told corrections investigators that any time Corcoran supervisors needed an inmate to be ``checked'' they could call on him. Depending on his mood, he said, he would either rape or beat them. 1997 - 1998 Mercury Center.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marines Arrested In Drug Investigation (The San Jose Mercury News version of yesterday's story about six US marines being arrested at Camp Pendleton for alleged marijuana use.) Date: Sat, 10 Oct 1998 23:05:35 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US CA: Marines Arrested In Drug Investigation Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Marcus/Mermelstein Family (email@example.com) Pubdate: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/ Author: From Mercury News Wire Reports MARINES ARRESTED IN DRUG INVESTIGATION Six Marines were arrested and at least seven others were under investigation for allege marijuana and steroids use, Camp Pendleton officials said Thursday. Five of the Marines arrested were helicopter mechanics; the other worked at Camp Pendleton's substance abuse control center and allegedly helped Marines alter the results of their drug tests, said 1st Lt. Eric Dent, a Camp Pendleton spokesman. The Marines arrested appeared in military court Wednesday for the civilian equivalent of a bail hearing. Lt. Bill Bartolomea, an attorney for the Marines' helicopter squadron, told military magistrate Maj. Etoy Brown that one of the mechanics, a lance corporal, was a chronic marijuana user who smoked daily and ``sometimes comes to work stoned.'' ``This is a Marine who is working on aircraft that we are flying,'' Bartolomea said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Pro-Marijuana Group Settles Suit it Filed Over Ouster From '92 Fair (The Salt Lake Tribune says the group Mood For A Day, which advocates the use of hemp for food, fuel, medicine, paper and fiber, and therefore was ejected from the 1992 Salt Lake County Fair, has settled out of court for $32,500. Attorney Brian Barnard will receive the bulk of the settlement, leaving about $1,500 for the group, which lost an estimated $2,000 in sales of T-shirts, buttons and bumper stickers.) Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 20:04:55 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US UT: Pro-Marijuana Group Settles Suit it Filed Over Ouster From '92 Fair Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com (Frank S. World) Source: Salt Lake Tribune (UT) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sltrib.com/ Pubdate: Friday, October 9, 1998 Author: Sheila R. McCann PRO-MARIJUANA GROUP SETTLES SUIT IT FILED OVER OUSTER FROM '92 FAIR A pro-marijuana group's lawsuit over its ejection from the 1992 Salt Lake County Fair has been settled out of court for $32,500. A trial was scheduled to begin next week before U.S. District Judge Dee Benson on claims by Mood For A Day. The group, which advocates the use of cannabis hemp and marijuana for food, fuel, medicine, paper and fiber, argued its members' First Amendment right to free speech was violated by the eviction. The county denies wrongdoing, saying it settled to avoid expensive and unnecessary litigation. Salt Lake County has agreed to pay the group $7,500. An insurance policy for Salt Lake County Fair Inc., the nonprofit organization that ran the 1992 fair, paid $25,000 on behalf of four board members named in the suit. Attorney Brian Barnard will receive the bulk of the settlement as fees. The group will keep about $1,500, Barnard said. Mood For A Day had estimated it lost about $2,000 in T-shirt, button and bumper sticker sales after it was thrown out of the fair. The group has not had a booth at the county fair since the suit was filed, but has appeared at state fairs, Barnard said. Authorities said 1992 county fairgoers complained Mood For A Day promoted illegal drug use, pushed its literature on teen-agers and displayed offensive bumper stickers and slogans, such as ``Thank You for Pot Smoking.'' The fair board revoked the group's lease mid-way through the fair, and Mood For A Day sued in federal court. A jury would have been asked to decide whether Mood For A Day was advocating the legalization of marijuana, as the group claimed, or was urging people to break the law, as the county contended. The group's civil rights may have been violated if it were ejected only for supporting legislative change, or for a content-based reason other than advocating the violation of drug laws, Benson said in a pretrial ruling. Mood For A Day's lawsuit sought a promise it would not be evicted from future Salt Lake County fairs. But management of the county fair has changed since 1992, and the settlement did not include such an agreement, Barnard said. Copyright 1998, The Salt Lake Tribune
------------------------------------------------------------------- Michael Domangue's Choice (Colorado attorney Warren C Edson says the judge in the case of his client, medical marijuana cultivator Michael Domangue, has reversed himself and nullified Domangue's ability to present a "choice of evils" defense.)Date: Fri, 09 Oct 1998 17:15:24 -0600 From: chandler@ACCNETCO.NET (Warren C Edson) To: "DRCTalk Reformers' Forum" (email@example.com) Subject: MD Choice Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com -I figured I had better send this out while I'm still sober........ I'm displeased to announce that today the Judge in Michael Domangue's case heard issues relating to the DA's Motion for Reconsideration of the Judge's decision to allow the Choice of Evils defense in Michael Domangue's Med MJ case. The Judge reversed in part. He held that MD can use choice of evils as an affirmative defense against the possession of cured MJ charge but the Judge reversed his previous ruling and disallowed the defense against charges of growing MJ. The DA's office then dismissed the possession charges and kept the felony 4 growing charge. Thus, there will be no choice of evils defense in MD's case and MD faces a felony 4. -Under Colorado law the Defense is not entitled to an interlocutory appeal. The only way we can appeal the Judge's decision is to go to trial and lose. MD would then be a felon. He would face 2-6 years in the Department of Corrections and would lose his military benefits, his only income source. Currently there is no offer from the DA's office in this case. The Judge based his decision on: 1) Growing MJ is a long term project and can't help an "imminent threat." 2) The defendant had previously told the officers that he was planning on throwing the 4" plant away because it looked dead and thus a dead, thrown away plant can't help any needs. 3) Colo. had a Med MJ law but it was taken off the books by our state officials. This shows legislative intent to not allow an affirmative defense for MJ possession charges. (thanks elected officials). I don't know why, given this, the Judge then allowed the defense for possession. -This really sucks and now MD is screwed. If you see a long haired white boy laying in the 5 Points gutters tonight please try not to run me over. -Vote YES on Amendment 19 and I wouldn't have had to go through any of this BS. -Warren Edson
------------------------------------------------------------------- Oregon Physician Addresses Coloradans (An exchange, prompted by the previous item, between Dr. Rick Bayer, the chief petitioner for the Oregon Medical Marijuana Act, and reformers in Colorado and elsewhere who oppose Amendment 19, the medical marijuana initiative also sponsored by Americans for Medical Rights. Dr. Bayer explains why he agreed to appear in a television advertisement for Amendment 19.) From: "ralph sherrow" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: email@example.com Subject: Fwd: Oregon Physician Addresses Coloradans Date: Mon, 12 Oct 1998 01:38:42 PDT Date: Sun, 11 Oct 1998 22:44:58 -0600 (MDT) From: Citizens for Compassionate Cannabis (firstname.lastname@example.org) Reply-To: Citizens for Compassionate Cannabis (email@example.com) To: "Colo. Hemp Init. Project" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: Oregon Physician Addresses Coloradans From: Rick Bayer, MD, FACP Board Certified, American Board of Internal Medicine Chief Petitioner, Oregon Medical Marijuana Act (Measure 67) Posted to DRCtalk, October 9, 1998 Dear Mr. Edson, Ms. Kriho, and Coloradans: I have not posted to this forum before but it is time for this non-Coloradan to speak, because I may have just entered your campaign by making TV & radio ads supportive of Amendment 19. I read recently that A19 may or may not occur as per the questionable accounting methods of the Colorado Sec of State so this post may be irrelevant. Be that as it may, let me state my philosophy in case you have to look at my face and hear my voice this fall. I do not believe that medical mj laws belong in any constitution. AMR was disappointed with us but we in Oregon would not work with AMR unless our Oregon Medical Marijuana Act (Measure 67) was statutory rather than a constitutional amendment. AMR is concerned that "the Arizona Prop 200 thing" does not happen elsewhere and their concern is legitimate, however, many of us believe that "laws are a process rather than an *event*" and prefer a statutory law. This is but one of many concerns about A19 and Laura Kriho, whom I respect, has been very eloquent about the imperfections in A19. Recognizing that Laura has much greater experience in hemp/mj legislative work than I, it simply boiled down to this for me: "Will dying and suffering patients in Colorado be better off if A19 wins or will they be better off if A19 loses?" This, to me - a medical doctor - that was the crux of the argument. Laura says patients will be better off if A19 loses and Warren Edson says patients will be better off if A19 wins. This is not a question of whether Laura could have written a better, more "patient-friendly" law (no doubt in my mind about that). I don't like some of the parts of Oregon's Measure 67 either, like the registry ID card system but in polling data and focus groups, it seemed important, etc. Remember that this is "political science" and not molecular biology or reading a pathology slide from a biopsy. For us in Oregon, it is imperative that we win big to silence our Republican legislature and then work with our Oregon Health Division to make sure that the permit card information is just as confidential as the report I have to make to the Health Division about TB or gonorrhea. Back to Colorado. . . It is because of the descriptions like below that this Oregon doctor chose to do a TV and radio ad for Colorado (which you all may never hear). I do not pretend to know more about your state or laws than you Coloradans and I certainly do not pretend to know more than Laura Kriho on anything related to cannabis. I do claim to know more than either Ms. Kriho or Mr. Edson (or Mr. Barrus) about caring for dying and suffering patients. It was my feeling that patients like the gentleman described below will be better off with A19. There was also selfishness on my part because I believe that Oregon patients whom I know quite well will be better off if there are many states that win this fall rather than just Oregon and Washington (we are looking pretty good here in the Pacific NW with both campaigns led by doctors). I really think mj should be schedule II (prescribable by doctors) and believe many victories this fall are more likely to accomplish this than just a couple of victories. So I am prepared to take the daggers and arrows for "butting into Colorado politics" but wanted you all to know the reasons that I did so. It was certainly not my love of AMR (and Laura knows that). Now, you Coloradans can attack me for the correct reasons knowing that I exercised my judgement based on my compassion and my past experiences taking care of dying patients and knowing that many of those patients can't wait until the next election. One final disclaimer is that I am not on a payroll of AMR and in fact am losing thousands dollars this campaign trying to win in Oregon (we have a 59 to 37 lead now in the Oregon polls). However, I do believe that dying and suffering patients should not be arrested simply for using medical marijuana under a doctor's supervision. And, I do believe that patients in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Colorado, and everywhere will be better off if we ALL win in a few weeks. My respect goes to those activists who disagree with me but we simply disagree on how to vote in the event that is to take place on November 3. On most other things, we agree. Finally, I too am a grass-roots community activist in Oregon who co-directs a community lead-screening program for urban pre-school kids, protested recently via direct actions against our US Senators when they were waffling about clean air standards, regularly participates in discussions with the DOE (more like fights) about Hanford Nuclear Reservation clean up efforts (more radioactive material is leaking into the Columbia River upstream from my home in Portland), was a spokesperson in last year's history-making Oregon Death With Dignity Law, serves on the Physicians for Social Responsibility - Oregon, Board of Directors, etc. etc. so don't waste your time criticizing me for not being a legitimate community activist. You are, however, certainly free to criticize my judgement and my decision, particularly the part that was based more on my love for those in Oregon than my knowledge of those in Colorado. I am truly sorry that the apparent lack of intestinal fortitude demonstrated by Coloradan doctors and their failure to advocate for their patients forced me, an Oregon doctor, to make this decision yesterday afternoon. Obviously, getting a doctor from Colorado would have been better (and may still be possible???). But then again, Oregon has the only Death With Dignity Law, etc. In summary, I hope you Coloradans have a chance to decide on the issue and encourage everyone to vote Yes on Amendment 19 because as imperfect as it is (like a constitutional amendment for starters), many of us believe simply that patients will be better off in the immediate future if it wins than if it loses. I should not have to remind you all that the immediate future is all that many patients have left. OK, now you can start the criticism for the correct reasons. Thank you very much for reading this before you wondered who the middle-aged bald-headed doctor was on your TV set or who the voice on your radio was. Sincerely, Rick Bayer, MD, FACP Board Certified, American Board of Internal Medicine Chief Petitioner, Oregon Medical Marijuana Act (Measure 67) 6800 SW Canyon Drive Portland, OR 97225 503-292-1035 (voice) 503-297-0754 (fax) mailto: email@example.com http://www.teleport.com/~omr P.S. - To those in Alaska and Nevada, please note that I made ads for those states as well and the below is still valid. Colorado was chosen because I was responding to Mr. Edson's note and reflecting on my past contact with Ms. Kriho. That and the fact I did the ads yesterday presented the obvious stimulus to initiate the discussion. Rick Bayer *** Dr. Bayer was responding to the below post from Attorney Warren Edson who had just been denied the right to make a choice of evils defense for his client, after having previously been granted the right by the court to present evidence of his client's medical need for marijuana. *** On Fri, 9 Oct 1998, Warren C Edson wrote: -I figured I had better send this out while I'm still sober........ I'm displeased to announce that today the Judge in Michael Domangue's case heard issues relating to the DA's Motion for Reconsideration of the Judge's decision to allow the Choice of Evils defense in Michael Domangue's Med MJ case. The Judge reversed in part. He held that MD can use choice of evils as an affirmative defense against the possession of cured MJ charge but the Judge reversed his previous ruling and disallowed the defense against charges of growing MJ. The DA's office then dismissed the possession charges and kept the felony 4 growing charge. Thus, there will be no choice of evils defense in MD's case and MD faces a felony 4. -Under Colorado law the Defense is not entitled to an interlocutory appeal. The only way we can appeal the Judge's decision is to go to trial and lose. MD would then be a felon. He would face 2-6 years in the Department of Corrections and would lose his military benefits, his only income source. Currently there is no offer from the DA's office in this case. The Judge based his decision on: 1) Growing MJ is a long term project and can't help an "imminent threat." 2) The defendant had previously told the officers that he was planning on throwing the 4" plant away because it looked dead and thus a dead, thrown away plant can't help any needs. 3) Colo. had a Med MJ law but it was taken off the books by our state officials. This shows legislative intent to not allow an affirmative defense for MJ possession charges. (thanks elected officials). I don't know why, given this, the Judge then allowed the defense for possession. -This really sucks and now MD is screwed. If you see a long haired white boy laying in the 5 Points gutters tonight please try not to run me over. *** This is a tough break, but I'm sure you did everything you could to prevent it. The powers-that-be won't allow for anything as progressive as a medical necessity defense to happen, espec. not this close to an election. You made a noble effort, and you still have a good chance of winning at trial. One four inch plant - come on! Let's hope for some good jurors. *** -Vote YES on Amendment 19 and I wouldn't have had to go through any of this BS. -Warren Edson *** Better read that initiative again. Amendment 19 would allow only patients with one of the "debilitating medical conditions" listed in the initiative to present an affirmative defense. PTSD is not one of the listed conditions. Being a constitutional amendment, Amendment 19 might actually override the statutory allowance for a choice of evils defense for medical marijuana use, leaving patients like Michael Domangue without any way of presenting evidence of their medical need to the jury. Until, of course, someone successfully petitions the state health dept. to add PTSD to the list of "debilitating medical conditions." Laura Kriho *** From Colorado Citizens for Compassionate Cannabis October 9, 1998 Dear Dr. Bayer, I appreciate your letter. My opinion is that it was foolish of you to do these ads for AMR, given your reservations about the different initiatives, for free. AMR was obviously desperate to tape these spots, and you could have named your price and put the money to work in coalition-building and other good projects. But what is really amazing is that with all of this money being spent in Colorado on the Amendment 19 "campaign" (estimated at over $200,000 at this point) that AMR couldn't find a local physician to be their spokesperson. Yes, you and I disagree on the fundamental question of the Colorado initiative: Will it help patients? Many of us in Colorado believe it will endanger patients by making distribution unconstitutional and forcing sick people to obtain their medicine on the black market. There are other flaws that can only be changed by amending the constitution, which can only be done through the expensive and time-consuming ballot initiative process. I do not hold it against you personally for appearing in advertisements for the Colorado initiative. Standing up for what you believe in is a noble thing, even more so when you believe in something controversial. I appreciate your letter to us in advance of these commercials. I would like to hold your letter up as the best example I've ever seen in the drug policy reform movement of people disagreeing without being disagreeable. We should all try to achieve Dr. Bayer's model of respect and empathy when dealing with people with whom we disagree. You're doing what you think is right, even though we think it's wrong and neither you nor your patients will have to sort out the consequences of Amendment 19's passage. I do find it appalling that AMR could not find any local physicians to appear in their advertisements. Using out-of-state spokespeople can only reflect badly on the AMR campaign. Where are our local physicians and patients? Why should Colorado voters care what a physician in Oregon has to say? If it's so good for Colorado (or Alaska or Nevada), where's the local support? As I've said before, the real failing of the AMR campaign is in the strategy and not in the language of the initiatives. AMR did not just ignore, but actively impugned, local grassroots organizations that support medicinal uses of cannabis. We would have happily supported the initiative if we thought it was going to move us forwards, not backwards. If AMR had not chosen the strategy of ignoring local concerns and local support, I can guarantee that: 1) Their initiative would be on the ballot now, with no question of whether or not enough signatures were collected. Our volunteers would have collected many thousands of signatures, at no cost to AMR, which would have put them well over the top. 2) AMR would have a Colorado physician to do their television ads. We have spent seven years working on cannabis reform in Colorado and have a lot of contacts. 3) We would be seeing some real momentum forming from this "campaign" that would last until well after the election. As it is now, we are seeing almost no publicity from the AMR campaign. One of Denver's two major newspapers, the Rocky Mountain News (the most cannabis-friendly of the two), came out against Amendment 19, in part because "doctors don't send their patients out into an illicit market to obtain a drug from criminals" and "only criminals would sell the substance to patients authorized for use by Amendment 19." I realize that AMR is still in limbo about whether or not the votes cast on Amendment 19 will be counted, but there is still so much that could be happening for little or no cost (endorsements, rallies, debates, presentations, etc.) We are also seeing no coalition-building from the AMR campaign. If they've gotten the endorsements of any major (or minor) organization in Colorado, I haven't heard about it. And we've seen how much they loathe the idea of building a coalition with grassroots medicinal cannabis supporters. And now we find out they can't even get a local physician as a spokesperson. This is appalling! Perhaps the most depressing part of having an Oregon physician stump for Colorado's Amendment 19 is that it ruins the credibility of all medicinal cannabis proponents in Colorado. I can guarantee you that we could get at least one local physician and several health care professionals willing to speak publicly about medicinal cannabis. The fact that AMR can't will only reflect badly on the movement in general. So, as I've said before, real change is created by movements of people, not by mere election wins and "symbolic" constitutional amendments. The AMR campaigns are failing to create this movement of people, and in fact is often dividing the movement that exists, and we do not support that. Laura Kriho Colorado Citizens for Compassionate Cannabis P.O. Box 729 Nederland, CO 80466 Phone: (303) 448-5640 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: http://www.levellers.org/cannabis.html *** Date: Sun, 11 Oct 1998 22:17:55 -0600 (MDT) From: Citizens for Compassionate Cannabis (email@example.com) To: "Colo. Hemp Init. Project" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: Amendment 19: Med. Mj. Ballot Initiative in Colorado Amendment 19: Medical Marijuana Ballot Initiative in Colorado Is it good medicine? Colorado Citizens for Compassionate Cannabis October 10, 1998 The Colorado Hemp Initiative Project (CO-HIP) is the longest established cannabis reform organization in the state, having worked for the re-legalization of cannabis for medicinal, industrial and personal uses for over seven years. In January 1998, members of CO-HIP along with several patients and health professionals formed Colorado Citizens for Compassionate Cannabis (CCCC) to focus strictly on the medicinal uses of cannabis. There has been some confusion about whether CO-HIP or CCCC is sponsoring Amendment 19, a medical marijuana initiative proposed for the November ballot in Colorado. To clarify the situation, neither the Colorado Hemp Initiative Project nor Colorado Citizens for Compassionate Cannabis has any involvement in Amendment 19. The proponents of Amendment 19 are a group called Coloradans for Medical Rights. CMR was formed in 1997 as an affiliate to Americans for Medical Rights. AMR is based in Santa Monica, California and is funded primarily by billionaire George Soros. Bill Zimmerman is the campaign manager for AMR and Dave Fratello is the spokesperson. While we support the legal regulation of cannabis for all its uses, we have some serious concerns about Amendment 19. Although the initiative may be well-intentioned, it is poorly written and may actually endanger patients rather than help them. It is based on a law enforcement model of medicine, which drastically departs from the California therapeutic model (The Compassionate Use Act) passed in 1996 by voters. We expressed our concerns (outlined below) about the initiative to AMR in the fall of 1997. We learned that the initiative was drafted primarily by people from outside the state. A representative of AMR's funders told us that the initiative is only "symbolic": designed to send a message to the feds, but not ever to be actually implemented. AMR believes a restrictive initiative can get the support of law enforcement and thereby more easily win. We do not believe amendments to our Constitution should be "symbolic." We believe that the welfare of patients should be just as important as winning an election. We believe it is possible to write a good law that will win and benefit patients. In January 1998, Colorado Citizens for Compassionate Cannabis submitted an alternative initiative, the Compassionate Therapeutic Cannabis Act (http://www.levellers.org/ctca.htm). The initiative was approved for circulation by the state, but we never actually printed or circulated it. Our goal in submitting the CTCA was to: 1) provide a backup initiative in case the AMR petition was ruled invalid for some technical reason or legal error 2) provide people with an alternative to the law enforcement model being promoted by AMR across the country We never intended to circulate the initiative alongside the AMR petition. We felt that would have been too confusing for voters. Circulating competing initiatives is not good strategy. It is still unclear whether or not the AMR initiative can be enacted by Colorado voters. It will appear on the ballot, but the votes for it may not be counted. The Secretary of State's office has come under great criticism this year for their incompetent counting of initiative signatures. The AMR initiative was originally ruled to have insufficient signatures by the Secretary of State. AMR appealed the signature count, and a Denver district court judge ordered the initiative placed on the ballot, pending a review by the Supreme Court. On Monday, October 5, the Colorado Supreme Court order Secretary of State Victoria Buckley to do a line by line count of the signatures collected (she had previously counted only a random sample.) According to the Denver Post the justices said, "When the polls close on Nov. 3, Buckley is to count the votes cast for the initiative 'if, and only if,' she has already determined there were a sufficient number of valid signatures..." (http://www.levellers.org/recount.htm) Whatever the outcome of the signature count, we feel it is important to state our concerns about the initiative to allow voters to make an informed decision about Amendment 19. We have researched the amendment extensively and have concluded that the initiative will endanger patients and may make Colorado marijuana penalties worse than they already are. We believe the effect of its passage may actually set Colorado efforts at cannabis reform backwards. Below are some of the concerns we have about Amendment 19. We have tried several times recently to get AMR to comment on these specific concerns. Dave Fratello wrote on September 15, 1998 that their goal was to "communicate with tens of thousands of undecided voters, not to persuade opponents to change their views." So we are not able to provide a rebuttal to these concerns from the initiative proponents. If you have any questions for them, mail them to: email@example.com or see their Web page. http://www.medicalmarijuana.com Summary of Concerns: 1) The AMR initiative fails to create a distribution system for patients to obtain marijuana. In fact, the initiative makes distribution unconstitutional by setting low limits on possession and cultivation that would preclude the state health department or any other entity from distributing marijuana to patients. 2) This lack of a distribution system will endanger patients by forcing them to obtain their medicine on the streets. 3) Passage of the AMR initiative will increase the number of patients purchasing marijuana on the streets. This will needlessly endanger law enforcement by expanding the black market in marijuana. 4) Because the AMR initiative is a constitutional amendment, it creates a constitutional standard that marijuana for non-patients is illegal. (Marijuana is currently not mentioned in the constitution and is only regulated by statutes.) 5) Currently, possession of one to eight ounces of marijuana is a misdemeanor in Colorado; less than one ounce is a petty offense, punishable only by a ticket. The AMR initiative creates a constitutional standard that only two ounces is a "safe" amount of marijuana. The AMR initiative gives the government the reason and the power to increase penalties for possession of more than two ounces, even for non-patients. 6) The federal government provides eight patients with eight ounces of cannabis each month as part of a now-defunct federal medical marijuana program. The AMR amendment prohibits patients from possessing more than two ounces or cultivating more than three plants. Since it is impossible to maintain an adequate supply (by federal standards) from only three plants, any patient who tries to maintain an adequate supply will be prosecuted. This will be detrimental to patients who will not often be physically or financially capable of enduring a lengthy court battle. 7) The AMR initiative interferes with the physician/patient relationship by limiting the diseases for which a physician can recommend marijuana and dictating the dosage and frequency of medicinal use. 8) The AMR initiative opens physicians up to unspecified penalties if the physician discusses marijuana with a patient who does not have one of the "approved" medical conditions designated by the authors of the initiative. 9) The AMR initiative would require patients to register with the state and obtain a photo I.D. card in order to receive protection from the law. 10) The AMR initiative would allow only those patients with an "approved" medical condition to argue a medical necessity defense in court. Patients who use cannabis as medicine for an illness that is not listed would not be given the right to present evidence of their medical need in court. 11) The AMR initiative would allow law enforcement to have access to the registry of medical marijuana users to determine whether a patient has legitimately registered with the state. Although the initiative states that the registry should be "confidential", there are no penalties set for violation of this confidentiality. Without a harsh penalty, it is unclear the extent to which law enforcement will be allowed to scrutinize the registry and patient medical records. 12) The AMR initiative may outlaw sterilized cannabis seeds, which are currently legal and used in a variety of food products. The initiative creates a new definition of marijuana that does not exclude sterilized seeds, as Colorado and federal statutes currently do. Therefore, a patient would not be allowed to possess more than two ounces of sterilized seed. (Currently, any amount is legal to possess.) Furthermore, since constitutional law often overrides statutes, the initiative may outlaw sterilized seeds even for non-patients. 13) The AMR initiative makes marijuana appear to be a dangerous drug. No other medication has limits on its use written into the constitution. In addition, state bureaucrats are not allowed to make medical decisions for other illnesses/treatments. These concerns are serious but have been ignored by the proponents of Amendment 19. The question is, will Amendment 19 be a step in the right direction or will it endanger patients and make Colorado law worse? This is the question for Colorado voters who support medicinal cannabis. The AMR initiative is a constitutional amendment. Therefore the flaws in the initiative cannot be ironed out by the state legislature; the amendment can only be changed by a vote of the people. Since the process to get an initiative on the ballot is lengthy and expensive, any flaws in the language of the amendment are likely to be with us for a long time, should the initiative become enacted. If you would like more information on this issue, please feel free to contact us: Colorado Citizens for Compassionate Cannabis P.O. Box 729 Nederland, CO 80466 Vmail: (303) 448-5640 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: http://www.levellers.org/cannabis.html Links: Coloradans for Medical Rights Home Page http://www.medicalmarijuana.com Concerns about Americans for Medical Rights from patients in other states: http://www.levellers.org/lemodel.htm The compassionate alternatives to AMR's law enforcement model: http://www.levellers.org/theramod.htm This document is available online at: http://www.levellers.org/a19.htm *** From: "Barrus, Tom (Cahners)" (Tom.Barrus@denver.cahners.com) To: "DRCTalk Reformers' Forum" (email@example.com) Cc: "'firstname.lastname@example.org'" (email@example.com) Subject: Response to Dr. Rick Bayer Date: Mon, 12 Oct 1998 17:29:38 -0400 Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com Dr. Rick Bayer in DRCTALK Digest 145 on 9 Oct 1998 wrote: "Will dying and suffering patients in Colorado be better off if A19 wins or will they be better off if A19 loses?" I believe, Dr. Bayer, that dying and suffering patients in Colorado will be better off if Ballot Initiative #19 (which still is not officially certified for the ballot) loses. The reason is that the initiative is bad law as written and perpetuates the tyrannical idea that we need "permission" from the government to grow plants. There are other reasons for opposing this oppressive piece of garbage which appears to be modeled after law enforcement fascist tyranny. Because #19, if passed, will make things worse, I will be voting against it if it does happen to be certified for the ballot. I continue to speak out against it on talk shows such as 50kwatt KOA, 850 AM. Further in his posting, Dr. Bayer also said: "I really think mj should be schedule II (prescribable by doctors)" Dr. Bayer, I will assume that you are familiar with the schedules in the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). Why are you advocating such a dishonest position? I am a Registered Pharmacist (until the kangaroo court of the so-called Administrative Law Judge, or more correctly, the kangaroo court of the Colorado State Board of Pharmacy, aided and abetted by the oath-breakers at the Attorney General's office, revokes/suspends/whatever they do to my pharmacy license - but even then I remain a person who graduated with a B.S. in Pharmacy, magna cum laude) and know that even the words of this evil "law", the CSA do not in any way justify classifying cannabis as a schedule I or schedule II controlled substance. At most, a weak case could possibly be made for classifying cannabis as a schedule V controlled substance, like codeine cough syrup. A much stronger case can be made for classifying caffeine as a schedule V controlled substance. Before the hysteria of 1937 cannabis was a legitimate drug prescribed by medical doctors. It was usually in the dosage form of an alcoholic elixir, in particular Parke Davis manufactured "Elixir of Cannabis, U.S.P." This dosage form was ingested orally, it was not smoked. So again I ask, why the dishonesty is falsely ascribing schedule II controlled substance status to cannabis? Cannabis does not meet the criteria to be classified as a schedule I, II, III or IV controlled substance. Only a weak case could be made to classify cannabis as a schedule V controlled substance, if one honestly reads the "law", that is, the CSA itself. Prescription drugs and over-the-counter drugs are prescribable by doctors. Why not be honest is describing what cannabis really is? You are a medical doctor. You know it is a lie to state that cannabis meets the criteria to be either a schedule I, II, III or IV controlled substance. Why did you lie? Will you retract your lie and speak the truth? Will others who claim to be "drug-reformers" and who are also lying about cannabis meeting the criteria to be a schedule III controlled substance also admit that this is a lie? When you're making your retraction, will you do us the favor the Congress did not do in enacting their hate crimes bill, otherwise known as the CSA and define what "abuse" means? Is it lawyer/government official Warren C. Edson using the drug alcohol without a prescription from a government licensed doctor for a legitimate medical purpose to such an extent that he ends up lying in the gutters in 5 Points (a black neighborhood of NE downtown Denver)? Is that what is meant by drug "abuse"? Tom Barrus, RPh, MBA Tom.Barrus@denver.cahners.com
I am a drug user and I am a good person. "The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) is an evil hypocritical 'law' created by hypocrites, enforced and administered by hypocrites and supported by hypocrites." "Repeal the subjugation of the CSA and DEA by abolishing both evil entities." The Republicrats/Demopublicans have had their chance and failed. VOTE LIBERTARIAN! *** From: "Rick Bayer" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: "DRCTalk Reformers' Forum" (email@example.com) Subject: RE: Response to Dr. Rick Bayer Date: Mon, 12 Oct 1998 19:49:37 -0700 Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com Dear Pharmacist Barrus: Thank you for your letter. You have indeed convinced me that I have made the right decision by supporting dying and suffering patients in Colorado and elsewhere who will benefit from a Yes vote on A19. I admit that I thought hard about my decision but a response like yours tells me I was correct to encourage a Yes vote on A19 and you have presented me the opportunity to reinforce and communicate that decision to a larger audience. Rather than engage in seductive but caustic rhetoric about admittedly unattractive aspects of federal policy, maybe you should divert your attention to the beside of patients who are dying RIGHT NOW and are in legal jeopardy because of restricted access to medical marijuana. I know many patients like that, discussed my decision with patients at a fundraiser in Portland last night, at a luncheon Friday - had some discussions by telephone and e-mail Friday and Saturday while firming up whether I did the right thing, and those patients unanimously support my decision to make the ads. They don't understand why any concerned individual would vote NO on any medical mj initiative on any ballot anywhere and, like me, they want to pass laws everywhere so some day they can get mj from a pharmacy as you discuss. I also sincerely believe that patients who are using mj as medicine NOW will benefit from a change in law NOW. Why should patients continue to suffer waiting for YOU to be successful at getting YOUR proposal on the ballot? You, Mr. Barrus, have NO law on the ballot to even vote on but Coloradans for Medical Rights does (A19). The choice seems obvious and it seems foolish to deny some patients some legal protection NOW. Voters either need to vote "Yes" or "No" on A19 and you are certainly entitled to your opinion. It is ironic that you are forcing me to further "stump" for Coloradans for Medical Rights but you leave me little choice other than to ignore your outrageous and demeaning comments directed at me personally. You are not telling me anything that I do not know about the CSA and there is no need to engage in disingenuous academic mental masturbation on the Internet while patients are getting busted for trying to survive through another round of chemo or eat enough to maintain their weight while coping with AIDS. Patients need change NOW! If your success at advocating for dying and suffering patients was as effective as your ability to deliver inflammatory text to the Internet, there would be no need for A19 because you would be showing the rest of the U.S.A. how to pass perfect medical marijuana laws. However, that scenario does not exist and your angry words ring hollow. Your energy and academic prowess may be better spent doing things other than engaging me in electronic debate in this public forum but you deserved at least one response to such an aggressive broadside aimed directly at me personally. Actions do speak louder than words and I intend to devote the remaining time before November 3rd to action in support of those patients who have worked very hard to get the lead we currently enjoy with Measure 67 in Oregon (59-37 in recent polls). Winning a medical marijuana initiative takes a lot more than cheap talk and harsh rhetoric. You can send your WORDS to drctalk to rebut me if you find it therapeutic for you, but I will be busy continuing the same type of ACTION that I have been doing daily for the last year - helping to win a medical marijuana initiative for patients in Oregon . . . and possibly elsewhere. Of course, A19 is not up to me but up to the voters of Colorado to decide (pending whether the votes will actually count or whether A19 is invalid because of a signature deficiency). I do sincerely wish to publicly thank those Coloradans who have written to thank me for my decision to make TV and radio ads supportive of A19. They far outnumber the types of responses from Mr. Barrus. I suppose I also should thank Laura Kriho for showing more restraint than Mr. Barrus because she called me on the phone and wrote to me privately rather than flaming me publicly on the 'net. Thank you Laura for your diplomacy even though you also vigorously disagree with my decision to make the ads. Finally, I wish to thank you Colorado for your support and please remember. . . this is not about rhetoric. . .this is about patients. . .and they need your support NOW. Sincerely, Rick Bayer, MD, FACP Board Certified, American Board of Internal Medicine Fellow, American College of Physicians - American Society of Internal Medicine mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.teleport.com/~omr
------------------------------------------------------------------- Oregon's Attorneys Offering To Settle - Family Takes Step Toward Suing City (According to The Houston Chronicle, attorneys for the family of Pedro Oregon Navarro, an innocent man shot to death by Houston prohibition agents who broke into his apartment without a warrant, said Thursday they would settle with the city for $35 million, or a smaller amount if the city agreed within 30 days to change police policies and procedures.)Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 11:57:11 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US TX: Oregon's Attorneys Offering To Settle Family Takes Step Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: GALAN@prodigy.net (G. A ROBISON) Pubdate: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 Source: Houston Chronicle (TX) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.chron.com/ Author: Steve Brewer OREGON'S ATTORNEYS OFFERING TO SETTLE FAMILY TAKES STEP TOWARD SUING CITY Attorneys for the family of a man killed by Houston police officers during a botched drug raid in July said Thursday they would settle their possible future civil claims against the city for $35 million. A smaller amount would be accepted if the city agrees within 30 days to change policies and procedures in the Houston Police Department that led to the death of Pedro Oregon Navarro, attorneys Richard Mithoff and Paul Nugent said in a letter sent Thursday to city officials. Mithoff, representing Oregon's family, said the letter served as the proper legal notification required before a lawsuit is filed. "At this time, it is impossible know or describe the full extent of the suffering caused by this horrendous killing and the other brutal acts of the police," said the letter, signed by Mithoff and Nugent. "Not only did Pedro Oregon Navarro, an innocent man, lose his life in a brutal and inhumane manner, but his two children have forever lost their father and his mother has forever lost her son." Oregon, 22, died July 12 in a hail of bullets fired by six officers following up on an informant's tip that drugs were being sold in Oregon's southwest Houston home. A shot fired by one officer hit another officer in his bullet-resistant vest and knocked him to the floor, police have said. The officers apparently thought the shot had come from Oregon, and they opened fire. They fired about 30 rounds, 12 of which hit Oregon. Nine struck him in the back, one in the back of the head, one in back of the shoulder and one in the back of the hand. All six officers are on paid suspensions. The case is being investigated by police internal affairs and a Harris County grand jury that's been hearing testimony and looking at evidence for more than six weeks. No drugs were found in the apartment and Oregon did not fire at police, though a gun was found in the apartment. Oregon also had no drugs or alcohol in his system. In their letter, Mithoff and Nugent not only gave conditions for settling any future state or federal litigation, but they also asked city officials to preserve all evidence from the investigation into the shooting and listed some of the witnesses who could be called to testify. City officials had little comment on the matter. "We have an internal-affairs investigation under way and the district attorney's office obviously has a grand jury investigation it is pursuing," said City Attorney Anthony Hall. "When we get all the facts established and get some indication of what they are, we'll take the appropriate action." Mayor Lee Brown, through spokesman Don Payne, echoed Hall, saying he will comment on the case only after all the inquiries are complete. Mithoff said late Thursday the training of the officers involved was shoddy and that he hopes the incident forces the police department to make significant changes. "These were officers with marginal training and they're out in the middle of the night illegally entering someone's home and shooting him 12 times in the back, and there's no evidence he had any drugs or illegal contraband," Mithoff said. Mithoff also said he feels that Oregon's relatives are not getting due consideration from the city or the legal system because of their race. "This is not the kind of thing that would happen in River Oaks," Mithoff said, referring to one of the city's richest neighborhoods. "If it did happen in River Oaks we would have probably seen an indictment before sundown, but because this happened in the Hispanic community it's being handled differently." The grand jury investigation has produced a steady stream of witnesses and small protests outside the courthouse since late August. The panel will resume its work on the case Oct. 19. Prosecutors have said there was a scheduling conflict with a member of the panel and all 12 grand jurors want to be present when a decision or vote is made on possible criminal charges. As a result, no testimony or evidence in the Oregon case will be shown to the panel next week. Copyright 1998 Houston Chronicle
------------------------------------------------------------------- Drug Unit Supervisors Admit Using Racial Slurs (The Chicago Tribune says Fredrick Guerra, a supervisor in an elite drug-enforcement unit, has continued to collect his $46,332 annual salary from the Cook County Sheriff's Police while his disciplinary hearing grinds through the system after he admitted eighteen months ago that he used racial and sexist slurs to refer to subordinates, informants and drug dealers and that he occasionally wore a black "Sambo" mask around the office. Several other supervisors in the Cook County Metropolitan Enforcement Group unit, including the deputy director, also were accused of running a unit in which blacks were routinely referred to in derogatory terms.) Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 12:42:55 -0700 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US IL: Drug Unit Supervisors Admit Using Racial Slurs Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Steve Young Source: Chicago Tribune (IL) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Section: Metro Chicago Website: http://www.chicago.tribune.com/ Pubdate: 9 Oct 1998 Author: Andrew Martin and John O'Brien DRUG UNIT SUPERVISORS ADMIT USING RACIAL SLURS Eighteen months ago, a supervisor in an elite drug-enforcement unit admitted that he used racial and sexist slurs to refer to subordinates, informants and drug dealers and that he occasionally wore a black "Sambo" mask around the office. But the supervisor, Fredrick Guerra, has continued to collect his $46,332 annual salary from the Cook County Sheriff's Police while his disciplinary hearing grinds through the system. Several other supervisors in the Cook County Metropolitan Enforcement Group unit, including the deputy director, also were accused of running a unit in which blacks were routinely referred to in derogatory terms. The allegations have been buried in a court file in the federal courthouse in Chicago for months, but they were revealed publicly this week by an attorney for two former MEG agents. The two are suing Cook County Sheriff Michael Sheahan and five MEG supervisors over the alleged harassment. The controversy has surfaced with less than a month before the general election for sheriff, prompting Sheahan, the Democratic incumbent, to call the timing politically motivated. "We did the right thing," Sheahan said. "We took appropriate action." Along with Guerra, the sheriff's office is seeking to fire Andy Dourvris, who like Guerra, has been allowed to continue to work at his annual salary, $64,228, during the disciplinary hearings. The sheriff's office could have suspended the men with or without pay but chose instead to reassign them to desk jobs. Nonetheless, sheriff's spokeswoman Sally Daly said investigators took the charges very seriously. "Our action in this case speaks for itself," she said. Andre Grant, an attorney for the plaintiffs, Yorli P. Huff and John D. Lewis Jr., denied that he released the documents for political reasons, saying he has nothing to do with the campaign of Sheahan's opponent, former Chicago Police Supt. LeRoy Martin. "No one is saying they shouldn't have due process," Grant said. "The issue is these guys have made these horrible racial slurs, and they are paying them to sit at a desk." Neither Guerra nor Dourvris could be reached for comment. At the center of the dispute is Huff, a 30-year-old African-American woman who was hired by Cook County Sheriff's Police in 1992 and assigned to the MEG unit to make undercover drug buys. Over the years, according to her supervisors' admissions to sheriff's investigators, she was derided as inept and called offensive names. Huff maintains that her career was damaged because she was an African-American woman. One MEG agent interviewed by sheriff's investigators said her bosses told her to make sure "that there were no watermelon seeds, chicken bones or Afro Sheen" in a car driven by Huff. Huff declined to be interviewed as did Lewis, a former MEG agent added to the suit in recent months. The MEG unit, created 27 years ago to combat low-level drug dealing, is made up of officers from the State Police, Sheriff's Police and suburban police departments. The controversy began in February 1997, when Huff filed a complaint with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. It found in her favor, and she filed her suit alleging discrimination. Sheriff's police launched their investigation after Huff filed her EEOC complaint, and they interviewed dozens of former and current MEG employees. In April 1997, Guerra admitted to sheriff's investigators that he often used racial slurs but that they were good-natured barbs, according to a transcript of his statement to the investigators released by Grant. "Being a minority myself, guys are constantly making fun out of Cheech and Chong stuff," he said. "And no big deal . . . . it wasn't done in a bad way, as a joke." Guerra also admitted wearing at the office an offensive, dark-skinned rubber mask with curly hair. The covering is described in the sheriff's investigative report as a "Sambo" mask. Guerra claimed white agents had used the mask on undercover operations in black neighborhoods "for safety reasons." He also told investigators that one of his supervisors, Dourvris, a MEG deputy director, commonly used a racial slur and referred to blacks as lazy, according to the transcript. In addition, he told investigators that another of his supervisors, his brother, Frank, an Illinois State Police trooper who worked for the MEG unit, also used racially offensive language in referring to Huff. Frank Guerra was reprimanded but no further disciplinary action is anticipated, a state police spokesman said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Fourth man indicted from RI Strike Force turns himself in (The Associated Press says Ronald House, a former agent with a disbanded Rhode Island prohibition squad who had been sought since Wednesday, pleaded innocent Friday to federal charges of fabricating evidence. Four men face charges of violating seven people's constitutional rights by fabricating evidence in drug cases.) From: "Bob Owen @ WHEN, Olympia" (email@example.com) To: "-News" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: Fourth man indicted from RI Strike Force turns himself in Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 20:13:40 -0700 Sender: email@example.com Fourth man indicted from Strike Force turns himself in Associated Press, 10/09/98 18:01 PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - The fourth man indicted from a disbanded state Strike Force pleaded innocent Friday to federal charges of fabricating evidence. Ronald House, a former agent with the strike force, had been sought since Wednesday, when a federal indictment naming him and three others was unsealed. House was released on $10,000 bond after appearing in federal court. He turned himself in Friday morning, when he was arrested. House told reporters outside the courthouse that he thinks the arrests are politically motivated. Tom Connell, spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office, did not immediately have details on where House was taken into custody. Two other agents - Michael McGreevy and Jonathan Cute - and paid informant Cesar Moreno were arrested Wednesday. McGreevy and Moreno pleaded innocent and were released on $10,000 bail by U.S. District Judge Robert Lovegreen, while Cute appeared in a court in Florida, where he now lives in Orlando, and was ordered to appear in court in Rhode Island on Oct. 21. The four men face charges of violating seven people's constitutional rights by fabricating evidence in drug cases. Attorney General Jeff Pine disbanded the strike force two years ago after allegations of wrongdoing surfaced.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Three Charged With Running 'Yuppie' Drug Ring (The Philadelphia Inquirer notes the arrests of a "mastermind" and two other people who allegedly operated a "yuppie" drug ring that sold cocaine and amphetamines in Center City and West and South Philadelphia. One of the suspects, Anna Cruz, is an editorial assistant at The Inquirer.) Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 10:01:14 -0700 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US PA: Three Charged With Running `Yuppie' Drug Ring Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Patrick Henry (firstname.lastname@example.org) Pubdate: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 Source: Philadelphia Inquirer (PA) Contact: Inquirer.Opinion@phillynews.com Website: http://www.phillynews.com/ THREE CHARGED WITH RUNNING `YUPPIE' DRUG RING They are accused of selling amphetamines and cocaine, found at an Inquirer worker's home. Prosecutors said yesterday they had arrested the mastermind and two other people who allegedly operated a "yuppie" drug ring that sold cocaine and amphetamines in Center City and West and South Philadelphia. One of the suspects, Anna Cruz, 44, an editorial assistant at The Inquirer, surrendered to authorities last week after the District Attorney's Office reported seizing seven kilograms of cocaine with a street value of $700,000; 700 pills of an amphetamine known as Ecstasy, valued at $17,500; and $16,000 in cash from her South Philadelphia apartment. Prosecutors said yesterday that they also confiscated $490,000 in suspected drug proceeds from bank accounts held jointly by Cruz and Joseph Edward Greco, 30, whom authorities identified as the head of the operation. The third suspect was identified as Jodie Scalise, 23. Detectives who searched an apartment in the Spring Garden section that Scalise shared with Greco found an AK-47 assault rifle and a Luger semiautomatic pistol, prosecutors said. Prosecutors described Greco as "a yuppie supplier" and said his clientele may have included students at colleges and universities in Philadelphia. George Mosee, deputy district attorney for narcotics, said a prospective buyer would contact Greco by beeper, punching in a telephone number and a code indicating the amount the customer wanted to buy. Mosee said Greco called back to arrange delivery. Scalise, according to prosecutors, helped arrange the deliveries. Prosecutors said Cruz profited from the operation but did not appear to have delivered drugs. Mosee said that Cruz and Scalise were both romantically involved with Greco and were both partners in the drug operation. Greco was arrested at 20th and Pine Streets Oct. 1 after he allegedly sold cocaine to an undercover detective. Scalise was arrested soon afterward at the apartment she and Greco shared at 1505 Green St. Cruz surrendered the next day. Greco and Cruz jointly own 1505 Green, an apartment building. Both their names appear on a lease for Cruz' apartment at 1100 S. Broad St. All three suspects are awaiting a preliminary hearing on felony charges of drug possession with intent to deliver, delivery of a controlled substance, and criminal conspiracy. If convicted, each could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison and fined $100,000. Greco was in custody, having failed to post $600,000 bail. Cruz was being held in lieu of $250,000 bail. Scalise, who is seven months pregnant with Greco's child, is free on $5,000 cash bail. Cruz has worked at The Inquirer since 1982 as an editorial assistant, a clerical and administrative position. Her attorney, Gregory J. Pagano, described her as "an upstanding person within her community." District Attorney Lynne M. Abraham has scheduled a news conference today to discuss the case. (c)1998 Philadelphia Newspapers Inc.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Higher Courts Must Debate Drug Laws (A staff editorial in The Centre Daily Times, in Pennsylvania, says a jury was right to convict retired Penn State professor Julian Heicklen of marijuana possession, but a higher court should seriously consider overturning the law. Clearly, the laws inspired by the War on Drugs are not working, because the drug problem persists and grows.)Date: Sun, 11 Oct 1998 15:19:05 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US PA: Editorial: Higher Courts Must Debate Drug Laws 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, 9 Oct 1998 Source: Centre Daily Times (PA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org FAX: (814) 238-1811 Mail: 3400 E. College Ave., State College, Pa. 16801 Copyright: (c) 1998 Nittany Printing and Publishing Co., Inc. Website: http://www.centredaily.com/ OUR VIEW HIGHER COURTS MUST DEBATE DRUG LAWS Julian Heicklen's quixotic attack on marijuana laws completed its first stage on Wednesday. His plea for aquittal on minor drug charges -- basically possession and use of marijuana -- was struck down by a Centre County jury, which wisely listened to President Judge Charles C. Brown Jr.'s charge: "Even if you don't like the law ... you must follow it." A lower court is not the place to deliberate the merits of the law -- its job is to decide whether the laws, as written, were broken or upheld. This jury had to consider the evidence in Heicklen's case and make a judgment based on that evidence. Heicklen's claims that the state's drug laws violate his constitutional freedoms will be for higher courts to decide, should the retired chemistry professor move ahead with plans to appeal the conviction. There, the courts will have to consider the issue as they have done so many times in the past -- do the dangers of drug use among children and adults outweigh the personal freedoms of individuals to have their vices? These are important questions, especially in light of some troubling developments in recent years regarding our nation's drug problem. However, these are not questions that will be answered in Centre County. The number of teens using drugs remains high, and their use of more powerful drugs like heroin and cocaine appears to be increasing. This is a serious concern. Drug use among children and adults can lead to serious health and social problems, problems which affect not only individuals, but their families and society as well. Just like alcohol abuse, drug abuse is a serious illness, and like any other illness, it needs to be controlled. Some anti-drug measures make sense -- such as funding for drug education programs in schools, increased police patrols in areas prone to drug-related crime and stiff sentences for dealers. Unfortunately, drugs have become a dangerous rhetorical crutch in our political process. A candidate with no real accomplishments or significant views on other issues can gain a lot of truck at election time by taking a generic "tough on drugs" stance, and enjoy success because few politicians would risk taking any stance that could be interpreted as supporting drug use. As a result, the legislatures and the courts have taken some steps that certainly go beyond getting "tough on drugs" and get into the realm of violating constitutional freedoms -- such as weakening search and seizure rules -- for the sake of political grandstanding. Clearly, the laws inspired by the War on Drugs are not working, because the drug problem persists and grows. But in the eyes of the local courts, they are still the laws, and must be enforced as such. It's unreasonable to think that such a huge issue will be resolved in a Centre County courtroom.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Bring Methadone Out Into The Open (A staff editorial in The Chicago Tribune says the announcement last week by General Barry R. McCaffrey that the federal government would facilitate the use of methadone to treat heroin addicts is a significant step toward a more realistic - and effective - drug policy, with a greater focus on treatment for those afflicted.) Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 12:22:13 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US IL: Editorial: Bring Methadone Out Into The Open Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Steve Young Pubdate: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 Source: Chicago Tribune (IL) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.chicago.tribune.com/ Section: Sec. 1 BRING METHADONE OUT INTO THE OPEN As the United States has tried to deal with the problem of drug addiction, metaphors often have gotten in the way. We've talked about wars, damnation and containment, while overlooking the fact that drug addiction, at its most fundamental, is a horrific physiological problem. The announcement last week by Gen. Barry R. McCaffrey, the country's drug policy director, that the federal government intends to facilitate the use of methadone to treat heroin addiction is a significant step toward a more realistic--and effective--anti-narcotics policy, with a greater focus on treatment of those afflicted. Methadone has been around since the 1960s and has been one of the most thoroughly researched and effective treatments for heroin addiction. Yet moral condemnations have kept it mostly in the nether world of inner-city drug clinics. Eight states, in fact, explicitly ban methadone clinics altogether, forcing addicts to travel elsewhere for treatment. Most recently, New York Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani took to the pulpit to preach against methadone clinics. He says the government should not be in the business of dispensing drugs to addicts and recommends that the estimated 36,000 heroin addicts enrolled in methadone programs in New York City just quit cold turkey. Giuliani's sanctimonious and ill-informed campaign has been roundly - and rightly - slammed. Heroin addiction is not just another annoying big-city habit, critics have pointed out, like littering in the subway or jaywalking across Madison Avenue. Attempts to break free from heroin immediately trigger intolerable cravings. Any semblance of a family life or career succumbs to the obsession to get the next fix, and crime almost always becomes the means to finance the ever more expensive addiction. Methadone, although it can be habit-forming, calms the cravings and often allows addicts to get jobs and stabilize their lives. During his announcement Sept. 29, McCaffrey cited recent studies showing that methadone reduced heroin use by 70 percent, while crime committed by addicts dropped by 57 percent and gainful employment increased by 24 percent. These are impressive results, both for the addicts and for society. They suggest that methadone ought to be prescribed by private physicians and hospitals for those who need it - like Prozac, insulin or other maintenance drugs - and emerge from the shadows of societal condemnation.
------------------------------------------------------------------- HEMPilation II's competition? (A bulletin from The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws says a new compact disc to benefit NORML will be released on Nov. 3, Election Day. The bulletin also includes a press release about "Lost Voices - The Songs of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison," a 15 song compilation of contemporary artists, scheduled for release Oct. 20 to benefit Phoenix House, the nation's leading non-profit drug treatment organization.)From: NATLNORML@aol.com Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 18:29:33 EDT To: "DRCTalk Reformers' Forum" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: HEMPilation.II's competition? Reply-To: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reformers: This should be a big seller?! Like Mitch Rosenthal and Phoenix House need the money...Unlike NORML, who will release HEMPilation.II on November 3rd, 1998 - ELECTION day! Strike a blow for freedom, listen to cool music and support marijuana law reform...please pick up a copy after November 3rd. NORML just got the artwork for the CD...the cover is a great photograph of a LEGAL Canadian hemp field. Gen. McCaffery, C. Delores Tucker & William Bennett are not going to be happy. :0) -NORML email@example.com *** For immediate release: publicity contact: Barbara Shelley/Liese Rugo (323) 653-1588, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org LOST VOICES: THE SONGS OF JIMI HENDRIX, JANIS JOPLIN AND JIM MORRISON BENEFITING THE DRUG TREATMENT & PREVENTION PROGRAMS OF PHOENIX HOUSE Release Date: October 20 Hammer & Lace Records/Polygram CD NO: (7)314 565 541-2 (9) ARTIST: VARIOUS Lost Voices: The Songs of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison, this 15 song album celebrates the artistic vision of these three legends with tracks from contemporary and up-and-coming artists, in an effort to raise awareness and funds for Phoenix House, the nation's leading non-profit drug abuse service organization and a pioneer in the development of modern drug abuse treatment. Lost Voices mourns the loss of what might have been. Had the sudden and tragic deaths of these three artists (all age twenty-seven and dead within an awful ten-month period between September 18, 1970 and July 3, 1971) not silenced Jimi, Janis and Jim, we might be celebrating almost thirty more years of marvelous musical development. Drugs and alcohol have caused tremendous pain and anguish to millions of Americans, including many in the recording industry. HAMMER & LACE RECORDS created Lost Voices especially for Phoenix House, in an effort to utilize the power of music to communicate Phoenix House's cross-generational message of support. Lost Voices follows on a previous HAMMER & LACE/MERCURY RECORDS album benefitting Phoenix House, the all-star Christmas collection titled "A Home for the Holidays," released last year. LOST VOICES INCLUDES: Top Contemporary Artists: The Pretenders, Echo & the Bunnymen, Concrete Blonde, Duran Duran, Billy Idol and Faith Hill. Also included are recent tracks recorded in 1997 by Etta James and Taj Mahal. Up-And-Coming Artists: Tyris, 19 year-old twin brothers performing an alternative-charged, hard-edged version of "Love Her Madly"; Phoenix, a New York native who provides an eerily seductive version of "Riders On The Storm"; and Mirinda James, holding her own beautifully in her rendition of "To Love Somebody." Bonus Track: "Voices Lost" - Singer/songwriter Spencer Nilsen delivers the poignant theme song "Voices Lost," an original composition that brilliantly captures the powerful emotions and sentiment of the CD. Founded in 1967, Phoenix House treats more than 3,000 adolescents and adults in outpatient and residential drug rehabilitation programs in New York, California and Texas. The American Council for Drug Education (ACDE) and the Children of Alcoholics Foundation (COAF), affiliates of Phoenix House, operate a wide array of substance abuse prevention and education programs on a national basis. These include 1-800-DRUG-HELP, the nation's only 24-hour, confidential drug help and referral line. The Phoenix House Mission: To reclaim disordered lives; encourage individual responsibility, positive behavior and personal growth; strengthen families and communities; safeguard public health; and promote a drug-free society through prevention, treatment, education and training, research and advocacy. Keeping with Phoenix House's mission to preserve America's youth and vitality through effective substance abuse education and treatment programs, the marketing focus of Lost Voices will be targeted at campuses nationwide, integrating with national outreach programs, including "Facts on Tap" - a college-based alcohol education effort. The Los Angeles-based founder/project producer Mark J. Fine, Senior Vice President/A&R Catalogue for PolyMedia chose the name HAMMER & LACE RECORDS to symbolize the strength of the label's convictions and its sensitivity to social causes. Pointing out how musical artistry can be a catalyst for meaningful change he notes, "Lyrics can take on renewed meaning in light of the issue being championed, serving as a prism through which awareness, care, and concern can be reflected. It's wonderful that talented musicians have stepped forward and are making a difference in peoples lives." -end-
------------------------------------------------------------------- Contra Drug Link Unveiled (The Associated Press says a 410-page declassified version of a report on the Contra-cocaine scandal by Inspector General L. Britt Snider of the Central Intelligence Agency was posted on the CIA's Web site late Thursday. Prompted by The San Jose Mercury News' "Dark Alliance" series, the study says the CIA failed to fully inform Congress and law enforcement agencies of reports that Nicaraguan Contras were involved in drug trafficking.) Date: Sat, 10 Oct 1998 11:13:40 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US: WIRE: Contra Drug Link Unveiled Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: General Pulaski Pubdate: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 Source: Associated Press Copyright: (c) 1998 Associated Press. All rights reserved. Author: John Diamond CONTRA DRUG LINK UNVEILED WASHINGTON (AP) -- The CIA failed to fully inform Congress and law enforcement agencies of reports that Nicaraguan Contras were involved in drug trafficking, according to a newly declassified agency study. While congressional oversight committees got some briefings during the U.S.-backed Contra wars of the 1980s, ``CIA did not inform Congress of all allegations'' linking Contras to drug trafficking, the CIA Inspector General L. Britt Snider concluded. ``No information has been found to indicate that any U.S. law enforcement entity or executive branch agency was informed by CIA of drug trafficking allegations'' concerning 11 Contra-related individuals who worked with the CIA, the report said. The 410-page declassified version of the report, posted on the CIA's Web site late Thursday, provides new insights into U.S. intelligence during the Reagan years as it aided the anti-Communist Nicaraguan Contra forces. Throughout those years, House and Senate Democrats -- then the majority party in Congress -- regularly questioned the CIA about persistent rumors that the Contras were trafficking in narcotics to finance their effort to overthrow the Sandinista government. In classified briefings on Capitol Hill, CIA officials typically acknowledged only one major case of narcotics involvement by an anti-Sandinista group -- the so-called ADREN 15th of September group, which had been disbanded in 1982. But the newly declassified report links to drug allegations 58 other individuals belonging to various Contra groups. For example, the CIA had information linking 14 pilots and two other individuals involved in transport to drug trafficking. In 1984, the CIA broke off contact with one member of the Contra Sandino Revolutionary Front linked to known drug trafficker Jorge Morales but ``continued to have contact through 1987-87 with four of the (other) individuals involved with Morales,'' the report said. In the fall of 1986 and all of 1987, Congress prohibited the Reagan administration from funding any Contra group with members known to be involved in drug smuggling. In response, the IG report says, the CIA did not investigate such allegations and thus avoided invoking the funding cutoff. At a time when CIA files contained numerous cases of suspected drug trafficking by Contra-connected individuals, Alan Fiers, then chief of the CIA's Central American Task Force, was telling the Senate Intelligence Committee in 1987, ``We have uncovered no indications that any of these individuals are involved or have been involved in narcotics trafficking.'' In 1988, Sens. John Kerry, D-Mass., and Claiborne Pell, D-R.I., were pressuring John Helgerson, the CIA's chief liaison to Congress, to produce information on alleged Contra drug activity. In a memo to senior CIA officials, Helgerson wrote, ``Realistically, we are likely to have to respond somehow -- fairly quickly -- to the Kerry and Pell requests regarding when we knew what.'' But Helgerson advised against passing on ``raw reporting or operational traffic'' to the lawmakers. The CIA apparently had allies on the Senate Intelligence Committee who ``were not 'taken' with the topic and were very frustrated by the tasking from Senators Kerry and Pell,'' the IG report said. Current CIA Director George Tenet and Inspector General Snider were then on the committee's staff. Then-acting CIA Director Robert Gates did try to get tough regarding contacts with drug traffickers. The IG report describes an April 9, 1987, memo from Gates to his operations chief, Clair George. Gates said it was ``absolutely imperative'' that the CIA and its Central American operatives ``avoid any kind of involvement with individuals or companies that are even suspected of involvement in narcotics trafficking.'' Apparently the memo never made it past George. ``No information has been found to indicate that this memorandum, in its entirety, was disseminated to anyone at CIA headquarters other than DDO George,'' the report states. This IG report grew out of a CIA inquiry following a newspaper series that alleged a connection between the agency and Contra-connected crack cocaine dealers. The CIA has disavowed any such connection, and the inspector general did as well in an earlier report.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Joe Camel Boosted Smoking In Teens (According to an Associated Press article in the New Bedford, Massachusetts, Standard-Times, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said yesterday that the number of American youths who took up smoking as a daily habit jumped 73 percent from Joe Camel's debut in 1988 to 1996. Without any additional evidence, the CDC said the cartoon character was "partly to blame" for kids' increased smoking, illustrating how even so-called scientists can confuse correlation with causation. One could just as reasonably blame the increase on the correlated expansion of the Drug Abuse Resistance Education program.) Date: Sat, 10 Oct 1998 07:03:44 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: Joe Camel Boosted Smoking In Teens Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org 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: 9 October, 1998 Author: Russ Bynum, Associated Press JOE CAMEL BOOSTED SMOKING IN TEENS ATLANTA -- The number of American youths taking up smoking as a daily habit jumped 73 percent between Joe Camel's debut in 1988 and 1996, the government said yesterday. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said tobacco ads that rely heavily on giveaways and kid-friendly cartoons are partly to blame. More than 1.2 million Americans under 18 started smoking daily in 1996, up from 708,000 in 1988, the CDC estimated. The rate at which teens became smokers also increased, climbing 50 percent. In 1996, 77 of every 1,000 nonsmoking teens picked up the habit. In 1988, the rate was 51 per 1,000. "It's terrible news," said Dr. Gary Giovino, chief epidemiologist for the CDC's Office on Smoking and Health. "There's a lot of important things to consider, which include the increase in tobacco ads that have a youth focus. The appearance of tobacco smoking in the media has just skyrocketed lately." A spokeswoman for R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. insisted that peer pressure and smoking parents are what drive most teens to smoke, not advertising. The industry has said it does not target teen-agers with its advertising. "It just doesn't make sense to say Joe Camel fueled youth smoking," spokeswoman Jan Smith said. "We have long said that campaign was aimed at adult smokers, period." The study was based on surveys of 78,330 Americans ages 12 to 66 conducted by the CDC between 1994 and 1997. Researchers extrapolated nationwide estimates from that sample. Those interviewed were asked if they ever had a daily smoking habit and if so when they started. They were also asked at what age they took their first puff. In calculations back to 1965, the CDC estimated that the rate for beginning smokers peaked in 1977, when 67 of every 1,000 potential smokers developed a habit. The lowest rate -- 44 per 1,000 -- was in 1983. Daily smoking rates begin increasing steadily again in 1988, the same year R.J. Reynolds introduced Joe Camel in its advertising for Camel cigarettes, the CDC said. "After Joe Camel was introduced, then the promotional-type strategies kicked in," rewarding smokers with coupons and trinkets that encouraged them to buy more cigarettes, Giovino said. "A lot of parents weren't aware of Camel cash and that stuff, but kids were." Joe Camel was retired last year, after critics including President Clinton said the character was a blatant example of cigarette marketing aimed at children. The CDC said its survey mirrored previous studies that estimated more than 3,000 Americans under 18 become habitual smokers each day. The agency also estimates 32 percent of smokers will die from smoking-related illnesses.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Technicality Kills Misconduct Charges (The Toronto Star says allegations of misconduct against six Toronto drug squad officers - including questionable strip searches and searching homes without warrants - were dismissed after the officers' lawyer argued it had taken too long to bring them to the internal discipline tribunal.) Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 11:33:01 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: Canada: Technicality Kills Misconduct Charges Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Dave Haans Source: Toronto Star (Canada) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.thestar.com/ Pubdate: Friday, October 9, 1998 Page: B1, B4 Author: Jim Rankin, Staff Reporter TECHNICALITY KILLS MISCONDUCT CHARGES Officers notified of police act hearing too late Serious allegations of police misconduct involving six Toronto drug squad officers - including questionable strip searches and searching homes without warrants - have been dismissed on a technicality. Superintendent Terry Kelly, a Toronto police officer who adjudicates hearings into charges under the Police Services Act, halted the case after the officers' lawyer, Harry Black, argued it had taken too long to bring the officers to the internal discipline tribunal. Black's argument was based on the provincial law governing police conduct. The Police Services Act says officers must be served with a notice of a hearing within six months of the complaint's facts first coming to the attention of the chief of police. Unlike criminal charges, police act charges must be laid and adjudicated within a set amount of time. The deadline in this case was missed by about two weeks. As a result of Kelly's decision to dismiss, delivered last week, evidence surrounding the allegations was not heard. The complaints stem from an October, 1997, arrest and detention of Toronto residents Memis Sipar and Arthur Christopoulou. Based on information from an unnamed informant that led police to believe Sipar was involved in cocaine trafficking, and after police surveillance, Sipar and Christopoulou were pulled over in separate vehicles on the afternoon of Oct. 28 and arrested. No drugs were found, yet both men were taken to central field command headquarters for questioning. The two men were strip-searched. Again, nothing was discovered. While police held the men and kept them from making phone calls, officers conducted searches of two addresses connected to Sipar - without obtaining proper warrants, a police complaints investigator would later find. Nothing turned up at those addresses either. Sipar was detained for six hours and was released without charges being laid. "The very essence of fundamental justice was denied" to the men, complaint investigator Detective William Nelson wrote in his summary of the probe into a complaint filed by Moishe Reiter a Toronto lawyer acting on behalf of Sipar. According to a witness statement in Nelson's investigative summary, this was the fourth time Sipar had been arrested, and not one of those arrests have ended in a conviction. In the three other arrests, charges were withdrawn. In his summary, dated April 27, Nelson found charges of discreditable conduct were warranted against Detective John Schertzer and Detective Constables Ned Maodus, Jonathon Reid, Gregory Forestall, Joseph Miched and Steve Correia. A complaint review officer agreed, and notices of a hearing were sent out to the officers and potential witnesses the next month. But that happened outside the six-month time limit. Evidence presented at the motion for dismissal showed the force was notified of the facts surrounding the complaint in a letter to the chief's office on Nov. 7, 1997. Notices of a hearing were not sent out until May 22 - about two weeks after the six-month window had closed. Kelly said in his decision that the limitation rule "must be considered mandatory, not merely a directive" and is a procedural step designed to "protect the position of the officer(s) subject to the investigation in relation to any proceedings which may be brought" against them. Kelly pointed to an exception to the rule: The force can ask the police services board for more time on certain investigations. But that wasn't done in this case, he noted. Police prosecutor Staff Inspector Tom Dalziel said he could not comment. The complainant has 30 days to appeal to the Ontario Civilian Commission on Police Services. The police watchdog agency has the power to order a full hearing.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Pro-Cannabis Campaigner Issues A Challenge (A letter to the editor of The Evening News in Norwich, England, rebuts a judge's contention that a burglar's troubles arose from cannabis use. The marijuana law reform advocate then asks the judge for the opportunity to present evidence by experts who would testify before him that pure cannabis is non-addictive, does not lead to hard drugs, is not toxic, does not a-motivate and does not significantly effect motor or cognitive skills.) Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 14:48:24 -0700 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: UK: PUB LTE: Pro-Cannabis Campaigner Issue A Challenge Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (CLCIA) Source: Evening News (Norwich, UK) Contact: EveningNewsLetters@ecn.co.uk Pubdate: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 Author: Jack Girling, Chairman, CLCIA Fax: 01603 628311 PRO-CANNABIS CAMPAIGNER ISSUE A CHALLENGE I'LL PROVIDE THE EVIDENCE TO JUDGE Sirs, His Honour Judge Paul Downes who branded cannabis as "dangerous" has now called on legalisation campaigners to take a close look after the latest case involving the drug. (Evening News, October 4.) The judge was dealing with the case of a man convicted of burglary, theft and possession of a Class A drug. The newspaper report said that the man "had been put into care at the age of seven...started taking drugs from the age of 14, starting off with cannabis, graduating to solvents and amphetamines and by the age of 24 moving on to heroin, methadone and cocaine." Where did his problems really start,with cannabis, in care, or before that? Clearly his crimes were due to his need to get cash to buy hard drugs from the illegal market where prices are high and quality low. It would do well to remember that all these problems occur under the present system of prohibition. To step from this man's problems to such a generalisation that cannabis is a dangerous drug is indeed a giant leap. Judge Downes must have read my last letter about cannabis. May I now take this opportunity of challenging him. If he, or anybody else, would like to organise the venue we would be pleased to bring along experts in cannabis to testify before him, that pure cannabis is non-addictive, does not lead to hard drugs, is not toxic, does not a-motivate and does not significantly detrimentally effect motor or cognitive skills. Yours sincerely, Jack Girling Chairman of the CLCIA Norwich
------------------------------------------------------------------- Drink Bigger Menace Than Drugs, Says Police Chief (The Scotsman says drugs tsar Keith Hellawell was yesterday forced to defend government policy as the chief constable of Fife warned that alcohol was a greater menace in Scottish society.) Date: Fri, 9 Oct 1998 11:59:01 -0700 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: Scotland: Drink Bigger Menace Than Drugs, Says Police Chief 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, 9 Oct 1998 Source: Scotsman (UK) Contact: Letters_ts@scotsman.com Website: http://www.scotsman.com/ Author: James Rougvie and Robert Tate DRINK BIGGER MENACE THAN DRUGS, SAYS POLICE CHIEF THE Government's drugs tsar, Keith Hellawell, was yesterday forced to defend Government policy as Fife's chief constable warned alcohol was a greater menace in Scottish society. During the launch of a drive to raise awareness of alcohol problems with school-age teenagers, Chief Constable James Hamilton said alcohol abuse was a far greater problem than drug abuse. Its effects were spread over several decades in contrast to the short-term effects of drugs. Last week, Henry McLeish, the Scottish home affairs minister, said drug abuse was the greatest evil facing society. On a visit to Erskine yesterday, Mr Hellawell, the former West Yorkshire chief constable who has been appointed UK Coordinator of the Government's anti-drugs strategy, insisted that alcohol had not been excluded from his remit. The direction of the Government's campaign had been strongly challenged earlier by Fife police and health workers, who claimed that drink was a greater menace with a disproportionate amount of resources applied to fighting drug abuse. They said that politicians should take the responsibility for placing alcohol much higher on the agenda and putting its dangers on the same footing as illegal drugs. There were 19 deaths in Fife last year with a direct link to alcohol while eight people died through abuse of recreational drugs. It has been estimated there are 44,000 deaths in the UK each year attributable to alcohol, but this figure does not include deaths which may have had a root cause in alcohol such as strokes or accidents. Deaths due to liver disease caused by alcohol rose by two thirds in the decade to 1994 and the mortality rate from that cause doubled among 15 to 44 year-olds in the same period. Mr Hellawell, who was attending a drugs conference, agreed that alcohol was closely tied in with the drug problem. "If you look at the estimated 20,000 people being treated in England, about 55 per cent of them are addicted to heroin. The remainder are addicted to legally prescribed drugs. The links between alcohol and drugs and tobacco and drugs are quite substantial." He added that there was growing evidence of links between cannabis, alcohol and mental health. Earlier, Mr Hamilton had criticised parents for introducing children to alcohol on festive or social occasions, pointing out such an attitude to drug-taking would be unthinkable. Ann Patrick, a Fife chief inspector, said teenagers had been getting mixed messages about drugs because alcohol seemed to have been forgotten. "There is certainly more crime on a Friday and Saturday night caused by alcohol than through drugs, whether it is breach of the peace, assault or vandalism." Bill Miller, Fife senior-health promotion officer, said tobacco was the biggest killer and alcohol came second before drug abuse. He said: "Alcohol is a drug and it should be placed on exactly the same footing as other drugs." The emotional and psychological damage done to families by an alcohol abuser had never been taken into account, despite the fact that the NHS spent between UKP150 million and UKP2 billion treating the effects of alcohol abuse each year, he added. Janice Munro, an alcohol development officer, said that drug agencies now outnumbered groups set up to combat alcohol abuse, adding: "There is a disproportionate amount of money being spent fighting drug abuse .. There seems to be a national strategy for drugs but none for alcohol."
------------------------------------------------------------------- The Week Online with DRCNet, Issue No. 62 (The Drug Reform Coordination Network's original summary of drug policy news and calls for action, including - DRCNet Needs Your Help; "Drug Crazy" Goes to Second Printing; Harm Reduction Conference in Cleveland; New Law Denies Student Loans to Non-Violent Drug Offenders; Judge Dismisses Charges in George Singleton Case; Oregon Initiatives; Peter McWilliams Sues Attorney General for Failure to Enforce Proposition 215; and Editorial - Reality vs. Demagoguery) Date: Fri, 09 Oct 1998 13:39:06 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: DRCNet (email@example.com) Subject: The Week Online with DRCNet, Issue No. 62 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org The Week Online with DRCNet, Issue No. 62 -- October 9, 1998 A Publication of the Drug Reform Coordination Network -------- PLEASE COPY AND DISTRIBUTE -------- (To sign off this list, mailto: email@example.com with the line "signoff drc-natl" in the body of the message, or mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org 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/062.html.) PERMISSION to reprint or redistribute any or all of the contents of The Week Online is hereby granted. We ask that any use of these materials include proper credit and, where appropriate, a link to one or more of our web sites. If your publication customarily pays for publication, DRCNet requests checks payable to the organization. If your publication does not pay for materials, you are free to use the materials gratis. In all cases, we request notification for our records, including physical copies where material has appeared in print. Contact: Drug Reform Coordination Network, 2000 P St., NW, Suite 615, Washington, DC 20036, (202) 293-8340 (voice), (202) 293-8344 (fax), e-mail email@example.com. Thank you. TABLE OF CONTENTS 1. DRCNet Needs Your Help http://www.drcnet.org/wol/062.html#supportdrc 2. Drug Crazy Goes to Second Printing http://www.drcnet.org/wol/062.html#drugcrazy 3. Harm Reduction Conference in Cleveland http://www.drcnet.org/wol/062.html#cleveland 4. New Law Denies Student Loans to Non-Violent Drug Offenders http://www.drcnet.org/wol/062.html#noloans 5. Judge Dismisses Charges in George Singleton Case http://www.drcnet.org/wol/062.html#singleton 6. Oregon Initiatives http://www.drcnet.org/wol/062.html#oregon 7. Peter McWilliams Sues Attorney General for Failure to Enforce Proposition 215 http://www.drcnet.org/wol/062.html#lungrensued 8. EDITORIAL: Reality vs. Demagoguery http://www.drcnet.org/wol/062.html#editorial *** 1. DRCNet Needs Your Help With our number of subscribers approaching 7,200 and our staffing situation finally coming together, DRCNet needs your support and participation now more than ever to help build DRCNet and the movement to new heights. We are soon embarking on a major effort to recruit thousands of paying members and tens of thousands of e-mail subscribers, to build this network into a major force for social change. Your membership dues or additional donation will enable us to increase the size and impact of our outreach efforts; and even more, will give our major donors the confidence to invest further in the organization. And your letters written to Congress, legislatures and the media, and other actions taken in response to our action alerts, reported to us at firstname.lastname@example.org, will send a message to politicians that business as usual isn't going to work anymore in drug policy, and that they had better start legislating more rationally or will face mounting criticism of their failing drug war. Donate $35 or more to DRCNet, and you will receive a free copy of "Shattered Lives, Portraits from America's Drug War," the new photojournalistic volume depicting the human side of our tragic laws and providing an overview of the basic issues at stake. (Visit http://www.hr95.org to see more of what this important new book is about.) To donate, use our form at https://www.drcnet.org/cgi-shl/drcreg.cgi (encrypted transmission, especially for credit card donations), or http://www.drcnet.org/cgi-shl/drcreg.cgi (no encryption, recommended you print it out and mail in with a check), or just send your check or money order to: DRCNet, 2000 P St., NW, Suite 615, Washington, DC 20036. Please note that contributions to DRCNet are not tax-deductible. If you wish to contribute beyond the basic membership dues and are looking to make a deductible gift, you can support our educational work through a tax-deductible donation to the DRCNet Foundation. (You can also purchase Shattered Lives from us for $23 including shipping, sales tax added for District of Columbia residents.) The more than 550 of you who have signed up for the eyegive online fundraising program are collecting earning DRCNet several thousands dollars a year. Thank you! If you don't know about eyegive, point your browser to http://www.eyegive.com/html/ssi.cfm?CID=1060 to find out. The sign-up bonus is temporarily at $2, so just signing up right now is a great way to help out DRCNet! If you've signed up but not kept up, you can make it easy by selecting http://www.eyegive.com as your browser's home page. You can earn valuable dollars for the cause, just by pointing and clicking on the eyegive home page whenever you feel like it, up to fives times a day. And yes, we have gotten checks from them, in the right amounts, it's legit! *** 2. Drug Crazy Goes to Second Printing Just a few months from its official release, Mike Gray's "Drug Crazy: How We Got Into This Mess and How We Can Get Out," published by Random House, has entered its second printing. Your efforts in asking about Drug Crazy in your local bookstores have played a significant role in making this first stage of the book's promotion a success. Keep up the activity! Call your local bookstores, both chains and independent stores, and just ask if they are carrying this book. Even better is to go out and buy it. Drug Crazy has been reviewed by Federal Judge John L. Kane, Jr., among others, and is an extremely persuasive overview of the issue that is accessible by the popular audience. Helping Drug Crazy go big will help turn the tide in the drug policy debate -- just last month we met someone who had read the book and whose mind had been made up by what she read there. Drug Crazy's appendix provides a host of Internet resources, very prominently featuring DRCNet, so helping the book will help grow the movement too. You CAN make a difference. Read more about Drug Crazy at http://www.drugcrazy.com, and find more links to reviews of the book and other discussions at http://www.drcnet.org/wol/057.html#slate. *** 3. Harm Reduction Conference in Cleveland This week (10/6-10) activists, health care workers, researchers, former and current drug users, people living with AIDS and HIV and public health officials from across North America gathered in Cleveland, Ohio for the second annual Harm Reduction Coalition conference. This diverse group discussed such issues as syringe exchange, HIV services and prevention, drug treatment, housing issues and the further development of policy initiatives which can reduce the harms associated with substance use and society's responses to it. Proponents of harm reduction point to real world successes, such as the low rates of HIV among injection drug users and their families in parts of the world which adopted syringe exchange early, as well as the proportionately large numbers of people who enter treatment as the result of being brought into stable systems, rather than being chased underground by punitive policies designed to punish, rather than help people in need. Allan Clear, Executive Director of the Harm Reduction Coalition, told The Week Online, "One of our goals in holding this conference is to bring together a wide assortment of constituencies who are impacted by substance use and by drug policy, either in their work or in their lives. The conference provides a wonderful learning experience and has led, we believe, to better communication and more effective advocacy on all fronts. "It is especially significant that we have city and state health officials from all over America in attendance, as they, more than the politicians in Washington, are really on the front lines. They see the shortcomings in our current policies, they see what works, what impact AIDS and other diseases have had on their cities and their budgets, and they are interested in being part of rational solutions. The rhetoric is all well and good until you are confronted by the actual human beings who are impacted. Everyone here has an overarching concern for public health and for community health and for reducing the destruction that we see all around us. I think that it's wonderful that the harm reduction movement has gained so much momentum here, as America has lagged so far behind much of the rest of the developed world in really addressing these issues in a pragmatic and effective way." (Day-by-day conference newsletters will be posted online at http://www.drcnet.org/hrc-cleveland/ available sometime Friday afternoon. The Harm Reduction Coalition can be found on the web at http://www.harmreduction.org.) *** 4. New Law Denies Student Loans to Non-Violent Drug Offenders A provision in the Higher Education Act of 1998, which was signed into law by President Clinton this week, will deny student loans to college students convicted of drug offenses. Under the new provision, students who are convicted of drug possession will face a one-year suspension of federal student aid. A second offense will result in a two year suspension, and loans will be denied "indefinitely" upon a third conviction. The language permits a student to regain eligibility before the suspension period expires if he or she completes a drug rehabilitation program and tests negative for drugs twice over a six month period. Congressman Mark Souder (R-IN), who sponsored the initial house bill and added the drug testing requirements, said last May that he hopes the law "will encourage all young people with plans for college and the opportunities it provides to avoid drugs or to get help if they are already using them. You can't learn if your mind is clouded by drugs. By passing our language as part of the Higher Education bill, the House has expressed its commitment to help identify students who are in trouble with drugs, hold them accountable for their actions and give them an opportunity for a productive, drug-free future." But Rob Stewart, a spokesman for the Drug Policy Foundation in Washington, DC, says that the provision is unfair in that it singles out drug offenders for special punishment. "If someone can serve time for other more serious offenses, such as murder or robbery, and still be eligible for a student loan, then it is discriminatory to deny the same privilege to the non-violent drug offender who has served time or paid the fine," he told DRCNet. Stewart also fears the law will have a disproportionately negative effect on minorities, because African-Americans, while they make up 13% of all illegal drug users, make up 55% of convictions for drug possession. "The targeting of minority communities by drug enforcement will inevitably result in few African-Americans and Latinos in receiving financial aid." Stewart also said that requiring offenders to complete drug rehab and undergo testing arbitrarily interferes with an individual's privacy. He said, "It has not been established that someone who is arrested and convicted for possession has a drug problem at all, other than the fact that they broke the law. It certainly does not prove that they are incapable of learning or participating in a college or university." "The government wants to 'send the right message,'" he told DRCNet, "and say that drug use is wrong. But they are ultimately sending the message that the government is willing to violate individual rights and to bar people from bettering themselves." *** 5. Judge Dismisses Charges in George Singleton Case Last Friday, a judge in Craig County, Oklahoma dismissed the case against George Singleton, a Vermont man who was arrested while driving through the county last February. Singleton was charged with driving under the influence of intoxicants, when a state trooper who had pulled him over seized a bag of what he thought was marijuana from Singleton's car. The substance turned out to be a combination of legal herbs Singleton uses to treat his tuberculosis, and blood samples taken from Singleton at the time of his arrest revealed no trace of any known intoxicants. The prosecution stood by the trooper's written report that Singleton had appeared intoxicated, but the judge dismissed the case based on the lack of corroborating evidence. Singleton spent 25 days in an Oklahoma jail following his arrest, when he was unable to post bail. (See http://www.drcnet.org/wol/061.html#dwd for more background, as well as Adam Smith's editorial on the DRCNN radio show at http://www.drcnet.org/drcnn/dl28/100298drcnn2.ram -- Real Audio required.) *** 6. Oregon Initiatives - Bear Wilner With Election Day less than four weeks away, the official state Voters' Pamphlet has been mailed to all Oregonians. As in many states, this document contains the ballot questions and full texts of all initiatives and referenda. In addition, there are explanatory statements for each measure, which are drafted by committees with members taken from both sides of the issue at hand. One distinctive aspect of Oregon's pamphlet, though, is the fact that for $300, individuals or groups may purchase half- page segments in order to run statements supporting or opposing the measures of their choice. These statements are not censored or edited by the state. With the marijuana- related Measures 57 and 67 on this Fall's ballot, every household in Oregon is being exposed to what turns out to be a fairly thoughtful debate on drug policy. This is nearly unprecedented in United States history, and for the No on 57 and Yes on 67 campaigns, the cost of the advertising pales before its true value. Opponents of drug policy reform have long sought to deny the basic legitimacy of re-examining the status quo. With a platform like the Oregon Voters' Pamphlet, the issues can at last be examined on their merits. *** 7. Peter McWilliams Sues Attorney General for Failure to Enforce Proposition 215 AIDS patient and recent cancer survivor Peter McWilliams filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles this week, requesting that the Superior Court order California Attorney General Lungren to uphold his Oath of Office and fulfill his duties under the California Constitution concerning Proposition 215. The suit asks for no monetary damages, but asks the judge to instruct Attorney General Lungren, the Republican candidate for Governor, to fulfill his Oath of Office to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of California against all enemies, foreign and domestic." The suit charges Lungren with four breaches of the California Constitution: 1. The California Constitution, Article III Section 3.5 (c) states: "An administrative agency...has no power... (c) To declare a statute unenforceable, or to refuse to enforce a statute on the basis that federal law or federal regulations prohibit the enforcement of such statute unless an appellate court has made a determination that the enforcement of such statute is prohibited by federal law or federal regulations." No such determination has been made to date. 2. The California Constitution, Article III Section 3 states: "The powers of state government are legislative, executive, and judicial. Persons charged with the exercise of one power may not exercise either of the others except as permitted by this Constitution." The suit argues that Lungren overstepped his executive-branch duties and acted both judicially and legislatively by giving his own extremely narrow and limited interpretation of Proposition 215 the full force of law. 3. The California Constitution, Article V Section 13 states: "It shall be the duty of the Attorney General to see that the laws of the State are...adequately enforced." The lawsuit argues that Lungren has inadequately enforced Prop. 215, now the California Health and Safety Code Section 11362.5, which is meant "To ensure that seriously ill Californians have the right to obtain and use marijuana for medical purposes... To ensure that patients and their primary caregivers who obtain and use marijuana for medical purposes upon the recommendation of a physician are not subject to criminal prosecution or sanction... To encourage the federal and state governments to implement a plan to provide for the safe and affordable distribution of marijuana to all patients in medical need of marijuana." 4. The California Constitution, Article V Section 13, states: "It shall be the duty of the Attorney General to see that the laws of the State are uniformly... enforced." The lawsuit compares Lungren's vigorous defense of affirmative- action-ending Prop. 209, which AG Lungren personally supported, with his open suppression of Prop. 215, a bill he opposed, which passed in the same election. McWilliams is calling for the impeachment of Attorney General Lungren, based on the allegations in the lawsuit. A web site with further information has been established at http://www.lungrendoyourduty.com. Press inquiries should be directed to Ed Hashia at (213) 650-9571 x125. *** 8. EDITORIAL: Reality vs. Demagoguery To hear some politicians tell it, the phrase "harm reduction" is a smokescreen, a code word for a malevolent plot to make heroin available at candy counters and to gain popular acceptance for drug addiction as a way of life. But don't try getting away with such rhetoric in Cleveland this week, as a broad array of health care officials, researchers, treatment professionals and activists gather for the second annual conference of the Harm Reduction Coalition. As politicians in statehouses and in Washington fall over each other to pass legislation which will earn them the mantle of "tough on drugs," local health officials, who have to deal with the real costs of those policies, are finding that the harm reduction movement is providing practical and economically sound strategies for dealing with real problems. Long accepted in most of Europe as a pragmatic approach, harm reduction is finally becoming normalized on the streets, and in the health departments of cities across America. Harm reduction is a philosophy which says, "If people are going to use substances, be they legal, like alcohol or illegal like heroin, it is in the interest of both the community and the individuals affected to reduce the harms associated with that use." This includes allowing IV drug users access to clean syringes to prevent the spread of devastating diseases like AIDS and Hepatitis C, referral services for health care and drug treatment, information on the effects of drugs and on the various methods of administration, overdose prevention, housing and employment services, and much more. Harm reduction seeks to keep people alive and healthy so that they may live to get their lives together. Politicians who have made careers out of demonizing and persecuting unpopular minorities such as drug users see a problem with the approach. One Republican congressman, addressing needle exchange, said that since AIDS was a potential consequence of sharing syringes, it would be wrong to try to mitigate the chances of AIDS, and to thereby remove a disincentive to use drugs. Harm reductionists, of course, don't have the luxury of pontificating from an office on Capitol Hill. They see the ravages of AIDS first- hand, and they are determined to see that methods of preventing its spread are implemented among the populations they work with. Diana McCague is one of the attendees this week in Cleveland. She was recently arrested, for the second time, for running a needle exchange program in New Jersey in violation of state law. "People are using drugs" she said recently, "and although it would be great if they'd all stop, the fact is that many can't, or are not ready to face their addiction. It boggles my mind that we would rather pretend that this isn't the case than to prevent them from contacting and spreading deadly diseases. Outlawing clean needles is little more than state-assisted suicide. That is essentially what New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman is practicing. These people don't want to die. Doesn't it make sense to draw them into healthy contact with health workers rather than push them further underground where they are harming not only themselves but the community as well?" While it is deeply saddening that politicians, plying their trade far from the realities of the streets, have labeled McCague and others like her as criminals and deviants, it is heartening that local officials, on the front lines, are showing up to conferences like the one in Cleveland. Harm reduction is indeed being practiced in the US, and the numbers of its proponents are growing. Politicians, by their nature, are followers. Very few of the creative and effective solutions to real-world problems are handed down from on-high. Most bubble up from the trouble-spots themselves. Harm reduction, the efforts of community-based organizations to ameliorate the damage caused by substance abuse and by the drug war, is certainly no different. "If drug use is illegal," the politicians ask, "then why would we allow drug users to have syringes?" And from the comfort of the rotunda, that question seems legitimate. But ask a harm reductionist, someone who has seen the devastation and who is working to do something about it, someone who cares deeply about life and believes in the possibilities for positive change, and they will tell you just how ridiculous that question really is. "It's simple," says McCague, "dead addicts don't recover." Adam J. Smith Associate Director *** DRCNet needs your support! Donations can be sent to 2000 P St., NW, Suite 615, Washington, DC 20036, or made by credit card at http://www.drcnet.org/drcreg.html. Donations to the Drug Reform Coordination Network are not tax-deductible. 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