------------------------------------------------------------------- Corrections budget turns toward crime prevention (The Oregonian admits the biennial budget for Oregon corrections submitted by Governor John "Prisons" Kitzhaber is up almost 21 percent from the last biennium, but it characteristically refuses to print the actual figure. Kitzhaber wants to save money by nullifying the prisoner-work law passed by voters, but he won't rock the boat by ignoring the older and more ridiculous laws that oblige the state to spend more than $26 billion to lock up all the illegal-drug users in Oregon.) The Oregonian letters to editor: email@example.com 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Fax: 503-294-4193 Web: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Corrections budget turns toward crime prevention Wednesday, December 2 1998 By Michelle Roberts of The Oregonian staff A windfall for juvenile crime prevention, a disappointment for the Oregon State Police and a gouge to the program charged with putting the state's prisoners to work is contained in Gov. John Kitzhaber's proposed budget. The proposal would grant $30 million to finance the High Risk Juvenile Crime Prevention Partnership, staffed by the state Criminal Justice Commission. Under the program, $19 million would go directly to counties to target high-risk children in an effort to "keep our children out of trouble in the first place," Kitzhaber said. "This would give each county the ability to develop its own strategy." The governor also vowed to seek an additional $20 million for alcohol and drug prevention and $7 million for early childhood intervention. The strong focus on prevention coincided with a shift away from heavy funding for the Oregon Department of Corrections. In a move Kitzhaber called "controversial," general fund support for inmate work programs would be cut from $14.4 million to $9 million. The reduction would cut 40 work crew supervisors, reducing the number of inmates who could work outside prison walls. Kitzhaber acknowledged the cut would reduce compliance with Measure 17, a constitutional amendment overwhelmingly approved by voters four years ago that ordered all eligible inmates to work. Kitzhaber said he would not propose additional general funds to support inmate work until the Legislature addresses how much and for how long the measure should be subsidized. Measure backers had anticipated the program would be self-supporting. Kitzhaber also expressed concern that inmate work was hurting private business by creating competition for jobs. The overall corrections budget request increased almost 21 percent from the last biennium to cover inflation and prison expansion. But some projects, including construction of a women's prison and intake center at the former Dammasch State Hospital in Wilsonville, were delayed. "It's a no-frills budget, but we can certainly live with it," said Jim Lockwood, a spokesman for the Corrections Department. Kitzhaber amended his campaign budget, which promised 100 new troopers to patrol Oregon roadways, offering only 25 new trooper positions to the agency. "This is not adequate," Kitzhaber said. "My intention is that when we come out of the legislative session, the numbers will be significantly higher." Kitzhaber also said he would support moving the Oregon State Police budget to the highway trust fund, where more money would be available. That would require voters to amend the state constitution. State Police had requested 220 new troopers after it conducted a resource gap analysis showing that the agency was short more than 500 troopers.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Sonny Bono (Three letters to the editor of The Los Angeles Times comment on allegations by the widow of the late Congressman and pop singer that his death may have been attributable to his abuse of prescription painkillers.) Date: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 16:59:03 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US CA: PUB LTE: (3) Sonny Bono.... Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield Pubdate: December 2, 1998 Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Fax: 213-237-4712 Copyright: 1998 Los Angeles Times. Author: (1) JIM ROSENFIELD, (2) PHILLIP SHELTON, (3) ROBERT SCHMIDT SONNY BONO Regarding the sad death of Sonny Bono and the revelation that he had a secret problem with addiction (Nov. 20), perhaps he would be alive now if he could have been more open about the problem. In contrast to his youthful persona, Bono showed his intelligence and competence as a congressman, powers he could have brought to bear on his problem, if he did not have to hide from the hysterical zero-tolerance regime. In a climate of compassion, he could have sought help, possibly avoiding his collision with the reality of our shame-based attitude toward drugs. No amount of punishment and prison is going to solve the real problem, and we now have one of the world's highest incarceration rates, mostly for drug "crimes." JIM ROSENFIELD Culver City *** Never did I think that I would come to the defense of Sonny Bono. For 30 years the poor guy suffers pain from a bad back, then he center punches a tree and is killed. Then his wife disses him in death. What was he supposed to do about his bad back for 30 years? PHILLIP SHELTON Redondo Beach *** So Bono may have been on drugs when he died. And his mood swings were so bad his wife almost left him. So much for the pundits who called him an American hero and the incarnation of the Founding Fathers. ROBERT SCHMIDT Culver City
------------------------------------------------------------------- The Main Thing (An emotional staff editorial in The Fort Worth Star-Telegram recommends that parents ignore calls for drug policy reform. Kids are dying of heroin, so we have to ratchet up the drug war even more - as if that's worked in the past.) From: adbryan@ONRAMP.NET Date: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 08:36:41 -0600 (CST) Subject: EDITORIAL: The Main Thing To: "DRCTalk Reformers' Forum" (email@example.com) Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Try to keep your tone civil when responding to this editorial. We do have an ally or two at this paper. The DPFT-L list has had a discussion over the use of the "L" word. For newbies to these lists or for those who have not read it, I highly recommend Cliff Schaffer's "Persuasive Strategies." Read what is said there and adapt it to your style. http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/ACTIVIST/persuas.htm *** 12-2-98 Fort Worth Star-Telegram http://www.startelegram.com email@example.com The Main Thing Star-Telegram editorial It comes as a surprise -- a jarring surprise. It comes just when the message is sinking in with parents across the Metroplex that there is an alarming problem of young people using very dangerous drugs. Many of these young people are dying from heroin overdoses. It comes just when parents decide to act. They are worried, yet determined to protect their families. They go to public forums sponsored by police and school officials to learn more about the problem, the drugs, and how to talk to their kids about the terrible dangers of drug abuse. Then comes the surprise: Someone stands up at the forum to voice a very different message -- that people should have more open access to drugs. That the fight against currently illegal drugs is futile. That drug use should be "decriminalized" and treated as a medical issue, not a police matter. It's a message from a group with a political goal -- a radical change in our current fight against drugs -- and its first hurdle is to get attention. The group has chosen to try to draw notice by speaking out at gatherings of people who have become alarmed at the extent of drug abuse in our communities. The shock should not get in the way of the fight. The effort to decriminalize drugs is but a sideshow. It should not distract parents from the main event: We have to find ways to keep dangerous drugs out of our kids' hands. The way we do that is to come to know the problem that we face: that there are drugs in our communities that are killers. We have to get our kids to realize the danger and the waste of precious human energy brought on by drug abuse. It's not a matter of criminal or decriminal. It's a matter of life and death. Send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
------------------------------------------------------------------- Drug War (Another staff editorial in The Forth Worth Star-Telegram says the attempt to mount a coordinated police effort against drug traffic across Northeast Tarrant County, Texas, is crumbling. It still exists, but only a handful of communities are participating. The problem isn't money - it's people.) Date: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 08:00:48 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US TX: Editorial: Drug War Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: DrugSense Source: Ft. Worth Star-Telegram (TX) Copyright: 1998 Star-Telegram Pubdate: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 Section: Star-Telegram editorial Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.star-telegram.com/ DRUG WAR The attempt to mount a coordinated police effort against drug traffic across Northeast Tarrant County is crumbling. It still exists, but only a handful of communities are participating. And just when the drug world is growing stronger and claiming more victims, the agency that was put together to lead drug law enforcement in our communities has gotten weaker. The Northeast Tarrant County Drug Task Force is part of the 11-year-old Tarrant County Narcotics Intelligence and Coordination Unit. It was set up to unite drug-fighting efforts by police in 11 cities: Bedford, Colleyville, Euless, Grapevine, Haltom City, Hurst, Keller, North Richland Hills, Richland Hills, Southlake and Watauga. Three other federal and state drug task forces are in the area, but the Northeast Tarrant County unit has been expected to lead most area drug investigations. Support for the unit has dwindled. The problem is not money -- that comes mostly from grants -- but people. Only six cities -- Bedford, Euless, Grapevine, Haltom City, Hurst and Watauga -- have officers assigned to the unit, giving it six full-time investigators working cases in the 11-city area. North Richland Hills this week withdrew the officer it had assigned to the unit, deciding instead to set up a three-officer drug fighting team within its own police force. Drug traffic in Northeast Tarrant County does not respect city limits. It is essential that police efforts against it be coordinated, with information shared and no duplication of effort. The Northeast Tarrant County Drug Task Force could provide that coordination. If that is not to be, then area police officials must unite to find a better way.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Alcohol And Ignorance (A letter to the editor of The Times Journal, in Cobleskill, New York, notes the Partnership for a Drug-Free America and the White House drug czar's office focus their advertising dollars on marijuana, which never killed anyone. Meanwhile, they ignore the harm to young people attributable to ignorance about alcohol. For example, Michigan State University student Bradley McCue recently died on his 21st birthday from acute alcohol poisoning, after drinking 24 shots of liquor in less than two hours.) Date: Sun, 6 Dec 1998 18:21:38 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US NY: PUB LTE: Alcohol And Ignorance Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Pubdate: 2 Dec 1998 Source: Times Journal (Cobleskill, NY) FAX: 518-234-7898 ALCOHOL AND IGNORANCE Recently, Michigan State University student Bradley McCue, who was celebrating his 21st birthday, died from acute alcohol poisoning after drinking 24 shots of liquor in less than two hours. Bradley McCue may have been poisoned by alcohol, but it was ignorance that killed him. The Partnership for a Drug Free America is well aware that alcohol is the most widely tried drug among teenagers, but their numerous anti-drug advertisements are fixated on marijuana. Drug Czar Barry McCaffrey acknowledges that "alcohol is . . . responsible for more damage in our society than any other drug on the street," But, the Office of National Drug Control Policy prefers to demonize adult marijuana use, while ignoring teenage boozers. Junior and senior high school students drink 35 percent of all wine coolers sold in the U.S.; they also consume 1.1 billion cans of beer. 87 percent of high school seniors have used alcohol; in comparison, 63 percent have smoked cigarettes; 32 percent have used marijuana, and only 6 percent have used cocaine. Alcohol-related motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death and disability among American teenagers. In 1998 Congress gave the ONDCP and the Partnership for a Drug Free America $195 million to run a new national anti-drug media campaign -- a campaign that conspicuously avoids mentioning alcohol. In 1998 Bradley McCue died from an over dose of alcohol because he didn't know it was a dangerous drug. Ignorance kills. And so do political agendas. Walter F. Wouk - president NORML in Schoharie
------------------------------------------------------------------- Groups Seek Results of Marijuana Vote (According to The Washington Post, The District of Columbia chapter of the League of Women Voters and eight other local organizations filed friend-of-the-court briefs this week in support of the ACLU's lawsuit asking a federal judge to release and uphold the results of DC's Nov. 3 referendum on the medical use of marijuana.) Date: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 13:09:48 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US DC: Groups Seek Results of Marijuana Vote Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Source: Washington Post (DC) Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/ Copyright: 1998 The Washington Post Company Pubdate: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 Compiled from reports by staff writers Paul W. Valentine, Bill Miller, David Montgomery, Alan Sipress, Philip P. Pan and Victoria Benning and the Associated Press. THE DISTRICT GROUPS SEEK RESULTS OF MARIJUANA VOTE The D.C. chapter of the League of Women Voters and eight other area organizations filed court papers this week calling for a judge to release and uphold the results of the Nov. 3 referendum on the medical use of marijuana. The groups sided with the American Civil Liberties Union and the D.C. government, which contend that Congress illegally interfered with the local election process. At issue is a congressional amendment that bars the District from spending money on any initiative that would "legalize or otherwise reduce" penalties for users of marijuana. D.C. officials have not released results of the marijuana vote, saying that the amendment prevents them from spending money to do so. Along with the ACLU, they are asking U.S. District Judge Richard W. Roberts to set aside the congressional action and let results be made public and take effect. The organizations opposing the congressional amendment include: the D.C. Democratic State Committee; the D.C. Statehood Party; the Metropolitan Washington Council of the AFL-CIO; the D.C. Chapter of the Republican National African-American Council; the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance; the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club; the Libertarian National Committee; and the Greater Washington chapter of Americans for Democratic Action. The Justice Department, which agreed to represent Congress, filed its own set of court papers asking Roberts to dismiss the lawsuit. Late Activist Honored for AIDS Day The D.C. Council passed a resolution yesterday honoring Steve Michael, the founder of the local chapter of ACT-UP, an AIDS activist group, who died in May. David Catania (R-At Large), who introduced the resolution, said it was fitting on World AIDS Day to honor the activist. Michael, who had AIDS, was also a leader in home rule demonstrations and launched the petition drive that succeeded in getting a medical marijuana initiative on the Nov. 3 ballot, although Congress passed a law forbidding the District to fund the provision. Wayne Turner, Michael's partner, said in remarks before the council that the "best way to honor the dead is to fight for the living," and he urged the council to support measures to slow the spread of AIDS. QUOTE OF THE DAY "Only a few years ago, it was a forest filled with drugs and anger. From the ghetto to compared to right now, I know I am stretching it, but it is like Beverly Hills." -- Shawn Johnson, who lived at Montana Terrace for nearly 20 years, on renovations to the D.C. Housing Authority project. -- Page B1
------------------------------------------------------------------- So Much For 'The Will Of The People' (An op-ed in The San Diego Union Tribune by former Congressman Lionel Van Deerlin recounts the recent electoral victories for medical marijuana patients, taking note of the fear shared by many conservatives that marijuana usage is a first step on the path to perdition. Yet what became of the earlier concern among conservatives to get government off the backs of the people?) Date: Sat, 5 Dec 1998 11:53:45 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US: Correction: OPED: So Much For `The Will Of The People' Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Richard Lake for The Media Awareness Project Pubdate: Wed, 02 Dec 1998 Source: San Diego Union Tribune (CA) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.uniontrib.com/ Copyright: 1998 Union-Tribune Publishing Co. Author: Lionel Van Deerlin Note: Van Deerlin represented a San Diego County district in Congress for 18 years. Note: When originally posted this item was identified as an editorial. It is an OPED item, authored as above. Thanks to the reader and newshawk that called the error to our attention. firstname.lastname@example.org SO MUCH FOR 'THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE' It went almost unnoticed in the larger scheme of things in this election season. But on Nov. 3, three more states -- Washington, Nevada and Alaska -- voted to legalize marijuana for medicinal use. And in two other states plus the District of Columbia, voters faced down government officials who questioned the right of citizens to decide this issue for themselves. Arizona voters found medical marijuana on their ballot in a second successive election. They had given approval only two years ago (along with California) to legalize the drug upon a doctor's prescription. So why this second statewide proposition? It was to bar the state Legislature from voiding that prior vote. A similar challenge faced people in Oregon. They resoundingly rejected a legislative move to restore criminal penalties for possessing marijuana -- even as prescribed to ease suffering. For District of Columbia residents, who are still wards of the federal government, the conflict with authority was drawn even more sharply. Under orders from Congress, District officials were barred from tabulating the votes in a local referendum empowering physicians to recommend pot smoking for patients with certain illnesses. We are all aware of the fear shared by many conservatives -- that marijuana usage is not only unwise but a first step along the path to perdition. Yet what ever became of an earlier concern among conservatives? As I recall, this was to get government off the backs of the American people. The mantra went like this: On matters like abortion, gun control or school prayer, faceless bureaucrats and liberal judges think they know better than the rest of us. The convictions of ordinary folk are disregarded. It remained for Ronald Reagan, no less, to enshrine that aphorism about removing government from our backs. So why can't we let the medical profession prescribe freely to ease the unpleasantness of illnesses ranging from epilepsy and multiple sclerosis to several forms of cancer? Though it finds backing in respectable medical circles, this approach runs afoul of a national drug enforcement policy that has remained in place through successive administrations of both parties. The policy persists despite its demonstrated failure to quell the public appetite for a range of drugs far more devastating than pot. A trio of public servants starting with William Bennett have accepted the oddly un-American designation, "drug czar." These otherwise fine men all have been longer on rhetoric than on the sort of results expected of czars. Their only comparison with Ivan the Terrible has been the vast number of U.S. citizens who continue to jam our prisons -- nearly half of them on drug-related offenses. Marijuana as medicine? Our incumbent czar, Barry McCaffrey, has responded pretty much as we'd expect of a czar -- or as the retired Army general, which he is, in defense of a discredited battle plan. When voters in California enacted Proposition 215 two years ago, McCaffrey's reaction was to threaten federal prosecution of any doctors who might feel emboldened thereafter to recommend marijuana as a palliative. Although quickly overruled in court, McCaffrey has persisted in his campaign to keep federal law supreme. He dismisses clinical evidence that pot smoking in certain cases could constitute good medicine. His uncertain trumpet continues to be sounded in the face of favorable reports from a number of professional sources and an outright endorsement of the drug's efficacy by the New England Journal of Medicine. Czar McCaffrey laces his public utterances with dire warnings that even a limited use of marijuana for health purposes sends the wrong message to the nation's youth. We are left to wonder what success he attaches to earlier messages that have failed to deter the spread of pot smoking among school kids as early as the elementary level. Numerous lesser officials have fallen in line. In moving to close a Bay Area center where marijuana was being dispensed as medicine, state Attorney General Dan Lungren may have earned credit with conservatives, but it obviously made no points in his failed campaign for governor. The arrogance of state officials out West was topped only by the congressional action against D.C. residents. Exit polling disclosed that possibly 80 percent of them had voted in support of medical marijuana. But their views on this may remain an official secret. Why? On motion of Rep. Bob Barr, R-Ga., a member of the House Judiciary subcommittee on crime, Congress had inserted a proviso in its catchall pre-election appropriations bill asserting that no funds therein could be expended "to carry out any ballot initiative that would legalize drugs or reduce penalties for drug use, possession or sale." A word to the wise. The D.C. Board of Elections & Ethics ordered that votes on the marijuana proposition be set aside, uncounted. Last time anything like this was visited on Congressman Barr's Atlanta-area populace, it was by Northern carpetbaggers swarming in behind Gen. Sherman. The bottom line: Doctors today are free to prescribe highly addictive morphine, but not a milder drug that conservatives appear to fear most. And never mind what a majority of Americans say every time the issue is put to a vote. Get government off our backs? Ha.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Makeshift Methamphetamine Labs Spreading In N. Texas (A ludicrous piece of drug-warrior fear-mongering in The Dallas Morning News says crank cooks in northern Texas are whipping up batches of methamphetamine using a method once employed by Adolf Hitler's Nazis - but it's hard to imagine "nomadic" hordes of uniformed SS troopers hitting "large discount stores" to stock up on cold remedies containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine, automobile starter fluid, drain cleaner, denatured alcohol, and other over-the-counter products. North Central Texas Narcotics Task Force Investigator Dan Coltrain is quoted saying the drug is so addictive that "Once it's got you, it's got you. I've never worked with anyone who's gotten off. They always go back to it.")Date: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 10:01:06 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US TX: Makeshift Methamphetamine Labs Spreading In N. Texas Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com Pubdate: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 Source: Dallas Morning News (TX) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.dallasnews.com/ Copyright: 1998 The Dallas Morning News Author: Curtis Howell / The Dallas Morning News MAKESHIFT METHAMPHETAMINE LABS SPREADING IN N. TEXAS Quicker than you can cook and cool a pecan pie, drug-makers can whip up a batch of methamphetamine using a method once employed by Adolf Hitler's Nazis. They concoct the drug - the same one used to keep German troops alert during World War II - from raw materials available at most any large discount store. And they complicate capture by doing it in two hours or less in a moving car or boat, a hotel room or a campsite in the woods. Lately, authorities say, these illicit operations - some call them Beavis and Butthead labs - are popping up with more frequency in North Texas, particularly Denton and Wise counties. But so far neither Dallas police nor Collin County authorities have reported finding any of the makeshift labs. "We're crossing our fingers," said Chief Deputy Rick Allen of the Collin County Sheriff's Department. "We don't think we are bulletproof, and we are keeping an eye on it." Denton County Sheriff's Lt. Richard Mankoff, who heads the North Central Texas Narcotics Task Force, said the first documented Nazi-type operation appeared in California about a decade ago. The nomadic manufacturers started showing up not long ago in southern Missouri and have spread to Arkansas, Oklahoma and North and East Texas, said Special Agent Paul Villaescusa with the Drug Enforcement Administration. Lt. Mankoff said the problem mushroomed locally in the last year after a man taught the method to others for $5,000 per lesson. "They are also finding the recipe on the Internet," he said. Mr. Villaescusa and other police officials said one key to busting the drug-makers is cooperation from retailers. Typically, those making the drug known as crystal, crank or meth will buy large quantities of cold remedies containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine, automobile starter fluid, drain cleaner, denatured alcohol and other over-the-counter products. Lt. Mankoff said most retailers don't realize that buyers of large quantities of seemingly innocent materials could be using them to make illegal drugs. The Wal-Mart chain has bent over backward to help, he said. Wal-Mart stores videotape certain areas of the store for authorities, he said, and have limited the quantities of ephedrine-bearing medicines they will sell. One case of the cold medication can be turned into a pound of drug that will fetch about $15,000 on Dallas streets, police said. Larger-volume operations, mostly in California and Mexico, take days to manufacture a batch of the highly addictive substances. Lewisville Investigator Dan Coltrain, who works with the North Central Texas Narcotics Task Force, said users have told him that the drug from the Nazi recipe takes effect sooner and gives more of a rush. It's also highly addictive. "Once it's got you, it's got you," he said. "I've never worked with anyone who's gotten off. They always go back to it."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Rockers Play For Pot On 'Hempilation II' (An upbeat review by UPI notes "Hempilation," a 1995 music compilation, raised more than $90,000 for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. Now comes "Hempilation 2 - freetheweed," released just after the recent election. It's more varied then the first album, and includes country, hip-hop and reggae along with rock.) Date: Fri, 4 Dec 1998 14:21:57 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US: WIRE: Rockers Play For Pot On 'Hempilation II' Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: General Pulaski Source: United Press International Website: http://www.hightimes.com/ Copyright: 1998 United Press International Author: JOHN SWENSON Pubdate: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 ROCKERS PLAY FOR POT ON 'HEMPILATION II' UPI Arts & Entertainment - It's Only Rock 'n' Roll Popular musicians have been writing songs about marijuana throughout the 20th century, from the big-band ``viper'' music of Louis Armstrong and Cab Calloway's celebration of the ``Reefer Man'' to the pot anthems of late-1960s San Francisco rockers Country Joe and the Fish and the Jefferson Airplane. In 1995 the editors of ``High Times'' magazine recruited current rockers to contribute to a benefit album supporting the review and reform of legislation governing the growth and use of cannabis for its medical, industrial and recreational use. The album, ``Hempilation,'' sold more than 110,000 units, a remarkable figure for a benefit album, and raised more than $90,000 for NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. The project was so successful, in fact, that it led to a sequel, ``Hempilation 2 - freetheweed,'' which was released just after the recent mid-term election, in which several medical marijuana initiatives and pro-legalization candidates were voted in. The cast on ``Hempilation 2'' is more varied then the first album, including country, hip-hop and reggae along with rock. Country superstar Willie Nelson, a benefit veteran whose own annual event in support of American farmers, ``Farm Aid,'' has become a fixture, contributed his ballad about travelling around the country as an outsider with his drummer, Paul English, ``Me and Paul.'' The version included here was recorded live in Amsterdam, the worldwide center for cannabis connoisseurs. ``There's nobody alive that doesn't know how I feel about marijuana,'' said Nelson. ``It's just so ridiculous that a product with that many uses has to be made into a political thing. It's a shame. Not only could our farmers pay their bills and get out of debt, but this whole country would find a new way to environmentally protect ourselves by getting rid of all these petrochemicals that are killing us.'' At the opposite end of the spectrum from Nelson, the album includes the hilarious spoof by funk veteran George Clinton, ``U.S. Custom Coast Guard Dope Dog,'' a tale that recounts the unintended benefits dope dogs derive from their job. ``When they have to pay $4 billion for the drug war,'' somebody gets that,`` said one Clinton who definitely did inhale. ''Drugs are incidental in this.`` The issue takes on a very personal note with singer-songwriter Vic Chesnutt's contribution, ``Weed to the Rescue.'' Chesnutt, who was paralyzed in a car accident over a decade ago and performs in a wheelchair, is an outspoken advocate for the benefits of medical marijuana. ``I just needed to go on the record as saying we must change the laws,'' he said. ``I hate being a criminal. I use marijuana for medical purposes and creativity. I use it sometimes if I have writers's block. That's medicinal too.'' Mike Watt, leader of the legendary alternative rockers The Minutemen, assembled an interesting cast including bassist Charlie Haden's daughter Petra on vocals and drummer Stephen Perkins of Jane's Addiction, to record the otherwordly ``Sidemousin' The Bong.'' ``I want to be able to farm my own small crop for my personal use without having to be criminalized for it,'' said Watt. ``I want the same trust the government has in my using alcohol responsibly to be extended to mota.'' One of the hottest tracks on the album is a remake of the Humble Pie classic ``30 Days in the Hole,'' from the album ``Smokin','' done here by the band that has redefined the power trio concept in the 1990s, Gov't Mule. Ex-Black Crowes guitarist Marc Ford sits in on this burning tribute to the late Steve Marriot. ``We had a lot of fun making that one,'' said Govt. Mule guitarist and vocalist Warren Haynes. ``The song describes an extreme situation, but when we got into the studio with our friend from Big Sugar, Gordie Johnson, producing, the vibe was right and the result speaks for itself. ``NORML is a just cause,'' Haynes insisted. ``It's ridiculous in this day and age for somebody to be going to jail for smoking pot or possessing a little pot.'' Big Sugar, a popular Canadian rock band, has been a longtime supporter of the cause. The band contributed a cover of Paul McCartney's ``Let Me Roll It'' to the project. ``I'm seeking to get a permit from a provincial government to grow hemp as a textile crop,'' said Big Sugar leader Gordie Johnson. ``You can't get high on hemp. You'd have to smoke a joint the size of a telephone pole. That's a lot of hemp.''
------------------------------------------------------------------- Germany Is Not Punishing Hashish Users (A translation of an article from Svenska Dagbladet, in Sweden, notes the new German government, formed by a coalition of the Social Democrats and the Green Party, is implementing new harm-reduction policies, in agreement that the hardline policies of the previous Kohl government have failed.) Date: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 17:05:13 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: Sweden: Germany Is Not Punishing Hashish Users Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Mike Gray (email@example.com) Pubdate: Wed, 02 Dec 1998 Source: Svenska Dagbladet (Sweden) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.svd.se/svd/ettan/dagens/index.html Copyright: 1998 SvD GERMANY IS NOT PUNISHING HASHISH USERS Svenska Dagbladet, November 29. Germany who has for a long time been in the European forefront with a strict and inflexible drug policy is now turning toward a softer approach. Under its new government shall even heavy users of heroin be able to obtain the narcotic under prescription. "The German Government shall naturally not sell heroin. But we must realize that there are a small group of users that do not accept methadone. Those must have legal access to the real thing" says the Minister of Public Health, Environmentalist Andrea Fischer. The German Government is therefore asking the equivalent of FDA to approve a pilot program allowing local communities to start heroin dispensing programs. Under the pilot program users will receive daily doses under condition that they participate in special therapeutic sessions. Already in place in several large German cities are "shooting galleries" where users can obtain clean utensils for injecting drugs. Frankfurt has four such galleries which are used daily by hundreds of addicts. The proposed program is at the moment in a legal and political limbo, tolerated and condoned by the Prosecutor General, but still forbidden on paper. The Bonn Government is now preparing legislation which will allow all these programs. Minister of Public Health, Andrea Fischer also wants to de-dramatize the consumption of marijuana and hashish. Persons discovered with these drugs for personal consumption shall not be prosecuted. This is already a facts in several of Germany's Bundesrepubliks but not all. The Government wants the more liberal view to be a national policy. "Cannabis is naturally not harmless" says the Minister "But it should be compared to alcohol. Users here who are responsible and only drink a half glass or so every evening have no problems." In the recent election campaign the Environmental Party argued for a complete legalization of hashish and marijuana for users over the age of sixteen. The Social Democrats refused to allow this platform when the Government was formed. The Social Democrats do, however, also agree that the hard policy of the previous Kohl government has failed. "Zero Tolerance" is a term that sounds nice but doesn't help the problem according to the SPD experts who point out that the number of addicts has remained stable for many years. In Germany there are today between 100,000 - 150,000 users of heavy drugs and if ecstasy is included approximately twice this number. The number of fatal drug overdoses was last year approximately 1,500 a reduction from 2,000 eight years ago. At the same time the number of alcoholics is estimated at 2,3 Million with 40,000 fatalities annually.
------------------------------------------------------------------- DrugSense Weekly, No. 76 (The weekly summary of drug policy news leads with a feature article by Mike Gray, author of "Drug Crazy" - Medical marijuana initiatives shift the front of the drug war. The Weekly News in Review includes such Drug War Policy articles as - On the web - a virtual breeze comes to Washington; The San Francisco Examiner editorial, Pro Bono; Rep. Bono gets burned for honesty; Drug policy is sound, despite what Molly Ivins may think. Law Enforcement & Prison articles include - Prison shootings unjustified; Prison tour doesn't sway lawmakers; Feds sought bigger drug deal to ensure a stiffer prison term; and Double standard on drug sentences. International News articles include - Black passengers targeted in Pearson searches?; Mexico seizes three hotels from drug cartel; Australia - Uphill struggle on trail of record heroin bust; 55 percent of smuggled cocaine world wide being transported by express services; Swiss voters block bid to legalize narcotics; Dutch to extend free heroin hand-outs to addicts; Drugs - cacophony in the European Union. Hot Off The 'Net publicizes a CD recording, From the mouths of drug war prisoners; New Republic ads by Common Sense for Drug Policy. The Quote of the Week features Tacitus. Plus Special Notices, including an interview with Jane Marcus, "NewsHawk of the Month," and thanks to DrugSense DrugNews Screeners Don Beck and Kevin Fansler.) Date: Wed, 02 Dec 1998 11:42:30 -0800 To: email@example.com From: Mark Greer (MGreer@mapinc.org) Subject: DrugSense Weekly, December 2, 1998 No. 76 *** DRUGSENSE WEEKLY *** DrugSense Weekly, December 2, 1998, No. 76 A DrugSense publication This newsletter may be read on-line at: http://www.drugsense.org/dsw/1998/ds98.n76.html Please consider sending a letter to the editor responding to any of the important articles below. The Email address is provided for most newspapers. *** TABLE OF CONTENTS: * Feature Article Medical marijuana initiatives shift the front of the drug war By Mike Gray - Author "Drug Crazy" * Weekly News in Review Drug War Policy- On The Web: A Virtual Breeze Comes to Washington San Francisco Examiner Editorial: Pro Bono Rep. Bono Gets Burned for Honesty Drug Policy is Sound, Despite What Molly Ivins May Think Law Enforcement & Prisons- Prison Shootings Unjustified Prison Tour Doesn't Sway Lawmakers Feds Sought Bigger Drug Deal to Ensure a Stiffer Prison Term Double Standard on Drug Sentences International News- Black Passengers Targeted in Pearson Searches? Mexico Seizes Three Hotels From Drug Cartel Australia: Uphill Struggle on Trail of Record Heroin Bust 55% Of Smuggled Cocaine World Wide Being Transported by Express Services Swiss Voters Block Bid to Legalize Narcotics Dutch to Extend Free Heroin Hand-Outs to Addicts Drugs: Cacophony In The European Union * Hot Off The 'Net CD Recording From the Mouths of Drug War Prisoners New Republic Ads by Common Sense for Drug Policy * Quote of the Week Tacitus * Special Notices Interview with Jane Marcus "NewsHawk of the Month" Thanks to DrugNews Screeners - Don Beck and Kevin Fansler *** FEATURE ARTICLE *** Medical marijuana initiatives shift the front of the drug war By Mike Gray Author "Drug Crazy" The earthquake that rocked the Republican Party this month also jolted the foundations of another prominent ideological temple: the federal drug war establishment. In nine separate ballots in six states and the District of Columbia, voters ignored the advice of former presidents and high government officials, opting instead for the most significant challenge to drug war orthodoxy since President Jimmy Carter called on Congress to decriminalize marijuana in 1977. For 25 years, the government has maintained that marijuana is so dangerous we couldn't even talk about it. Now the issue is on the table, like it or not, and if it turns out that marijuana is a medicine instead of the devil's handmaiden, public support for arresting nonmedical users will begin to erode. Over the strenuous objection of politicians and lawmakers of every persuasion, voters in Alaska, Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, Oregon, Washington state and the District of Columbia decided that it's OK for sick people to smoke marijuana. As if to make sure the message was understood, several of the most outspoken foes of medical marijuana had their hats handed to them on a platter. California Attorney General Dan Lungren battled tooth and nail against this idea when his fellow Californians kicked off the revolt two years ago, but he found himself cast as the heavy in a war against cancer patients. It contributed to the ultimately fatal image problems of his gubernatorial campaign. The drug warriors clearly understand this is a defining moment, but they are in a tight spot. Two years ago, Gen. Barry McCaffrey, the White House drug czar, led a frontal attack on California's medical-marijuana initiative, Proposition 215 ("Cheech and Chong medicine," he called it), but his take-no-prisoners assault apparently backfired, and it passed with room to spare. This time McCaffrey maintained a lower profile, avoiding any direct engagement with the other side. Though he lost every battle in the anti-marijuana campaign, he did manage to keep the war off the front page. The urgency of this confrontation for both sides is demonstrated by the back-door effort to keep the issue from even coming to a vote wherever possible. When medical marijuana qualified for the ballot in the District of Columbia, North Carolina Sen. Lauch Faircloth said, "I'd do anything I could to block it," and he did. But even taking the unprecedented step of forbidding local officials from counting the votes could not keep the lid on. Exit polls showed that the initiative had been approved in D.C. by a ratio of 2 to 1. So the issue will undoubtedly return to the nation's capital, but Faircloth will not. He lost to a moderate Democrat. Officials in Colorado similarly tried to prevent a vote on that state's medical-marijuana initiative. At the last minute, they decided that the measure had not qualified even though the initiative already was on the ballot. But the voters voted anyway, and medical marijuana finished with a 14-point lead. In states in which the vote was unimpeded, the spread was even more impressive. Washington state's medical-marijuana initiative not only won by a landslide, it also led in every county -- which means that every member of the Washington congressional delegation from Spokane to Cape Flattery is from a district that voted for medical marijuana. But nowhere was the battle more clearly drawn than in Arizona. Two years ago, 65 percent of Arizona voters passed a medical-marijuana initiative -- only to have it thrown back in their faces by the state legislature. Under pressure from the White House, the state nullified the will of the voters. Officials convinced themselves that the public had been duped by clever advertising. But you don't stiff 65 percent of the electorate without paying a price down the line, and this time the voters not only underscored their original intention, they also passed a second law that severely trimmed the legislature's power to do anything about it. This time there was no talk about who had been duped. The long-term problem for the drug warriors was most visible in the erosion of support in the state of Oregon. Medical marijuana wasn't the main issue there. Possession of an ounce or less has been virtually legal since 1973. But the state legislature, in a classic misreading of the public mood, decided to outlaw the weed once and for all. They placed a measure on the ballot that would have restored criminal penalties for any amount of marijuana, and it went down in flames, 2-1. The aftershocks from these votes could have profound implications for the future of the drug war itself. As author Dan Baum noted in his 1996 critique, Smoke and Mirrors, if you take marijuana out of the equation, the number of so-called serious drug users drops from 13 million to 3 million, and the drug war shrinks from a cabinet-level jihad to a sideshow. To maintain its $50-billion-a-year effort, the government must defeat medical marijuana at all costs. The current strategy is to ignore these storm clouds and hope they blow away. But if this latest referendum is a clue, they will have to stick their heads in the sand more deeply. Editors Note: This Op Ed was originally published Friday, Nov. 27, 1998 in the Philadelphia Inquirer (PA) Other editorials by Mike Gray may be found at: http://www.drugsense.org/crazy.htm *** WEEKLY NEWS IN REVIEW *** Drug War Policy- *** COMMENT: Those who ask if drug reform advocacy on the Internet has an impact on the real world received an answer from Sam Vincent Meddis in USA Today. Although he misspelled Dave Borden's name, Meddis accurately described the activities of Lindesmith Center, DrugSense, and DRCNet. A VIRTUAL BREEZE COMES TO WASHINGTON One of the real nice things about working at USA TODAY is the view. From my cube on the 22nd floor of the company's tower in Arlington, Va., I'm afforded what can only be described as a spectacular panorama of Washington, D.C. What I like best is that on a clear day you can almost see the hot air rising from the various government buildings there. [snip] But it seems to me that nothing has caused more sustained government hot air than the so-called drug war. Now thanks to the Internet, a cool breeze may be moving in. [snip] Pubdate: Tue, 24 Nov 1998 Source: USA Today (US) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.usatoday.com/news/nfront.htm Copyright: 1998 USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Co. Inc. Author: Sam Vincent Meddis, USA TODAY USA Today technology site http://www.usatoday.com/life/cyber/cc.htm URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1075.a10.html *** COMMENT: The impact of our efforts is also evident from the following lead editorial in the Nov. 22 San Francisco Examiner- an excoriation of drug policy which would have been unthinkable two years ago. It's ironic that Mary Bono, was forced to publicly regret her refreshing candor, almost before the ink was dry. PRO BONO When Sonny's Widow Revealed His Prescription-Drug Dependence, A Window Was Opened On A Hidden Epidemic in This Country SOMEBODY'S drug crazed in this country, but it's not necessarily the users. Mary Bono's revelation that her husband Sonny died because of his dependence on prescription drugs underscores the insanity of this country's "war on drugs." Millions of Americans are hooked on legal drugs such as Valium and Percodan - two of the pharmaceuticals that may have done in Sonny Bono - while the government bares its knuckles against dying cancer patients who try to ease their pain a bit by smoking marijuana. [snip] We hope her colleagues in Congress listen to her - really listen - and then take steps to reel in the "war on drugs." In its psychoactive appetites, this nation has been on a bad trip too long. We can either continue to pour billions into high-tech drug-fighting weaponry and shutting down marijuana clubs, or else we can face our real problems and search for real solutions. Source: San Francisco Examiner (CA) Copyright: 1998 San Francisco Examiner Pubdate: Sun, 22 Nov 1998 Section: Editorial, Page D 8 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.examiner.com/ URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1074.a07.html *** REP. BONO GETS BURNED FOR HONESTY LOS ANGELES - Rep. Mary Bono (R-Calif.), widow of Sonny Bono and weary of scandal, says that she's learning the hard way that she sometimes can be "too honest." Yes, she told The Associated Press on Friday, her husband did have a prescription drug problem. "A reporter asked me a direct question and I answered it," Bono said. "In hindsight, I wish I hadn't said anything." [snip] Source: Chicago Tribune (IL) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.chicagotribune.com/ Copyright: 1998 Chicago Tribune Company Pubdate: Sun, 29 Nov 1998 Author: Associated Press Section: Sec. 1 URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1097.a02.html *** COMMENT: That this battle of ideas is important to government policy makers can be inferred from the following attempt at rebuttal of Molly Ivins' forthright drug war criticism, which appeared in several papers two weeks ago. The technique used is typical of ONDCP; relying heavily on unsubstantiated assertion, distortion of fact, and "shoot the messenger" tactics. U.S. DRUG POLICY IS SOUND, DESPITE WHAT MOLLY IVINS MIGHT THINK The language of Molly Ivins' column, " Politicians lag behind the people on drug issues," in the Oregonian on Nov. 18 rings nostalgically from the mid-1960's. [snip] Mike Gray's book might be "lively polemic," as Ivins put it, but it's short on science and facts. Prohibition worked in terms of reducing rates of alcohol consumption and alcoholism; it wasn't repealed because it was a flop but because the country wanted liquor to be legal. When substances are sanctioned and available, use goes up -- including abuse by children. [snip] Source: The Oregonian Copyright: 1998 The Oregonian Pubdate: 25 Nov 1998 Contact: email@example.com FAX: 503-294-4193 Mail: 1320 S.W. Broadway, Portland, OR 97201 Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Author: Lynda Bayer Note: Linda Bayer is senior writer and strategic analyst at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (For the Molly Ivins column Bayer was attacking, see: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1059.a04.html) URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1086.a05.html *** Law Enforcement & Prison Issues *** COMMENT: The more the drug war evolves into an engine of imprisonment, the more the human rights of "convicted felons" are diminished. In California, where the press has been denied access to state prison inmates for over a year, hardly anyone was surprised when a blue ribbon panel found that the vast majority of shootings at Corcoran State Prison were unjustified. These were the same shootings which, when "investigated" by Dan Lungren, had resulted in a whitewash. There is also an unhealthy tendency toward increased use of (cheaper) private prisons; the ho-hum reaction of Wisconsin legislators visiting their state's prisoners in Tennessee might be expected- after all, prisoners and their families don't add up to that many votes. SHOOTINGS BY GUARDS IN 24 OF 31 CASES-SEVEN OF THEM FATAL-WERE UNJUSTIFIED, INVESTIGATORS SAY. LOS ANGELES-An independent panel concluded that two dozen shootings of inmates at Corcoran State Prison were unjustified, it was reported Thursday. In a report released Wednesday, The Select Shooting Review Panel found that 24 of 31 inmate shootings at Corcoran from 1989 to 1995-seven of them fatal-involved an unjustified use of force. The panel also said the State Department of Corrections' entire system for investigating and prosecuting prison shootings is flawed. [snip] Pubdate: Nov 27, 1998 Source: Associated Press Copyright: 1998 Associated Press. URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1095.a01.html *** PRISON TOUR DOESN'T SWAY LAWMAKERS 4 of 5 who visit private Tennessee site still favor shipping out inmates Whiteville, Tenn. - Four of the five Wisconsin legislators who toured a private prison where Wisconsin inmates had been abused said Saturday they saw no reason to stop sending inmates to Corrections Corp. of America prisons here or in Oklahoma. The four Republicans - and one Democrat, who disagreed with them -spoke after a day of visiting the company's facilities and meeting with company officials in the wake of complaints of multiple cases of abuse of Wisconsin inmates. The abuse came in the days after a brutal attack by inmates on a rookie prison guard. [snip] Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (WI) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Fax: (414) 224-8280 Website: http://www.jsonline.com/ Copyright: 1998, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Author: Richard P. Jones of the Journal Sentinel staff Pubdate: Sun, 29 Nov 1998 URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1087.a05.html *** COMMENT: The following article is representative. of a remarkable series in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (also carried by the Toledo Blade) documenting the wide range and prevalence of various unsavory tactics used by federal enforcement agents and prosecutors to entrap and convict a growing number of citizens in "drug crime." Titles and URLs of other articles in the series are listed. FEDS SOUGHT BIGGER DRUG DEAL TO ENSURE A STIFFER PRISON SENTENCE Michael Staufer lost his minimum wage job at about the same time he was robbed and beaten in August 1992 on a Los Angeles street. Times were so tough he lived in a garage. So when a friend named Scott suddenly pressed Staufer to find him 10,000 hits of LSD, Staufer wondered if the guy might have been high on the drug himself. Staufer was 21 years old, partied hard and used LSD when he could afford it. Once, he'd bought 20 or 25 hits of the drug that he resold to his friends, but he wasn't a dealer, and he certainly didn't have the money to finance 10,000 hits. What Staufer didn't know was that federal agents had busted Scott on drug charges and promised him leniency if he would help the feds snare other drug dealers. [snip] Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (PA) Copyright: 1998 PG Publishing. Pubdate: Mon, 23 Nov 1998 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.post-gazette.com/ Author: Bill Moushey, Post-Gazette Staff Writer The Blade, Toledo, OH email: firstname.lastname@example.org URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1079.a07.html Other stories & URLS in this series include: 1) Fighting To Prove Innocence Led 3 To Stiffer Sentences http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1078.a06.html 2) Win At All Costs series - A Sting Gone Awry http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1078.a07.html 2) Federal Sting Often Put More Drugs On The Streets http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1079.a02.html 3) Informant Lured Him Into A Costly Deal http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1079.a04.html 4) Drug Charge Beaten, But At High Price http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1079.a08.html 5) Trapped Into Trying To Settle Vendetta http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1080.a01.html 6) Hiding The Facts http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1080.a03.html 7) Few Of Case's Twists, Shady Deals Revealed In Court http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1080.a04.html *** COMMENT: A persistent question within the reform movement is why so few blacks speak out against the racism implicit in our drug policy. The following op-ed by Cynthia Tucker is an eloquent description of the problem, but misses the boat in its conclusions. AS I SEE IT by Cynthia Tucker DOUBLE STANDARD ON DRUG SENTENCES THERE ARE forgotten neighborhoods in America where the holiday season imposes a distinct and peculiar ritual: Mom and the kids, or Grandma and the grand kids, pack up a few goodies in tin plates and paper bags, carefully wrapped in foil. They set out early for a visit preordained to be brief and circumscribed, its joy Limited by the setting. They go to visit relative in prison. The places in America already decimated by poverty and economic collapse - the black and brown inner-cities - are also places where many of the young men are out of circulation. They cannot become taxpayers or decent parents or reasonable prospects for marriage. They will leave prison with criminal records that guarantee them limit job opportunities. Lacking decent incomes, they will never marry the mothers of their children. And that, in turn, will guarantee another generation of children who have had little contact with their fathers. [snip] The streets may be safer because we have succeeded in locking away for good many of the most dangerous predators, the gangbangers and serial killers, the robbers and rapists and carjackers. But the country is no better off for a shameless double standard that celebrates the privileged athlete, actor or businessman who licks his drug habit in a ritzy sanitarium, while imprisoning the crackhead too broke to afford drug treatment. That policy guarantees a permanent underclass. Pubdate: Sat, 28 Nov 1998 Source: San Francisco Chronicle Page: Editorial Page (A 24) Copyright: 1998 San Francisco Chronicle Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Author: Cynthia Tucker Note: Cynthia Tucker is editorial page editor of the Atlanta Constitution. URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1095.a03.html *** International News *** COMMENT: The following, from the Toronto Star, demonstrates that racism isn't exclusively American. It exists everywhere; even north of the border. BLACK PASSENGERS TARGETED IN PEARSON SEARCHES? Lawyers plan court fight over `racial profiling' by customs officials at airport A survey of Air Canada flights from Jamaica to Toronto reveals that black passengers are far more likely than white travellers to be searched by Canada Customs. [snip] Source: Toronto Star (Canada) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.thestar.com/ Copyright: 1998, The Toronto Star Pubdate: Sun, 29 Nov 1998 Pages: A1, A9 Author: Royson James, Toronto Star City Columnist URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1096.a06.html *** COMMENT: Forfeiture, the US model for giving law enforcement agencies direct access to the profits of the illegal drug market is gaining popularity overseas; here are two examples of official greed from Mexico and Australia. MEXICO SEIZES THREE HOTELS FROM DRUG CARTEL MEXICO CITY, Nov 24 (Reuters) - Mexican authorities have seized about $200 million in assets from drug traffickers, including three luxury hotels, two of them in the Caribbean resort of Cancun, according to a published report on Tuesday. The Reforma newspaper said Mexican police, with the help of U.S. agents, took cars, the hotels and other property from members of the so-called Juarez cocaine cartel. [snip] Pubdate: Tue, 24 Nov 1998 Source: Reuters Copyright: 1998 Reuters Limited. URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1079.a03.html *** UPHILL STRUGGLE ON TRAIL OF RECORD HEROIN BUST DESPITE an international hunt, police have yet to identify the criminal masterminds behind last month's record heroin seizure in Australia. After a four-week global asset search, Australian Federal Police have only made restraining orders on a modest Hong Kong home unit, stolen watches, bracelets and gold bars, freezing only $400,000 in assets and jewelry from the 18 gang members charged with the bust. [snip] Pubdate: Sun, 22 Nov 1998 Source: Sun Herald (Australia) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.sunherald.fairfax.com.au/ Copyright: 1998 John Fairfax Holdings Ltd Author: Darren Goodsir and Chris Dobson, in Hong Kong Page: 51 URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1079.a03.html *** COMMENT: The following article is a translation from the German press; while not unknown in the US, such heavy reliance on commercial delivery of illegal drugs hasn't been noted here. 55% OF SMUGGLED COCAINE WORLD WIDE BEING TRANSPORTED BY EXPRESS SERVICES According to German Customs authorities, private transport services are being used "to a considerable extent" for the international transport of illegal drugs. The trend is clear: according to current estimates the sharp rise in the use of Express services and the quick turn around in the exchange of goods has led to a lessening of risk. This in turn has led to the rise in demand for such services by international drug smugglers. [snip] Source: Die Welt (Germany) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.welt.de/ Copyright: Die Welt 1998 Pubdate: 21 Nov 1998 Author: Peter Scherer, Frankfurt am Main Translator: Pat Dolan (from German text) URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1077.a04.html *** COMMENT: The "Droleg" initiative which would have legalized all drugs for Swiss citizens was voted on this past week-end and went down to an even worse defeat than anticipated. The post mortems will be interesting, but at least part of the negative vote was motivated by legitimate fears that Switzerland would become the national homologue "needle park." SWISS VOTERS BLOCK BID TO LEGALIZE NARCOTICS ZURICH (Reuters) - Swiss voters Sunday rejected by a thumping three-to-one margin a sweeping proposal to legalize narcotics that backers said would eliminate the drugs mafia but critics said would make Switzerland a drugs haven. The plan would have made Switzerland the only country in the world where anyone aged 18 or older could buy narcotics of their choice, from marijuana to heroin, from state-run outlets or pharmacies after consulting a physician. [snip] Pubdate: Sun, 29 Nov 1998 Source: Reuters Copyright: 1998 Reuters Limited. Author: Michael Shields URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1097.a06.html *** COMMENT: The Netherlands continued the tradition of carrying out their own pragmatic drug policy despite US opposition. DUTCH TO EXTEND FREE HEROIN HAND-OUTS TO ADDICTS THE HAGUE, Nov 24 (Reuters) - The Dutch health ministry said on Tuesday it would extend an experiment to distribute free heroin to hard core drug addicts after a three-month pilot scheme proved a success. In the first phase of the revolutionary scheme, launched in July, 24 addicts in Amsterdam and 21 in Rotterdam received heroin hand-outs. Participants were monitored for signs of health and behavioral problems. ``During the first phase there were no serious, undesired side-effects in terms of public order, criminality and medical safety,'' the health ministry said in a statement. [snip] Pubdate: Tue, 24 Nov 1998 Source: Reuters Copyright: 1998 Reuters Limited. URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1075.a07.html *** COMMENT: Variability of national attitudes toward drug use was acknowledged in this article from Le Figaro. Note that the one thing they had no trouble agreeing on was access to the money. DRUGS: CACOPHONY IN THE EUROPEAN UNION (Drogue: Cacophonie Dans L'union) On the day before the opening of the European Week for the Prevention of Drug Addiction, legislation varies from one country to the next. In France, the debate on decriminalization of certain substances has never been able to be conducted calmly. Even though the European Week for the Prevention of Drug Addiction (SEPT) begins Monday and will continue through the 22nd of November, the member states of the European Union have still not succeeded in harmonizing their legislation concerning illegal drugs. The only exceptions concern the traffic in drugs and money laundering. From 1999, the Treaty of Amsterdam will permit an effective collaboration between the various police forces, customs, and fiscal authorities of the countries of the European Union. But concerning the use of drugs, penal sanctions, and the sale of drugs, the law varies from one country to the next. [snip] Pubdate: Sat-Sun, 14-15 November, 1998 Source: Le Figaro (France) Page: Section "Notre Vie" Website: http://www.lefigaro.fr/ Copyright: Le Figaro 1998 Translation from French: Peter Webster http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n1078.a05.html *** HOT OFF THE 'NET CD Recording From the Mouths of Drug War Prisoners The November Coalition
is proud to announce the release of their long awaited 'Prisoner Audio CD'. This project was generously funded with a grant from DPF and collects in audio cd form, 24 messages from Drug War Prisoners and family members. This powerful activist tool will be distributed free to radio. It is also available for sale as a TNC fund raiser for $11 post paid. This 'labor of love' was painstakingly pieced together over a 2 year period. It is the voice of the prisoner. It is a document of pain and anguish that communicates the affects of our drug war in emotional terms anyone can understand. The cd comes with 3 pages of well documented facts and figures guaranteed to raise eyebrows with even staunch Drug War supporters. TNC is also looking for volunteers to help distribute the cd to community radio. You needn't be radio savvy- on-line coaching will ensure you make an effective presentation (it's all done by email, the Internet and the post office). Cd's can be purchased for $11 each or 10 for $70. Order yours today. TNC 795 S. Cedar Colville, WA 99114 If you'd like to join our Radio Team, talk distribution strategy, or know more about our project you can email me at: email@example.com John Humphrey (Project Coordinator) firstname.lastname@example.org (John Humphrey) *** New Republic Ads by Common Sense for Drug Policy Common Sense for Drug Policy has been running a series of advertisements in the "New Republic" discussing drug policy. The first ad called Barry McCaffrey to task for getting his facts wrong, the second compared the results of U.S. and Dutch drug policy, the third debunked some common myths about cannabis, and the most recent, published on November 30th, illustrated how American Constitutional rights and freedoms are being gradually eroded by the war on drugs. The advertisements may be read online at: http://www.drugsense.org/ads/ *** QUOTE OF THE WEEK "The More Corrupt the State the More Numerous the Laws" - Tacitus *** SPECIAL NOTICES NOVEMBER NEWSHAWK OF THE MONTH - JANE MARCUS *** The following is a DrugSense interview with our NewsHawk of the Month, Jane Marcus DS: How did you get into newshawking? Jane: In 1995 I took a course from the Stanford University Continuing Studies program on U.S. Drug Policy taught by former San Jose Police Chief, Dr. Joseph McNamara. I later served as on-line teaching assistant when videotapes of the course were broadcast on Stanford's cable channel. People who were watching the lectures and discussing them on-line joined a small email list, and I started sending them copies of relevant articles. MAP Board member, Dr. Tom O'Connell, joined the list and soon after suggested that I participate in the MAP effort. DS: What do you consider the most significant story/issue of the past months? Jane: The two most important recent stories are the total success of the medical marijuana initiatives across the country and the resounding defeat of Dan Lungren in California. I await the new Gray Davis/Bill Lockyer era with renewed hope that the Prop. 215 stalemate will end. DS: What is your favorite website? Jane: No day is complete without my visit to MAP's Drug News Index and the New York Times Forum on Drug policy (http://forums.nytimes.com/webin/WebX?13@@.eeb88c7 - readers who have not previously visited the site will need to register). It's especially gratifying to see articles I sent to MAP linked to by posters on NYT forum. DS: Is there anything else you would like to tell the readers of the weekly? Jane: In graduate school I did research on communication theory and learned a great deal about how new ideas spread. I learned that the news media are important vehicles for bringing information about new ideas to the public, but it is interpersonal communication that is most effective in getting people to adopt new ideas. Certainly the growth of the Internet will be a critical tool in bringing information about drug policy to the portion of the population that is on-line. But good old fashioned person-to-person communication is needed for people to actually change their minds. I encourage everyone to get out and talk to your friends, co-workers and acquaintances to let them know that reasonable people just like themselves are "just saying KNOW" to drug policy status quo. DS NOTE: Jane would also like readers to know that she works full-time outside the home and shares her busy life with a husband and two teenage children who support her activism. She is also a charter member of FAMILY WATCH, a network of groups and individuals concerned about the impact of drug policy on families, women and children. (For more information about Family Watch, visit their new and growing website at http://FamilyWatch.org/ or contact Kendra Wright at Kendra@FamilyWatch.org ) The Family Watch site is still under construction but well worth a visit and perhaps linking to. *** THANKS ALSO TO DON BECK AND KEVIN FANSLER We would also like to acknowledge DrugNews Screeners - Don Beck and Kevin Fansler who screen hundreds of news articles a week, make decisions as to the most important, and forward this refined information to Tom O'Connell. This has proven to dramatically reduce the workload in filtering and preparing the DrugSense Weekly. *** DS Weekly is one of the many free educational services DrugSense offers our members. Watch this feature to learn more about what DrugSense can do for you. TO SUBSCRIBE, UNSUBSCRIBE, OR UPDATE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS: Please utilize the following URLs http://www.drugsense.org/hurry.htm and http://www.drugsense.org/unsub.htm News/COMMENTS-Editor: Tom O'Connell (email@example.com) Senior-Editor: Mark Greer (firstname.lastname@example.org) We wish to thank all our contributors and Newshawks. NOTICE: In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. REMINDER: Please help us help reform. Send any news articles you find on any drug related issue to email@example.com *** NOW YOU CAN DONATE TO DRUGSENSE ON-LINE AND IT'S TAX DEDUCTIBLE DrugSense provides many services to at no charge BUT THEY ARE NOT FREE TO PRODUCE. We incur many costs in creating our many and varied services. If you are able to help by contributing to the DrugSense effort visit our convenient donation web site at http://www.drugsense.org/donate.htm -OR- Mail in your contribution. Make checks payable to MAP Inc. send your contribution to: The Media Awareness Project (MAP) Inc. d/b/a DrugSense PO Box 651 Porterville, CA 93258 (800) 266 5759 MGreer@mapinc.org http://www.mapinc.org/ http://www.drugsense.org/ -------------------------------------------------------------------
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