------------------------------------------------------------------- NORML Foundation Weekly News Release (Body's Own Marijuana-Like Agents Holds Hope For High Blood Pressure Patients; Marijuana For Pain, MS Trials Approved In England; Support for Medical Marijuana, Industrial Hemp Strong, State Survey Shows; Oklahoma Governor To Decide Medical Marijuana Patient's Fate This Month) From: NORMLFNDTN@aol.com Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 17:51:52 EST Subject: NORML WPR 1/14/99 (II) NORML Foundation Weekly News Release 1001 Connecticut Ave., NW Ste. 710 Washington, DC 20036 202-483-8751 (p) 202-483-0057 (f) www.norml.org email@example.com January 14, 1999 *** Body's Own Marijuana-Like Agents Holds Hope For High Blood Pressure Patients January 14, 1999, Nottingham, England: Marijuana-like compounds produced naturally by the body may hold the key to reducing high blood pressure, research at the University of Nottingham Medical School suggests. "These are natural substances present in all our bodies that seem to have important effects on our circulation," said Professor Brian Pentecost, medical director of the British Heart Foundation. "Hopefully, this project will shed new light on how we could use these effects to help heart patients." The British Heart Foundation is funding the Nottingham study. Preliminary research reveals that anandamide, an endogenous marijuana like substance, relaxes blood vessels and may reduce blood pressure. "This research should tell us a great deal more about how these substances affect our circulation," said Dr. David Kendall of The Queen's Medical Centre. "This is a new and exciting area of research which could ultimately lead to better treatments for a range of cardiovascular diseases." Researchers first identified anandamide in 1992 and are just now beginning to study how the agent interacts with the body to control pain and other functions. Scientists named the compound after the Sanskrit word for eternal bliss. For more information, please contact either Paul Armentano or Allen St. Pierre of The NORML Foundation @ (202) 483-8751. *** Marijuana For Pain, MS Trials Approved In England January 14, 1999, London, England: Two government sanctioned clinical trials on the therapeutic value of marijuana will begin shortly, the governing body for British pharmacists announced this week. The two protocols seek to determine marijuana's ability to control muscle spasms in multiple sclerosis patients and provide relief to post-operative pain sufferers. "The potential benefits of cannabis are absolutely enormous," said Dr. Geoffrey Guy, who is licensed by the government to grow marijuana for medical research. "We are really only beginning to take the blinkers off that have been on this material for the last 30 years." The upcoming human trials will adhere to strict guidelines approved Monday by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain. The new guidelines will give the results added scientific weight to groups like the World Health Organization, who remain skeptical of marijuana's medical value, a RPS spokesman said. The first study will involve approximately 600 MS patients. Volunteers will be divided into three groups. The first will receive conventional medication for controlling muscle spasms while a second group will consume standardized doses of marijuana. A third will only receive doses of THC, an active compound in marijuana, to help researchers determine if constituents in marijuana other than THC have medicinal benefit. Patients will likely consume marijuana through a special inhaler designed to administer measured amounts of the drug. The second series of trials will follow similar guidelines and involve approximately 300 volunteers suffering from acute post-operative pain disorder or cancer. Researchers said they expect to present their findings within two years. Botanists recently harvested 5,000 marijuana plants from a secret, government farm to supply volunteers with the drug. Dr. Guy praised the British government's willingness to support medical marijuana research. "We enjoy a very liberal research environment," he said. "Our first objective is to get research done, not to find a thousand reasons to block it." For more information, please contact either Allen St. Pierre or Paul Armentano of The NORML Foundation @ (202) 483-8751. *** Support for Medical Marijuana, Industrial Hemp Strong, State Survey Shows January 14, 1999, Missoula, Montana: More than two-thirds of Montanans support the use of marijuana for medical purposes and believe that legislators should legalize hemp cultivation, according to a survey conducted by Montanans for Medical Rights. "Montanans are known for their common sense and this survey confirms that," said John Masterson of Montana NORML. The survey polled approximately 400 respondents from more than 50 counties. Sixty-nine percent of respondents said they supported the medically approved use of marijuana, and 65 percent said they would back a legislator who advocated medical marijuana reform. The high degree of support mimics percentages found in national polls conducted by ABC News, CBS News, Luntz Research and others showing majority support for medical marijuana. "With such a high percentage of Montanans saying they would support a legislator in favor of medical marijuana, it will be interesting to see which lawmakers rise to the occasion," Masterson said. Seventy percent of respondents said they supported the cultivation of hemp for industrial purposes. At least 29 nations, including Canada, France, England, Germany, Japan, and Australia, allow farmers to cultivate the non-psychoactive crop for its fiber content. Sixty-four percent of respondents said that they believed marijuana's potential harm to health were no greater than those posed by alcohol. Respondents were evenly divided on whether marijuana smokers should continue to face criminal penalties. For more information, please contact either Allen St. Pierre of The NORML Foundation @ (202) 483-8751 or Montana NORML @ (406) 542-8696. Raw figures are available online from Montana NORML at: http://www.montananorml.org/survey.txt. *** Oklahoma Governor To Decide Medical Marijuana Patient's Fate This Month January 14, 1999, Oklahoma City, OK: Gov. Frank Keating will decide this month whether to accept or reject a parole board order to release medical marijuana patient Will Foster from jail. Keating received Foster's unanimous recommendation for parole late last month and must make a decision within 30 days. An Oklahoma jury sentenced Foster in 1997 to 93 years in jail for cultivating marijuana in a 25-square foot underground shelter and other lesser marijuana-related charges. Foster maintains that he grew the marijuana to alleviate the pain of rheumatoid arthritis; however, Oklahoma law does not accept the defense of medical necessity as a basis for acquittal on a marijuana charge. This fall, an appeals court panel found Foster's sentence excessive and reduced the term to 20 years. At Foster's first parole board hearing days later, officials unanimously voted to release him on parole upon approval from the governor. The NORML Foundation urges concerned parties to contact the governor and demand parole for Will Foster so he may be reunited with his family. Contact Gov. Frank Keating at the following address: State Capitol Building, Room 212 Oklahoma City, OK 73105 (P) (405) 521-2342 (F) (405) 521-3317 or (405) 523-4224 For more information on Will Foster, please contact either Keith Stroup, Esq. of NORML @ (202) 483-5500 or Dave Borden of The Drug Reform Coordination Network @ (202) 293-8340. - END -
------------------------------------------------------------------- Federal agents arrest man who aided police (According to the Oregonian, the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service says Louie Lira, who did anti-gang work in Portland for the last eight years and served as an unpaid volunteer with the Portland Police Bureau's Crisis Response Team, is really Gerardo Morales Alejo, who was deported to Mexico in 1985 after robbery and drug convictions in California.) The Oregonian Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Fax: 503-294-4193 Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Forum: http://forums.oregonlive.com/ Federal agents arrest man who aided police * Louie Lira, who did anti-gang work in Portland, is really Gerardo Morales Alejo, who was deported to Mexico in 1985, the INS says Thursday, January 14 1999 By Maxine Bernstein of The Oregonian staff A man who sought to steer youths from gang activity in Portland was taken into custody by federal agents, accused of re-entering the country illegally after having been deported to Mexico in 1985 after robbery and drug convictions. On the job, he used the name Louie Lira. He had worked since 1991 for the Youth Gang Outreach Program, based in Northeast Portland. He also served as an unpaid volunteer with the Portland Police Bureau's Crisis Response Team, helping to counsel families or friends of crime victims. But agents from the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service say Lira was actually Gerardo Morales Alejo, 40, and was deported from the United States in 1985 after arrests in California. Two INS agents, accompanied by an FBI agent, took Alejo into custody about noon Friday in the parking lot of the Youth Gang Outreach Program, said Phil Crawford, deputy director in the INS Portland office. Alejo is also being investigated by the FBI in a separate criminal matter, police said, but FBI spokesman Gordon Compton on Wednesday said he could not confirm or deny that. John Canda, director of the Youth Gang Outreach Program, confirmed that Alejo worked for the program for the past eight years but declined further comment. "I can't make any more statements," Canda said. In 1985, Alejo was deported from California after he was convicted of robbery, possession of narcotics and being under the influence of narcotics, Crawford said. In Portland, Alejo worked closely with officers from the police Gang Enforcement Team. For at least the past four years, Alejo was a volunteer with the police Crisis Response Team, and worked to defuse retaliatory violence after gang-related shootings or other criminal activity occurred, Northeast Precinct Cmdr. Derrick Foxworth said. The bureau provided him with a volunteer identification card, a police jacket and pager and, at times, a police radio to help him monitor calls. "We're making efforts to recover that equipment," Foxworth said. "He's no longer considered to be a part of the Crisis Response Team." Police said the bureau did conduct a criminal background check on the man they knew as Lira before he was allowed to be a bureau volunteer. No prior arrests turned up because police did not realize his true identity and had no reason to suspect him. He was not the person he claimed to be because he provided identification under the name Louie Lira, Foxworth said. If police had suspected a problem, they would have run a check on his fingerprints, Foxworth said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Weapons will boost firepower for police (The Oregonian says that with little discussion or debate, the Portland city council awarded a $103,771 contract Wednesday to Specialized Armament Warehouse of Chandler, Arizona, to provide the Portland Police Bureau with 175 semiautomatic rifles. Officials didn't cite any local incidents that might have turned out more favorably if police had had bigger guns.) The Oregonian Contact: email@example.com 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Fax: 503-294-4193 Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Forum: http://forums.oregonlive.com/ Weapons will boost firepower for police * The Portland City Council will buy semiautomatic rifles to help officers fight criminals' sophisticated arsenals Thursday, January 14 1999 By Maxine Bernstein of The Oregonian staff The City Council Wednesday awarded a $103,771 contract to an Arizona-based gun dealer to provide the Portland Police Bureau with 175 semiautomatic rifles. The Colt AR-15s, which have shortened barrels and hold .223-caliber ammunition, will give police greater firepower at a time when the bureau is concerned about being outgunned by criminals with sophisticated weapons. The semiautomatic rifles are considered more accurate at longer ranges than the Glock 9mm handguns and 12-gauge shotguns that officers now carry, Portland Firearms Sgt. Larry Baird said. Police expect to have them in patrol cars sometime this fall, Baird said. The bureau still has to develop a policy on who will use the weapons, when they will be fired and how they will be mounted in patrol cars. Firearms instructors are expected to be trained on their use this summer, and they, in turn, will provide training to the rank-and-file officers, Baird said. "The chief wants to get these out on the streets as fast as we can. We're already six months behind where we thought we should have been," Baird said. Changes in the bid specifications for the rifles caused a delay in their purchase. With little discussion or debate, the council Wednesday voted unanimously to award Specialized Armament Warehouse, of Chandler, Ariz., the contract. The company was one of three bidders, providing the middle offer that priced each Colt AR-15 semiautomatic rifle at $591, and each 20-round clip at $11.50. The low bidder, Keith A. Ward of Keith's Sportings Goods Inc. in Gresham, submitted a letter to the council objecting to that award. The Police Bureau rejected the Gresham company's bid, saying it did not meet technical specifications. "This is simply not true," Ward wrote in his letter. "Before the council allows an additional $14,000 to be spent to no one's benefit, other than the dealers profit, I would hope a thorough review of the process be conducted." Ward did not attend Wednesday's council meeting. Police gave a short presentation, and the council voted to accept their recommendation. In a report to the city recommending the purchase of the rifles, the bureau said it was seeking parity with heavily armed criminals. The bureau had been discussing alternatives to the shotguns for years but began in earnest in August 1997, six months after a highly publicized shootout between Los Angeles police and two heavily armed bank robbers. In the past two years, two Portland officers have been shot to death, one while chasing a suspect, the other during a drug raid gone sour.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Air scope turns up heat on crime (The Oregonian says the Oregon State Police have a new helicopter equipped with a Forward-Looking Infrared Detection unit, or FLIR, that will allow them to find the warm bodies of fleeing felons in the dark. One assumes the unit will spend the rest of its time flying around looking for midnight gardens.] The Oregonian Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Fax: 503-294-4193 Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Forum: http://forums.oregonlive.com/ Air scope turns up heat on crime Thursday, January 14 1999 By Peter Farrell of The Oregonian staff The Oregon State Police are catching up with television stations when it comes to fancy camera work. OK, some TV news departments have more helicopters. For the state police, it's the Power of One. But that one helicopter, which does almost all of the police helicopter work in Oregon, now can find warm bodies in the dark -- bad news for fleeing felons. In its first weeks in the air, the heat-seeking FLIR scope has assisted in two searches over wide areas, helping catch a carjacking suspect and a suspect who fired shots at police from a vehicle that was reported stolen. Police recovered guns in both cases. The Forward-Looking Infrared Detection unit, or FLIR, that helped police arrest the suspects is similar to that used in TV news coverage and by firefighters trying to see through smoke. The infrared devices compare heat readings to form TV-like images. The scope is on loan from FLIR Systems, the Portland company that makes and sells thermal imaging systems for government agencies and private companies here and abroad. Senior Trooper Erik Vognild, who pilots the state police helicopter, said that in the two recent nighttime police searches, units on the ground had the general area surrounded. In an Amity police pursuit the day after Christmas, the helicopter and infrared system saved police the trouble of searching acres of field and brush. Police were chasing a suspected drunken driver in a stolen pickup on Oregon 233 when someone fired shots from the pickup. Near McMinnville Airport, the driver jumped out and ran into the brush. Vognild swept over the open area in the helicopter and was quickly able to determine that no people were in the woods. Instead, the FLIR scope detected a spot where the man had lain down and his body heat had left the ground a little warm. "Because I was able to eliminate the field, that narrowed the search to where there were some buildings," Vognild said. "That's where the suspect was found by the people on the ground." Timber Mac Morrow, 24, was arrested and accused of attempted first-degree assault, being a felon in possession of a firearm, probation violations and other crimes. A woman who surrendered when the pickup stopped was arrested on similar accusations. Police said they found three guns in the truck and a fourth on the ground nearby. Vognild had been involved in a similar hunt Dec. 8 after armed carjackers took a Corvette from people in an RV park in Grand Ronde. The car flipped over about a mile away. Two people ran, and Polk County deputies began a search over a large patch of scotch broom and blackberry brambles. They called for Vognild and his FLIR imager. The thermal imager's temperature sensor showed Vognild why the searching officers and their police dog were having trouble finding the two. They were in a bog, hiding in the water. "The water was cool and there was a heat picture where there shouldn't have been a heat picture," Vognild said. "They stuck out like a sore thumb." Vognild showed the ground officers where the men were. The State Police pilot calls that search only a partial success because the older of the two men ran a second time and got away. Vognild was low on fuel and couldn't finish the hunt. A farmer found the fugitive the next morning in a barn, where he had hanged himself. He was Jeffery Elbert Stires, 27, who had put a blanket over barbed wire to escape from a Montana jail where he had been held on a domestic assault complaint. He was identified as the man who fired a warning shot into the floor of a camper as he demanded the keys to a man's 1980 Corvette. Hundreds of FLIR Systems infrared devices are in use, said Doug Little, public relations manager of the Portland company. But the Oregon State Police, strapped for cash in its last several budgets, could not afford the $250,000 to $500,000 cost of a complete system. So the company loaned the agency a scope. In return, FLIR plans to test its designs with Vognild's help. Vognild said the scope is simple to operate, but he is still learning how to tell people on the ground where a target is. Locating something with navigational readings adds complexity. "It's not quite the same as shining my spotlight on them," he said. One of the fancy add-ons for the system is a slave unit that would automatically point the spotlight at the target on the scope. The big advantage the scope provides at night seems much more dramatic than its daytime uses, but that could change if Vognild ever needs to find lost people or fugitives wearing camouflage in the woods or white clothing on snow. "It doesn't care what you are wearing,"Vognild said. "It just measures heat. If you are warmer or cooler than what is around you, it will find you." Kathleen Blythe of The Oregonian library helped research this story.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Three firefighters slightly injured after propane explosion (The Associated Press notes Multnomah County has apparently resorted to forfeiture by other means in its campaign to take the property where David Crowther, a Portland prohibition agent, was justifiably homicided in 1979 during a warrantless break-in.)Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 05:14:45 -0800 From: Paul Freedom (email@example.com) Organization: Oregon Libertarian Patriots To: Constitutional Cannabis Patriots (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: POLICE BURN THE HOUSE! Three firefighters slightly injured after propane explosion The Associated Press 1/14/99 3:40 AM PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- Three Portland firefighters are recovering from minor injuries after an explosion at a run-down home with a notorious past. Firefighters responded to a two-alarm fire in the basement of the home at 1:29 p.m. Wednesday. One firefighter reported hearing a hissing sound before the explosion blew him backward off his feet. The blast shattered glass and tore curtains from the windows of the house in the St. Johns neighborhood in north Portland. Police cordoned off a two-block area while firefighters used a ladder crane to spray hundreds of gallons of water into second-story windows. The home is the center of much debate in the neighborhood. Multnomah County wants to build a medical clinic on the property and has been negotiating with owner Larry Anderson for three years. On Oct. 3, Anderson was arrested during a police raid at the home on suspicion of distributing and possessing methamphetamine and manufacturing explosives. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges. The home is also where Portland Police Officer David Crowther was fatally shot during a 1979 drug raid. Two of the injured firefighters were treated at the scene. Firefighter Luther Gay was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was treated and released. *** This is just the beginning. This house was raided in October and they never produced the small amount of methamphetamine and the guns looked legal. They shot and killed all four Rottweiler on the spot! This is the house where officer David Crowther was killed in 1979 when it was home to the Outsiders motorcycle club. The shooting was later ruled justified and cops went to prison for planting drugs. Now it appears the police have burned the house!
------------------------------------------------------------------- Senate briefing I-692 (A list subscriber forwards a notice from Washington state senator Jeanne Kohl about a Department of Health briefing in Olympia Jan. 21 regarding implementation of Initiative 692, the voter-approved medical marijuana law.) Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 10:02:35 -0800 (PST) From: Robert Lunday (email@example.com) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: HT: Senate briefing I-692 (fwd) Sender: email@example.com Mark your calendars for Thursday, Jan 21st. ---------- Forwarded message ---------- Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 09:56:03 -0800 From: "Kohl, Sen. Jeanne" (KOHL_JE@leg.wa.gov) To: "'Lunday, Robert'" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: Senate briefing I-692 The Department of Health will be giving a briefing on I-692 implementation before the Sen. Health & Long-Term Care Committee on Jan. 21 at 1:30 p.m. in Sen. Hearing Room 4. *** hemp-talk - email@example.com is a discussion/information list about hemp politics in Washington State. To unsubscribe, send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with the text "unsubscribe hemp-talk". For more details see http://www.hemp.net/lists.html
------------------------------------------------------------------- A Drug Sniffing Society (Officials at Boise High School who are considering urine tests for students who wish to participate in extracurricular activities cause Boise Weekly columnist Bill Cope to come out against the drug war. One of these days, we Americans - Idaho Americans in particular and Canyon County Americans in particular - are gonna have to sit down and figure out exactly what and how much we're willing to give up to keep waging the war on illegal drugs. Don't expect it to happen anytime real soon, though. To conduct a reasonable community discussion that might result in some reasonable community solutions, it's going to take some reasonable community leaders. At this point in the endless war, you'd have more luck spearing squid out of Lake Lowell than in finding a local official with the guts to suggest the drug problem has not been, nor will it be, solved by the us-versus-them policy that's been flopping about on the deck of America's ship of state for three decades now, all the time crushing more and more of what keeps the boat afloat in the first place.) Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 10:45:54 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US ID: Column: A Drug Sniffing Society Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Henders88@aol.com Pubdate: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 Source: The Boise Weekly (ID) Copyright: 1999 The Boise Weekly Contact: email@example.com FAX: (208) 342-4733 Mail: 109 South 4th Street, Boise, ID 83702 Website: http://www.boiseweekly.com/ Columnist: Bill Cope Note: The website states that "Bill Cope is a moderate contributor to Boise Weekly." A DRUG SNIFFING SOCIETY 'I suspect that some of these cars they are going to pick up on are going to have merchandise with no receipts.' --Sheriff George Nourse, anticipating an incidental benefit to the use of drug-detecting dogs in Canyon County parking lots. 'Shucks, they might even flush out an ACLU lawyer or two.' -- Anonymous drug-detecting-dog enthusiast, anticipating a perfect world. One of these days, we Americans--Idaho Americans in particular and Canyon County Americans in particular--are gonna have to sit down and figure out exactly what and how much we're willing to give up to keep waging the war on illegal drugs. Don't expect it to happen anytime real soon, though. To conduct a reasonable community discussion that might result in some reasonable community solutions, it's going to take some reasonable community leaders. At this point in the endless war, you'd have more luck spearing squid out of Lake Lowell than in finding a local official with the guts to suggest the drug problem has not been, nor will it be, solved by the us-versus-them policy that's been flopping about on the deck of America's ship of state for three decades now, all the time crushing more and more of what keeps the boat afloat in the first place. I bring it up because over the last several weeks people in a position to have their public fingers in our private pies are encouraging some definite escalation on the drug battlefield. The mayor of Boise, for instance, has suggested that every employer in Idaho should require employees to tinkle in a jam jar now and then and submit the contents for chemical analysis. Officials at Boise High School are considering a policy that would demand that students who wish to participate in extracurricular activities first pass a drug screen. And most controversial, if not most intrusive, 2-C Sheriff George Nourse is walking narcotics dogs around Canyon County parking lots in search of stray methamphetamine spoor. This war has already cost us a bundle, and I'm not talking about mere money. Sure, the billions the nation has poured down this rabbit hole add up to some significant bread, but we can always make more money. We can flush durn near more money than you can imagine into septic systems like Vietnam, 'Star Wars,' tobacco subsidies, Ken Starr--yet we always bounce back, don't we? If there's one thing this country does well, it's making more money. But there are other expenses not so easily bounced back from. It's not so easy to recoup the hundreds of thousands of wasted lives once they've withered away under the poverty of addiction or inside the razor-wire reservations filling up the desert heart of America. It's not so easy to uncorrupt local law-enforcement agencies, federal mega-bureaucracies, and entire foreign countries once the deluge of both drug and anti-drug monies have corrupted them. It's not so easy to unweave a criminal drug empire once it's been woven. And it won't be so easy to un-erode our civil liberties once they've been eroded to promote an impossibly pristine vision. Take my word for it. Hell, don't take my word for it. Take Thomas Jefferson's word for it. Take the Weimar Republic's word for it. Once those civil liberties are gone, they're damn tough to get back. So how many random pee tests are you willing to endure to ensure a drug-free workplace? If one a month is such a swell idea, maybe three a day is better. Maybe you wouldn't mind a permanent catheter running straight from your bladder to the boss' office. Are you pleased that your kids might have to test negative before they can join debate club, play football for the home team, tootle flute in the pep band, or engage in any of those activities that would naturally distract their attentions away from the drug culture? Maybe you'd be even happier if the brats couldn't attend school at all until they prove they're clean. No sense teaching a druggie how to function in life, huh? I know you personally have nothing to hide from those pooches sniffing at your mini-van, citizen, so maybe you wouldn't mind if they check out your home, too. Just to be on the safe side. These are just a few of the things we need to hash out, fellow Americans. Just how far do we go? All the way, like with the National Guard on permanent border patrol, troops on the streets, and mandatory urinalysis at the polls? Might work, and it'll only cost us the democracy. Or maybe we could discuss decriminalizing the stuff--regulating the trade, cleansing the poisons from the substance, stripping profits from the dealers, offering treatment instead of jail time, looking for medical answers instead of prison space. That, too, might work--if we're willing to accept a certain level of dependency. Or we could continue along as we are--pouring good billions upon bad, building a prison nation, enriching the crime cartels, and watching people die. We already know it doesn't work, but it does keep the dogs busy.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Political Shift May Usher In New Pot Club (The San Francisco Chronicle says that despite pledges from the federal government to shut her down, Jane Weirick, the executive director of the San Francisco Patients Resource Center, plans to open a new medical marijuana dispensary. She hopes to have the facility running in six weeks or less, as soon as she locates a building to house the club. The Oakland Cannabis Buyers' Cooperative has agreed to handle the club's eligibility paperwork and issue membership cards. Organizers are hoping the election of Bill Lockyer as Attorney General will lead to a compromise with the federal government that would allow medical marijuana dispensaries to re-emerge in California to fulfill the mandate of Proposition 215.) Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 10:39:11 -0600 From: "Frank S. World" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Rx Cannabis Now! http://www.geocities.com/CapitolHill/Lobby/7417/ To: DRCNet Medical Marijuana Forum (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: US CA SF CHRON: Political Shift May Usher In New Pot Club Sender: email@example.com Source: San Francisco Chronicle Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Pubdate: Thursday, January 14, 1999 (c)1999 San Francisco Chronicle POLITICAL SHIFT MAY USHER IN NEW POT CLUB Glen Martin, Chronicle Staff Writer Heartened by the change of administrations in Sacramento, advocates of medical marijuana are gearing up to open a new medicinal pot club in San Francisco -- even though they may be headed straight for a federal shutdown. State and local authorities have indicated tacit support for a new club, a marked change in policy from Sacramento. This week, however, federal officials said they could not allow a new club to remain open. Supporters of medical marijuana say the city generally has been bereft of legal pot since the San Francisco Cannabis Cultivators Club was closed in April. The San Francisco Sheriff's Department shut the club on a Superior Court order after a long campaign against the outlet by former Attorney General Dan Lungren. But now that Democrat Bill Lockyer is attorney general, say the advocates, the time is ripe for therapeutic pot clubs to once again open their doors in San Francisco. ``A couple of small outlets are currently operating, but the level of service they can provide is really minimal,'' said Jane Weirick, the executive director of the San Francisco Patients Resource Center, an ad hoc organization that plans to open the new club. Weirick envisions an outlet comparable in size to the old Cannabis Cultivators Club, which served about 9,000 patients under the direction of its controversial leader, Dennis Peron. Weirick said her group is searching for a building to house the new club, which she hopes to have running in six weeks or less. The group has enough money to start, said Weirick, ``but we could always use more.'' One thing that will not inhibit the opening is the availability -- or rather, unavailability -- of the high-quality pot needed for medical use, said Weirick. ``There's a lot of it around,'' she said. ``That's the least of our problems.'' Weirick said the new club will operate along stricter guidelines than the old CCC. Peron was pilloried and ultimately prosecuted for what law enforcement officials said was a lax operation. ``We plan to run a very tight ship, using the model for the Oakland Cannabis Club, which set up a very workable system,'' she said. ``In fact, the Oakland club will handle all our eligibility paperwork and issue our membership cards,'' she said. ``They're already geared up to do it, and there's no point in reinventing the wheel. Eventually, we'd like to see a statewide cooperative of clubs that would all honor the same cards.'' Jeff Jones, the executive director of the Oakland Cannabis Club -- which saw its dispensary shut down October 20 by federal marshals -- said his eligibility requirements are simple but tough. ``First, we get a letter of recommendation from a physician,'' he said. ``Then we have a staff nurse call the physician to make sure the recommendation is not fraudulent. Then we call the state medical board to make sure the physician can legally prescribe drugs and that there are no complaints against his or her license.'' As far as the planned San Francisco club goes, said Weirick, only cardholders authorized to buy marijuana will be allowed into the areas where the pot is dispensed. ``That way there will be no doubt about the legality of the operation under Proposition 215 (the medical marijuana initiative that passed in 1996).'' Proposition 215 decriminalizes the use and possession of medical marijuana at the state level, but pot remains illegal under federal law. ``It is still a controlled substance under the U.S. Controlled Substances Act,'' said Evelyn James, the public information officer for the San Francisco office of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. ``That hasn't changed.'' ``Our position (in San Francisco) is that because it is a controlled substance, it would be appropriate to move against a new club,'' she said. With such a shutdown in mind, Weirick said, the new club will have a separate clinic and administrative center. ``That way, we'll be able to conduct patient support even if the clinic (where the marijuana is dispensed) is forced to close,'' she said. Weirick's group seems to be getting a green light from city officials. San Francisco District Attorney Terence Hallinan said a major medical marijuana outlet is a good idea for San Francisco -- as long as it is tightly regulated. ``I've always said that it is more of a health issue than a legal issue,'' he said. ``Locally, this should strictly be a matter for the city Department of Health.'' Weirick said Peron will have no direct involvement in the new club ``except as a spiritual adviser. Without him, we never would have come this far.'' Flamboyant and aggressively partisan, Peron opened his first cannabis club in 1992. He soon became a prime target for state prosecutors. State agents raided his Market Street outlet in August 1996. Three months later, voters approved Proposition 215, the medical marijuana legalization initiative that Peron had drafted. Despite 215's passage, Lungren continued his campaign against Peron. State charges for the illegal possession and distribution of marijuana remain outstanding against Peron and several associates, though it is unclear whether Lockyer -- who voted for Proposition 215 -will continue to pursue the matter. ``There are no plans at this time (to drop) that case,'' said Hilary McLean, a spokeswoman for Lockyer. McLean said that Lockyer generally supports the idea of medical marijuana but that he has some problems with Proposition 215. ``Bill voted for the initiative, and he has always supported access to appropriate medicine for people who need it,'' she said, noting that Lockyer's mother and sister both died of leukemia. ``But he has also said he sees some real problems with 215,'' McLean said. ``It runs counter to federal law, and it is in conflict with some aspects of state law. Bill wants to work out some kind of accommodation with the federal government and state legislators so that the people who truly need this medicine can get it.'' Hallinan also thinks the federal government could inhibit the resuscitation of San Francisco's cannabis clubs. The U.S. Department of Justice filed suit against six state cannabis clubs last year, and federal agencies apparently remain uniformly opposed to medical marijuana. Still, Hallinan is moderately optimistic. ``With a new state administration, we can hopefully reach an accommodation with the feds,'' said Hallinan. ``The main reason they came down so hard on the clubs in the past was because Lungren was urging them to do it.'' DEA agent James said that she didn't know if the advent of a new administration in Sacramento could presage a change in the opinions of U.S. Department of Justice and DEA administrators regarding medical marijuana. James said that federal agents are unimpressed with Proposition 215 and the thesis that marijuana has genuine therapeutic applications. ``Here you have a situation where the opinion of registered voters takes precedence over the medical establishment,'' she said. ``My heart goes out to people who are sick, but I worry that these folks are being sold a bill of goods -- that they're missing out on legitimate therapies because they've been taken in by the medical marijuana hype.'' (c)1999 San Francisco Chronicle Page A15
------------------------------------------------------------------- 2 Convicted for Running Indoor Marijuana Farms (A cautionary tale in the Los Angeles Times says Drug Enforcement Administration agents picked up the trail of the defendants, Daniel Carson Adams, and his son-in-law, Earl Martin Torgerson, by staking out a hydroponics equipment store in North Hollywood and following one of the suspects after he purchased supplies. Six defendants have now been convicted for growing more than 1,800 plants in three houses. All face mandatory minimum federal sentences, except the leader of the conspiracy, Gary Manuel Margado, who was the chief witness against the others, apparently in an attempt to shorten his 10-year term.) From: "Bob Owen@W.H.E.N." (email@example.com) To: "_Drug Policy --" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: 2 Convicted for Running Indoor CA Marijuana Farms Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 19:39:10 -0800 Sender: email@example.com Thursday, January 14, 1999 Copyright 1999 Los Angeles Times. All Rights Reserved 2 Convicted for Running Indoor Marijuana Farms * Court: Six people have now been found guilty in a ring that grew more than 1,800 plants in three houses. By DAVID ROSENZWEIG Times Staff Writer Two San Fernando Valley men were convicted Wednesday of taking part in a sophisticated marijuana growing enterprise that operated indoors in three suburban homes. A federal jury returned guilty verdicts against Daniel Carson Adams, 58, of Woodland Hills and his son-in-law, Earl Martin Torgerson, 51, of North Hollywood. Six defendants have now been convicted in the marijuana growing scheme, which operated out of residences in Sherman Oaks, Woodland Hills and La Puente. More than 1,800 plants were being cultivated inside the rented homes using hydroponics, a system of growing plants in nutrient solutions instead of earth. The method has become increasingly popular among marijuana farmers as law enforcement authorities intensify their crackdown on outdoor growing in Northern California. Trial testimony revealed that Drug Enforcement Administration agents picked up the trail of the defendants by staking out a hydroponics equipment store in North Hollywood and following one of the suspects after he purchased supplies. Los Angeles police narcotics officers entered the case about the same time after getting a tip that marijuana was being grown in a two-story house on Morrison Street in Sherman Oaks. The two agencies joined forces and raided the house Sept. 8, seizing 665 marijuana plants in a sealed and windowless section of the home. Further investigation led to another house on Calvert Street in Woodland Hills, where 619 plants were found, and to a home on Don Julian Street in La Puente, where 518 plants were being cultivated. Torgerson and Adams were convicted on three felony counts and are scheduled to be sentenced March 15 by U.S. District Judge Manuel Real. Torgerson faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison; Adams faces a minimum term of five years behind bars. The chief witness against them was Gary Manuel Margado, 62, of Bel-Air, leader of the conspiracy. He pleaded guilty earlier and also faces a minimum 10 years in prison. Assistant U.S. Atty. Michael Lowe, who prosecuted the case, told jurors that Torgerson, who has a college degree in chemistry, served as Margado's chief lieutenant, supervising day-to-day growing operations at the indoor sites. Lowe said documents recovered during police searches indicated that Margado took a 65% cut and Torgerson received 35% of the proceeds after the others in the scheme were paid. Lowe said the operation grossed about $60,000 a month. Defense attorneys said Torgerson and Adams knew nothing about the marijuana growing operation. Adams' lawyer said her client was hired by Margado to be a caretaker at the Woodland Hills house, that he had no access to the marijuana growing operation and that he had lived in the home only six days before it was raided. Torgerson contended that he was supervising remodeling projects at other two homes Margado owned and that he, too, was unaware of the operation. In addition to Margado, those pleading guilty previously were Don Edward Baxter, 29, who lived in the Sherman Oaks house; Michael Onil Estrada, 28, who lived in the La Puente house, and Victor Demeter, 32, of Tustin, Margado's son-in-law. They, too, are awaiting sentencing.
------------------------------------------------------------------- San Francisco Marijuana Reform Forum Feb. 11 (A bulletin from the Lindesmith Center West publicizes a public meeting featuring Keith Stroup of NORML and Dale Gieringer of California NORML.) Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 19:44:20 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Dale Gieringer) Subject: S.F. MJ Reform Forum Feb 11 The Lindesmith Center West Invites You to a Forum: MARIJUANA REFORM 1999 Featuring: Keith Stroup, Executive Director, National Organization for the Refom of Marijuana Laws and Dale Gieringer, Coordinator, California NORML Date: Thursday Feb. 11, 1999, 5-7 p.m. Place: S.F. Medical Society, 1409 Sutter (at Franklin) Open to the public - Phone (415) 921-4987 to reserve a space *** Dale Gieringer (415) 563-5858 // firstname.lastname@example.org 2215-R Market St. #278, San Francisco CA 94114
------------------------------------------------------------------- South Dakota Governor Proposes Mandatory Jail For Drug Offenses (USA Today says Gov. Janklow told state lawmakers in his State of the State address that anyone caught with "drugs" in South Dakota should have to spend at least 30 days in jail.) Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 10:23:09 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US SD: South Dakota Gov. Proposes Mandatory Jail For Drug Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jo-D Harrison Source: USA Today (US) Copyright: 1999 USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Co. Inc. Website: http://www.usatoday.com/news/nfront.htm Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: 14 Jan 1999 Author: from staff and wire reports Page: 5A Note: Headline by MAP Editor South Dakota GOV. PROPOSES MANDATORY JAIL FOR DRUG OFFENSES Pierre - Anyone caught with drugs in South Dakota should have to spend at least 30 days in jail, Gov. Janklow told state lawmakers in his State of the State address. Janklow also said he will offer amnesty during 45 days this spring to anyone who admits to not pay-ing taxes.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marijuana Inhaling May Be Healthy (The Daily O'Collegian at Oklahoma State University covers a campus teach-in by the Drug Policy Forum of Oklahoma. Michael Pearson, the forum's organizer and a registered pharmacist, said studies have proven marijuana to be helpful with multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury spasms, high blood pressure, migraines, joint pain, menstrual problems, asthma and rheumatism. Pearson said patients get prescriptions for Valium from doctors and then trade it on the black market for marijuana, which is rumored to be more effective. Drug companies are reluctant to accept the drug because a plant is difficult to patent, he said, and because marijuana works as an anti-depressant. "What would happen to Prozac and other drugs that make up half [the drug companies'] money?") Date: Mon, 18 Jan 1999 18:32:11 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US OK: Marijuana Inhaling May Be Healthy Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Michael Pearson (firstname.lastname@example.org) Source: The Daily O'Collegian (OK) Contact: email@example.com Webform: http://www.ocolly.okstate.edu/Feedback/default.html Website: http://www.ocolly.okstate.edu/ Author: Jana Clark, Staff Reporter Pubdate: 14 Jan 1999 MARIJUANA INHALING MAY BE HEALTHY An organization that endorses the use of marijuana to help ailing patients met Wednesday at the Wellness Center to discuss the issue. The Drug Policy Forum of Oklahoma explores "alternative drug strategies and issues." The group's goal is to reduce the harm of drugs to individuals and society by determining how to change current drug policies. Michael Pearson, the forum's organizer and a registered pharmacist, advocates the use of marijuana to patients who suffer from certain illnesses. Studies have proven that marijuana has been helpful with multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury spasms, high blood pressure, migraines, joint pain, menstrual problems, asthma and rheumatism, he said. Pearson said marijuana alleviates pain in instances that morphine is effective and can reduce or eliminate the need for opiates or morphine. Marijuana also can enhance the ability of morphine-like drugs. Pearson said using marijuana as medicine is not a new concept. He said the medical use of marijuana originated five thousand years ago in China when physicians used the plant to treat malaria, absent-mindedness and "female disorders." Pearson said he advocates regulation of the drug. "(I advocate) control like tobacco or alcohol is controlled," he said. "We don't want it sold in convenience stores next to the candy." Pearson said individuals should be able to grow marijuana in their back yards. "But the minute (they) start making money, (they) need a license," he said. Other drugs such as Valium are now traded illegally for marijuana. Pearson said patients get prescriptions for Valium from doctors and then trade it on the black market for marijuana, which is rumored to be more effective. Ron duBois, coordinator for the forum, said, the public is suffering the consequences of the government's war on drugs. DuBois said law enforcement has a "lock 'em up and throw away the key" mentality and the public is beginning to see that it has failed. "Treatment is less expensive than incarceration," duBois said. "(It) has a chance to arrest the disease, and (it) has a chance to return those recovering from the disease to full citizenship," he said in an editorial. Pearson said November elections passed medical marijuana ballot questions in five states: Alaska, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon and Washington. Pearson said drug companies are reluctant to accept the drug because a plant is difficult to patent and because marijuana works as an anti-depressant which might compete with other drugs for profits. "What would happen to Prozac and other drugs that make up half (the drug companies') money?" Pearson said. Amy Trogdon, biology premed junior, said she thinks medical marijuana is acceptable under strict, doctors' supervision. "Marijuana may have some medical benefits," she said. "But I'm concerned that if it were allowed in the medical field that the supervision would be lax." Julia White, nutrition premed senior, said, "It's okay to use (marijuana) in a medical situation under strict supervision of a doctor. If it's marijuana or nothing, marijuana should be used."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Progress Made In War On Drugs, Federal Official Reports (The Daily Herald, in Arlington Heights, Illinois, says Donald Vereen Jr., deputy director of the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy, told the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce that use of marijuana among eighth-graders did not increase in 1997.) Date: Fri, 15 Jan 1999 21:32:30 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US IL: Progress Made In War On Drugs, Federal Official Reports Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Steve Young Pubdate: 14 Jan. 1999 Source: Daily Herald (IL) Section: Sec. 1 Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: http://www.dailyherald.com Author: Melissa Galin PROGRESS MADE IN WAR ON DRUGS, FEDERAL OFFICIAL REPORTS A federal drug official Wednesday said that progress is being made in moving toward President Clinton's goal of reducing drug use by 50 percent by 2007. Donald Vereen Jr., deputy director of the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy, reviewed the status of the war on drugs in a speech before the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce in the Palmer House Hilton. Partly as a result of education and prevention efforts, use of marijuana among eighth-graders did not increase in 1997, he said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Drug Testing Expands (The Washington Post, which apparently does not consider alcohol to be a drug, says the number of "drug addicts" released on parole and probation in Maryland who are now required to take twice-weekly urine tests has increased five-fold in the past two months under the state's new "Break the Cycle" program. Under the plan, all 25,000 drug addicts on parole and probation in Maryland eventually will be required to undergo treatment and frequent testing - and face swift, escalating punishments if they skip a treatment session or test positive for "drug" use. The enterprise faces a range of obstacles, particularly if large numbers of ex-offenders test positive and the state is unable to "punish them effectively.") Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 18:07:36 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US MD: Drug Testing Expands Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Rob Ryan Source: Washington Post (DC) Copyright: 1999 The Washington Post Company Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/ Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm Author: Philip P. Pan Pubdate: Thurs, Jan 14, 1999 Page M01 DRUG TESTING EXPANDS State targets more ex-offenders Nearly 6,200 criminals released on parole and probation in Maryland have been ordered to report to authorities twice a week for urine tests as part of a landmark attempt to overhaul how the state supervises drug-addicted ex-offenders, according to state officials. The figure is more than five times higher than it was just two months ago--a sign that the state's ambitious Break the Cycle program is expanding rapidly. Under the plan, all 25,000 drug addicts on parole and probation in Maryland eventually will be required to undergo treatment and frequent testing--and face swift, escalating punishments if they skip a treatment session or test positive for drug use. No other state has tried to hold its entire population of drug-addicted parolees and probationers accountable to such a frequent regimen of testing, and Maryland's attempt to do so is being watched by criminal justice policymakers across the nation. The enterprise faces a range of obstacles, particularly if large numbers of ex-offenders test positive and the state is unable to punish them effectively. But if it succeeds, proponents such as Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend (D) believe it could cut demand for heroin, cocaine and other drugs in the state nearly in half--undermining the illicit drug markets that fuel crime and violence in many neighborhoods. In addition, Townsend and others say, the program could wean thousands of addicts off drugs and bring about sharp reductions in the kinds of low-level crimes that drug offenders are known to commit repeatedly, such as burglaries, thefts, vandalism and prostitution. The testing began slowly this fall in seven jurisdictions: Prince George's, Montgomery, Howard, Charles, Washington and Baltimore counties and Baltimore City. As local judges, probation agents, treatment providers and jail officials worked out the details, the number of ex-offenders ordered into the program jumped sharply, from about 1,200 in the first week of November to nearly 6,200 as of last week. Each jurisdiction has devised its own sanctions for ex-offenders who test positive for drugs or skip treatment sessions. In Prince George's, for example, agents will supervise them more closely after the first infraction, order them to watch court proceedings for two days after the second infraction and impose community service after the third infraction. Further violations would result in more severe penalties, such as home detention, and a seventh violation would put them back in court. The goal is to use the criminal justice system to force drug addicts to remain in treatment--a departure from the conventional wisdom that addicts must "want to change" to kick their habits. "I've been putting people into Break the Cycle, and I'm optimistic it's going to make a difference," said William D. Missouri, the Circuit Court administrative judge in Prince George's. "But I probably won't have a good sense of the results until the beginning of February." Though testing of ex-offenders is well underway in the seven jurisdictions and is set to expand to the rest of the state by the end of the year, it's unclear whether they are being punished quickly or severely enough to change their behavior. "We're still far from where we want to be," said Adam Gelb, Townsend's policy adviser. "The sanctions are not as swift, as certain or as stiff as we'd like to see them, but we are clearly moving in the right direction." Leonard Sipes, a spokesman for the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services, said the state has not yet determined how often ex-offenders are failing the drug tests, how they are being punished when they do so or how many of them are completing treatment programs. He said the greatest obstacle will be trying to force probation agents to act quickly when an ex-offender fails a drug test or misses a treatment appointment. In the past, agents rarely learned when ex-offenders dropped out of treatment, and they could order only seven urine tests a month for their entire caseloads, which average more than 100 ex-offenders apiece. "The challenge is rearranging the culture of parole and probation," Sipes said. "Remember, the average offender has received very little face-to-face contact with agents because of the huge caseloads. . . . Now we're trying to change that for the majority of the active caseload. The bottom line is whether this department can rally to such an intensive supervision strategy." The first hint of how well Break the Cycle is working will come next month, when University of Maryland criminologist Faye Taxman completes a preliminary report on the program's progress in the seven jurisdictions. "The data I have suggest that things are actually moving along pretty smoothly in each of the jurisdictions, but I'm anticipating different problems in different places," she said. "We anticipate most of the jurisdictions will do very well in testing offenders. The question will be, if offenders continue to test positive, how will the agents and judges respond?" Breaking the Cycle The number of drug addicts released on parole and probation in Maryland who are now required to take twice-weekly urine tests as part of the state's new Break the Cycle program has increased five-fold in the past two months. As of Nov. 5, 1998 Baltimore County: 138 Baltimore City: 714 Howard: 55 Charles: 35 Prince George's: 102 Montgomery: 81 Washington: 103 Total: 1,228 As of Jan. 7, 1999 Baltimore County: 415 Baltimore City: 4,800 Howard: 265 Charles: 64 Prince George's: 241 Montgomery: 291 Washington: 118 Total: 6,194
------------------------------------------------------------------- Clinton To Propose Spending $6 Billion To Battle Crime (The Orange County Register says President Clinton was scheduled to venture across the Potomac River today to Alexandria, Virginia, to unveil a new community-policing initiative. The five-year, $6 billion anti-crime package would fund the last 11,500 police officers of the 100,000 a Clinton initiative began to put on the street in 1994.)Date: Sun, 17 Jan 1999 18:12:22 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US: Clinton To Propose Spending $6 Billion To Battle Crime Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: John W. Black Contact: email@example.com Source: Orange County Register (CA) Copyright: 1999 The Orange County Register Website: http://www.ocregister.com/ Pubdate: 14 Jan 1999 CLINTON TO PROPOSE SPENDING $6 BILLION TO BATTLE CRIME President Clinton planned to propose a five-year, $6 billion anti-crime package today that would up the ante on his nearly fulfilled pledge to put 100,000 new cops on the beat nationwide. Bolstered by preliminary data suggesting the number of violent crimes in 1998 could be a 25-year low, Clinton was scheduled to venture across the Potomac River to Alexandria, Va., to unveil a new community-policing initiative. As of October, 88,500 new police officers had been hired under a 1994 anti-crime measure authorizing federal aid to local law enforcement agencies for putting more cops on the street. The Target of 100,000 new officers under the so-called COPS program is expected to be reached in May. Clinton's new budget would ask Congress for $1.3 billion in fiscal 2000 - and a total of $6.4 billion over the next five years - to extend the COPS programs, said Jose Cerda, a crime specialist on the president's Domestic Policy Council.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Police don't have to tell how to get seized property back, high court rules (An Associated Press article in the Miami Herald says the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday unanimously threw out a California couple's lawsuit, prompted by the difficulty they had recovering cash taken by police during a search of their home. Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote, "Once the property owner is informed that his property has been seized, he can turn to . . . public sources to learn about the remedial procedures.")From: "Bob Owen@W.H.E.N." (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: "_Drug Policy --" (email@example.com) Subject: Police don't have to tell how to get seized property back, high court rules` Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 19:50:36 -0800 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Thursday, January 14, 1999 The Miami Herald Police don't have to tell how to get seized property back, high court rules WASHINGTON -- (AP) -- Police don't have to tell people how to get back their property when it is seized under a search warrant, the Supreme Court ruled Wednesday. People can find that out on their own from public sources, the court said. The justices unanimously threw out a California couple's lawsuit over the difficulty they had recovering cash taken by police during a search of their home. Writing for the court, Justice Anthony Kennedy said that when police seize property under a search warrant, due process requires them to give notice that the property was taken. Otherwise, the property's owner might not know who took it, he said. But Kennedy added, ``Once the property owner is informed that his property has been seized, he can turn to . . . public sources to learn about the remedial procedures'' for recovering the property later. ``The city need not take other steps to inform him of his options,'' Kennedy said. Lawrence and Clara Perkins' home was searched by police in West Covina, Calif., in May 1993. The couple had rented a room to a man linked to a shooting death elsewhere in the town. Among the items seized from the house was $2,469 in cash belonging to the Perkinses. No one was at home when the house was searched, but police left a note saying they conducted the search under a court warrant. The note included a list of the items seized and contained a phone number to obtain further information. Lawrence Perkins called the number and was told he needed a court order to get the money returned. Later, he was told there was nothing at the municipal courthouse under his name and that he needed a case number or search warrant number. No city employee told him how to find those numbers. The Perkinses sued the city in 1993, saying the search violated their constitutional rights. The city returned the cash in mid-1994. A federal judge ruled for the city, but the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the city violated Perkins' constitutional rights by giving inadequate notice on how to recover the cash. The Supreme Court said the appeals court was wrong. To uphold the Ninth Circuit court's ruling, ``we would be required to find that due process requires notice that not one state or the federal government has seen fit to require,'' Kennedy wrote. His opinion was joined by Chief Justice William Rehnquist and Justices John Paul Stevens, Sandra Day O'Connor, David Souter, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer. Justice Clarence Thomas, writing for himself and Justice Antonin Scalia, agreed with the result.
------------------------------------------------------------------- DrugSense Focus Alert! PBS Frontline gives reform a major boost (DrugSense asks you to write a letter to the Public Broadcasting Service and other media praising Frontline for its Jan. 12 television documentary on federal drug informants. Plus URLs where you can view or listen to the program.) Date: Thu, 14 Oct 1999 10:12:20 -0700 To: email@example.com From: Mark Greer (MGreer@mapinc.org) Subject: Focus Alert! PBS Frontline gives reform a major boost PLEASE COPY AND DISTRIBUTE DrugSense FOCUS Alert #93 1/14/99 Prepared by Richard Lake FRONTLINE's documentary feature "Snitch" Your assignment should you choose to accept it: Bill Steigerwald wrote, in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: " ... 'Snitch' shows in powerful detail the damage done to real people and society in general by a judicial system that rewards snitching and lying. Along the way it also provides a frightening indictment of the totalitarian lengths to which politicians, government prosecutors and drug police are willing to go in their all-out effort to win the war against illegal drugs. As one defense lawyer at the end of the 90-minute program sums up the argument, 'We're trading our paranoia to get rid of these drugs for our Constitutional rights, and we're making a terrible mistake in doing that.'" If you missed the PBS show, it is on-line as realvideo at: http://www.legalize-usa.org/TOCs/video7.htm and realaudio at: http://www.legalize-usa.org/TOCs/video7.htm plus there is a SNITCH website at: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/snitch/ Please send FRONTLINE a letter of acknowledgement, asking for reruns and encouraging further coverage of this topic. (Sample Letter Below) Thanks for your effort and support. WRITE A LETTER TODAY It's not what others do it's what YOU do *** PLEASE SEND US A COPY OF YOUR LETTER OR TELL US WHAT YOU DID (Letter, Phone, fax etc.) Please post a copy your letter or report your action to the MAPTalk list if you are subscribed, or by E-mailing a copy directly to MGreer@mapinc.org Your letter will then be forwarded to the list with so others can learn from your efforts and be motivated to follow suit This is VERY IMPORTANT as it is the only way we have of gauging our impact and effectiveness. *** CONTACT INFO Frontline@wgbh.org Mail: Frontline Producer WGBH 125 Western Avenue Boston, MA 02134 Send a copy of your letter, or write another one, to your local PBS station so that they also know you approve of the broadcast of the SNITCH show. You can find your local PBS station address at: http://www.pbs.org/voice/stations.html *** EXTRA CREDIT R Givens wrote: "We can get extra mileage out of the SNITCH show by writing the newspapers about the PBS special and voicing our opinions. Remember that an LTE doesn't have to be about something that appeared in the paper. Omissions and stories like this from other sources are fair play so lay it on. "We should be able to get some PUB LTEs out of this disgusting documentary on American injustice. "The newspapers are not giving this matter enough attention and we should give them hell about it." So, if you wish, give it a try! The contact addresses of many newspapers may be found at: http://www.mapinc.org/resource/email.htm and links to newspaper websites at: http://www.mapinc.org/media.htm *** ADDITIONAL INFO to help you in your letter writing efforts 3 Tips for Letter Writers http://www.mapinc.org/3tips.htm Letter Writers Style Guide http://www.mapinc.org/style.htm *** SAMPLE LETTER (SENT) Dear Frontline, Thank you for producing and broadcasting 'Snitch.' I hope you will rerun it, and do a follow-up on this and other atrocities of the so-called War on Drugs. As a retired Army officer, I find it very frightening that those freedoms for which Americans fought and died over two centuries are being thrown out in the name of this War. Apparently, our political leaders believe that the ends justify the means. Now I read, in the current issue of Public Health Reports, the Journal Of The US Public Health Service, of all places, an article that says "Drug laws and their massive, cruel imposition on millions of young men and women--not simply the use of drugs--have stigmatized and estranged our most disadvantaged minorities, creating a "new American Gulag" with its own archipelago of prisons, jails, courts, probation, parole, and, most recently, compulsory treatment as an alternative to incarceration, blurring the boundary between treatment and punishment." Have we become our cold war enemy? Let us hope that someday 'Snitch' will be recognized as one of the turning points that moved our country back on course. Richard Lake CW3, US Army, Retired *** Mark Greer Executive Director DrugSense PO Box 651 Porterville, CA 93258 (800) 266 5759 MGreer@mapinc.org http://www.mapinc.org http://www.drugsense.org Just DO It!
------------------------------------------------------------------- Pray For Peace Foundation News, December 1998-January 1999 (A periodic summary of drug policy and other news from the Pray for Peace Foundation, whose members are "committed to the legalization of sacred natural medicines for spiritual healing, for all people.") Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 14:02:05 +0000 From: Nori Muster (pfpfNews@steamboats.com) Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Pray For Peace Foundation To: email@example.com Subject: Dec. 98 - Jan. 99 Newsletter *** Pray For Peace Foundation News December 1998 - January 1999 *** Congratulations Hemp Hill Reservation incorporated in Tennessee to grow industrial hemp. Happy harvesting. -pf eds. *** Pot in the News Several columnists have come out in favor of marijuana, decriminalizing marijuana and bringing peace in the war against marijuana. On 1/5/99 Ann Landers said: Dear Sad Mother: I'm sad about your son's predicament. If the police added "intent to distribute" without real evidence, your son will need the help of a competent lawyer who can get those charges dismissed. I have long believed that the laws regarding marijuana are too harsh. Those who keep pot for their personal use should not be treated as criminals. Thirty years in prison makes no sense whatsoever. I'm with you. On 1/3/99 Robert Scheer (L.A. Times columnist) said: Still hung over from all that New Year's revelry and once again promising yourself to abstain? Maybe you should have tried pot instead of booze. Just kidding. This is not a marijuana commercial, although it would be good to counter those smug advertising council ads pimping the drug war. *** Help for Children in Drug War Times Judges, psychiatrists and government officials in California are taking steps to protect abused children in the state's care from improper and unmonitored doses of potent psychiatric medications. The officials are responding to an expose published in the L.A. Times, revealing rampant abuse. Keep kids off drugs the natural way. Ask a naturopath how organic food, biofeedback, exercise and herbal supplements can help. Also see: http://www.bhakti.com/pfpf/4kids.html *** Happy New Year Contest from Our Corner of the World L.A. Times columnist Steve Harvey challenges us: "No offense to Dick Clark, but, as an Angeleno, I'm tired of ushering in the new year by watching a 3-hour-old rerun of the big ball falling in New York's Times Square." The editorial staff wholeheartedly agrees with Mr. Harvey, and encourages all PF readers to participate in helping Harvey think of a new New Year's Eve tradition for Los Angeles. Suggestions so far: * King Kong jumps off the Hollywood sign (or Capitol Records building, or L.A. City Hall) at midnight (movie: Mighty Joey Young). * A 60-second freeway chase, starting at 11:59 P.M. If you get an idea, please send it to: Steve Harvey, Metro, L.A. Times, Times Mirror Square, L.A. 90053, fax: (213) 237-4712 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org so he can begin to lobby the L.A. Mayor's office to prepare for next Dec. 31. *** More Good News for Hollywood The violent crime rate reached its lowest level in 28 years. Also, beginning this month, Hollywood civic leaders will repair 1,500 sidewalk stars that have had tree root damage over the years. The Hollywood Chamber now allows fans to "adopt" the stars. The Walk of Fame attraction started in 1960 and now numbers 2,128 stars Along Hollywood and Vine. Twenty plaques are added each year. Call the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce for a prerecorded message about the Walk of Fame: (323) 469-8311. *** Excerpts from American Journalism Review on the TV pundit epidemic (Jan./Feb. 1999), article by Alicia C. Shepard : "When they go into the booking process, they look for polarizing," says Tim Graham, Media Research Center. "The Big Show" and another [MSNBC] nightly offering, "The White House in Crisis," focused on the Clinton/Lewinsky matter relentlessly night after night, when there were major developments and when there weren't. Viewers who encounter such fare are likely to get the impression that the "crisis" is much more serious than it actually is at that precise moment. "The shows are very conflict-oriented, and they perpetuate the conflict without ever trying to work through or resolve a conflict," says Jan Schaffer, executive director of the Pew Center for Civic Journalism. "When we frame everything as an argument, it alienates people." MSNBC, in particular, has boosted its ratings by striving to become the all-Monica, all-the-time network. To read the article, link to "White Noise," at: http://www.ajr.org *** Holidays Are Over Please call your two U.S. Senators (202) 224-3121 and tell them your wishes for the new year. Use the Pray For Peace Activist's Workshop for more links to your legislators and the media: http://www.bhakti.com/pfpf/workshop.html *** Affirmations for 1999: Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done . . . *** Pray For Peace: End the War on Drugs in 1999 *** PRAY FOR PEACE FOUNDATION est. 1995 http://www.bhakti.com/pfpf Pray For Peace Foundation was founded to spread awareness, education and devotion to the Great and Holy Mystery that is God. We accept all paths as true; all religions are but branches of the same tree. We promote interfaith dialogue and exchange programs to develop tolerance between religions. Pray For Peace Foundation is dedicated to nonviolence (vegetarian diet) and daily meditation. Pray For Peace members are committed to the legalization of sacred natural medicines for spiritual healing, for all people.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Anti-pot fungus poses eco hazard (Now magazine, in Canada, says the U.S. Congress passed a $690 million anti-drug package this week that included $23 million for a fungus purported to kill marijuana, poppy and coca plants. Unspecified scientists are criticizing the project, saying other plants may be susceptible to the bio-engineered fungus. For example, they note that an alkaloid similar to one in the coca plant is also present in tobacco and coffee plants.) From: Carey Ker (email@example.com) Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org To: email@example.com Subject: Canada: Anti-pot fungus poses eco hazard Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 11:19:28 -0500 (EST) Newshawk: Carey Ker Source: Now Magazine(Canada) Pubdate: Thursday, January 14, 1999 Page: 15 Website: http://www.now.com Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Author: ENZO Di MATTEO ENVIRONMENT Anti-pot fungus poses eco hazard The U.S. government is developing a fungus to kill pot, poppy and coca plants. Some scientists warn that it may pose an ecological threat to other legal cash crops, like tobacco and coffee. The $23-million plan, part of a $690-million anti-drug package passed by Congress this week, is to loose the fungus on drug hot spots around the world, including Colombia, Peru and Bolivia. But scientists say other plants may be susceptible to the bio-engineered fungus. They note that an alkaloid similar to one in the coca plant is also present in tobacco and coffee plants. "This project is the political equivalent of athlete's foot fungus," says Steve Dasbach, national director of the Libertarian party in Washington. "It's nasty, it's dangerous and it needs to be stopped before it spreads." But Shannon Gravitte, press secretary for Florida Republican Bill McCollum, a backer of the drug package, says eco concerns are premature. "There's nothing going ahead at this point," she says, and their preliminary research shows the fungus is safe. ENZO Di MATTEO
------------------------------------------------------------------- 900 In Trials To Test Claim That Cannabis Has Medical Benefits (The Daily Mail, in Britain, says the legalisation of cannabis moved a step closer yesterday as doctors announced details of the first medical trials for the herb. Over the next three years, 900 sufferers of multiple sclerosis and post-operative pain will be given regular doses of cannabis through an inhaler or as a pill. If the drug is shown to ease the volunteers' symptoms without causing side effects, doctors could be prescribing cannabis pills to some of Britain's 85,000 MS sufferers within five years.) Date: Thu, 14 Jan 1999 21:20:41 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: UK: 900 In Trials To Test Claim That Cannabis Has Medical Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: CLCIA Pubdate: 14 Jan 1999 Source: Daily Mail (UK) Copyright: 1999 Associated Newspapers Ltd Website: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/ Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: 12 Jan 1999 Author: David Derbyshire, Science Correspondent 900 IN TRIALS TO TEST CLAIM THAT CANNABIS HAS MEDICAL BENEFITS The legalisation of cannabis moved a step closer yesterday as doctors announced details of the first medical trials for the drug. Over the next three years, 900 sufferers of multiple sclerosis and post-operative pain will be given regular doses of cannabis through an inhaler or as a pill. If the drug is shown to ease the volunteers' symptoms without causing side effects, doctors could be prescribing cannabis pills to some of Britain's 85,000 MS sufferers within five years. The move to legalise cannabis for medical treatment was welcomed by patients, who claim thousands take the drug illegally to ease the symptoms of MS. One drug company - GW Pharmaceuticals - has already been granted Home Office permission to grow cannabis for medical purposes. Its first crop of 5000 plants was sown last August in a secret greenhouse in the south of England and is now ready for harvest. The company will eventually grow 20,000 plants at the site, which is being guarded round the clock. The plant - a member of the hemp family - contains chemicals which can numb pain, easing the aches and spasms associated with MS. Cannabis is also used by some epilepsy sufferers. The 8 foot-tall plants will be chopped off just above the stem, hung to dry and then ground up. For the tests, which could begin within a few months, the powder will be made into capsules, or given to patients using an inhaler. Professor Tony Moffat, chief scientist at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, believes the trials will prove cannabis has medical benefits. "Although trials into the therapeutic use of cannabis and cannabinoids - the active chemicals in cannabis - have taken place in the past, they have never been accepted by the World Health Organisation as proof," he said. He aid a sufficient number of patients would participate in the scientifically-based trials to determine cannabinoid effectiveness for the first time. Some of the volunteers - made up of 600 with MS and 400 suffering from post-operative pain - will take cannabis oil, while others will be given a placebo. Their health will be studied for up to two years by researchers led by experts at Imperial College, London. If the test results are accepted by the World Health Organisation, it would pave the way for the Government to reclassify cannabis, making it legal when prescribed by doctors but illegal for recreational use. A recent House of Lords Science and Technology Committee report backed the medical use of cannabis, a Class B drug. The British Medical Association has also supported calls for the drug to be put through clinical trials and made available on prescription. Writer Sue Arnold, 56, uses cannabis to relieve a hereditary eye condition that has left her almost completely blind. She said a pill version of the drug could help thousands. "For me it is beneficial," she told the BBC yesterday. "For MS sufferers it is beneficial, so why not if it does relieve pain and spasms? As soon as you take a joint they go and you feel better and you are guaranteed a good night's sleep." The Multiple Sclerosis Society which has called for clinical trials, welcomed yesterday's launch of their details. British doctors were allowed to prescribe cannabis until 1973, when it was removed from a list of prescription drugs that still includes heroin and morphine.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Weekly Action Report on Drug Policies, Year 5 No. 2 (A summary of European and international drug policy news, from CORA in Italy) Date: Tue, 19 Jan 1999 10:49:32 +0100 To: CORAFax EN (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: CORA Belgique (email@example.com) Subject: CORAFax #2 (EN) Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org ANTIPROHIBITIONIST OF THE ENTIRE WORLD .... Year 5 #2, Juanuary 14 1999 *** Weekly Action Report on Drug Policies Edited by the CORA - Radical Antiprohibitionist Coordination, federated to - TRP-Transnational Radical Party (NGO, consultive status, I) - The Global Coalition for Alternatives to the Drug War *** director: Vincenzo Donvito All rights reserved *** http://www.agora.stm.it/coranet mailto:email@example.com CORA NEWS *** ITALY - 1998-2000 NATIONAL HEALTH PLAN AND DRUG ADDICTION It has been published with a year's delay, and is full of good intentions that have not been followed yet by any concrete action, which is made impossible by the situation of pervasive illegality of the anti prohibitionist laws. *** ITALY/FRANCE - SAME HYPOCRICY IN ROME AND PARIS The Italian and French Governments do not intend to change their anti prohibitionist laws, although they speak of a pragmatic approach to the drug question. The only policies that promote information, responsibility and order are the Dutch and Swiss ones. *** ITALY - INAUGURATION OF THE JUDICIAL YEAR Las t year a change in style had been announced, but this year the new General State Attorney has complained about the fact that keeping drugs for personal use is not a crime anymore. The only way to stop crime related to drugs is to adopt policies that legalise them, and not to enact emergency laws or to suspend constitutional rights. NEWS FROM THE WORLD *** 000441 08/01/99 E.U. / FRANCE ADDICITION MISCELLANEOUS A special interministerial commission has proposed that alcohol and tobacco be considered on the same level as heavy drugs, while the use of light drugs should be depenalised and punished only with a fine. *** 000442 08/01/99 E.U. / FRANCE ADDICITION LIBERATION Bertrand Lebeau, director of the Parmentier methadone center, asks where the new policies on public health and drug addiction that the Prime Minister had publicised have disappeared. He says that time to enact these policies has not run out altogether. *** 000436 07/01/99 E.U. / NL ADDICTION FRANKFURTER A research by the University of Rotterdam shows that in Holland the number of habitual hashish consumers is of 323000 people (2,5% of the population), half of what it was thought to be until now. *** 000437 14/01/99 E.U. / ITALY ADDICTION L'ESPRESSO Buprenorfine is often used in France as a substitute for heroin. It can be prescribed by general phisicians and because of this the number of addicts that are turning to their family doctor has doubled. In Italy pharmaceutical companies don't seem to be interested in this market. *** 000432 09/01/99 E.U. / ITALY / MILAN CRIME CORRIERE DELLA SERA / IL GIORNALE In Milan the Albanese bosses control the drug market together with the local mafia. 74,5% of the Milanese people sees the growing crime as a direct consequence of drug traffic and prostitution, and 60% of them are afraid to go out at night. *** 000433 08/01/99 E.U. / GERMANY INITIATIVES FRANKFURTER / SUEDDEUTSCHE Z. The Health Minister, Andrea Fischer, says that the German Government will soon start a project for controlled distribution of heroin, modelled on the Swiss experience. *** 000434 09/01/99 EUROPE / SWITZERLAND INITIATIVES SUEDDEUTSCHE Z. Controlled distribution of heroin and other measures in favour of drug addicts certainly can save human lives. In 1998 there have been 209 deaths realated to drug consumption,31 less than in 1997. *** 000435 10/01/99 E.U. / FRANCE INITIATIVES LE MONDE In a press conference Daniel Cohn-Bendit, who will run for the Green party in the June European Elections, said:'If we want anything to change in our city districts, we must change the polcies on drugs'. *** 000438 07/01/99 E.U. / ITALY TRAFFIC IL GIORNALE / THE TIMES A lawyer has denounced the Cuban President, Fidel Castro, for international drug traffic. He says he will present the same charge in Italy, Great Britain and Belgium. The denounciation has also been signed by the daughter of a Cuban colonel who was executed for drug traffic in 1989. *** 000439 14/01/99 AMERICA / USA TRAFFIC L'ESPRESSO The marines of Camp Pendelton, on the border with Mexico, are involved in cocaine trafficking. 50 of them were arrested last year during an intervention by the DIA. A corporal was arrested for having introduced 14 tons of cocaine in the United States. *** 000443 16/01/99 AMERICA / COLUMBIA WAR ON DRUGS THE ECONOMIST The USA, by financing with 290 million $ this year various initiatives against drug traffic, are doing their part in the difficult peacemaking process between the guerrilla and the Columbian government. *** 000444 13/01/99 AMERICA / COLUMBIA WAR ON DRUGS HERALD TRIBUNE In Bolivia and Peru coca plantations are diminishing thanks to the collaboration of their governments. In Columbia coca fields are augmenting. The government negotiates peace with the guerrilla, which is allied with the narcos and reluctant to collaborate.The USA supports those policies, which don't make the plantation diminish, and the Columbian army, that has been accused of crimes against human rights. *** 000445 12/01/99 E.U. / GB / WAR ON DRUGS THE TIMES Andy Hayman has been appointed by Scotland Yard as Chief Coordinator in the fight against drugs. -------------------------------------------------------------------
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