DEA Raids Take WoD's To Higher Level of Absurdity

DEA Raids Take WoD's To Higher Level of Absurdity
Posted by CN Staff on February 26, 2003 at 11:34:43 PT
Emerald Editorial Board
Source: Oregon Daily Emerald
On Monday, Attorney General John Ashcroft and the Drug Enforcement Agency drove the war on drugs headlong down the nonsensical highway, leaving puffs of tyrannical smoke behind them. Across the country, federal agents served indictments against a new, incredibly dangerous group: Glass blowers and distributors. The danger, of course, is to any pretension of Ashcroft's sanity. Among those raided in the operation, sardonically named "Operation Pipe Dreams," were a number of local merchants, chief among them Higher Source, a store on 13th Avenue. 
These raids were spurred by Ashcroft's Monday morning reinterpretation of federal law, wherein he determined that water pipes are "illegal drug paraphernalia." Water pipes can be used to smoke marijuana, so to Ashcroft, that's all they are used for. Which is of course, untrue. One can smoke flavored tobaccos through a bong, like a glass artisan's hookah. Actually, many locations that sell (sold?) water pipes include information about the benefits of using them for tobacco (it reduces tar and particulate matter, which is likely a reason some people use them to smoke marijuana). Ashcroft will have to wait for court decisions to know if his frightening reasoning will hold. Federal law is not nearly as clear as the attorney general that just because an object can be used to consume illegal drugs, the item itself is illegal. Federal law is also not clear that he gets to decide this all by himself. Of course, to make his case, Ashcroft relied on silly propaganda about families and the Internet. Kids can go on the Internet and buy pipes! Families are being violated! Run for the hills! Remarkably, Ashcroft's virtual concern for children's safety doesn't prioritize sites selling prescription drugs illegally, or child porn sites, or anything else illegal. Instead, he valiantly closes down a successful, taxpaying business providing jobs to Oregonians. Go figure. Speaking of the economic impact of Monday's action, will someone tell us why the government is wasting money on this? Aren't there real security threats to worry about, schools to fund, jobs to create and an ever-expanding national debt to pay off? Perhaps the worst part of this cartoonishly surreal turn of events is how completely impotent Ashcroft's action is. Getting rid of expensive art glass isn't going to stop anyone from doing drugs. (Focusing on harm reduction, education or rehabilitation might have an effect, but just try telling that to this administration.) Finally, we were concerned that the raids missed some demonic drug paraphernalia. We humbly offer a memo to remedy the situation. To: Atty. Gen. J. Ashcroft RE: Overlooked drug conveyance systems Dear Ash-inator, We know it wasn't intentional, but a large amount of illegal drug paraphernalia was missed Monday. As a favor, we have compiled a list of items regularly used for ingesting drugs (or so we've been told) and ask that you indict the distributors as soon as possible. Obvious paraphernalia: Lighters (especially with telltale burns on them), matches, rolling papers, soda cans, mirrors, razor blades, straws, empty pen tubes, apples (really, any hard fruit can be a pipe), aluminum foil, toilet paper tubes, scented dryer sheets (a residence hall staple), paper clips (used to clean pipes), fish tanks (makes a really cool bong, bro), any kind of spoon (you're not overlooking heroin, are you, Ashcroft?) and finally, when in a pinch in the woods -- hollowed-out logs. Complete Title: DEA Raids Take War on Drugs to Higher Level of Absurdity Source: Oregon Daily Emerald (OR)Published: Wednesday, February 26, 2003Copyright: 2003 Oregon Daily EmeraldContact: ode oregon.uoregon.eduWebsite: Articles:Pipe Makers Free On Own Recognizance Opens New Front in Decades Old Conflict Shops Remain Open After Taking Hit
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Comment #2 posted by billos on February 26, 2003 at 16:39:11 PT
The latest scam by the feds
I hope Aslinger is burning in Hell, as he should be. I hope he saves seats for Walters and Ashcroft.
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Comment #1 posted by delariand on February 26, 2003 at 11:45:18 PT
mmm... scathing truth...
That was refreshing to read. I hope this is a widely circulated newspaper, I don't recognize the title.
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