cannabisnews.com: The Clinton Drug War Legacy 





The Clinton Drug War Legacy 
Posted by FoM on January 15, 2001 at 16:09:01 PT
By Peter Gorman and Bill Weinberg
Source: High Times Magazine
The Gentlest Ride Into Hell Americans Have Ever Experienced Recent history judges a President on two things: the state of the economy and foreign affairs. During his two terms in office President Bill Clinton presided over a booming stock market and managed to avoid any unseemly military quagmires. Thus, despite dozens of personal scandals and serious political-and perhaps criminal-problems, he'll probably be remembered as a great, if flawed, leader. But not to the millions who've fallen prey to the Clinton Drug War machine, the most well-oiled policing apparatus America has ever known.
Join us now for a retrospective tour of shame through the Clinton Drug War legacy.The Beginning:The Drug War legacy of Presidents Ronald Reagan and George Bush included property forfeiture, expanded police powers and a zero- tolerance policy, along with an expanded prison system to accommodate all those who bucked the law. President Bill Clinton inherited these. But when he first took office, many in the drug-policy- reform movement were optimistic that the man demonized by his right-wing opponents as an ex-hippie draft dodger would reverse this legacy. Instead, doomed by his politically disastrous "I did not inhale" campaign line, he has cravenly allowed federal, state and local law enforcement to expand all the tools left to him. His record might be worse than those of Reagan or Bush.In the Clinton years, police overreach in the name of the Drug War shredded much of what remained of the Bill of Rights. And those most frequently caught in its web were not the "drug kingpins" legislators claimed to be going after. Mothers, fathers, small-time dealers, medical-marijuana users and even children were caught in a criminal- justice system so overgrown no one is immune to the new powers Johnny Law uses to protect us from ourselves. And while much of the horror heaped on the American public has occurred at the state and local levels, the tenor of the times begins at the top-which places the responsibility squarely at Bill Clinton's feet.Prison Expansion:When Bill Clinton took office in January 1993, the violent crack epidemic of the late 1980s was already subsiding. Nonetheless, the galloping expansion of police powers and the prison system didn't skip a beat, and law enforcement shifted to a new emphasis on marijuana. When Clinton entered office, the prison population-local, state and federal-was about 1.3 million. As he leaves, that number has ballooned to over 2 million, the highest rate of incarceration-as well as the highest total number behind bars-in a democratic state in the history of the world.Nearly 60% of federal and 25% of state prisoners are incarcerated for nonviolent drug offenses. Hundreds of new prisons have been built to accommodate them, giving rise to a prison-industrial complex that defies imagination. New drug courts and judges have been added to state and federal rosters; 100,000 new police, with their attendant paraphernalia-guns, cruisers, station houses and adjunct non- uniformed personnel-have been hired to search out small-time drug users; tens of thousands of jail and prison guards have been added to state and federal payrolls. There has not been such a boon to public construction since the Works Progress Administration of the 1930s. Our military and Drug Enforcement Administration forces overseas have exponentially expanded as well, particularly in Latin America. All of this has been an enormous help to booming Clinton's economy. The strategy was brilliantly devised: Increase incarceration by three- quarters of a million, add a couple of million workers to create and maintain the prison infrastructure, and voila! Lower unemployment and a healthier economy. And to help pay for it all, the Feds and states used a tool that became available only a few years before Clinton's inauguration: forfeiture.Forfeiture Abuses:The forfeiture of illegally gotten goods is a tradition that dates back to British maritime law. But it wasn't until the passage of the 1984 Omnibus Crime Bill that US police agencies involved in the forfeiture of property were allowed to sell the assets they seized and keep the money. That provision of the 1984 Crime Bill, bolstered in 1986, has led to police abuses unheard of in the history of the United States. Tens of thousands of people have had their property seized for the tiniest drug-law infractions. On the highways, police use "drug courier profiles" to stop and search motorists and confiscate their vehicles if any drugs are found. At airports, travelers' cash is seized when it tests positive for traces of cocaine-despite studies showing that most of the cash in the country is tainted with cocaine. Local and federal officers routinely keep gardening shops under surveillance, checking customer records against utility bills to create probable cause to search residences for indoor marijuana grow sites-and frequently forfeiting those homes where illegal gardens are found.Marylander Pamela Snow had her business and home confiscated when one of her kids received a United Parcel Service package that contained marijuana. Part of the official "justification" for the forfeiture was the Grateful Dead poster in her son's bedroom-supposed evidence that the house was a "narcotics-related" meeting place. Snow suspects that a police agent may have sent the pot package. Then there is Marsha Simmons, a black woman in Washington, DC who repeatedly called police to have them remove her crack-selling grandchildren from in front of her house-only to have the police respond by seizing her home because her grandchildren had sold crack on the property.Corruption has been an inevitable result. Some communities, whose police agencies garnered big forfeiture bucks, have lowered those agencies' budgets, and forced them to make up the difference by seizing more property. Nicholas Bissell, a New Jersey prosecutor, got so addicted to the power and money afforded by forfeiture that he falsely set up citizens just to get their property. When caught and found guilty in 1996, Bissell fled New Jersey and killed himself in a Las Vegas hotel room.Oops! Wrong Address: A family in Ohio is at home singing carols on Christmas Eve when masked men in black wielding machine guns kick down the door and wrestle Dad to the ground: The agents got two digits of the address mixed up. An elderly Latino man in Texas is shot to death in his sleep when police raid his house; the informant who provided the address lied.These are not isolated incidents. Goaded on by the promise of big forfeitures to beef up police budgets, antidrug forces from the inner city to the redneck heartland are knocking down doors first and asking questions later. Often they rely on paid informants who lie to get a share of the loot. Sometimes they just read the address wrong on the warrant. Innocent residents pay with their Fourth Amendment rights, the sanctity of their homes-and sometimes their lives.Accelyne Williams, a Methodist minister from Boston, died of a heart attack in 1994 while wrestling with members of a SWAT team who had raided the wrong apartment. In Brooklyn, Anna and Jerry Roman and their three children were terrorized by a drug squad acting on an informant's bad tip. No-knock raids became so common in New York City that the police created a special unit just to replace the doors of city residents who had been terrorized by the drug squads. The Sherman family of Renton, WA, were among those who at least managed to wrest some justice from the system when they won a $100,000 settlement from the South King County Narcotics Task Force. The Shermans were watching TV when the knock came. Their 15-year-old son answered and eight armed men burst in and screamed at him to get on the floor. The father, Ed Sherman, was handcuffed naked and denied clothes as officers questioned him about drugs. The task force was acting on the tip of an informant who the next day admitted he had lied about the Shermans' involvement in hashish smuggling. Ed Sherman told the press he hoped the settlement "will ensure others don't go through what we did." No such luck. Just a few months later, Clayton Root, 61, of Big Bay, MI, sustained cuts and a broken hand bone in a scuffle with ski- masked agents of the Upper Peninsula Substance Enforcement Team (UPSET) who barged into his home in a midnight raid without identifying themselves. "I was fighting for my life," said Root, who draws a disability pension from a back injury and recently had heart surgery. "I thought it was teenagers who had come to kill us. I saw the outline of a gun and pushed my wife behind me." The UPSET search warrant did not have an address, only a description of the property provided by an informant. When police realized they had the wrong place, they took Root to the hospital.On the afternoon of Sept. 29, 1999, 13 SWAT team members stormed the upstairs apartment at 3738 High St. in Denver, looking for drugs. They were executing a no-knock raid, one of about 200 approved by the city police that year. Resident Ismael Mena, 45, worked the night shift at a Coca-Cola plant and slept during the day. After breaking open the front door, the SWAT team found the door to Mena's room latched, and kicked it in. Police say they found him armed with a .22 revolver, standing on his bed. Officers claim they screamed "Police!" and "Drop the gun!" repeatedly. Mena started to put the gun down, asking, "Policia?" But police say when they then moved to disarm him, he again raised the gun. Officers opened fire. Mena, a father of nine, was hit by eight bullets and killed instantly. No drugs were found. The next day, SWAT team officers learned they had raided the wrong residence-they should have gone next door, to 3742 High St. Officer Joseph Bini, who obtained the warrant, is facing a felony charge of first-degree perjury for allegedly fabricating evidence. The Justice for Mena Committee insists that police planted Mena's gun to cover themselves for the killing. Denver Police Chief Tom Sanchez, who left for a Hawaii police conference the day after the killing, has been forced to step down.Police as Hit Men:One of the peculiarities in the Clinton Drug War was the development of special drug task forces that combine the manpower of federal, state and local agencies-but frequently seem to operate without the oversight of any particular agency. These paramilitary police squads have racked up hundreds of assaults on innocent people and killed several alleged low-level dealers.When a Kentucky drug task force came to uproot his plants in August 1993, pot-grower and Vietnam vet Gary Shepherd told them, "You will have to kill me first," took out his rifle and sat down on his front porch. That evening he was shot dead in front of his infant son. Despite the fact that Shepherd never fired a shot and his family was pleading with authorities for negotiations, state police sharpshooters appeared from the brush without warning and opened fire when he refused to drop his rifle.In 1997, John Hirko, a 21-year-old unarmed Pennsylvania man with no prior offenses, was shot to death in his house by a squad of masked police dressed in ninja-style uniforms. They didn't even knock before tossing a smoke grenade through a window, setting fire to the house. Hirko, suspected of dealing small amounts of marijuana and cocaine, was found face down on his stairway, shot in the back while fleeing the fire. Police in these instances were found legally justified in committing the homicides because of the "no-knock exception" to the Fourth Amendment in cases involving the execution of search warrants on drug suspects. And the killing continues. In 1999, Amadou Diallo was killed by four white New York City plainclothes officers in a hail of 41 bullets-justified because the police team was in a "high profile drug area" and Diallo's black wallet "looked like a gun." The four were later acquitted of all charges. Last March, a similar NYPD antidrug squad shot and killed Patrick Dorismond, a building watchman, after he rejected their repeated requests to buy marijuana from him. Dorismond, standing in front of a pub with a friend, was approached by the cops, who were trying to tally one more bust for the day. They asked where they could cop some weed. He said he didn't know. They asked again and he repeated that he didn't know. When they got aggressive he said he bought his weed in Brooklyn. Instead of leaving they made animal noises at him, and he reportedly pushed one of them, whereupon another member of the squad shot him in the chest, killing him. No marijuana was found, but the next day Mayor Rudolph Giuliani had Dorismond's sealed juvenile record-which included a bust for smoking pot in public years earlier-illegally released and claimed it justified the shooting. And these killings are just the tip of the iceberg of innocent blood spilled in the name of the War on Drugs. In Houston in July 1998, Mexican immigrant Pedro Oregon, 23, reportedly locked himself in a bedroom after officers burst through his front door. The cops broke down the bedroom door and sprayed the room with gunfire. Thirty-three bullets later, Oregon lay dead on the floor, shot a dozen times, including nine times in the back. One officer, David Barrera, fired 24 of the shots. An investigation revealed the officers had no warrant to enter the premises, and police found no drugs in the apartment. Children Caught in the Middle:The unsung victims in the War on Drugs are the children used as weapons against their parents by police and prosecuting agencies-something those of us who grew up in the Cold War were told only the Commies did. Few people realize how frequently children are used as leverage to secure arrests and admissions of guilt-often where there is none-from parents terrified their kids will be taken away from them if they don't cooperate with the law.In 1993 in Vermont, teenagers Jessica and Alice Manning's parents were caught in a forfeiture sting and sent to jail. The girls were subsequently encouraged to turn against their parents in a drug sting so that the family property, in their names, could be forfeited to their state-appointed guardians.In Georgia, 8-year-old Darrin Davis told a teacher after an antidrug lecture that there was white powder in his parents' bedroom. They were arrested and incarcerated.The Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) program has produced hundreds of arrests using evidence initially provided by children. While the program purports to educate children about the dangers of drugs, the police officers who teach it frequently put a black box near the front of the classroom and encourage kids to put the names and addresses of anyone they know who uses drugs into it. That information is often then used to secure warrants against those people. Medical-Marijuana Intransigence:When Clinton was first elected, medical-marijuana advocates thought that he would at least be sympathetic. He did, after all, appoint Dr. Joycelyn Elders as Surgeon General, and she was outspoken in favor of debating medical marijuana's potential. Unfortunately, the Clinton camp quickly saw her as a problematic political lightning rod-she was also in favor of sex education, AIDS education and the rights of high-schoolers to acquire condoms-and got rid of her before a serious nationwide medical-marijuana debate could even begin. Subsequently, the Clinton years saw a grass-roots upsurge demanding the right of the seriously ill to medicate themselves with marijuana. California, Arizona, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Hawaii, Maine, Nevada and the District of Columbia all passed referendums or legislation to legalize the medicinal use of cannabis, but the Clinton Administration refuses to recognize these laws as legitimate. Moreover, it has instructed the Justice Department to go after medicinal growers and distributors in those states. It has told doctors that their licenses to prescribe other drugs could be revoked if they give patients the documentation necessary to acquire medical marijuana, and said that patients using medical marijuana in federally funded housing will be evicted. These were not empty threats. A suit by California's doctors challenging the prescription-license threat is winding its way through the courts. And B.E. Smith, a Northern California grower who put his state's medical-marijuana law to the test by openly cultivating on a friend's mountain homestead-with all the necessary paperwork indicating the pot was for patients-is now serving a two-year sentence in federal prison, denied bail while his appeal is being considered.Perhaps the most famous case regarding medical marijuana during Clinton's years involved Peter McWilliams and Todd McCormick. McWilliams, a best-selling author who suffered from both AIDS and cancer, and McCormick, a cancer patient, were arrested in 1998 for cultivating marijuana in a Bel Air, CA, mansion. The marijuana was intended to supply buyers' cooperatives that serve patients in California. As part of an agreement reached with federal prosecutors, they pleaded guilty to conspiracy to manufacture and distribute marijuana. McCormick agreed to a five-year sentence, with the right to appeal on the grounds that he'd been denied a medical-necessity defense. McWilliams waived his right to appeal in exchange for avoiding a mandatory 10-year minimum. Barred from using marijuana to control his nausea, he choked on his vomit and died of a heart attack last June, while awaiting sentencing.Even before this grass-roots ground-swell challenged the federal policy, the Clinton years saw outlandishly cruel persecution of the ill. Among the thousands prosecuted for use of medical marijuana is Jimmy Montgomery, an Oklahoma paraplegic with no criminal record. In 1995, he received a life sentence for possession of less than one and a half ounces of marijuana-a sentence later commuted to life at home when it was discovered the state couldn't afford to treat his condition in prison. Another Oklahoman with no prior arrests, arthritis sufferer Will Foster, received 93 years in 1997 for a small medical- marijuana garden he had in his basement. (His term has since been reduced to 20 years.) And Tom Brown of Arkansas, busted by the DEA in 1995, is serving a 10-year sentence for growing marijuana for medical use.Needle-Exchange Funding:The inability of needle-using drug addicts to acquire clean needles legally has long been identified as a key factor in the spread of AIDS, hepatitis and a host of other debilitating diseases. Junkies sharing used needles are microbe distributors. If they have clean needles, they won't spread those microbes. Dozens of major studies, including several paid for by the federal government during Clinton's years, have confirmed that needle exchange not only works, but does not increase drug use. Still, the Clinton Administration, at the behest of Drug Czar Barry McCaffrey, refused to allow federal funding for needle-exchange programs, saying that (in McCaffrey's words) this "would send a message to our nation's children that doing drugs is not wrong." That intransigence in the face of science has caused thousands of drug addicts and their lovers to die needlessly.Official Corruption:There have always been cases of individual police officers being corrupt. But the big money generated by the black-market drug trade-either legally through forfeiture, or illegally through protection rackets, blackmail and theft of drug profits-has turned several local law-enforcement agencies into ruthless criminal organizations. The lure of easy cash can corrupt individual officers, who then corrupt associates, until entire precincts, and sometimes whole departments, are involved in a web of criminal activity.The New York Police Department's scandalous "Dirty Thirty" precinct in upper Manhattan involved dozens of officers in stealing confiscated drug money, shaking down witnesses and performing warrantless paramilitary-style raids. At the height of the scandal, in January 1994, officers Patrick Brosnan and James Crowe pumped 22 bullets into the backs of Anthony Rosario and Hilton Vega while they lay face down on an apartment floor.New York is not alone: In Philadelphia, city narcotics officers have planted drugs on innocent people to justify warrantless searches, and robbed many of their victims. An ongoing investigation has resulted in 160 Philadelphia drug convictions being overturned-including that of a Baptist minister held in a maximum-security prison for three years-and the imprisonment of six narcotics officers. Several other officers are awaiting trial, and an additional 1,800 convictions are under review. Most recently, the Los Angeles Police Department faced revelations of institutionalized corruption and brutality from a former officer testifying in exchange for a reduced sentence for stealing eight pounds of cocaine from evidence-storage facilities.Officer Rafael A. Perez, formerly of Rampart Division's elite antigang unit, Community Resources Against Street Hoodlums (CRASH), cooperated with investigators as part of a plea bargain in which he received a five-year prison term. Perez described how he and fellow CRASH officers beat suspects in interrogations and framed "gang members," winning convictions against them for crimes they did not commit. Authorities are now looking into hundreds of cases suspected of being tainted.Perez said that after Javier Francisco Ovando was shot in the head and paralyzed for life in 1996, Perez and his partner, Officer Nino Durden, framed him on charges of threatening the officers with a gun. Ovando had been unarmed. Following Perez's new testimony, Ovando was released after serving two and a half years of a 23-year sentence. As of early 2000, a dozen officers had been suspended or fired in the scandal.Police Stings:The traditional use of police stings has been greatly expanded during the 30-year War on Drugs, and never more than during Clinton's tenure. Where once undercover police simply pretended to offer their services to criminals in order to catch them in illegal acts, it has become routine for police in the Drug War to encourage illegal activity in order to trap otherwise innocent people.In some cases police have gone so far as to operate garden centers aimed at catching marijuana-growers. In one particularly onerous case, Scott Jones, the owner of a garden center in Pennsylvania, was threatened with 70 years for cultivating marijuana, but allowed to remain free if he would help incarcerate other growers. Over the next several years, Jones not only encouraged gardeners to grow pot, but actually provided plants and set up indoor gardens in return for a share of the profits, all with police approval. Before it was exposed by HIGH TIMES in 1997, the sting produced more than 10 arrests and the forfeiture of several homes.Goodbye, Posse Comitatus:The Posse Comitatus Act prohibits the use of the military in domestic law enforcement, but once again our nation's War on Drugs has perverted both the spirit and the letter of the law, permitting the military to operate in several regions of the country. In the lush woodlands of Northern California, epicenter of outdoor marijuana cultivation in America, multijurisdictional teams of county, state and federal officers survey the mountains and forests for pot plants every fall as part of a coordinated effort called CAMP-the Campaign Against Marijuana Planting, which uses US military helicopters and other equipment illegally. In Hawaii, the Pentagon-backed eradication effort against pot-growing has been waged for more than 10 years. Pesticide-spraying choppers patrol the jungle in what authorities openly view as a test program for eventual export to the mainland. On the Big Island, Air Force RF-4C Phantom reconnaissance jets survey the ground for crops-followed by police choppers with specially designed pesticide spray-guns. The spray poisons groundwater supplies and edible crops, and has caused hundreds of physical ailments and several deaths.And on the Mexican border, for the past several years, quietly and with little media coverage, elite Pentagon troops have been moved into position along the Rio Grande and the southern deserts of Arizona and California to back up Border Patrol and state police in antidrug operations. In 1996 a camouflaged Marine fatally shot an 18-year-old Mexican-American goat herder named Ezequiel Hernandez near Big Bend, Texas, bringing the program before the public eye-and throwing it into question before Congress. Epilogue:Even as elements at every level of government-from local precincts and sheriff's departments to the Pentagon and Central Intelligence Agency-are ensconced in the drug trade, the media have successfully demonized drug users to the extent that dissent against the frightening wave of constitutional violations and police overreach has become almost verboten. And while he leaves office with the economy strong, Clinton's economic gains have at least partly been fueled by a vicious war against small-time drug users and dealers. He also leaves setting the stage for another Vietnam in Colombia that may well spill over into Venezuela, Ecuador and Brazil-all in the name of fighting drugs. But the millions of man-years lost to prison, the families and communities ravaged, the billions spent to wipe out drugs at their point of origin-all have been futile at ending, or even lowering, drug use. Teen use of drugs is substantially higher than it was when he entered office. Heroin and cocaine are cheaper and purer than they've been since they were outlawed in 1914. And Clinton has overseen it all with a smile.NewsHawk: DdCSource: High Times (US) Author: Peter Gorman and Bill WeinbergPublished: February 2001Address: 235 Park Ave. S., 5th Floor, New York, NY 10003 Copyright: 2001 Trans-High Corporation Contact: letters hightimes.com Website http://www.hightimes.com/ CannabisNews Articles - Clintonhttp://cannabisnews.com/thcgi/search.pl?K=Clinton
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Comment #8 posted by dddd on January 16, 2001 at 01:00:53 PT
I'm Glad
I had no idea that there are alot of Mormons in Idaho....I'm glad I was mistaken,and glad to learn something new.It is also probably wise of you not to piss off any Mormons...I wouldn't want to get on a Mormons bad side.I wonder if any Mormons smoke marijuana?..............dddd
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Comment #7 posted by Dan B on January 15, 2001 at 23:03:46 PT:
Actually, no. I Really Meant Idaho
I know Utah is the centerpoint for Latter Day Saints, but according to some people I know who grew up in that region (neither Mormons nor prejudiced against Mormons), there is a rather large constituency of Mormons living in the southeast part of Idaho. Of course, that claim may have been exaggerated somewhat, and I may be way off-base. At any rate, the part about the southern part of Idaho being relatively conservative seems accurate to me (I'm pretty familiar with that part of the country, having grown up in Western Montana). I appreciate both your kind tone and your humor, dddd. And I admit that my evidence is quite flimsy, so I very likely could be way off base. Thanks for pointing it out--I really do need to be more careful with my "facts."Dan B
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Comment #6 posted by dddd on January 15, 2001 at 21:34:04 PT
mormons,,Idaho?
Dan,,,Have you been burnin' the candle at both ends? Idaho has alot of millionaires,and other stuff,but I dont think it's known for Mormons.Perhaps you were thinking Utah...?The fact that you were sensitive,and aware about offending anyone is good enough for me.Or maybe I'm mistaken,and I missed the Boise Tabernacle Choir.Dont let it slow ya down......You're the BEST...................dddd
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Comment #5 posted by Dan B on January 15, 2001 at 20:43:18 PT:
Not To Dis Any Mormons Out There...
If I offended any people of the Mormon faith, I apologize. I made the comment about Idaho because it is well known that the Mormon faith is deeply conservative, and do not mean to unfairly stereotype those who happen to be both Mormon and pro-drug-reform.Dan B
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Comment #4 posted by Dan B on January 15, 2001 at 20:39:53 PT:
South Dakota: Another Brick Falls From the Wall
South Dakota is following a trend that will continue to grow as long as we remain vocal and attentive. The overwhelming majority of the people in this country favor what the drug warriors would call "radical reform" of the marijuana and hemp laws, and South Dakota has just become the latest evidence of this fact. I suspect that the people of Montana, and North Dakota (and Idaho to a lesser extent*) would also support medical marijuana and industrial hemp, as people in that part of the country tend to be keenly aware of their constitutional rights, and they tend to notice when those rights are violated (think "militia"). Word is spreading, and people are finally listening to us. We are, in fact, winning this war. Many have been despairing over the next drug czar, wondering if we are in for even more draconian laws and enforcement. I believe that we are in for just that. The current war on drugs will escalate, we will continue to see a rise in the prison population, and penalties for drug offenses will likely become even more harsh. Many fear that this new wave of even more draconian measures may halt the reforms we have been fighting for. But I believe there is an upside. As the carnage becomes worse, the American people will finally recognize what those of us in the reform movement have been seeing all along; namely, the drug war is a deadly war against all people who do not belong to the upper socioeconomic classes (i.e., all non-whites and what the bigoted drug warriors would call "poor white trash"), and specifically against the rights entrusted to Americans via the U. S. Constitution. At that point, either one of the two major parties will become pro-reform, or a third pro-drug-reform party will displace one or both of the two major parties. Whichever party latches on to drug policy reform first will win the next election, and we will finally have true government reform (at least in the area of drugs).The antis will become pariahs, many Americans believing them to be war criminals (and rightly so), and more importantly, the political prisoners will finally be released. A new set of policies aimed not at "zero-tolerance," but at harm reduction will take effect. No longer will Americans look over their shoulders in fear as they light up a joint, pipe, or bong. No more will drug addicts fear criminal prosecution when discussing their drug-related health problems with their doctors. No longer will Americans fear no-knock searches in the middle of the night, nor police shootings of innocents--including children, nor those random warrantless searches more commonly known as "drug tests." Students will once again be allowed to obtain federal student aid, even with drug-related convictions. Millions of people at one time or another placed behind bars for drug-war felonies will be restored the right to vote.The drug war will crumble, folks. I have extreme faith that it will. I would not devote the time and energy I devote to this fight if I did not believe it could be won. Many of you feel the same, at least deep down.But there is a key to all of this. In order to overcome the war on drugs, we must be willing to speak out, even in the darkest of times. We must exercise our 1st Amendment rights; we must let our government know that it is killing America and its neighbors in the name of a war that cannot be won. During those times when we are attacked, disregarded, or tossed aside completely, we must remember those who have been martyred in the name of the war on drugs (see above). At those times, we must remind the drug warriors of their crimes, and we must remind the sheeple that the drug warriors are wolves waiting to devour them. As long as we continue to tell the truth, we cannot lose.We can win. We are winning. We will win.Dan B*I say "Idaho to a lesser extent" because the Mormon influence in at least the southern half of the state is enormous there, thus people in that region tend to be more supportive of the drug war.
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Comment #3 posted by Not To Worry on January 15, 2001 at 20:25:17 PT
To Frank
 >>The Drug War is the undoing of the American Democracy and the beginning of the police state. Don't lose hope. There was a man called McCarthy, in our not too distant past, who also wanted to breach every aspect of our Constitution, for the good of society. He ended up being an example of what not to do. I think the same can be said for the Clinton Administration. He is a hypocrite, and a liar.  In a recent Rolling Stones interview, he said that he thought small amounts of pot were decriminalized. The man is suffering from dementia. 
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Comment #2 posted by CongressmanSuet on January 15, 2001 at 20:04:55 PT:
Hey, what do you expect?...
  In his own, terrified mind, the cop represents the LAW, you are showing disrepect for the LAW, than you are dis-respecting him, peversely personally [theres a mouth full!] Most cops have fragile egos to begin with [ taken from a study on cops who have fragile egos done in Atlanta, Ga. in 1995. Hey, if they can do it...]. Think about the kind of person who wants to be a cop, especially in the capacity mentioned here. They are playing war, AND getting paid for it. Just thought I'd mention it. Just got back from Dresden, Ontario, Im thinking about moving my stable there for the fall. cops were polite and NOT menacing, seems like they smile more....
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Comment #1 posted by Frank on January 15, 2001 at 17:45:03 PT
The Disgusting Truth of The Drug War
I would call this article the disgusting truth. How long as Americans can we let this injustice go on? Every American needs to stand up against this onslaught of corruption and police brutality. When I was a boy a policeman was your friend that you could ask for help Ė no longer true. Most people I talk to at work and schools say they donít trust the police and they will kill you if they get the chance or stay away from them, they are too dangerous. The Drug War is the undoing of the American Democracy and the beginning of the police state.
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