Wednesday, October 26, 2011

"We Are Not Winning" - Former Deputy Chief Stephen Downing's Open Letter to California Police

The one bright light came from the people of California when they took the first step toward regulation. They passed Prop 215, the medical marijuana law, in 1996. And after 15 years of regulated sales to those under doctors' supervision, we find the sky has not fallen and society has not suffered. In fact, not only has cannabis been more fully researched as a medicine, but crime has decreased in the areas that have allowed medical marijuana dispensaries, legal job opportunities have increased dramatically and tax dollars have gone into our treasuries.

This experience of the advantages of regulation of cannabis sales in California, though not perfect, has mirrored the experience in Holland, where drug policy experts have concluded that closing down safe, regulated, supervised points of marijuana sales would shift to the streets and that young people would become dependent on the criminal underworld for the purchase of drugs.

And yet, regardless of the successes, on October 6, 2011 U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy delivered Obama's declaration of war against the sovereignty of the people of California when she declared on his behalf that: “Under United States law, a dispensary's operations involving sales and distribution of marijuana are illegal and subject to criminal prosecution and civil enforcement actions. Real and personal property involved in such operations are subject to seizure by and forfeiture to the United States...regardless of the purported purpose of the dispensary.”

Obama's weapons had already been fired. The IRS launched a devastating attack on tax-paying dispensaries by denying standard business expense deductions. The Department of Treasury has brow beaten banks into closing accounts of medical marijuana collectives. The ATF has warned firearms dealers not to sell firearms to medical marijuana users. The DEA has blocked a nine-year-old petition to reschedule marijuana for medical use, ignoring extensive scientific evidence of its medical efficacy. NIDA has blocked proposed research on medical marijuana to treat post-traumatic stress disorder for our veterans and - - in order to once again invade our communities with mass arrests, prosecutions and jailing of our citizens - - they have resorted to their tried and true strategy of buying you off - - this time with $72 million designed to divert 192 of your peace officers to drug warrior duty, once again, in order to carry out their assault on the sovereignty of the people of the State of California.

1 comment:

  1. Stephen Downing's open letter is at: