Sunday, April 15, 2012

LEAPing at opportunity - or not...

As you have seen in the news the past couple of weeks, this weekend is the sixth "Summit of the Americas" conference in Colombia (where some of our military and Secret Service guys seem to have stepped in a bit of a pile....).  There, among other topics, the nearly universal War On Drugs was to be a major topic at the behest of several currently-in-office Latin American leaders. All of them believe that the prohibition is far too costly in terms of expense and - particularly in those countries, just as in Mexico -violence.  In the last few years more than 60,000 people have been killed in drug war related violence as drug cartels battle over black market prices.

Many of you know of my involvement with Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP - or for the past seven years, as well as my work on the medical marijuana front in Colorado, Montana and South Dakota.  So you can imagine that I might be slightly disturbed when OUR country's leaders continue to push this failed policy.

Fellow LEAP speaker and Executive Board member Jim Gierach was able to state the case well with  a COVER article in the Bogota Free Planet -

Dear Editor --
Pres. Obama is dead wrong about the legalization, regulation and control of dangerous drugs. The WAR ON DRUGS (drug prohibition) is the policy that is killing Mexicans and other Latin Americans by the tens of thousands, killing teens in Kenosha, WI (heroin ODs), and killing kids in Chicago, L.A., New York City, across America, and around the world in gang turf-wars and cartel competition over the control of black-market drug distribution and sales.
Prohibition is the drug policy of AL CAPONE, the United Nations, and the drug cartels of the world. To oppose drug legalization and the control of dangerous drugs is to side with and support drug cartels and street gangs.
Historically, politicians (Democrats and Republicans alike) have sold the public PROHIBITION SNAKE-OIL in exchange for votes and re-election. Barack Obama is up for re-election. But the David Axelrod’s, Karl Rove’s, Barack Obama’s and Mitt Romney’s of the world had better wake up. (Note: Ending torture, concluding wars, killing bin Laden, saving the US auto industry, taking a stab at healthcare reform, reviewing Bush tax cuts for the richest of the rich as the middle class shrinks are all positive initiatives, but…) The people of the world are on to them.
The people of the world know that the war on drugs is PUBLIC ENEMY NO. 1. The people of the world overwhelmingly judge the drug war a dismal failure.
Sadly, lethally, the drug policy of the U.S. has become the drug policy of the United Nations, encapsulated in three U.N. prohibitionist treaties just reaffirmed on motion and resolution of the U.S. at the 55th Session of the U.N. Commission on Narcotic Drugs held in Vienna in March. That killer policy cements the member nations of the world into a suicidal pact, moaning and bellowing in a “single, unified voice,” chanting “zero tolerance” and “prohibition forever” even if it kills us, and that’s just what it’s doing.
We, U.S. citizens and responsible citizens of the world, must join the courageous leaders of Latin America who for the first time exhibit the wisdom, courage and leadership to call out the KILLER WAR ON DRUGS and dare to call for a transition from world drug prohibition to world drug decriminalization, legalization, taxation, and the control of dangerous drugs.
James E. Gierach
James E. Gierach is a former Chicago drug prosecutor, board member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition ( and municipal attorney.
Last month, having heard that the sitting presidents of 12 Latin American countries are saying "Enough!" (Bolivia told the UN to, in essence, "Get lost" about the drug war treaty), VP Joe Biden scurried down to Mexico to meet with candidates for President in their upcoming election.  The purpose:To make certain they would stay with the current prohibition policy.  And, of course, to offer them more US taxpayer money to help them WIN this drug war (apparently, thousands of lives being lost is WINNING).
Now, in an interview with Univision, the President of the U.S. says he doesn't think legalizing drugs (with a policy of regulation and control) is the right way to go:
So, apparently, after the loss of thousands of lives, 40 years of failure, over $1TRILLION of expenses, Latin American leaders begging for a change, hundreds of embarrassing drug raids gone bad (with unarmed people being shot, kids being terrorized, dogs being killed in households, police officers dying over a few ounces of MJ) and numerous other signs of total failure - our leaders can't see any other way to deal with the drug problem.
As I wrote in my previous blog - WTF (What TOTAL Foolishness)!!
So, here's what I ask of you - help us continue to make this conversation grow among Americans (and people of other countries burdened by this idiocy).  Make the "leaders" of our country understand that pushing a failed, destructive policy that has only served to make the problem far worse is NOT the way to garner votes for re-election.  Visit us (, JOIN us.
You can see the pressure is rapidly rising - the Feds have pulled out all the stops, doing things they have not done before against MMJ operations and all things related and AGAINST the voted will of citizens in state after state (and in violation of the 10th amendment!).  Why?  Can they see the end coming?  Can they see the awakening of the people they are supposed to be serving?
Help us effect change of a bad, damaging policy.  Hasn't it gone on long enough?

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