Articles Posted in Marijuana

As a cannabis legalization advocate I often email my pols and ask them to consider supporting various common sense reform measures. One recent email to Joe Barton sought support for a measure to end the federal prosecution of state sanctioned medical marijuana patients. Being as the Republican party is, or was, the party of state’s right, local control, and limited government, I was sure that Joe Barton would gladly support this common sense measure. Or maybe not.

Here’s Mr. Barton in his own words.

Dear Mr. Guest:

Everyone is presumed innocent even cops accused of smuggling weed. But ask yourself this, where do drug dealers get the money to bribe law enforcement? Why would a cop risk his career and freedom to help them? The answer- pot prohibition profit$.

I’m amazed at how many Texans believe the negative externalities of prohibition (corruption, inter alia) are somehow caused by the drugs, or the people selling them.

When we choose to make pot illegal, we choose the corruption of our police officers. Think about it. Drug cartels have a billion dollar monopoly on the Texas cannabis market. What’s easier than thinking up schemes to avoid getting caught and sending mules out who could get caught and lose their precious cargo?

Apparently Plano PD didn’t get the memo that 69% of Texans want some form of legalized marijuana. Otherwise, they wouldn’t waste their time with meaningless “look I found a joint!” busts.

The latest victim of our inane cannabis war is Chace Crawford. Allegedly, Chace is some sort of TV star (Gossip Girl?) who was hanging out in Plano at Ringo’s Pub when the fuzz found an “unlit joint”. I feel safer.

Remember opportunity costs? Violent crime in Plano is up over 50% from 2009. IWhat do you want Plano PD working on? Keeping Ringo’s Pub free of unlit joints? Or solving and preventing real crime (the kind with victims)?

I got a not guilty today on a marijuana bench trial. In large part this was due to the work of the citizen accused who did not waive his rights on the side of the road.

Remember, if the police ask you about anything illegal; drugs, guns, drinking and driving, murder, steroids, illegal poker rooms- ask for a lawyer.

If the police ask you to search your car- always say no and ask for a lawyer.

I’ll be the first to admit that news site comments are not the highest form of debate. However, they can be a useful gauge of how some members of the public feel on an issue. So how do the conservative readers of the TT feel about cannabis prohibition?

Here is a recent news story from Terrell, Texas courtesy of the Terrell Tribune.

Marijuana growing operation discovered off Lawson Road

Today is April 20th, the annual day of marijuana celebration around the country. To the hundreds of thousands of Texas cannabis consumers, know that as a member of the NORML legal committee I am working tirelessly to a) defend you if you get caught and b) reform our state’s hopelessly inane and morally repugnant marijuana laws (until b happens, try really hard not to get caught).

I’ve said this before but it bears repeating. As a former prosecutor/defense lawyer I have seen first how we destroy people by putting them into the criminal “justice” system for possessing a plant. The effects are most devastating to our nation’s young adults who end with criminal records that often last a lifetime.

Many DA’s offices, realizing how idiotic our state’s cannabis laws are, now offer pre trial diversion (or memo agreement) programs to help these defendants avoid a lifelong conviction. On the end of the rationality and deceny spectrum Williamson county uses their CPS goons to kidnap the children of cannabis advocates for teaching their children “not to trust the government”.

Drug possession cases tend to be factually simple scenarios. The State must prove that you had care, custody and control of X, and that X is illegal. We’ll save possession for another day. Today let talk about proving X is marijuana.

In most cases drug DPS labs provide analyze the putative contraband and attempt to positively identify whatever it is the police sent them (you’d be shocked how often drugs aren’t actually drugs). Not so much with marijuana.

By far, the most untested alleged controlled substance in Texas is weed. In an effort to convict the maximum number of otherwise law abiding citizens for the least cost many marijuana cases are brought without the benefit of drug testing.

Wow. It only took nine months but Barack Obama actually moved to limit federal power and increase State’s rights. When Texas finally passes our MM laws (I’m guessing around 2109 after the other 49 states legalize), then our fellow Texans MM patients will not have to live in fear of federal, or state prosecution.

The most bizarre response to this common sense move is from Bryan Fischer at GOP.com.. Mr. Fischer argues that it’s unconstitutional for the President NOT to order prosecution MM patients who comply with State law?

You know what America needs, more people in jail on federal drug charges. Why limit the tyranny of cannabis prohibition to Americans? Let’s spread Nixon’s WOD all over the continent and import Canadians for incarceration! Hope and Change!

Our latest political prisoner in the war on weed is Marc Emery. Marc is a marijuana activist/cannabis seed distributor in Canada. Marc sells marijuana seeds and the Canadian government happily taxes the profits. Marc is the founder of the British Columbia Marijuana Party and a leader in the movement towards cannabis sanity in the Great White North. Marc was recently arrested in Canada, and is awating deportation to America to face a 5 year sentence on federal drug charges.

Marc is being prosecuted for sending cannabis seeds through the US mail. A google search will show you that there are a few dozen operations offering a similar service. Consensual crime enforcement is nothing if not arbitrary and capricious. When millions are breaking the law the government can pick and choose whom to prosecute. While Marc was arrested for conspiracy to distribute his real crime was being an advocate for cannabis reform. Nothing pisses of the DEA mutawas like political dissent.

Just booked my trip to the NORML legal seminar in Key West. I’ve been on the NORML legal committee ever since I opened my private practice. I’d like to encourage any lawyer who is ashamed of cannabis prohibition to join the NLC.

Besides the justness of the cause being an NLC member usually pays for itself. Cannabis consumers/producers and medical marijuana patients appreciate an attorney who won’t judge them, and recognizes that these defendants are America’s political prisoners in the War on Drugs. For far less than you would pay an SEO scam company you can join the proud freedom fighters on the NLC.

This years conference is at the Pier House in Key West. I’ve never been to Key West and I look forward to exploring the island. Do you need some CLE hours and a vacation? Meet me in Key West. You do not have to be a NORML member to attend (though you do get a discount on registration).

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