Lumping Pot In With Hard Drugs Ludicrous 

Lumping Pot In With Hard Drugs Ludicrous 
Posted by CN Staff on September 20, 2004 at 18:20:59 PT
By Geoff Olson 
Source: Vancouver Courier 
Shortly before the hydrogen-bomb-to-swat-a-fly police action descended on Da Kine Smoke and Beverage Shop last week, I met with several of my degenerate dope-smoking friends outside the Commercial Drive business. A sign inside requested all media and law enforcement to present themselves immediately to staff. I just stood there with my hands in my pockets, watching my friends join a crowd three deep-Vancouverites of all ages and ethnicity, who were signing forms at the front desk and eyeing menus offering melt-your-face-off varieties of B.C. weed.
Coincidentally, the Thursday raid took place at six o'clock, just in time for the evening news. And goodness me, TV helicopters had arrived in mere minutes to record this heavy-handed nonsense for posterity. Sometimes the universe comes together in an amazing way, dude. Not many Vancouverites seemed particularly exercised about Da Kine. Not Mayor Larry Campbell (at least not at first) and not the residents of Commercial Drive, some of whom were glad to see that street dealers had evaporated along that stretch of the Drive (although technically, Da Kine's staff were acting as dealers themselves). I'll bet there were even a few police out there who thought the exercise a farce. Ask any cop on the beat who he'd rather deal with: a bunch of lubricated yobs spilling out of a Granville Street bar at 4 a.m., or a few characters with bemused expressions exiting a neighbourhood head shop in a skunky cumulus of B.C.'s best. Vancouver neither welcomes nor wants an American-style war on drugs, especially with law enforcement resources drawn away from major crimes in the city. So what's going on with cops looking the other way for the four months since Da Kine opened, and the made-for-TV raid last week? Thursday's raid followed comments on the front page of that day's Vancouver Sun from Solicitor General Rich Coleman, linking the human wasteland on Vancouver's East Side to the sale of marijuana. This is the very same Coleman who suggested last January that through some unexplained Rube Goldberg process, B.C. bud buys guns for Afghan terrorists. I suspect Coleman's been getting a contact high from U.S. law enforcement agencies. For decades the DEA and the CIA have been running around the globe like Dr. Seuss's Thing One and Thing Two, ensuring draconian drug laws are in place from Panama to Pakistan, while enabling_ oh, never mind. Don't want to get off track and sound all conspiratorial again. In any case, American writer Robert Anton Wilson nails it when he talks about "war on some drugs." The U.S. government likes to cite the very real dangers of crack cocaine in its propaganda, but according to Wilson it actually spends most of its anti-drug budget fighting the relatively harmless and often medicinal marijuana. Drugs that are officially endorsed in Western culture-sugar, caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, tranquilizers, and antidepressants-feed what writer Terrence McKenna called the Dominator style of personality. Writing of McKenna's thesis, Wilson says the first three "keep all of us 'wired' enough to maintain the competitive, mildly sociopath personal ego necessary to survive in such a society and to perpetuate the values of that domination/submission system." The others, the booze and tranks, "allow us the occasional numbing and escape without which we would all probably crack up and crumble under the stress." However, a few of the drugs that aren't officially sanctioned, and subject to judicial taboos -psychedelics and marijuana-are incompatible with Dominator values and break down ego defenses. Psychedelics I won't argue for, and I'm not much of a cheerleader for recreational drug use, dope included. But to conflate marijuana with dangerous, addictive drugs like cocaine, methamphetamines, and heroin is only conceivable to a rigid, authoritarian mindset that rejects distinctions. An American mindset perhaps? U.S. officials have expressed their displeasure with Vancouver's efforts to forge an ambiguous path between the legalization and criminalization of drugs, and its harm reduction efforts on Vancouver's East Side. Perhaps the leaky law enforcement circus along Commercial Drive last week was a bit of theatre for Washington's benefit. In any case, when it comes to drug raids with high production values, it seems to me the chain of command doesn't always run through the mayor's office. The clear and present danger of human stupidity is always with us, but I'm hopeful reason will prevail. Weed isn't going to go away. Demand will always find a supply, and in B.C.'s future, it's better that legally sanctioned businesses service it than Hells Angels. Skunkweed is in air-Coleman and those whispering in his ear need to wake up and smell the New World Odour. Source: Vancouver Courier (CN BC)Author: Geoff Olson Published: Monday, September 20, 2004Copyright: 2004 Vancouver CourierContact: editor vancourier.comWebsite: Articles & Web Site:Cannabis News Canadian Links Serious About Drug-Law Reform Café Serves Up Pot and Controversy By Reefer Madness Raid Cafe That Sold Pot, Arrest Six People 
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Comment #2 posted by CorvallisEric on September 21, 2004 at 21:44:01 PT
Good new report by Richard Cowan
Da Kine and Vancouver:
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on September 20, 2004 at 20:09:12 PT
Friendly Reminder: Tomorrow on Montel Williams 
MARIJUANA: ILLEGAL DRUG OR MEDICAL TREATMENT? Tuesday, September 2, 2004 Today Montel will ask some tough questions about a hot political topic that is sweeping the nation. Medicinal marijuana has been approved by 9 states in this country and is currently being considered for legislation by 6 others. Yet the federal government still has power to negate the decisions passed by state legislatures and often targets both producers and users of medicinal marijuana in this country.One main question Montel will pose is that in spite of the federal government's attacks on the use of medicinal marijuana, it has been producing and delivering it's own medicinal marijuana for the past 20 years to a select number of patients throughout the country. We'll speak to one of those patients today. We'll also hear from former political representatives as well as activists who are in support of medicinal marijuana who will discuss the many facets of this issue.For more information log onto National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Law -- and the Drug Policy Alliance -- Angel: Mother of 2 who suffers from many different illnesses including seizures, inoperable brain tumor and wasting syndrome that she treats with medicinal marijuana http://www.angeljustice.orgDebbie & Larayne: Mother and grandmother of a boy with severe mental disorders who say that medicinal marijuana was the only thing that helped him live a life of normalcy. They wrote a book about his turmoil entitled, Jeffery's Journey.Irvin: One of 7 patients living in this country who has been receiving medicinal marijuana grown and regulated by the federal government for the past 20 yearsDonald Abrams, MD: Professor of clinical medicine at the University of California who was commissioned by the federal government to study marijuana for medicinal useRob Kampia: Executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project, which is an organization devoted to removing the criminal penalties for marijuana use -- http://www.mpp.orgAndrea Barthwell, MD: Former White House Office of National Drug Control Policy Deputy Director For Demand Reduction (ONDCP) who will discuss why the federal government still maintains that medicinal marijuana should be illegal -- http://www.whitehousedrugpolicy.govRoger Curtiss: Addiction counselor and director of alcohol and drug services of Anaconda/Deer Lodge, an outpatient treatment facility in Montana, who is against the legalization of marijuanaDon Murphy: Republican politician who supports the legalization of medicinal marijuanaLink To Show: Marijuana: Illegal Drug or Medical Treatment: Williams Tosses Gov Pot Potato: Williams Pushes Pot -- for Medical Relief: Montel Williams on Medical Marijuana: 
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