cannabisnews.com: SF Mayor Gavin Newsom: War On Drugs Is A Failure





SF Mayor Gavin Newsom: War On Drugs Is A Failure
Posted by CN Staff on October 05, 2007 at 06:49:54 PT
By Hank Plante, Reporting
Source: CBS News
CBS 5 / KCBS  -- San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom proclaimed the nation's war on drugs a total failure and insisted the crime rate would go down if the government spent money on treatment as opposed to jailing people with drug problems."If you want to get serious, if you want to reduce crime by 70% in this country overnight, end this war on drugs," he told reporters at City Hall on Thursday. "You want to get serious, seriously serious about crime and violence end this war on drugs."
The mayor maintained local jails are overcrowded with people incarcerated for drug offenses, taking up room that could be used to hold more violent criminal offenders. He said violent criminals with lengthy felony records are being turned loose, too often. San Francisco Sheriff Mike Hennessey, who has run the county jail for 28 years, told CBS 5 that 60 to 75 percent of the 2,000 inmates currently held are there for drug crimes or have underlying substance abuse problems.He also agreed with Newsom."No, the war on drugs is not working. The war on drugs is not working because we are relying on law enforcement instead of on treatment," Hennessey said.In a ten-minute tirade about the drug war's failure, Newsom told reporters that most politicians - including those in his own party - just don't have the guts to admit the obvious."It's laughable that anyone could look at themselves with a straight face and say 'oh,we're really succeeding.' I mean it's comedy. And as I say, shame on my party, the democratic party, because they don't have the courage of their private thoughts, because we don't want to appear weak on this topic," Newsom said.The mayor said the 'politicizing' of the illegal drug use issue prevents a discussion about real solutions to the drug epidemic."End this war on drugs. Now, that is an attack ad by any politician, what I just said, they would be desperate to find that tape of what I just said," Newsom said.The mayor insisted, however, that he wasn't calling for the legalization of all drugs - just a recognition that the current approach isn't working."I'm not saying (legalization). I'm saying get real about it," he explained. "So what does that mean? Well, it means a lot of things. It means this war on drugs is an abject failure."Local substance abuse counselors welcomed Newsom's candor, while critics rejected it."I think the mayor probably has the right idea as far as turning the money away from the current approach, incarceration, and hopefully he's talking about turning the money toward more prevention programs," said Meredith Charpantier, a former drug counselor.But Gary Delagnes, who heads the San Francisco Police Officers Association, said ending the war on drugs wouldn't bring an end to crime."I don't think that you give in to a problem by just acquiesing. I think that there does have to be control and I don't think legalizing drugs is the answer," he said.Delagnes pointed to three murders occuring in San Francisco on Wednesday alone, which means the city has already surpassed last year's homicide total."When we see the homicides in San Francisco, I mean this all centers around drugs," Delagnes continued. "This is gangs and drug violence, this is money. It's all about money all the time."There have been 89 murders in San Francisco so far in 2007, up from 85 murders during all of 2006. Newshawk: PotpalSource: CBS News (US Web)Author: Hank Plante, ReportingPublished: October 4, 2007Copyright: 2007 CBS Broadcasting Inc.CannabisNews Justice Archiveshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/list/justice.shtml
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Comment #32 posted by afterburner on October 07, 2007 at 23:13:37 PT
Listen Up, Canada
"San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom proclaimed the nation's war on drugs a total failure and insisted the crime rate would go down if the government spent money on treatment as opposed to jailing people with drug problems."Canada: Editorial: Ottawa's New Drug Policy Wrong Way To Go, Globe and Mail, (03 Oct 2007) 
http://www.mapinc.org/newstcl/v07/n1149/a02.html?176
 CN BC: PM's Anti-Drug Plan Panned by Coalition, Daily Gleaner, (06 Oct 2007) 
http://www.mapinc.org/newstcl/v07/n1148/a05.html?176
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Comment #31 posted by FoM on October 07, 2007 at 18:39:59 PT
mykeyb420
He would be a great President in the future. I hope it will be Obama and Edwards or Obama and anyone but Clinton. I don't think Obama and Clinton could work well together because they both have strong leadership goals but I could be wrong.
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Comment #30 posted by mykeyb420 on October 07, 2007 at 18:05:03 PT
no to gov 
Govenor Newsom,,,I like the sound of that,,, but we( SF ) want him for another 4 years before anyone else,,,
President Newsom,,,oooh, I really like the sound of that,,,
let's see,,,he's 37 now which means he'll be in his early 50's when Hillary/Obama are out of office...
check out the movie Independence Day,,with will smith,,the guy who plays the president looks ALOT like gavin
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Comment #29 posted by FoM on October 07, 2007 at 10:25:15 PT
mykeyb420
He sure is a handsome fella!
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Comment #28 posted by whig on October 07, 2007 at 10:24:09 PT
mykeyb420
Hillary Clinton called him Governor Newsom, in a slip of the tongue.
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Comment #27 posted by mykeyb420 on October 07, 2007 at 08:53:18 PT
gavin
Now you all see why we love our mayor. the most level headed mayor in the USA. Anyone who does not like him,,dosent live in SF. Plus he is soooo good looking too.
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Comment #26 posted by afterburner on October 06, 2007 at 07:55:14 PT
News from Battlefront: Canadas 'New' Drug Strategy
CN BC: WV Riding Could Go To Pot, North Shore News, (03 Oct 2007) 
http://www.mapinc.org/newstcl/v07/n1142/a08.html?176CN QU: Med Pot's Slow Access?, Mirror, (04 Oct 2007) 
http://www.mapinc.org/newstcl/v07/n1142/a02.html?176CN BC: Editorial: Tories' 'New' Strategy to Fight Drugs Just Pours More Money In, Vancouver Sun, (05 Oct 2007) 
http://www.mapinc.org/newstcl/v07/n1141/a07.html?176Canada: Harper Vows Jail Time for Drug Dealers, Producers, Vancouver Sun, (05 Oct 2007) 
http://www.mapinc.org/newstcl/v07/n1140/a04.html?176CN BC: Column: Why a War on Drugs Just Won't Work, Victoria Times-Colonist, (05 Oct 2007) 
http://www.mapinc.org/newstcl/v07/n1140/a07.html?176Letters to editors would be greatly appreciated. "The pen is mightier than the sword."
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Comment #25 posted by nuevo mexican on October 05, 2007 at 18:58:41 PT
I agree with Impeachment, and Incarceration....
as soon as he's impeached, though arresting bush/cheney would not stop impeachment proceedings, I don't believe.Thanks for posting the Neil Young article, he is always spot on, and generally sees through the BS.Larry King has Kid Rock on, and he's another big bushie buffoon, and he's not doing himself any favors, since he is an expletive deleted. Him and Ted Nugent.Eric Clapton is going to be a guest next week, to make up this weeks poor choice.Have a great weekend!The original version of 'Cat People' is on TCM, if you have it!P.S.
The smell of Impeachment is in the air, even Nancy P. knows' it could happen to her!
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Comment #24 posted by mayan on October 05, 2007 at 17:36:07 PT
Nuevo Mexican
Introducing articles of impeachment against Bush/Cheney would be a sure way to prevent another inside job. If they did another one after they were put on the hot seat everyone would suspect them first! By not exposing the 9/11 inside job the dems are themselves complicit in the cover-up and are putting all of our lives at risk.
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Comment #23 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 13:11:05 PT
nuevo mexican 
Neil's comment about Al Gore.Thursday October 4, 2007Excerpt: Unlike our 2002 meeting, when he was struggling to articulate his thoughts on 9/11, Young is now only too eager to address current events. Even so, his thoughts are, much like his music, often impulsive. Young has never been accused of behaving like a textbook liberal. In the late 60s, he wrote Ohio, an outraged response to the deaths of four students at the hands of the National Guard at Kent State University. It stands as one of the greatest protest songs to emerge from the era. By the 80s, in stark contrast, Young briefly emerged as a supporter of then president Ronald Reagan. Today, he is equally contrary."This will be seen as the dark ages of vision where it was right in front of us," he says. "Why are all these people upset? What did we do? There has to be a reason. You have to go back through history, and see what we've done to these little countries how we've manhandled them into doing different things in the name of doing good. We didn't realise that our way of life is not the only way of life."He sits and thinks for a while. Back in the 60s, Young marched in protest against the war in Vietnam. He tells me that the liberal idealism of the era was a success. Then, abruptly, his thoughts turn to Bill Clinton. "In this country we had a bad group of events starting with Bill Clinton and leading up to [George W] Bush. Clinton was a catalyst for a lot of this stuff because he played out on a moral stage a very bad scenario. He lied directly to the American people about something that has to do with core family values. He's not a bad person; he made a mistake. But in lying he made a much worse mistake. And although it was very human and people forgive him for doing that, he gave the other side, the conservative side, the aggressive side, a huge opening. If it hadn't been for what he did, Al Gore would have been president. We would have had a president who understands the environment. We would have had a smart man in there."Complete Article: http://music.guardian.co.uk/rock/story/0,,2183160,00.html
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Comment #22 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 12:48:45 PT
nuevo mexican 
You make me laugh. I like the choices you mentioned. I like Al Gore but I don't think his heart is in running at this time and I respect that and the work he is doing is very important. Senator Obama would not say the word GUARANTEE because that is a trick word. No one can guarantee anything particularly since 09 and a new administration being sworn in is really a long way off and Bush is still pulling the strings and anything can happen that could make it worse then it is in Iraq or maybe even Iran. I think the flag issue was weird. Neil had a broken Peace Sign in the Freedom of Speech Tour. Stick told me flying the flag upside down meant distress when he was in Nam. To me not wearing the flag pin as a symbol is ok since the flag seems to represent war and aggression these days.
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Comment #21 posted by nuevo mexican on October 05, 2007 at 12:34:03 PT
While we're in San Fran, Beach Impeach.....
Is tomorrow!Great news from Mayor Newsom, For C-Newsers in Cali, 1000-1500 people are expected, and they are auctioning off Nancy Pelosi's pre-paid Helicopter ride to view the gathering, since she has more important matters to attend to.Dennis Kucinich should be on that ride, or Barbara Boxer at the least!By the way, Nancy's opponent for her seat in the Senate, Cindy Sheehan will be attending, and this should help garner the attention this event deserves.Beach Impeach 4 is Wheelchair Accessible	BEACH IMPEACH 4, Oct. 7 at 11am at the Berkeley Marina
1500 impeachers and our very special guest, Cindy Sheehan, 
will spell out for Congress what exactly IS on the table.HELICOPTER SEAT for BEACH IMPEACH 4 on ebay
Want to ride over the event in one of the helicopters?
World Canít Wait is auctioning one helicopter seat on ebay. Hereís the link: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200157884385www.beachimpeach.comWhat are the Dems waiting for FOM?For bush to attack Iran so they can say, 'we told you he'd make us look bad if we opposed him, so no matter what we do, if we act to impeach him, he will do something worse than attacking Iraq....he will attack the U.S. again, ala 9/11.This must be what they are thinking, so they're okay with Iran, as they ALL knew bush was behind 9/11, and it frightened them so, they've never gotten over it.They KNOW he's a madman, and they are very afraid.This creates an equal and opposite reaction, thus....Obama is standing up to the machine, good on him, and Edwards and Kucinich, even Bill Richardson, are all still quite worthy of our attention, though after seeing Al Gore and his live presentation of 'An Inconvenient Truth' Wednesday night, I believe he is the right man for the job.Other options include:
An Obama/Edwards, Edwards/Obama ticket with Dennis as Leader of the Senate, third in line for Pres, and Bill R, running Dennis' Dept of Peace, and remember the Wives! The Wives!Think about it, Ms. Obama, Ms. Kucinich, Ms. Edwards?Wow, I love them all!They will be the WOMEN in office, not the man of woe that would be Hillary, the repug choice for the next Reptilian slea-der. Hillary is the Democrats disaster waiting to happen, plus, she a closet case apparently, like Larry Craig.I would choose an out of the closet gay for Pres, though Barney Frank is NOT my favorite. Rosie O'donnell, or someone with more 'clout'.How about that cackle, getting used to it yet?
Anyone like it.
John Stewart nailed it the other day.Michael Moore stated yesterday, it's not about Impeaching anymore, he is now a known a war criminal. And left it at that.So when do we arrest bush, we can impeach him later, maybe they should add 'arrest bush' to the demo?Or maybe local C-Newsers can make that sign when the Impeachers are ready for their next wording!Helen Thomas says it all though, not to be a nattering na-bob of negativity, but she's right on the money!
I also can't believe Obama said we could be in Iraq til 2013
though taking his flag off his lapel shows great courage in the face of the Matt Druding slime media.The Democrats Who Enable Bushhttp://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/10/05/4352/
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Comment #20 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 12:05:38 PT
Legalize Pot, Help the Uninsured
http://www.independent.com/news/2007/oct/05/legalize-pot-help-uninsured/
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Comment #19 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 11:08:45 PT
Max Flowers 
My sister was a Deputy Sheriff for about 20 years and she said she wasn't allowed to comment about laws. When she retired she also stayed out of any police discussions of laws. She votes for change but won't get involved with the police anymore.
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Comment #18 posted by Max Flowers on October 05, 2007 at 10:47:40 PT
FoM about #15
I know what you are saying, I'm always astonished to realize how vocal police are about what are essentially political areas outside of what should be their limited purview. There should be laws to hold police to their limited roles. They are way too engaged in that stuff. Yes, a lot of cops would quit because they would object to having to be so neutral, but that would hopefully then filter out the ranks so that you end up with only people that are willing to stay so neutral. Just like you can't and don't have judges who parade all over in front of news cameras spouting personal opinions about this legal issue and that law (and not that they're not corrupt in many other ways), police officers in my opinion should have to, by law, remain objective and neutral and QUIET. 
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Comment #17 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 10:42:59 PT
Max Flowers 
You said: I also think it's possible to have an end to the war on drugs without total legalization.I agree.
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Comment #16 posted by Max Flowers on October 05, 2007 at 10:40:06 PT
sam (re: post #2) / musings on alternatives to WOD
I think you should give the guy credit for saying what he's saying. Very few public figures have the balls to say "end the war on drugs", so I think we have to support those who do even if they don't lay out the alternative plan.I also think it's possible to have an end to the war on drugs without total legalization. Consider these ideas (which I did not come up with of course, but am thinking about right now): A massive change would be effected simply by *de-funding* the WOD... that would be an end for most intents and purposes. If 95% of the government money for it stopped flowing, it would be an end to a lot of the really bad stuff that happens. Decriminalization is the other thing that would make massive changes in a somewhat low-key way. Changing criminal penalties to counseling and other solutions at the end-user level. Having to sit through county or state assigned counseling would be its own form of punishment. At least people wouldn't go straight to jail and there might even be some positive results for some people. Give people lots of chances before any possibility of incarceration.For large-scale distributors (big dealers/kingpins), I don't know what you do... the practical side of me thinks maybe for them you have to leave all the criminal penalties in place, or they would just take over totally. That's where ideas of demand reduction seem to come in; if for example we could legalize cannabis and simultaneously deglamorize hard drugs and return them to their lowly, shameful status of the 1940s and 1950s, demand would fall and maybe that would cause supply to crash. There are no easy answers, obviously. But I would definitely like to see an end to the horrific waste of public money thrown at a "war" that, just like the "war" in Iraq, has an impossible and psychotically fantastical objective. Think how many universities and school programs and development projects and clinics etc etc that all the billions thrown down the toilet over the last 20 years toward this ephemeral imaginary goal could have paid for and created!
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Comment #15 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 09:44:51 PT
Police
I thought police were not to even comment on laws but are suppose to enforce them and no more. They aren't to be policy makers is what I mean.
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Comment #14 posted by Hope on October 05, 2007 at 09:44:15 PT
Never, because of my particular faith,
would I call someone a fool, an idiot, raca, or stupid.So, I'd like to say... no, I'd like to shout it, "It's the PROHIBITION, brilliant minds! It's the PROHIBITION!"
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Comment #13 posted by Hope on October 05, 2007 at 09:40:03 PT
He actually said it, himself.
"When we see the homicides in San Francisco, I mean this all centers around drugs," Delagnes continued. "This is gangs and drug violence, this is money. It's all about money all the time."
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Comment #12 posted by Hope on October 05, 2007 at 09:37:19 PT
Delagnes...It's the PROHIBITION of drugs!
"But Gary Delagnes, who heads the San Francisco Police Officers Association, said ending the war on drugs wouldn't bring an end to crime."I don't think that you give in to a problem by just acquiesing. I think that there does have to be control and I don't think legalizing drugs is the answer," he said.Delagnes pointed to three murders occuring in San Francisco on Wednesday alone, which means the city has already surpassed last year's homicide total."When we see the homicides in San Francisco, I mean this all centers around drugs," Delagnes continued. "This is gangs and drug violence, this is money. It's all about money all the time."There have been 89 murders in San Francisco so far in 2007, up from 85 murders during all of 2006. "Does the man have no remembrance or knowledge of what the prohibition of alcohol did for gangs and alcohol and violence? If the man doesn't have a clue... why not? Is he not even vaguely aware of what his own words are actually saying?
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Comment #11 posted by OverwhelmSam on October 05, 2007 at 09:07:49 PT
Newsome's Awesome
He's not saying legalization, but that's what he means. He first has to get past the American hater killer mentality (law enforcement) and he's doing that by saying, "The drug war is ineffective, what are we going to do about it?"That Sheriff is a total dumb ass. I don't see how guys like that get into office. "Legalization will not stop crime." Of course legalization of drugs will not stop all crime, but it will stop black markets, dealers and gangs from making money. Hello, knock knock, is any body in there. So the drug war is worth it, eh Sheriff? Why don't you think about it while I smoke this bowl, click. LOL
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 09:02:06 PT
Koppel: Breaking Point
Oct 07, 9:00 pm(120 minutes)  Koppel: Breaking Point  
TV-14 (L) Ted Koppel reveals the extraordinarily volatile world of Solana State Prison with an inside view of the overcrowding crisis pushing California's prison system to the Breaking Point. http://dsc.discovery.com/convergence/koppel/koppel.htmlhttp://dsc.discovery.com/tv-schedules/special.html?paid=1.14394.25540.0.0
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 08:54:45 PT
Truth
That's very interesting.
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Comment #8 posted by Truth on October 05, 2007 at 08:53:28 PT
Hillary..
Hillary, just the other day, publicly called him Governor Newsom. A slip of the tounge or was it?
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Comment #7 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 08:46:16 PT
Thanks Mayor Newsom
I just read a great review in my CA e-mail. It was appreciated.
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 08:38:37 PT
Had Enough
That's what I think too. It will be the United States of North America. Will that make Mexico and Canada states 51 and 52 I wonder?
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Comment #5 posted by Had Enough on October 05, 2007 at 08:20:44 PT
Re: #4
Part of the plan???http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=north+american+union
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Comment #4 posted by Mike on October 05, 2007 at 08:14:53 PT
Meanwhile, north of the border..
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/05/world/americas/05canada.html?ei=5090&en=ccc405a1ea87e46b&ex=1349236800&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss&pagewanted=print
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Comment #3 posted by goneposthole on October 05, 2007 at 08:07:20 PT
Wilhelm Tell Analogy
He wouldn't bow to the Austrian Empire. Gessler's hat was the last straw. He story is legendary. He shot an arrow threw an apple perched on top of his son's head. He had a second arrow for the Austrian Gessler, had he missed and harmed his son.Fast forward to the 21st century when the student in Ohio turned his back on the Preznit. A modern day Wilhelm Tell.To thy own self be true. It begins with lighting up a joint of cannabis.The unexamined government is not worth serving.Don't fall for the empire shtik. It can't be afforded. Especially the kind of empire that oppresses its own citizens.http://www.tell.ch/t_story.htm
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Comment #2 posted by sam adams on October 05, 2007 at 07:54:41 PT
Parade of Liars
You want to end the War on Drugs, but you're "not saying legalization"? Then what the hell are you saying? Not much.
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on October 05, 2007 at 07:26:37 PT
RL TV - Special Report - Video
Viewpoint investigates the relationship between seniors living with chronic pain and their choice to use medical marijuana to alleviate their constant discomfort.We hear from voices on all sides of this issue - seniors who smoke marijuana to ease their pain; a medical marijuana dispensary in California; the White House office of drug control policy; and a prominent member of Congress - all of whom agree that when it comes to the issue of medical marijuana, there are no easy answers. URL: http://www.rl.tv/Default.aspx?tabid=598
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