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Every Minute Someone Gets Arrested for Marijuana 
Posted by CN Staff on September 28, 2015 at 12:08:10 PT
By Christopher Ingraham
Source: Washington Post
USA -- The nation's law enforcement agencies are still arresting people for marijuana possession at near record-high rates, according to the latest national data released today by the FBI. In 2014, at least 620,000 people were arrested for simple pot possession -- that's 1,700 people per day, or more than 1 per minute. And that number is an undercount, because a handful of states either don't report arrest numbers to the FBI, or do so only on a limited basis.Nationwide, more than 1 in 20 arrests were for simple marijuana possession. Twenty years ago, near the dawn of the drug war, fewer than 2 percent of arrests were for pot possession. But that rate rose steadily throughout the 1990s and 2000s, even as those years saw a shift toward less-restrictive marijuana laws at the state level.
2014 saw the first year of fully legal recreational marijuana markets in Washington state and Colorado. But even as marijuana arrests plunged in those states, they crept upward at the national level -- suggesting that some jurisdictions are ramping up their marijuana enforcement efforts even as a majority of the public embraces the notion of legal weed."It's unacceptable that police still put this many people in handcuffs for something that a growing majority of Americans think should be legal," said Tom Angell of the Marijuana Majority, a pro-legalization group, in a statement. "Thereís just no good reason that so much police time and taxpayer money is spent punishing people for marijuana when so many murders, rapes and robberies go unsolved." The FBI's figures show that over half of the nation's violent crimes, like murder, rape and assault, went unsolved in 2014.Marijuana arrests can be costly for states and for the people arrested. The American Civil Liberties Union estimates that the typical marijuana arrest, excluding any costs of adjudication or detainment, costs about $750. At 620,000 arrests, that means that states spent nearly half a billion dollars in 2014 just to arrest people for marijuana possession.ďThese numbers refute the myth that nobody actually gets arrested for using marijuana," Mason Tvert of the Marijuana Policy Project, a pro-legalization group, said in a statement. "Itís hard to imagine why more people were arrested for marijuana possession when fewer people than ever believe it should be a crime."And the consequences of an arrest, even if it doesn't result in charges or jail time, can be devastating. An arrest can mean missing a day of work and getting fired. It can lead to a record that prevents a person from finding work in the future. If a person is detained and unable to post bail, an arrest can mean weeks in jail waiting for trial. In extreme cases, an arrest can end in death.A number of states are planning to put marijuana legalization on the ballot in 2016, including California, Arizona and Nevada. If more states legalize and eliminate penalties for marijuana possession, the disparities in state-level marijuana enforcement may draw even more notice, given an activity that's legal in one state can lead to life-ruining consequences for somebody just across the state line. But unless Congress changes laws at the federal level, it looks like we'll be dealing with those consequences for the foreseeable future.Christopher Ingraham writes about politics, drug policy and all things data. He previously worked at the Brookings Institution and the Pew Research Center.Source: Washington Post (DC) Author:  Christopher IngrahamPublished: September 28, 2015Copyright: 2015 Washington Post CompanyContact: letters washpost.com Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/ URL: http://drugsense.org/url/LFHC9dMXCannabisNews -- Cannabis Archiveshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/list/cannabis.shtml 
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Comment #3 posted by observer on September 28, 2015 at 22:50:58 PT
Ring of Power
re: "These numbers refute the myth that nobody actually gets arrested for using marijuana," Mason Tvert of the Marijuana Policy Project, a pro-legalization group, said in a statement. "Itís hard to imagine why more people were arrested for marijuana possession when fewer people than ever believe it should be a crime."Why? Because there are more police and other police state logistical and support personnel and corporate camp-followers. These are people who get government paychecks. And a huge chunk of their police-state make-work involves marijuana. Oh sure, it would be embarrassing to government if it became widely known how many police state actions are taken in the name of "drugs", and when you boil it down, government people really mean "marijuana". For traffic stops, property seizures, the ability to search people in every way, in every place: it is "drugs" (meaning, "pot") which gives government the pretext. In all the ways the Thirteen Colonies detested how the British, with their general warrants could point to anyone, anytime, anywhere, and search them, "drug laws" (read: cannabis prohibition) lets the US government do the same thing to us. Nice and legal. Because as the redcoats imposed their King's general warrant on the colonists, so now do U.S. police have their pot laws. Power corrupts. And be sure: it is an evil power for government to hold over the over people. In the case of the colonists, it was the redcoats' police power of the hated general warrants; in our case the police state powers are predicated on the hated marihuana prohibition laws. Both had similar effects of giving government total power over people.In both cases this ring of power, essentially granting the bearer thereof carte blanche search and seizure powers, has corrupted government (people) wielding it. To those corrupted by this evil ring of power, cannabis is merely a means to an end. It is not that such governmental power-lovers hate pot so much, as it is that marijuana prohibition grants them pretext (legal cover, lying excuse) to kill, steal, and destroy. Both colonial general warrants and pot laws had similar effects of giving government total power over people. Police are loathe to give that up. And in most parts of the United Police States of America, pot laws are still in force, still having their government power enhancing effects. So police and their enablers and profiteers are doubling down where they can. They're gettin' while the gettin' is good. It is about the money (police overtime) and power. Nothing too personal against pot-heads, you see. 
http://drugnewsbot.org
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Comment #2 posted by The GCW on September 28, 2015 at 18:59:46 PT
Editorial in Denver Post
Is "you're fired" in DEA management's vocabulary?By The Denver Post Editorial Boardhttp://www.denverpost.com/editorials/ci_28891257/is-youre-fired-dea-managements-vocabulary
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Comment #1 posted by The GCW on September 28, 2015 at 13:37:02 PT
Squirrels; but no disrespect for the squirrel.
It's like squirrels collecting nuts for winter. They know their gravy train is drying up.Cops who do this are a sickening bunch. Grab a mop.I wonder which states have ramped it up the most? I'm thinking the south...
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