Beware When Crossing State’s Borders

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  Beware When Crossing State’s Borders

Posted by CN Staff on October 06, 2013 at 05:07:31 PT
By Matt Ironside, Special To The Times 
Source: Seattle Times 

Washington -- While government agencies in Washington, Colorado and in D.C. ponder the impact of legalizing marijuana, a patchwork of changes are likely already in motion in the bordering states where rules didn’t change. A recent trip to Idaho left me with little doubt of that. On Aug. 24, my wife and I were on Interstate 86 just outside of Pocatello, when an Idaho State Police vehicle pulled us over. It had been following us for roughly two miles. When I saw the cruiser’s rollers light up behind me, I ran through the mental checklist: Speeding? Not even close. Taillight out? I checked them the night before. The tabs were up to date, so I was puzzled as to what it could be about. I had hesitated a bit on the lane change I’d just made, but it was so slight — a brief moment of indecision that caused my tire to cross the lane line. As it turns out, that’s all a curious trooper needs.
The officer’s first question was if I were driving impaired. The remainder of the conversation had to do with one thing and one thing only: marijuana. I was asked questions such as: Was I in possession of a Washington state medical-marijuana card? Was I aware of Washington state marijuana laws? I was even asked, “Have you ever used marijuana?” (Because what I did on weekends when I was 22 would have a great deal of impact on my driving decades later.)At a glance, I don’t fit the stereotypical profile of someone who might be exporting pot. I was not asked about alcohol, even though it is most likely still the main intoxicant of choice for impaired drivers. I was not asked about prescription meds, which — according to Teresa Baker, a public-information officer for the Idaho State Police — is the fastest-growing segment of impaired drivers. It seems that my license plate and changes in Washington’s marijuana laws had us on the side of the road.Our state’s changes are bound to have a ripple effect across the wide variety of law-enforcement bodies and jurisdictions where pot is still illegal. Each body has to decide a policy or leave it up to their officers. Baker says Idaho’s state officers are aware of the many intoxicants they have to deal with, but stopped short of saying they put an emphasis on marijuana coming from Washington, even though the action of their officer during my stop suggested otherwise. Seizure of marijuana from Washington was trending slightly lower, according to Baker. Still, Washingtonians on tour — whether they’re driving, flying or taking another mode of transportation — need to be aware of the possibility of profiling. No one likes being profiled. Profiling, even when drawn from a purpose with good intent, generally betrays that goodness. It becomes a prejudice in action, the most basic discrimination. The cost of that was low for someone like me. But there are people in our state for whom the burden of additional profiling might be greater. It is what Washingtonians will have to risk when crossing out of their corner of the country, into Idaho, Oregon and Canada. It is part of the price we pay for being first to test the waters of a new idea.Matt Ironside is senior producer for operations at The Seattle Times. Source: Seattle Times (WA)Author:  Matt Ironside, Special To The Times Published: October 4, 2013Copyright: 2013 The Seattle Times CompanyContact: opinion seatimes.comWebsite:  -- Cannabis  Archives 

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Comment #20 posted by Hope on October 10, 2013 at 13:18:40 PT
Comment 19
That's horrible. Truly horrible. 
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Comment #19 posted by runruff on October 10, 2013 at 08:03:34 PT
One cop put it this way...
When it comes to strong-arming and robbing the citizen farmer, the cops euphumistically call, "perps", how do they justify these raids and robberies?One cop put it this way; The low lifes that grow this stuff illegally will only buy stronger drugs with the money, waste and party the money away.Cops are mostly family men with kids in college and a decent home to support. The money and pot we get from these low lifes do some good for society rather than waste it on criminals.There you have it folks, right from the liouse's mouth. What is a "liouse"? It is a creature with the head of a lion and the hind-quarters of a mouse! The enoumous head is to over compensate for having a little ass and tiny little testicles.
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Comment #18 posted by museman on October 09, 2013 at 11:33:46 PT
if only it were that easy...
"It might just be easier for us to stay out of states where the police make us feel unwelcome."Where may I ask, are the states where the police do make us welcome?Maybe if you fit the profile of a debt-carrying consumer that visibly conforms to the middle class status quo, otherwise, not a chance in hell.A cop -by any other name, badge, gun, or uniform, still is a bio-throwback to the Roman Centurion. They are like vicious dogs that would rather bite than bark, and most of them should probably be put down.
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Comment #17 posted by FoM on October 09, 2013 at 04:52:13 PT
It's good to see you.
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Comment #16 posted by firedog on October 09, 2013 at 03:03:03 PT
Not just Washington plates
I had a similar experience last year, also near Pocatello, but I had Utah plates. (I have since moved to a much more marijuana-friendly state.) I was caught in a small town speed trap. I ended up getting a warning for the speeding but then they hounded me for quite a while about weed. They had a drug dog with them - and they claimed the dog "alerted" to the presence of marijuana in the vehicle - which was bull. That dog probably smelled my dogs or some spilled food in the back. When they requested to search the vehicle, I said I was in a big hurry to make it home and that I was already late. They had nothing, really, so they let me go.If California and Oregon legalize next year, it will make for a lot of cars to profile. It might just be easier for us to stay out of states where the police make us feel unwelcome. But then, my tourist dollar stay out of those states, too. Can't have it both ways.
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Comment #15 posted by ekim on October 08, 2013 at 08:14:25 PT
cannabigerol cbg
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Comment #14 posted by The GCW on October 07, 2013 at 17:33:06 PT
Wearing Coloradogrownhempshirtacrossstate line
Colorado farmer harvests first U.S. commercial hemp crop in 56 yearsColorado farmer Ryan Loflin made history last weekend by harvesting the nation's first commercial hemp crop in 56 years.Cont. happens if a Colorado citizens makes a shirt out of this hemp crop and then crosses the Kansas border while wearing it?????
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Comment #13 posted by FoM on October 07, 2013 at 09:25:18 PT
Buying Marijuana in North Korea Sure Sounds Easy
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Comment #12 posted by Hope on October 07, 2013 at 08:47:28 PT
The squirrel
You let the squirrel out of the bag!We love you. You're a lovable guy, Runruff. It can't be helped. I've always loved the term, "Chasing the dragon" and I use the term fairly often in reference to many things and activities.Don't chase that cheesecake dragon! It'll make you pay! Etc., etc. Lol! Chasing the squirrel. I love it!
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Comment #11 posted by runruff on October 07, 2013 at 06:23:27 PT
I let the cat out of the bag, didn't I?-hee heeThank you all for your so kind comments and best wishes.
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Comment #10 posted by Hope on October 06, 2013 at 21:20:38 PT

I knew it.
I was trying so hard not to do a double post. And I did. Aaargh. It just wouldn't seem to post.
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Comment #9 posted by Hope on October 06, 2013 at 21:18:43 PT

"Chasing the squirrel". That is the funniest thing I've heard in a long time. 
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Comment #7 posted by Hope on October 06, 2013 at 21:14:39 PT

I hope you had a happy one, Runruff.
And ekim is right. 
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on October 06, 2013 at 20:10:37 PT

I didn't know it was your Birthday. Happy Birthday!
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Comment #5 posted by Hope on October 06, 2013 at 17:50:28 PT

"Chasing the Squirrel"
I don't care who you are... that's funny.
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Comment #4 posted by ekim on October 06, 2013 at 15:08:33 PT

Happy Birthday runruff
and thank you for everything you have done for the good 
of the world.Painfully you have shown how patience is the way.
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Comment #3 posted by museman on October 06, 2013 at 09:36:16 PT

Chasing the Squirrel
Well they're in a good place for it. Squirrels are everywhere. Kind of like the cops, chasing the bud. Cops, meth heads and dogs have a lot in common, except dogs know how to love.
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Comment #2 posted by runruff on October 06, 2013 at 07:48:35 PT

Cops are potiphiles.
During the rest of the year you cannot find a cop if you wanted one. Right now you cannot go one mile down the road without seeing a state trooper with someone pulled over. Yesterday My Dear Wife took me out for the day to celebrate my birthday. It was beautiful, except for the state Police everywhere going through people's cars. There are many gardens here in the valley so the cops will most likely score some. If the local growers are smart they will wait until these leeches crawl back under their rocks and then it is business as usual. There has been little to no raids on private property. We seem to have put the kibosh on that treasue hunt, so now they rob us on the street.
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Comment #1 posted by runruff on October 06, 2013 at 06:40:02 PT

Pet names for addictions.
When people became addicted to opium they called it, "chasing the dragon"!When people become addicted to meth I call it , "chasing the squirril"!
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