Tales of an academic prole

Patrick D Hahn

Patrick D Hahn
Baltimore, Maryland, USA
June 07
I used to wash trucks for a living.


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The Land of Burnt Faces
The Medical-Industrial Complex
The Psycho-Pharmaceutical Industrial Complex
Anatomy of an epidemic
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Is screening for cancer a giant con job?
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FEBRUARY 28, 2009 10:00PM

War On Drugs = War On Us All Part 1

Rate: 11 Flag


According to this article in the Washington Post Magazine, on July 29, 2008, the Prince George's County Police delivered a package containing 32 pounds of marijuana to the home of Cheye and Trinity Calvo of Berwyn Heights, Maryland.

Let me repeat that: the POLICE delivered a package containing 32 pounds of marijuana to their home, and when the Calvos accepted the package, the SWAT Team broke down their door, shot their two dogs dead, handcuffed Cheye and Trinity and Trinity's mother Georgia, and forced them to kneel while they ransacked their home. They found no drugs, other than the package they themselves delivered. The police have never even apologized for their actions.

And here's the punchline: Cheye Calvo is the MAYOR of Berwyn Heights!

The Prince George's County Police could have notified the local police chief that a raid was about to take place, as a courtesy. If they had, he could have informed them that Mr. Calvo was the mayor of Berwyn Heights, and come along to ensure that everything went peacefully. They didn't bother. Later the Calvos learned that a common tactic among drug dealers is to mail packages of drugs to unsuspecting citizens and then to try to intercept the package before it arrived. Someone had send a package of marijuana to the Calvos, without their knowledge, and on that basis the police decided to stage this armed home invasion.

I've read too many stories like this one, about the drug police breaking into the wrong house and bullying and terrorizing and humiliating the law-abiding citizens therein. This is something that could have happen to any of us. None of us are safe.

Does anyone think it’s a coincidence that we have this incredibly destructive War on Drugs at the same we are all the targets of a multibillion-dollar propagand campaign to get us all addicted to as many kinds of drugs as possible? There's a lot of money at stake here. And the big pharmaceutical companies are no different from the street corner drug dealers -- they hate competition, and they have their armed enforcers to keep competitors off their turf.

Hell, come to think of it, even the street corner drug dealers work hand in hand with the police to keep out the carpetbaggers. The drug police and the drug cartels have come to resemble nothing so much as two warring armies who long ago forgot what they were fighting over and have devolved into looting and terrorizing the populace. The final step in this process is exemplified by Robert A. Simels, a former Assistant US Attorney who styles himself “The Rolls-Royce of Defense Attorneys” and has represented some of Baltimore's most notorious underworld figures. He is now accused by the feds of threatening witnesses on behalf of a Guyanese drug lord. Like the buccaneers of some bygone era, the warriors in this endless conflict owe their allegiance to none save the highest bidder. And the rest of us are caught in the crossfire, like it or not.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

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Rated. Thank you for your post. I support the end of drug prohibition & as a member of LEAP, I take every opportunity to educate others about its failure. Law Enforcement Against Prohibition was founded by former law enforcement officials who worked the front lines in this country's drug war & are pushing for its end.

The devastation is staggering from the violence between drug cartels to overcrowded prisons. With 1 out of 100 Americans incarcerated, the US represents 25% of the world's prison population. Drug use from 1971 to the present has increased from 2% to 46% of Americans over the age of 12.

Many compare our economic recession to the Great Depression, which marked the end of alcohol prohibition as a means to generate revenue thru taxation. Marijuana is the U.S. #1 cash crop.
A Harvard economist estimates an annual $76.8 billion economic gain in the legalization of drugs, a combination of $44.1 billion savings in enforcement & $32.7 billion in tax revenue.

I think we're headed in the right direction under the Obama Administration. DEA announced they will observe state law in the regulation of medical marijuana & stop busting distributors. A California legislator suggested legalizing marijuana to stimulate tax revenue by charging $50 tax per ounce. That's a bold move in light of the Prison Guard Union's lobbying power in Sacramento. Drug prohibition has turned into a cash cow for law enforcement, & the purpose of it all has been lost along the way.

Check out the LEAP website @ http://www.leap.cc/cms/index.php
Here's a preview of what to expect, excerpts from founder Jack Cole's personal story.

'More than a thousand people were arrested as a result of my undercover work. I can’t tell you how many of those young folks would have gone on to have a perfectly productive life had I not intervened but I am sure the number is huge. We have a saying at LEAP, “You can get over an addiction, but you will never get over a conviction.” A conviction will track you every day of your life . . .'

'When I first worked undercover, I was hanging out with about 20 kids in front of a bowling alley at a suburban strip-mall. They were not criminals. They didn’t mistreat anyone, rob, or steal. And they were not drug dealers, at least not as I identify the term. In the words of one of the more courageous Juvenile Court Judges who later threw out many of these types of cases, “They were not selling drugs they were simply accommodating friends.” '
Rated. I agree completely. Prohibition demonstrated just how ineffective alcohol enforcement was, but supporters of the War on Drugs can't see that far back. They have, indeed, forgotten what they're fighting against. We somehow have to convince the cowards in congress to act responsibly - it'd be easier to take on a Mexican cartel with a cap gun.
I have read that when you take marijuana off the table you are left with about 2 million hard core meth, heroin, pain killers and coke users. It seems that if they were the focus something could really be done about the negative effects of drugs.

That is not to say there are not those who abuse marijuana, but with far less destruction to society as hard core drug users. Hopefully this new administration will look at the science and make positive steps towards ending prohibition.
I remember reading about that raid. I wonder how the mayor is doing now, and if this has changed his thinking about the Drug War

Great post. Thanks for the heads up.
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