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Drug War Chronicle
(formerly The Week Online with DRCNet)

Issue #354, 9/17/04

"Raising Awareness of the Consequences of Drug Prohibition"

Phillip S. Smith, Editor
David Borden, Executive Director

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

  1. EDITORIAL: WHAT IS IT ABOUT OPIUM?
    In response to the DEA's "drugs and terrorism" exhibit visiting New York, we reprint David Borden's October 2001 editorial which explains the fundamental truth of drug prohibition that the DEA is intentionally leaving out.
  2. CANADA CANNABIS CAULDRON BUBBLING AGAIN
    Canada has been in a tizzy over marijuana for the last few years. The minority Liberal government of Prime Minister Paul Martin hopes to quiet the issue by reintroducing its "decriminalization" bill. Meanwhile, Canada's best known reformer continues a 90-day sentence as a "drug trafficker" for passing a joint at a rally, and a Vancouver "cannabis cafe" finally is raided but reopens.
  3. DEA BRINGS TRAVELING "DRUGS = TERROR" EXHIBIT TO NYC AS CITY COMMEMORATES 9/11 ANNIVERSARY
    With remembrances of 9/11 commemorations still ringing in their ears, denizens of New York City's Times Square had something new to gawk at this week. Beginning Tuesday, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) brought its traveling exhibition, "Target America: Drug Traffickers, Terrorists, and You," to town. Reformers and families are offended.
  4. DRUGS AND SPORTS: A NEW ARENA FOR DRUG REFORMERS?
    On February 12, Attorney General John Ashcroft held a press event to announce indictments for alleged distribution of steroids and money laundering. That day he did more than spotlight a high-profile case. Ashcroft deftly opened a new front in the war on drugs, implementing a strategy that President Bush had signaled three weeks earlier.
  5. NEWSBRIEF: IN GOTHAM SHOCKER, NEW YORK POST CALLS FOR REPEAL OF ROCKEFELLER LAWS
    In a surprise move, the right-leaning tabloid The New York Post editorialized Monday in support of repealing the Empire State's draconian Rockefeller drug laws. A light sentence for a student the Post had dubbed a "Pot Princess" finally got the Post upset over unequal justice.
  6. NEWSBRIEF: DRUG REFORMER CHALLENGER DEFEATS HARD-LINE DISTRICT ATTORNEY IN ALBANY, NEW YORK
    David Soares, an outspoken advocate for repeal of New York's draconian Rockefeller drug law, won the Albany County Democratic primary race for district attorney Tuesday in a lopsided vote. Drug reformers hailed the election results as a bellwether and a victory for the cause of repealing the Rockefeller laws.
  7. NEWSBRIEF: YES, FOUR OUNCES OF MARIJUANA AT HOME IS LEGAL, SAYS ALASKA SUPREME COURT
    The Alaska Supreme Court reaffirmed its groundbreaking 1975 decision barring the state from criminalizing the possession of up to four ounces of marijuana in the privacy of one's home.
  8. NEWSBRIEF: DRUG CZAR ATTACKS OREGON MEDICAL MARIJUANA INITIATIVE
    US drug czar John Walters, who intervened famously against marijuana initiative efforts in 2002, most notably in Nevada, is back at it this year. Walters has come out against OMMA2, an Oregon medical marijuana initiative that would break new ground by creating state-regulated dispensaries.
  9. NEWSBRIEF: OAKLAND POLL SHOWS STRONG SUPPORT FOR LEGALIZATION OF MARIJUANA (press release from California NORML)
    A new poll conducted by David Binder Research shows unprecedentedly strong support for legalization of marijuana among Oakland voters. The poll was commissioned by the campaign for Measure Z, the Oakland Cannabis Initiative, which would make private adult marijuana offenses the lowest enforcement priority and put the city on record in favor of taxed and regulated marijuana sales.
  10. NEWSBRIEF: SOUTH AFRICA TO REJECT MARIJUANA DECRIMINALIZATION
    South Africa's lead anti-drug agency, the Central Drug Authority, has released a draft paper rejecting the decriminalization of marijuana, or "dagga" as locally known, the Johannesburg Sunday Times reported. The paper will guide the country's marijuana policy as part of the National Drug Master Plan until 2009.
  11. NEWSBRIEF: MORE DRUG EXECUTIONS IN IRAN, SAUDI ARABIA
    Both Iran and Saudi Arabia again meted out the death penalty to accused drug traffickers this month. According to the human rights group Amnesty International, Iran was a distant second to China in executions last year. Saudi Arabia also resorts frequently to the death penalty for drug offenses.
  12. NEWSBRIEF: THIS WEEK'S CORRUPT COPS STORY
    Let this feature slide for one week and we hear it from the readers. Not to fret -- there is always more coming down the pike -- prohibition ensures it. While last week we came up empty, we make up for it this week with a double dose of corrupt cops. This week's honorees' are from Weymouth, Massachusetts, and Lumberton, North Carolina.
  13. NEWSBRIEF: MEXICO SHUTS DOWN THREE "YOUTH TREATMENT" CENTERS, DEPORTS KIDS BACK TO US
    Mexican immigration officials, acting on complaints of abuse and mistreatment, shut down three US-based "youth treatment" centers and began deporting some 590 youths back to the United States, Reuters reported Saturday.
  14. THE REFORMER'S CALENDAR
    Showing up at an event can be the best way to get involved! Check out this week's calendar for events from today through next year, across the US and around the world!

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