Weekly: This Week in History

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April 8, 1989: Miguel Angel Felix Gallardo is arrested in Mexico. Guillermo Gonzalez Calderoni leads a team of Federal agents who arrest the drug lord in a residential suburb of Guadalajara. Gallardo is imprisoned on charges relating to the kidnapping and murder of Enrique Camarena. His nephews, the Arellano-Felix brothers, inherit part of his drug-trafficking empire.

April 6, 1995: ABC News airs a special entitled "America's War on Drugs: Searching for Solutions" in which legalization is presented as an alternative to the failing war on drugs.

April 11, 1997: Graham Boyd, an ACLU attorney representing a group of plaintiffs including eleven prominent cancer and AIDS physicians in San Francisco, presents to a federal judge the following statement: "The federal government has issued broad threats against physicians who might recommend marijuana to some of their seriously ill patients. These threats have gagged physicians and have impeded the responsible practice of medicine. We assert that doctors have the right to discuss medical marijuana with patients, and we are seeking clear guidelines for physicians who wish to do so."

April 6, 1998: Dr. Dennis Rosenbaum's six year study of 1,798 students, "Assessing the Effects of School-based Drug Education: A Six Year Multilevel Analysis of Project DARE," finds that "DARE had no long-term effects on a wide range of drug use measures," that DARE does not "prevent drug use at the stage in adolescent development when drugs become available and widely used, namely during the high school years," and that "DARE may actually be counterproductive."

April 7, 1999: A Village Voice article, "Truth or D.A.R.E.: the Dubious Drug-Education Program Takes New York," informs readers that "More than a dozen studies have concluded that DARE has no lasting impact. And one six-year study found increased drug use among suburban kids who graduated from DARE."

April 6, 2000: The First National Clinical Conference on Cannabis Therapeutics convenes at the University of Iowa.

April 9, 2002: NORML launches a $500,000 campaign featuring bus shelter signs and telephone booth posters carrying a quote from New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who when asked whether he had ever tried marijuana said, "You bet I did. And I enjoyed it." NORML used Bloomberg as the centerpiece of its campaign to urge the city to stop arresting and jailing people for smoking marijuana. "Millions of people smoke marijuana today. They come from all walks of life, and that includes your own mayor," said NORML Executive Director Keith Stroup.

April 12, 2002: Canada's Toronto Sun reports that a recent report sites Ontario's indoor marijuana industry as the third largest agricultural sector in the province, a $1-billion industry surpassed by dairy's $1.3 billion and beef cattle's $1.2 billion. Add to that the multi-millions being harvested from outdoor crops and marijuana cultivation in this province moves into the top spot on the list.

April 8, 2003: The US House of Representatives Government Reform's Subcommittee on Criminal Justice, Drug Policy, and Human Resources holds a hearing on the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas and Counterdrug Technology Assessment programs because, as Subcommittee Chairman Souder stated, "HIDTA has reached far beyond its intended focus on national drug trafficking. We will need to consider how best to streamline and increase accountability within the HIDTA program."

April 10, 2003: In the wake of the federal conviction of medical marijuana grower Ed Rosenthal, US Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA) and 27 other members of Congress introduce H.R. 1717 (the "Truth in Trials Act").

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Reform the Justice System - Treatment - A view from Colombia

1) Consider New Policies for Incarceration:
2) Wasting Money on Military and Law Enforcement
3) Legalization - money and guns away from dealers, and violent armies
4) Colombia Addicts? - with practically free cocaine, addiction is lower if not the same as the USA. Why not legalize

The world needs to reform Incarceration policies for convicted drug addicts an dealers. The sistem in place only harders drug addicts into a life of crime. Living with a permanent criminal record only makes obtaining normail jobs harder. The trend to of putting drug addicts in jail, and not long term treatment facilities hurts society as a whole.

In Massachucets only certain types of records may be pulled up after so many years. Unless your applying for certain high security jobs. Perhaps the rest of the country can learn from this.

Obviously our current tactics fighting a drug war are having no affect. Ask a senior policeman or drug enforcement officer. They put small players and big players in jail every day. After 30 years the problem has only gotten worse.

Why is the problem worse? It's the way our country and the world is handling the problem. Billions on Military, Law Enforcement, and Prisons have been spent. Why can't we wake up? We do not provide adequate treatment and our policies have failied for 30 years.

LIFE IN COLOMBIA

If you think legalization would turn the whole country into addicts then take into consideration countries like Colombia where Cocaine is readily and cheaply available. Many people are scared of legalization of drugs because they think the whole country would become addicts, and problems would worsen. On the contrary, i have seen the opposite living in Colombia for 2 years.

I am a United States Citizen, living in Colombia for 2 years. When i first arrived i learned that by in large Colombians think of Cocaine as a "Gringo Problem". The problems in Colombia are just as you would find in the USA, however it is diffucult to understand exact statistics with a broken and corrupt political system.

You can quickly observe that 95% of the Colombian people are VERY HARD working people. This is a country tainted by negative news regarding narcotics trafficking. This is a country that has police that arrest people for cocaine and marijuana just as in the United States. With Cocaine available for the same cost as a beer, you realize this is what you would have if we legalized cocaine in the united states. However, contrary to what you may expect, the streets are not lined with drug addicts.

LEGALIZATION TAKE MONEY AND MOTIVATION FROM KILLERS
Yes you can buy 1 gram of cocaine in Colombia from 1 to 3 dollars. In the United States this would vary from 40 to 100 dollars. If you take the money away from international trafficking organizations, such as the huge underground armies in Colombia, 10' s of thousands of lives will be saved every year. Colombia Suffers from having about 5 million internally displaced persons from this war. The country sides and cities are littered with bodies from South America to inside the cities of the USA.

As easy to grow as hay for horses, the Coca plant is alive and can not be stopped from growing. Colombians say if the gringos didnt pay so much for it, then it would not be a problem. Thats a look at the other side.

NOW LET'S FOCUS ON TREATING ADDICTS and STOP FIGHTING WARS AND BUILDING PRISONS

End military aid in Colombia.

James

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