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Drug War Chronicle #512 - November 30, 2007

1. Canadian Tories' Mandatory Minimum Drug Bill Draws Stiff Opposition, But Can It Be Stopped?

Last week, Canada's Conservative government introduced legislation to create mandatory minimum sentences for some drug offenses, including marijuana cultivation. Now, opposition is emerging, but will it be able to block Canada's lurch toward a US-style drug war?

2. Chewing and Grinding: A South Dakota Drug War Story

Going home from the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally should have been a pleasant ride for Nebraskan Eric Sage. It didn't turn out that way--for him or his friends.

3. Medical Marijuana: Courts in California and Colorado Rule Cops Must Return Patient's Medicine

Law enforcement agencies which cannot seem to grasp that medical marijuana is legal in their states got their hands slapped by courts in Colorado and California this week. In both states, judges ruled that police must return medical marijuana unlawfully seized from legal patients or providers.

4. Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

"Ron Paul on Medical Marijuana," "Hillary Clinton Pledges Support for Needle Exchange," "John Edwards Criticizes the War on Drugs," "Does Marijuana Make You Better at Sports?," "John McCain's Awful Response to a Cop Who Wants to End the Drug War," "Update on Pain Physician Dr. William Mangino," "Needle Exchange Action May Be Imminent," "California Sent 1,000 Drug Offenders to Fight the Forest Fire," "Republicans Try Marijuana at Higher Rate Than Democrats."

5. Students: Intern at DRCNet and Help Stop the Drug War!

Apply for an internship at DRCNet for this fall (or spring), and you could spend the semester fighting the good fight!

6. Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Bad cops cost cases in one Georgia county, a bad cop gets popped in another Georgia county, a bad cop gets several breaks from his colleagues in Michigan, and a bad cop goes to prison in Texas.

7. Harm Reduction: New Jersey's First Legal Needle Exchange Is Open

New Jersey's first legal needle exchange opened for business Tuesday. The move comes nearly a year after the legislature finally approved a pilot program for up to six cities. Look for more exchanges to come in Camden, Newark, and Paterson.

8. Hemp: Court Rejects Bid By North Dakota Farmers to Get DEA Out of the Way

A federal district judge in Bismarck has dismissed a lawsuit by two would-be North Dakota hemp farmers who sought to get the DEA out of their way. Congress should address the issue, the judge said.

9. Europe: Edinburgh Police Plan for "Drug Tolerance Zone" in City Center Stirs Controversy

A high police official in Edinburgh has broached the notion of not arresting small-time drug offenders in the city center, but the idea has attracted a lot of heat, and now the police are backpedaling.

10. Southwest Asia: US Plan For Aerial Spraying of Afghan Poppies on Hold -- for Now

Facing strong opposition from the Afghan government, European allies, and even elements of the US government, the State Department announced Wednesday it had given up on an aerial spraying program designed to eradicate Afghan opium poppies -- at least for now.

11. Southeast Asia: Most Killed in Thailand's 2003 Drug War Not Involved With Drugs, Panel Finds

Investigatory panels looking into 2,500 drug war killings in Thailand in the spring of 2003 have determined that more than half of those killed had nothing to do with drugs. Meanwhile, at least one Thai politician wants to return to the tough drug policies that led to those mass killings.

12. Death Penalty: More Executions in Iran, More Death Sentences in Vietnam

The use of the death penalty against drug offenders continues apace in the Middle East and Southeast Asia. Iran executes six, Vietnam upholds one death sentence, and Vietnamese prosecutors seek 11 more.

13. Web Scan

Libby Davies, Pew Center, Judge Jerry Paradis, Dean Becker CNN/YouTube submission.

14. Weekly: This Week in History

Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.

15. Job Opportunity: Field Director, SAFER, Denver

Safer Alternatives for Enjoyable Recreation (SAFER) is hiring a Field Director for its Denver-based office.

16. Internships: Two Openings at Americans for Safe Access

ASA has two internship opportunities available for the spring semester, one in their Washington, DC office and one in their Oakland, CA office.

17. Feedback: Do You Read Drug War Chronicle?

Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.

18. Resource: Reformer's Calendar Accessible Through DRCNet Web Site

Visit our new web site each day to see a running countdown to the events coming up the soonest, and more.

19. Resource: DRCNet Web Site Offers Wide Array of RSS Feeds for Your Reader

A new way for you to receive DRCNet articles -- Drug War Chronicle and more -- is now available.

20. Webmasters: Help the Movement by Running DRCNet Syndication Feeds on Your Web Site!

Support the cause by featuring automatically-updating Drug War Chronicle and other DRCNet content links on your web site!
Permission to Reprint: This issue of Drug War Chronicle is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Articles of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.

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