Drug War Chronicle #615 - January 8, 2010

Happy New Year from Drug War Chronicle.
We are optimistic about drug policy reform in 2010!

1. Feature: New York Post's Attack on "Heroin How-to" Harm Reduction Pamphlet Fails to Get It Dropped

New York City and national media have been abuzz all week over a city health department pamphlet that provides harm reduction tips to injection drug users. But despite the offensive led by a right wing tabloid and a handful of professional drug warriors, harm reduction won the battle -- but what about the larger war?

2. Drug War Chronicle Book Review: "Dorm Room Dealers: Drugs and the Privileges of Race and Class," by A. Rafik Mohamed and Erik D. Fritsvold (2010, Lynne Reinner Publishers, 197 pp., $49.95 HB)

A pair of sociologists get inside a San Diego area network of campus drug sellers and users to ask and answer the question of why privileged youth on the path to success would risk everything to peddle pot or pills. The short answer? They're not really very much at risk -- they're rich and white.

3. Sentencing: New Jersey Legislature Rolls Back Mandatory Minimums, Governor Will Sign Bill Into Law

The New Jersey legislature has become the first in the nation to pass a bill reforming mandatory minimum school zone laws. Gov. Jon Corzine has said he will sign it.

4. Latin America: Mexico Drug War Update

The death toll has risen every year since Mexican President Felipe Calderon declared war on the cartels in December 2006. More than 2,000 in 2007, more than 5,000 in 2008, and last year's toll was 7,724. And there are 137 more already this year.

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

Sheriffs gone wild, narcs gone greedy, a jail guard gone horny, and a couple of jail guards gone dumb.

6. Marijuana: Initiative to Legalize Marijuana in Nevada Filed, Vote Will Come in 2012

Will the fourth time be the charm? Organizers of a new "tax and regulate" marijuana initiative in Nevada hope so as they roll out a campaign aimed at the November 2012 election.

7. Medical Marijuana: Colorado Judge Rules Users Have Right to Buy It

A Colorado judge has delivered a shot across the bow to towns and cities moving to ban medical marijuana dispensaries on the grounds they violate federal law.

8. Sentencing: California Appeals Court Upholds Ban on Probationer's Medical Marijuana Use

A California judge can order a medical marijuana patient to hand in his ID card and give up his medicine if he wants to go on probation instead of to prison, an appeals court has ruled in a 2-1 decision. The ruling provoked a harsh dissent.

9. Canada: Mandatory Minimum Bill for Marijuana Growing Dies Sudden Death When Prime Minister Shuts Down Parliament

In a political maneuver to silence critics while Canada hosts the Winter Olympics, Prime Minister Steven Harper has shut down parliament until a new session begins in March. The move kills a harsh bill that was one vote from passage and would have imposed mandatory minimum prison sentences on people growing as a little as a single marijuana plant.

10. Europe: Dutch Delay Plan to Make Border Cannabis Cafes Members Only

Belgians, Frenchmen, Germans, and other "drug tourists" looking to score on the Dutch border have won a temporary reprieve, as officials in Limburg have delayed plans to make cannabis cafes members only.

11. Weekly: This Week in History

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

12. Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

"It's Time to Legalize Medical Marijuana in Professional Sports," "Cocaine Vaccine Backfires Horribly," "Former Drug Czar Invents Awesome New Drug," "Consider the Possibility That People Do Drugs Because They Enjoy It," "States Don't Need Federal Permission to Legalize Medical Marijuana," "Cop Wants His Job Back After Planning the Sting That Killed Rachel Hoffman," "Why is DEA Condemning Efforts to Prevent Heroin Deaths?," "Judge Reprimanded for Illegally Drug Testing Random Guy," "Romantic Comedy 'It's Complicated' Gets R Rating for Depicting Casual Marijuana Use."
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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Criminal JusticeAsset Forfeiture, Collateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Court Rulings, Drug Courts, Due Process, Felony Disenfranchisement, Incarceration, Policing (2011 Drug War Killings, 2012 Drug War Killings, 2013 Drug War Killings, 2014 Drug War Killings, 2015 Drug War Killings, 2016 Drug War Killings, 2017 Drug War Killings, Arrests, Eradication, Informants, Interdiction, Lowest Priority Policies, Police Corruption, Police Raids, Profiling, Search and Seizure, SWAT/Paramilitarization, Task Forces, Undercover Work), Probation or Parole, Prosecution, Reentry/Rehabilitation, Sentencing (Alternatives to Incarceration, Clemency and Pardon, Crack/Powder Cocaine Disparity, Death Penalty, Decriminalization, Defelonization, Drug Free Zones, Mandatory Minimums, Rockefeller Drug Laws, Sentencing Guidelines)CultureArt, Celebrities, Counter-Culture, Music, Poetry/Literature, Television, TheaterDrug UseParaphernalia, Vaping, ViolenceIntersecting IssuesCollateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Violence, Border, Budgets/Taxes/Economics, Business, Civil Rights, Driving, Economics, Education (College Aid), Employment, Environment, Families, Free Speech, Gun Policy, Human Rights, Immigration, Militarization, Money Laundering, Pregnancy, Privacy (Search and Seizure, Drug Testing), Race, Religion, Science, Sports, Women's IssuesMarijuana PolicyGateway Theory, Hemp, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Marijuana Industry, Medical MarijuanaMedicineMedical Marijuana, Science of Drugs, Under-treatment of PainPublic HealthAddiction, Addiction Treatment (Science of Drugs), Drug Education, Drug Prevention, Drug-Related AIDS/HIV or Hepatitis C, Harm Reduction (Methadone & Other Opiate Maintenance, Needle Exchange, Overdose Prevention, Pill Testing, Safer Injection Sites)Source and Transit CountriesAndean Drug War, Coca, Hashish, Mexican Drug War, Opium ProductionSpecific DrugsAlcohol, Ayahuasca, Cocaine (Crack Cocaine), Ecstasy, Heroin, Ibogaine, ketamine, Khat, Kratom, Marijuana (Gateway Theory, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Medical Marijuana, Hashish), Methamphetamine, New Synthetic Drugs (Synthetic Cannabinoids, Synthetic Stimulants), Nicotine, Prescription Opiates (Fentanyl, Oxycontin), Psilocybin / Magic Mushrooms, Psychedelics (LSD, Mescaline, Peyote, Salvia Divinorum)YouthGrade School, Post-Secondary School, Raves, Secondary School