Obama Declares War on American Drug Users

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Speaking in Mexico today, President Obama embraced the exact hard-line drug war philosophy he rejected on the campaign trail:

Obama acknowledged that the United States shares responsibility for bloodshed and kidnappings in Mexico that have spilled across the border into the United States. Acknowledging that U.S. drug use fuels the cartels, Obama said, "I will not pretend this is Mexico's responsibility alone."

"We have a responsibility as well, we have to do our part," Obama said. He said the U.S. must crack down on drug use and the flow of weapons into Mexico. [AP]

Specifically, he said, "We have to crack down on drug use in our cities and towns," and while I've been accused at times of giving Obama too much credit when it comes to drug policy, there's just no silver lining in any of this. A crackdown is a crackdown. Anyone who talks that way is a full-blown drug warrior. He's always talked tough when it comes to Mexico, but this flat-out endorsement of busting drug users here at home is a new low.

Thus, Obama becomes a rather peculiar specimen as far as drug war politics are concerned. This is a guy who's talked about decriminalizing marijuana and "shifting the model" in the war on drugs, only to then take a step backwards after achieving enough to power to actually move those ideals forward in a meaningful way. Some have questioned his sincerity all along, but I don't. Drug policy reform just makes sense, so when I hear someone talking about it, I assume they understand the words coming out of their own mouth.

…which brings me to the tragic conclusion that Obama is doing all of this even though he knows it's wrong. Lives are being lost in a brutal and escalating war, while billions are being wasted away during an escalating economic meltdown, and he's opting to fan the flames rather than show real leadership. It's arguably even more disgraceful than what we've seen from our opponents in the past, because Obama bears the burden of knowing the truth.

Regardless of whatever the hell is going on in the President's head, it is just a fact that the American people have never been so sick of the war on drugs as they are this exact moment. There is a national dialogue about our drug policy taking place in the press on a daily basis, fueled to no small extent by Obama's own hypocrisy and intransigence. Determined though he may be to repeat the mistakes of his predecessors, Obama will not escape scrutiny as they did. That much is already clear.
Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

Re: "if you would actually read what I write

You would see that I have been pushing organizations to start public protests campaigns." And what is that supposed to have to do with my suggesting that YOU picket YOUR county courthouse, in the spirit of think globally, act locally? I read what you wrote, buddy, and I don't understand why you are so antagonistic and dismissive of fellow reformers. You don't have a fricking monopoly on good ideas and no one knows the best way forward, that's what respectful dialogue is for.
-newageblues

My antagonism

is directed. Not at reformers but at reform organizers and leaders who I think can be doing more.

Vociferous debate is valid discourse that I believe can better motivate others in some situation.

You don't like it that I work hard at making things happen. Tough love Bubba. You obviously don't have any monopoly on ideas or you would be willing to sign you name to your distracting Democratic Party hack bullshit!

I was around when Richard Nixon declared this war on drugs and I want to still be around when it is ended. That will not happen if we follow your do nothing rants.

Unlike you I consider the children being thrown into American prisons each and every day that this drug war continues. I will not fight this fight another 37 fucking years.

I consider the death and destruction in Mexico and Afghanistan and I will not tolerate this for another fifty fucking years. All we hear from you is shut up an sit down. NO!

Compartmentalization and denial

"What are you talking about? 13 states have legalized medicinal cannabis and Obama is on record saying no drug raids unless state laws are being violated. "

The west coast U.S attorneys have made it clear that there is really no change in the policy. That they will still make excuses and go after any dispensary they choose to go after.

"That leaves 37 states to go."

13 states in 13 years is a strategy that will take another 37 years to get 50 states just for medical pot.

"And 50 states to legalize recreational weed, a few of them might do it by referendum next year."

Decades before any significant change under your way of ding things.

"If people like you make him hate reformers enough, it could backfire, but then that might be ok with you, you probably don't want any cannabis only laws to pass anyway."

Intimidation, coercion and manipulation are tools of the prohibitionists. I won't capitulate to that feeble bullshit.

"You expect him to continue ...."

I expect Obama and the other drug warriors to see the harm they are doing leaving billions of dollars in drug profits in the hands of criminals.

I expect the drug warriors to see the billions they are putting in the pockets of the Taliban.

I expect the Obama drug warrior thugs to see that they are leaving American children exposed to addict dealers and drug gangsters by prohibiting responsible regulation and adult supervision of the drug markets.

I expect the drug warriors to STOP COMMITTING TREASON by their enforcing a black market that givers financial "aid" and tactical "comfort" to America's enemies, both foreign and domestic.

PhillyNORML - 2009 Global Cannabis March

The 2009 Global Cannabis March, or Philadelphia Cannabis Festival, will be taking place on Saturday May 2, 2009. The event is still being planned, so more information will be posted as it becomes available. The GCM is an annual event that brings out hundreds of supporters, patients, and onlookers. It's an excellent opportunity to show just how popular legalization is, and to have a lot of fun. In 2008 we had our biggest one yet with over 400 people. This year we hope to top 1,000. Check back often for updates!

Saturday, May 2, 2009
Meet at Broad St. and South St. at 3:30 - 4:00pm
March towards Headhouse Square at 4:20pm
Arrive at Headhouse Square by 5:20pm
Speeches - done by 6:30pm

What Do They Have on Barack?

Barack's comments do seem out of character with his campaign promises. I'm old enough to know the jokes about campaign promises, but he seemed to be working to keep them, until now…

So I wonder what they have on him? How are they able to blackmail him into going along with their continuation of heavy handed tactics which haven't worked?

Dear Barack,
Please remember that the God you worship said, "nothing is hidden except to be made known." So don't think your (or whoever you're protecting) deep dark secrets will stay that way, especially at the hands of blackmailers!

Come clean now. End this evil, expensive, and failing prohibition against drugs and step up to the plate with intelligent regulations.

Don't be like abusive husbands and parents who think they just haven't been tough enough! More spankings! More slappings! More locking up in tiny rooms! Guess what, that is the judgement that awaits those who promote such tactics! Is that really where you want to be?!

It's long past time for you to separate yourself from the incorrigible thugs who pose as righteous defenders of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

NewOldSalt

What do they have on Obama?

Probably some variant of the college frat "elephant walk", done in a dark room with hidden cameras to keep the participants black mailable.

Google "elephant walk".

The Internet provides endless opportunities to affect change

William Aiken

"We have to crack down on drug use in our towns and cities."
President Obama, Mexico City, Mexico April 16, 2009

This quote from President Obama during his first official trip to Mexico, inspired me to take action. I submitted an on-line letter-to-editor to my local newspaper, pointing out the hypocricy of Obama's evolving position on drug policy, wrote to one of my Senators critizing her for supporting the Edward Byrne grants and edited & signed a letter to President Obama as part of a Drug Policy Alliance campaign.

Almost every Senator and Congress person has a website that illustrates their position on key issues with an E-mail for contacting them. Most newspapers can receive letters-to-the-editor or op-ed pieces via the internet. So if you haven't already, go sign up for these on-line campaigns with such organizations as the DRCNet, the Marijuana Policy Project, LEAP, NORML or the DPA. If they're some way of packaging these drug reform groups, together with links to their respective E-mail campaigns for various drug policy causes, it could easily maximize the number of people writing to the media and government that demand an end to the drug war.

The public is growing more skeptical of the drug war, however our elected officials are lagging behind this trend. They need to hear from the people. And we in turn, need to follow up those communications with phone calls. That's the kind of action that will a positive impact on how they view the issue of reform.

Dead-on and then some

Letters to the editor that identify politicians and their failings on drug policy go a long way toward forcing politicians to stop and think about their policy positions.

We need to be flooding the congress with our opinions.

Screw Barack the Abomination.

When we get out into the streets they will listen.

Answer

Your article: Obama Won't Say Why He Opposes Marijuana Legalization

just seemed to me to be the biggest Obama ass kissing, excuse making article that I have seen you post. It just pissed me off. I should probably apologize to you, I'm sorry.

Robert
VA

Really?

I just don't know what to say. What a weak example. If you thought I was making excuses, you fundamentally misunderstood the post. Yes, I think Obama privately understands our argument better than he's letting on, and that assumption is based on his own 2004 statement in favor of decrim. But the fact that he continues to support the drug war even though he knows it's wrong is reprehensible.

Here's what I wrote the day before that:

http://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle_blog/2009/mar/26/obama_insults_onlin...

Ass-kissing?

Crack Down!

A crack down is just is what is needed to further fan the violence, increase profits, and create a certain crisis to erode our rights even further, .i.e., more gun control!

Obama is just like the rest of the self-servers and liars

I was raised in the segregated South. Blacks were not allowed to live in our white neighborhood or attend our public schools. It was euphemistically called "separate but equal". It took courage and sacrifice, but the PEOPLE not the politicians changed that (although Kennedy did help).

Obama may support change, but is waiting for the political winds to change. He's a true politician and a coward. I voted for him as a way to show respect for blacks and owe him nothing. He has been given by the people an opportunity to promote real "change", just like he campaigned to do.

The only real alternative is to vote Green or Libertarian to push one of the major parties to reform. Whether its Ron Paul or Dennis Kucinich, it really doesn't matter. Obama lacks the courage to make a stand, perhaps Mexico or Canada will show our politicians the light. We Americans are too fat and happy to have compassion for the victims of war perpetrated by our politicians. The consequences of our inaction may be costly, particularly for our children and our formerly great nation's future.

I'm old and have had a great life. It's unfortunate that the lust of our political elite is ruining the future for the children of America.

Obama cant legalize the powers that be

any one who profits from prohibition will kill him .namely the police just like they killed Kennedy they will murder him .I'm afraid they will do that i don't blame him .what he should do is bring home our soldiers from Iraq sic them on all these corrupt police .and take our country back from these crimnals.its always the same the ones with the guns make the rules .thats how so few can control so many

Obama should sacrafice himself

to save thousands of other lives

Drug Warrior Obama Declares Civil War

Drug Warrior Obama Declares Civil War

                                    

Thanks to Kalash for reminding me of this quote from candidate Drug Warrior Obama:

Sen. Barack Obama, May 2008 "And we'll crack down on the demand for drugs in our own communities, and restore funding for drug task forces and the COPS program. We must win the fights on our own streets if we're going to secure the region."

SIGN THE PETITIONS

Tell President Obama Marijuana Law Reform is No Joke at:

http://www.drugpolicy.org/homepage.cfm

TargetCongress to Legalize marijuana and end the senseless "War on Drugs':

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/26/legalize-marijuana-and-end-the-sensele...

reply to aahpat

I said "If people like you make him hate reformers enough, it could backfire, but then that might be ok with you, you probably don't want any cannabis only laws to pass anyway." You reply "Intimidation, coercion and manipulation are tools of the prohibitionists. I won't capitulate to that feeble bullshit". I'm not trying to do any of that to you, I'm just telling you one possible outcome of calling people like Obama TRAITORS.
So how would you vote on a cannabis only legalization referendum?
And do you understand the concept behind think globally, act locally? 1000 groups of 5 people picketing their county courthouse would make a much bigger impression than 5000 people marching in some big city.
-newageblues

Learn to read what you write

You truly don't understand that telling someone that their words to a politician could have a deleterious effect is no more than trying to stop a person from speaking by making them gag themselves. Politician who can't handle vociferous political speech are pretty poor politicians. I am not going to self censor to appease a politician who I already know wants desperately to fuck over everything I believe in.

I knew Obama was an a-hole drug warrior two years ago so don't you try to make me responsible for his authoritarian ways. I tried to warn America against him and apologist sycophants like you shouted me down.

'Think globally act locally' is politician speak for do nothing effective. Any protest of a few people in a small town MAY, if its the slowest news day of the year, get page B-10 coverage in the local paper and nothing more. This kind of action or coverage will NOT impact the opinions of members of the United States congress. Members of state legislatures. There is only one way to impact the politicians in a way that EFFECTS change in the politicians and that is mass protests. Large protests in large cities. Protests in state capitals. Protests in Washington,D.C.

Your ineffectual appeasers posture toward Democrat drug warrior politicians is sickening. Don't expect any further responses from me because you are distracting from the topics and issues while contributing nothing.

meeneecat's picture

lock up the drug warriors

I really wish I didn't have to tell all those Obama-infatuated people "I told you so". This is why we need a viable third party. I didn't trust that Obama was going to do anything but the same old $hit as far as drug policy was concerned, (among other issues that he spoke of which he also was full of it)...so I voted for someone else. I don't know people can take the words of politicians and these washington elites at face value. It's too bad, that since Obama has already admitted to marijuana and cocaine use, that some drug warrior cop can't just go and arrest him for "confessing to his crime"...I'd pay to see that...and then see what Obama has to say about his drug war then. How cathartic would it be to see a bunch of these drug warrior politicians fall victims to these very laws that they help support and advocate for...because you know that they all are snorting meth off toilet seats and soliciting hookers on the weekends...

Their are terrorists posing as police in Washington,Oregon,Calif

ornia,and other states who are actually mad that medical marijuana farmers know how to grow large enough plants to use leftover stems for producing composite lumber and fiberboard. These terrorists are actually trying to prevent the medical marijuana farmers from helping to opening mills that would create thousands of jobs. We have found medical marijuana plants make for the best hemp products and terrorists posing as law enforcement are trying to stop it from happening. Its simple terrorism and fraud to use illegal protectionism to stop much needed jobs from an already convenient,and available source with medical marijuana plants for hemp products jobs and craft projects.

So Why is Mexico debating Marijuana legalization now?

Doesn't anybody out there think it is interesting that after President Obama met with Mexico, and made this comment; Mexico suddenly started a debate about legalizing marijuana? Obama said he was going to something about "demand." He could mean dealing with it? The smartest thing Mexico could do right now for their people is make some drugs legal, this could stop the violence and boost the Mexican economy. People used to go to Vegas to gamble, now it's everywhere; but back it the day Vegas raked in the dough.

Obama is doing awesome with the drug war so far. Why would he fuck it up by being a harsh warrior now, when this insanity has happened forever in the past with no success. Obama can't really want to dig himself out of the worst mess in history and continue to lie to the people with more of the same. At some point the truth can make him money for his administration. He just has to be careful to cater to the old timers to some extent too.

Crackdown?

Many reformers are making too much of the term, "crackdown." It has not been defined by anyone in the administration. Obama knows pot is less harmful than alcohol. So, does that mean he's going to crackdown on alcohol consumers? Not likely.

Nothing Obama has done so far diminishes the fact that all his actions so far have been the hallmark of someone who wants to be a great president. No one can become a great president unless they end the monstrously destructive, counter-productive fraud of marijuana prohibition. Obama knows that. He has already stated he believes in marijuana decriminalization. Being the consumate politician, Obama knows politics is the art of the possible.

Obama will let marijuana reform happen, but he's not going to lead the band on it. That's up to us.

John Thomas

Obamma's crackdown

Hello, my name is Darren Prosser and I live in Tuscarawas County, Ohio. This is my first public comment on the Drug War since I resigned after three years as my county's health department's jail and community corrections drug/alcohol counselor in 2005.
What a crackdown supplies is the funding to arrest more drug offenders. It also encourages,from my subjective point of view, law enforcement to feel a need to compete with each other and other units for more arrests and thus more results justifying the job they do. Many of the narcotics officers I met were what you would call true believers and the other half out to further their career thru numerous arrests.
A crackdown supplies the prison system with non-violent offenders who are simply grist for the mill.
Mr. Obama knows that and the change he talked of was illusion. Perhaps Mr. Obama should visit his local county lock up and feel, smell and taste with his senses and soul the terror of a young man or woman who is to be sent to prison for a court ordered urine screen they failed after some youthful rite of passage.
I finally could not stand to look at myself after three years of this. I rationalized that my actions were helping the people on probation or in jail stay out of the system. Yet, I knew it was wrong and at the end spoke the truth before leaving. The system then let me know the power it could use by simply creating lies to discredit myself and this stress almost caused my wife to miscarry. This is not a call for sympathy but one man's experience of being part of this immoral and evil system, seeing the targets of it and also of being a target.
Barack Obama you have the chance to change this unethical war on so many fronts yet you plan to crackdown. Crackdown is just another word for more suffering,whether thru keeping narco-terrorism in business by building their profit margin or the blood and suffering of your fellow citizens.

I don''t want any more answers from you anyway, aahpat

Your self-righteousness is insufferable.Go to hell.
-newageblues

a four word question for Obama

"is alcohol a drug?" There's only one science based answer. Obama needs to clarify whether his comments about reducing drug use include reducing alcohol use. And his call for science based public policy has to be politely but firmly put back in his face because the science is clear: alcohol is far more dangerous than cannabis: to life, limb, fetus and more. Obama is playing a losing hand on cannabis. He needs to be pressured into directly addressing the issues related to alcohol vs. cannabis. For example, why should the government prefer that people use [killer] alcohol instead of cannabis? I'd ask him that too. Why can't people enjoy the SAFER?
-newageblues

keep that Kellogg boycott up

those bastards didn't care that he had driven drunk, but they sure didn't care for his using weed. They're poster children for the dangerous hypocrisy of the drug war.
Thanks Kellogg, my cinnamon apple pop-tart addiction is whole grain toast
-newageblues

Terrorists posing as law enforcement

Are actually angry that the medical marijuana farmers are skilled enough to grow giant plants which are perfect for every hemp and wood product. The terrorists are simply keeping people out of jobs.

No more drug war!

How about a war on illiteracy! Ignorance is after all most detrimental to drug addicts and prohibitionists alike. End the drug war and treat Americans honestly & fairly instead of with lies that confuse!!!!!!!!! J. Velasco Brownsville Texas

Oh my...

We(everyone) need to spread the main message, Stopping the drug war. Post on local sites, Spend some $ on distributing the information. We need to first gain more influence in the media. Politicians make the ammunition, The media distributes it, And we use it without common sense shooting at the wrong things. Most of you are taking what he says out of context. Im not a fan of obama *atall* but jesus christ give it a break. Its always a good thing to be friends with the neighbours. What better way? You know a politician is always going to lie. So we need to stop giving our goverment so much power over us. The only way to make this happen is through a physical demonstration of power, like it or not. Untill everyone gets tired of the goverments jacking off on important issues and a revolution becomes realistic, focus on more power to the PEOPLES media, The PEOPLES message, not the bs we are handed down. Lets send a message to the goverment, not the other way around.

Peace out, and happy 420.

Bring it.

Not sure if anyone has brought this up yet but, look at all the times they've upped the drug war in the past. We're still here. Its all just political pillow talk to get the people on the good side again when in reality, I've never not been able to find someone to get some herb from. If they don't realize it in this administration that weed isn't harmful, then we never will and things will probably never get any better or worse, than they are now.

War on Addiction ?

Sounds like the same terrorism as the war against drugs run by the same terrorists. Fuck you war on drugs and war on addiction assholes. Why would people on drugs or anyone at all for that matter benefit from pre-emptive war which is a form of terrorist plunder?

I totally agree

that ALL drugs need to be re-legalized to stop drug war violence; and that we need to stop electing "politicians" and start electing libertarians in order to maintain a free society.

I'm pro-choice on EVERYTHING!

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