Blue Heron in flight

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Marijuana Chronicles

Donna Lambert

"Even if one takes every reefer madness allegation of the prohibitionists at face value, marijuana prohibition has done far more harm to far more people than marijuana ever could."
William F. Buckley, Jr.

San Diego seems to be the site of Custer's last stand for the individuals in county government who object to the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes. Even though the law, Proposition 215, which legalized medical marijuana was passed way back in 1996. Even though the federal government says that it will respect the law passed by a majority of California voters.

The San Diego County District Attorney, Bonnie Dumanis and her underlings like DDA Walters, are doing everything thing they can to obstruct the law and put up any available roadblock they can to thwart its rational implementation. They lost at the SCOTUS but want to keep fighting until the last pain sufferer is left unstanding.

Two unfortunate souls, are caught in their devious web, Donna Lambert and Eugene Davidovich. Lambert goes to trial this afternoon. They both sold marijuana, in legal accordance with the state law, to undercover operatives, who had duly issued medical cards and were feigning illness. The San Diego County DA is in the process of ruining these poor people's lives as collateral damage in their never ending war on pot. They are trying to not allow the submission of any medical defense presentation in court. Both of the aforementioned are medical marijuana patients, Eugene a decorated veteran.

The DA seems to be using the argument that any sales of grass for money are illegal even though Proposition 215 clearly states that legitimate costs for production and distribution can be recouped by collectives and cooperatives. Chris Conrad, an expert who helped draft Proposition 215, has testified that the initiative was followed properly in the defendant's actions in the San Diego cases going to trial. And never mind that every other county in California seems to be having no problem with following the intent and will of the statute.

So they are settling on a piddly subjective matter of minor bookkeeping to keep their draconian drug war alive. I guess it all comes down to what "reasonable" means in the statute. But Dumanis is surely taking the most prohibitive view possible, in my view quite unnecessarily.
Now, as a person who has a medical prescription and has been helped by it through several cancer bouts and heart surgery, I have to ask myself, how the pain suffering little old lady is supposed to procure the drug if not for dispensaries? Who doesn't have access to an illegal source. An elderly person, like a family member of mine with severe M.S. and is paraplegic and can't grow her own? They seem to have little regards for such people. Or would they prefer that drugs get sold by cartels to keep the criminal machine working and their own jobs buzzing along?

I pray that the judge sees their obfuscation and bullying for what it is and spanks the DA. Dumanis is just another lousy politician playing with people's lives. The will of the people is clear. Do our public servants choose to uphold the law only when it suits their own purposes? They need to get on board and create a format for the dispensaries to function legally and responsibly and not answer "that's their problem" like one of the DA's did several months ago when queried how their narrow and deluded take on the law would square with reality. The people have spoken. Is anyone listening?

First postscript: I have been thinking about how unfair the Davidovich and Lambert cases really are. These poor people are in the process of being criminalized when they were only following the guidelines and statutes of a thirteen year old law that had been accepted on its face by every other county in the state. These two victims of an overzealous DA are facing felony jail time after doing everything in a way that they believed to the best of their ability, was dictated by Proposition 215. It's wrong that they are now sacrificial lambs, after being ensnared in this deluded drug war.

Second Postscript: Today, 9/10/09, a day after the county and DEA went on another dispensary raid, Bonnie Dumanis had the audacity to say that she wasn't anti medical marijuana and that people should just grow it. Interesting.  Like everyone is capable or has the land to grow pot, or no fear of having it stolen.  Like people trust the county not to come swooping down in their helicopters during the next purge.  My mother in law in the wheelchair can't grow it - you want to start your own garden, Bonnie, and provide for the folks with M.S.?

You have managed to ensnare so many good people already Ms. D.A., because you disagree with the state law that explicitly states that reasonable costs can be recouped.  I don't trust you and I don't believe you.

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