USA - Cops against drug laws

Discussion in 'Drug Policy Reform & Narco Politics' started by renegades, Feb 15, 2007.

  1. renegades

    renegades Silver Member

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    By ROBERT MARSHALL

    [​IMG]
    How's Nixon's war going? Not Vietnam. The other one. The so-called war on drugs declared by the former U.S. president almost 40 years ago.
    If you talk to the cops, who earn a good, but dangerous living enforcing Canada's drug laws, many admit they're on the losing side. They can make some dents, but that's about it.
    Putting their resources to work, the police spend a bundle playing cat and mouse with dealers. They'll often win and then invite the press to view a pile of seized cash, drugs and firearms. If all goes according to plan, the dealer goes off to jail.
    But that's not the end of it. With obscene profits available, others line up to take over the jailed dealer's turf. They'll fight, even kill, over it. Innocent people become victims. Good people are sucked in. And the drugs keep on flowing leading to other crimes that cost us all.
    In the '60s and '70s a half baggie of marijuana was a good bust. Today multi-kilo seizures of cocaine are not uncommon. Crystal meth and crack are everywhere and easy to get.
    There is a group of cop-types, who call themselves Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP), more than 500 hundred strong, who recognize the reality and the folly.
    Norm Stamper, retired chief of the Seattle Police Service, says the drug war is nonsense, morally harmful and financially wrong.
    Peter Christ, a retired captain from New York state, sees the war more as a policy of prohibition that doesn't work and draws parallels to the booze ban of the '20s and early '30s when gangsters made huge bucks dealing liquor.
    Retired Lt. Jack Cole of the New Jersey State Police, a former undercover officer, says prohibition has given criminals the opportunity to supply drugs and to decide which ones. It's then left to the criminal to say how they'll be produced, how potent they'll be, what age levels they'll sell to and where they're going to sell. "If they decide to sell to 10-year-olds on our playgrounds then that's where they'll be sold."
    LEAP says the only way to solve the drug problem is to remove the criminals' profit, estimated annually to be $400 billion worldwide. And that can only be done by legalizing drugs. By making it a governmental responsibility to regulate, control and most importantly to keep them out of the hands of children.
    LEAP claims if the need to cheat the law is eliminated, then a whole criminal culture goes up in smoke. Such thinking has the support of Edward Ellison, former head of Scotland Yard's anti-drug squad, some judges, other chiefs and officers from around the world, including Canada.
    In Winnipeg, if an addict needing a fix could turn to Health Canada instead of the Hells Angels, violence and crime would plummet. And with a helping agency in charge of the drugs there would at least be hope for curing the addiction. Hardly an easy task, Christ notes, but doable as he points out that 50% of the people who smoked 10 years ago have quit, solely as a result of education.
    Today's enforcement-driven approach has yielded violence, heartbreak and a situation where a child has an easier time finding drugs than alcohol. With that, should Leap's philosophy not form at least part of the discussion as we carry on with Nixon's war?

    Comment -
    Cops realize that it is the drug laws that make them out to be the bad guy in many peoples' eyes. This is sad, because many of them are good people just trying to enforce the laws that the legislature legislated and provide a valuable service like security to the community. If the drug laws did not exist, their job could be focus on the real crime where there is a victim, then they would be look upon as heroes.
     
  2. Riconoen {UGC}

    Riconoen {UGC} Newbie

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    I only hope LEAP grows stronger, they seem to be getting more and more prominent in the media which is a very good thing.
     
  3. El Calico Loco

    El Calico Loco Gold Member

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    I love LEAP. I think they are the only hope for bringing reason and sanity back to the world's drug policy. Average people who won't listen to a dirty hippie for five minutes would listen to these guys.

    I would love to see people respect cops again. I would love to see officers get smiles instead of scowls or suspicious looks.

    May the gods reward each member of LEAP with seventy dark-eyed virgins upon their transcendence. :)


    ECL
     
  4. Triple7

    Triple7 Gold Member

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    There is a cop who changed side and wrote a book or instructions on how users avoid getting caught, how cops work etc. This cop worked in the field for years.. any idea who it is? And where can I find this text?
     
  5. Jigga0o7

    Jigga0o7 Newbie

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    good read sir...
     
  6. grandbaby

    grandbaby Titanium Member

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    According to the original source (Winnipeg Sun, Feb 14th), the author of the article isn't a journalist, but a retired cop of 27 years, and encourages comments at his email address. Yay for LEAP; yay for Robert Marshall.
     
  7. renegades

    renegades Silver Member

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    Column: Cops Against Prohibition

    Police Across The World Wake Up To The Costs Of The War On Drugs

    Gwynne Dyer
    January 11, 2007
    Valley Advocate

    Barry Cooper’s new DVD Never Get Busted Again, which went on sale over the Internet late last month, will probably not sell very well outside the United States, because in most other countries the possession of marijuana for personal use is treated as a misdemeanor or simply ignored by the police. But it will sell very well in the U.S., where many thousands of casual marijuana users are hit with savage jail terms every year in a nationwide game of Russian roulette in which most people indulge their habit unharmed while a few unfortunates have their lives ruined.
    Barry Cooper is a former Texas policeman who made over 800 drug arrests as an anti-narcotics officer, then repented: “When I was raiding homes and destroying families, my conscience was telling me it was wrong, but my need for power, fame and peer acceptance overshadowed my good conscience.” Cooper’s DVD, which teaches people how to avoid arrest for marijuana possession, will also bring him fame and a lot of money, but at least it won’t hurt people.
    However, Cooper lacks the courage of his own convictions. He argues that the war on drugs is futile and counterproductive so far as marijuana is concerned, but nervously insists that he is offering no tips that would help dealers of cocaine or methamphetamines escape “justice.” It’s as if reformers fighting against America’s alcohol prohibition laws in the 1920s had advocated re-legalizing beer but wanted to continue locking up drinkers of wine or spirits. But there are bolder policemen around who are willing to say flatly and publicly that all drug prohibition is wrong.
    One is Jack Cole, 26 years with the New Jersey police, whose organization, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP), represents growing numbers of serving policemen who have lost faith in the “War on Drugs.” “LEAP wants to end drug prohibition just as we ended alcohol prohibition in 1933,” says Cole, who argues that neither kind of prohibition curbed consumption of the banned substances, but that each fuelled the growth of a vast criminal empire.
    Policemen take the lead in these issues because they are the ones who must deal with the calamitous consequences of the War on Drugs. No doubt the use of recreational drugs does a lot of harm, as does the use of alcohol or tobacco, but that harm is dwarfed by the amount of crime and human devastation caused by 40 years of “war” on drug users.
    Howard Roberts, deputy chief constable of the Nottinghamshire police, was the latest senior policeman to make the case for ending the war, pointing out last November that heroin addicts in Britain each commit on average 432 robberies, assaults and burglaries a year to raise money for their illegal habit. Each addict steals about $90,000 worth of property a year, whereas the cost of providing them with heroin from the National Health Service in closely supervised treatment programs would be only $24,000 a year.
    The NHS should provide heroin to addicts on prescription, said Roberts, as it did in the 1950s and '60s, before Britain was pressured into adopting the “war on drugs” model by the U.S. (Since then, the number of heroin addicts in Britain has risen several hundredfold.) The NHS is actually experimenting with a return to that policy at three places in Britain. Switzerland has been prescribing heroin to addicts for some years now, with very encouraging results: crime rate down, addict death rate sharply down.
    If every country legalized all drugs and made the so-called “hard” ones available to addicts free but only on prescription, the result would not just be improved health for drug users and a lower rate of crime, but the collapse of criminal empires built on the international trade in illegal drugs, now estimated to be worth $500 billion a year. That is exactly what happened to the criminal empires founded on bootlegging when alcohol prohibition ended in the U.S. in 1933.
    But what about the innocent children who will be exposed to these drugs if they become freely available? The answer is: nothing that doesn’t happen to them now. There are no cities and few rural areas in the developed world where you cannot buy any illegal drug within half a hour for an amount of money that can be raised by any enterprising 14-year-old.
    Indeed, the supply of really nasty drugs would probably diminish if prohibition ended, because they are mainly a response to the level of risk the dealers must face. Economist Milton Friedman called it the Iron Law of Prohibition: the harder the police crack down on a substance, the more concentrated that substance becomes, so cocaine gives way to crack cocaine, as beer gave way to moonshine under alcohol prohibition.
    This is probably yet another false dawn, for even the politicians who know what needs to be done are too afraid of the gutter media to act on their convictions. But sometime in the next 50 years, after only a few more tens of millions of needless deaths, drug prohibition will end.
    Gwynne Dyer is a London-based independent journalist whose articles are published in 45 countries.

    ***The main problem with this DVD is that Barry Cooper says if you have drugs in your car, hide them well, and always give the police the consent to seach, because according to Barry they'll bring to dogs out to find it and that just pisses off the cops having to make a 2 hr arrest.
    Swim says never give a cop the consent to search. Make him call out a dog if one is available. 50/50 chance he will just let you go. A fair chance the dog won't smell it. So your odds are over 50% nothing will happen. However if you did tell him, he will take you to jail. So I do not quite understand Barry's logic.
     
  8. Triple7

    Triple7 Gold Member

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    Thanks, I think this was what I was looking for.

    Well.. he is a cop, no need to understand!! Haha.. just kidding. That 2h arrest is a bad motivation from Barry, it is just a sign of a bad cop, they should be prepared to take real offence.. like spitting onto their face and such.

    Thanks for this input. =)