(Always glad to see diaries and posts from WLJ. Please post more! – promoted by ClubTwitty)
Many of you know how I feel about pot and America’s war on drugs, but what you may not know is I am about to dedicate my life to ending this attack on America’s communities of color and those without resources to fight the hypocrisy.
Where do I begin? In a nutshell….
America’s drug policies are 100% based on racist issues. Cocaine became illegal after reports that it made Black men “crazy” and they would rape White women.
In 1910 Dr. Hamilton Wright, considered by some the father of U.S. anti-narcotics laws, reported that U.S. contractors were giving cocaine to their Black employees to get more work out of them. A few years later, stories began to proliferate about “cocaine-crazed Negroes” in the South who had run amuck. The New York Times published a story that alleged “most of the attacks upon white women of the South are the direct result of the ‘cocaine-crazed’ Negro brain.” Some southern police departments switched to .38 caliber revolvers, because they thought cocaine made Blacks impervious to .32 caliber bullets.
Pot became illegal when reports of Mexican and Chinese workers smoked pot and “induced violence against Americans”.
During the Great Depression, the 1937 Marijuana Tax Act came into law, again using racism as its chief selling point. The same Mexicans, who were vying with out of work Americans for the few agricultural jobs available, it was said, engaged in marijuana induced violence against Americans.
So, fast forward to 2009.
Privatized Prisons. America’s new slave labor.
What does this have to do with our drug laws – plenty. In all capitalist ventures you need, demand, supply and access to product. When you create a prison system for profit how do you ensure the success of that industry? You create a supply chain to hold up the demand for larger prison contracts. How do you fill the prisons with product? Create an entire population of inmates from one sector of society. In this case, people of color.
Case in Point, Tulia, Texas which was profiled on 60 minutes is just one example.
(CBS) Tulia, Texas is the site of what’s been called one of the worst miscarriages of justice in recent memory.
It’s where an undercover narcotics officer named Tom Coleman arrested 46 people – nearly all of them black – on charges of being cocaine or marijuana dealers, sending many of them to prison for a total of 750 years.
As Correspondent Ed Bradley first reported last September, they were pardoned by Texas Gov. Rick Perry, after a judge accused Coleman of being a liar, thief and racist. http://www.cbsnews.com/stories…
Before some of you claim that people of color use more drugs, let’s get real for a minute.
Marijuana sales are estimated to be as high as $113 Billion dollars annually in the US. Alcohol sales are $130 Billion. As much pot as alcohol is sold every year.
This number would require 40 million people to spend an average of $55 a week on weed. This is not happening in the “hood”. California NORML’s estimates are in that ballpark. In 2003, the group figured that if 600,000 to 700,000 people in the state smoke two cigarette-size joints every day and 1 million smoke one joint every 10 days.
Marijuana is being bought by business people, housewives, college students and apparently, everyone else.
So, why are the drug laws putting so many people of color in jail and not white businessmen and housewives? Because the drug policies in this country are horribly racist and privatized prisons need slave labor. Supply and demand, basic economics. Why else would a nation spend billions of dollars on failed program?
The direct cost of the War on Drugs is something like 40 or 50 billion dollars per year. And still every year illegal drug sales increase.
Why would we do this? Our nation has been built on the concept of cheap labor. Get mad, but before you respond to this atrocity, look it up the facts on the web. There are 1000s of stories from every news source.
I have been very active for over 15 years in the drug battle. We fought in Los Angeles when overcrowding of LA County jail caused law enforcement to release violent criminals early to make room for drug arrests. Yes, we let out rapist early to lock up Black and Brown boys for smoking pot.
We have created a ridiculous drug atmosphere in this country. Women will talk openly about their use of Valium or Xanax, but God forbid we admit to the fact we smoke a joint at night to relax.
I find it funny that people are impressed about my knowledge of fine rums from around world, but find it curious that I have the same knowledge of pot strains.
It is time for smart people to change this attitude. There are no issues with pot. Plain and simple.
If as a nation we are ok with alcohol and cigarettes, which cause hundreds of thousands of deaths per year, why are we scared to admit that we smoke pot as much as we drink beer? And the kicker to this is NOT ONE POT RELATED DEATH EVER!!!
Scott and I will become more involved in this issue and this industry. We can not sit back and watch young people of color have their lives ruined over smoking a joint, or having veterans thrown out of their federally subsidized homes for smoking pot for pain relief.
In the Post this morning, a disabled man has been tossed out of Federal housing for smoking pot for pain. I guess he should have taken OxyContin, Big Pharma and the Feds are OK with that drug.
Wake up call. America the battle is on, and it will be televised, blogged, and reported by pot heads like me. You know, the college grad, military officer, corporate executive, business owner and political consultant types.