How the marijuana war is killing people
New York City Police officer Richard Haste is about to go on trial for the shooting of Ramarley Graham. Haste had suspected Graham was a drug seller. Graham went back into his apartment. Haste had followed him to his bathroom.
It seems Graham was about to dump the marijuana he had in his toilet. Haste shot Graham as Graham went to take the marijuana out of his waistband to flush it. Haste stated that he believed Graham was reaching for a weapon.
Now, the obvious thing that is being ignored in the media, this action would not have happened without marijuana being illegal. Graham had no other illegal drugs. The only drug he was possibly selling was marijuana, a drug less harmful than alcohol. He is not the first and will not be the only person killed in our war on marijuana. There are no reported cases of death by marijuana, other than through the acts of it being illegal.
Indeed, in Mexico during a 4 year period from the end of 2006 to 2010, there were an estimated 35,000 people killed in the war on drugs in that nation. Not all from marijuana operations but since marijuana is about 1/2 of all the profits generated by Mexican drug cartels, many of those deaths are the direct product of this war on marijuana.
The fact is, this war on marijuana is even leading to the arrest of pro-marijuana legalization. Pro-legalization activists are being arrested or cited for gathering petitions for legalization. Such as a case out of Missouri where St. Charles City police issued citations to two people for "soliciting without a permit." In fact, the cops confiscated some of the petitions they had gathered. The Freedom Center of Missouri got these illegal and unconstitutional violations thrown out.
In Florida, pro-marijuana legalization activst, C.D. Flash, was arrested for gathering petitions in Miami Beach. He was wrongly told he needed a permit to exercise his First Amendment rights. When he told the police that they were wrong, which they were of course, he was arrested for disorderly conduct. This is quite common, when police don't have a leg to stand on, they use the vague offense of disorderly conduct. Standing up for your constitutional rights to the government (which the police are) is not a reason to be arrested.
Flash was jailed for 24 hours. After the charges were dismissed, Flash sued and was later awarded damages for this illegal arrest. The fact is, the arresting officers probably didn't agree with Mr. Flash's views so they abused their authority to make an illegal arrest. Police commonly harrass and intimidate protestors and activists to give up their constitutional rights. If this was their intention, they should have been immediately fired. I am sure that did not happen of course.