View Full Version : What's worse, a bong or a gun?
Right now I'm watching closely a drug-law reform movement in Washington state; it's an interestingly bland approach, but a step in an okay direction.
But I can at least preface the current topic with a note about local law and "head shops". As the law stands in Seattle, Washington, city police officers have an interesting power. They can observe you coming from a tobacconist, stop and search you, and decide for you what you are going to do with your purchases. Upon determining that you have purchased an item for illegal use, they can then fine the store a large sum, and even close it. The only "probable cause" justifying this search is that you have exited a store. On this note, I would like to join the academy, get my badge, and park the paddy wagon outside the local Safeway. Any parents who did their family grocery shopping in the presence of their children, I would search for alcohol. Upon determining that this person bought alcohol while in the presence of their children, I will fine the Safeway for contributing to the delinquency of a minor. That is, essentially, what is taking place.
The link below regards recent actions taken against smoke shops in Iowa. I think it's hilarious that, as the article notes, one can be charged under RICO for selling bongs. After all, I work for an insurance company, which has little or no obligation to represent itself properly, or even conduct its business according to any real standards. I mean, government regulation aside .... Well, consider that my company will send lobbyists to argue, say, for mandatory insurance. When that law is passed, the companies must include as many people as possible, which sends underwriting discipline to hell; suddenly, you're loaded up with bad risks. So you appeal to the state to let you raise your rates. What is the justification? That you, as the company, are required to cover these people.
It's the same degree of snow job, at least. Here we're talking about spending 10 to 12 years in prison for the federal crime of selling an ornate glass tube that one can suck smoke through. Come on! At my company, the #1 danger to your home is included on your policy, but the #2 is ommitted. (Fire is covered; in California, you have to buy extra insurance against earthquakes; in Florida, Georgia, and other storm-prone localities, your hurricane coverage is extra--and, in those jurisdictions, a tornado isn't a hurricane, and thus isn't covered unless you get a broad, expensive, natural-disaster policy.
What I'm getting at is that even in a service department of an insurance company, I would have to plead guilty to Accessory to Fraud, should the government ever become so levelheaded.
* Why is selling a bong illegal?
* Why do legal standards exist in the drug war that exist nowhere else?
* Why do perceptual standards exist regarding the drug war that are so wholly unique? Why does "common-sense" as regards much of American law not manifest itself within the drug war?
* What interest has the fed in a business that the local community finds acceptable?
Simply, I find the fed's actions inappropriate. Remember that for the next 10 to 12 years, there might be two people taking up bedspace that should go to the next Sammy Gravano or John Gotti. Remember folks that this drug war is what we're paying our taxes for. And that $1.3 billion package to Colombia sounds like a really good idea, too, doesn't it? (Since the Peruvian operations are, predictably, stepping up nicely.)
Unlike many state and local paraphernalia statutes, which allow for a subjective, contextual interpretation of whether a given object is indeed drug paraphernalia -- sometimes a spoon is only a spoon -- federal law is black and white: Possession of a bong is a federal offense, and so, of course, is sale or manufacture of a bong, or conspiracy to do so. It can get you three years in federal prison. And it doesn't matter if the bong has never been used or if it is a jewel-encrusted work of art; a bong is a crime.
Wow ... I'm a federal criminal.
I believe it is time to go home and strike up some civil disobedience.
... with Liberty and Justice for all ...
03-02-01, 05:53 PM
This country is in dire need of a wake-up call.
And it will come soon.
03-06-01, 03:01 PM
up with hope and down with dope...so they say. And everyone of us knows who "they" are.
I'm sorry for feeling the way I do on the interesting subject that tiassa poses to us. But then again I suppose I have no choice.
Bongs and what goes into them have been given an unfair mock trial by officials of the us gov't because they feel that it is what the majority of the us citizens want to hear. However, now that more and more people are beginning to realize the price of their secret recreational activities in the eyes of the law, the whole topic is being put under strong light again. Only now that the gov't. has labeled the use of these items as hazardous, addictive, and all around bad for you, they can't very well go back and swallow their words. Believe me, if they could, the officials of this country would charge you for the weed you smoke on a daily basis thereby getting their little piece. But what's said is said and can't be unsaid.
There's also the whole McCaffrey thing. The "drug czar" as he is known to some not only is greatly against all drugs, he's also the creator and big beneficiary to any funds gathered by the infamous "piss test" you dread at work. Isn't that a little curious? Now he's attempting to have hemp of all things made illegal because traces of hempseed oil in the food you innocently eat can make his milliondollar tests void in the eyes of the law. So, this man is attempting to illegalize hemp, a cash crop that would thrive in the US environment and make all of us lots and lots of money, because it interferes with the effectiveness of his test and therefore interferes with him making mad dough.
The truth is the gov't. placed marijuana in the class 4 category because they really didn't know what to do with it. It was a drug that people were spending mad money on and they weren't getting any so it had to be bad somewhere in there. The strange part is, class 4 drugs have: a) NO medical use b)are NEVER safe to use; even when a doctor dude is around and c)are too addictive for our poor little irresponsible selves. They're also more dangerous than cocaine and heroin (both class 3, I believe) for the simple fact that those two have some type of medicinal qualities.
Keep in mind that while the police are trying to trick you into an unlawful involuntary search of your property they COULD be out getting the real bad stuff and people like crackheads and their dealers...
Now, think about alcohol, and don't trip on me because I like liquor just as much as the next gal. It is addictive, it has zero medical use, and I don't see why any doctor in his right mind would tell you to destroy your liver for any reason. MY question is how come alcohol is legal and not weed? Ooooooh, yeah! The gov't already tried to make it illegal but no one listened. Now it's legal again (after they ate their words) AND they're getting a piece of it...hmmm... I've never liked politics. But then I've never liked selfish, deceitful government figureheads or the corruption they call "government" either.
08-11-01, 02:42 AM
The biggest thing about if the government did eat their words and legalized it, is that while yes they could make some money, they wouldn't make enough to make it worth their while. It's way too easy to grow, on your own for next to know cost. It's much harder to make your own cigarettes from scratch, or brew your own beer. Granted neither of these are impossible, but weed is definetly easier to take from raw plant to a nice night in the supermarket.
<i>"I believe it is time to go home and strike up some civil disobedience."</i>
Hmm, when I was in school, I could buy anything: Smoke, speed, LSD... This is where a parent finds his fear regarding drugs. This is where the drug war gains its strength. The image painted is that dopers push drugs on children. Become the defender of children and the war will lose its momentum. You really need to clear your heads and get organized. Change the image, and show the damage caused by the war.
Just an added thought:
I do think it's a crime when children are presented with the opportunity to use drugs. Hell, the animal who sells potential danger to children should be dealt with severely. I would hope that there are many responsible users who feel the same.
Have you seen the movie <i>traffic</i>? It's very good.
08-14-01, 06:55 PM
THE MISUNDERSTANDING OF LIFE.
IT IS SIMPLY DEFINED AS ONE WHO FORESAKES HIS/HER DESTINY FOR THE SAKE OF A MINOR OR PRIMAL URGE, SUCH AS GETTING HIGH. WE COME TO UNDERSTAND THE WEAKNESS OF THE SOUL, IN THE SAME WAY SOME HAVE COME TO THE SCIENTIFIC CONCLUSION OF THE PARAMETERS OF THE HUMAN DNA.
THOUGH MANY WHO FALL INTO THE ABYSS OF MARAJAUNA SEEM TO EXHAULT THE SAME COMMENTS OF EXCTASY, WE FIND IN ALL THE SAME WEAKNESS, THE SAME POWERLESS VOID, THE SAME EMPTY PERSPECTIVES. ALL SOMEHOW VAILED IN THE ASPIRATIONS FOR A SPIRITUAL AWAKENING.
YOUR PATHS ALL SEEM TO END IN THE SAME TRASH BEN. CRUSHED AND DEFORMED, CRYING OUT TO ME, DESIRING SANCUARY FOR YOUR TRANSGRESSIONS. MY EARS GROW TIRED OF YOUR TEARS OF SELF-ENFLICTED PAIN AND TRAUMA. FROM WHAT WERE YOU CREATED, TO WHERE DO YOU RETURN? SIMPLY KNOW THIS, IN ALL WHO HAVE READ THIS EXIST A GIFT, IT RESIDES IN THE DESTINY THAT I GAVE YOU AT BIRTH. TO FORESAKE THAT GIFT, IS TO REFUSE ME, AND TO REFUSE ME IS TO BE TOTALLY WITHOUT ME. AS THE EAGLE IS MADE TO SOAR ABOVE THE CLOADS, AND THE LION IS MADE TO RULE AMOUNG BEAST, YOU MUST ALSO ACCEPT YOUR DESTINY. FOR WHAT WOULD BECOME OF THE EAGLE THAT FORESAKED HIS FLIGHT AND WALKED AMIDST THE BEAST ON THE GROUND? AND WHAT WOULD BECOME OF THE LION THAT FOOLISHLY JUMPED OFF A CLIFF IN AN ATTEMPT TO FLY LIKE AN EAGLE?
THE ANSWER TO THIS QUESTION RESIDES WITHIN YOU, AND YOUR ROLE AND THE GREATNESS OF YOUR DESTINY AWAITS.
IN THIS MOMENT, DO NOT THINK OF THE ORIGIN OF THESE WORDS. TAKE THIS MOMENT TO UNDERSTAND THAT YOU ARE READING THIS MESSAGE AND WIEGH THE FACT THAT WHAT HAS TRANSPIRED IN YOUR LIFE TO BRING THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THESE WORDS TO BARE.
08-15-01, 01:29 AM
Before you can come on here to preach to anyone who has tried pot, anyone who currently smokes it or anyone who ever will, there are some things you must first consider.
1) No where on this thread or any other that I've read, have I ever heard anyone say that pot has messed up thier lives. Any damage done through pot is normally through the over reaction of family members.
2) You seem to be coming from a religious standpoint in your post, judging by the nick and the faintly holier than thou attitude, here's a few things to think about. There are receptors in the human brain (made by God) that only respond to THC, the active chemical ingredient in marijuana. Which therefore implies that, a) god wants us to use THC in some form, albeit that smoking isn't quite perfect, but it's only useful in our brains. b) if it's not useful in our brains, then there is a useless part of out brain, being that THC is only found in marijuana.
3) you open your post by talking about forsaking our destiny, thereby implying that everything that we do is predestined by god, and if that is the case then god wants us to smoke pot, by the simple definition of predestination.
further through your post, you say that "the answer to the question resides in you" well if our destiny is already written by god, then how is it possible to have the free will to decide.
--If it is god's will, do not worry it will be done; if it isn't, do not pray for it will never occur. -unknown
--think before you post -Pzzaboy
It's not that I'm ignoring the rest of your words, sir, for you'll find me in agreement with many of them. (Not all, but ...) However, I wanted to pose a question to you:
Change the image, and show the damage caused by the war.Paz (murdered by LAPD); Dorismond (murdered by NYPD); Diallo (murdered by NYPD); Ramparts Scandal (police corruption); Tulia, Texas (a flat-out tragedy); Esquivel Hernandez (murdered by USMC); New Jersey profiling (91,000+ pages admitting racist law enforcement); Giuliani (suspension of constitutional rights in NYC); Minneapolis/St Paul (police fraud); DARE (not only lies, but having the effect of making children more likely to use drugs); prison numbers; carrier-weight laws; automatic convictions (endangered by Apprendi ruling) ....
The question, sir, is: What have I been doing, if not trying to show the damage caused by the war?
What do organizations like CSDP.org (Common-Sense Drug Policy), DRCNet.org (Drug Reform Coordination Network), november.org (November Coalition), mpp.org (Marijuana Policy Project) do, if not demonstrate the damage caused by the Drug War and offer alternative solutions?
If we protest in the streets, we're apparently being either annoying or dangerous. If we protest in art, we're not taking the issue seriously. Geez, man, I'm not going to pick up a gun over this: why give the cops an actual reason to shoot me? (Just because the police get away with murder doesn't make it the right solution for the advocates of legalization to start killing people in return.) You know, in some cities, you're safer if you have drugs on you when you are harassed by the cops. Why? They want to throw you in jail, instead of shooting you for being annoyed with their unnecessary harassment when they find out you don't have drugs on you.
What have we, the advocates of drug legalization, been doing, if not trying to show the damage?
I hate beating a dead horse so to speak ... But even more I detest gross exaggeration and/or intentional lying to bolster a personal agenda.
Esquivel Hernandez (murdered by USMC); We've been over this ground before (Chinese Drug War thread, World Affairs & Politics forum) so I'll make it short and sweet:
Esquivel Hernandez was killed by a United States Marine on drug recon along the Mexican/American border when the Marine returned fire after having been fired on!
It was not 'murder' in any sense of the word.
Therein lies the problem of sending the USMC to do this job: no evidence that they were fired on, except the words of a shooter facing a murder charge, and no expectation of any citizens to be seeing law enforcement camped down like that. What you're now saying is that shepherds have the obligation to let a coyote take sheep, so that they can be sure it's not the USMC stalking them. Maybe in another country this is acceptable, but you have yet to establish what the USMC is doing patrolling its own people inside its own borders.
I have seen no report that states Hernandez fired at the USMC.
No cause to shoot: murder.
I know killing people is more important to you than the dead themselves (as you established in the Chinese Drug War thread, so what credibility should we give your opinion in this case? About zero is what it's worth, and about zero is what it gets.
When the Marine Corps wants to murder civilians, they're supposed to go to other countries and kill the civilians there. :rolleyes:
09-24-01, 06:58 PM
Originally posted by OMNIGOD1
THE MISUNDERSTANDING OF LIFE.
IT IS SIMPLY DEFINED AS ONE WHO FORESAKES HIS/HER DESTINY FOR THE SAKE OF A MINOR OR PRIMAL URGE, Bla bla bla bla bla
No more drugs for you mate :D
(not meaning to nitpick, but you got some typos in there my lord)
10-13-01, 07:22 PM
WASHINGTON, DC:In a surprise announcement with wide-ranging implications for U.S. narcotics policy, Drug Enforcement Administration director Thomas Constantine acknowledged Monday that some winners "may occasionally" use drugs.
DEA head Thomas Constantine, testifying before Congress.
"Apparently," said Constantine, addressing reporters at Justice Department headquarters, "contrary to the DEA's long-standing conviction, drug use may not be limited solely to the domain of losers. It appears that some successful Americans have experimented with illegal narcotics, as well."
The announcement was the result of a comprehensive three-year DEA study of more than 40,000 U.S. winners, including thousands of successful business executives, doctors, lawyers, scientists and civic leaders. The study, originally designed by the DEA to help shed light on the qualities shared by winners that make them resistant to drugs, instead revealed that over 71 percent of winners had at one time or another experimented with controlled substances.
Constantine said that it remains unclear why winners, who enjoy successful, productive careers and feelings of love and acceptance from their families, would choose to engage in drug use.
"Time and time again, DEA tests have shown that no feeling you could get from drugs could be better than the great feeling you get from being a winner," Constantine said. "Why a heart surgeon, an architect or a straight-A student would use drugs when his senses are already enormously heightened by the 'high' that comes from being a winner is beyond me."
Making drug use by winners all the more puzzling, Constantine said, is the fact that winners are more than strong enough to resist the peer pressure associated with drug use, do not need to get high to escape from a terrible life, and do not associate with the sort of people most likely to use drugs—namely, losers.
DEA scientists said it also remains unclear how drug-using winners have managed to avoid addiction and the many well-known destructive side-effects of controlled substances.
"Winners seem to have an unknown quality that enables them to use drugs and keep on winning," DEA head researcher and narcotics expert Howard Tobin said. "It goes against everything we know about drugs, but many of the drug-taking winners we studied did not, in fact, become losers. They did not lose control of their lives, nor did they lose their loved ones, their jobs, their homes, or their physical or mental well-being. There is clearly something at work here that we still do not understand."
Tobin cited the five-time Super Bowl champion Dallas Cowboys as a good example of winners who achieved greatness while engaging in frequent recreational drug use.
"In 1993 and 1994, the Cowboys clearly were winners, trouncing the Buffalo Bills—a team with no drug-users on its roster, mind you—in two straight Super Bowls by a combined score of 82 to 30," Tobin said. "It's puzzling, to say the least."
One winner, Cupertino, CA, neurosurgeon Richard Frankel, a devoted family man and casual marijuana smoker, said that the DEA should not necessarily be surprised. "I find that a little pot every now and then really helps me relax," he said. "When you consider that marijuana is less addictive and less harmful than both nicotine and alcohol, it shouldn't be all that surprising that I, like so many of my esteemed and accomplished colleagues, choose to smoke up occasionally."
As a result of the study, the DEA has been forced to change many of its anti-drug awareness campaigns. On Tuesday, the agency ordered the recall of more than 150,000 U.S. video arcade games displaying anti-drug messages, including 27,000 Mortal Kombat II and N.A.R.C. units, which will be reprogrammed with an altered on-screen message from former FBI director William Sessions, "Very Few Winners Use Drugs."
While I sympathize with Tiassa's comparison, there is an apples/oranges quality to it. The intended use of the bong is illegal, where it is illegal, but the gun can have legal uses. If you want the bong for some other use, such as for a paper weight, other products fit the bill better.
02-15-10, 10:32 PM
Tiassa, my partner works for an insurance company and she HATES the US insurance industry because it has given insurance such a bad reputation that it reflects back on the companies here. For instance in her companies home policy "storm surge" is excluded because of the cost to include it in the reinsurance policy. However rather using these sort of exemptions to get out of paying claims the company does the exact oposite, ie storm damage is covered there for as the storm surge is the result of a storm it is there for storm damage and there for covered.
The same with huricanes, they might be an exemption in the policy but hey they are a storm and storms are covered there for so are they.
Tiassa- I think you need to narrow down the illegal drug you're talking about which I believe is marijuana. And in that regard, I agree with you and your sentiment: marijuana should be legal, period.
My personal beliefs are simple: every drug should be legal in its natural form. This means marijuana is legal and so are coca leaves. (Want to be a cokehead- it takes an acre of coca plants to make an ounce of cocaine... good luck on your 100 acre farm.)
This also means shit like LSD, acid and all those other labratorically-made drugs are illegal- they don't exist in nature.
Regarding the legalization of marijuana, it's only a few years away; it's inevitable. You're rooting a cause well on its way in the right direction.
02-16-10, 01:23 AM
AB390 would allow possession, sale and cultivation of marijuana for people over 21, and impose a $50-per-ounce sales tax, much like taxes on tobacco and alcohol. The California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control would be responsible for regulation.
Which is worse? Depends on how much damage each does, I expect.