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Special 4:20 Cafe on La Onda Bajita: Vote Yes on Prop 19!
by Legalize Marijuana
Wednesday Sep 22nd, 2010 1:41 PM
During a special edition of La Onda Bajita on KPFA, the radio crew and Omar Figueroa, a constitutional & criminal defense lawyer based in Sebastopol, CA, discuss why you should vote yes on proposition 19.
Audio: 57:11

Topics discussed include:

Racial discrimination under marijuana prohibition
WAMM, The Wo/Men's Alliance for Medical Marijuana, and the importance of direction action
Proposition 215 and Senate Bill 420
Why you should vote yes on proposition 19
What will happen if prop 19 does not pass
What will happen when prop 19 passes
What will not happen when prop 19 passes
Implications for the rest of the country, Mexico and the world
Vote against Steve Cooley running for Attorney General because he will launch a statewide attack on medical marijuana
The Broadus (Snoop Dogg) Effect
Importance of hemp and growing it again in the united states
The stigma around marijuana usage and people "coming out of the closet"
The price of cannabis
Ganja tourism and it's benefits for local businesses and the economy
Increased demand for cannabis
by Legalize Marijuana Wednesday Sep 22nd, 2010 1:41 PM

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by Common sense letter from L.E.A.P.
Thursday Sep 23rd, 2010 3:20 PM
Every now and then a legal proposition comes along that can draw together people usually at odds. In this case, Prop. 19 has advocates in law enforcement and also among marijuanna (cannabis) advocates (recreational and medicinal). The shared goals of reduced incarcerations for non-violent cannabis offenses would save police and taxpayers both money and time by keeping prisons open for violent offenders only. Currently non-violent cannabis users take up way too much room in public prisons, and this wastes taxpayer resources when most non-violent cannabis users would be better off living free and independent on the outside. By significantly reducing the prison population, CA now has some chance to pull out of the worsening recession.

By allowing people to grow and purchase cannabis legally in the state of CA, Prop. 19 would also prevent the growth of illegal drug cartels that currently profit from cannabis prohibition. Similar to the organized criminal gangs of bootleggers during the alcohol prohibition of the 1920's, modern day drug cartels engage in murder and extortion to ensure their monopoly on the illegal drug trade. By legalizing cannabis, this will be one less drug that the cartels can use for their blood money. Passing Prop. 19 would significantly remove the cash flow to the cartels by enabling local growers to legally operate without fears of police raids. The profits made by legal cannabis growers would be taxed by the state, which would use this revenue for (hopefully) some positive health related purposes.

Here is the letter from LEAP (Law Enforcement Against Prohibition) asking CA voters to support Prop. 19;

"To the Voters of California:

As police officers, judges, prosecutors, corrections officials and others who have labored to enforce the laws that seek to prohibit cannabis (marijuana) use, and who have witnessed the abysmal failure of this current criminalization approach, we stand together in calling for new laws that will effectively control and tax cannabis.

As criminal justice professionals, we have seen with our own eyes that keeping cannabis illegal damages public safety -- for cannabis consumers and non-consumers alike. We’ve also seen that prohibition sometimes has tragic consequences for the law enforcers charged with putting their lives on the line to enforce it. The only groups that benefit from continuing to keep marijuana illegal are the violent gangs and cartels that control its distribution and reap immense profits from it through the black market.

If California's voters make the sensible decision to effectively control and tax cannabis this November, it will eliminate illegal marijuana distribution networks, just as ending alcohol prohibition put a stop to violent and corrupting gangsters' control of beer, wine and liquor sales.

As law enforcement professionals, we especially want voters to understand that legalization will allow us to do our jobs more effectively and safely. In 2008, there were over 60,000 arrests for simple misdemeanor cannabis possession in California, yet nearly 60,000 violent crimes went unsolved in our state that same year. When we change our cannabis laws, police officers will no longer have to waste time on low-level cannabis arrests; we'll be able to focus on protecting the public from murderers, rapists, drunk drivers and burglars. Cannabis cases will no longer clog up court dockets. And room in our costly, overflowing prisons will be freed up when we stop locking people up just because they tested positive for cannabis while on probation.

Because of all the overhead and administrative savings that legalization will generate, our criminal justice apparatus will have more resources to keep more good law enforcers employed serving the public in this time of fiscal turmoil. Ending prohibition will also put a stop to other crimes and problems caused by the illegal marijuana market, such as robberies, gang warfare, gun-running and house fires caused by underground grow operations.

Controlling marijuana through a regulated system will also reduce its availability to kids. Right now, illegal dealers have no incentive to check IDs or avoid selling to juveniles, given that the market is illegal for everyone. But under adult legalization, licensed cannabis businesses will face penalties and consequences that will effectively deter underage sales. Indeed, a recent study from Columbia University shows that teens currently find it easier to purchase illegal marijuana than age-regulated alcohol.

And, because marijuana is illegal and unregulated, its producers aren’t required to do any quality control or safety evaluation, and sometimes it is adulterated with other drugs or harmful chemicals. While law enforcers understand that every drug has the potential for abuse, making cannabis illegal has made it much more dangerous than it otherwise would be under effective regulation.

Please join us in supporting the sensible solution to California’s failed cannabis policies. Let’s vote to control and tax cannabis this November – for safety’s sake.


MacKenzie Allen Former Deputy Sheriff, Los Angeles Sheriff's Dept. Deputy Sheriff, King County Sheriff's Dept. (Ret.)

James Anthony Former Community Prosecutor, Oakland City Attorney's Office

L. Lawrence Baird Former Senior Reserve Park Ranger, Orange County

William Baldwin Correctional Officer, California Department of Corrections (Ret.)

Nate Bradley Former Officer, Wheatland Police Department Former Deputy, Sutter County Sheriff's Office

Walter Clark Deputy District Attorney, County of Riverside District Attorney's Office (Ret.)

Stephen Cobine Captain, Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office (Ret.)

William John Cox Former Officer, El Cajon Police Department Former Sergeant, Los Angeles Police Department Former Deputy, Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office Retired Supervising Trial Counsel, State Bar of California

Bill Dake Former Officer, San Francisco Police Department

David Doddridge Narcotics Officer, Los Angeles Police Department (Ret.)

Stephen Downing Deputy Chief, Los Angeles Police Department (Ret.)

Rick Erickson Officer, Lakeport Police Department (Ret.)

Paul Gallegos District Attorney, County of Humboldt

Dr. Nina Graves Former Military Police, Santa Barbara

James Gray Judge, Superior Court of Orange County (Ret.)

Terence Hallinan Former San Francisco District Attorney

Russ Jones Former Narcotics Detective, San Jose Police Department, DEA Task Force

Kyle Kazan Former Officer, Torrance Police Department

Leo E. Laurence Former Biker Enforcement Task Force Member, San Diego District Attorney's Office Former Deputy Sheriff, Missouri

Madeline Martinez Correctional Peace Officer (Ret.), State of California Department of Corrections

Danny Maynard Former Yolo County Sheriff’s Office Former Sacramento Port Police Department

Walter McKay Former Senior Police Specialist, Police Assessment Resources Center, Los Angeles, CA Former Detective, Vancouver Police Department

Joseph McNamara Chief of Police, San Jose Police Department (Ret.)

Joe Miller Deputy Probation Officer, Mohave County Probation Department Police Officer, Needles Police Department (Ret.)

John O'Brien Sheriff, Genesee County, MI (Ret.) University of Phoenix, Southern California campus

John A. Russo Oakland City Attorney

David Sinclair Former Deputy Sheriff, Contra Costa County Office of the Sheriff

Mike Schmier Former Deputy District Attorney for Los Angeles Former Administrative Law Judge California State Former Federal Labor Prosecutor San Francisco

Jeffrey Schwartz Senior Deputy District Attorney, Humboldt County (Ret.)

Lyle Smith Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department (Ret.)

Norm Stamper Executive Assistant Chief of Police, San Diego Police Department (Ret.) Chief of Police, Seattle Police Department (Ret.)

Jeff Studdard Former Reserve Deputy Sheriff, Los Angeles County

All agency affiliations are listed for identification purposes only."

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