dea marijuana eradication
Ending Marijuana Prohibition

Members Of Congress Want To Reallocate DEA Funds Towards Preventing Domestic Violence And Child Abuse

dea marijuana eradication
(image via wikipedia)

The DEA has been trying to eradicate marijuana plants across the country for a long time, without success. I live in Oregon, which voted to legalize marijuana in 2014. Yet, despite marijuana’s current legal status in Oregon, the DEA still spends tax payer dollars eradicating marijuana plants, up to $60 per plant. That is an obvious waste of tax money that could be going towards better things, which is something that 12 members of Congress agree with. Per the Washington Post:

Unfortunately for the DEA, the year isn’t over yet. Last week, a group of 12 House members led by Ted Lieu (D) of California wrote to House leadership to push for a provision in the upcoming spending bill that would strip half of the funds away from the DEA’s Cannabis Eradication Program and put that money toward programs that “play a far more useful role in promoting the safety and economic prosperity of the American people”: domestic violence prevention and overall spending reduction efforts.

Each year, the DEA spends about $18 million in efforts with state and local authorities to pull up marijuana plants being grown indoors and outdoors. The program has been plagued by scandal and controversy in recent years. In the mid-2000s, it became clear that the overwhelming majority of “marijuana” plants netted by the program were actually “ditchweed,” or the wild, non-cultivated, non-psychoactive cousin of the marijuana that people smoke.

Below is an excerpt from the letter that was sent to House leadership:

Throughout the country, states are increasingly turning away from marijuana prohibition and enacting alternative policies to lower crime rates, free up limited law enforcement resources, and keep drugs out of the hands of children. To date, four states have legalized recreational marijuana, and 23 states now allow marijuana for medical use. There has also been a great deal of movement on the science behind marijuana, and consequently, the marijuana policy landscape in Congress has shifted to more closely match the needs of the states we represent.

We write to you concerning House Amendment 296 to H.R. 2578, the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2016. This commonsense amendment targeted $9 million dollars in the Domestic Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Program in the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) budget and redistributed it to three accounts that play a far more useful role in promoting the safety and economic prosperity of the American people: the Violence Against Women Act Youth-Oriented Program, the Victims of Child Abuse program, and the Spending Reduction Account. This amendment passed on voice vote without any opposition from either party. We urge you to include the substance of this amendment in any upcoming spending legislation, whether though a continuing resolution or an omnibus spending bill.

I would LOVE to hear why anyone would oppose this shift in resources away from a program that doesn’t work, towards ones that saves tax payers money and helps prevent domestic violence and child abuse. I would go even further and ask why Congress doesn’t reallocate the entire 18 million, instead of just 9 million? Regardless of which political party someone associates with, this is a very smart move that everyone should support.

  • saynotohypocrisy

    The war on cannabis users is faith based. Its supporters can’t be reasoned with.

    • “Truth never triumphs — its opponents just die out. Thus, Science advances one funeral at a time” Max Planck

  • PhDScientist

    This year, 1.6 MILLION Americans will be diagnosed with Cancer.
    Half of them will eventually die of it — after suffering pain beyond the ability of words to describe.
    Every one of them deserves the right to have safe, legal, access to Medical Marijuana.
    Every. Single. One.

  • Lawrence Goodwin

    The DEA’s entire $18 million “Cannabis Eradication Program” equals the destruction of America itself. Whether DEA, state and local agents find “ditchweed” or plants with properly tended, seedless, female flowers, this program is the stone cold heart of the Anti Marihuana Tyranny (empowered by Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act) about which I always rant. We see so much cannabis destruction here in New York, year after depressing year, out of those very funds–and our local TV and newspaper reporters routinely act as cheerleaders for this madness. The plants with seedless, female flowers are most often grown on private property, the bedrock to the concepts of ‘life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.’ Every passing day without total cannabis freedom, in all 50 states, brings America closer to death.

  • The Truth

    Why only half? They should cut all the funding for the worthless DEA and give us a tax break.

  • calvet11

    The DEA is a slowly dying dinosaur. It just won’t roll over and die. Like all government agencies they are easy to get started and a bitch to stop. So it will be a slow process, worth it to get rid of a cancer like the DEA and by the way the IRS.

  • It is not a waste of money. The DEA gets paid well for its efforts. /sarc

  • Silverado

    I’m sure they’re against MMJ so wouldn’t that make them child abusers for withholding that lifesaving medicine from children?? Why don’t we just call them what they are??

    • jasen joseph hylbert

      The likely case is that the corrupt criminal justice system will continue to try and label people as bad parents just for using herbal cannabis. The ciminal justice system is not a viable solution to any real issues which relate to violence, because it is corrupt and falsely directs blame to make scapegoats of people to create the illusion that their bloated criminal justice budgets are actually yielding real justice. I am not complaining about any speeding tickets I have recieved, but when we trust the criminal justice system with more complex tasks it ends up being counterproductive.

  • Michael Miller

    I read the headline and thought… “What a novel idea.”

    • jasen joseph hylbert

      If I am interpreting your comment correctly, my best response is that you make the point concisely and effectively – only in a fictional novel would the criminal justice system actually make honest efforts to reduce violence. The prisons are for profit and the population still rife with bigotries and vengeful hatreds that will result in more scapegoating than actual justice.

  • jasen joseph hylbert

    I should hope that some of the busts were of prohibitionists and not just of regular people just possessing, failing pee tests, and selling in a wag which was not corrupt and probibitionist. One real way to really repeal prohibition would be to bust the people who are prolonging prohibition by corrupting things – sadly oftentimes this is not the way enforcement is carried out.

    White collar crime can be a lot worse than someone abusing their kid because it can result in increased rates of lack and can be the main contributing factor which causes and prolongs wars. Similarly, economic sanctions can cause more death and misery than outright war.

    One question is will the refocusing of resources spent on enforcement be directed at the real sources of victimization or will they just continue to be directed at making scapegoats of innocent people. While I am otherwise an optimist, I reckognize the fact that the criminal justice system is far from infallible. My prediction is that the media will act like pedophile priests and serious abusers are being enforced upon while in reality they will be making patsies of guys who reluctantly slap their girlfriend’s ass during sex because they literally asked for it and then wanted revenge on them when brokenhearted after a breakup and things like that. Enforcement, by its very nature, is an afterthought at best and tremendously corruptable. Enforcement and punishment have a history 9f being carried out in a rigged and bigotry based corrupt way and I doubt this will change. The real answer is cutting the budgets of the criminal justice system.

    They will be making patsies of herbal cannabis users, for instance. While some will think that we have been legitimatized and given the respect we deserve, a stigma surrounding the use of herbal cannabis will still be around and the criminal justice system which has been built on a century of mafia corruption will simply be telling different lies about the same groups of people they have been discriminating against for centuries.

    It is naive to think that the criminal justice system will magically begin to be absent of corruption and scapegoating. We can encourage morality amingst eachother in ways that involve forethought, as opposed to throwing huge amounts of money at the failed and proven to be corrupt criminal justice system.

  • jasen joseph hylbert

    In order to avoid being selectively enforced upon, we as members of herbal cannabis culture must consciously work to improve our image amongst the majority of people who do not use herbal cannabis. Perhaps making people think deeply about the issue by putting then in our shoes for a moment by pointing out the real health concerns associated with caffiene, alcohol and pill use will prove an effective way to decrease anti cannabis bigotry as time moves on. I acknowledge that not standing in the way of hemp farming is an integral aspect of getting rid of anti cannabis bigotry and avoiding any increases in anti cannabis bigotry. I could prove it to people that it is possible to have urban greenhouses which use natural and/ or artificial light which grow herbal cannabis in ways which still increase thc percentages in the resin. We must stop slandering other herbal cannabis culture members too. Telling someone that they need a prescription in order to deserve herbal cannabis is a lie and makes herbal cannabis culture look very dishonest.

    Association is not correlation, but many of the masses will associate the concepts of dishonesty and corruption with herbal cannabis untill we have made it an honest culture devoid of corruption and lies. Increases in demand as a result of more use through cooking with herbal cannabis will be happening. Those into “dabbing” should consider the fact that putting very large quantities into cream or butter may satisfy their demands. As always, any method of consumption of pure herbal cannabis will be without any risk or negative side effects whatsoever for those who enjoy herbal cannabis.

  • jasen joseph hylbert

    Enforcement dollars are wasted dollars which will tend to be counterproductive in regards to the proported allocation. How about the ellimination of DEA funds is just translated into tax cuts or getting rid of government debts and deficits? How about the ellimination of DEA funds is translated into spending on real renewable energy sources and necessary infrastructure such as roads and bridges? How about any money saved from cutting the DEA be used for needed things which everyone benefits from like making food and fuel more affordable for everyone?

    The pedophile priests and violent pimps have been running the show and I highly doubt that they will stop pointing the finger at anyone they feel they can sucessfully slander to distract from their actual wrongdoings.

  • jasen joseph hylbert

    Government can do a fairly great job of ensuring adequate infrastructure like roads and ensuring adequate food and fuel supplies.

    Government does a bad job trying to increase morality. Increasing morality is not the government’s job. Attempts to use government to increase morality will mostly prove counterproductive, wasteful, and corrupt.

    • PhDScientist

      There is nothing immoral about Marijuana — and everything immoral about the laws against it.

      It is IMMORAL to leave Marijuana illegal for even one second longer.
      It is one of the most important MORAL issues of our time.

      Morality is on the side of legalization of Marijuana — especially for Medical Purposes.
      In that case, its a moral imperative — just like civil rights are.

      It is immoral to deny a child with Dravet’s Syndrome the medication they need to save their lives.

      It is immoral to deny Medical Marijuana to Cancer Patients who need it to help get through the horrors of Chemotherapy and through the pain of Cancer itself and give them back their desire to live.
      .
      This whole issue is one the most important MORAL ISSUES of our time.

  • John Oates

    what I found odd about this story is this … last year on c-span I saw congress talking to the head of the DEA about his top officers having drug party and taking money and gold from the drug gangs around the world.. AND the top officers of the DEA all so had sex with under age girls age 14 to 16… and the drug gangs was the ones paying the girls .. NOW IN THE USA IF YOU DO THIS IT IS CALLED RAPE AND YOU GO TO JAIL FOR 20 YEAR MIN…..This is what came out of this hearing the congress SAID IT DID NOT HAVE THE POWERS TO FIRE THE POLICE THAT WORKED FOR THE DEA……. and all the top police officer to this day are steal on the job….. so what congress is tilling us the best they can do is cut 18 million.. from there department for RAPING LITTLE GIRLS AROUND THE WORLD… and this is the same DEA officers busting in to your home with mask over there face and around the kids in the USA… why do you not get this we the people are paying the DEA police officers to rape little girls… congress is the very ones that make our LAWS PEOPLE…

    • ERIC GROSS

      Yes The DEA Is The Real Cartel They Need To Be Abolished, They Go After Low level Street Dealers Instead Of The Suppliers, That,s Like Putting Duct Tape On A busted Water Pipe, Over 30 years & the drug Problem is 100X Worse. We Can Go To War & Take Over Countries , But We Cant Stop Drugs?????? They do not want it to go away

  • Ellyn Williams

    I would have to agree with you. Why don’t they reallocate the entire $18 million? Why did they only want to reallocate half of the budget; what is the other half going to be used for? To continue to eradicate marijuana plants?

  • Closet Warrior

    Seems pointless to use allocated funds on marijuana irradiation especially in a recreational state. Also, other programs could flourish as well as domestic violence and child abuse furthering education in many fields.

  • johndenton46

    I think that a firm decision to redistribute the full 18 million away from the brutal ignorance displayed by a very sick weed police is called for and way overdue. Legal Cannabis is coming whether or not these scary maniacs exist, though, it is clear.