Apr 252013
 April 25, 2013

police authorityYesterday I broke the story of Lindsey Rinehart and Sarah Caldwell. They are two young mothers who are very prominent marijuana activists in the Gem State.  Lindsey is the state’s most visible medical marijuana patient.  She suffers from multiple sclerosis and is the chief petitioner for the Idaho Medical Choice Act, a very limited form of medical marijuana initiative.  Sarah is the financial officer for Moms 4 Marijuana International.

You can help Lindsey & Sarah with legal fees here: http://rad-r.us/IdahoFund

While Lindsey and Sarah were vacationing, along with Lindsey’s husband Josh (the director of Idaho NORML), their four children were staying with a babysitter when police, acting on a tip from an elementary school friend of one of their boys, arrived with child protective services.  The police, without a warrant, intimidated the babysitter into allowing them into the home, where they allegedly found Lindsey’s medical marijuana.  Based on that imminent threat to the children, all four boys, ages 11, 10, 6, and 5, were placed into foster care.

Meanwhile in Idaho, just a county away from Lindsey & Sarah, another mother has attracted the attention of police for endangering her children.  According to KTVB, a young unnamed mother left her 3-year-old and 10-month-old in the car as she briefly went back into the house for something.  While alone in the car, the 3-year-old found a loaded pistol and discharged it, grazing the 10-month-old in the cheek.

You can help Lindsey & Sarah with legal fees here: http://rad-r.us/IdahoFund

This happened Monday. No charges have been filed yet. Presumably, the young mother still has her 3-year-old and 10-month-old.

Let’s recap:  In Idaho, if you are a sick person who advocates for legal marijuana and cops find some of it in your home, you are endangering your children, they are taken immediately, and you may face felony time in prison.  But if you are a healthy person who lets your unattended children have unfettered access to a loaded handgun and it actually does harm one of your children, it is just an “accidental shooting” and you get to keep your kids and no charges are filed.

You can help Lindsey & Sarah with legal fees here: http://rad-r.us/IdahoFund

Sadly, this isn’t confined to just Idaho.  Daisy Bram, a legal medical marijuana patient in California, has lost her children repeatedly for alleged “abuse”, which consists of growing non-toxic houseplants and breastfeeding while using marijuana.  This is what it sounded like when police literally ripped her baby away from her breast.

Last week, I collected five stories of parents who lost their children over their marijuana gardens, and another five stories where children aged 4 and under were shot or shot somebody when they were allowed unfettered access to a loaded handgun.  Nobody in the five child/gun stories was ever charged with child endangerment.  None of those children with guns were ever taken away by child protective services.

How tragically absurd. If your child has access to a lethal machine that kills someone, it’s just an accident.  If your child has access to a non-lethal plant that heals someone, it’s child endangerment.

Idaho Danger

About Russ Belville

Executive Director: Russ Belville has been active in Oregon marijuana reform since 2005, when he was elected second-in-command of the state affiliate, Oregon NORML. After four years with Oregon NORML, Russ was hired by National NORML in 2009, working as Outreach Coordinator and hosting the NORML Daily Audio Stash podcast until 2012. Since then, Russ launched the 420RADIO marijuana legalization network and is the host of The Russ Belville Show, a live daily marijuana news talk radio program. Russ is also a prolific writer, with over 300 articles posted online and in print in HIGH TIMES, Huffington Post, Alternet, The Weed Blog, Marijuana Politics, and more.
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  • http://trixterphillips.wordpress.com/ TriXteR Phillips

    Thank you for covering this and many other important issues, I do hope this story gains the nation attention it rightfully deserves.

  • pkr8ch

    I can’t imagine loosing my kids over weed, it’s ridiculous that we treat people like this. The audio of the baby getting ripped away from mom is just sickening, I cant listen to the whole thing. They kidnap these kids to protect them?! Wtf!? So they can end up all f-ed later on cause they were raised in foster care? But when a baby lives in a environment with loaded guns laying around with a drunk as*hole dad there’s no problem. The kids affected by our ridiculous, ill conceived war on drugs is the biggest reason I’m an advocate to ending it. And it should have never need banned in the first place! F-ing yellow journalism.

  • http://powerandcontrol.blogspot.com/ M. Simon

    Thanks Russ. I saw the piece on this at Reason. I blogged it. Including a prominent donation link. Also a link back to here.

    There are more endocannabinoid receptors in the body than any other receptor type. The endocannabinoid system is a major regulator in the body implicated in almost all diseases including cancer.

  • http://www.facebook.com/blueeyeddoll5463 Lindsey Rinehart

    Thank you!! <3

  • timbambam

    The politic’s of pot. So many prosucutors see marijuana as a way to build there careers. They can show how many convictions they have. They wont tell you at election time that 30% of those convictions are for possesion of some sort. They dont care who they hurt along the way. If they take kids away from parents they are justdoing thier job.
    When you look at the big picture of taking kids out of a home because it is dandgerous thats just crazy. Think all of the money that is being wasted. You have to pay for putting the children somewhere safe. Plusthe cost of jailing and trials and all of the rest of it. All because someone who has multiple sclorosis and is using marijuana tk get some relief. I have see oictures of kis with bongs to thier mouths or a big joint and you dont hear this kind of rediculousness.

    • http://churchofsmoke.org/ Jose

      It is law enforcement’s favorite tool to violate the Constitution.

  • Smee420

    This broke my heart, but what really saddened me was that I wasn’t the least bit surprised. I live in East TN, and have said many times that you are better off killing someone here than having marijuana. I have a felony record because it is not legal here for any reason and I use for medicinal purposes.

    I was unable to listen to more than a few seconds of Daisy’s ordeal. My heart goes out to her and every other mother (every parent) that has suffered similar abuse. Yes, I said abuse. This is a gross abuse of power by ignorant people who refuse to accept that they are WRONG.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dave.mcarthur.7 Dave McArthur

    The insanity in this country has to end. We have to stop supporting the two party political system. Democrats nor Republicans, give a damn about what the people of American want.

    • http://churchofsmoke.org/ Jose

      aka two party dictatorship.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Hppy-Hippi/1847165691 Hppy Hippi

    Russ, you need to lead the “SHAME CAMPAIGN” for Idaho. Ever notice how pot people never go “DORNER” on the law enforcement industry, even though their lives are actually ruined by law enforcement actions ???

  • http://twitter.com/raychristlTHC ray christl

    I pray that Lindsey gets her kids back asap…another excellent piece from RadmanRuss. Guns are okay but cannabis gets your children kidnapped by the state is beyond human comprehension IMO.

  • http://churchofsmoke.org/ Jose

    We knew this would happen. The government is now behaving just like the Mexican government that kidnaps its citizens and holds them hostage for money and power.

  • JSebastian

    The solution is for citizens to start killing the aggressors in these situations; these are the government agents who are committing these assaults, kidnappings, and thefts. When enough have died that they all live with some fear in their hearts that they too will suffer the consequences for their illegal and immoral aggression, then their behavior will change. But it won’t change until there are those personal consequences.