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Medical Marijuana Sponsor Says Police Are Addicted To Drug War Dollars

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marijuana arrest prison drug drugsMinnesota Representative Carly Melin has been trying to bring medical marijuana to her state. When she set out to achieve this goal, she assumed that there would be some tough negotiations and compromises along the way. Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton has insisted that any successful medical marijuana bill would require getting law enforcement on board. Unfortunately, it appears that members of Minnesota law enforcement are unwilling to compromise in any way.

“It’s like negotiating with a brick wall. All along I have said that I am willing to amend the bill. But they won’t move at all.” said Carly Melin according to Politics In Minnesota. The article went on to describe how Representative Melin met with the Minnesota Law Enforcement Coalition to discuss her proposal. The Minnesota Law Enforcement Coalition includes the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association, Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association, Minnesota Sheriffs Association, Minnesota County Attorneys Association, and Minnesota State Association of Narcotics Investigators.

Ultimately the officers presented a 10 page bulleted outline of their absolute opposition to medical marijuana. One objection that was raised at the meeting, yet was absent in the report, was the truth – that officers are concerned about what the measure would do to police budgets which thrive due to asset forfeitures from marijuana investigations.

“According to Melin, Dennis Flaherty, the executive director of the MPPOA, explicitly told her that he was worried that legalization — in any form — could lead to harmful reductions in the federal grants that are an important funding source for many police agencies.” the Politics In Minnesota article stated.

This is a very common thing, and the importance of Representative Melin bringing attention to this area of public policy cannot be understated. From Minnesota to Oregon to every other state in the union, law enforcement uses the drug war to bolster their budgets. It’s an area that doesn’t get nearly enough attention because it’s not flashy, and doesn’t draw big headlines. However, if more people new about it, reform would come, and with it, positive change.

If cops didn’t get a cut of what they take from marijuana arrests (cars, money, property, etc.), would they bust as many people for something that is harmless? Law enforcement groups oppose medical marijuana in Minnesota and beyond with everything they got. Patients go without the medicine they need, even though it’s a safe, effective alternative to prescription drugs. Why is that? Obviously it’s because these members of law enforcement care more about their budgets than they do suffering patients, which is a sad thing.

Some facts about asset forfeiture in Minnesota:

  • In 2012, police in Minnesota seized approximately $8.3 million of cash and property under the state’s forfeiture law
  • The St. Paul Police Department netted more than $582,000 from asset seizures in 2012. It was the second-biggest haul of any police agency in the state — a fact made more notable since the proceeds were derived exclusively from controlled-substance cases.
  • Minnesota law enforcement agencies netted nearly $30 million between 2003 and 2010 through the use of forfeiture.
  • The average seizure in Minnesota is worth $1,253.

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  • David Kasper

    Ya, so they think, this sounds like police brutality, and I am willing to forgive them if they look at the future and see that they can still back up legalizing medical marijuana to help all that are in pain.

  • It’s not serve and protect anymore it’s seize and profit.

  • yugonezigzag

    I could not agree more … what sad state of affair’s when your talking that there are no cure’s for many disease’s ..and other ailment’s …but they allow you to buy asprin and other counter drugs ……. this needs to be straight out a.s.a.p. in government operations …..as a taxpayer I am totally disappointed in that reply by law enforcement …the gig is up now !

  • Arunigrace

    American cops are a mess. They’re roided up, coked up, methed up with endless budgets and guns. They love sick marijuana folks because they can’t fight back. They’re afraid to go into gang territory every second of the day but will beat a cancer patient down in a heartbeat.
    This happens regularly and the politicians don’t understand why the tax payers want to stop funding their paychecks.

  • painkills2

    Hey, Silicon Valley! Why don’t you invent a scammer-zapper?

  • Jim

    The law enforcement couldn’t care less about the public interests. All they’re worried about is federal funding and forfeitures.
    At least they truthful.

  • painkills2

  • oo

    Once and fore all Gov Dayton this works fine in other states, and why is this a doctor patient personal right?
    And when did Mn get flabbergadted with such bullying and lies if you want to work on public safety cops start working on the heroin problem

  • moldy

    They understand this and they don’t give a crap. They’re stupid but not dumb, throw in evil and you have a police state.

  • Salamandra

    They are not addicted to the dollars, they are just addicted to good weed. I am considering to become a cop and start smoking for free… 8)))

  • Shepherd Yerusalem

    The ONLY thing dangerous about marijuana are the cops who shoot people for having it:

    Number of American deaths per year that result directly or primarily from the following selected causes nationwide, according to World Almanacs, Life Insurance Actuarial (death) Rates, and the last 20 years of U.S. Surgeon Generals’ reports.

    TOBACCO – 340,000 to 450,000

    ALCOHOL (Not including 50% of all highway deaths and 65% of all murders) – 150,000+

    ASPIRIN (Including deliberate overdose) – 180 to 1,000+

    CAFFEINE (From stress, ulcers, and triggering irregular heartbeats, etc.) – 1,000 to 10,000

    “LEGAL” DRUG OVERDOSE (Deliberate or accidental) from legal, prescribed or patent medicines and/or mixing with alcohol – e.g. Valium/alcohol – 14,000 to 27,000

    ILLICIT DRUG OVERDOSE – (Deliberate or accidental) from all illegal drugs – 3,800 to 5,200

    MARIJUANA – 0

    (**Marijuana users also have the same or LOWER incidence of murders and highway deaths and accidents than the general NON-marijuana using population as a whole.** Cancer Study, UCLA; U.S. Funded ($6 million), First & Second Jamaican Studies, 1968 to 1974; Costa Rican Studies, 1980 to 1982; et al. LOWEST TOXICITY 100% of the studies done at dozens of American universities and research facilities show pot toxicity does not exist. Medical history does not record anyone dying from an overdose of marijuana (UCLA, Harvard, Temple, etc.)

    Accordingly a 1993 study done by the U.S. Department of Transportation came to the same conclusion as the above concerning marijuana and driving safety:

    “Marijuana, administered in a dose of 100 µg THC per kg of whole body weight…did not significantly change mean driving performance as measured…” – U.S Department of Transportation: Marijuana and Actual Driving Performance DOT HS 808 078

    The fact is people who use marijuana reflexes are not affected in a negative way and they become more conscious of safety, sometimes refusing to even drive.

    Marijuana is a plant with a safety record second to none.

    Anyone who would like to dispute these FACTS, point to a death that involves marijuana and nothing but marijuana, or hold your tongue.

  • Zedd

    Try Google : Harry J Anslinger.. then you will see this is nothing new. The whole War on drugs is about Job Protection & power games ! Here in Aotearoa/NZ its just the same.

  • MrPC

    Or we could just stop the disgusting charade called the “war on drugs” and use enforcement funds to deal with the mental health, social and medical issues like an advanced civilization. Right.

  • Noble Watchman

    Prohibitionist are murderers,prohibition is murder. Prison system corrupt private entities and the pigs are revenue agents for the criminals who control them,drugs,government,media and more than half the minds of Americans. Money and Control is the game not safety,health or public welfare,these are Facts

  • Jonny

    Minnesota Police Officials and Governor Dayton will be causing bodily injury to, who would be, qualified Med Marijuana Patients if the bill is VETO’d. These Parients should stand together and take this to court!
    What a broken system Minnesota has. The hell with veto this veto that, LET THE PEOPLE VOTE!!! Peace.

  • jontomas

    This is how the police – especially all in “drug task forces” – fully deserve to be called PIGS.

  • Hardrock1a

    I have always said, something is seriously not right when Law Enforcement and Criminals on are the same side of an issue, they both what it to remain illegal, they will loose too much money if the country follows Colorado and Washington’s lead.

  • Jamie Guest

    My closest town is 20 minutes from my house and our county seat is the only place without an open dispensary.If it opens i am half-hour away but right on edge of 25 air miles. I seriously think my county makes up the remaining 3% of population not within mileage limit. My closest disp is Globe @ 60 miles away, or Clifton or Cochise @ 90 miles for me. Southeast AZ is as backwoods as it gets. 65% Mormon, 30% Christian or Catholic (not that there’s anything wrong with religions, just that their opinion makes the rules here). The main job around here is mining or D.O.C. then border patrol and law enforcement. Cotton is king in my “Hazard” county and “Boss Hogg” is in charge of the daily rules around here. Speed and prescription addicts are common-place around here but weed is stillconsidered the devil’s lettuce. I have family from Flag…neat place exact opposite climate from my neck of the woods!

  • Flag Ben

    Where did this happen? Flagstaff/Coconino is hippy mountain weed mecca land I am surprised to hear there are still parts of the state so backwards with dispensaries now in every county.

  • 2buds4me

    So what’s the greater harm here – “harmful reductions in the federal grants that are an important funding source for many police agencies” – or harm to people trying to care for their health and the health of their families? Idiots – no compassion, no fellow feeling for other human beings.

  • micko

    HAhahah scummy cops don’t wanna lose their drug money…. cartels all of em…. everything else is loosing money even health so fuck the police

  • Dee Paulson

    “It is hard to get a man to
    understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding
    it” -Upton Sinclair

  • speedracer

    I think we should charge the officer’s with harassing citizens .if its legal they have No right to arrest someone with a medical card we need to take there stupid asses supreme court.if they are that board they have to Chase after medical then I dont think we need them fire there asses, sorry but we just dont need to pay you to chase a plant and if that’s all you have to do then we dont need nor do we want you around leaching our tax money

  • HmmmSaysDavidHume

    This is an example of the rampant corruption that defines police culture. This isn’t about dangers, morality, kids, or anything else. It’s about money itself, the root of all evil. And it has infiltrated police culture to such a degree that they will lie all the way to the unemployment line as legalization takes hold across the nation and the world.

    And even more disgusting, legislators and governors alike defer to their corrupt friends, to the continued suffering and death of its citizens.

    The real question is whether or not citizens will refuse to stand by idly while these corrupt oppressors continue to obfuscate the truth, spread a web of lies and deceit, and co-opt elected officials into continuing the payola that defines their entire existence and purpose.

    The governor is a shameful, disgusting excuse for a human. And he rightly deserves exposure or his own ignorance or for aiding ad abetting a criminal enterprise.

  • Jamie Guest

    Just last night in my sh*!hole town, an officer profiled my son-in-law racially and upon producing an AZMMJ card the officer said, ” We were told there were card-holders in the valley so we could expect to see it around. We have no guidelines or knowledge on what to do here”… My daughter had to step up and tell these 4 gentleman of law enforcement where they could go online to find our rules and regulations. She had to explain what the legal limit was for the 2 of them and that it was legal due to the fact that it was locked into the glove box or trunk while driving. These officers had bankroll in their eyes and would have given these citizens and patients the complete criminal run around had she not known her every state right to possess that medicine. it is sad that our local police departments don’t even know the laws they are supposed to be upholding and following in these changing times. In this area “weed is the Devil” and they are none to anxious to educate the masses otherwise.

  • Tbone

    Not to mention the bonus they get from the DEA every time they takedown a grower no matter how small . Even one plant gets them $$$$….. Yet it’s okay to shove booze and tobacco down our throats ! That shot kills Moore innocent people in a hour than marijuanna has Ever !

  • Jetdoc

    Asset Forfeiture laws have resulted in the “Militarization of our Police forces”. With every forfeiture they get MORE bold with their methods. It is Asset Forfeiture laws that have resulted in the deaths of numerous Police officers but even more innocent citizens. THIS has got to STOP! All the legalization of cannabis would do is require COPS to actually get of their asses and actually INVESTIGATE crimes. No more “LOW hanging fruit”, just picking the closest brother you can find and start frisking them. Legalization of marijuana will NOT stop the use and sale of HARD drugs. They can still use these laws to their advantage. But they’ll actually have to WORK for the $$$ now.

  • Randy Baker

    yeah this is the sad truth.. Law enforcement was originally set up to protect people from people. It has got out of hand now they try make laws to for morals on us, What i do or put in my body is my business as long as it doesnt harm anyone else its my business. If its anyone bussiness to try and tell me not to do it that is for family and church not some cops