Mar 122016
 March 12, 2016

bernie sanders marijuanaIf you were looking for an example of how the Michigan government has politicized every aspect of state authority, you just found it.

Homeland Security, Michigan State Police and other agencies raided nine medical marijuana distribution centers in the town of Gaylord, Michigan Thursday night, just weeks after the City Council passed an ordinance in support of dispensaries.

Not only did they hit those nine, they have swept out a total of at least a dozen mid-Michigan dispensaries within 48 hours. The raids began less than 24 hours after liberal candidate Bernie Sanders won Tuesday’s Democratic presidential primary election.

The primary election was called by news media in favor of Bernie Sanders at 11:00 pm on March 8. By 6:00 pm on March 9, the raiding of medical marijuana patient homes and businesses had begun.

Governor Rick Snyder strikes again, this time with a blue fist.

DETAILS

A press release issued on Friday, March 11 by law enforcement give credit to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, 3 different Sheriff’s offices, 4 different narcotics task forces and the State Police for taking down the medical marijuana patients and their businesses.

No precipitating incident drove this new rampage- there was no change in law, no fatal traffic accident, no public outcry. The only event which could have generated this kind of response was the adoption of the pro-dispensary ordinance in Gaylord.

And the passing of that ordinance must have really pissed off state-based law enforcement agencies. On May 27, 2015 the State Police and their local narcotics teams hit 8 Gaylord dispensaries. On September 3rd, citizens filed a petition to make dispensaries, or provisioning centers, legal to operate with city approval. On January 11 the City Council passed the ordinance, which added medical marijuana provisioning centers as an approved and protected use in certain commercial areas. The ordinance was to go into effect 30 days after, or approx. February 10.

It’s like the Gaylord City Council flipped the Michigan State Police post the bird and said, stay out of my yard. This is what our citizens want, and we agree.

The raids happened on March 9, before any Center could get through the licensing process. Apparently the State Police wanted to squash businesses before they could gain the protection of local zoning laws.

Police agencies like to claim they can raid locally-empowered but not state-sanctioned dispensaries at any time in Michigan. This recent action is a series of inter-agency coordinated raids involving dozens of police vehicles and an unknown amount of manpower over several days which was clearly planned for some time, leading to questions about the political timing of the raids.

TIMING IS EVERYTHING

Was this really a totally random act of enforcement by police of a law that has existed for years?

Let’s evaluate the circumstance. The centers in question have been known to exist for a long time- some centers, for years in the same location. The eyes of the nation were upon Michigan, and now they are not. No more coverage of the Flint Water Crisis on a daily basis, no more candidate offices and the CNN cameras. That ended on March 8.

On March 9, the raids began.

It would have been very unwise to raid these medical marijuana distribution centers before a pro-marijuana law reform candidate like Bernie Sanders came to Michigan. Any stories of widespread police raids and suffering marijuana patients would have elevated the issue of cannabis’ Schedule 1 status into the Michigan presidential debates. Sanders does very well when the subject of marijuana enters the debate.

Similarly, the Flint Water Crisis occupied the media’s attention for months before the candidates and debates arrived. This was a time when media investigators were poking and prodding for any angle on government’s overreach of authority, and raiding the homes of sick people is an act of government that is not widely supported by the populace.

Add to that the January 29th dismissal of one charge and a not guilty finding on another charge against Al Witt, one of the men charged in the May raids on Gaylord dispensaries. Witt was convicted of only one charge, a conviction that will likely be appealed. This must have frustrated some Sheriffs.

It doesn’t take a big leap to imagine that the State Police may have wanted to drop on the Centers after the ordinance was adopted in early January but were told to wait, to avoid any unwanted attention to Governor Snyder during his administration’s time of crisis.

Then, they were most likely told to wait again until after the Presidential candidates and their attendant news media left the state and all eyes were elsewhere. The candidates left; the raids began.

Boy, they sure didn’t wait for long.

Source: The Compassion Chronicles

About Rick Thompson

"Rick Thompson was the Editor in Chief for the entire 2-year run of the Michigan Medical Marijuana Magazine, was the spokesman for the Michigan Association of Compassion Centers and is the current Editor and Lead Blogger for The Compassion Chronicles. Rick has addressed committees in both the House and Senate, has authored over 200 articles on marijuana and is a professional photographer."Rick Thompson Is An Author At The Compassion Chronicles and focuses on all things Michigan.
Dissenting opinions are welcome, insults and personal attacks are discouraged and hate speech will not be tolerated. Spammers and people trying to buy or sell cannabis or any drugs will be banned. Read our comment policy and FAQ for more information
  • Jon

    I wish they would have raided it durings Sander’s visit to the state. It would have shone a national spotlight on the disgusting act, and would have been condemned by most people, and probably the media, too. They were too smart for that. I thought it was illegal to raid medial marijuana dispensaries, but I assume, since this was not a state-ran dispensary, it is legal? b.s.
    http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-medical-pot-20141216-story.html

    • Adam Assenberg

      I had a Business Lic. in the State of Washington to help others with Medical Cannabis needs, I won my case when the D.A. dropped all charges & I even got my cannabis back from the Sheriff under Court order. Now I am in a Federal case with a lawsuit for three million for false arrest and killing my garden.

  • SilentPatriot

    Weed > lead poisoning.

    • Fungi Sclerotia 1427

      In the 1930’s, Harry Anslinger said that
      “Marihuana is worse than murder”, so it must be true…
      So…
      Lead in the water is insignificant by comparison…

  • malcolmkyle

    When fascism came to the USA it was not labelled “Made in Germany”, it was not marked with a swastika, it was not even called fascism. It actually had many names, like Prohibition, War on (some) Drugs, DEA, CIA, Kleiman, Sabet, Sembler, Chabott, Volkov, Leonhart, Rick Snyder ….

  • Fungi Sclerotia 1427

    On 04-November-2015,
    Bernie Sanders introduced Senate Bill 2237,
    the “Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2015”,
    to remove cannabis from the federal CSA,
    (federal DE-scheduling).

    Contact your own state’s senators and ask them to support / co-sponsor SB 2237:
    http://salsa3.salsalabs.com/o/51046/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=17703

    ^^^ Above link is to NORML’s “Take Action” page… ^^^

  • briteleaf

    As long as Americans keep voting for the professional politicians in our RECORD-BREAKING, DO-NOTHING, REPUBLICAN CONGRESS, we’ll keep seeing these kinds of persecutions that are a waste of taxpayer dollars. They want to eliminate governmental control of anything EXCEPT medical access to marijuana and a woman’s right to choose what is right for her. There shouldn’t be any “medical marijuana” because Americans should be able to fill the prescriptions at their local drug store without licenses, fees and thousands of regulations. They want to eliminate the Department of Education and the Environmental Protection Agency for their corporate campaign contributors. America already has more citizens in prison than any other country on earth. The federal, state and local law enforcement folks should be prosecuted for harassment and a violation of our civil rights.

  • calvet11

    A fine example of jack booted, storm trooper tactics by ultra-nationalists, authoritarian goons trying to hold on to their pitiful government jobs. Attack peaceful medical businesses, attack sick, helpless, seniors and patients,by our heroes. So sad in these times of change a few hold onto ideas and beliefs found false years and years ago. Well FU*K them! It’s past time to be nice, break the law on cannabis, go ahead throw this Husband, Father, Grandfather, disabled, Vietnam vet, in jail you thugs. Put me back on opiates for my PTSD and I’ll show you what PTSD is all about.

    • Steve Malenka

      You had me at “jack booted”. Michigan is terrible.

  • Sinclair

    The bullies are at it again. This was a pointless act of gestapo tactics. It was ok fir a major city like grand Rapids to legalize and the capital lansing to semi legalize. And our wonderful (child poisoning ) government sends the KGB to pick on a small town.

  • http://www.organibliss.com Doc Deadhead

    So far this decade…the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, 3 different Sheriff’s offices,
    4 different narcotics task forces and the State Police have done more armed robberies in Gaylord than criminals have.

    Oh yea, they don’t have any armed robberies in Gaylord other than by law enforcement.

    Isn’t that convenient…Congress stops funding for the DEA to do medical marijuana raids so the Dept. of Homeland Security came in as the Federal Agents.

  • Jeff Brown

    Cannabis is the most useful plant on the planet; food, clothing, shelter, energy, medicine, insight, re-creation. It has been mankinds companion and helpmate since the beginning. Any law against it is a crime against humanity, creation and the creator.

  • Ted Mishler

    mean folk need to “cut it out” :-)
    Bernie for prez!

  • Kathleen Chippi

    and the feds/Denver LEO went on a (unconstitutional under A20 and A64) raid rampage in CO today and promise it will last months…because the war is not even close to being over. Longest war in the history of the US, perpetrated by big government, big business and mass media and based on lies, prejudice and greed….

  • PeedNUrGenePool

    All these cops are doing is driving more nails in the Coffin of the Drug War.