Apr 022012
 April 2, 2012

steve deangelo ssdpGun Violence Kills 7 as Feds Target Medical Cannabis in Oakland

Ever since the launch of the resurgent campaign against medical cannabis, I and other movement leaders have warned that limited federal law enforcement resources should be devoted to real crime, not medical cannabis.

Today, the City of Oakland suffered a terrible example of what will happen when those warnings are not heeded.

At the same time dozens of federal agents were raiding Oaksterdam University, in a different part of the city seven people lost their lives in another act of gun violence (Oikos Christian University, near the airport).

We will never know whether the manpower and resources used to investigate and raid Oaksterdam U could have prevented this particular incident of gun violence. But there is no question that the federal government could have substantially reduced the number of guns on Oakland streets, if they devoted the same resources to that problem as they have to medical cannabis.

Harborside Health Center made a commitment to our patients when we opened our doors five years ago, to provide them the best cannabis medicine, in the safest possible manner. We have no plans to close, and intend to continue providing safe access to cannabis medicines for our more than 100,000 patients.

The voters of the City of Oakland have repeatedly affirmed their support for the regulated distribution of medical cannabis. In response, elected officials and city staff developed the most successful model of cannabis regulation in the state. This system stands in stark contrast to the failed policies of the federal government.

Oakland’s successful system has provided safe access for patients, created hundreds of well-paying jobs, generated millions of dollars of tax dollars, and reduced the burden on law enforcement. It is a system that has benefited all Oaklanders, not just those who rely on cannabis for medicine.

In contrast, if the US Attorneys are successful in their nationwide campaign, millions of patients will be taken out of safe facilities and returned to street dealers, tens of thousands of well-paying jobs will be destroyed, hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue destroyed–and all those assets will be returned to the criminal underground.

It is a policy with all downsides and no upsides; it’s a policy which hurts all Americans, not just those who rely on cannabis for medicine. Medical cannabis patients and their supporters should express their outrage directly to the US Attorneys, who have initiated and are continuing to prosecute this vicious campaign to suffocate safe access.

Steve DeAngelo, Executive Director of Harborside Health Center

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About Johnny Green

Johnny Green is a marijuana activist from Oregon. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Public Policy. Follow Johnny Green on Facebook and Twitter. Also, feel free to email any concerns.
  • DarkerMatter

    If you don’t advocate for full legalization I have no sympathy for you. Mr Lee is honest in everything he does.
    I hear Mr DeAngelo doesn’t advocate for full legalization. Maybe that’s why Mr DEAngelo hasn’t been targeted yet?

  • BudsDirect

    And don’t try to put this on guns either.Â

  • joe bleaux

    Read the drug laws, they reduce us to animals an act of genocide. google or look in you tube for “man or other animals” and see why all drug laws are illegal and fraudulent on their face.

  • Apparition

    The rights affirmed to all Americans in our Constitution were paid for with blood and treasure of great men.

    Those rights will be lost forever if the tyrants are allowed to continue with the thuggery that Oakland witnessed on 4/2.

    The federal government only exists because we allow it to.

    It’s time to pull the plug.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/7IIZPAKGV2SVKIKG3TLWGBLPA4 Huskey

    Cheeby don’t kill it’s fools with gun that kill they just tryin to make a point. It’s never going anywhere there just mad because with all of the shops that crime is going down. There getting something out of it being illegal because if you think about as long as drugs been in this country they have never been able to stop the flow of it. Why because if they shut it down the shop the jails will be getting empty and no more free labor for these big business. Since shop have been open they see a drop in there profits, it’s all about the dollar.

  • John Doe

    What a lame headline. Yes, I do not agree with the raids and thus this use of federal resources and manpower but to suggest the shootings would or could have been prevented had the raid not been happening is ludicrous and seriously disrespectful to those people who lost their lives yesterday.Being disingenuous and exploiting other tragedies does not help the movement.

    • bob

      How dare you. Disrespect? We are giving them and many other people the utmost respect by trying to change the way the Government works. Many people who hold the view above actually care about the people who died, as well as prohibition, and recognize that prohibition and government trying to dictate morals allows so many real crimes go unrecognized and unpunished. If the Government wasn’t so obsessed with trying to dictate morality, it would be much more possible that somebody caught these killings early, or somebody was actually patrolling rather than trying to stop some kid from smoking weed. Some people may be exploiting this situation, but so many more people actually care about how harmful prohibition is and are deeply saddened by what happened. Don’t you dare try to make this out to being disingenuous, because I know my feelings are genuine and this is fucking sick.

    • www.BudsDirect.net

      It’s immoral men who do these crimes, not the guns. Â

  • Meatloaf3535

    The point would be Doe, that had the government been working on preventing real violence or actually out on the streets available for response, it is entirely possible this tragedy could have been prevented. Any insult to the violence committed is only done by the ones perpetrating such action.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=529682614 Andrew Zebrun

    A government at war with it’s own people will never know peace!

  • ajweberman

    declogalo is the best. They can’t scare him. Me and Aron love him