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The Kick Them All Out Project

Fed Up With Feds

by Mary Sparrowdancer

On June 11, 2009, federal judge George Wu sentenced California resident, Charlie Lynch, to one year and one day in federal prison after a federal jury of deliberately uninformed Americans found Mr. Lynch guilty of federal charges for running a California medical marijuana dispensary that was completely legal under California laws.
The federal case against Charles C. Lynch might actually be seen as another test case in which the "federal government" was yet again testing the response and reactions of Americans to federal government tyranny, while once again trampling people's rights and liberties.
The jury deliberated two weeks before finding Charlie Lynch guilty of all federal charges, while apparently never being allowed to hear all of the facts pertaining to the case. In a brief statement, one jury member claimed that while Charlie seemed to be a "nice man with good intentions," he didn't "stay within the parameters of the federal law." What she and the other jurors did not know was that Charlie was operating in full compliance with state and local laws, that he had a business license to be dispensing medical marijuana, that he had the blessings of the local mayor and had been invited to join the Chamber of Commerce. His was a legitimate business serving a legitimate and compassionate medical purpose, not an illegal drug cartel.

Drugs in Portugal: Did Decriminalization Work?

By Maia Szalavitz

Pop quiz: Which European country has the most liberal drug laws? (Hint: It's not the Netherlands.)

Although its capital is notorious among stoners and college kids for marijuana haze–filled "coffee shops," Holland has never actually legalized cannabis — the Dutch simply don't enforce their laws against the shops. The correct answer is Portugal, which in 2001 became the first European country to officially abolish all criminal penalties for personal possession of drugs, including marijuana, cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine.

At the recommendation of a national commission charged with addressing Portugal's drug problem, jail time was replaced with the offer of therapy. The argument was that the fear of prison drives addicts underground and that incarceration is more expensive than treatment — so why not give drug addicts health services instead? Under Portugal's new regime, people found guilty of possessing small amounts of drugs are sent to a panel consisting of a psychologist, social worker and legal adviser for appropriate treatment (which may be refused without criminal punishment), instead of jail.

Video: American Drug War - Documentary Exposing The Truth About Our War On Drugs

The War on Drugs has become the longest and most costly war in American history, the question has become, how much more can the country endure? Inspired by the death of four family members from "legal drugs" Texas filmmaker Kevin Booth sets out to discover why the Drug War has become such a big failure. Three and a half years in the making the film follows gang members, former DEA agents, CIA officers, narcotics officers, judges, politicians, prisoners and celebrities. Most notably the film befriends Freeway Ricky Ross; the man many accuse for starting the Crack epidemic, who after being arrested discovered that his cocaine source had been working for the CIA. AMERICAN DRUG WAR shows how money, power and greed have corrupted not just dope fiends but an entire government. More importantly, it shows what can be done about it. This is not some 'pro-drug' stoner film, but a collection of expert testimonials from the ground troops on the front lines of the drug war, the ones who are fighting it and the ones who are living it.
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