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Florida’s Drug-Testing of the Poor Proves a Failure, but Some States Still Want to Follow their Example

  • by Allen St. Pierre, NORML Executive Director February 18, 2012

    By Kellen Russoniello, George Washington University Law student and NORML Legal Intern

    The recent push for implementing drug testing for potential welfare recipients across several states has revealed at least two things: 1. The policy is not economically sound; and 2. It really brings out the hypocrisy in some elected officials.

    Last summer, Florida implemented a law requiring all welfare applicants to submit to a mandatory drug test before receiving any benefits (Applicants had to pay the $30 for the test themselves, only to be reimbursed later if they passed. For more information, see this NORML blog post.). Not surprisingly, the program was brought to a quick halt. Back in October of 2011, a federal judge ruled that the Florida drug testing law was unconstitutional.

    Further, in the few months that the program was up and running, it was shown that only 2% of welfare applicants tested positive for drugs. About 9% of the general population reports using drugs in the past month. So much for Governor Rick Scott’s theory that the poor use drugs more often than the rest of the populace.

    Even more striking is the amount of money that Florida lost from this poorly designed policy. The Tampa Bay Online estimated that $3,400 to $8,200 in savings would be recognized every month from drug testing welfare applicants. As it turns out, the program is estimated to have cost Florida over $200,000. From any perspective, this policy can be regarded as a failure.

    Despite the lessons that can be learned from Florida’s debacle, several states are still considering implementing programs to subject their impoverished population to drug tests. The Huffington Post reported that twelve states attempted passing legislation in 2011 that would require drug tests for welfare applicants. Florida, Missouri, and Arizona were the only three that succeeded. However, Pennsylvania has just begun a pilot program in Schuylkill County that subjects certain applicants to drug tests. By tailoring their laws to apply only to applicants that have aroused reasonable suspicion, these states are hoping to avoid constitutional problems like those that ultimately invalidated the Florida law and a similar Michigan law in 2000 (which was affirmed in 2003). Several states have also tried to drug test those who seek unemployment benefits, state employees, and private sector employees, including the passage of an Indiana law that requires drug testing for those in a state job-training program.

    When pressed, legislators that support this policy try to justify their position by claiming that the taxpayers should not subsidize drug addiction. But taxpayers pay for much more than just welfare. Some of their money goes towards paying their legislators’ salaries. Wouldn’t this same rationale justify drug testing legislators? This has been the tactic of many Democratic state legislators to thwart Republican efforts to test welfare applicants. In fact, a Republican State representative in the Indiana General Assembly recently pulled a bill after another representative amended it to include drug testing for legislators. The bill was reintroduced and passed by the Indiana General Assembly the following week, which included a section requiring legislators to submit to random drug tests. Missouri and Tennessee currently have bills that would require legislators to submit to drug tests. These were introduced in reaction to a slew of bills aimed at requiring drug tests on different areas of the population. It seems that the legislators who want to drug test the poor aren’t really convinced of the merits of the program when applied to themselves.

    Hopefully, state politicians will come to their senses as knowledge about the failure of Florida’s policy becomes more well-known. But given this country’s track record on drug policy, I wouldn’t recommend holding your breath.

    To see a hilarious summary of Florida’s drug-test-the-poor policy, watch this Daily Show clip, which includes Florida State Representative Scott Plakon’s and Governor Rick Scott’s reactions to being asked to take a drug test.

    72 Responses to “Florida’s Drug-Testing of the Poor Proves a Failure, but Some States Still Want to Follow their Example”

    1. Anonymous says:

      Will alcohol be on the list of drugs tested?

    2. Herbert Boone says:

      What about tobacco it has been proven to kill?

    3. Jim says:

      The war on terror has apparently failed. Parts of “government” are still terrorizing its own citizenry.

      And over the *safest medicine known to man.*

      It is an absurdity, a travesty in this day and age.

    4. Jose says:

      I want to know the number of welfare applicants before and after implementation of this policy to see whether a good number of drug-using welfare applicants were deterred from applying due to the fact that they knew they would (1) fail the drug test, (2) be on record as failing a drug test, and (3) have to give up $30. I’m certainly fine with people using marijuana (and probably most other drugs as well), but I don’t want to be forced to financially support other people’s drug use.

    5. Theft of a persons right to control their own body is wrong. Theft of another persons money via taxation to pay for somebody to take a drug test so that they can benefit from government forced redistribution is also wrong.

      Moral of the story? Government breaks your legs, then steals the money to buy you crutches from somebody else and pats themselves on the back for a job “well done”.

    6. moldy says:

      I also heard that they want to test seniors before they get their SS check. Haha let’s see how that flys.

    7. Joel: the other Joel says:

      Florida puts the “SS” in piss.
      Such a weird program.

      I was right, Governor Rick Scott is a piss boy.

    8. fishcreekbob says:

      How do we know we’re not being scanned right now. What alls in this pc?

    9. Potimism says:

      I feel the gov is gonna keep on being critical on mj until something really bad happens. I predict one day that med mj patients and activist might riot and then maybe the gov will ease restrictions or even legalize it. I know one way or the other it will become legal, we just have to put more effort and if there has to be riots(which I will not be part of), I believe will be the turning point in legalizing mj. In fact I am starting to believe that might be the only way.

    10. Zuke says:

      Eh, while it may not work well, and cannabis should obviously just be legal and hence not tested for, I do understand the rational behind it in reference to commonly abused and fairly dependence-inducing drugs.

      I mean, the war on drugs as a whole is obviously an utter failure and has done so, so much damage, but the fact is that addiction is still a very real thing (and one that we should be dedicating resources and research to remedying as much as possible).

      It’s also true that no one can make an individual who has a dependance issue go and seek help; anyone who’s familiar with the issue can tell you that unless someone is ready to quit no one can make them do so, but the problem is that if they’re still having such an issue that they can’t remain clean long enough to pass drug testing, chances are until they get better the government providing aid for them is going to do nothing but drain resources.

      Addiction by its very nature is never satisfied, so any aid provided will likely either end up somehow providing drugs that will be quickly gone, or simply freeing up even more of the individual’s assets so they can use them on their drug of choice rather than on actual necessities. No matter what, if someone is truly in the depths of addiction, until they begin to get back on their feet no amount of aid will actually help them.

      Don’t get me wrong; I have the utmost sympathy for anyone in that situation. I’ve been there, and I’ve met many others who have been as well, and I realize what a miserable scourge addiction is, but at the same time having experienced addiction I also know that no matter how good one’s intentions are, most of the time the urge to use overcomes any intentions of using the help one receives on legitimate uses. As I said, until one gets better providing them monetary aid is basically akin to taking that money and pouring it down a bottomless pit. Those dealing with addiction need understanding and help to recover in any form that works for them, but just providing for them and leaving it at that probably isn’t that help.

      So while the whole drug testing thing may not work, and ultimately I severely doubt drug testing in any form is the way to go in any situation, I do realize why people believe in it. Actually, there are probably a number of people who just hate drug users and don’t like poor individuals and simply wish ill will on them, but there are always going to be people like that.

    11. […] Florida’s Drug-Testing of the Poor Proves a Failure, but Some States Still Want to Follow their Ex… By Kellen Russoniello, George Washington University Law student and NORML Legal Intern The recent push for implementing drug testing for potential welfare recipients across several states has revealed at least two things: 1. The policy is not economically sound; and 2. It really brings out the hypocrisy in some elected officials. Last summer, Florida implemented a law requiring all welfare applicants to submit to a mandatory drug test before receiving any benefits (Applicants had to pay the $30 for the test themselves, only to be reimbursed later if they passed. […] […]

    12. Joe Nickelsack says:

      Yeah! Lets have Random(Reagan)drug testing for Alcohol, and the test can detect alcohol used in the last thirty days.No second chances, You’re fired!!! Same for tobacco.Hell lets just make it for anything that gives us(the government)the ability to screw you.Hell lets have Random drug testing for anyone who holds a U.S. Drivers license.This country needs to kill off this virus that plagues us before it gets any worse.First off we need to get rid of the Police state in the work place. That’s the worst part of Prohibition, it’s gives the Feds the ability to screw us out of our livelyhoods.Yeah whats good for the goose is good for the gander.Lets turn their workplace into a Police state and see how they like it…Yeah, what goes around comes around you cocksuckers…and I’m feeling good Today.Have a great day America!!!

    13. Brian says:

      These Government workers who support this program, should also have to take a surprise test. Lets see how many can truly pass.

    14. Jim says:

      One who studies history for long enough discovers a pattern that is undeniable.

      When people are harmed and abused by their rulers who justify their behavior, excuse their own misbehavior, by citing what is UNJUST, UNREASONABLE policy as their excuse, they revolt. When people get fed up, they revolt.

      The safest medicine known to man.
      The safest medicine known to man.

      Persecuted by the most unnecessary, overpriced, ineffective and constitution irrelevant parts of the what is so-called “leadership,” people revolt.

      When people get fed up, they revolt.

      Occupy Wall Street was the beginning of a change, the sort that is large enough in organization to serve as a sign, a billboard, of public outrage.

      Unjust policy enforced in a draconian, unreasonable, and wasteful manner over–the safest medicine known to man–a survival companion to man as much as the dog–can only end in a victory for the voice of reason. And of justice.

      The safest medicine known to man
      vs.
      The most unjust, ineffective, costly attempt to control personal behavior, based on lies.

      It has to end because you can’t sustain a lie forever. -Dr. Lester Grinspoon

      When people get fed up, they revolt.

    15. Jim says:

      Drug tests are a sham, a waste of money.

      The only drug with still detectable after only one or two days, is Cannabis, which is the safest medicine known to man.

      People can take meth, crack, heroin and pass a urine test after a day or two.

      Only one drug is actually being tested for and it happens to be the safest medicine known to man.

      From a scientific and ethical standpoint, drug tests are a total waste of money.

      First, the hardest drugs are eliminated from the body too quickly to be tested for; a day’s abstinence is enough to “pass” the test.

      Secondly, it is a violation of privacy that is uncalled for.

      Drug testing corporations exist on a corrupt and unscientific business model. It’s a giant waste of money handed over to people who neither improve public safety nor prove who is competent to perform their job.

      Test the blood alcohol of commercial pilots, by all means.

      Test thousands of citizens for drugs, of which only marijuana (the safest medicine known to man) is detectable after a day…and it is a government sponsored, government misappropriation of funds to a special interest. Expensive. Pointless. Government corruption.

    16. NewOldSalt says:

      I really wish reformers would not fall in the trap the Dupont’s and DrugFree.org’s of the world have set. They want EVERYONE drug tested, it makes for a better way to spread shame and shove money in their own pockets.

      One of the few things the DrugFree.org types agree with reformers on is that every one should be tested, reformers who call for drug testing legislators (or anyone else) are pawns.

      People who have problematic use do not need to be tested:
      1. it’s obvious, or
      2. it’s hidden well, but concerns them so much they share their need for help with someone else

      Everyone else who does not engage in problematic use should be left alone.

      Zuke speaks to the need to legalize so we can regulate drugs. People who truly are addicted should be going to medical personnel and not spending their money in the black market.

      However, where we differ is how we classify “addicts.” This is not the forum to engage in that conversation.

      The public has been brainwashed such that every time there is an accident the TV/radio/newspaper morons always love to say that those involved will be tested for drugs. More money in Dupont’s pockets! But notice how we never hear the results, except in the beyond minuscule percentage of cases where someone did have days/weeks old by-products in his/her system?

      Oil rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico? TEST them ALL for DRUGS!!! we hear in every newscast. [LONG PAUSE LASTING YEARS] … still haven’t heard how those tests came out. Hm, how about testing those companies for fraud, waste, greed, incompetence, carelessness? And testing those journalists for fear mongering or accepting bribes from evil forces in govt.

    17. Ron Paul 2012 says:

      Napoleon said never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence.

      Sadly though Florida’s governor Rick Scott is clearly incompetent. I believe it is a pathological hatred of the poor that guides him :(

    18. Paul Pot says:

      Laws like this make people slaves.
      We so obviously live in a fascist state.
      Remember when an Italian TV show invited 50 politicians to a debate and when they did their make up they drug tested the swabs and 22% of them were positive to pot and 8% were positive to cocaine. Their politicians were doing drugs at a hight rate than the community.
      Would that be the same in the US do you suppose?

    19. HjemmeBrygger says:

      If the needy don’t get any wellfare money, they will have to resort to crime to get money to survive. This will cost the tax-payers, the society, and the needy people much more money than giving them wellfare money.
      If they get a criminal record, they may loose their right to wote, which in turn may result in less votes for legalization.
      Such a policy must be turned down both for human, financial, social, and political reasons.

    20. NagaSadhu says:

      First they enacted prohibition law based on racism and greed (competition against hemp).

      Secondly, not satisified with the results outright prohibition they introduced a cash cow called “asset forfeiture”.

      The war against people via Nature’s God giving plant is a government exercise in no hold’s barred weaponry.

      Including kick the door down and shoot if necessary or not.

    21. claygooding says:

      Does it make you wonder how the government picked the most therapeutic/ecologically beneficial plant on Earth as their poster child for the war on drugs,,I wonder how many facepalms that decision has caused.

    22. Joe says:

      I totally support this. If you cant afford basic necessaries such as food and utilities you shouldnt be smoking or doing any kind of drug. If you need it for medicine that bad move to another state.

    23. Ray DiPasquale says:

      Here is the poop scoop on Scott. His sold all his shares to his wife in a urine testing company so he can legally make his own 70 million dollars he spent on becoming governor (for a job that pays $100,000 a year) back and guess what they have the state contract for the welfare drug testing. Gee, I wonder how that happened? This is the same guy who was president of a healthcare company that was found guilty of the biggest medicare fraud in the history of this country, but he did not know that his company was doing these type of things. The people of Florida will wakeup someday when it’s too late and find out the other side of Scott. Time will reveal all of his side deals to get back his money.
      The people of the state of Florida have to quit watching T.V. and stop beleiving in deception in political ads. It is freaking sad that the poor always pay more for the greed of others. On top of that the people that have paid the $35.00 to be tested only a very small percentage have been positive.
      Maybe all the governors want to do the same scheme in their state.
      Drug testing is a self incriminating chemical loyalty oath that violates the fourth amendment unless you are stupid enough to voluntarily give that right up.
      Wakeup America!

    24. Jim says:

      “WHAT IS THE SAFEST MEDICINE KNOWN TO MAN?”

      There is only one answer.

      In 1971 scientists and doctors discovered that use of THC leads to an almost 50% decrease in intraocular pressure. That use alone, for glaucoma is enough to qualify it as medicine and yet it is a palliative for numerous other ailments. And the so-called leadership deems Cannabis to be in the same category as alcohol and lab-mixed pharma, both of which kill almost a million people every year.

      “WHAT IS THE SAFEST MEDICINE KNOWN TO MAN?”

      Answer the question or risk looking 1) ignorant 2) deceitful

      “WHAT IS THE SAFEST MEDICINE KNOWN TO MAN?”

      This is not a question regarding recreation or ‘partying.’ It is far more important and it reveals how ingrained the corruption and misinformation has become in our land.

      “WHAT IS THE SAFEST MEDICINE KNOWN TO MAN?”

      hint: any answer besides Cannabis is wrong, is a lie, or the candidate is not up to issues that affect all people.

      “WHAT IS THE SAFEST MEDICINE KNOWN TO MAN?”

    25. Jim says:

      Don’t trust your local drinking water unless it is tested.

      Don’t eat the trash that fast food dishes out by factory farming.

      Don’t trust any insurance company, period.

      Don’t trust any elected officials, no matter the color of their skin

      ASK, “WHAT IS THE SAFEST MEDICINE KNOWN TO MAN?”

      “WHY IS THE USE OR POSSESSION OF THIS MEDICINE PUNISHED AS HARSHLY AS VIOLENT CRIMES OR CRIMES OF THEFT OR DESTRUCTION?”

      “WHAT IS THE SAFEST MEDICINE KNOWN TO MAN?”

      See what they say. The response, or lack of one, is the answer–regarding that corruption most transparent and damaging in every day life, how it interferes with people’s choices in their own well-being.

      “WHAT IS THE SAFEST MEDICINE KNOWN TO MAN?”

    26. […] NORML Blog, Marijuana Law ReformDid you like this? Share it:Tweet Tags: Drugtesting, Example, failure, Florida's, Follow, Poor, Proves, some, States, still, their, Want […]

    27. somebody says:

      ok its a good idea to test for drugs on people going to get well fare of they can afford to toke sniff or inject then thay shouldnt be getting help from my taxes plus most jobs want you to past a drug test so we should make sure they are going to be working on getting a job. this is from a huge supporter of your rights and the legalization of mj i just dont believe in hand outs if you dont got nothing get your ass out and make something.

    28. Ol' JW says:

      People should not be afraid of the government, Government should be afraid of the people!

      Only YOU can vote out the bad apples and vote in the good apples!

    29. If you live in Connecticut and want to end marijuana prohibition in our state, please take a minute to visit http://www.ctprimaryproject.com.

      Please pass this on to anyone you know in Connecticut!

    30. What a waste of tax payer money to have all the tests. It will only leave more desperate poor people with no money who will be willing to break the law to put some food on the table.

    31. This is not my America says:

      Bottom line. the drug war only exists to give government control of the people they rule.

      Freedom? I dont think so folks.

    32. Now we are taking this model nationwide on the unemployed. Its sick. This is another right of personal privacy going down the drain.

    33. John says:

      Fight for Indiana! Fight for the entire USA!

      Alcohol, Prescription narcotics & cigarettes kills citizens, I’ve never seen or heard “Death by Marijuana” I don’t believe it even exists.

      I am bi-polar with A.D.D., Marijuana is the only cure for me. I refuse to jam pills down my throat as it happened to me when I was a kid, Ritalin. Ritalin and/or any other narcotic pills will screw you up bad.

      It is time to end this. speak out, yell out, and legalize Marijuana, how many deaths are caused by alcohol, narcotics & tobacco? Find your answer here http://drugwarfacts.org/cms/?q=node/30

      What ever passes, medical marijuana should not only be for cancer patients and other serious related diseases, but for diseases like bi-polar and A.D.D. and much more.

      It’s our time to speak out now!

      California and other residing states that allow medical marijuana are very lucky, unlike Indiana.

      I live in Indiana and must buy my medical marijuana illegally and take hefty precautions for the disease that I never asked for. If I get caught, I would be doubled rammied, won’t get help for my disease because I would be in jail, Jail doctors come in drunk “i know this from bad experience”, look at you and send you back to your cell. And then possibly commit suicide.

      It is time to end this now…

      I had emailed Representative Peter J. Visclosky and received a response.

      Thank you for contacting me to express your support for H.R. 2306, the Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2011. I appreciate hearing from you.

      Specific to your concerns, Rep. Frank has introduced H.R. 2306, a measure that would remove marijuana and its primary psychoactive constituent tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) from the five schedules of the federal Controlled Substances Act of 1970. Currently, all varieties of marijuana are defined as illicit Schedule I controlled substances, defined as possessing a high potential for abuse and no currently accepted medical use in treatment.

      H.R. 2306 was referred to the House Committees on Energy and Commerce and the Judiciary, where it is currently pending consideration. The measure has 20 cosponsors and a companion measure has not been introduced in the Senate.

      Thank you again for contacting me. Be assured that I will continue to monitor the progress of H.R. 2306 with your views in mind. Do not hesitate to let me know if you have any other questions or concerns.

      Sincerely,

      Peter J. Visclosky
      Member of Congress

    34. Anonymous says:

      If any of these republicans get into office they will want ( force ) everyone into drug testing . Yeah, I’ve voted for republicans & even for, Arnold Swarzenenneger but these candidates are the worse for reforming our marijuana laws .
      Romney said to workers at a supply company the he would be sensitive . ” I’ll listen ” he said to a few dozen workers and i will listen to business people & to working people & to folks across the Country to understand what’s going on in their lives . ”
      http://videosift.com/video/Mitt-Romney-turns-his-back-on-a-medical-marijuana-patient

    35. JD says:

      Meet Mitt Romney who stated, ” i will listen to business people and to working people and to folks across the Country to understand what is going on in their lives ” .” I will listen “, said he .
      http://videosift.com/video/Mitt-Romney-turns-his-back-on-a-medical-marijuana-patient

    36. Douglas says:

      They just pass or trying to pass a law in Texas to receive unemployment u have to take a piss test Soon One day u will have to take a piss test for getting your (D-I-D) Or buy food at the store. No cash transaction. Unless u have there mark on you u wont be able to buy or work or any thing. Sound craze stop laughing and just look at all the rights we have lost do to the war on cannabis. They can take your home from u on the world of a covet drug dealer. Every thing our Fathers fault for in ww2 we are loosing

    37. Bbbababart says:

      First we have Crist making huge laws against an incredibly valuable plant. Then we have Scott pulling this crap. Don’t these people have any clue about history and the constitution?

      I suggest that we give all polititians a drug test and if no THC is found, then they are not permitted to run because they have no vision for our future – only their own. They will not be true public servants. This type of requirement is not uncommon in human history when selecting officials. I do not feel it is unreasonable or irresponsible to suggest it here.

      George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and a host of other founding fathers of this nation grew and smoked cannabis. The constitution was a beautiful document and freedom is a beautiful thing. People like Crist and Scott are traitors and, in some respects, even terrorists because they destroy freedom instead of supporting it. They destroy the infrastucture of the government by making laws that cannot be respected by those who are governed. How stupid can you get? People like this are killing the country.

      Don’t talk to me about cannabis being dangerous. 12,000 years of use has shown no proof of that.

      OMG! Cannabis should be a schedule 1 drug because there is the possibility that it might give someone bronchitis? Give me a freaking break. So I should lose my job, my rights, and go to prison for years because I grow or posess a plant that might give me bronchitis? Something is very wrong here.

      Legalize cannabis and maybe more people will be able to keep their jobs so we don’t have to pay them welfare or support their imprisonment.

      I would be more inclined to vote for a law that turns down obese people for welfare. Many of them could live off their fat for six months anyway. I know that comment sounds cruel, but their obesity probably costs us more than any cannabis user could ever hope to. Would I ever really vote for that kind of law? No. But it makes more sense than the crap that Crist and Scott have handed out. Bronchitis or heart attack – what do you think needs more attention? Do five cheeseburgers cure cancer? Is there a risk of bronchitis if I eat cannabis for a cure or just smear the oil on my skin cancer?

      How can the laws against cannabis be considered moral?

      I wonder how long it will take…

      Let’s get a grip, people! Fix these broken laws, broken politicians, and our broken constitution.

      The laws against cannabis are destroying this country. We need positive creativity. We do not need traitors like Crist and Scott finding new ways to screw us. It is obvious we need someone in office who is for the people who make the money – not the ones who collect and distribute it at their leisure.

    38. Bbbababart says:

      Is it my computer or is the “Nuggetry” website as linked below damaged and nonfunctional?

    39. bill says:

      I work in an industry that drug tests ,few of us in the industry consider it constitutional but few of us consider the country we live in to be the united states any longer .I agree to not use drugs to work in my industry because of the nature of our work.We still have to put up with the alcohalics who are generally untrustworthy ,gone are the days where pot smoking welders and craftsman built our nations power plants typically outperforming their non “user” coworkers.
      I just finishes reading the KIte Runner ,I can’t help feeling that our right wigers are rapidly becoming like the taliban but with evan more intrusive way to watch out for the noncorming country men cyber spying and chemical testing.
      The only option we have is to fight them before they become the american taliban fight anyway you can ,this could be a fight to the death.

    40. This is not my America says:

      How long will it take for people of the this country to realize our government is a breeding place for criminals ,corruption and tyranny?

      Our founding fathers may well have constructed our constitution with forethought due to the use of cannabis. Government knows that when cannabis is used is causes you to think’outside the box’. It causes you to question everything.

      Now government denies people the experience of cannabis. Our very way of life is being slow dismantled. The PTB do not want us to be free as the constitution was designed. A free people is not in the interests of those who would want a self serving rule over the people.

      Government studies(READ CIA) has shown cannabis makes it difficult to interogate someone under its influence.

      Our government is a burden on society. it cost all of us more money than any drugproblem,health problem,crimes,natural disastersect combined. Our hard earned money is wasted by these crooks in office. That money represents our life….life taken by these ruling thugs . Time we can’t get back.

      How much if your time worth? You can’t get get anymore. It should be the most valuable thing you posses,yet we let these theives take it from us for their own good.

      Prohibition is but just one ‘law’ thatkeeps you under their thumb . prohibition is but one law that they use to take your life(your time) from you.

      When are WE THE PEOPLE going to wake up and realize that constitution was made to keep tyrants from taking our time, our life from us? When are WE THE PEOPLE going to see that these tyrrants over years have / are stripping this protection from us?

      Stop the tyrrants! Stop government! Put it/them in a little box and control them or we will never again be free!

    41. This is not my America says:

      “It astonishes me to find… [that so many] of our countrymen… should be contented to live under a system which leaves to their governors the power of taking from them the trial by jury in civil cases, freedom of religion, freedom of the press, freedom of commerce, the habeas corpus laws, and of yoking them with a standing army. This is a degeneracy in the principles of liberty… which I [would not have expected for at least] four centuries.” – Thomas Jefferson to William Stephens Smith, 1788

      “I know of no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves, and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education.” – Thomas Jefferson, letter to William C. Jarvis, September 28, 1820

      “There has never been a golden age of liberty, and there never will be. People who value freedom will always have to defend it from those who claim the right to wield power over others.” – David Boaz

    42. Dave Evans says:

      Keep breaking the law by arresting innocent people, booking them on marijuana lies. You’re going to end up paying for this abuse… It has been going on for generations, but the bill has come due. Society isn’t stupid enough to believe the lies anymore.

    43. This is not my America says:

      Your time is what is of value…..
      http://educate-yourself.org/cn/strawmanillusion02apr10.shtml

    44. […] Florida’s Drug-Testing of the Poor Proves a Failure, but Some States Still Want to Follow their Ex… […]

    45. Jim says:

      For over 40 years, scientists and doctors cannot deny that the use of Cannabis lowers intraocular pressure by up to 50% in patients with glaucoma and even in people who do not even have glaucoma.
      This is undeniably important as a means to slow or ameliorate the inevitable blindness caused by congenital glaucoma.

      And yet, Cannabis is placed in Schedule 1, an arbitrary classification system–invented, made-up, fabricated, by rogue departments whose arbitrary, unscientific, patently dishonest claim that such classifications indicate “no medical use.”

      http://www.ukcia.org/research/Thereputic/Therapeut.htm

      There are at least a dozen illnesses that are remedied, ameliorated, alleviated, by the use of Cannabis. But only ONE should be necessary to remove Cannabis from schedule 1.

      Yet, this intellectually dishonest and corrupt classification exists to this day, and elected officials are so scared to even discuss the matter, that they prove their character is unworthy of any kind of sanctioned leadership.

      Schedule 1 happens to also mean that the use of these medicines are punished the most harshly, in the most unjust and absurdly corrupt and self-enriching ways, for courts, lawyers, police, federal agents, drug testing companies. And profitable for pharma, petrol, and drug dealers.

      All based on non-scientific, privacy-invading, fraudulent claims.

      “OMG look at human rights violations over there in China and Sudan! They’re so bad!” Look that way!

      While over here, in the “land of the free, the land of opportunity” people are crucified and dragged around through public streets for something that is 1) no one else’s business, 2) something that is not a crime 3) something that harms no other people but perhaps the user, if at all.

      It is the safest medicine known to man. It does not have to be smoked by combustion and inhalation, even though there is no link to Cannabis and lung cancer, as there is with tobacco.

      It does not have to be purchased from unscrupulous degenerates but the government makes that so for many people. And then they label those people as the evil ones.

      It should never have been made “illegal” in the first place.

      Its use should not be punished in our own justice system, regardless of how one or a million deny the truth for self-enrichment or lack of critical thinking. Even if been duped by generations of deliberate lies, misinformation, and propaganda, this policy is a disgrace and a sham.

      Critical thinking–thinking for yourself, not believing anything and everything that is told to people, is wholly lacking in this country. “Education” is rote memorization of facts to be forgotten when a real education should provide people with the means to act on the best interests of themselves, their families, the best interests of their fellow neighbors and countrymen.

      Cannabis prohibition is a textbook example of government corruption that would disappear, be non-existent, in a world void of the self-interest and self-enrichment specifically created from actions which damage other people and their well-being.

    46. Bbbababart says:

      Bill, how would you suggest we fight them? I’m interested in any input. Certainly violence is out of the question. Unless you want to do it one at a time like in the 60’s. But I don’t want to act like LBJ. I’m not into evil.

      I’ve never seen a NORML display at a festival or any craft show or farmers market. Perhaps we should intensify the organization to make this happen.

      I can hear it now – “We don’t want to subject our children to this.” I have several answers for that statement. “Nobody wants to subject their child to caner either, but it happens. Cannabis is no longer a joke. It is real, serious, medicine that has been swept under the rug for too long. Children’s lives can be saved with this plant. No child will die or suffer brain damage because of the molecules within it. It’s the laws against cannabis that kill people. Not the plant.”

      I’m asking that each and every state in this nation never again elect a politician who is opposed to the legalization of any strain of cannabis.

      We have to get this country back in line. Freedom is the goal! I’m proud to see a lot of people beginning to wake up. Freedom from foreign fuel. Freedom from chemical crap. Freedom from traitors… But not enough people are doing it. We need more face.

      My position is that this country was founded on the ideals of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We can never lose sight of that. We must be on a constant vigil to balance these things.

      Since 911 there has been such a frenzy of terrorist freakouts that our internal terrorists have begun to come out unnoticed. That is a total imbalance created by our own internal forces. Please stop electing people who support the drug war against cannabis. They are destroying this country.

      Please do what you can to help us get a grip on our freedoms again.

    47. This is not my America says:

      You want to put freedom back into this country? You want to put the power in the hands of WE THE PEOPLE?

      STOP BEING DIVIDED !

      Republican?Democrate? Left/Right? Male /Female? Black/White? Ford/Chevy? Greenbay/Bears? ABC/CBS?

      Don’t ya all get it? We are divided on every issue…every question….every action…evry choice. They create the problems and provide the answers when we react.

      Those in power what all of you divided. When we fight eachother, they win.When we fight each other we give them power over us to solve the problems. They create the need for them.

      A people divided is a people conquered.

      UNITED WE STAND, DIVIDED WE FALL!

      WE HAVE FALLEN !

      GET UP! WAKE UP!

    48. Bbbababart says:

      Alright, This Is Not My America – let’s do something. The problem with getting cannabis legalized is that there is some truth to the statements made about it making people a little slow to act on a problem such as this. There is a petition to legalize it out in many, if not all states. These petitions aren’t getting signed by a huge number of people who sit back, smoke a bowl, and bitch about the laws. We need to find a way to motivate them to at least sign up. That’s why I suggested we start putting up booths at various civil gatherings – just like cell phone companies and vetran contribution orgs. They don’t have anything that closely resembles artistic products – but there they are. At least cannabis has the ability to open doors of creativity. NORML should have every right to have a booth at many of these events. We could even have a section of the booth dedicated to voter registration and recommendations for whom to vote into office.

      That just made me think… If you get busted for an ounce or more in Florida, you become a felon and can’t vote to legalize it! Now THERE is an interesting scam… Next we will have drug testing at the polls so that if you test positive, you can’t vote. I can see that happening. If it does, though, I can also see buildings starting to blow up and the real revolution beginning.

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