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31

Oct

2010

Linda Milazzo: LA's Sheriff Baca Stirs Fear Against Marijuana Days Before The Election
Sunday, 31 October 2010 18:55
by Linda Milazzo

All through the George W. Bush administration, Americans were fed a steady diet of fear, strategically orchestrated by Bush and Cheney to promote their political agenda. Americans were scared into supporting war. They were frightened into buying masking tape. They were jolted by elevated color codes. They were unnerved about flying on planes. And much much more...

For eight long years Bush and Cheney were masters of mania, preying on a nervous nation through well-timed machinations. What coincidence that terrorist threats would arise before elections and critical legislation. Even Osama bin Laden and Ayman Al Zawahiri would broadcast messages that helped push G.W.'s platform.

Using unjustified fear is an abuse of governance. Sadly for Los Angeles, Lee Baca, its Sheriff of twelve years who is running unopposed in this election, is employing the abusive fear tactic. Mere days before California's November 2nd election, whose ballot includes Proposition 19, which if passed, would regulate, control and tax marijuana, Sheriff Baca is using free broadcast media to strike fear in voters against the Proposition he vehemently opposes.

As Baca's luck would have it, Halloween arrives just two days before the November 2nd election. To frighten voters against Prop 19, Baca ordered his sheriffs to confiscate marijuana edibles from legal dispensaries and remove them from circulation so they're not distributed to trick-or-treaters on Halloween. Baca then used the confiscated edibles as part of his free anti-Prop 19 broadcast media blitz.

Are Baca's actions ethical - or even legal? Is it legal and ethical to confiscate vendor's merchandise and then use it as a vehicle for free media air time to push a political agenda - an obvious political agenda that the Sheriff refuses to admit?

Here's one of the videos showing the confiscated edibles and fear tactics Baca is using:


LA sheriff's warn of pot-laced treats from 89.3 KPCC on Vimeo.



Ten days ago there was an incident of three boys in Huntington Beach, California, who were admitted to the hospital after ingesting marijuana cookies. The ingestion was accidental after a parent failed to put the cookies away. Of course that was a serious oversight, and thankfully the boys are okay.


But let's get real here. Every home has dangers. Homes can contain medications, alcoholic beverages, toxic cleaning agents, sharp cutlery, swimming pools, balconies, staircases, bunk beds, bathtubs, hot stoves, storage bins, razors, sharp tools, lethal weapons like rifles and handguns and, tragically, abusive adults. Left unattended and unmonitored, myriad calamities can happen. Edible pot may come in attractive packages, but as long as it's properly stored, there's no more danger than that which exists already in most homes. And truthfully, there is still not a single reported case of anyone dying from pot.

California is broke. It needs revenue. And it needs to move into the 21st century with legitimate legislation. If Sheriff Lee Baca and Dianne Feinstein and the others who oppose Prop 19 want to keep California from moving forward, they do significantly more harm to the state than legalizing marijuana. America is sliding backward in every area. We're a laughing stock to the world for sacrificing progression for regression. Not legalizing marijuana is as absurd as not using every available resource to push forward a clean, green economy.

If Baca doesn't want to smoke pot, he doesn't have to. If Baca doesn't want to eat edibles, he doesn't have to. But that's no reason to use underhanded tactics to prevent wise legislation from passing - legislation that will generate income California desperately needs.

Baca, himself, with an annual salary of $284,183, doesn't suffer from lack of income. He suffers from lack of wisdom.

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