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Rich Lucibella
December 17, 1998, 04:22 AM
I drove 9 hours back from NC to South FL today (okay, it's an 11 hour drive). I was stopped twice...SC and FL. Good guys in both cases...one warning and one ticket; both gave me a break; both were gentlemen.

But here's the issue. Both cops asked if I was carrying any large sums of money (among other questions). This struck me as strange...naturally I said, "Nope, just waht's in my pocket"....course what's in my pocket on a road trip might be considered \"large" by them; I'm not sure.

Now I'm not looking for a "flame the law" thread here....I hadn't shaved in 3 days; was wearing a heavy leather Harley jacket and driving a semi-expensive sports car registered to a Florida corp. But I'm wondering if this is becoming a standard question in highway stops when there's a bit of suspicion?
Rich

Bushwhacker
December 17, 1998, 07:29 AM
Rich were you on I-95?
In recent years there has been alot of drug traficking along I-95 and this is where they LEO catch alot The money part well goes hand in hand but I've seen them search tractor-trailers to m/c's and the way the person is dressed has alot to do with it. I interested in what the LEO members have to say. I got stopped one time on I-10 going to fla. and the two deputies took my car and the trailer apart.I think the time of year had something to do with it Mardi-gra location just east of New Orleans.

[This message has been edited by FLYERM14 (edited 12-17-98).]

.
December 17, 1998, 07:58 AM
Profile Bro, profile. Keep it low, or drive a ratty old pickup truck. Large sums of cash is considered a target. It is one of the characteristics that fit the profile of an operative in the drug distribution industry. It also can be confiscated and depending on the circumstances may be forfeit to the enforcement agency, hence another enticing "funding" target. Local fella collects tractors and steam implements. He goes to auctions around the country, and usually carries $10-15K to these events for spot buys. He got stopped for a burned-out tail-light bulb, answered the questions truthfully, spent the evening in jail and 6-months and lots of legal fees to recover his cash. The banking industry's move to eliminate the use of cash, would generate better financial info and that would better profile illegal financial transactions (see the thread in DC's Forum)

Michael Carlin
December 17, 1998, 09:50 AM
Rich,

The question itself is a one way deal. You are anxious to get on your way, if you refuse to answer, the man takes your stuff apart. If you had said yes, the man takes your stuff apart.

If there is a large sum of cash, he will confiscate it on the spot and charge you with something.

Had he given you a Miranda warning? I ask because an affirmative answer will undoubtedly result in Mykl's friend's scenario.

This profile business is very violative of the right to move about freely. I am no defender of drug trafficking, but it appears to me that an enormous chunk of our rights are compromised in increasing efforts to prohibit drugs. This is in the name of public safety, (does this sound familiar?) and there is no one in the main stream willing to stand up and say prohibition does not seem to work.

Ah, well that is my rant for the day.

yours in marksmanship

michael

longhair
December 17, 1998, 01:07 PM
Michael, i agree w/ you. the rights we have forfeited because of the war on drug are many. now if you fit a certain "profile" that's probable cause to stop you. you're automatically guilty, as decribed in this thread about the guy that buys farm equipment. since when is it against the law to have money???? and i guess i fit some kind of profile w/ longhair, beard, etc., so when i get stopped, ( it's hard to drive 55 ) quite often i get "special" attention. now this is not always the case, but often enough. i choose to look they way i do, the way most people do, but if you're "pretty" like me you must be willing to take the heat for it.. :)

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fiat justitia

Rob Pincus
December 17, 1998, 05:55 PM
Okay, I may get flamed here, but:

LEOs are judgemental.

There I said it. I almost got arrested once because a local LEO pulled my over in a brand new Bronco with a California Temp Tag. I was about 2 miles from my house and I had just driven all the way back from California in about 40 hours. I looked like ****, I had a Glock in a shoulder holster under my jacket, which I told him about. This was before I was a credentialed LEO, but I had a permit. I had two longuns in racks in the back side windows.
the officer tried to tell me that I didn't live where my ID said I did and that the vehicle was illegal, since I was a Tennessee resident I couldn't have a truck with a california temp tag.

Obviously, the guy was all wrong, but I sorta understand where he was coming from. He called me in and one of his fellow officers recognized my name and showed up while he was trying to figure out waht to do. BTW- I had been going 55 in a 45, based on his expert opinion...he didn't even have radar!

I concur with the I-95 theory. especially if it was the S.C. officer who asked about the money. When I get pulled over with out of state tags on the East Coast I almost always get asked questions about the multitude of gear I have crammed into my vehicle. Where I am going? Am I travelling with any valuables. yada, yada. I am not ready to say that it is a big conspiracy to stop the flow of cash or to confiscate everything of value, but as an LEO, I understand that those are the kinds of questions that can lead to interesting answers and subsequent PC to do a search if the circumstances are suspicious. I don't like it, but it is reality.
I get pulled over a lot. The latest time was in West Virginia, but the officer wlaked up to the car and said, "Sir, can I see some ID, I'm giving you a warning." I like West Virginia!

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-Essayons

Kodiac
December 17, 1998, 07:24 PM
Rich fit into a "profile."
Scruffy guy with a nice car... must have money but not a profesional job. Yeah, that would have gotten you pulled over in Virgina as well. Especially on I-95. Richmond had been putting up Road Blocks all over the city last year. They didn't actually stop every one. But if you fit into a prophile you were waved to stop in a search area.
One day I was let through under scrutiny...
the next - I hadnt shaved either... I was waved over. The officer was proffesional enough I guess... for one violating my civil rights... Once I produced my badge I was okay to him. The us verses them mentality... I was waved to stop because of the Shotgun News on the back seat!
Yeah LEOs are judgemental... Innocent until proven guilty is fine in the court room... But as a cadet in the academy we were taught we never arrested or pulled over anyone who wasn't guilty. Admittedly I was the same way... If a guy didnt look right, fit a profile, or just looked like a jerk - I stopped him.
Now, I am one of THEM... and have been stopped many times. I wear a black jacket and blue jeans. I have a goatee. I even still drive like I am on duty (that is a bad habit I am trying to break). As a result, I am a menace to the public and the officer pulling me over is stopping my mad cap crime spree! Good Work Officer Pogue!

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Kodiac
Kenetic Defense Institute
[email protected]

Spectre
December 17, 1998, 07:55 PM
I have heard several times lately of areas that have enacted laws allowing the confiscation of large sums of money if the possessee cannot prove that it came from legitimate sources. No crimes charged, just pure theft and abrogation of your Constitutional rights. Personally- I tend to be a mite excitable- I tend to think like this: I am guaranteed the right, by statement and inference, to my property unless the government can prove I obtained it illegally. Anyone seeking to take away my Constitutional rights, by definition, would be a criminal. In this case, we have an armed criminal trying to rob me. Now, I don't want Rich to shut me down for any perceived suggestion of endorsement of tactics most would find questionable, but this is a case of armed robbery. I know how I would treat armed robbers.

[This message has been edited by Spectre (edited 12-18-98).]

DC
December 17, 1998, 08:32 PM
The problem is that mere possession of large amounts of cash is considered defacto evidence of wrongdoing and you must prove its legit, then it takes weeks to months to get it back and likely cost you a bundle in legal fees besides.
This us vs them mentality that LEO has is indicative of the rapid decline of this country and its not going to get better.

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"Quis custodiet ipsos custodes"

Art Eatman
December 17, 1998, 10:41 PM
I have read that in Louisiana, when they "arrest the money", 50% goes to the state treasury; 25% to the local state judge's office; and 25% to the arresting jurisdiction. You can then plead in the state judge's court for the return of your money. Good #$%@$ luck!

Low profile, low profile, low profile. That's reality, in this land of the free. I shave daily. Clean clothes. Plain-jane vehicle. Drive with traffic, generally two to seven mph above highway speed limits.

It aggravates me that a pro-cop guy like myself has to worry about that one percent (1/2%?)which might be overzealous Gestapo.

More and more states are passing reciprocity laws concerning concealed-carry permits. So far, the reports I've had indicate that when one is stopped for trivial traffic stuff, there is a "You're one of us" sort of reaction from most officers, when they see the CHL. There's a bit of hope.

About the only thing I know for Joe Citizen to do is keep on bitchin' to the elected types, at state & federal level. Unending pressure. Never quit, never!

And donate what you can to various pro-gun groups. Some are better than others, of course, but they add to our chorus.

Best regards to all...Art

Rich Lucibella
December 18, 1998, 01:18 AM
Wow-
Lot's of good comments here. Let me try to respond in general; I apologize for the length in advance.

I'm aware of the resurrection of 100 year old piracy laws which have been used to confiscate assets. I'm also aware of the abuses that have occured when expected asset forfeiture finds itself into an agency or LEO budget.

And, certainly, "profile" has something to do with my recent experience. OTOH, this is the US of A and I find it embarassing to explain to the uninitiated that you should dress up when on a trip; that you should not drive a sports or luxury car if you have earned one; that you should not walk around with your money in your pocket....all for fear of "looking" suspicious.

When stopped in SC, I was asked if I had any weapons...I stated a pistol in the glove box (legal in journey). For the officer's safety, I was asked out of the car....that's fair (he wasn't speeding, I was). I was never informed of my rights....rather I was engaged in a "casual" conversation as the officer wrote a warning for breaking the speed limit by +15mph.
"What kind of work do you do?"; "Where are you coming from?"; "Do you have any other weapons in the car?". "Do you have any alcohol or drugs in the car?". "Are you carrying any large sums of money?"

When I exited the vehicle, I locked it with the key remote and pocketed the key, waiting to see who I was dealing with. In response to his queries, I offered up a Mad Dog Pygmy Atak II on my belt (5" fixed blade)...he wasn't concerned. I assured him there wasn't even a beer in the car. When he asked about the $$, I explained that I'd been advised never to volunteer access to my auto but that he was welcome to search it.

The officer explained that it was SOP to call in the dogs when people refused to answer and let me go. All in all, he was a good guy who gave me a break and should be commended.

In FL I left the car for dinner. I was later pulled over at night. I immediately attached my seat belt when I saw the cherry top. He asked for my License and Reg. As I went to release the seat belt, I realized, I'd expose the 1911 on my hip. I explained the problem and the cop was alert but unphazed (FL is still Free America)...he was on my passenger side and only asked that I pull my jacket back to reveal the weapon before reaching for my wallet.

He never disarmed me...so, he obviously didn't mistrust me. He asked me to keep my hands on the wheel while he went back to his car. I turned all the interior lights on and complied. When he came back with a ticket (chopped 10mph off the speed), he asked why I was carrying a gun. "Because I can". He actually got a bit defensive in assuring me that that was acceptable. Then he popped the question, "Are you carrying a lot of money or something?". Again I got off with a break.

In short, good guys...questionable policies. That's the reason for my post.
Rich
ps: I'm carrying a .45, a fixed blade, a Sebeza. Got my emergency survival kit in the trunk. Do *I* sound like the type of guy who left town with $300 in his pocket? That's the *other* reason for my post.

VDoe
December 18, 1998, 09:12 AM
Just a little more info for those who travel I-95 through S.C. My brother-in-law was a State Trooper here for many years and I have several friends who are troopers. S.C. has a multi-jurisdictional "team" that patrols I-95 specifically using the "profile" method to try and spot drug runners. They do just as y'all have suggested...pull someone over for speeding or improper lights, then if they fit the profile or act overly nervous/agitated ask if they can search the car. I can't remember what they do if you refuse, but I can ask if someone wants to know.

This is a dangerous situation for the LEO on that team. I had a good friend, Mark Coates, who was on the team. He had pulled a man over for speeding on I-95 near the Hardeeville exit and he fit the profile y'all have been mentioning...scruffy, lot of stuff in the car, etc. The video camera in the patrol car caught all the action. Unfortunately, Mark used very bad judgment/technique when he searched the man, squatting down to search his legs/ankles. The man pushed Mark to the ground, drew out a .22 pistol and began firing. Some of the bullets were stopped by Mark's vest, but as he was drawing his .357 revolver he exposed his side and one .22 went into his side. Mark managed to fire once or twice, hitting the BG in the stomach (I believe), who subsequently stopped firing. Mark died in the helicopter on the way to the hospital. The BG lived, unfortunately.

Is the miniscule amount of drugs stopped through this type of aggressive "profiling" worth the risk to the LEO's life and the potential loss of our rights as American citizens? I don't know...I just don't know.

Chris

Spectre
December 18, 1998, 10:07 AM
I apologize if my prior post gave the impression that I am anti-LEO. I am not, and if I had not moved to be closer to my fiance years ago, I would be a police officer in Alabama right now. I do have serious problems with any who would abuse the power that has been entrusted to them. I am grateful for the chance to relate to the conscientious LEO who grace this forum.

Rob Pincus
December 18, 1998, 11:51 AM
I think that we shouldn't read too much into the question itself. After all, some people might not consider $1000 cash "large sums", and some people might think it is a king's ransom to have in your pocket. Many LEOs have a stadard battery of questions they ask to try to gather information, especially if you fit a "profile." An LEO might ask you if you've seen anybody suspicious, just to watch your response. Does this mean that they are trying to turn the population against itself? No.
In our county, we only put a dog on a car if we have already found or been told about drugs in a vehicle or there is a very compelling reason to suspect there are drugs present.

Along the line, several years ago, part of my job was to transport "large sums" of cash. It was all legal, but not simply associated with depositing it in the bank. For many reasons the owner of this corporation liked to do business in cash. It was pretty common for me to have $5000 or more in various pockets, as I often ride a motorcycle when the weather allows. Now, picture this:
Young guy, Harley painted with 2nd Amendment themes (skeleton arms holding desert eagles etc.,) with $10k in his pocket.
I got pulled over in this condition twice. Once I knew the officer, once I got a real hassle. Neither time was the cash mentioned, but I informed the officers of my firearm immediately, as is my habit. Is this low-profile, no. Would I do it today, probably not.

Unfortunately, I picked up some "bad" habits from my mentor who liked to do business in cash. Now, so do I. There is nothing like handing someone or receiving from some one a good old fashioned pile of money. Try paying a plumber in cash (some of them that are not independent won't be allowed to accept cash!), or go to the bank before you buy that next $1000+ item and count out the money in 100's and 50's in stead of writing a check. It is a completely different buying experience. Of course, don't do any transactions at the bank of $10K or more, or you'll have to fill out special forms at the bank. Several times I've made two or three trips in a day to avoid the $10K marker. Not to avoid any tax liability, but to keep from having to fill out the forms. I understand that the "cieling" on unexplained transactions might be lowered, rumor has it to less than $2500.
Rather insidiously the gov't has instilled a distrust of cash, but it is really unfounded. It is also not much more than skin deep for most people. After all, if there is someone that you don't really trust are you going to accept a check from them? No, of course not, but you'll take cash everytime, right? Cash is good. Cash is fun. Cash is your friend. Checking fees are bad, credit card interest is bad.

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-Essayons

NAD
December 18, 1998, 02:00 PM
It seems to me that if questioned by an LEO during a traffic stop as to whether I have large sums of cash or other valuables I would say no regardless if I had 10 or 10,000 dollars in cash. I am not obligated to incriminate myself nor am I under any oath to tell the truth. If the Leo searches my car and finds $10,000 in cash it wouldn't have mattered if I had lied about it or was truthfull. It would still be confiscated.

Unless things have changed, I always thought that money was "legal tender" and must be accepted for payment of goods and services in this country. I am always annoyed by certain businesses not accepting cash as payment or stipulating they cannot provide change for anything over a 20 dollar bill. People do not have to accept checks, credit, seashells, rocks, etc., but they must accept cash. The reasoning behind this is paper money doesn't have any real value and if people loose faith in it our entire monetary system would collaspe.

Rob Pincus
December 18, 1998, 02:04 PM
Seems like this was brought up a a few years ago. Fed Ex had (possibly still has) a policy in some of its drop off centers (not just the door-to-door guys) that they would not accept cash.

It was brought up that the bills printed by the U.S. "must" be accepted for payment of goods or services. I don't know if they were ever taken to court over it, but I would really like for the Supreme Court to address this issue... the sooner the better.

Kodiac
December 18, 1998, 02:46 PM
The idea of Large Sum of Money is different to who ever your talking to...
It used to be that to me a large sum of mony was over $1000.00. Now that figure has dropped to under $100.00. The VALUE of the individual dollar has changed for me. Especially this time a year. In Utah a large sum would be over 500 bucks on average...
In Park City that sum is probably over $5000.00. I havent heard of any Utah officer using the old piracy laws to confiscate cash... but in the Richmond, VA area they sure did... A 17 year old kid still in school with a couple grand in cash - mostly 10s and 20s driving a new lexus after 2AM on a school night and the address on the liscense is in section 8 housing? That would raise a serious question in my mind. But I feel unless he fit the description of a wanted subject or there was other PC for a crime having been commited... I feel it would be a violation of his civil rights to confiscate any thing... This would of course been subject to not finding any thing after searching per subject's consent.


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Kodiac
Kenetic Defense Institute
[email protected]

Doc
December 19, 1998, 12:34 PM
Rich, are you suggesting that you were profiled? We all know that that is illegal and/or improper. Do we profile? Yes. Can it be proven that we do? No. You were speeding, Joe Blow made an improper lane change, John Doe had a dim tail light. Were they profiled? Yes. Were they stopped because they fit the profile? Yes. Was the given reason for the stop, "fit the profile"? No.

AZONE
December 20, 1998, 12:37 PM
It's funny how most of the threads end up somehow "anti cop or government".

The most important responsibilty of any "highway patrol" is traffic safety:speeders, etc...it is also an important responsibilty for any police agency. All the cases of drug running, etc involve inconsistent stories from the driver and/or passengers. Asking general questions is common and a good indicator of what's going on whether drugs or slurred speech from drinking. However, many courts have ruled that other issues (except DUI) are supposed to be addresed AFTER the reason for the stop has been completed and after your license/ID has been returned to you. Everything after that point is voluntary. You do not have to give consent. Some have said "he searched my car for no reason" in actuality you gave him consent.

If you have nothing to hide than just tell him that you wish not to chat but you will sign the ticket or warning.

I also recommend that if you don't want your gun(s), whether concealed or stored, handled or questioned, don't advertise. Like stickers on the back window, etc..Some states require by law with a CCW permit that you inform the officer that you have a gun, and keep in mind he can secure that during the stop if he wants.

If an officer did not ask a few questions when his instincts or observations demanded he would be a disservice to the community. I'm sure that,however, after doing it over and over, he probably sounds monotone and impersonal. Also true, is that many officers are overzealous but not with the intention of "oh boy, I can't wait to go violate someone's rights!",it's the desire to take another drunk driver or drug runner,who was on the way to see your daughter, off the road.

Rob Pincus
December 20, 1998, 06:17 PM
I would add that I appreciate when someone tells me that they have a weapon on them or weapons in the car. I take it as a sign of respect and legitimacy. IMHO, it is better to tell an officer and risk a hassle (very small percentage) than NOT tell an officer and he finds out. This is a potentially "scary" thing for an offcier to discover.

When travelling I always inform another officer that I am armed or have weapons in the car. The one exception to that in the last few years has been when I was in NJ, which is like another planet.



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-Essayons

Rich Lucibella
December 20, 1998, 08:53 PM
Doc-
Yup, I was profiled after the stops.

Azone-
Nope. I don't think this thread has turned anti-cop or anti-America. I think it's stayed right on track as we try to balance the rights of LEO's to return home to their families at the end of the day and the rights of honest citizens to interact with LEO's without becoming an immediate suspect.

Unfortunately, we all break "policies" or laws from time to time...whether you choose to travel with enough cash to for an emergency emergency or you choose to be "tried by 12 rather than carried by 6" in the People's Republic of New Jersey. Or maybe you have a teenager who uses the car and may have left a "roach" in your ashtray.

Aren't these the issues the Congress is now wrangling with when it questions how far Law Enforcement should be allowed to go in "invading" a Citizen-President's privacy? Fact is, I don't stand to gain anything from a traffic stop...so, I'd like to see the rules of engagement limited as much as possible....after all, after the officers safety, aren't the Laws primarily designed to protect me?

In my case, as already stated, I offered both the officers the right to search the car. In retrospect, this was dumb as I was picking it up after 8 weeks from my lady in NC. I know her real well. But I don't know her friends very well. I have no idea what they may have dropped or hid in the car during a previous traffic stop.

Had the dogs been called, I would quite possibly have been out some considerable sum of money...since the dogs always "hit" on American currency...and I prefer not to depend on plastic when on the road.

These are difficult questions that have to be worked out before we see cameras on every street corner.
Regards,
Rich

Rob Pincus
December 20, 1998, 09:07 PM
Rich,

didn't you drive through Atlanta? Practically a camera on every corner there. And if I ever get pulled over there, I'll be sure to mention the time I had the misfortune of having to drive through "freak-nic" (The so called black daytona beach type spring break event). Only on TV reports have I seen a more blatant disregard for laws and civility.. and all that with state troopers and Atlanta PD at every exit of the interstate, just watching it all, by order of the mayor. I'm no prude, but it was medieval.

Anyway, our dog doesn't hit on cash (he barely hits at all). ;)

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-Essayons

Rich Lucibella
December 20, 1998, 10:41 PM
Rob-
Correct, the dogs don't hit on cash. But they *do* hit on cocaine. Go to your local bank; withdraw $2,000 of US Currency in large bills; Check to see if your dogs hit on the money.

When it's in government (FDIC) posession, we all know that US Currency is 99% "tainted". When you walk out of the bank, however, it's reasonable cause for confiscation and a protracted legal battle titled "US Govt v. $2,000.00 of US Govt Funds". They actually take the money to trial...you don't even have to show up. ;)
Rich
Rich

Rob Pincus
December 20, 1998, 10:53 PM
No, really. I've seen quite a few dogs fail that test. I wasn't just being sarcastic about our county dog.

I know what you mean though and it is pretty freakin' stupid.
Cash is today to the government what the barter economy of immagrant ghettos was to previous generations of state and city government. They see it as subversive to their monitoring of fiscal activity..ie- they might not be getting every penny they want in taxes.

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-Essayons

HS
December 21, 1998, 03:54 AM
Dont know if this is worth mentioning but here goes. About 1985 I was pulled over by the Police and informed that they had information that there was drugs in my car. There wasn't, but they did a half-hearted pi$$ant search.
In Brisbane Aus. you can NOT find out who makes such an allegation....so the Police can (make up) seach with NO probable cause if they don't like the way you or your car looks .
So after the "search" I immediately went to my closest friends house and pulled apart my car LOOKING for ANYTHING that may have been "planted" there.
Luckily there wasn't anything but I think you guys can think of what was going through my mind at the time ! ;)
So...how goes it in your neck o' the woods ?
If a LEO pulled YOU over, do you have the RIGHT to DEMAND PROOF of an allegation of being in possession of drugs etc. or are you in the same boat as I was?

B Shipley
December 25, 1998, 03:21 AM
This is my first post on TFL. I recognize some here from GlockTalk. I have had some bad experiences w/ cops in the past, mostly in the form of rudeness, and mostly from cops in Kansas City and surrounding areas. No, I am always respectful (and I wouldn't beg for my life, let alone traffic tickets), for I remember what officer friendly told us in school, which is that he could always find a reason to pull someone over and he could always find more violations.

I am a stong believer in individual liberties and don't wish to give them up for what Franklin called "temporary safety." So, I feel compelled to speak out on the profiling and confiscation issue. Many Arab/Muslim groups have spoken out against terrorist profiling as discriminatory, since it targets those from the Middle East, and I think some are suing right now to stop the practice, as well they should. To extrapolate this, Isn't it just as wrong to make a traffic stop for similar reasons. I know that the officer won't make the rationale for the stop that you fit a profile. I don't dispute that having prejudices is a good strategy in LE, since you often don't have that much time to think things through in a pressure situation and your gut can and will save your ass. But I think it goes too far.

I don't think the war on drugs is or ever will be won. Why? Its just too damn profitable. As long as it remains illegal and as long as there is demand for the product, then it will be scarce, and scarcity and demand affect price, which moves upward when demand is high and supply is low-- basic microecon. Legalization is the only way to go if you wish to curb smuggling, since the artificial restrictions placed on supply will be lifted and supply should then rise to meet demand (and price should go down since it was held artificially high; it doesn't take a lot of money to make drugs, especially in Columbia and other countries where they'd kill for a dollar). Is there a human cost to legalization? Yes and No. Yes, insofar as there will be addicts, but no if you wish to make a case for increases in the number of addicts. I say this because the price of drugs has been in a decline since the '70s (all according to govt. stats), so supply is starting to catch up with demand, despite increased crackdowns (and increases in the quantity seized) and these Gestapo tactics like asset forfeiture. The number of kids using has increased despite this glut, but I'd venture to say this is an anti-DARE, just say yes backlash and enhanced "coolness" from all the attention focused on stopping drug use (doing something that is wrong = cool). Hell, the prez toked (let's see if the number of BJs increases among teens, too).

To combine the drug and civil rights issues, I think that in our zeal to stop drugs, we are tightening the noose on everyone just to catch a few. The govt. wants to track your spending, so they monitor transactions in cash and impute pernicious motives to those carrying "large" amounts of cash. This ought not to be, but it is. LE agencies and govt. in general can deny you due process by actually treating your assets as defendant in forfeiture (civil) case, in which YOU must prove that you didn't get them by illicit means, never mind that there was no criminal charge made against you.

To forfend against these usurpations, I would recommend that you specifically keep records of your withdrawals, ATM transactions, etc. before making your trip. If you work from a cash business, I would still advise making a deposit, then withdrawing it to provide a paper trail. You can always "kite" the money from future receipts. These could, perhaps, get you your cash back w/o incident, and w/o the need for legal action, unless they're just crooks w/ a badge, intent on ripping you off, like seems to be the case in Louisiana (known for have officers slightly more honest than Mexico). This is a sad situation, when the crooks making off w/ your money are supposed to protect it.

For those of you in LE, I'm not that anti-LE, but some of the behavior I've witnessed or heard about, and these shady, shoddy tactics don't make me an over enthusiastic supporter. Whatever happened to higher standards for those who enforce the law? We all know that cops speed, then use the badge to get off the hook. I really think that the good cops out ther need to think about how they tolerate the a--holes, since everyone gets painted with the same brush when these guys do something that gets them on TV. I don't care for double standards for anything-- one high standard for everyone (welcome to the real world you say?). Well, I will say that I don't, fortunately, get to meet cops that often ;), and maybe its just the glorified meter maid traffic cops that have an attitude problem in this town. Still, we have a high enough crime rate that the city should take several dozen officers from traffic and place them on patrol, since twelve car laser speedtraps don't do anything for the homicide rate (at a time when the national avg is declining), but do help revenue. I guess that I'll say that I don't hold anything against "real" cops who need cuffs more than a ticketbook.

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-B. Shipley

Sorry, no Latin affectations

Ed Brunner
December 25, 1998, 07:14 AM
THE CRIME RATE IS NOT DROPPING!
They are fudging the statistics.
The war on drugs is more profitable to law enforcement than you might imagine.
I am very much pro-law enforcement and anti abuse of power.

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Better days to be,

Ed

Jason Kitta
December 25, 1998, 08:32 AM
Ed,

its funny you mention that. We have no idea what the crime rate is. The FBI ucr says one thing. Interviews with convicts raise the numbers more, then victim surveys raise it even more. In short we have no idea what the true crime rates are, and there is no way to truely know.

Jason

sorry, for anyone who dosen't know UCR is the FBI's Uniform Crime Report.

[This message has been edited by Jason Kitta (edited 12-25-98).]

Michael Carlin
December 25, 1998, 10:04 AM
B. Shipley,

one word : AMEN! (welcome to this venue)

Ed Brunner: Ditto!

LEOs: Just think of the time you could spend on real crime, if we decriminalized dope. The profit would go out of the deal, the addict would not have to steal 10 to 100 times the value of his inflated price habit to fence to support it! Burglary would plummet, robbery too! The prison could discharge about 40% of their populations.

I find much merit in the assertion that the anti-marijuana laws were oringinally designed to give law enforcement another handle on minorities. Like the original intent of the Jim Crow gun laws.

Perhaps, after we resolve the President's situation, we might realize that we have gotten way too far into people's personal lives! (That is not about sex, itis about crimes called perjury and obstruction of justice, no matter what the Democrats allege).

I would like to have job where I could go back to my boss every year and ask for an expansion of my force, my equipement inventory, and my powers to search, arrest, sieze, wire-tap, "sting", surveil because "we are losing the battle". And every year get some increase. Man, had we followed that course in Viet Nam, we would have 5.8 million US dead by now.

We are hemorrhaging our constitutional rights in a sort of blood letting over the protection of society from its own propensity to abuse drugs.

Why? Look at the work of Edgar Allen Poe, did his drug use prevent his writing first class literature? Look at the number of artists and actors whose drug use has been well publicized. Surely, I can not be the only one who questions the deletorious effects alleged to these drugs when I see these people turn saleable product while using drugs.

Would the health care industry drown in sea of broken people due to a legalization? I think that SOME would certainly fall victim to excess. But the savings in LE, and incarceration would most likely more than pay the costs. The savings in insurance losses from auto theft, burglary, robbery, and arson to cover these crimes would be immense.

We created organized crimes franchise to liqour with the Volstead Act. It was a noble and failed experiment. We fell for more liberal drivel in the drug laws, and the experiment has failed miserably. Why can we not break out of this failing course?

I think that one reason is that it is a distractor, a useful diversion, that allows those who are by nature controlling, joyless, unhappy people to legislate against anything that they do not like. They can, in the name of drug control violate numerous rights.

And we, the sheeple, view this "protection" to be a good!

I have about 30 months to retirement from the military, having more than 27 years service now. I am disheartened that the consititution I swore 7 times to protect has been subverted by our worst enemy, ourselves.







------------------
Ni ellegimit carborundum esse!

Yours In Marksmanship

michael

GLV
December 25, 1998, 09:47 PM
All, The CATO Institute did an excellent paper on the drug war several years ago. I imagine it is still available. I do not know how to win the drug war without a total loss of freedom, and total isolation of our country. The cost of this war approachs or exceeds 50 billion a year.
It is the reason for whole legions of swat teams, entry teams, special weapons training, undercover operations. etc,etc exist.
It is the reason we are seeing daily a militarization of our police, and more and more federal police. I see no end. George

Walt Welch
December 26, 1998, 10:33 PM
Legalize all drugs? Well, jeez, it does have some superficial attractions, some of which are mentioned above. It is a lot more complex than that, however. When Switzerland legalized all drug use a decade or so ago, and the kids were shooting up in 'needle park', it was thought to be a success. Then they discovered they had the highest AIDS rate in Europe. They have abandoned the all drugs are legal stance now.

Some drugs, like marijuana, why not? Public sentiment is swinging that way anyway. We've come a long way since 'Reefer Madness.'

Cocaine, well, I like the UK method; if you are a confirmed, irredemable addict, the pharmacist prepares cigarettes with cocaine injected into them, and dispenses them, with a physician's Rx. Sell cocaine over the counter, NOT!! Likewise morphine, heroin, barbiturates. I saw all too many people screwed up on these substances as an ER MD, and making them more easily available would exacerbate this condition. Not just among the addicts, but the people they run their vehicles into as well.

There is also a subconscious viewpoint that certain occupations have to be drug free. Do you want a stoned Air Traffic Controller? Or LEO? A priest? Your surgeon? If drugs are legal, the attempt to keep certain 'sensitive' occupations drug free would be more difficult.

About Rich's initial post; driving a sports car, leased to a FL corp? Three day growth of beard? Harley jacket? What were you doing, Rich, trolling for trouble?

I suspect that there may well be a change in the protocol for dealing with people fitting the profile you did. As I understand it, NC and FL LEA's are ordering a number of colonoscopes. That will give the words 'cavity search' a new meaning!! <g> WW

Patrick
December 27, 1998, 02:54 PM
I have been lurking on the Firing Line for a while now, and finally feel the need to speak out on all the "I'm not against LEO's BUT..." postings I have seen lately.

Okay, here goes, I AM A COP! I refuse to be ashamed to say that. Here is another news flash folks: I do not have to kiss your a$$ simply because I have a need to speak with you for some reason. I need to be civil and I need to be businesslike. I try to be polite and courteous whenever I can.

But there are some situations that no matter what I do I am going to make someone mad. And these people are then going to go out and tell all their friends what a loser I am. Do I have the ability to tell "the rest of the story" to defend my reputation? No. And so the story goes.

There are two sides to every story folks, and those with a grudge can and do bend the truth on a regular basis.

As far as violating peoples rights go, I will not stand for it. If one of my officers gets out of line, we deal with it. Immediately.

The network news shows regularly highlight mistakes made by cops who had only a second or two to act, and generally these are the "big city" departments. This tends to make people believe that cops everywhere are out of control. This is far from the truth.

There are a few bad apples out there, as there are in any profession, and LE in general has been working hard to weed them out. We also have improved our hiring standards to keep them from getting in. How many others have to go through testing, multiple interviews, psychological screening, background investigations, etc, just to get a job?

Thanks for the opportunity to rant. I feel better now.

Okay, now on to the question of drugs. I would like to make an example out of alcohol. Alcohol is a perfectly legal and safe drug when used in moderation, yet I have still pulled too many dead bodies out of mangled cars. I have been to too many homes where the families have been beaten and abused, by both drunk men and drunk women. And the examples go on.

Marijuana and cocaine? Do you want to be crossing an intersection the same time as a person under the influence of drugs? Do you want your children to be?

Remember that it is against the law to drive drunk yet how many people have done that because, "I don't have to go that far, I'll be fine?" Most people have, at one time or another, tempted fate that way. You can bet that this will also happen with drugs.

As far as reducing the crime rate, I don't buy it. Today's alcoholics can't hold jobs, so they go on welfare and steal to support their lifestyle. Now we would be dealing with things much more addictive, and you don't believe that the problem will be worse?

One more example. Millions of kids drink. It is against the law, they are not old enough or matue enough to handle it, yet they do it anyway. When parents can go out and get some cheap acid, their kids will get into it. It is inevitable. More death, more destruction, more people praying on society either through crime, or welfare, etc.

Don't buy into the liberal agenda here folks, think it through as logically and carefully as you would when making your argument in support of the RKBA.

Get out to the range and exercise your rights!

Patrick

[This message has been edited by Patrick (edited 12-27-98).]

Rob Pincus
December 27, 1998, 05:54 PM
I agree with the last part of Patrick's post. Wholeheartedly. I've been debateing entering into this fray for a few days. I even typed it out once and didn't post it. I really enjoying discussing guns and tactics. Political discussion get rather tedious for me. But, here goes:

Am I a hypocrite if I think that Drugs should be illegal? That the government (and our parents, friends, kids, employers, employees..etc) should tell us not to use them? I think people should be able to do pretty much whatever they want, if it doesn't hurt someone else or deprive them of their property. I think there should be fewer laws and less government. but I don't think that "drugs" should be legal. at all. No-lee-way-here-I've-made-up-my-mind.
okay? The detrimental effects to our sciety of putting some kind of approval on the introduction of what are now illegal drugs to the body would be the last straw that would break the back of our moral camel.

HS- We can't "make-up" allegations. We may not have to answer to the suspect in question, but we would have to answer to a lot of other people, from Sergeants to the District Attorney if we didn't have documented facts. If an LEO pulls someone over or goes to someone's residence or place of business he needs to call the dispatcher and tells them what is up. That transmission is recorded and the dispatcher amkes a note in the computer, their is a paper and/or electronic trail for everything an officer does.

Everyone-
To answer the question in the topic:
The procedure has certainly changed in one town (I missed where exactly).. CNN ran a story this afternoon on a town where the officers are pulling people over for driving properly and giving them coupons to local restaraunts. The cynical part of me thinks something is up with that. Can an LEO in that jurisdiction now pull someone over without waiting for the dim headlight or broken tail light, then hand them a coupon while looking for beer cans hastily stuffed bewtween the seats? hmmmmmm.....

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-Essayons

[This message has been edited by Rob (edited 12-27-98).]

olazul
December 27, 1998, 06:10 PM
The legalization of drugs was discussed around here not too long ago. I can't remember- It's all a haze.

First- I thought I could dress how I wanted to in this country. Piercings, long hair, jeans, tattoos you name it. You may not want me to go out with your daughter, but to let LE single me out because of it doesn't seem right. We stopped accusing rape victims of "wanting it" because of seductive dress long ago, but it is o.k. to accuse Rich of being singled out because of his sense of style?

Legalizalization of drugs? Why not. It is my body and if I want to stuff it with bacon grease, hamburgers, nicotine, caffeine, alcohol, cocaine, LSD, or heroin it should be my business as long as I don't hurt someone else while I'm doing it.

But what about the cost to society? Walt, perhaps you could illuminate what the cost of a sedentary lifestyle combined with poor diet has upon our society. Oh wait, sorry, that is socially acceptable.

I too have spent much time in ED's and treated OD's, skin popper abcesses, and trauma secondary to alcohol and drug(funny how etoh is not a "drug") abuse. It is a real problem.

I guess the question is how to deal with the problem. Since drug addiction is a
disease with a genetic dispostion I think the best way to diminish the impact is through treatment and education. To just outlaw an activity is notoriously ineffective and I don't like what this "war" is costing in terms of personal freedoms. Right now treatment is very difficult to get unless you have a good insurance plan, the one thing an addict does not usually have. This would be a good spot to talk about the RAND corp study but methinks I'm raving too much.

Take home point- you are responsible for your actions. Unless those actions are depriving someone else of their rights, then live and let die.

Patrick- LEO's are human beings with a tough job. I think that they are held with much respect on this forum. That of course does not mean that the individual or policy they are following should not be critiqued.

by the way- I didn't recieve an Xmas card from Clinton.

Olazul

Rob Pincus
December 27, 1998, 06:25 PM
The thing with the "drugs don't hurt anybody but the user line" is that it just isn't true. A few points were well made above.. think about it.. should someone who is hallucinating be allowed to raise children? should someone who's heart is on the brink of exploding be allowed to perate a passenger vehicle, or any vehicle on public roads? legalizingthe sale and use drugs would require as much, if not more, LE activity. Just as the legal use of Alcohol requires a great deal of LE Activity becuase of actions under the influence. Imagine what it woul db e like if crack were that readily available...

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-Essayons

olazul
December 27, 1998, 07:06 PM
I think a significant portion of our parents hallucinated during the 60's and they raised some fine individuals.
Drugs hurt alot of innocents. The addicted parent devastates the children and spouse, The addicted child devastates the parents and siblings, but the act of drug use doesn't violate the innocents rights.

Legalization of drugs is different than legalizing driving under the influence. Of course that should be illegal. As should be discharging a firearm in a city without due cause. It's dangerous to others.

If you frequently abuse alcohol or drugs you are a loser and need help. Legalization of drugs is not paramount to condoning it. It simply says that the addicted individual is not breaking a crime by using the drug. Moral implications are left to the individual.

RAND corp's famous study supported legalization of drugs and paying for treatment as the most cost effective means of decreasing the flow of drugs into the U.S.. Therefore the best way to decrease the number of addicts AND the fallout from drug and alcohol abuse is to legalize it and give treatment.IMHO.
I have known quite a few people who have dabbled with drugs in their youth and are wonderfull and productive members of society. Real role models- no kidding. They are also lucky they didn't get popped for possesion.

Are we having fun yet?
Olazul

Morgan
December 27, 1998, 10:17 PM
Good argument so far guys. As I noted in the earlier thread olazul mentioned, I'm totally pro-personal freedom. If you say I can't handle drugs, then how can you justify saying I can handle a gun? Remember that the Second Amendment is guaranteeing an already existing right, not creating that right.

It all boils down to how much freedom you'll let your neighbor have, and how much you'll give up for security. I think it was Franklin (correct me if I'm wrong, guys) who said that one who will give up freedom for security deserves neither.

Spectre
December 28, 1998, 12:01 PM
I drove very carefully through Hardeeville this week! :)...

Patrick and Rob, I have somewhat to say to you: first, in regard to LEO: I would, without hesitation, put myself in harm's way to save the life of an officer. If I saw an officer on the side of the road under attack or taking fire, I would interpose my vehicle, or my body, if need be, in his defense. (Yeah, I know about the legal issues-but if this man's life is on the line, CYA be damned!) This should, hopefully, establish without doubt that I am not anti-LEO. What I am against, is the erosion or outright theft of our freedoms.

Drugs...my, oh, my. I believe the previous thread was titled something like "One rare steak...", and can probably be found by doing a search of the last 30 days.

Let's be very clear. I know of no object-drug, weapon, means of transportation, etc- that is going to kill anyone all by itself. The person who misuses anything is the killer, not the object or substance. This seems fairly obvious to me, and if this reasonable logic can be applied to the objects we seek to protect (firearms and means of defense), why not the less politically-correct ones like illicit drugs? Individual responsibility. Let's say it together. This is the chief reason for America's greatness. The lack of it is killing us now. We seek to demonize objects instead of actions. WAKE UP! Peanut butter can kill you. Crackers can kill you. Red meat can kill you. Tobacco can kill you. Lack of exercise can kill you. Doughnuts can kill you...We are to assume that deaths from poor diet and maintenance of our bodies is somehow less tragic than deaths from currently illegal substances? BS. All of us exert an effect upon those around us. I have known- indeed, had the misfortune to be close to someone who killed themself through lack of exercise and incredibly foolish dietary choices. I am certain there are drug addicts who would have affected my life considerably more favorably.

The issue is control. Do you control your actions, or does the government? You should. If you cannot live without endangering your fellow man, sanctions will be enacted. The "War on Drugs" is nothing but a profit-maker and blatant excuse for widespread proliferation of police powers. Do I favor the usage of most drugs? Hell, no. I don't smoke. I rarely drink. I consume NO illegal drugs. I do know people who do while maintaining healthy and productive lives. There is no qualitative difference between one recreational drug and another. To be "fair", if the current illegal drugs remain criminalized, we should also outlaw tobacco, alcohol, caffeine, sugar, AND ALL FOODS. Duh.

DC
December 28, 1998, 12:32 PM
One thing is very clear, regardless of one's position on the drug issue:
The drug biz is thriving and the Constitution is being raped under the guise of "the greater good". Innocent people are being hurt by the very people who are in existence to allegedly protect them.

Profiling
Asset forfeiture and seizure

I am dead serious, this is wrong and evil. When governmental/agency profit gets involved in enforcing law, then the twilight of freedom has begun in this country. You can make your rationale, but it is mere rhetoric to justify tyranny.

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"Quis custodiet ipsos custodes"

Patrick
December 28, 1998, 01:25 PM
Spectre - you are correct, the issue is control. When one eats steaks or cheesburgers one remains in control of their actions.

When one is on drugs such as cocaine (crack or otherwise), LSD, heroin, pcp, etc, one is NOT in control of their actions. These substances are dangerous to the user, just like junk food, but they are also dangerous to anyone else that the user interacts with.

BTW - If the government ever bans cheesburgers, greasy fries, or live Blues music is seedy little bars, I'm outta here. :)


DC (and others)- the asset seizure and laws were designed primarily to deny criminals the profit from their criminal activities. True, these laws are often used to seize drug profits, but they are also used in other cases such as organized crime, etc. The media likes to highlight their use in drug cases because drugs are such a "hot buton" topic right now.

Contrary to what some people have claimed, the prosecutor has to establish, in a court or law, that the seized items were either directly used to conduct illegal activities, or were the profits of criminal activity.

Vehicles may be taken if they were used to facilitate the criminal act, such as transporting drugs for sale. Money may be taken if it may be shown to be the proceeds from the sale of drugs.

These are just a couple of common examples. If the prosecutor fails to establish these facts in court, then the property is returned to the owner. Just like if a prosecutor fails to establish the facts in a criminal case, the defendant goes free.

A person may introduce evidence to refute the prosecutor's claims, or remain silent and let the prosecutor screw it up all on his own. Due process is followed in these cases.

Patrick

[This message has been edited by Patrick (edited 12-28-98).]

[This message has been edited by Patrick (edited 12-28-98).]

Morgan
December 28, 1998, 02:01 PM
Patrick - in the best of worlds, you are correct. Been to the People's Republik of Denver lately? If my renter is busted twice for disturbing the peace on MY property, it can be confiscated. A couple of loud parties and you take the home from the landlord? Yes. No due process.

Also, just like alcohol, one can control their actions while under the influence of LSD, PCP, heroin, cocaine, etc. Just like alcohol, if you cannot control yourself when drinking (using drugs) you can control yourself beforehand, when you choose to use, and how much. If I ate a sheet of acid, then I'm obviously a moron. But a single line of coke at a party doesn't turn me into a menace to society. I know the difference, and I'm the one who's responsible for my actions if I eat the sheet of acid and then go (insert horrible crime here), just like one who drinks to excess, then drives.

If we, as a society, quit treating people like children and make people take responsibilty for themselves, their actions, and yes, even their children, maybe our society will grow up. As a productive, responsible member of society who's tired of paying for other's indescretions with my tax dollars and my freedoms, I must say that the current way of dealing with drugs (and personal responsibility in general) isn't working. If this is a "War on drugs." we're losing. Those of you who think such things should still be outlawed need to come up with something better - if you can do it without such high cost (in money and freedom) I'm all ears. If not, give it up.

DC
December 28, 1998, 02:35 PM
Patrick...
Yes, I agree that the original intent was to merely expand RICO...however, as we all know (or should know) new law uses exisiting law as precedent.
In Oakland Calif, police now seize and sell vehicles used by men cruising for prostitutes. And, worse, a conviction is not necessary. The rationale is to "clean up" targeted areas of the town that have been used by prostitutes.
As well, once a bureacracy gets ahold of someone's assets, it can take months if ever for the person to get them back, and generally, no recompense for loss, inconvenience and expense is given.
Example: almost 4 yrs ago a local middle-class family was subjected to a "dynamic entry" early in the morning. Wrong house and the real drug dealers were out on the street with the rest of the neighborhood watching this. In short, the children were taken by child protection, both the parents lost their jobs and house before it was all straightened out. They sued the county and won, but the county appealed and it is still under appeal. The real drug dealers packed their tents and quietly slipped out within a few days.
The only good to come out of this, is that the county Narcotics Task Force has been reinned in for awhile, as this was one of many abuses. Alas, the county still won't pay. And no, I have no intimate relations to any of these incidents.



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[i]"Quis custodiet ipsos custodes"

Dakota Law Dog
December 28, 1998, 02:44 PM
I was going to stay out of this thread because all it seemed to be accomplishing was providing a space for the pro druggers to vent. Then Patrick came on and I decided to give my 2 cents worth. Patrick is right! I agree with you 100% I am a cop too. I know exactly that there are two sides to the story, but we don't get to tell ours. That's because we are professional. BGs go to tthe bar and tell evrybody who will listen what a jerk the cop was that just stopped him. How long would we keep our jobs if we went down to the local cafe and spouted off about every detail of Joe BGs DUI arrest the night before!

I thought this was a gun forum. Stop comparing the "right to use drug" to the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. The right to defend yourself is a God given one. Use of drugs is not a right. The reasons of ":personal choice" sound like the crap the Posse Comitatus up here in ND use to avoid taxes and drive without licenses, and generally disavow that they have to obey any federal laws at all.

Patrick, you da man!

longhair
December 28, 1998, 03:20 PM
as i said in the other thread that discussed this topic, the war on drugs is not, and will not ever be won. there will always be a demand for some kind of substance to get you high or whatever. the "war on alcohol" otherwise known as prohibition, didn't work, it caused more trouble than anything else. the spreading of organized crime and everything that goes with it. the same thing is happening now, except now our rights are being tramped on. if stopping and searching you, just because you have "the look" isn't unconstitutional what the hell is? i don't care if a person does drugs, gets drunk, or runs around his backyard buck naked, as long as it's not creating a hazard to anyone but themselves. if it esclates into something hazardous to the general public, then arrest them. this search and seizure stuff is BS. i'm not anti-leo, my brother-in-law {the one i claim} is a cop. it ain't the cops, it the laws. Dakota Law Dog, this isn't pro-drug, it's pro-freedom, it's pro-constitution, it's pro- lets get our government under control. ok, i'm through!

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fiat justitia

Morgan
December 28, 1998, 04:15 PM
Dakota Law - Who gives you the right to decide what I may ingest? Where do we draw the line? My point is that if the majority says I can't smoke marijuana, and you say "that's okay" and enforce the law they pass, but say that the right to protect ourselves is "God-given" you're being a bit hypocritical. What happens when the majority decides that you can defend yourself, but you can't have a gun? Do you only obey/enforce the laws you agree with, or do you believe in personal freedom? Or is it all okay as long as you're the one in charge, so you can keep your gun?

If we were to really punish people for their misdeeds, without clemency for state of mind, I don't think there would be a problem with druggies running wild. Without thousands of non-violent drug users in jail, the space would be freed up to lock away, for a looooong time, those who truly are dangerous. If some guy high on pot crashed his car into someone else's and killed them, and we treated him like any other first degree murderer (he knew what he was doing = forethoght), and got away from this wussie 20 years on death row crap, we'd put a real damper on driving under the influence. Much more than our current laws.

I return to my original point - what we're doing now isn't working. Can you think of a way to make it work, without infringing on my freedoms and taking lots of my money to do it? If not, maybe we should try it my way...

My way - no victim, no crime. If there's a crime, punish fairly (though most these days may call my fair severe), and swiftly. No excuses. If you've been using drugs and commit a crime, the punishment should be especially severe, not lessened because of state of mind. When I say no victim, I mean an individual or named (individually) group, not society or "the State." Perfect? No, there can be no perfection in a diverse society, but I think it much better than what we have now.

[This message has been edited by Morgan (edited 12-28-98).]

Dakota Law Dog
December 28, 1998, 08:35 PM
you think you have a right to ingest what ever you want? When somebody is on a ledge, then we shouldn't try to talk him in. Someone has a gun in their mouth, then he should have the right to ingest the bullet. Or if someone is holding a knife to their thre year old daughter's throat and saying to the cops, "Just shoot me", we should do it because that's his choice and we all go home a sleep soundly.

yea legalize drugs, that's a good plan. Make it legal for kids to drink too, because if it's legal, they won't want to do it any more.

Now if you wanted to legalize prostitution, I'm with you

Morgan
December 28, 1998, 10:09 PM
Dakota -

Damn straight I have the right to ingest a bullet.

Of course you should try to talk a desperate person off the ledge. They'd have jumped if they weren't just crying out for help (unless, of course, they're waiting for the cameras - in which case you should push them).

Yes, you should shoot the pitiful waste of organic matter that holds a knife to his three year old daughter's throat and says to the cops "Just shoot me..." The world's better off without such cowardice.

I think you and I agree on the crystallization of justice, but disagree on where the line should be drawn. I respect your opinion even if I disagree with it. Unfortunately for me, if the erosion of individual rights in the name of "safety" continues, your God given right to self-protection will be intact in five years, but I, as a non-LEO, will be relying upon you and your bretheren to protect me and mine.

I reiterate - either you're pro individual freedom or against. The middle ground is that of hypocrites and politics.

Ed Brunner
December 28, 1998, 10:09 PM
Certain things and activities pose a danger to society. Cars and guns are dangerous. Drinking and drugs are dangerous. Should they be banned?
What should be banned?
Or should USE be banned?
This debate will never end.

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Better days to be,

Ed

DC
December 28, 1998, 10:26 PM
Dakota..
Talking someone off a ledge is different from
making laws that prevent buildings high enough to have a ledge.
Talking someone out of swallowing a bullet is different from making laws that deny access to a gun in order to prevent "bullet eating"; and searching people on the profile they may have a gun and thereby potentially eat a bullet.
You shoot the guy with the knife to his daughter's throat because he'd kill her otherwise, not because you are honoring his request....he had a stronger "negotiating" position than you.
As for LEOs not "spouting off"...ever been to a cop bar?

The reason the anti-gunners are successful is that have no qualms about restricting any right they choose. They use the same form of rhetoric and rationale that you do about drugs...further restrictions and authority for the greater good. "You have cash and a flashy car, prove its not drug profits". "You have a gun(s) prove you won't hurt anyone with them".
You are against drugs but favor prostitution...prostitution has been proven over and over again to be a public health hazard. The danger is not between just you and the prostitute.

Before you dismiss me as a "pro-druggie", note that I have not stated that drugs should be legalized. I do take exception to the increased trampling and restrictions of Constitutional rights in a "war" that can never be won on the current playing field. Personally, I have no problem at all with drugs, prostitution and gambling being illegal...and they have been for years. So deal with it when you can, within the reasonable constraints. I've noticed that murder and theft have never been eradicated by the law. We live in an allegedly free society....
that means that there is inherent in that a certain lack of orderliness and lawfullness. We put up with it and deal with it the best way we can because the alternative is supposed to be unacceptable.


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"Quis custodiet ipsos custodes"

Dakota Law Dog
December 28, 1998, 10:35 PM
Morgan, thank you for your post. I respect your opinion as well, vehemently disagreeing as I do. I didn't mean to step on anyones feelings. I have just seen so many bad things with drugs, well enough said.

We probably agree totally on how criminals are treated by the courts. Slap on the wrist, lift weights in prison, come out a super human criminal. I am in favor of capital punishment, and even if it isn't a deterrent, there are no repeat offenders.

I think I was wrong about one part above- criminals aren't humans. Humans respect the rights of others, criminals don't even respect themselves.

Also, I know and have worked with cops that think the world is their playground to arrest any and all for what ever they can make up. They disgust me as much as they do you. Too bad with a ll the tests, evaluations , and hoops to jump thru, they can't come up with a test to measure common sense. Fortunately, those guys are few and far between up here in fridgid ND. Yup, another blizzard raging as we speak. Common sense is, however, disappearring up here as well.

And a better year to us all!

Dakota Law Dog
December 28, 1998, 11:20 PM
DC

I said what I did about prositution with more than a little facetiousness. You tell me that prostituion has proven over and over to be a public health hazard, but won't listen to the "proof" from what ever source that drugs are a proven problem either.

What do you mean about cops spouting off at "cops bars". I don't see what you are referring to.

DC
December 29, 1998, 12:09 AM
Dakota...
I didn't say legalize drugs did I? I didn't defend drug usage, did I? Therefore you have no idea whether I listen to or don't listen to "proof" that drugs are harmful. I stated my position on drugs. Where you and I apparently differ is on how much authority and lack of substantive evidence you may use.

The "spouting off" reference was to yours about how LEO don't talk in public about their activities. There are bars that LEO tend to congregate, and they bitch and moan as much as anyone else.



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"Quis custodiet ipsos custodes"

GLV
December 29, 1998, 12:33 AM
LEOs and rest, I do not think that anyone out there believes that the war on drugs is being won, or that it is a war.
At a cost of 50 billion a year, there must be a better way.
In general, our federal law enforcement agencies are out of control. They don't seem to have anyone in charge, and badly need congressional oversight. The attorney general of the US is a joke. GLV

Dakota Law Dog
December 29, 1998, 01:48 AM
I apologize for the mistake of listing you as pro legalization. My mistake. But I have never stated I agree with the confiscation issues raised on this thread. I have stated that I don't agree with cops that do nothing but try to put notches on their belt no matter what it takes and who they screw over. Agreed, our experiences are different because of geographic location.. Where do you llive?

As for spouting off to other cops, who else would listen to us vent?

Not trying to offend, and if I did I apologize.

Being from ND we do have a great deal less interference from the Fed. Much more rural setting, Just this crappy winter stuff to put up with. I think we agree that the government in general wants to be in every thing in our lives. But people keep electing the politicians that do this to them.

I agree the war on drugs is not going to be won the way the government is fighting it. But Legalization won't solve it either. And I agree that kicking violent offenders out of prison to put in minimum mandatory drug offenders is crap.

This truly is a topic that can heat up. I'm glad we can discuss this on line, as it makes for more polite conversation. but it is one of those issues that people generally don't change their mind about.

Now, do you prefer Glocks or USPs?

DC
December 29, 1998, 02:28 AM
Yeah it is a touchy issue :)
I live in Calif, a rural county that has been "discovered". Grapes are driving out the cattle and farmers, and bringing in liberal yuppies....with their fears and their socialism and their city crime. I'm way too young to feel so nostalgic about the "good ol days" ;) I apologize for getting hot

I prefer USP

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"Quis custodiet ipsos custodes"

Rich Lucibella
December 29, 1998, 08:40 AM
Class act, all!

This thread might easily have turned real ugly. Instead it's proved that passionate discourse and disagreement can occur without resorting to personal attacks.

I thank each of you for your contributions and behavior. I think I've learned a great deal.

I'm only locking this thread due to its length...the loading time is real long. I encourage any of the participants to continue it in a new thread.
Rich Lucibella
ps: Remember, minds are like parachutes...they can only help us in the "open" condition.