2016: Senate Proposal Would Expand Mandatory-Minimum Drug Sentencing — Again

Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference in National Harbor, Maryland, on March 15, 2013. (Photo: Gage Skidmore) Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-New Hampshire), facing a primary runoff in a state struggling with opioid misuse, is pushing to vastly expand mandatory-minimum sentencing for the opioid drug fentanyl. Advocates say the proposal would repeat one of the worst mistakes of the war on drugs. In a move that would reinvigorate one of the most harmful innovations of the drug war, Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-New Hampshire) is pushing to vastly expand mandatory-minimum sentencing for those convicted of possessing the opiate drug fentanyl. Her proposal is facing fierce opposition from public health and civil rights advocates eager to end the war on drugs. Nearly 100 organizations sent a letter to Senate leadership this week opposing the legislation, which they say would extend harsh punishments to low-level […] Read More

2015: Bernie Sanders Declares It’s ‘Not Acceptable’ To Jail Marijuana Users And Let Big Bank CEOs Walk

Bernie Sanders has been making a lot of waves lately speaking out against police brutality and corruption, but recently the Democratic presidential hopeful came out against the Department of Justice’s weak pledge to supposedly “get serious” about white-collar crime. A lot of this sort of white collar criminal activity on Wall Street is what fueled the 2008 financial crisis. But while the Department of Justice said Thursday that it pledges to crack down on corrupt bankers and investors, Sanders isn’t impressed. The DOJ memo claims the government will from this point forward try to hold both corporations and individual employees accountable for illegal Wall Street activity. Sanders says this is long over due, but he says the DOJ doesn’t go far enough, and that the government is being hypocritical by destroying lives in the so-called “War on Drugs” while letting so much white collar crime go unpunished, or with just a slap on […] Read More

2014: Americans Are Sick of the War On Terror, War On Drugs … And All of the Other Failed U.S. Wars

Americans Turn Anti-War The American people are now overwhelmingly opposed to more war in Ukraine, Syria, Iran and elsewhere. A new Wall Street Journal/NBC poll shows: Americans in large numbers want the U.S. to reduce its role in world affairs even as a showdown with Russia over Ukraine preoccupies Washington …. In a marked change from past decades, nearly half of those surveyed want the U.S. to be less active on the global stage, with fewer than one-fifth calling for more active engagement—an anti-interventionist current that sweeps across party lines. A Pew poll from December found a majority of Americans – more than ever before in Pew’s 50-year history of polling this question – think the U.S. “should mind its own business internationally and let other countries get along as best they can on their own.” A Pew/USA Today poll conducted over the weekend found that Americans oppose – […] Read More

The raw (and ugly) truth about the war on drugs

Drugs are bad. Drugs destroy peoples’ lives. Didn’t you know that marijuana turns regular everyday people into zombie pot smokers? That’s why we have a war on drugs in America: to protect our children from potheads. Drugs are bad. Especially marijuana. I learned this the other day when I visited an elementary school as a guest speaker. The schoolchildren were well trained in describing the dangers of drugs. On command, they would spout out any number of statements describing them. But then a funny thing happened. I started asking how many of them were on drugs. You know, drugs their doctor prescribed. Drugs that alter brain chemistry to keep them docile, or free of pain, or to dilate their lungs so they could breathe easier. It turned out that 60% of these schoolchildren were either on drugs at that very moment, or had been on such drugs within the […] Read More