James Poulous then mocks Sullivan for elevating pot prohibition to “deadly serious” status.
I like Poulous. But his derision is misplaced. There have been 7,000 homicides in Mexico over the last two years, the vast majority directly related to black market drug trade. Seventy percent of Mexico’s black market drug rade is marijuana.
If Poulous wants to stick closer to home, one of his commenters notes that had Cheye Calvo exercised his Second Amendment rights when Prince George’s County police wrongly raided his home last summer on the mistaken assumption he was dealing marijuana, he’d almost certainly be dead. Instead, he was merely terrorized, and his dogs were slaughtered. A couple of weeks ago, unarmed Grand Valley State student Derek Kopp was shot in the chest during a marijuana raid. He’s lucky to be alive.
But we don’t need to single out “almost” cases. Det. Jarrod Shivers is dead and Ryan Frederick’s life is ruined over the prohibition of pot. Officer Ron Jones is dead, and Cory Maye, once sentenced to be executed, now faces a life sentence because of marijuana prohibition. Cheryl Lynn Noel is dead because of pot prohibition. So are Jose Colon, Tony Martinez, 13-year-old Alberto Sepulveda, Willie Heard, Christie Green, Pedro Navarro, Barry Hodge, Salvador Hernandez, Donald Scott, Kenneth Baulch, Dep. John Bananola, Officer Tony Patterson, Vincent Hodgkiss, Anthony Diotaiuto, Clayton Helriggle, Jeffery Robinson, Troy Davis, Alexander “Rusty” Windle, John Hirko, Scott Bryant, Robert Lee Peters, Manuel Ramirez, and Bruce Lavoie. Deputies James Moulson and Phillip Anderson and suspect George Timothy Williams were all killed in a single marijuana raid in Idaho in 2001. Officer Arthur Parga and Manuel Ramirez (a different one) killed one another in another marijuana raid after a family friend suspected of dealing marijuana had incorrectly given police Ramirez’s address as his own.
These are just some of the deaths associated with marijuana raids (all summarized, with sources, here). Then there is the domestic black market violence that comes with marijuana prohibition. And the unnecessary deaths of sick people (like Peter McWilliams) who might have lived if they’d had access to medical marijuana.
So yeah. I think “deadly serious” is about right, actually.