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February 2007
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Never Get Busted… ?

Remember the discussions about Barry Cooper, the ex-cop who was marketing the Never Get Busted video? There was some divided opinion within the drug policy reform community, whether this guy was legit or an opportunist, or some combination thereof.
While I haven’t had a chance to see it yet, others now have viewed the video, and it appears that the “combination thereof” description may fit.
Mark Draughn has a review of the video here, and there’s some detailed analysis at Flex Your Rights
While there appears to be a fair amount of useful information, there’s one very glaring problem: Barry Cooper recommends consenting to a search if you’re holding.

Even though you have the constitutional right to refuse consent — when you refuse it raises a huge red flag. You could almost call it a huge reasonable suspicion.

That is just plain wrong. Constitutionally. Morally. Ethically. And just about every other way. What Barry Cooper is saying is that the Constitution is meaningless and the police will, in every instance, violate your Constitutional rights. I don’t believe that we’re that far gone yet. But even if he was right — if standing on your right to refuse consent would cause the police to search and that they’d manipulate the truth to get away with it, I still think it is right to stand up for your rights.
And what we need to do is continue to make sure that everyone knows that they have the right to not consent to a search, and that people who are not holding should also not consent to a search (in fact, I actually wish a cop would ask to search my car, just so I could refuse).
You may find the video interesting, or useful, but I’d advise against following Barry Cooper’s advice in this one area.
Update: Via Tanya (breaking my heart), I learn that Loretta Nall has reviewed it in detail and wants her money back.

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