The ever-popular ‘there might be drugs’ excuse

Force Against Protesters Was Necessary Because Of… Drug Traffickers, Feds Assert

The supposed presence of “drug trafficking organizations” at protests in the wake of George Floyd’s death justified the use of “escalated force” at the demonstrations, U.S. Customs and Border Protection claimed in a memo revealed Wednesday.

There’s not any evidence to back up that claim in the memo, a copy of which was obtained by Yahoo News.

Nonetheless, at the top of an incident report dated Tuesday, the Homeland Security agency said that “due to nefarious actors and drug trafficking organizations using these protests as façades, there have been incidents where law enforcement (LE) officials have needed to respond with nonlethal and escalated force — incidents including the use of pepper spray, riot shields, and rubber bullets.”

The claim came two days after the Justice Department signed off on a Drug Enforcement Administration plan to act as federal law enforcement at the protests outside of the agency’s usual narcotics activities.

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20 Responses to The ever-popular ‘there might be drugs’ excuse

  1. Son of Sam Walton says:

    HSBC bank drug money America’s war on the other Dark Meat in Iraq for oil dark skin death keep drugs illegal to drive down the price of oil so Iraq can pay for their own security against drug money funded violence and terrorism thanks to the 2007 denationalization of Iraq’s oil because of long American presence fighting drug money in a long war

  2. NorCalNative says:

    The Christian Imperialists who run this country, like billy barr, are scared shitless of secular, progressive citizens.

    Time to legalize ALL drugs AND remove drug enforcement from their duties.

    • Servetus says:

      billy barr’s fear of secularism manifests itself in corruption as well as revelations of his ignorance of secular topics like chemistry. A few more details reveal his current role:

      Barr is Cheney 2.0. He is CIA from way back. His father was OSS. His father hired Jeffrey Epstein to be a math teacher at the Dalton School. Barr was Attorney General when Bush I gave Christmas eve pardons to Elliott Abrams and others after Bush I was voted out of office in 1992.

      Barr was brought into the Trump administration about the same time as Elliott Abrams. He basically declared that based on his reading of the Mueller report that there was no obstruction of justice. So Barr basically got to decide if Trump stays or goes.

      Barr will provide legal and political cover for Trump who simply deals in symbolism and narrow self-interest. If Barr wants to that is. He is incredibly slick and will triangulate. It will be in his interest to appear to uphold the law. This shows the limits of the current protests. […]

      And then there’s this:

      In an interview on CBS that aired Sunday, Attorney General William Barr defended the police assault on peaceful protesters in the nation’s capital on June 1—an attack he personally ordered—by falsely claiming that the chemical irritants deployed by law enforcement against demonstrators were not, in fact, chemical irritants.

      “There was no tear gas used,” Barr said on Face the Nation, echoing a claim that the U.S. Park Police has since walked back. “The tear gas was used Sunday when they had to clear H Street to allow the fire department to come in to save St. John’s Church. That’s when tear gas was used.”

      When CBS host Margaret Brennan pointed out that police used chemical irritants to disperse crowds of demonstrators, Barr—in an apparent effort to downplay the severity of the police assault—responded: “No, there were not chemical irritants. Pepper spray is not a chemical irritant. It’s not chemical.”

      Here’s what Wiki has to say about pepper spray:

      Pepper spray (also known as capsaicin spray or capsicum spray) is a lachrymatory agent (a chemical compound that irritates the eyes to cause a burning sensation, pain, and temporary blindness) used in policing, riot control, crowd control, and self-defense, including defense against dogs and bears.[1][2] Its inflammatory effects cause the eyes to close, taking away vision. This temporary blindness allows officers to more easily restrain subjects and permits people in danger to use pepper spray in self-defense for an opportunity to escape. It also causes temporary discomfort and burning of the lungs which causes shortness of breath.

      Pepper spray was engineered into a weapons grade chemical agent by Kamran Loghman when he worked for the FBI in the 1980s. Loghman also wrote the guide for police departments on how it should be used. After police sprayed docile protestors at University of California in 2011, Loghman came to regret his work and said, “I have never seen such an inappropriate and improper use of chemical agents”.[3][4]

      Although considered a less-than-lethal agent, it has been deadly in rare cases; and being pepper sprayed may have been a contributing factor in a number of other deaths. […]

  3. Servetus says:

    Between the time Michigan voters approved medicinal cannabis and more than 10 years later when they approved recreational cannabis is the subject of a study that appears intended to form a basis for future propaganda against marijuana consumers. Observations the authors highlighted:

    •One in nine Michiganders report using cannabis at least once in the last month, a percentage that increased 60% over a 14-year period.

    •About 3% of all state residents hold a medical cannabis card, nearly all of them for chronic pain.

    •Medical cannabis led to net revenue for the state of $5 million to $7 million a year.

    •One in 30 pregnant Michigan women reported using cannabis; the percentages were higher among those with the lowest incomes and education levels, potentially reflecting disparities.

    •The percentage of fatal motor vehicle crashes in Michigan that involve cannabis is increasing, even as the total rate of fatal crashes decreases. Among drivers tested for cannabis after such crashes, the percent that were positive more than tripled between 2004 and 2017, when 23.4% of tested drivers in fatal crashes had cannabis in their bloodstream at the time of the crash.

    •1.5% of Michiganders experience symptoms of cannabis use disorder.

    •Emergency department visits and hospitalizations related to cannabis poisoning increased recently, with older teens and young adults accounting for a disproportionate share of cases.

    •Cannabis-related misdemeanors and felonies accounted for nearly 4% of convictions in the state’s criminal justice system, about half of which occurred at the same time as other felony convictions.

    Michigan Health Lab: Cannabis in Michigan: New Report Documents Trends Before Recreational Legalization — U-M Injury Prevention Center compilation of data from state and federal sources will serve as baseline for future studies.

    The complete report is available as a pdf here.

  4. Son of Sam Walton says:

    The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander. Do not mistake changes in the system for an overall correction in what is inherently wrong with the system. Since the system is sick, manufactured out of racism and turned into ‘criminal’ to ‘protect us’, it must be recreated so Americans are in a system void of ultimate corrupting power and stereotypes of the other and then seeing criminal inside those stereotypes. Criminal, offender, convict, suspect, etc are terms that force blacks to fall through the filters of otherwise caring white Americans–blinded by tough on crime BS and lies. This 2nd Class Citizenship status is created through the process of being ‘arrested/cited’ and acts as bad gravity on the black community because of the family disruption and economic problems created by the law for the ‘offender’. When White owned jobs move across the ocean, then blacks are left with fewer, adding to the poverty, which drives up the crime created by the drug war and the policing of black communities to the point that offenders are simply manufactured like they were CDOs and other Junk Bonds in an Investment Bank. Made up laws that Americans have no choice but to accept, never voting for them and it creates criminals.

    Rap music has long been the Canary in the Coal Mine: since its birth.

  5. strayan says:

    A message from Nora Volkow on racial discrimination:

    Just remember to forget the role of NIDA in perpetuating the drug war before you read it.

    • blabla299 says:

      Oh Nutty Nora…. is she still around? Anyone got an ice -pick?

      • kaptinemo says:

        ONDCP and its minions and allies are facing some very real challenges to their satraps.

        The fact of the matter is that if the kind of desire for reform of police operations is focused on the (absolutely crucial) area of drug prohibition, drug prohibition will end overnight. The pols will fall over each other to show how ‘progressive’ they are (and claim credit for slaying this monster) to keep their jobs.

        Long time Couchmates don’t have to be told about the DrugWar origin of police militarization, and the seemingly endless cycle of police alienation from the community leading to more brutality, more alienation, wash, rinse, repeat. Here’s a chance to finally break free of a policy maintained from misplaced missionary zeal (of a generation long dead) and just plain old garden variety spite.

        A perfect opportunity has arisen to point at the true root cause, and invite some much-needed excavation; I believe this is what is commonly referred to as a ‘teaching moment’. I can think of few more qualified than those residing on the Couch.

        • Trotsky's ghost says:

          Nora even has a little box attached to her blog: “Did you find this article useful?” …like the utilities help page has. Unlike them however there is no space to write what you actually thought of this disingenuous crap from “the director….”
          Now, after years of being part of the mass incarceration program for people of color she’s become woke! After you with the icepick.

  6. Pink Cross III says:

    The government of Israel has just announced they are moving forward with the legalization of cannabis use for all citizens over the age of 21. They also promised to allow easier access to medical cannabis, erase criminal records of users, and advance controlled recreational sales.
    MK Sharren Haskel (Likud) and MK Ram Shefa (Blue & White) will jointly advance the legislation,” said the two parties in a statement.

  7. Servetus says:

    Multiple drug references in the George Floyd killing:

    June 9, 2020 — …Drug use has been referenced three times thus far, first by Officer Tao Thao, one of the four officers on the scene of Floyd’s killing, once by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner, who conducted Floyd’s original autopsy, and once by the Hennepin County Attorney in a complaint based on the autopsy.

    Officer Thao stood with his arms crossed and boots firmly planted on the ground, forcefully preventing bystanders’ attempts to intervene with the officer behind him who was kneeling on a man’s neck for nearly nine minutes. Of course, Thao himself could have intervened, as was the policy of the Minneapolis Police Department. Instead, Thao said to the bystanders, “This is why you don’t do drugs kids.”

    Thao’s statement serves a double purpose. Not only does it perform the age-old police function of admonishing potential drug users, it also redirects blame to Floyd himself, as if to say that the extrajudicial killing being observed is an acceptable punishment for drug use. […]

    Then on May 29, before the full autopsy was released, the Hennepin County attorney released a criminal complaint that purported to summarize the autopsy of the medical examiner. The report cited “no physical findings that support a diagnosis of traumatic asphyxiation or strangulation.” Instead, the report read, “The combined effects of Mr. Floyd being restrained by police, his underlying health conditions and any potential intoxicants in his system likely contributed to his death.”

    The implication that had Floyd been in better health and not using “intoxicants” he would have survived asphyxiation drew outrage throughout the U.S., including from Floyd’s family, who hired their own pathologist to conduct an independent autopsy. The results of this autopsy, released June 1, asserted that George Floyd’s death was a result of “asphyxiation from sustained pressure.” […]

    Police often imply that drug use, or potential drug use, denotes that the person in question poses a physical danger, particularly when that person is Black. […]

  8. Abe Clark says:

    Guess who’s fighting legalization in the promised land?

  9. David Simon has an idea on how to fix policing via @YouTube

    The creator of “The Wire” has some choice words about the war on drugs. Its worth watching.

  10. kaptinemo says:

    No denying now the DrugWar’s seminal, central role in the unfolding events we are literally witnessing before our eyes.

    Keep in mind as well we are in a very real DEPRESSION. We’ve been saying here for years, dammit, for almost 2 decades that the DrugWar will be retired, partly through demographics, partly because a scheisse economy will not allow for its continuance.

    Those most harmed by the DrugWar are now its new paymasters, tax-wise, and want nothing to do with it for a plethora of reasons manifesting as civil unrest. Remaining support for it faces literally a violent backlash, for its coupling with racism is historically undeniable. It’s been evident here for so many years, but the normies still need reminding that the DrugWar’s ideological parents were racism and bigotry.

    Recall what happened when we made it a point to emphasize the connection between alcohol Prohibition and the cannabis version? Within weeks, the MSM was repeating that connection, to the point you are hard pressed, now, to find an article on cannabis that doesn’t mention prohibition.

    It’s that time again, folks. Only this time, we really are going to end this monster. A horrible tragedy has opened the way to prevent any more such. You don’t have to work hard to establish that connection; we’ve all been there, before. In fact, it’s already being made there. Show Ethan Nadelmann’s TED talk on how the US infected the world with the DrugWar insanity (a few weeks after that concept appeared here). It won’t take much.

    A whole galaxy of influences have finally met where a societal majority will reject the principles providing the foundation for drug prohibition. I fully expect a Federal re-legalization bill will pass legislative committees with almost unanimous support in Congress before the end of the year.

  11. kaptinemo says:

    I see Trump as a pragmatist. If he thinks there might be a slight advantage to ending cannabis prohibition on his watch as part of his ‘legacy’, then, if only out of sheer calculation, he’d probably do it.

    “Let all the poisons that lurk in the mud, hatch out!” They are. The poisons of prohibition have been hatching out, singly, over the decades. Now, more and more are popping up to the surface, all at once, and the effect is finally waking up normies as to why police are so aggressive..and why it’s not a good idea to send your cops to a foreign country to train them. They might pick up some bad habits from their teachers…

  12. Nice article at The Fresh Toast by an attorney:

    It’s Time To Disband The DEA

    … “The Drug Policy Alliance has long tracked racial disparities in the War on Drugs. Nearly 80% of people in federal prison and 60% of people in state prisons for drug offenses are Black or Latino. In addition, Black people and Native Americans are more likely to be killed by law enforcement than other racial or ethnic groups.”

    “The DEA’s existence conflicts with the simple premise that Black Lives Matter. The DEA has endangered and ruined Black lives throughout its history, while never succeeding in its statutory role of preventing drug use and stopping the drug trade. Now the DEA is trying to arrest protesters who seek to ensure that America’s “crime fighters” finally stop endangering those they are sworn to serve and protect. The DEA encompasses all that’s wrong with policing in America. Shutting down the DEA will not immediately fix everything, but it would be a huge step in the right direction.”

    “It’s time we disband the DEA.”

    Daniel Shortt is an attorney at Harris Bricken and this article was originally published on the Canna Law Blog.

  13. WalStMonky says:


    Doesn’t it go without saying that anything bad that happens anywhere in the general vicinity of cannabis was caused by the cannabis?

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