Contraband and Human Rights
From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Mon Mar 29, 2004 1:58 am
Subject: contraband and human rights (was: WTC)
At 04:01 29.03.2004, Christine
As for the "drug culture" - that
too is a complex and emotional issue and I feel I have some understanding
of the pros and cons involved. However, I have found many intelligent
and insightful things written by or forwarded by people on many
sites other than Anthroposophy sites per se. I even admit that
when I first looked at Tarjei's site I was a little "put
off" by the fact that he has articles relating to marijuana
along side articles on Steiner. But I got over it.
I have a few comments here: On my website,
everything related to marijuana and cannabis is collected in
a separate section, although the site may be a little
disorganized: On the third index page at http://www.uncletaz.com/index3.html
there's Anthroposophy and RS lectures and portraits until you
get to "Anthropop Photos" (Rudolf Steiner pictures)
and then "Anarchist Photos" (pictures of myself and
co-workers at "Gateavisa" involved in a political campaign
prank related to the legalization of marijuana). The link below
will take you to the marijuana section at http://www.uncletaz.com/marijuana/
This particular section does indeed present
a "drug culture", but it's primarily a human rights
issue, not a recommended lifestyle. I was in prison for cannabis
as a teenager in 1969, and I'm still being severely punished
for it 35 years later. I am denied a green card to the U.S. for
life because of it in spite of my mother being born in the U.S.
and I was forced to leave the country after 12 years illegally
in the U.S. because of that old cannabis conviction. I am denied
access to certain jobs today because of it (after 35 years!),
including sitting in a damn traffic toll booth. Ten years ago
I visited a friend of mine (whom I've known since we were 20)
in a maximum security prison, where he was serving a twelve year
sentence for cannabis import and distribution, motivated only
by a desire to keep his pipe filled up. He is a photographer
by profession and has written a book and released a CD with songs
about life in the cage. A very gentle and innocent soul. People
get 3-5 years for murder. My friend was threatened with 21 years
if he didn't "cooperate."
I believe most people have a "button"
somewhere that nobody wants to push, and this is mine. I'm not
a habitual smoker of cannabis and/or marijuana; I do what I call
my socio-political duty of inhaling the substance two
or three times a year (once in 2004 so far) so I can honestly
speak as a smoker when engaging the police in public debates.
The War on Drugs, the War on Terror - what's
next? The War on Subversive Thinking and the War on Suspicious
Looks? The Salem witch hunt all over again? Fear is the weapon.
The fear of terorists getting to you before cancer or a road
accident does; the fear of your kids turning into junkies because
people like myself smoke weed twice a year. It's all propaganda.
And when they punish you after 35 years, it's a war between people
like myself and the governments. A propaganda war.
Another friend of mine was arrested by customs
officials on his way from Denmark to Norway. Because his name
was in the police database in connection with a former drug arrest,
he was held for 48 hours, subjected to X-rays that almost made
him sterile, force-fed laxatives and placed upon a transparent
toilet until all his diarrhea was out. They wanted to know if
he had swallowed contraband! Holy Macro, I wish our members of
parliament or members of the fearful bourgeoisie who endorse
and sustain such torturous legislation would be subjected to
this treatment! I read about a woman who went berserk when she
was forcefully held down while a police woman dug in her vagina
and rectum looking for contraband. She was a prostitute and a
thief, and then you don't have any rights, just like my friend
whose name turned up in the police database. No rights whatsoever.
So why do you think there is "drug culture"
on my website? Because I believe "Everybody Must Get Stoned"
My first-mentioned friend above was serving
his twelve years - paroled after eight years - in a maximum security
prison near Oslo called Ila Landsfengsel - "Ila National
Penitentiary". Heavy clients. Murderers. A guy serving a
sentence identical to that of my friend had been convicted for
double homicide with a chain saw - a rare crime in this country.
But it tells you a lot about how the courts look at cannabis
and marijuana. But that's not all. It was in this very same prison
my mother was locked up in World War II, during the Nazi occupation.
In those days the joint - i.e. the prison, not the reefer - was
called Grini, administered by the German Nazis. My mother was
incarcerated for "the crime" of being an American citizen.
Watch out, because we're coming full circle
here. My father was a telegrapher for Milorg during the war.
Milorg, short for Military Organization, was the underground
resistance movement. His contraband was illegal radio transmitters.
He had one very close call with the Germans, but he lucked out
by playing ignorant.
When I hear objections to my drug culture
propaganda or whatever you prefer to call it on the grounds that
it's illegal, I see no difference between radio transmitters
and weed. None whatsoever. Why? Because Martin Luther King said:
"An unjust law is no law at all."
Or as Theokles says to Lucifer in Schuré's
play: "Rather a hundred thousand deaths and everlasting
pain than forego a single fragment of my liberty!"
"Facts are stupid things."
-- Ronald Reagan
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