Aug. 11, 2005

Emery vs Tandy: On Canadian Sovereignty

The story so far:

In late 2002 the US Drug Czar, John P. Walters attends a $500 per table luncheon sponsored, ironically, by the Vancouver Board of Trade to discuss the illegal trade in marijuana. How this came to be on the agenda is a testament to the willingness of business to play lap-dog to U.S. power brokers. Also attending was well known marijuana advocate, activist, and politician Marc Emery. At this "trade meeting" were also many members of various police and drug enforcement entities besides the DEA. Not one to be intimidated by what to many would be considered a hostile environment, Emery proceeded to counter Walter's more outrageous claims with commentary, which in summary, can best be described by one particularly apropos epithet.... "Liar!". Words were thrown back and forth amongst the Emery party and the drug-warrior faithful but without any further incident. In the end, Walters scuttled back home, leaving little doubt that he is not pleased with Mayor Larry Campbell's "Four Pillars" approach and no doubt at all about his hatred for at least *one* particular Canadian.

Fast forward to the spring of 2004 to a most unlikely, indeed bizarre scene that takes place on the highway leading out of Vancouver, B.C. A lone off-duty Vancouver City police officer is pulled over to the side of the highway by uniformed police officers...... Lone Star state police uniforms!. Unbelievable as it may seem, American police officers had pulled over a Canadian citizen, and illegally demanded that they be allowed to search his vehicle! Of course, the "citizen" was in fact a Vancouver city cop, this factor no doubt being the *only reason* why we ever heard anything about this episode whatsoever. When a person considers the number of coincidences that had to come together to have brought this one incident into the spotlight, it certainly makes me wonder what else has been going on that we haven't heard about.

In any case, the officer sued for wrongful arrest and recently won his case. Regardless, I notice that this event.... with its extremely serious sovereignty issues.... received very little attention from Canadian media. Again, I have to wonder why? Well, perhaps the answer to that is revealed when moving ahead to the arrest and imprisonment of Emery, a Canadian citizen, at the request of the DEA.

Marc Emery and several friends are busted for the crime of - get this... selling marijuana seeds. Now, do you seriously think the RCMP thought of this themselves? Has any Canadian ever been busted for seeds in the last 30 years? Do we even care about such things? Of course not.

So how did this happen? For an answer to that we turn to Seattle Intelligencer reporter Joel Connelly, who has quoted the new Drug Czar, DEA head-honcho Karen Tandy as saying, quote:

"Today's arrest of Mark (sic) Scott Emery, publisher of Cannabis Culture magazine and the founder of a marijuana legalization group, is a significant blow not only to the marijuana trafficking trade in the U.S. and Canada, but also to the marijuana legalization movement.
Hundreds of thousands of dollars of Emery's illicit profits are known to have been channeled to marijuana legalization groups active in the United States and Canada. Drug legalization lobbyists now have one less pot of money to rely on."

Now, I'm not 100% sure about the laws in the U.S., but I would think that using taxpayer dollars to obstruct the democratic process may run somewhat contrary to the oft-touted (yet seldom heeded) Constitution of the United States of America. But then, since 9/11, what's new? Indeed. I'll tell you.

The Bush government is now extending their war against non-prescription drugs to Canadian citizens.....with pot seeds. What does it take for it to become clear to everyone that Bush is pushing, not just his military war, but a war of oppression against those persons who do not hold to the regressive views of his fundamentalist supporters. It is now quite clear that the American conservatives are engaged in a blitz on immorality -- as they see it. I remind you that every fascist government of the last century started out doing precisely the same thing, and as such, it is equally obvious that such an attack must be turned back.

To that end, we have been presented with a perfect avenue of counter-attack. The DEA has violated Canadian sovereignty with the Emery arrest; a fact that can be used to great advantage by those who wish to point out the lawlessness of the American government and it's various law-enforcement agencies. It is time to put them back in their places. We can and we should. WE NEED TO.

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