Pubdate: Thu, 06 Mar 2003
Source: Eugene Weekly (OR)
Copyright: 2003 Eugene Weekly
Author: Evan Stanley
Bookmark: (Cannabis)
Bookmark: (Ashcroft, John)
Bookmark: (Bush, George)


"Operation Pipe Dream" is a successful attempt to make headlines in our 
community. However, AG John Ashcroft says he was attempting to curb the 
drug trade.

With rhetoric of militarism and terrorist war terminology, Ashcroft and his 
highly criticized DEA arrested members of our community and attempted to 
cover their tracks by turning glass blowers into terrorists that "invaded 
the homes of families across the country without their knowledge."

At a time when selected rulers are attempting to convince the country to 
support their war, Ashcroft invades our community. Does this action reflect 
appropriate leadership? If Ashcroft wants to address drug trade justice, he 
need only look down the hall. Strengths in the "W" administration's 
military, and CIA global interests are most likely the real source of drugs 
into this country. If Ashcroft, or Mayor Torrey were concerned with 
national well-being, they might consider not profit-sharing with tobacco 
companies, as Oregon does.

Marijuana is renowned for its medicinal properties aiding cancer patients. 
Tobacco kills. Locally produced glassblown artwork, sometimes used as 
smoking pieces, are not even part of the drug trade. Ashcroft went out of 
his way to praise the DEA, which was criticized earlier in this year's 
White House office performance assessment as "unable to demonstrate its 
progress" in the war on drugs. "This is a great victory for the DEA," 
Ashcroft said. It diminishes trust in selected representatives, reinforces 
the intrusive powers that initiatives like the Patriot Act allow, and 
labels local artists, peaceful taxpayers, and parents as criminals.

Evan Stanley, Eugene
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