Pubdate: Thu, 4 Nov 1999
Source: Eugene Weekly (OR)
Copyright: Eugene Weekly 1999.
Author: Allan Erickson


Thanks to the readers for their vote of support for Bill Conde as Activist
of the Year (Best of Eugene, 10/14). Thanks always to the staff of the
Weekly for their voice in our community (and our voice through them).

I've worked for Bill for five years now, and well, it is a trip. Bill is a
man in the public eye who has his supporters and his detractors. But he is
the Conde. And he is the one in our realm that has stood and weathered many
storms over a very contentious subject. The drug war that he fights is
America's longest, most expensive war ever.

When I started with Conde's Redwood I had spent five months looking for
work, ninety-eight percent of the applications I submitted required
urinalysis. Screw that. I do good work and my spare time is no one's business.

So now I end up not just selling lumber but becoming educated on the hemp
issue. Once you understand the story, the old history, and learn the truth
of what our government has done in the effort to eliminate the cannabis
plant, you see how sick and stupid, expensive, illegal and treasonous this
drug war process was and is. Bill has provided a valuable information
outlet for a lot of us who stand against it.

Since the raid by the Linn County Sheriff in September of 1998, life has
changed for me and those around me at work and at home. Every one of us at
Conde's felt last year like we had been stepped upon.

Bill has stood, not always gracefully but always with heart, his ground.
Right now, the vote by your readers is good med, because the last hit by
Sheriff Burright (at the Labor Day/Creedence Show) took a lot of wind out
of our (and Bill's) sails. But we are alive and here.

So what is left for Sheriff Dave? Harassing Bill. Imagine all they went
throught last year-multiagency task force, undercover investigation,
seizure of business tools and property-and they found what? A bag of pot.
Imagine that. They could have called and Bill would have told them he
smokes pot.

You are the citizen activists that will stand, educate and reclaim the
notion of personal freedom and individual sovereignty. We would have voted
for you all. 

Allan Erickson, Eugene

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