August 14, 2012

Federal MMJ crackdown speculated to be a diversion from Fast and Furious scandal

As public scrutiny of the United States government’s increasingly opaque actions rises, not only have marijuana advocates sought rhyme or reason for the ongoing crackdown on the industry as well as ways to legally evade the prosecutions put forth by the United States’ attorney generals. In northern California, facilities in San Francisco have faced closure and the seizure of assets by the IRS while facilities nearby in San Jose remain both untargeted and illegal, as declared in February of this year. When repeatedly asked why the government continues to strike down these state-regulated shops, Attorney General Melinda Haag has cited the protection of students and the state regulatory systems some dispensaries fail to comply with. The public looked on with increasingly skeptical eyes as the war on illegal facilities became a indiscriminate buck-shot blast against all dispensaries who sell the federally classed Schedule I substance. Despite this and other scientifically inaccurate allegations made by officials, it is the closure of some of San Francisco’s most loved and law-abiding facilities that has begun to strike heavy discord between the suffering industry and the federal government’s still unexplained actions.

Almost a year after Attorney General Eric Holder announced his crackdown on the marijuana industry, California’s dispensaries underwent forfeiture notices and DEA search and seizure that has rendered almost half of the state’s facilities now closed, and marijuana-tolerant individuals and organizations are pushing harder to expose this meaningless war and find a legal out against the federal charges brought against these facilities. Journalist Martin Lee proposes that the quickly ignited war on marijuana was incited by Holder to divert public attention away from his misconduct of the Fast and Furious gun-scandal. Citing congruities in the timelines, Lee reasons that California’s Proposition 215 had caused no concerns for the government over public health since it was put into effect in 1996, yet on October 7, 2011, Holder both wrote a letter to Representative Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) defending his actions regarding the scandal and hastily called forth a press conference in which he announced the DOJ’s plans to target the marijuana industry. In his modern sociopolitical climate, conspiracy and lack of transparency in the government have become well-known, publicized issues which is further highlighted by President Obama’s claim of executive privilege concerning the documents Holder currently faces contempt for (CNN).

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