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Northern Resistance
Anti-weed SWAT teams go wild in da UP, eh?
by Rev. Steven B. Thompson

Posted by the Coffee Coaster with permission of the author

To the Editors of Northern Michigan Dailies:

The following letter comes to my attention from a reader of the Coffee Coaster newsletter. While the editor has not been able to independently verify the stories of Reverend Thompson about Upper Peninsula police aggression, documented Drug Prohibition atrocities are commonplace. Clearly, all good cops devoted to protecting the lives, liberties, and property of the citizenry advocate an immediate end to drug prohibition. Reverend Thompson points out that California is considering complete legalization of marijuana; Michigan and other states must do the same... or run the risk of armed bands of badged psychotic thugs trampling the rights of everyone. These bad guys must clearly be put away; the question is what will the drug goons do when the legislature pulls the plug on the Drug War? Hold up banks? Mug li'l ol' ladies? -- bw

Subject: Letter To The Editor

Friday, June 12, 2009, 8:21 AM

To the Editor,

Michigan residents should be aware that seven R-State Senators led by Sen. Wayne Kuipers have introduced Senate bills 616, 617, and 618 which if any one of them were to pass, would effectively kill what almost 64% of the voters in all 83 counties approved last November... protection for medical marijuana patients.

While I see this as nothing more than grandstanding on Sen. Kuipers part (he is running for U.S. House next year and Big Pharma is one of his biggest contributors), I consider it a direct slap in the face to everyone of us that voted yes. His hometown newspaper (Holland Sentinel) even stated in the first sentence of an article concerning the bills, that the voters made a mistake. What an insult and what a bunch of sore losers!!

I am also getting horror stories out of the U.P. from legit patients who have been busted by a SWAT team called UPSET (Upper Peninsula Straits Enforcement Team). Guns put to the head of a 61 year old mom and a 17 year old daughter by men dressed in black with ski-masks on, a 16-year-old daughter felt-up by a male officer putting his hands under her bra, and a statement made by an officer while shoving his knee into the back of a patient who had back surgery, "Bet you need your medical marijuana now motherf#%ker."

When contacted about these atrocities, the gentleman on the phone stated, "we don't give a f#%k what kind of laws are made below the bridge cause we live by a different set of laws up here!" Even if these weren't legit patients, is this how we want non-violent human-beings to be treated?? These are SWAT teams gone wild and it's time to pull the plug on them!

In California, AB390 has been introduced to completely legalize and tax cannabis there, and the governor has stated that he will sign it if it crosses his desk. Robert Downes of Northern Express (as well as other reporters around the state) boldly wrote an article, stating that the same thing needs to happen here in Michigan for the sake of our economy. Yet as long as we have political leaders like these seven Republican state senators who only represent themselves and their largest donors, it won't happen. Remember this when you cast your votes next year. Let your reps know now how you feel about this.

What we need now more than ever is a lot more compassion and understanding and a lot less condemning and judging. I am reminded of a song that Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young did after the Kent State killings, "Find the cost of freedom, buried in the ground. Mother Earth will swallow you, lay your body down." My 82-year old mom received her freedom on Dec.1,2008 and I find myself singing this song a lot here lately.

Rev. Steven B. Thompson,
Executive Director
Michigan NORML
Benzonia, MI

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