This is a great example of an area where the Tea Party and Occupy can see eye-to-eye. Rand Paul 2016!
Here’s why this bill is important: A guy–let’s call him Weldon–sells pot to a government informant, who notices that Weldon has a gun strapped to his ankle. The next time the informant buys pot from Weldon, he notices a gun in Weldon’s car. When police move in to arrest Weldon, they find guns in his house. Weldon has never fired these guns, never used them to coerce anyone. He has, however, sold pot three times* while in possession of a firearm, so prosecutors charge Weldon with “multiple counts of possession of a gun during a drug trafficking offense.” He is convicted. What do you think Weldon’s sentence is? Ten years? Twenty years? Try 55 years–five for the first gun-related offense, and 25 for the second and third. That’s the mandatory minimum federal sentence for Weldon’s charges, meaning the judge who sentenced him could not sentence him to less time–only more.
Weldon Angelos is a real person, by the way, and the existence of a safety valve in 2004, the year he was sentenced, would’ve allowed the judge to sentence him to 18 years instead of 55 (that was the judge’s preference). It would’ve meant Weldon, who was 24 at sentencing, would go free at age 42 instead of age 79. But because the federal system has mandatory minimums with no parole, Weldon will spend most of the rest of his life behind bars for selling several hundred dollars worth of pot while wearing a gun on his ankle.
via Today Rand Paul and Pat Leahy Introduced a Bill to Fix Our Atrocious Federal Mandatory Minimum Laws – Hit & Run : Reason.com.
This might not be the best hill to die on, but up yours, UN. And get lost, DC. This is the State of Washington, and we can manage our own affairs.
A United Nations-based drug agency urged the United States government on Tuesday to challenge the legalization of marijuana for recreational use in Colorado and Washington, saying the state laws violate international drug treaties.
The International Narcotics Control Board made its appeal in an annual drug report. It called on Washington, D.C., to act to “ensure full compliance with the international drug control treaties on its entire territory.”
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said last week that he was in the last stages of reviewing the Colorado and Washington state laws. Holder said he was examining policy options and international implications of the issue. Marijuana is illegal under federal law.
The federal government could sue the states over legalization or decide not to mount a court challenge. Washington and Colorado became the first states to pass laws legalizing the recreational use of marijuana in last fall’s elections.
via UN: Colo., Wash. legal pot violates drug treaties | Nation & World | The Seattle Times.
Mexico is a mess. My stance on it is to both tighten the border and loosen immigration restrictions for those who will come legally. It’s such a headache to come to this country if you want to, and the large part of the immigrant population from Mexico are good for the USA. We make it easier for the good ones, and crack down on the bad ones, and do our best to stop subsidizing the insanity of the cartels and corrupt governments in Mexico.
A group of tourists have been raped by a masked gang who raided their holiday villa in the Mexican resort of Acapulco.
Local authorities said the armed men burst into the bungalow rented by 13 Spanish tourists, six women and seven men, and a Mexican woman, in Playa Bonfil, facing the Pacific Ocean, near the famous Punta Diamante area, local authorities said.
The attackers gagged and tied up the men with phone cables and then raped the women, who they had bound up with their own bikinis.
via Acapulco: Tourists Tied up with Bikinis and Gang Raped by Masked Robbers – IBTimes UK.
Mexico has very strict gun control. Except when our ATF slips a few guns over the border, I guess.
Authorities in the northern Mexican state of Nuevo Leon have concluded the work of recovering and identifying a total of 17 bodies found in a well, officials said Wednesday.
All of the victims were associated with the band Kombo Kolombia.
The bodies, the last of which were recovered Tuesday afternoon, were found inside the well at an abandoned ranch in the town of Mina thanks to information from a band member who had escaped from the gunmen that abducted the group last week.
The bodies of the victims – 13 musicians, one of them a Colombian citizen; three assistants; and one sound engineer – have already been handed over to their relatives, the state Attorney General’s Office said.
The group performed at a private function at the La Carreta bar – in Hidalgo, a town next to Mina – on Thursday night, just hours before a group of roughly 10 gunmen showed up in four SUVs and kidnapped 18 musicians and crew.
via Latin American Herald Tribune – 17 Bodies Found in Well in Mexico.