Pubdate: Thu, 08 April 1999
Source: Belleville News-Democrat (IL)
Copyright: Knight Ridder Newspapers 1999
Contact: P.O. Box 427, Belleville, IL 62222
Page: 4A
Author: J. W. 'Skip' Bennett


Americans tend to be compassionate citizens. Vigilance, however, is
needed to ensure that there is a buffer against fuzzy-headed liberal

There is mounting evidence that pot lovers and fellow travelers will
attempt to legalize so-called medical marijuana by placing this issue
on the ballot in Illinois in November 2000. There are a plethora of
solid, established, medical alternatives that do, will and can offer
superior pain and suffering relief to those with cancer, AIDS,
glaucoma, etc. Don't be fooled by this pied piper scheme - its
ultimate goal is to legalize all marijuana use.

The THC in pot during the 1970's gave all to many schools "potheads"
who fell behind and in many cases fell out. Extant THC potency is
significantly higher - and in Western Canada hydroponic marijuana is
so potent that a pound of it is going for the same price as cocaine.

We're losing the drug war because we've never fought it with the
sustained will and resources with which won World War II. Pot is a
gateway drug. In 36 years in law enforcement I've never met a doper
who didn't first toke up.

I have long advocated that officers who have reasonable grounds to
believe that a driver is impaired by alcohol should be able to call
for a "BATmobile" (Breath Alcohol Testing van) equipped with a team
consisting of a paramedic and a sworn officer. Said impaired driver
would be requested by the paramedic, in the privacy of the van's
restroom, to provide a urine sample. Noncompliance would be followed
up by a telephone call to a judge to ask for a search warrant for the
paramedic to draw blood.

WE would have the best evidence (much of it also video recorded) to
establish blood alcohol and other legal or illicit drugs in the
impaired suspect's system. 

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