Miami Herald _FL_ 1/1/1997 - 31/12/2017
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61 US FL: South Florida Man Smokes Marijuana At Taxpayers' ExpenseTue, 11 Jan 2011
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Tasker, Fred Area:Florida Lines:195 Added:01/11/2011

For Three Decades, a Federal Agency Has Supplied Irvin Rosenfeld With Marijuana to Control a Rare Disease. He Tells About It in a New Book.

On a recent chilly morning, Fort Lauderdale stockbroker Irvin Rosenfeld interrupted his client calls for a quick marijuana cigarette in the company parking lot. Then he went back to work.

The cigarette - perfectly legal for him - was one of about 120,000 the federal government has provided to him at taxpayer expense for the past 29 years. He's one of only four people who remain in a now-closed "compassionate" drug program that at its peak provided 13 patients across the country with daily doses of pot to help manage medical conditions.

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62 US FL: Presidential Hopeful: Legalize MarijuanaThu, 02 Dec 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Caputo, Marc Area:Florida Lines:55 Added:12/02/2010

A self-made millionaire Republican is campaigning in Florida on a platform of spending cuts and less government.

It's not Rick Scott, anymore.

This is Gary E. Johnson -- a former New Mexico governor and marijuana-legalization advocate -- who's putting out Florida feelers in a possible bid for the presidency in 2012.

Johnson's campaign-style stops in Tallahassee, Melbourne and Orlando last week reveal that the presidential race is already at a low boil in the nation's largest swing state. Without Florida, Republicans say, they can't recapture the White House.

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63 US FL: Column: California Vote Could Have Snowball EffectSun, 24 Oct 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Oppenheimer, Andres Area:Florida Lines:103 Added:10/28/2010

MEXICO CITY -- If California voters approve a proposition calling for the legalization of marijuana in the Nov. 2 midterm elections, get ready for a domino effect in Mexico and the rest of Latin America. It is not likely to be immediate, but it will be hard to stop in the near future.

Granted, the Obama administration would most likely challenge California's Proposition 19 -- it would allow adults to consume marijuana for pleasure -- in the courts if it were approved.

Most polls show that the California proposal has a better than even chance of passing.

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64 US FL: Column: Justice For All? Not Quite YetWed, 29 Sep 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Pitts, Leonard Jr. Area:Florida Lines:97 Added:10/03/2010

It's a funny thing about words: sometimes, they convey meaning but not necessarily understanding.

Take the term "racial profiling." Author Joseph Collum of Plantation says the Oxford English Dictionary credits him with coining it in 1989 when he was an investigative TV reporter in New Jersey. We all get its meaning: law enforcement personnel targeting citizens by their skin color.

But to truly understand what racial profiling is, it helps to hear a story like that of Chris Stubbs.

She was a 27-year-old black woman, driving home to North Carolina from New York where she had gone to pick up $10,000 from a friend's brother; the brother, who owned a car dealership, had agreed to stake Stubbs' dream of opening a restaurant.

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65 US FL: Column: DEA Shouldn't Pay For Help To TranslateThu, 16 Sep 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Burnett, James H. Area:Florida Lines:85 Added:09/20/2010

I stand corrected on a claim I made seven years ago that Multnomah County, Ore., was run by the dumbest bureaucrats on earth, after they sought to hire a Klingon translator to communicate with mental patients who prefer the language invented for Star Trek.

I stand corrected because the Drug Enforcement Administration is looking to hire people who can speak "Ebonics" in Miami and several other cities, and can translate it for agents who are having a hard time understanding what suspected drug dealers are saying on the business end of wiretaps.

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66 US FL: Column: Obama Could Help Stop Mexico's BloodshedSat, 04 Sep 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Oppenheimer, Andres Area:Florida Lines:112 Added:09/07/2010

MEXICO CITY -- Here's an interesting detail about the much-publicized recent arrest of Mexico's top drug baron Edgar Valdez Villarreal, better known as "La Barbie" -- he was caught with a U.S.-made M-16 semiautomatic rifle and other sophisticated arms that Mexican officials suspect were smuggled from the United States.

In Mexico, U.S. arms smuggling is a big issue. President Felipe CalderA3n said during a visit to Washington in May that of all the guns and assault rifles seized in Mexico over the past three years, "more than 80 percent of those we have been able to trace came from the United States."

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67 US FL: Column: Drug Sentences Create Racial Caste SystemSat, 17 Jul 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Pitts, Leonard Area:Florida Lines:86 Added:07/20/2010

Ron Allen probably thinks Alice Huffman has been smoking something.

Huffman, president of the California Conference of the NAACP, recently declared support for an initiative that, if passed by voters in November, will decriminalize the use and possession of marijuana. Huffman sees it as a civil rights issue.

In response, Bishop Allen, founder of a religious social activism group called the International Faith-Based Coalition, has come out swinging. "Why would the state NAACP advocate for blacks to stay high?" he demanded last week at a news conference in Sacramento. "It's going to cause crime to go up. There will be more drug babies." Allen wants Huffman to resign.

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68 US FL: PUB LTE: Drug War Has Been A FailureFri, 16 Jul 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Dowdy, Lorraine Area:Florida Lines:34 Added:07/16/2010

In his July 8 Other Views column, The laws can't curb our appetites, George Will talks about the unintended consequences of Prohibition in the 1920s, including the growth of organized crime.

He likens Prohibition to our government's current initiatives to encourage change from detrimental eating to habits that destroy the environment. I am amazed that he failed to realize that he should have compared it to the failed war on drugs.

This prohibition has created a multibillion-dollar industry worldwide, contributed to the political instability of many countries, turned the United States into a nation with one of the highest incarceration rates and fueled illegal border crossings.

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69 US FL: Column: A New Legal Caste System? Read The BookSat, 26 Jun 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Pitts, Leonard Area:Florida Lines:91 Added:06/27/2010

'You have to face the fact that the whole problem is really the blacks. The key is to devise a system that recognizes this all while not appearing to." -- Richard Nixon as quoted by H.R. Haldeman, supporting a get-tough-on drugs strategy.

"They give [black people] time like it's lunch down there. You go down there looking for justice, that's what you find: just us." -- Richard Pryor.

Michelle Alexander was an ACLU attorney in Oakland, preparing a racial profiling lawsuit against the California Highway Patrol. The ACLU had put out a request for anyone who had been profiled to get in touch. One day, in walked this black man.

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70 US FL: Group Seeks to Decriminalize Marijuana in Miami BeachThu, 17 Jun 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Smiley, David Area:Florida Lines:96 Added:06/18/2010

Pro-Marijuana Activists, Backed by the Director of the Cocaine Cowboys' Documentaries, Are Pushing to Decriminalize Marijuana in Miami Beach

Miami Beach voters could cast ballots for Mary Jane come November should a budding effort to decriminalize marijuana possession in the city gain traction.

In front of City Hall Wednesday evening, the Committee for Sensible Marijuana Policy announced a drive to gather signatures in support of a proposed amendment that would make "personal" possession of marijuana in Miami Beach a civil code violation punishable by a mere fine.

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71 US FL: PUB LTE: Legalize DrugsTue, 01 Jun 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Sharpe, Robert Area:Florida Lines:36 Added:06/03/2010

I disagree with your May 26 editorial Jamaica's day of reckoning. The violence in Jamaica is because of drug prohibition, not in spite of it.

The U.S. drug war has done little other than give us the highest incarceration rate in the world. Zero tolerance hasn't deterred use.

The United States has higher rates of drug use than European Union countries that have decriminalized.

Drug prohibition finances organized crime at home and terrorism abroad, which is then used to justify increased drug war spending.

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72 US FL: Editorial: Jamaica's Day Of ReckoningWed, 26 May 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL)          Area:Florida Lines:80 Added:05/26/2010

Jamaica is paying a painfully high price to learn the elementary lesson that no government can afford to ignore or tolerate drug trafficking.

At last count, with gunshots still echoing across the capital Tuesday, at least 30 people had died in the slums of Kingston as police and soldiers fought to regain control of crime-ridden neighborhoods that drug kingpins and their armed gangs have long considered personal fiefdoms.

The mayhem involves reputed underworld boss Christopher "Dudus" Coke. His various nicknames include "Mister President," an indication of his power and status in Jamaica. It began after Prime Minister Bruce Golding dropped his nine-month refusal to extradite Coke to the United States to face federal drug charges in New York. Coke's ties to Mr. Golding and his Jamaica Labour Party were said to be behind the government's initial unwillingness to agree to the extradition.

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73 US FL: Editorial: Helping Mexico In Drug WarWed, 19 May 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL)          Area:Florida Lines:66 Added:05/23/2010

Fight Against Drug Criminals Is Also Our Fight

President Felipe Calderon's state visit to Washington on Wednesday comes at a time when Mexico is under siege by drug criminals as never before. The violence has claimed some 23,000 lives since Mr. Calderon declared war on drug gangs.

Traffickers are fighting to control the drug supply into the United States. Never have the two countries faced a common enemy as powerful and as dangerous as these gangs.

This puts a premium on mutual efforts to combat narcotics gangsters, requiring both leaders to go beyond the customary expressions of friendship and work to defuse the tensions that threaten to drive Mexico and the United States apart.

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74 Mexico: As Death Toll in Drug War Rises, Mexicans Short ofSun, 02 May 2010
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Johnson, Tim Area:Mexico Lines:133 Added:05/03/2010

As the death toll has climbed from drug-related violence in Mexico, it's fallen largely to newspapers to keep the count.

Two weeks ago, a government report that legislators leaked spoke of 22,700 deaths over little more than a three-year period, a far higher body count than the 18,000 or so given by El Universal, a leading newspaper.

President Felipe Calderon's aides won't confirm the report, and some political analysts have seized on the lack of transparency as an element in the Mexican leader's difficulties in rallying the nation in the campaign against heavily armed narcotics syndicates.

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75 US FL: OPED: Mexico Fighting a War It Can't WinSun, 27 Dec 2009
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Castaneda, Jorge G. Area:Florida Lines:110 Added:12/27/2009

MEXICO CITY -- Three years ago this month, Mexican President Felipe Calderon donned military fatigues and declared a full-scale war on drugs, ordering the Army into Mexico's streets, highways, and villages. Back then, Calderon received broad support, both domestically and from abroad, for what was viewed as a brave, overdue, and necessary decision. Tangible results were predicted to come soon.

Moreover, George W. Bush's administration quickly promised American support -- the so-called Merida Initiative, signed in February, 2007 - -- and public-opinion polls showed that Calderon had, in one fell swoop, left behind the travails of his close and questioned electoral victory, gaining the trust of the Mexican people. But today, things look very different.

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76 US FL: PUB LTE: Drug War a FailureMon, 14 Dec 2009
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Sharpe, Robert Area:Florida Lines:41 Added:12/14/2009

Regarding Andres Oppenheimer's Dec. 10 column U.S. may take new look at 'war on drugs,' the drug war is a cure worse than the disease. Attempts to limit the supply of illegal drugs while demand remains constant only increase the profitability of drug trafficking.

For addictive drugs like heroin, a spike in street prices leads desperate addicts to increase criminal activity to feed desperate habits. The drug war doesn't fight crime, it fuels crime.

With alcohol prohibition repealed, liquor bootleggers no longer gun each other down, nor do consumers go blind drinking unregulated bathtub gin. While U.S. politicians ignore the drug war's historical precedent, European countries are embracing harm reduction, a public-health alternative based on the principle that both drug abuse and prohibition have the potential to cause harm.

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77 US FL: Column: US May Take New Look At `War On Drugs'Thu, 10 Dec 2009
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Oppenheimer, Andres Area:Florida Lines:111 Added:12/10/2009

If you had asked me 10 years ago whether the United States will ever change its interdiction-focused counternarcotics policies -- and perhaps even decriminalize marijuana consumption at home -- I would have told you, "never." Today, I say, "perhaps."

Earlier this week, in a tacit admission that current U.S. anti-drug policies are not working, the House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill to create an independent commission to review whether the U.S. anti-drug policies of the past three decades in Latin America are producing positive results.

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78 US FL: Column: It's High TimeSun, 25 Oct 2009
Source:Miami Herald (FL) Author:Parker, Kathleen Area:Florida Lines:93 Added:10/25/2009

In an act of merciful sanity, the Obama administration has made good on its promise to stop interfering with states that allow the medical use of marijuana. Clink-clink, hear-hear, salud, cheers, et cetera.

Attorney General Eric Holder's announcement surely comes as a relief to the many who rely on cannabis to ease suffering from various ailments. This doesn't let drug traffickers off the hook. It merely means that 14 states that provide for some medical marijuana uses no longer need fear federal raids on dispensaries and users operating under state law.

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79 US FL: Editorial: Uproar Over U.S. 'Bases' In Colombia Is PhonyWed, 12 Aug 2009
Source:Miami Herald (FL)          Area:Florida Lines:62 Added:08/13/2009

Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, never one to let facts get in his way, is stoking another anti-American controversy among his neighbors. This one involves non-existent U.S. military "bases" in Colombia.

Given the region's traditional sensitivity to claims of U.S. intervention, it's no surprise that he's getting traction, but it's disappointing to see moderate leaders like Brazil's Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva take the bait. "I don't like the idea of an American base in the region," Brazil's president said recently.

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80 US FL: Editorial: Pill Mills Be GoneWed, 24 Jun 2009
Source:Miami Herald (FL)          Area:Florida Lines:64 Added:06/27/2009

A New Prescription-Drug Monitoring Law Is Overdue

Finally, the state will regulate pill mills that have operated in South Florida with virtually no oversight, which allowed a black market of prescription pain-killers to flourish, selling to dealers as far away as Massachusetts.

The new prescription-monitoring law, signed by Gov. Charlie Crist last week, closes loopholes that had exempted from state inspections those pain clinics that don't take insurance.

Incredibly, such clinics, which have proliferated over the past few years, were able to avoid background checks of their owners and employees -- even though such scrutiny is required at legitimate health clinics that take insurance.

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