Life Issues / Family Ethics Political Action Committee of Southwest Washington

I-1922
2022 Initiative for Drug Decriminalization, Paused
Illicit drugs are dangerous and their use threatens the freedoms of others. I-1922 compliance is voluntary and fundamentally different than other notable decriminalization efforts. Our republic must not facilitate illicit drugs because "our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." John Adams 1,  2
   No on I-1922 Drug Decriminalization
State Info Pro Campaign Website Waalm.org
Initiative Text LifePac Facebook Discussion Oregon's Measure 110

PDC Reports,  Pro Campaign Materials Oregon Live 4/15/22, USSA News 4/30/22, FPIW 3/5/21 SB 5476 DD   SUDORS    Pro I-1922 Video


From the Pro I-1922 Website, Legislative action will be pursued ...

Washington State Activists Call Off Drug Decriminalization Ballot Effort Even As New Poll Shows Voter Support
Commit To Change, June 29, 2022


"The campaign behind an effort to decriminalize drugs and expand treatment and recovery services in Washington State has halted its push to qualify an initiative for November’s ballot ..."

I-1922 Allows Only For Confiscation Of Drugs:


The following text from the initiative shows that the possession of controlled substances as an unlawful act is stricken.  There are no other references in the initiative that would maintain the possession of controlled substances as unlawful, other than Sec 7, also below, which states that the drugs may be seized (see also RCW 69.50.505).  See more text excerpts here



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Permissive policy approach to drugs not working
Ann Donnelly, Columbian, March 6, 2022

We need a redesigned war on dangerous and addictive drugs. A torrent of fentanyl, heroin, opioids, and legal and illegal marijuana is wreaking havoc on our schools, neighborhoods and businesses. Our courts and jails are swamped with the burdens of crimes related to drugs. Mental health challenges, already staggering, are exacerbated.  Property crime is spiking in large part because of the addicts and the criminal opportunists in the drug trade who prey on them. Vancouver apartment dwellers tell me brazen drug deals are common around their buildings ...

Fentanyl Use Is Empowering? New York City’s Health Department delivers a deadly message
Dr. Kevin Sabet, WSJ opinion piece on NYC's drug use campaign, 6/29/22

The New York City Health Department’s “Let’s Talk Fentanyl” campaign made headlines for placing posters that promoted illegal drug use: “Don’t be ashamed you are using, be empowered that you are using safely.” Amid an unprecedented overdose crisis, public health officials should acknowledge the impossibility of “using safely.” Treatment with the goal of full recovery is the way to prevent overdoses.  

 


I-1922 Sponsored By Pro Legalization ACLU of Washington
All three directors for the pro I-1922 political action committee Commit to Change WA are ACLU officials.  The ACLU is notoriously pro drug legalization. 


Oregon Measure 110 (2020) Is Very Close To Legalization


Measure 110 explicitly requires only voluntary compliance (see Sec 22 below where failure to pay the fine has no consequences), and because of that it's practically legalization.  Decriminalization in other locations, like Portugal, is substantially different.  While some elements are the same, addicts must comply or they can still be incarcerated.   Portugal's program creator, Joao Goulao, said “decriminalization is not a silver bullet.  If you decriminalize and do nothing else, things will get worse."  Because of 110's explicitly voluntary nature, there may be no way for Oregon to achieve lower stats ever.  And in Washington, I-1922 is being orchestrated by the ACLU.  One could well imagine legalization to be their goal and mentality, which is a fantasy as those engaged in decriminalization efforts know.  And even further, as Howard Weissman, a director with the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse (US), said: "Until we address our seemingly insatiable desire to drink and get high, decriminalization of all drugs is just spitting in the wind."  That may be our biggest hurdle to overcome before we try decriminalization.  But decriminalization is a high cost, big government solution.  Lots more could be said on that issue.  Keeping narcotics criminal is the best choice.

 

Oregon Measure 110 News Articles:

Oregon State Rep: We Have Failed in Rehabilitation After Decriminalizing Drugs

Tucker Carlson Interview with State Rep Morgan, Rumble, Posted Jul 22, 2022

Oregon’s Drug Decriminalization A Giant Failure
Portland's decriminalization of hard drugs has been a massive failure as reported by law enforcement. 
Next News Network, June 16, 2022

Oregon overdoses reach record highs after decriminalization of hard drugs In November of 2020
Oregonians voted for Ballot Measure 110 which decriminalized personal possession of drugs such as heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, and LSD.
ERICAN NEWS Jun 3, 2022 10:19 AM EST

'Running amok and running unchecked:' Oregon state rep on drug decriminalization
Republican Lily Morgan discusses the consequences of Oregon's decision last year to decriminalize drug usage on 'Jesse Watters Primetime'
Video, June 3, 2022

Oregon overdose rates soared by 700% after decriminalizing ALL drugs last year
Officials admit millions in funding for treatment centers was held up and few offenders even bothered to use them but insist they will continue the scheme
Daily Mail, Jun 2, 2022

Oregon botched drug treatment plan tied to decriminalization
Oregon officials and lawmakers say efforts to get millions of dollars in funding to treatment centers and related services as part of the state's pioneering drug decriminalization have been botched even as drug addictions and overdoses increase
Associated Press, June 02, 2022

'Measure 110 has everything to do with it': Law enforcement says decriminalization has flooded Portland streets with drugs

Fentanyl is "everywhere" and officers are seizing more guns than ever, a Multnomah County Sheriff's Office sergeant said.
THV11.com, May 9, 2022

Oregon’s pioneering drug decriminalization hasn’t led many to seek help, as backers said it would
The effort ‘was presented to the public as pro-treatment, but it has been a complete failure in that regard,’ says Keith Humphreys, a Stanford addiction researcher and former White House drug policy adviser.
AP, Apr 5, 2022

Oregon’s bold drug decriminalization sees some success – but use still rising
Experts say decriminalization is not the problem – the new measure lacks a proper pathway to recovery amid the growing overdose crisis
The Guardian, Apr 4 2022


 
Drug Overdose Statistics Resources:

7/28: Delay in July Report.  Not yet published.

Opioid Overdose Public Health Surveillance Update May 19th 2022




From:  https://www.oregon.gov/oha/PH/PREVENTIONWELLNESS/
SUBSTANCEUSE/OPIOIDS/Documents/monthly
_opioid_overdose_related_data_report.pdf

From: https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/drug-overdose-data.htm

CDC Provisional Drug Overdose Death Counts

CDC: Multi-year Drug Overdose Mortality by State

Oregon Health Authority Opioid Overdose and Misuse

CDC: Drug Overdose Deaths in the United States, 1999–2020

AMA: Nation’s drug-related overdose and death epidemic continues to worsen *Updated May 12, 2022

From: https://www.statista.com/chart/25342/change-in-us-drug-overdose-deaths-by-state/

WORLD HEALTH RANKINGS

 

Vancouver B.C. Drug Decriminalization, June 2021

Thresholds for 15 drugs outlined in decriminalization plan sent by Vancouver to Health Canada
CTVNewsVancouver.ca , June 1, 2021


European Union News:       European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA)       The Portugal News

EMCDDA 2022 European Drug Report (English) (PDF)

"The take-home message that stands out from our analysis of drug trends in 2022 can be summarised as ‘Everywhere, Everything, Everyone’. Today, we face a situation where we can observe the impact of drug problems almost everywhere."

Drug Decriminalization In Portugal: Setting The Record Straight
Transform Drug Policy Foundation, 13 May 2021
A pro decriminalization report

The Netherlands as a narcostate and the emergence of a methamphetamine industry

smallwarsjournal.com, 05/27/2021

Portugal’s Approach to Drug Policy – what works and what does not?
Drug Policy Network SEE, 4/15/2021
"In drug policy debates reference is often made to Portugal as an example of a country with a successful approach to drug policy. Often, the country’s good results in reducing the drug problem are attributed to the decriminalisation policy instituted in 2001. But knowledge and understanding of the exact policy and its results is not always accurate and well-informed."

Is the Netherlands becoming a narco-state?

BBC News, 19 December 2019

Uses and Abuses of Drug Decriminalization in Portugal
"The significance of this legislation has been misunderstood. Decriminalization did not trigger dramatic changes in drug related behavior because, as an analysis of Portugal's predecriminalization laws and practices reveals, the reforms were more modest than suggested by the media attention they received."
Law & Social Inquiry, Summer 2015

Daphne Bramham: Decriminalization is no silver bullet, says Portugal's drug czar
Most outsiders know Portugal has decriminalized drugs. But most fail to understand that drugs remain illegal.
Vancouver (B.C.) Sun, September 14, 2018 


Illicit drugs in the EU: the situation is expanding in scale and complexity

3rd international drugs conference at Europol’s headquarters in The Hague, Dec 11, 2019

The myth of Portugal’s drug policy
St Louis Post Dispatch, by Howard Weissman  Aug 5, 2015
"Until we address our seemingly insatiable desire to drink and get high, decriminalization of all drugs is just spitting in the wind. "


Drug decriminalization in Portugal
Manuel Pinto Coelho, Chairman of Association for a Drug Free Portugal, Sept 10, 2010
"Drug decriminalization in Portugal is a failure, despite various reports published recently all over the world saying the opposite."

Drug Decriminalization in Portugal: Challenges and Limitations
Office of National Drug Control Policy (U.S.), August 2010


The Steep Cost of "Progressive" Drug Policy
 San Francisco has been the poster child of progressive drug policies for over a decade. Now the city is falling apart.
AALM.info, June 2022

"Progressive" Drug Policies Become the Equivalent of "End of Life Care" on the Streets. This is What Harm Reduction Looks Like.

Nellie Bowles loves her city of San Francisco but in the last decade, multiple forces have turned her beloved city into something she can no longer abide or even live in. One of those forces is over a decade-long victory march of progressive drug policies.

One such policy is a city-run Center for drug addicts. It's an open-air chain-link enclosure in what used to be a public plaza.

"On the sidewalks all around it, people are lying on the ground, twitching. There’s a free mobile shower, laundry, and bathroom station emblazoned with the words 'dignity' on wheels. A young man is lying next to it, stoned, his shirt riding up, his face puffy and sunburned. Inside the enclosure, services are doled out: food, medical care, clean syringes, referrals for housing. It’s basically a safe space to shoot up. The city government says it’s trying to help. But from the outside, what it looks like is young people being eased into death on the sidewalk, surrounded by half-eaten boxed lunches. A couple of years ago, this was an intersection full of tourists and office workers who coexisted, somehow, with the large and ever-present community of the homeless. I’ve walked the corner a thousand times. Now the homeless—and those who care for the homeless—are the only ones left ..."

 


New York City runs ad campaign 'empowering' heroin users
The ad, which was spotted on a New York City subway reads, "Don’t be ashamed you are using, be empowered that you are using safely."
Post Millennial, Jun 1, 2022

"New York City runs ad campaign 'empowering' heroin users
The ad, which was spotted on a New York City subway reads, "Don’t be ashamed you are using, be empowered that you are using safely."
A campaign by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is encouraging addicts not to be "ashamed," rather "be empowered" that they are "using safely." The ads are showing up on subways all over town.
The ad, which was spotted on a New York City subway reads, "Don’t be ashamed you are using, be empowered that you are using safely." The campaign appears to be designed to encourage the prevention of overdoses by giving tips on how to safely use illegal and dangerous narcotics.
The ad then gives tips to prevent an overdose beginning with the first tip, which is to "avoid using alone and take turns," thereby encouraging addicts to shoot up together.
Secondly, the ad suggested to "Start with a small dose and go slowly."
Third, the ad recommended having "Naloxone on hand." Naloxone can counteract an overdose but is not always effective and often times the user is too deep in the throws of an overdose to administer properly, if at all. If the drug is effective, users should then seek medical care. However, many do not and frequently die later ... The ad is geared towards what progressives call "Harm Reduction," which attempts to normalize drug use and is extremely ineffective."


May 2022

Compassionate And Effective Justice: A Plan To Deal With Marijuana Offenses That Does Not Involve Legalization Or Decriminalization Of Marijuana.  
Americans Against Legalizing Marijuana


Social Conservatives, Libertarians [pro drug legalization], And Aristotle
By Hunter Baker, First Things, Oct 7, 2009

"... Social conservatives, in contrast, line up more or less with Aristotle, who insisted that political life is about more than just mutual defense and commerce. Instead, political associations exist to enable us to develop a civic friendship whereby we will discover moral excellence as a community.

For social conservatives, that Aristotelian civic friendship means there is value in turning the law to certain moral purposes beyond things like mutual defense and enforcing contracts. Instead, we hope to make law in such a way that it promotes human flourishing and prevents or discourages things that lead to decay and decline.

Given that logic, we tend to want to legally promote and affirm things like marriage and the bearing of children within wedlock. Many of us would also, for example, probably support laws that require children to attend school up to a certain age (just not necessarily a public school!).

We believe in promoting or supporting these things (marriage, childbearing within wedlock, education) via the instrument of law because we believe they are fundamentally good for people and are good for our culture. Indeed, you will often hear social conservatives citing studies that show that individuals who successfully graduate from high school, get married, and delay childbearing until after marriage are extremely unlikely to live in poverty. The research also shows that children who grow up in traditional, two parent households, in the aggregate, tend to perform better in school, have less behavioral problems, are less likely to commit crimes, and are less likely to depend on public assistance when they grow up. For those reasons, and not merely as a matter of religious preference as others often believe, social conservatives support using the law to bolster social arrangements that improve human flourishing."



Misdemeanor Decriminalization (Journal Article Free Download)
Alexandra Natapoff, Vanderbilt Law Review, May 2015

Abstract
As the United States reconsiders its stance on mass incarceration, misdemeanor decriminalization has emerged as an increasingly popular reform. Seen as a potential cure for crowded jails and an overburdened defense bar, many states are eliminating jail time for minor offenses such as marijuana possession and driving violations, replacing those crimes with so-called "nonjailable" or "fine-only" offenses. This form of reclassification is widely perceived as a way of saving millions of state dollars-nonjailable offenses do not trigger the right to counsel-while easing the punitive impact on defendants, and it has strong support from progressives and conservatives alike. But decriminalization has a little-known dark side. Unlike full legalization, decriminalization preserves many of the punitive features and collateral consequences of the criminal misdemeanor experience, even as it strips defendants of counsel and other procedural protections. It actually expands the reach of the criminal apparatus by making it easier-both logistically and normatively-to impose fines and supervision on an ever- widening population, a population that ironically often ends up incarcerated anyway when they cannot afford fines or comply with supervisory conditions. The turn to fine-only offenses and supervision, moreover, has distributive implications. It captures poor, underemployed, drug-dependent, and otherwise disadvantaged defendants for whom fines and supervision are especially burdensome, while permitting well-resourced offenders to exit the process quickly and relatively unscathed. Finally, as courts turn increasingly to fines and fees to fund their own operations, decriminalization threatens to become a kind of regressive tax, turning the poorest populations into funding fodder for the judiciary and other government budgets. In sum, while decriminalization appears to offer relief from the punitive legacy of overcriminalization and mass incarceration, upon closer inspection it turns out to be a highly conflicted regulatory strategy that preserves and even strengthens some of the most problematic aspects of the massive U.S. penal system.



Seattle Just Became the Largest U.S. City To Approve Quasi-Decriminalization of Natural Psychedelics
The resolution urges police to refrain from arresting people for noncommercial production and distribution as well as possession
Reason.com. 10.5.2021

Seattle just became the largest city in the country with a hands-off policy for people who consume natural psychedelics. Yesterday the city council unanimously approved a resolution that says "the investigation, arrest, and prosecution of anyone engaging in entheogen-related activities should be among The City of Seattle's lowest enforcement priorities." It urges the Seattle Police Department to "move toward the formal codification and adoption of that practice as departmental policy."

The new policy, which is similar to the one approved by Washington, D.C., voters last November, applies to "any living, fresh, dried, or processed plant or fungal material, including teas or powders, that may contain currently scheduled or analog psychoactive indolamines, tryptamines, or phenethylamines, including, but not limited to, psilocybin mushrooms, ayahuasca tea, mescaline, and iboga." It covers "cultivation" and "sharing" of such "entheogens" as well as possession, which already was covered by a general city policy of refraining from arresting drug users ...

 

 

Decriminalization of Drug Use
Current Opinion in Psychiatry (PubMed.gov), Jul 2018

"Studies reporting on the positive outcomes of decriminalization remain scarce. The evidence needs to be more widespread in order to support the case for decriminalization."

 


The San Francisco Mess Proves Decriminalizing Drugs Doesn’t Work
The Federalist, Jan 21, 2020

President Donald Trump has expressed willingness to interfere in the West Coast’s seemingly intractable “homelessness” problem: “Donald Trump said he might ‘intercede’ to ‘clean up’ homelessness in San Francisco and Los Angeles, noting that world leaders ‘can’t be looking at that.’”

“That,” our noxious streets, certainly are a shame, only some of us have forgotten how to feel shame — or compassion. The “homelessness”crisis, which is really the opioid crisis dressed up in class warfare language, is manufactured. It was created, to a large extent, by the local judiciary, but also abetted by state laws and executive inaction.

A casual look at the city might leave one with the impression that the war on drugs has failed, with the decrepit people wondering the streets of San Francisco in a various states of delirium with large patches of skin falling off of them can be taken for a proof. On that assumption, of the failure of the war on drugs, outgoing District Attorney George Gascon traveled to Portugal to take a look at how the Mediterranean nation successfully decriminalized all drugs. Gascon wants to replicate the Portuguese experience here.

 

How likely is it that drugs are involved ...

Portland-area (Vancouver) leftist arrested for child sex crimes, urinating in Arby's milkshake mix at work
Stephen Sharp confessed to urinating into the milkshake mix on at least two occasions at a Vancouver, WA Arby's where he worked, saying it was for sexual gratification.
American News, May 17, 2022

While investigating a Vancouver, Washington man for the possession and distribution of child pornography, police discovered that Stephen Sharp had taken a video of himself urinating into the milkshake mix at a local Arby’s where he worked as a night shift manager.

According to the Vancouver Police Department, their Digital Evidence Cybercrime Unit had begun an investigation into 29-year-old Sharp’s possession and distribution of photos and videos depicting the sexual exploitation of children. On at least one occasion, such imagery was downloaded within proximity of an Arby’s located at 221 NE 104th Ave.

Sharp confessed to downloading and distributing child pornography and having a sexual interest in children during an interview with detectives on May 10.
A search warrant was subsequently executed on his digital devices, where a DECU digital forensics investigator found a video of Sharp urinating in a container of milkshake mix from Arby’s.