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Mexico legal-drug bill condemned (OK Personal Use)
San Diego Union ^ | April 29, 2006 | Tony Manolatos, Anna Cearley and Pauline Repard

Posted on 04/29/2006 7:38:33 AM PDT by radar101

Drug limits List of maximum allowable drug quantities approved for personal use by Mexico's Congress:

Opium: (raw, to be smoked): 5 grams

Heroin: 25 milligrams

Marijuana: 5 grams

Cocaine: 500 milligrams

LSD: .015 milligrams

MDA: 200 milligrams

MDMA (Ecstasy): 200 milligrams

Mescaline: 1 gram

Peyote: 1 kilogram

Psilocybin (concentrate, pure, active ingredient): 100 milligrams

Hallucinogenic mushrooms (raw, off the farm): 250 milligrams

Amphetamines: 100 milligrams

Dexamphetamines: 40 milligrams

Phencyclidine (PCP, or Angel Dust): 7 milligrams

Methamphetamines: 200 milligrams

Nalbuphine (synthetic opiate): 10 milligrams Psilocybin (concentrate, pure, active ingredient): 100 milligrams

Hallucinogenic mushrooms (raw, off the farm): 250 milligrams

Amphetamines: 100 milligrams

Dexamphetamines: 40 milligrams

Phencyclidine (PCP, or Angel Dust): 7 milligrams

Methamphetamines: 200 milligrams

Nalbuphine (synthetic opiate): 10 milligrams

Mayor Jerry Sanders and other local officials were astounded to hear that Mexico is close to legalizing an array of drugs – from marijuana to heroin – for personal use.

“I view this as a hostile action by a longtime ally of the U.S.,” Sanders said at a City Hall news conference.

Mexico's Congress approved a bill yesterday that would allow possession of small quantities of marijuana, Ecstasy, cocaine and even heroin.

Mexican lawmakers say the change would actually strengthen drug enforcement efforts, but that's not the interpretation north of the border.

“Legalizing these drugs is certainly going to have a spillover effect in San Diego,” said Damon Mosler, head of narcotics at the San Diego County District Attorney's Office.

“It means they'll be importing people who want to do drugs, and exporting those who need the financial wherewithal to continue to do those drugs they've become addicted to,” he said.

While shock and outrage dominated local reaction to the proposed law, federal authorities noted they were still gathering information on the specific details of the bill. They said the legislation appears to “clarify” policies, rather than legalize drugs.

In Mexico, the situation wasn't any clearer.

Ruth Hernández, a congresswoman with the National Action Party, said the law's intent is actually to prosecute more people for drug possession.

“This is not a law that will tolerate the consumption of drugs, but the way it was expressed makes it appear like that, and that's why it's creating a lot of consternation,” Hernández said. “The law should be sufficiently clear so there is no doubt in its interpretation.”

She said she abstained from voting on the measure because of her concerns with how it's being interpreted.

President Vicente Fox is almost certain to sign it, said Oscar Aguilar, a Mexico City political analyst. Fox's office proposed it, and his party supports it.

“He's not going to abandon his party two months before the (presidential) election,” Aguilar said.

Locally, the region's top political and law enforcement officials gathered at the news conference late yesterday to attack the policy change.

“This is going to have a tremendously bad effect on San Diego and the people who visit here,” Police Chief William Lansdowne said.

Sanders said he plans to encourage Fox not to sign the bill.

The legislation is “appallingly stupid, reckless and dangerous,” said the mayor, who was flanked by Lansdowne, District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis, Chula Vista Police Chief Richard Emerson and others.

“One has to ask the question: Are the drug lords running the show?” Dumanis said. “More addicts will flood our streets and crime will go up.”

Officials are concerned about the proposed law's effect on young adults. With a drinking age of 18, teens already pack bars and nightclubs in places like Tijuana, Cancun, Acapulco. But many avoid drugs because they're worried about getting caught.

The Bush administration had no immediate reaction. Calls to the San Diego offices of the Drug Enforcement Administration and Immigration and Customs Enforcement were referred to the U.S. State Department.

“Preliminary information from Mexican legislative sources indicates that the intent of the draft legislation is to clarify the meaning of 'small amounts' of drugs for personal use as stated in current Mexican law,” Janelle Hironimus, a State Department press agent, told The San Diego Union-Tribune in a prepared statement.

“We are working with our colleagues in Mexico to get additional information on this proposed legislation,” she said.

The statement also noted that the United States and Mexico “have a strong history of counter-narcotics cooperation, and the Fox administration has taken a firm stance against illegal drug cultivation, trafficking and abuse.”

Currently, Mexican law leaves open the possibility of dropping charges against people caught with drugs if they are considered addicts and if “the amount is the quantity necessary for personal use.” But the exemption isn't automatic.

The new bill drops the “addict” requirement – automatically allowing any “consumers” to have drugs – and sets out specific allowable quantities.

Victor Clark, a Tijuana-based human rights activist who follows drug trends closely, said it appears the law would lead to more people being prosecuted for drug possession.

Clark said that under the previous law, many people were able to argue that they were addicts, and that meant they were back in the streets within hours.

Sale of all drugs would remain illegal under the proposed law. Still, the effects could be significant, given that Mexico is rapidly becoming a drug-consuming nation as well as a shipment point for traffickers.

The policy change is likely to surface when John Walters, director of the National Drug Control Policy in Washington, arrives in San Diego to meet with officials Wednesday.

A spokesman for Walters said the director's trip was planned prior to the development south of the border.

Mexican officials hope the law will help police focus on large-scale trafficking operations, rather than minor drug busts. The bill also stiffens penalties for trafficking and possession of drugs – even small quantities – by government employees or near schools, and maintains criminal penalties for drug sales.

The bill, passed by Mexico's Senate on a 53-26 vote with one abstention yesterday, had already been approved in the lower house. “This law gives police and prosecutors better legal tools to combat drug crimes that do so much damage to our youth and children,” presidential spokesman Rubén Aguilar said.

Under the measure, criminal charges would no longer be brought for possession of up to 25 milligrams of heroin, five grams of marijuana and a half-gram of cocaine.

“No charges will be brought against . . . addicts or consumers who are found in possession of any narcotic for personal use,” according to the bill, which also lays out allowable quantities for a large array of other drugs, including LSD, Ecstasy and amphetamines.

In California, it's illegal to possess cocaine, heroin, LSD, Ecstasy and amphetamines. Medical marijuana can be used in certain circumstances, but casual use is illegal. Possession of less than one ounce of pot can draw a citation and a fine.

“Simple possession is an effective investigative tool into other crimes, including trafficking,” said Mosler of the District Attorney's Office.

While the drug amounts the bill outlines appear to be small, they're enough to supply some users for several days, said Dr. James Dunford, medical director of the city of San Diego's paramedic service.

“It's a travesty from a public health perspective,” he said.

Sanders said Mexico's legislation couldn't come at a worse time, as the U.S. struggles with immigration issues.

“I think it's going to be necessary to have a much more secure border,” Sanders said.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Government; Mexico
KEYWORDS: drugs; icantsearch; illegal; narcodemocracy; wod; wodlist; wot

1 posted on 04/29/2006 7:38:39 AM PDT by radar101
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To: radar101

With the size of the loads coming across, these quantities amount to nothing but residue.


2 posted on 04/29/2006 7:45:02 AM PDT by SouthTexas
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To: radar101
Simple possession is an effective investigative tool into other crimes, including trafficking...

So is wire tapping, kicking in doors, torture, etc. but there are restrictions on those methods also.

3 posted on 04/29/2006 7:45:23 AM PDT by FreePaul
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To: radar101

Are they trying to attract more tourists to their cesspool of a country?


4 posted on 04/29/2006 7:46:19 AM PDT by Farmer Dean (Every time a toilet flushes,another liberal gets his brains.)
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To: radar101
I wonder if this is setting up something to trade with the US government to prevent increased border enforcement. Mexico will decide to not legalize if the US promises to give amnesty to our current batch of illegals and not harass any new amigos who want to cross the border.
5 posted on 04/29/2006 7:54:26 AM PDT by KarlInOhio (Congress, since you only understand Spanish here is my proposal: ¡Amnistía, no! ¡Deportación, sí!)
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To: radar101
Wastin' away again in potaritaville
Lookin' for my lost doobie of pot

Some people say there's a woman to blame
But I say no, cause pot's all I got

6 posted on 04/29/2006 7:58:17 AM PDT by Enterprise (The MSM - Propaganda wing and news censorship division of the Democrat Party.)
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To: radar101
"“I view this as a hostile action by a longtime ally of the U.S.,” Sanders said at a City Hall news conference.

Thank God, there are still people who are sane and see how wrong this is.Now let Congress know it is yet another hostile act by mexicans.

7 posted on 04/29/2006 7:59:08 AM PDT by stopem (To allow a bunch of third world country nationals to divide Americans is unconscionable!)
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To: radar101
CALIFORNIA LAW-IF the police decide to enforce it: 11550(a)Health&Safety Code.... No person shall use, or be under the influence of any controlled substance which is (most of the drugs listed)It shall be the burden of the defense to show that it comes within the exception. Any person convicted of violating this subdivision is guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be sentenced to serve a term of not less than 90 days or more than one year in a county jail.
8 posted on 04/29/2006 8:01:00 AM PDT by radar101 (The two hallmarks of Liberals: Fantasy and Hypocrisy)
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To: radar101

Just as Mexico exports its poor to the US, so possibly the US can export its drug addicts to Mexico. This may work out. ;o)


9 posted on 04/29/2006 8:07:42 AM PDT by Rockitz (This isn't rocket science- Follow the money and you'll find the truth.)
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To: radar101

So what's the difference between legal and illegal. Mexico has already demonstrated they do not know.


10 posted on 04/29/2006 8:07:46 AM PDT by freekitty
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To: radar101

Just further proof that Mexico is actively involved in promoting drug use and trafficing.


11 posted on 04/29/2006 8:07:50 AM PDT by TheBattman (Islam (and liberalism)- the cult of Satan and a Cancer on Society)
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To: radar101

"The county won't give me no more methadone,
and they cut off my welfare check.
Carmelita, hold me tighter . . . "
Linda "Why, Michael Moore is a Minuteman!" Ronstadt


12 posted on 04/29/2006 8:18:20 AM PDT by OkieDoke (Thar they blows! And it's a pair--Linda and Michael Left whales)
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To: Farmer Dean

Mexico attracts rich, spoiled Americans every day. IMPO this is a publicity ploy designed to attract gullible gringos to popular resorts where they can be lured into dangerous situations. Kidnappings are sure to increase. Watch out for resorts like Cancun to become world famous next year for high profile crime reports.


13 posted on 04/29/2006 8:32:18 AM PDT by ex-Texan (Matthew 7:1 through 6)
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To: radar101

I wouldn't get too excited about this. 200 milligrams of cocaine = 0.2 grams or about one line. 100 milligrams of speed is about the same dosage.

As any druggie can tell you, one line is never enough.


14 posted on 04/29/2006 8:32:38 AM PDT by wildbill
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To: TheBattman
Just further proof that Mexico is actively involved in promoting drug use

Is the U.S. "actively involved in promoting" alcohol use because that drug is legal?

15 posted on 04/29/2006 8:43:15 AM PDT by Know your rights (The modern enlightened liberal doesn't care what you believe as long as you don't really believe it.)
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To: stopem
Thank God, there are still people who are sane and see how wrong this is.

Why is it wrong? Is the legality of the drug alcohol wrong?

Now let Congress know it is yet another hostile act by mexicans.

Instead of sticking our noses in other nations' business, we should defend our borders so we aren't affected by their decisions.

16 posted on 04/29/2006 8:48:57 AM PDT by Know your rights (The modern enlightened liberal doesn't care what you believe as long as you don't really believe it.)
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To: TheBattman
Just further proof that Mexico is actively involved in promoting drug use and trafficking.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Maybe the Mexicans see the futility in trying to dictate what a citizen does with their own body.

Meanwhile - back here in the U.S. - All the fed.'s men and all the fed.'s horses and all the citizen's tax money can't stop anyone from smoking a joint.

17 posted on 04/29/2006 9:57:34 AM PDT by winston2 (In matters of necessity let there be unity, in matters of doubt liberty, and in all things charity:)
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To: radar101
This could cause reverse immigration!
18 posted on 04/29/2006 10:04:18 AM PDT by mtnwmn
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To: OkieDoke

Used to play that song years ago!I thought I was the only one who ever heard it!Used to.


19 posted on 04/29/2006 10:29:47 AM PDT by xarmydog
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To: All

As bad as this sounds to probably most of the readers: drugs are here to stay. People have been doing drugs, especially drugs like cannabis/marijuana, peyote, psylocybin mushrooms, etc., for thousands upon thousands of years. That doesn't make it right or healthy but to some extent it's just a fact of life. The drug war will never be won. We've been fighting this war since the 1930s if not before and drugs have only become more available and more potent. In some sense, prosecution for drugs like cannabis is just kind of silly because cannabis, it can be argued easily, is not physically addictive, does not pose a threat of overdose and to some extent isn't nearly as debilitating as alcohol.

Of course a comparison to alcohol doesn't make cannabis good or make alcohol bad but you can at least argue that our laws and culture are not being consistent.


20 posted on 04/29/2006 10:57:23 AM PDT by xachthegreat (Decriminalize Personal, Responsible Cannabis Use)
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To: All

This law could also be seen to really only affect the more serious drug users and sellers, especially sellers and manufactures because the amounts specified as being decriminalized are almost less than the casual drug consumer would have in his or her possession for even personal use. So, this law makes it so the Mexican justice system isn't spending hundreds of dollars on building a case on a guy who was found to have 2 or 3 joints on his person when he was caught smoking in a public place. This makes it so the law, at least it seems, puts priority on people who possess or sell large quanities of drugs.


21 posted on 04/29/2006 11:05:08 AM PDT by xachthegreat (Get the government out of our personal lives.)
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To: All

This law could also be seen to really only affect the more serious drug users and sellers, especially sellers and manufactures because the amounts specified as being decriminalized are almost less than the casual drug consumer would have in his or her possession for even personal use. So, this law makes it so the Mexican justice system isn't spending hundreds of dollars on building a case on a guy who was found to have 2 or 3 joints on his person when he was caught smoking in a public place. This makes it so the law, at least it seems, puts priority on people who possess or sell large quanities of drugs.


22 posted on 04/29/2006 11:05:31 AM PDT by xachthegreat (Get the government out of our personal lives.)
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To: Know your rights; winston2

I was wondering how long it would take for our friendly neighborhood pro-drug members to come out and join in.


23 posted on 04/29/2006 9:09:28 PM PDT by TheBattman (Islam (and liberalism)- the cult of Satan and a Cancer on Society)
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To: TheBattman
I was wondering how long it would take for our friendly neighborhood pro-drug members to come out and join in.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

"pro-drug" is such a narrow description of Know your rights and myself.

We are "pro" a lot more things. Pro-liberty, pro-individual rights or pro-Constitutional might be more capable descriptions of us.

A nation should not wage a war against it's own citizens because they choose to enjoy themselves in a way that some choose not to.

Last night - my wife and I were watching "Amazing Video's" and there was some nut trying to jump a motorcycle over 14 automobiles. Well, unfortunately for him, he was short of his descent ramp and crashed. IMHO - he was doing something that deserves a law against it much more than the joint I smoked. At least, at my home, no one was hurt.

24 posted on 04/30/2006 6:36:35 AM PDT by winston2 (In matters of necessity let there be unity, in matters of doubt liberty, and in all things charity:)
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To: TheBattman
Is the U.S. "actively involved in promoting" alcohol use because that drug is legal?

I was wondering how long it would take for our friendly neighborhood pro-drug members to come out and join in.

I'm anti-drug and pro-liberty. Are you going to answer the question or just sling mud?

25 posted on 04/30/2006 7:53:28 AM PDT by Know your rights (The modern enlightened liberal doesn't care what you believe as long as you don't really believe it.)
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