Saying Yes in Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz, California, on April 23 became the first
municipality to file a lawsuit against federal drug warriors
enforcing the U.S. ban on medical marijuana. The lawsuit stems from
the September 2002 raid on the Wo/Men?s Alliance for Medical
Marijuana (WAMM), in which DEA agents arrested two WAMM founders
and confiscated 167 marijuana plants. ?The heart of the matter is
the fundamental constitutional right of every citizen to control
the circumstances of his or her own death,? plaintiff’s attorney
Gerald Uelmen told CounterPunch (April 28, 2003).
?That right is so fundamental that the federal government cannot
interfere with that right unless they show a compelling interest,
and that is the challenge that we are posing to federal authorities
in this case.? City officials have demonstrated their support since
the raid by allowing WAMM members to collect their weekly allotment
of medical marijuana on the steps of City Hall, and in nearby San
Jose, Police Chief William Landsdowne has removed his officers from
the DEA joint task force that made the WAMM arrests because the
federal law is not in accordance with California?s Compassionate
Use Act.

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