While an embarrassing number of Americans still swallow the drug war’s laughably fictitious marijuana prohibition propaganda, SWAT raids to confiscate the plant ludicrously deemed illegal by the State kill people at an exponentially higher rate than weed, itself.
Cannabis has never been the cause of a fatal overdose.
Data amassed by the New York Times “or the most part, governments at all levels have chosen not to quantify the toll by requiring reporting on SWAT operations. But The Times’s investigation, which relied on dozens of open-record requests and thousands of pages from police and court files, found that at least 81 civilians and 13 law enforcement officers died in such raids from 2010 through 2016. Scores of others were maimed or wounded.”
Euphemistically-termed “dynamic entry” raids allow militarily-clad police to smash through doors with assault weapons drawn, demand anyone present comply immediately, and, far too frequently, shoot first and claim imminent threat later.
Such reprehensible exertion of control through violent tactics seemingly lifted from gestapo manuals — particularly to enforce the much-maligned prohibition of cannabis — was never the intended use of police SWAT. As the Washington Post explains,
“The modern-day SWAT team originated in Los Angeles in the late 1960s as a way to deal with gunmen targeting police officers or civilians. But today SWAT teams are mostly used to handle routine warrant work, especially drug warrants. A 2014 ACLU study found that nearly 80 percent of SWAT deployments were to serve search warrants. Just 7 percent of SWAT deployments involved ‘hostage, barricade, or active shooter scenarios.’”
A patchwork of state laws now govern the legality of the plant falsely classified as lacking any medical value, as a Schedule 1 substance, by the FDA and Drug Enforcement Agency — whose own website hypocritically also states, “No death from overdose of marijuana has been reported” — making it possible to buy weed in a store in one state, and die because of it just over state lines.
Claire Bernish writes for The Free Thought Project.