Murder and Marijuana in Northern Virginia

By DJ Rippert

Risky business, reccless behavior.  Federal prosecutors recently charged members of a Northern Virginia drug gang, the Reccless Tigers, with a variety of felonies.  A US News & World Report article claims multiple members of the gang have been charged with “murder in a sweeping new indictment that blames the northern Virginia street gang with two deaths, multiple fire bombings and a sophisticated bi-coastal drug operation that supplied marijuana-laced vape pens to kids throughout the region’s school systems.”  This is not the gang’s first brush with the law.  Nearly 20 members of the gang and associates of the gang already pleaded guilty to federal charges stemming from drug related activities.

New kids in town.  Government sources say that the Reccless Tigers were formed in 2011 in the Centreville area of Fairfax County.  The gang mounted a fairly sophisticated operation.  Drug dealers would be induced to go into debt to the Reccless Tigers for the purchase of marijuana to be sold in Northern Virgina.  When the dealers struggled to pay back the debt they would be forced to work at a marijuana farm in Hayfork, California which had ties to the gang.  In essence, the gang operated a vertically integrated farm-to-vape-pen business.  The farm was raided in July 2019.

The cost of cooperation.  As the USN&WR article states, “Brandon White was given a choice, prosecutors say: If he opted not to testify against a member of the Reccless Tigers street gang who had assaulted him, a gang member would pay him $8,000 for his injuries. But if he testified, he’d be killed. White testified. Less than three months later, he was dead, his body left in the Virginia woods.”

The profit of illegality.  It’s hard to imagine how the Reccless Tigers would have been able to fund their criminal enterprise if Virginia was one of the eleven states which have legalized the recreational sale and use of marijuana.  In Virginia, the penalty for possessing small amounts of marijuana was decriminalized effective July 1.  However, there are still severe criminal penalties for the manufacture, transport and distribution of marijuana.  Criminals willing to bear the risks of providing the marijuana are able to profit handsomely.  And, as with almost all criminal enterprises, turf, territory and violence accompany the crimes.  The cost of Virginia’s intransigence on legalizing marijuana is more than lost taxes and lost legitimate jobs.  It also includes lost lives.

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108 responses to “Murder and Marijuana in Northern Virginia

  1. but, but, couldn’t you make the same argument about heroin, cocaine, PCP, etc? Anything the govt “outlaws” invites criminal enterprise. no?

    • I suppose you could make those arguments but marijuana is a plant that has been legalized for personal use by adults in 11 states and legalized for medical use in dozens of other states. In my mind it’s inevitable that Virginia will legalize adult use of marijuana. Even Republicans in the General Assembly have said they think it’s inevitable. Yet while our legislature ponders their belly-buttons while working from home and collecting out of town per diem payments people are dying. And … taxes are not being collected, jobs in distressed rural communities are not being worked, African-American small business men and women are not receiving dispensary licenses, etc.

  2. Right…..with the legalization of your beloved pot, DJ, all of these fine, upstanding young people would happily become store clerks working in the grass and pot brownie emporium for $10 an hour. None of them would find some other illegal activity to enrich themselves…..

    God Damn the Pusher Man.

    • Clearly, Centreville is almost as much of a dump as Manassas is. Guess the rot spreads along 28 till it hits I-66.

      If pot were legal, these fine upstanding citizens would probably be pushing heroin instead.

      • Less crime = fewer criminals. How many criminals are bootlegging liquor today vs during prohibition?

        Legalization of recreational marijuana is as inevitable as the intransigence and incompetence of Virginia’s General Assembly.

        When Northam, Filler-Corn and Saslaw come looking for money to fund their next socialist scheme I’d rather take the money out of the pockets of the Reccless Tigers than out of my pocket.

        • None. Those with criminal tendencies will find another way to break the law and line their pockets. For example, some may run for office and become a Virginia politician.

          • Idiocracy:

            Please stop! Your lucky I don’t delete your comment. There are some things even a Reccless Tiger wouldn’t stoop to.

        • Uh, I was going to point out that gang members probably don’t fill out a 760, but then since Capone, maybe they do.

    • Supply and demand hold for criminal activities as well as for packages of bacon or any other product. Take away the demand for illegal marijuana by legalizing it and you won’t need the supply of criminals presently providing the illegal hootch. Less crime = fewer criminals.

      And if you really want to damn the pusher man you might write up a protest sign and stand in front of the closest ABC Store to Capitol Square hoping to catch a few state senators slinking in to pick up a bottle of Mellow Corn. Not only does selling liquor in Virginia constitute state owned drug dealing it was deemed essential by your beloved governor.

    • I don’t know how legalization will play out but we will probably find out in time. Is this what the future looks like?

      “Henrico man sentenced to 12 months for marijuana-impaired driving in crash that killed boy, 5”

      https://richmond.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/henrico-man-sentenced-to-12-months-for-marijuana-impaired-driving-in-crash-that-killed-boy/article_b6a4057c-6119-50c8-8950-3dc1b87b2007.html#tracking-source=home-top-story-1

      Then there’s this.

      “Marijuana Damages Young Brains
      States that legalize it should set a minimum age of 25 or older.”

      https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/16/opinion/marijuana-brain-effects.html?login=email&auth=login-email

      • all true. Impaired drivers kill others including kids.

        so do idiot cell phone users…

        yep – and video games damage young brains also..

        all TRUE – but in the process of “protecting” them – we create criminal enterprises and gangs also.

        and we end up with more people in prison than any other country on the planet including repressive regimes (as a percent of population).

        We tried this with alcohol and it did exactly what drugs are doing today.

        Chicago was back then – and now is full of gangs killing each other and innocents over the right to sell drugs.

        it just does not work and it actually creates far more harm to many more people.

        Innocent people whose neighborhoods are taken over by gangs and drug dealers… even if you arrest them – the demand for the drugs will continue – until we deal with the demand – all we are doing is trading new gang members for imprisoned and dead ones…

  3. Steve,

    Boy, are you dating yourself. Did you really live in the 60’s when Steppenwolf was the thing? 😉

  4. The drug thing has always been interesting to me. And it goes to the heart of the individual “rights” thing.

    Should you be able to use drugs if you want to?

    A lot of the killing and gang stuff in urban areas it the modern version of the Mafia and Alcohol way back when.

    How much killing would we have if someone could get their favorite drug for the price of a pack of cigarettes or pint of gin?

    Then we could tax it like anything else.

  5. Legalize and move on. It’s your body, if you choose to partake be prepared for the consequences. It’s legal to drink alcohol and smoke cigarettes and they are just as much of intoxicants and “drugs” as the rest.

    The only thing that is holding legalization back is Uncle Sugar wants his cut, until a way to take that cut is determined, it will be illegal.

    • What are the consequences? Remember when the goverment told us that pot caused gynecomastia? Then, just to make sure there were consequences, they dosed it with Paraquat.

      • and then they said we had to get vaccinated also and who knows what was in that… 😉

      • Gyno (gyecomastia) is caused by hormone imbalance. It’s swelling of existing breast tissue in males. If you have it the only way to remove it is surgery, there are zero protocols using chemicals that will reverse it, if it’s set in.

        PS. Arnold smoked lots of weed in the 70’s when he was Mr. Olympia, he didn’t have gyno.

        • I know that, you know that, but the whole notion of the government putting out false warnings about drugs in the hope of changing behavior is not unheard of.

          Remember they also said LSD caused birth defects.

          But, before we go too crazy, COV2 is excluded from the false stuff.

          • Well if you wanted to discuss “science” smoking excessive amounts of weed can cause increased estrogen in some cases, it can also make people lazy. Which results in lots of couch sitting and binge eating, in which man-boobs develop as a result of.

            PS what you just described is social engineering,a literal plethora of our laws are written to do just that. They are wrong, and people get messed up with Police are required to enforce said laws.

            That isn’t the Government, it’s politicians who are in the pockets of every single big pharma company out there, regardless of political party.

            Well if you’re going to abuse drugs during pregnancy the odds your child will be in the NICU will be around 90% if not higher.

            There are lots of risk factors associated with drug use and it’s interaction with your body chemistry and so forth. That is your personal decision, not the Governments.

            “But, before we go too crazy, COV2 is excluded from the false stuff.”

            Why exclude the coronavirus? I’m certain false information has been put out regarding that as well.

          • All laws are “social engineering”, are they not? But, there are negative and positive inducements. Invest and you could pay 0% tax on qualifying dividends and long term gains. Kill your broker… well.

            But the “War on Drugs”, well that was a campaign, and we all know what campaigns are about. Gave it a quick Google, but there is a judge in California who decided the WoD was a waste when he discovered that Manson ran a drug ring from solitary confinement.

            But here’s food for thought. In the mid-60s, there was only one company producing LSD, and they had only one customer who bought it. Run down that rabbit hole. Find the customer.

            A little help.. it also used postitutes.

          • All Laws are not social engineering.

            The War on Drugs was and is pointless.

            Big Pharma controls all politicians regardless of the side of the aisle they reside.

            LSD was used by the MK Ultra program, I’m very well aware of that.

            If you want to trip, go for it. I don’t personally care as long as you do so responsibly.

          • “All Laws are not social engineering.”
            Cite an example. Other than Ohm’s. Laws are about two, or more, people living, meh, let’s say, harmoniously.

            BTW, laziness and pot. No real proven causality.

          • Do you even know what “social engineering” is? Obviously you don’t and and I’m I supposed to be impressed you know what “ohm’s law” is?

            Is there a point to where you stop arguing for the sake of arguing and realize you don’t know everything?

            https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-athletes-way/201307/does-long-term-cannabis-use-stifle-motivation

            It’s proven in specific instances, would you care to be wrong again?

          • N_N

            There are Newton’s Laws – But since they relate to mass, force and movement, and they more or less require people to [eventually] keep their feet on the ground, I suppose they COULD be considered social engineering…

          • Matt –

            RE: The psychology today article – How do they know it’s not the other way around? Maybe laziness leads to marijuana use…

            🙂

          • I noticed that you did not give an example of a non social engineering law. But that’s okay.

            But I get some of your point, I don’t know YOUR definition of social engineering.

            Wayne, that is the issue. You have to know what causes laziness, if anything at all ’causes’ it, before you can determine if pot causes it.

          • Wayne,

            The “original’ Indiana Jones movie, certainly an influential one, starred Charlton Heston as an antiquity hunter in Peru seeking some treasure.

            His somewhat larcenous sidekick, bad guy in the end, had a repeated line, “Gravity gets you in the end.” It did him.

          • My definition would be the only definition of a Social Engineering.

            “the use of centralized planning in an attempt to manage social change and regulate the future development and behavior of a society.”

            How about I give you an example of a social engineering law and you apply the principles to actual law.

            Obesity is a rising concern in the United States. IOT to curb that the Mayor of NYC imposed a law that would cap the size of containers for sugary beverages.

            Obviously someone didn’t read the citation or the King’s College study regarding dopamine production.

            As I said before, if you want to get high go for it not my business. However, known the consequences of your actions and act accordingly.

          • Oops, maybe yes, maybe no.

            https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5123717/

            It’s complicated Buddy, so form your opinion, and chalk up your frustrations to arguing with an idiot. I know I have.

          • Oh looky a personal attack from someone who whines about personal attacks. If you weren’t a hypocrite you wouldn’t be anything at all.

            Also from the summary of your very own article, either you didn’t understand or read (which echoed the same results at the King’s College study btw).

            “Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis, is a pressing concern to global mental health. Patterns of use are changing drastically due to legalisation, availability of synthetic analogues (‘spice’), cannavaping and aggrandizements in the purported therapeutic effects of cannabis. Many of THC’s reinforcing effects are mediated by the dopamine system. Due to complex cannabinoid-dopamine interactions there is conflicting evidence from human and animal research fields. Acute THC causes increased dopamine release and neuron activity, whilst long-term use is associated with blunting of the dopamine system. Future research must examine the long-term and developmental dopaminergic effects of the drug.”

            https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5123717/

            I would hope you know what they mean by acute in that statement.

            I reality, I think it’s rather evident the “idiot” to which you refer must be yourself, for citing documentation that you seem to lack the ability to understand.

          • Madam,

            Could you provide the title of this much vaunted study conducted at King’s College? The link in your reference is broken.

            TIA.

            And yes, I was suggesting that you just think me an idiot. How else could anyone take that statement? Only a moron could read it, and think that it referred to the reader and not the writer..

          • The reference isn’t broken, their website is having issues. However, the study was conducted by one of the contributing authors (Professor Oliver Howes) to your citation (things you’d know if you had read, it was rather obvious you didn’t or could from the get go).

            http://www.sci-news.com/medicine/marijuana-brains-reward-system-04402.html

            https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24696078/

            That seems to be a pattern with you, you don’t understand what’s printed.

            Ironically you find humor is questioning others intelligence, surely you’re a prime candidate for DK.

            I won’t even begin to address your issues with personal insults (merely compensating, most likely).

        • Wayne their data was draw from a study conducted by King’s College. Dopamine is a key component for healthy brain function, it appears via this study that it’s production is decreased which can cause less motivation.

          • I was pretty much joking, but in all seriousness, did they measure each person’s dopamine production before he/she began regular marijuana use? If not, how did they know a given person’s dopamine production was reduced?

        • Wayne NN so kindly provided a study (which is ironic as he somehow believed it proved his conclusion, it didn’t).

          I believe they measured Dopamine production prior too and after use. They also studied it in an acute vs long term aspect. According to their summary, acute use has no ill effect on dopamine production, while long-term use blunts the dopamine system.

          https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5123717/

          • So once a week might be okay?

            I’m asking for a friend…

            🙂

          • Hey man, if that’s your bag go for it. I suppose according to their study is could be, I’m also sure there are some drugs on the market to combat dopamine decreased production. Certainly Parkinson’s drugs would be in that world, as it messes with the dopamine system.

            As an aside, it didn’t do anything for me so I don’t partake. That doesn’t mean I don’t support your right to though.

    • I’m with you. It’s legal in 11 states including America’s most populous and at least one state that voted for Trump in 2016.

      Uncle Sugar can get his taxes as easily as he wants. Like alcohol …
      https://www.cbo.gov/budget-options/2018/54815

  6. Well, it’s good to see that Virginia has formed a business venture with California.

  7. If you took drugs away as a reason for police stops, what would happen?

    • They might start enforcing the turn signal laws instead?

      • only for people of color?

        • Good luck proving that, Larry.

          • just stop doing stuff like that – “stop and frisk” whether on foot or a car is problematical where the policeman has the discretion over he/she will stop and the goal is to bootstrap a search based on little more than a hunch.

            Every time you do that and it ends up empty – you’ve intimidated another person and he/she talks to others.

            Some might call that good policing – I call it bad community relations – you make the police the enemy for everyone.

            If you or I got stopped for a tailight and saw that the officer was trying to do a search – we’d likely be outraged.

            It violates the whole concept of reasonable cause…

  8. Awful lot of newly consecrated libertarians on this site!

  9. If you took alcohol away as a reason for police stops, what would happen?

  10. Let’s make this clear. Stops for obvious behavior verses stops to find out what you have on board but no reason to stop to start with.

    Stops because of how you are driving versus stops to search.

    better?

    • All stops are for obvious behavior or equipment violations.

      That the cop is only making the stop (for behavior or equipment violation that would otherwise be ignored) because he expects to find a pound of crack in the glove compartment is a different matter.

  11. This post gave rise to a great story….

    We were sitting on the beach. My friend had just subscribed to Bacon’s Rebellion last night. His cell phone beeped. And this post had just dropped into his inbox. He took a look and said, it’s about some gang in Northern Virginia and the Marijuana trade.

    I said, I just read an article in the Washington Post about an Asian gang. They brought some guy down to Richmond where they killed him and dumped his body in the woods.

    Turns out the body was dumped in the side lot belonging to my friend! He proceeded to tell how the FBI, Richmond Police, an DEA had knocked on his door and said they had reason to believe that a body had been dumped on their property, and would it be OK for them to search. My friends said, of course. Long story short, the police found the body — but they never told our friends what was going on.

    The first time my friends found out the rest of the story was reading Bacon’s Rebellion!

    • Sounds like your friend and Levar Stoney have both learned that Bacon’s Rebellion can connect the dots. Sometimes on purpose, sometimes by accident.

    • See, even the organized crime in Virginia stinks. They can’t even figure out how to get rid of a body, the point of which is to make sure that the cops NEVER find it (like, for example, one Jimmy Hoffa).

      Sheesh.

    • Well, in a game of one upmanship, about 18 years ago two guys descided to conduct a drug sale and pulled into my neighborhood. They pulled up in front of my house. Long story short, one guy walked away with the drugs and the money.

      Nothing like being awakened at 5AM by a cop who askes, “Do you know who owns the car in front of your house?” Ten minutes later, they had tented the car, blocked off the street, crime tape everywhere. Some three days later, the guy turned himself in and confessed.

  12. Interesting. Never heard about this gang in my backyard, but we have no local paper these days, and the cops (in my view anyways) do not usually explain stories about dead bodies showing up in a yard. One initially hears the about the dead body on TV/radio news, and then that’s the end of it. We do not get the speculation or follow-up. We used to have a nasty Fx website where we could get the inside scoop, but the site seems to have lost it’s news value. Needless to say the authorities hated it and worked hard to squelch it, and it was raunchy and racist.

  13. James Wyatt Whitehead V

    The black market is always going to be cheaper than the Virginia ABC pot store. Don’t forget the culture of the drug trade imbedded into pop culture: glorified to all ends. In Loudoun County Public Schools pot users and dealers that get caught:
    1. Get a talking to from the principal with parents present. (If they have one)
    2. 30 minute required video on the dangers of pot.
    3. Go to the Loudoun Sheriff’s kiosk in Sterling and pay a $35 fine.

    Matter concluded.

    Twenty years ago it was automatic expulsion.

    So much for Washington’s quote: Religion and Morality are the pillars of society.

  14. We have a very misguided drug policy that results in us having the largest prison population (as a percent of population) – in the world, including repressive authoritarian regimes.

    We have a baby in the bath water approach where we say we have to go after the drug users and low level sellers – but in the process we incentivize larger criminal enterprises and gangs.

    It’s little different than the dynamics during prohibition that grew the Mafia into a significant criminal enterprise.

    Many of the murders and violent crimes in urban areas is directly attributable to fights among drug dealers who would not exist if drugs were legal like alcohol and cigarettes and many prescription drugs that wealthier folks can buy.

    The “war on drugs” is as dumb as a stump.

    We waste tremendous resources AND we incentivize bad cops using drugs to stop and search people whose major crime is possession which we call “distribution” as a way to imprison them. In the meantime, the folks who supplied them are more or less immune from prosecution.

    • Got it, so the War on Drugs is bad. This I agree, it was a waste of money and has been furthered pressed by Senators who have big pharma in their pockets.

      However, I do have a question Larry.

      If your stance is that it was dumb, why is one party running a candidate who championed the 1993 Crime Bill, and their VP put countless individuals (many of color) away for a very long time as a DA for weed.

      • because folks on both sides are wrongheaded about it , have been in the past, and some now are evolving in their views.

        using it as a partisan weapon is also dumb, IMHO.

        • FVP Biden didn’t push for legalization when he was VP just 4 years ago, heck he still doesn’t support legalization (so much for that evolving). Sen. Harris didn’t provide any bills towards it until 2019 and that was merely marijuana. That’s note evolution, that’s pandering for votes. Yes, both parties do it. Hence why I find both parties repugnant and don’t have to twist myself into a pretzel defending them (i.e. you and your comment).

          “using it as a partisan weapon is also dumb, IMHO.”

          PS: using someone’s stance on a subject isn’t making it a partisan weapon, it’s called holding them to their word. We have 40 years of FVP Biden’s words, legislation and actions to judge the man on.

          Despite what you believe Biden is no better than Trump, and neither should be POTUS.

          • The issue with drugs is a wider scope one that individuals of either party.

            I do not look at one issue with any of them as a sole litmus test.

            Times changes and people do and that includes their elected representatives… if they want to stay elected.

            It just takes time for things to play out… enough people have to change their views and get on board before we can go forward.

            We DO need to do everything we can to encourage responsible behaviors especially among the young and young people need to have hope for their future… the one’s that don’t , don’t care and go down.

          • Marijuana will remain a state-by-state issue for the foreseeable future unless one of the two parties decides that voicing support for legalization will help their chances this Fall. If not, possession will remain illegal but unenforced at the Federal level and will continue to expand as states continue to legalize.

            This Fall … Four states are voting on adult-use (recreational) cannabis legalization: Arizona, Montana, New Jersey, and South Dakota. Three to four states are voting on medical marijuana legalization: Idaho (perhaps), Mississippi, Nebraska, and South Dakota.

            While I doubt they will all pass I think most will pass. Let’s say, for the sake of argument, all pass. That would bring the count of states where recreational use is legal to 15 and the count of states where medical marijuana is legal to 41 / 42 (depending on whether the matter makes it to the ballot in Idaho).

            Our supposedly open-minded and progressive Democratic majority in Richmond could leave the state behind almost everywhere on the medical marijuana question and behind conservative bastions like Arizona and Mississippi on the recreational use issue.

            Of course, The Virginia Way and the Byrd Machine’s ghost living in the state constitution proscribe citizen initiated referenda. After all, the fat cat pocket stuffers in the Imperial Clown Show in Richmond can’t allow the “little people” to start making decisions for themselves. That could jeopardize all kinds of unlimited campaign contributions, crony statue removal scams, effectively undocumented dinner meetings with special interests and other perks enjoyed by the most corrupt legislature in America.

          • The War on Drugs started in 1971 with Nixon and has continued and expanded with each passing administration. Even the venerable FPOTUS Obama was in on the War on Drugs despite what the public believes. That admin merely just didn’t use the term “War on Drugs” as it thought it was counterproductive. Instead they labeled addiction a disease and argued that legalized drugs would further degrade society.

            I would tend to think the 60’s along with the currently polling of acceptance for legalization that spans all parties, Rep, Dem and Ind’s have reached the threshold.

            https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/11/14/americans-support-marijuana-legalization/

            Personal responsibility has been and always will be on the individual. If someone is of age they are free to make their own decisions, if the outcomes are less than good, that is on them not society to remedy it.

            To recap, we’ve reached a point in time where 2/3rds of the people support legalization of Mary Jane alone. The dragging of feet is occurring at the Federal Level, as all those politicians are getting kick backs from big pharma and you seem okay with defending them on their position.

            https://www.opensecrets.org/industries/indus.php?ind=h04

            DJ pointed out exactly what I said, it’s not about changing opinions, it’s about stopping campaign and personal contributions to the politicians.

      • “If your stance is that it was dumb, why is one party running a candidate who championed the 1993 Crime Bill,…”

        “Senators represent their states not their own ambitions, well that’s how it’s supposed to be (I know strange). If the citizens of their states support legalization, that better be their opinion. ”

        Asked and answered. As the Senator from Delaware, Senator Biden was representing the position of the State of Delaware. At the time, 1993, Delaware had just 4 years before enacted some of the strictest drug penalties in the country July 1989 SB 142.

        • SB 142 decreased the mandatory minimum sentences as the amount of an illicit drug required to charge with trafficking.

          SB 142 also had nothing to do with Weed (whoops).

          SB 142 also didn’t reduce drug trafficking in Delaware.

          It didn’t do anything you purported it did, and again merely because a Politician passed a Law doesn’t mean it was at the urging or request of their constituents.

          https://www.cnn.com/videos/politics/2019/03/05/joe-biden-tough-on-crime-speech.cnn

          Care to comment or will you just deflect?

          • Read it again, Matt; this time for effect.

            It reduced the amount of illicit drugs with which charges of trafficking could be levied. Prior to it, a person with 14 grams of cocaine would be charged with possession. After it, a person with 5 grams or more would be charged with possession with intent to distribute.

            It also reduced the amounts for two other tiers of drugs including pot for which trafficking charges could be leveled.

            To be fair, you are correct, it did also reduced the mandatory time associated with trafficking charges.

            So, less drugs got you time, albeit less time. The result was more people imprisoned for fewer years.

          • Read what again the citation you didn’t provide?

            Oh and it’s rather apparent you didn’t read it as the limits went from 15 to 5.

            You say:
            “It reduced the amount of illicit drugs with which charges of trafficking could be levied. Prior to it, a person with 14 grams of cocaine would be charged with possession. After it, a person with 5 grams or more would be charged with possession with intent to distribute.”

            I said:
            “SB 142 decreased the mandatory minimum sentences as the amount of an illicit drug required to charge with trafficking.”

            Humm it appears you have a hard time reading?

            It did zip for trafficking as per the ncjrs and BJS provided.

            https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/Digitization/129498NCJRS.pdf
            https://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/msd8191.pdf

  15. interesting info:

  16. and here:

    • So you’ve invalidated your previous conclusion and defended mine. We are at a point where drug legalization is in the majority, yet the Fed isn’t having it. You can de-criminalize it all you want at the State level, it’s still a Federal Crime and Mr. DEA man is gonna come a callin.

      • Takes a long time… at the Fed level. not only for this…. but make no mistake – Congress – if it has the votes can change law….but there are still a lot of people out there that are opposed………..

        convert the above to Senate votes… many rural states will still oppose…

        • The very poll you just cited doesn’t validate your statement, it proves contrary.

          Again, Big Pharma controls politicians of both parties.

          https://www.opensecrets.org/industries/indus.php?ind=h04

          Rural states will not oppose, you’ve offered zero evidence for your opinion, because that’s all your offering is an opinion of someone who can’t seem to read their own graphs.

          PS I know what the article states with the graph you sourced, it doesn’t state your conclusion.

          https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/11/14/americans-support-marijuana-legalization/

          • The PEW poll that I provided is the same one you provided and they show 2/3 support for Pot but what I was saying (speculating without providing proof) is that 2/3 support in a poll does not mean 2/3 support in the Senate because some states do not have large majorities of support – much like the popular vote was for Clinton but the states aligned for Trump.

            In other words, I don’t think we have the votes in Congress to legalize at the Federal level – yet.

            yes, opinion… but based on analysis like this:

            ” 14 States That May Never Legalize Marijuana”

            “What this essentially means is that unless congressional lawmakers within these 14 states introduce medical and/or recreational cannabis legislation, there’s little chance of legalizing marijuana in these states. Remember, half of these states have some degree of Republican bias, and the remainder are competitive, meaning getting a marijuana bill passed in the legislature could prove to be incredibly difficult. If residents in these states gather strong enough support for medical and/or recreational cannabis legalization lawmakers, it’s possible lawmakers could have little choice but to pass legislation to keep their constituents happy — but this is no guarantee.”

            https://www.fool.com/investing/2016/10/08/14-states-that-may-never-legalize-marijuana.aspx

          • Larry,

            That article is 4 years old. A LOT has changed in the country, and especially in Virginia, in the last four years.

            For instance, the article notes that Virginia does not have a medical marijuana law. That is no longer the case.

          • yeah, I noticed that also but in terms of Congressional support – I think it’s probably still accurate.

            States with Conservative majorities and conservative Senators likely still oppose.

            In Virginia – yes – we finally got Medical but there was stiff opposition even then and the next step would be dead in the water if the GOP were still in the majority.

            Older people, tend to still be opposed in general.

            right?

            here you go:

            ” 17 States Where Marijuana Remains Illegal”

            Nov 9, 2019 at 10:51AM

            A third of the U.S. has yet to legalize cannabis
            Yet, here’s something you might find interesting: The path to legalization in the U.S. remains elusive, despite the fact that two-thirds of Americans favor legalization. Cannabis has been and will continue to be a Schedule I drug at the federal level for the foreseeable future. This means it’s entirely illegal, prone to abuse, and doesn’t have any recognized medical benefits.

            However, this hasn’t stopped individual states from giving marijuana the green light. Since 1996, when California became the first state to OK medical marijuana, we’ve seen a grand total of 33 states greenlight the use of medical cannabis. Of these 33 states, a third (11) also allow for adult-use consumption and/or retail sales.

            But that leaves quite a few states — 17 to be exact — on the other side of the aisle. In alphabetical order, here are the 17 states where the green rush currently remains off-limits.

            https://www.fool.com/investing/2019/11/09/17-states-where-marijuana-remains-illegal.aspx

          • Yup. What’s the old saying? Never trust anyone over 35?

          • Larry,

            The 11/14/2019 article lists Virginia as not allowing medical use, which means it was incorrect when it was published.

  17. Based on the graph following the one Larry posted from the Pew Research report (“Majorities across generations…”) , there is a much larger AGE gap in opinions about marijuana legalization than there is a “partisan” gap.

    Given that the average age of U.S. senators is almost 67 years, that might help explain why it has not been legalized yet.

  18. re: social engineering.

    Much of the IRS Tax code is de-facto social engineering, no?

    • The Magna Carta was social engineering. The Constitution is too, albeit less so, since as overarching as Americans tend to think the Constition is, it adopted as our “laws” British Common Law.

  19. Larry, Larry, Larry.

    Senators represent their states not their own ambitions, well that’s how it’s supposed to be (I know strange). If the citizens of their states support legalization, that better be their opinion. Otherwise they aren’t representing their State very well.

    Again, their pockets are being lined by big pharma. That is the governing factor at the Federal Level.

    “much like the popular vote was for Clinton but the states aligned for Trump.”

    Pointless statement, try again.

    So you said it’s not a partisan issue and try to make it a partisan issue?

    Oh and your article was plain wrong, but I don’t often go to the Motley Fool for anything but finical outlooks.

    https://disa.com/map-of-marijuana-legality-by-state

  20. We live in a Representative Democracy not a direct Democracy. The framers were skeptical of populism, and put protections in place to prevent mob rule.

    I too am frustrated at times, but the Senate was designed to be more deliberative and prevent a hasty move that would later be regretted.

    Some trivia: Originally, they were also chosen by the state legislatures, not directly elected. That changed April 8, 1913 with the ratification of the 17th Amendment.

    • Yep. Are you equating that to what is called “The Virginia Way” where the elected know what is best for Virginians instead of letting them vote on issues – like we see in some states that do allow citizens to initiate referenda, recalls, and legislation?

      are the states that allow this allowing “mob rule” ?

    • “Some trivia: Originally, they were also chosen by the state legislatures, not directly elected. That changed April 8, 1913 with the ratification of the 17th Amendment.”

      Of this I’m aware and since it’s passing and Congress becoming full time employment it’s been more about money, power and staying in power than it has Legislation.

      Using the original frame work of election via the State legislatures Senators would’ve represented the interests of the states not themselves and their campaign coffers and bank accounts.

  21. Saw something about Pot a few weeks ago (60 Minutes?) that the illegal growing is going great guns in Cali. Cali’s Gov had said legalizing pot would make countless billion$ for the state, but emphasis on “countless”. they are not making any money due to illegal traffic. Maybe 10 or 20 years the legal growing will displace the cheap illegal stuff. Cops are still spending a lot of time chasing down the illegal growing, which they take a helicopter ride, illegal farms are all over the place in the woods and mountains. The citizens juries feel illegal growing pot is good business and they will not convict unless the farms are stealing water and using chemicals, otherwise have at it. But do not illegally tap my water sources.

  22. re: illegal pot

    anyone know how tobacco is done in Virginia?

    Can anyone grow any amount anywhere?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tobacco_quota

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