Pot Wars Episode IV: A New Hope

FedGov is pretending to give the idea of self-ownership another shot, the AP is reporting. This time, it appears, the dying, rather than the sick are the intended recipients of a small shot of liberty.

This round, like those before it, matches one person (and her attorney husband) against the state leviathan and its endless cash. Although a long shot in this political climate that has Bush’s hands tightly around Liberty’s neck, there is the possibility of an upset here. If the case somehow goes back to the Supreme Court and is argued well, the “justices” (assuming their hypocrisy has an end) may have a difficult time opining against the right to life when they just ruled in favor of the right to death.

Of course, the Administration has made a compelling case against medical freedom by stating that, well, marijuana is bad and that the government doesn’t like it, or some such stirring oration. More on the well-reasoned opposition from the ass’s mouth:

“There is no fundamental right to distribute, cultivate or possess marijuana,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Quinlivan, the government’s lead medical marijuana attorney, wrote to the appeals court.

From an ethical medical standpoint, the government sounds foolish beyond description. While no one enjoys a right to be healthy, the pursuit of health, like that of happiness is a fundamental right.

If this reality were somewhat more normal and felt a bit less like an altered, down-is-up, parallel one, it might shock the sensibilities that someone like Mark Quinlivan could rise to the level of Assistant US Attorney and not hold the slightest understanding of the Constitution. His position, no more than a parroting of what the Administration’s puppet masters dictate, is without authority on at least three constitutional levels.

Firstly, the 9th Amendment clearly states that rights listed in the Constitution are not exhaustive, stating, in clear language, “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.” Mr. Quinlivan assumes the Constitution is dead wrong on this point. He seems to subscribe to the tyrannical belief that many were concerned about with respect to a bill of rights. James Madison wrote on this point, illustrating the concern.

“It has been objected also against a bill of rights, that, by enumerating particular exceptions to the grant of power, it would disparage those rights which were not placed in that enumeration; and it might follow by implication, that those rights which were not singled out, were intended to be assigned into the hands of the General Government, and were consequently insecure. This is one of the most plausible arguments I have ever heard against the admission of a bill of rights into this system; but, I conceive, that it may be guarded against. I have attempted it, as gentlemen may see by turning to the last clause of the fourth resolution.”

While well-intending, the verbal guard against statism became, in time, less than a paper tiger.

The 10th Amendment makes it very clear for anyone with third grade reading comprehension skills that the federal government’s power is limited to what the Constitution grants it, and that any power not so delegated, is reserved to the states.

Then there is the “penumbra” of a privacy right (violations of which are not actual if perpetrated by the government) located within the Bill of Rights by court opinion in Griswold vs. Connecticut. In that case the government saw fit to rule in favor of defendants who were trafficking drugs that were illegal under state law. Up to this point, the government has been blazing newer and wider trails of sanctimony by ruling against defendants who are trafficking drugs that are legal under state law.

None of this matters to Messrs. Bush and Quinlivan, who usurp rights for usurpation’s sake. But precedent and constitutionality aside, the entire situation can be distilled down to simple matter of personal choice. If I own my body, as I do my mind, it would reasonably follow that I have as much a right to ingest a tray of black Afghani Hash brownies as I do to chain smoke filter-less Pall Malls as I shoot a fifth of Everclear with a bacon grease chaser. I can not legally do the former, but the latter act, the more ill-advised, I can perform without fear or threat whenever I wish. I am so blessed to have a government that protects me from myself.

That I can harm myself with some substances but not others, or that I can’t choose my own medication while the FDA approves dangerous drugs with horrifying side effects on a daily basis magnifies the absurdity of Washington’s position. If I truly feel that my physical, mental and spiritual heath is best maintained by copulating with racially-mixed circus midgets in a bathtub full of no. 3 heroin, I can’t imagine that being anyone else’s business, so long as the little people were there by choice. Likewise, if I choose to forgo conventional poison therapy to treat cancer, and favor the odds of laetrile and ozonation, that too, is solely my concern. But doctors who operate outside of the mainstream and offer their patients the treatment of their choice, are usually jailed and have their medical licenses revoked. Thus much for the penumbras of the Constitution.

And let us not forget that terminal patients often get all the opiates they want. The dying are sent home with bags of potent and addictive Morphine, but a few tokes of pot could lead to ruin. No one seriously believes that government is a bit concerned that someone with stage IVb pancreatic cancer might be victimized by marijuana’s “gateway drug” charms and start snorting lines of coke in the stall at the local nightclub.

Although I am excited about any foot in the door and hope those worried about a slippery drug slope are right, this upcoming case isn’t really about medical marijuana or even the prohibition of recreational drugs. It is about self-ownership and choice. If we own our bodies, we can put anything we wish into them. If we don’t, then someone else does, which makes us slaves. There is really no third option.

posted by artusregister
  • Michael Hampton

    Government attorneys are supposed to argue in favor of the government, right or wrong. That’s their job.

    I would bet this Quinlivan perfectly well understands that Americans DO have the fundamental right to possess, cultivate and distribute marijuana, and finds himself having to argue against it, because that’s what his bosses told him to do.

    Of course, I can’t begin to speculate as to what the man really thinks, but I’m just making the point that government attorneys have to argue against the Constitution from time to time. This is one of them.

  • http://www.myspace.com/frankworley Frank Worley

    Government attorney’s can also be directed to argue that the governments previous positions were wrong. Another argument to do all we can to get the right person in the white house next time around.

  • Artus Register

    Government attorneys are supposed to argue in favor of the government, right or wrong. That’s their job.

    No, they are supposed to act honorably and in accordance with their oath. They are supposed to act on our behalf and protect us only as far as the Constitution allows. We would be foolish to expect such actions, but remiss if we didn’t nonetheless demand them.

    government attorneys have to argue against the Constitution from time to time. This is one of them.

    This would imply that they regularly (or even occasionally) argue in favor of the Constitution. The sad reality is that when FedGov hauls someone into court, the vast majority of the time they are doing so outside of the parameters of the Constitution and are making illegal arguments that they have the authority to do whatever they are doing.

  • Stephen Gordon

    The 10th Amendment makes it very clear for anyone with third grade reading comprehension skills that the federal government’s power is limited to what the Constitution grants it, and that any power not so delegated, is reserved to the states.

    Perhaps a literacy requirement should be established for those in government service.

  • paulie cannoli

    Of course, I can’t begin to speculate as to what the man really thinks, but I’m just making the point that government attorneys have to argue against the Constitution from time to time. This is one of them.

    I vas just folloving ORDERS!

  • paulie cannoli

    Another argument to do all we can to get the right person in the white house next time around.

    We were SO close! LOL.

  • Devious David

    I think we all know and understand that our Congressmen, President and Supreme Court Justices are capable of reading and understanding the Constitution. It is not a matter of stupidity that they do what they do, it is a matter of tyranny and getting away with whatever you can in order to feather your own nest at the expense of others.

    The Constitution is a fantastic idea, but utterly absurd upon even the slightest examination. It’s approximate marginal value is equal to that of an individual square piece of single-ply toilet paper: you wouldn’t even bother wiping your soiled tail with it. And if you were foolish enough to do so by expecting it to mean anything, you should not expect to walk away without a dirty hand.

    Sure, we hear plenty of hot air from within the beltway about the Constitution, but of course whenever that happens, the speaker is willing to overlook OTHER select aspects of it to favor themselves.

  • Devious David

    Being a jumble of words, we should inherently understand that the meanings of those words are malleable by their wielders. We don’t all have take the same reading of the Bible, do we now? We don’t all walk away with the same impressions of Shakespeare, do we? Well, not unless we are in academia and trying to pass a course, we don’t!

    The Constitution argument is further PROVEN over and over time and again to be an abject failure and excercise in fulity. The Constitution was DOA immediately upon signing. Get over it. A piece of paper cannot deflect bullets, knives or even fists.