Friday, 12 May 2017 11:52

Wipe the Cheetos from your keyboard and seek real change

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Lance Martin is editor and publisher of Lance Martin is editor and publisher of

From your keyboard, stained orange from the Cheetos and Doritos you have consumed in your purple haze state of bliss, the bong still smoking, you decide now is the perfect time to deride the po-lice.

It’s a travesty of justice these jackboots have the audacity to arrest someone on possession of marijuana charges, you write.
Pleased with your initial efforts because you are a J.D. Salinger or Jack Kerouac when you are blazed, you let some Phish Food ice cream dribble down your chin and onto your already stained keyboard and continue your missive, raging against the machine.
Seems we’ve written this column before but it probably bears repeating. “Hey, genius, you criminal defense expert, you armchair civil litigator, weed is still illegal in North Carolina.”
“But, dude, it’s so bogus, the cops trampling my civil rights, wasting my taxpayer dollars going after something God intended for us to share, break bud together in fellowship in a divine right of spiritual passage.”
OK, Cheech, can it. We’re pretty sure the taxpayer dollars you feel are being squandered probably belong to your parents, so whatever.
Perhaps instead of writing comments criticizing the cops you should take your ever-so eloquent Sylvia Plath brooding keyboard and fire off a letter to your elected state officials or your elected federal leaders, petition the DEA for a change in the scheduling.
Just because you, as you listen to hour-long tedious jams played on a vacuum hose by Phish, want marijuana to be legal, well it doesn’t make it so and you should wipe the Dorito dust from your sweatpants, join NORML or some other organization and fight for your right to party.
This is what makes the change, not you whining about it, not you preaching to your chronic choir on social media it’s so unfair and blah, blah, blah.
We had thought at one point about not running petty marijuana arrests because we truly believe in the legalization ourselves, believe it’s probably no more harmful than cigarettes and well, liquor, that legalized potent drug which those who scoff at ending the prohibition of weed point to. “It’s a gateway drug,” they cry. Yes a gateway to chocolate chip cookies and a midnight run to Taco Bell.
Then we thought, it wouldn’t be fair to those caught with other drugs — heroin, cocaine and the pain pills, the many painkillers which represent an insidious problem here and across the country.
So, no, suck it up, we’re sticking to our guns and will continue reporting these arrests until a time comes weed is made legal.
So whatchu gonna do? Continue railing and ranting about every little story that comes across? If you want to see real change, lick the Cheetos stains from your fingers, put on a shirt that doesn’t reek and start lobbying for change.
And don’t tell us the cops should do more about the heroin problem. Heck, they just made the largest bust of the year from a supply pipeline that ran from Patterson, New Jersey to Scotland Neck and a guy who’s getting ready for sentencing has taken a plea for selling right in the Lincoln Heights community. And then there’s those cops, 14 of them have already pled and while it was fake drugs they were transporting, the greed and intent was there.
It’s easy to forget those stories when you’re chomping at the bit like a fighting dog to find fault that the cops, God forbid, are doing what they’re sworn to do, it’s just they’ve attacked something you hold near and dear like a cherished Sublime album or maybe your dealer or close friend was busted.
Nope, as much as we believe marijuana should be legalized, it doesn’t matter many dealers are turning their businesses into candy stores where you get what you want and when you want it like the open air market on Church Street.
So where does that leave you? Do you now not hold the dealers accountable for everything they’re selling just because you have these vivid dreams of one day sucking down a joint while strolling the avenue?
Come on, dude, you guys are smarter than that, channel your passion where it needs to go, to our lawmakers, to organizations which can help make the change and not at our law enforcement officers who can’t turn their eyes away from something that currently stands as illegal.
Fire up in the privacy of your homes but know the risks, clean up the stains on your keyboards and point your Henry Miller stream of consciousness rants to the ones who can tell the po-lice it’s now OK to listen to your Widespread Panic albums on your phone as you smoke a fatty on your porch because it’s legal — Lance Martin

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