Oaksterdam: Marijuana University Raided By Feds

    April 3, 2012
    Amanda Crum
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Richard Lee, who founded and runs a school–Oaksterdam–to train people in the marijuana industry, saw his university and private residence raided yesterday after D.E.A. agents served him a search warrant.

The agents took stacks of paperwork and files along with several bags of marijuana plants, but did not give a reason as to why they had obtained a search warrant. Supporters of Lee and his work say it’s more than likely a political move to keep him from moving any further with his plan to legalize pot, which he bankrolled in 2010 with Prop 19 and which saw a record amount of voters in favor.

Police blocked the doors to the school yesterday as protesters looked on. Supporters of Lee’s efforts to legalize pot were surprised at the seizure of Lee’s effects yesterday, since Oakland has long been considered to be a safe haven for marijuana dispensaries. While the university trains students in areas such as horticulture and the business side of running a dispensary, marijuana is not dispensed there. However, one of the targets of the raid was Coffeeshop Blue Sky, a dispensary owned by Lee.

Oaksterdam is being raided at the moment. Please head down to 1600 Broadway in Downtown Oakland or RT. Thank you for your support!(image) 22 hours ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

Ryan Hooper, a former student of Oaksterdam, said, “”This is not in the best interest of the city. If they close the dispensaries, all of this stuff is going to go back underground.”

#SaveOaksterdam “He was changing the culture. And that is why the federal government is trying to silence him today.” http://t.co/0IsAt3Fq(image) 19 hours ago via web ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

  • Malcolm Kyle

    Excerpts from the Australian Drug Policy report titled: “The prohibition of illicit drugs is killing and criminalising our children and we are all letting it happen.”

    “For us, when we lost our son, we did not seek sympathy, we saw the injustice and craziness of our drug laws. We wanted people to focus on that, not on our suffering.” – Marion and Brian McConnell are founding members of ‘Families and Friends for Drug Law Reform’.

    “Many people who think of themselves as the beneficiaries of prohibition are really net losers. Parents are much more at risk of losing their children under prohibition than they would be if there was some kind of system where we had some measure of control over illicit drugs.” – Hon Professor Peter Baume AC, Former Chancellor of the ANU and Minister for Health in the Fraser Government

    “I think the idea that prohibition kills is an important one. So my plea is how can we get governments to buy into this issue? I think they need to see that what they are doing and not doing, is causing a lot of the harms. At some stage they have to be held accountable for allowing this to happen.” – Hon Professor Geoff Gallop AC, Former Premier of Western Australia

    “What we want governments to do is feel quite uncomfortable about the predicament they have put us in. They are running a system that is causing a whole lot of harm.” – Hon Michael Moore, CEO Public Health Association of Australia and former Minister of Health for the ACT

    “I am strongly in favour of legalising, regulating, controlling and taxing all drugs.” – Nicholas Cowdery AM QC Director of Public Prosecutions for NSW from 1994 to 2011

    “The key message is that we have 40 years of experience of a law and order approach to drugs and it has failed.” – Hon Dr Michael Wooldridge, Former Health Minister in the Howard Federal Government

    “The current policy of prohibition discredits the law, which cannot possibly stop a growing trade that positively thrives on its illegality and black market status. Like the failure of the prohibition of alcohol in the USA from 1920 to 1933, the current prohibition of illegal drugs is creating more harms than benefits and needs to be reconsidered by the Australian community.”

    “The move against prohibition is gathering momentum in other countries across the ideological spectrum as communities around the world place responsibility for the costs of prohibition where it belongs: with those legislators who continue, by default, to support the international prohibition approach.”

    “Beneficiaries of the current approach include the law enforcement industry, those who benefit from the occupancy of prisons and a thriving insurance industry that insures residents for the high rates of household crime. The converse of this is that law-abiding citizens are the biggest losers.”

    “Because the issue is trivialised in sound bites such as “Tough on Drugs” or “Soft on Drugs” the realities of prohibition are not seriously discussed and the major harms that result from this failed policy are not being addressed.”

    “By maintaining prohibition and suppressing or avoiding debate about its costs and benefits, it can be argued justifiably that our governments and other influential sectors of the community are standing idly by while our children are criminalised.”

    “It is time to reactivate Australian debate on this matter, drawing attention to the accountability of governments for allowing an unacceptable situation to persist , and the fact that the community has allowed this to happen.”

    “Drug taking undoubtedly produces serious harms to individual drug users and their families. Many of the harms to them, to others and to society at large are a result of the national policy of prohibition and criminalisation which, arguably, increases, rather than decreases, the risks of more people becoming drug dependent.”

    The discussion included 24 former senior state and federal politicians, experts in drug policy and public health and former law enforcement officers.