A tiny silver lining in the dark cloud that is the the federal government's attack on former Morro Bay medical marijuana dispensary operator Charlie Lynch is that RAIDING CALIFORNIA, reason.tv's documentary short that tells Lynch's story, has received much renewed attention.
For a time yesterday, it was the top story on boingboing. It pulled big numbers at Digg, and made Salon's Five Things, which "ranks the five hottest breaking news stories, gossip, viral videos and more at any given moment in time. Frequently updated, 5 Things filters the best of the Web."
The attention comes at an especially fortuitous time because the trial of Charlie Lynch has just begun, and will likely last most or all of next week (i.e. the week of July 28).
Supporters are encouraged to attend:
U.S. District Court
312 North Spring Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012
The trail resumes at 10:45 am on Monday, and--although the schedule is subject to change--9:00 am Tuesday and Wednesday.
Stay tuned to reason.tv for updates throughout the week.
If convicted on all counts Charlie Lynch could face a sentence of 100 years in prison--five times as long as the average sentence for first-degree murder in California--for doing something that was legal under state and local law.
Even more bad news for the Lynch family: Charlie's youngest brother was recently diagnosed with colon cancer, and will undergo surgery on Wednesday. Charlie's mother plans on splitting her time next week between hospital and courthouse.
If you're still not completely saddened and enraged, visit this DEA website which proudly announces the raid on Charlie's dispensary:
"The marijuana traffickers arrested today claimed to sell the drug for medicinal value, but it's clear that marijuana's financial value was their true motivation," said Timothy J. Landrum, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA in Los Angeles. "These dispensary operators are no different than any other drug trafficker: they prey on people in our communities to make a profit. DEA and our law enforcement counterparts will not turn a blind eye to flagrant disregard of our nation's essential drug laws-laws designed to protect our citizens, communities, and children."
Ask Owen Beck how well those laws that were supposed to protect him were designed. At age 17 Owen was diagnosed with bone cancer, had his leg amputated, and endured chemotherapy treatments. The only thing that eased his pain and nausea was the medical marijuana Owen's parents obtained at Charlie's dispensary.
With the raid, the federal government overruled the wishes of Owen, his parents, his Stanford oncologist, the community of Morro Bay, Charlie's clients, and the voters of California.
Quite a feat, fellas.