On Monday, Toby Iselin of Keene, New Hampshire, sent a short, polite email message to his state representative, Delmar Burridge, asking him to support a full legislative debate on a marijuana decriminalization bill that the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee, on which Burridge serves, was scheduled to consider this week. "I know you are opposed to this bill," Iselin said, but "I hope you will consider passing it through committee so that all sides will have their chance to speak on it." Burridge responded with predictable prohibitionist bluster, starting with his account of how marijuana killed his brother (who "was smoking a joint before the crash") and moving on to the "family devastation," "severe burns," and "lots of blood and death"—apparently all marijuana-related—that he witnessed as a juvenile probation officer in Philadelphia during the 1970s. "I will vote no on this Bill," he said, "and have lots of very chilling stories to relate to the other committee members so it goes my way." Fair enough. But then Burridge closed his message with what sounds like a veiled threat:
I am copying two members of the Keene Police Department in case you want to change your ways and act legal and save your friends.
You are very passionate in your beliefs and would make a great snitch.
Burridge evidently believes the police should take an interest in anyone who expresses support for drug policy reform. Talk about chilling.
[Thanks to NORML's Allen St. Pierre for the tip.]