April 08, 2006

The "War on Drugs": Your Dental Work, Please

Ain't "freedom" just grand?
TACOMA, Wash. - Government lawyers tried to confiscate the gold tooth caps known as "grills" from the mouths of two men facing drug charges, saying the dental work qualified as seizable assets.

They had the men in a vehicle headed to a dental clinic by the time defense attorneys persuaded a judge to halt the procedure.

"I've been doing this for over 30 years, and I have never heard of anything like this," said Richard J. Troberman, a past president of the Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. "It sounds like Nazi Germany when they were removing the gold teeth from the bodies, but at least then they waited until they were dead."

Prosecutors had a warrant to seize the gold dental work, according to documents and lawyers involved in the case. But they eventually abandoned the effort, saying they mistakenly thought the grills were removable.


"Asset forfeiture is a fairly routine procedure, and our attorneys were under the impression that these snapped out like a retainer," said Emily Langlie, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in Seattle.
Remember: it is not a "War on Drugs," just as it is not a "War on Terror."

Both dishonest phrases are merely the excuse and the propagandistic justification for the massive expansion and consolidation of government power, always at the expense of personal liberty. And the "War on Drugs" should more properly be called: the War on (Some) People Who Use (Some) Drugs (That We Happen to Disapprove of Today).

In more respects than most people care to recognize, we are all "living by permission." And your government will thank you for not forgetting it. Ever.

But go ahead, Georgie: spread some more of that goldanged "freedom." We know how much you love the way it smells in the morning.