No one disputes that marijuana grows in national forests and in remote areas cause problems. Not only environmentally, but anyone who happens to come across these grows becomes a witness and whoever is guarding/running the grow has every incentive to make sure that unfortunate soul isn’t able to tell anyone about the grow.

There are only two ways to eliminate these grows: 1) A continuous series a full military invasions of every forest in this country to sweep out the constant supply of criminals or 2) legalize marijuana.

Under marijuana legalization cartels and gangs will have no reason to run these grows since the price drop that will come with legalization will force them out of the cannabis business ( just as the end of alcohol prohibition ended bootlegging for all intents and purposes). And regular cannabis users will be able to grow in their own home or yard, so they won’t need to trek into the forest to grow plants.

Under marijuana legalization, Fort Bragg, CA city councilman Jere Melo would still be alive. It seems councilman Melo had a degree and a lot of experience in forestry, which led to his job as a security contractor for a timber company. He was on the job yesterday when he heard about a marijuana growing operation nearby.

When Melo and another man came upon the grow, the person guarding it opened fire, killing Jere Melo, leaving his widow and two children without him.

Authorities are searching for Aaron Bassler as their suspect for the murder. When will the madness of prohibition end? How many people have to die before we realize our approach has simply failed?

People are dying, the environment is ravaged, untold millions have been run through the criminal justice system, tax coffers are empty and drug dealers and cartel leaders are rolling in cash.

And above all, drug use continues to go up. So what is the point of all this?

- Joe Klare

  • grayson

    its not the price drop that will stop the cartels, its the legalization itself. criminals wont supply marijuana after legalization; state licensed businesses will.

  • http://soundcloud.com/jekkler jekkler

    Ain’t that the truth…

  • Cyberghetto

    Crime syndicates will always do just fine no matter what you legalize, regardless of whether you call them gangs, cartels, mafia, terrorists; its all the same thing. I’m sure they could always sell bath salts and k2 to morons… and they’re just aching for the day when somebody tries to outlaw a pack of smokes.
    It would be awesome if marijuana were of no use to actual criminals, like people whose affiliations with it require them to carry a weapon. But to remove that element from the criminal world will not make the criminal world go anywhere.

  • malcolm kyle

    The following post is not meant for the patrons of the 420 Times.

    Prohibition does nothing but bankroll dangerous criminals, corrupt officials and international terrorists. Alcohol prohibition in the US (1919-1933) is a casebook example of this dangerous folly. Today, alcohol is taxed and regulated and the shoot-outs over turf and the killing of innocent bystanders are no longer a daily part of the alcohol trade. So how come many of you here lack the ability to learn from such an important historical lesson, and are instead intent on perpetuating the madness and misery that prohibition has always invariably engendered? 

    It is clearly our always-doomed-to–fail policy of prohibition that is causing this intense misery. We need to fix ourselves (start thinking clearly) and in doing so, we will not only help rid ourselves of this terrible self-inflicted curse but also help to heal the whole planet.

    Are we really such an adolescent nation that we can expect neither maturity nor cognitive thought from either our leaders or our populace? This is not a war on drugs; it’s an outright war on sanity!

    Colombia, Peru, Mexico or Afghanistan, with their coca leaves, marijuana buds or their poppy sap, are not igniting temptation in the minds of poor weak American citizens. These countries are merely responding to the enormous demand that comes from within our own borders. Invading or destroying those countries, creating more hate, violence, instability, injustice and corruption, will not fix this problem. We need to admit that It is ourselves who are sick. Prohibition is neither a sane nor a safe approach. Left unabated, it’s devouring inferno will surely engulf every last one of us!

  • horse

    News today indicates the killer was guarding a poppy field.

  • Eric Sunswheat

    No marijuana found, no growing pot plants, just over active imagination to fuel the drug wars, and failure to investigate the truth. Try mendocinosheriff.com

  • Penny

    According to my news in AZ it was a poppy field that was being guarded.