Drugs fuelling Canadian street gangs, says author

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Michelle
Drugs fuelling Canadian street gangs, says author

 

Michelle

[url=http://www.thecaribbeancamera.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view... good reason to legalize drugs, I guess.[/url]

I found this interesting because I had a similar conversation with a cab driver the other day. He was saying that he thinks the reason for the violence and the shootings in high school is mostly to do with drugs, drug dealing, and drug wars between gangs.

quote:

He has written about street gangs in his book Youth Thugs - Inside the Dangerous World of Canadian Street Gangs and says gangs should not be addressed in isolation. "You cannot look at gangs without looking at illegal drugs. According to Health Canada's numbers in 2005, approximately 3.8 million Canadians tried or consumed illicit drug at least once. Millions of Canadians, willingly or unwillingly, are supporting the big business of gangs, because it's a big business of drugs," Michael Chettleburgh told a full hall of members and guests at the Conflict Mediation Services of Downsview Annual General Meeting on Tuesday evening at the Oakdale Community Centre. He said once this trend continues, it will sustain gangs who will continue to recruit young gang members to sell drugs and earn big bucks "because the demand is so powerful." Chettleburg said the most prevalent drug being used is marijuana and a large percentage of major users are white males, ages 35-44. "I can take you to corners downtown Toronto on a Friday night where guys driving nice cars are pulling over to the side and buying their drugs for the weekend. They are supporting the drug business and inadvertently or not, fuelling gang activity." Chettleburgh attributes lack of transition of new Canadians, persistent discrimination, growing income inequality - "there is a huge gap between rich and poor," he told the audience -- and criminal behaviour as some of the issues that lead to people joining gangs.

In referring to the recent police raid on the Crips gang in the Jane and Finch neighbourhood, the author said that this wasn't the answer to the problem. "A sweep is a good PR move…a feeling of enhanced community safety at least temporarily, it tells the rest of the community that we are on the job, we are not going let the gangsters rule our communities. It's a blunt instrument." He said gang sweeps choke the criminal justice system.


P.S. It was nice to see this myth dispelled in this article:

quote:

He said research has shown there is no link between violent videos and kids who get into gangs adding that hip-hop music also has no bearing on gangster. "Judging by music sales, the hip hop culture is the number one musical genre in North America right now, but over the last 10 or 15 years, violent crime among youth has actually declined," Chettleburgh said.

[ 02 July 2007: Message edited by: Michelle ]

Rexdale_Punjabi Rexdale_Punjabi's picture

people who say hip-hop causes violence are stupid. This sayin in the hood explains it all

yo "niggas in the streets rap about what happens, aint no niggas gun clappin cuz of what a nigga rappin". 

understand? and yea it true and raids don't do anything all it does is take a older element out that many times teaches the youths to stay in school cuz the ppl who messed up don't want the youths to. Taking them out n raidin em adds to the prison industrial complex and sets up a new generation for failure once again. The system in the end is the problem the ppl in it are just doin what they need to to pay they bills. 

"You can't raise a family on minimum wage/ Why the fucc you think most of us are locced in a cage" - Immortal Technique

Michelle

What do you think of this article?

I'm kind of...I don't know.  I don't know what to make of it.  I don't get what the point is that he's making, or how he's connecting it to broader criminal justice policy or practice.

I guess I'll have to wait until he "gets back to this" to see what his conclusions are.

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

Marc Emery would probably agree:

"Prohibition laws are manufacturing more sophisticated criminals," he said. "All jails are run by gangs, and these young 19-year-olds who go to jail for small-time [pot] charges are making gang ties and are expected to maintain gang activity once they get out."

http://lfpress.ca/newsstand/News/Local/2009/08/18/10492761-sun.html

remind remind's picture

They are not just expected to maintain ties, they have to, or perhaps die.

I have serious issues with the article actually Michelle.

Buddy Kat

All that is so true it's not rocket sceince anymore. The message has been repeated and proved so many times the only logical conclusion is the government actually wants gangs of all stripes for a reason.Being were in  capitlist democracy the reasons point to money...who is benifeting from all these street gangs? Lawyers ...justice system..police ....politicians and there vote for me and I'll be tough on crime lines...They need the street gangs and the problems and the crime ...without it there would be no need for them.

 

Who are the biggest losers in all this ...the tax payer ..the victim of gangs and there crimes..children but not the conservative ones ..they don't do drugs....there saints ahhhhhh.

Actually the best one can do is just educate these people on how they are just fueling the problem..like chomsky says about terror...if you don't like it don't participate. The problem is how to educate these people and thats where I think Marc emery and others that get into the anti prohibition thing have a valid arguement. Before you can educate these people on the dangers of drugs and crime you have to cut the financial incentive off.

With the government losing it's war on drugs ..other methods have to be used. Combining a drug availability program with a medical and educational one is the only way it will be solved. Failing that the situation will get worse and worse . With the police breaking down doors and swarming people and swat unitsetc all set examples for the gangs to follow . I would expect Mexican type situations in the future where targets will be law enforcement and eventually the government itself. They are making there bed to sleep in. That's fine for them but suppose I don't want to sleep in there dirty corrupt bed....

It should be obvious by now that the problem was created by the government and the rcmp to feed lawyers (tomorrows politicans). That's where people should start looking. Fix that corrupt criminal mess and then we can get somewhere.

Rexdale_Punjabi Rexdale_Punjabi's picture

it's a lot more then a financial incentive the money is nice but it's bigger then that it always is and always will be if it was just money, actually Ill leave it at that.

Tommy_Paine

 

I won't ignore the class and race aspect to all this.   The only "bad" drugs are the ones that you buy from you're buddy/grower at work.   If you get your drugs through the high class channels, through your health care professional, through your drug retailer professional, from your  corporate supplier, then your "okay".

I read an article in Sceptic magazine a while back.  Did you know toddlers have been perscribed ritalin?  How many people do you know are dependant on anxiety medication?  How many people do you know who have tried to quit their anxiety medication and can't ?

And most news media, and health Canada are loathe to bring any attention to the problems associated with Oxycontin, and percodans and percocets.

Opiates.

Who made those opiates that are now the real street drugs?  Afghan farmers?  Asians in the Golden Triangle?  Imported by the Mafia and sold by the Hell's Angels?

No, these opiates come to you via rich people.  Rich people fucking up your friends, family and neighborhoods.

That's the gang that should be written about.

 

 

Maysie Maysie's picture

Yes, Tommy_Paine. Yes.

Coyote

A few things on this:

I want to start with my usual pro forma statement about being careful not to stigmatize people who are on anti-depression/anti-anxiety medication. Quite frankly a lot of people need help and I know too many god-damn many people who just wouldn't be with us today if it weren't for the fact that they realized there was a problem and they went to get help. That's important.

Second, I'm sorry FM, I love ya, but Marc Emery is a pathetic little man running a grubby little business and trying to sanctify himself in the eyes of the credulous and we just shouldn't let him get away with it. He has said a lot of stupid things in his time, but his latest stunt of actually condemning Health Canada for releasing finding of the deliterious effects of burning things and sucking them into your lungs . . . he's a shill, out only for himself.

On the drug war: watch The Wire. I have my criticisms, but probably the best story anyone has told about the true toll of the drug war.

 

Stargazer

If they legalize weed, then we have answered the problem. People injest alcohol, legal (and sometimes deadly) medication and we cannot smoke a freaking joint? This bullshit war on drugs has to stop.

Tommy_Paine

 

Marc Emery has probably done more harm than good for the anti-prohibition cause.

 

The prohibitionists tend to inhabit the right wing of the political spectrum.  Why not use one of thier icons as a spokesperson for anti-prohibition?

“Even if one takes every reefer madness allegation of the prohibitionists at face value, marijuana prohibition has done far more harm to far more people than marijuana ever could.”

---Crypto Fascist William F. Buckley Jr.

Tommy_Paine

Reading the "Youth Cime and Flawed Statistics" by Ralph Surette brought this to mind.

When I was a kid, before Steve McQueen and Ali McGraw made crime pay in "The Getaway", movies and T.V. had to impart the lesson that "crime doesn't pay."

But in those days, the social contract included the idea that you could graduate high school, get a decent, if not good paying job, raise a family own a house and retire.   Clean living, unlike crime, did pay, at least for most.

Today the kids know that isn't the case. 

Clean living and hard work is for rubes.  If they hadn't learned it before this economic downturn, they sure as shit know it now.

 

remind remind's picture

Funny...I have never met a "clean" living person, people always attract "dirt" of some type. ;)

"To dream the impossible dreammmmm....."

The social contract is set up in favour of those best positioned to exploit the others who for some reason believe they should adhere to it, even though they have not read the fine print, nor agreed to its formation.

Personally, I avoid most contracts, unless of course they are on line community ones. :D

 

 

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

Coyote wrote:

Second, I'm sorry FM, I love ya, but Marc Emery is a pathetic little man running a grubby little business and trying to sanctify himself in the eyes of the credulous and we just shouldn't let him get away with it. He has said a lot of stupid things in his time, but his latest stunt of actually condemning Health Canada for releasing finding of the deliterious effects of burning things and sucking them into your lungs . . . he's a shill, out only for himself.

Well, you know, even pathetic little men with grubby businesses can be right about some things.

As for the Health Canada study, this is the same agency that says 2,4D is safe for you to put on your lawn and let your children and pets play on. It is a captured agency promoting a political agenda and I don't believe it. Health Canada, by-the-by, also approves all those pharmaceuticals that routinely kill people.

There is a doc out called The Union on the BC pot indutsry and it cites a study that came out during the Reagan years that said smoking pot would cause brain damage. As it turned out, scientists pumped monkey's up with an obscene amount of marijuana smoke to get the results they wanted.

Emery asks a valid question: where is the proof? How many Canadians are hospitalized for the effects of smoking pot? Let Health Canada release their findings for review and critique.

Buddy Kat

Tommy_Paine wrote:

 

I won't ignore the class and race aspect to all this.   The only "bad" drugs are the ones that you buy from you're buddy/grower at work.   If you get your drugs through the high class channels, through your health care professional, through your drug retailer professional, from your  corporate supplier, then your "okay".

I read an article in Sceptic magazine a while back.  Did you know toddlers have been perscribed ritalin?  How many people do you know are dependant on anxiety medication?  How many people do you know who have tried to quit their anxiety medication and can't ?

And most news media, and health Canada are loathe to bring any attention to the problems associated with Oxycontin, and percodans and percocets.

Opiates.

Who made those opiates that are now the real street drugs?  Afghan farmers?  Asians in the Golden Triangle?  Imported by the Mafia and sold by the Hell's Angels?

No, these opiates come to you via rich people.  Rich people fucking up your friends, family and neighborhoods.

That's the gang that should be written about.

The link between government and big pharma is real..the lobbying that goes on and the laws that are created to appease them prove it. IE: patent vs generic production and a variety of drug acts etc. The power they exert is pretty strong also and as was pointed out it's practically an industry in marketing attention deficit disorder drugs to hyper active kids. They are really good with coming out with names of new disorders to market their poisons....remember "house wife syndrome" they used that to market valium. Of course now they have ruined the economy so both spouses have to work to make ends meet and as stressed as they are, they now market "anti depressants" . You can write many books on them alone. From the murders and mass murders people commit relating to them to the suicides and too the prolonged psychological effects and hellish problems the majority will be left with.

Regarding banning drugs . A good example would be the opium poppy...chalked full of alkaloids besides morphine and codeine pharma has made a killing branding dozens of extractions and modifying (think heroin) and mixing the raw ingredients with all kinds of snake oil drugs and marketing them under a variety of names ..multiply all the drugs by all the companies and you have a financial windfall...provided you make opium illegal to everyone except them. Enter the government, and there enforcers and what you have is the essence of organized crime. Talk about gang! In every sense of the word.

 

Looking at pot and all the ailments it can address and all the products that can be produced from it you have to really wonder what their problem is. M Emery did a good job showing the financial windfall any entrepener could enjoy if it were decriminalized., even the government itself. He also squashed out many of the arguments police and government as well as medical people used to demonize the plant. So something is awry that the government would spend tax dollars so wastefully, and destroying lives in the process trying to stamp it out while at the same time shutting the door on thousands of business's and 100's of industries and millions of jobs. Just so a hand full of drug corporations can grease there party coffers. You don't think everyone knows how corrupt and criminal that sounds. Regardless of criminal laws. It's a damn example for gangs to follow. It is organized crime.

Another strange thing about the governments laws are the banning of drugs that aren't used by big pharma YET, but just to make sure any accidental discoveries aren't made without them , they manage to ban them too.

With mass unemployment on the way and all the social costs to come if they think people are just going to sit around and die poor paupers they got another thing coming. The lucrative financial incentive of gangs and drugs will be the norm as well as crime in general. The devil will find work for idle hands to do, so I hope they enjoy the hell they created.

Mr right wing is probably saying "good let them die"....but they missed the point. They created an underground infrastructure they can't control. A few virii get in there and they can kiss their rotten little hinds good bye. So someone but most likely somethng has to stop this madness before we all are subjected to the repercussions of these neurotic right wing nutjobs. Now they want you to roll up your sleeves ...big pharma and government want to inject you with the latest snake oil vaccine concoction. It should be something to see how desperate they become when they start using fear tactics and start scaring people into submission via right wing media hysteria err I mean reporting.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AkM5eyN8ytI&feature=user

melovesproles

Quote:

Marc Emery has probably done more harm than good for the anti-prohibition cause.

Oh Bullshit.  If that was true the prohibition cause wouldn't be trying to extradite and imprison him.

The obscenity of extraditing a canadian for selling marijuana seeds is something everyone I know grasps.  My grandmother who I never knew had an opinion on marijuana is enraged by it. 

If he has been such a flop then why is his homebase-Vancouver lightyears ahead of every other place in Canada when it comes to the anti-prohibition cause?  Somehow he hasn't acted as a drag on that.

I understand why many don't like him, I certainly don't like everything he has said or done but that's no reason to not recognize reality.

I think his personality doesn't lend itself especially well to the electoral side of politics but that's a pretty small part of his legalization activities.

Legalizing marijuana has been a no-brainer for a long time, my parents tell me their local NDP candidate back in the 70s assured everyone concerned that it was a priority.  I think relying on politicians to change this law is definitely useless.  It'll change, (and has been changing)regardless of the party because eventually you won't be able to defend prohibition without getting drowned out in laughter.  Just as happened with alcohol prohibition it will be the widespread complete disregard for the law that will bring about its inevitable demise.  And Emery has been a leader in encouraging, demonstrating, and articulating that disregard.

SparkyOne

I don't think pot is a harmful  drug.

Smoking and Alcohol in my opinion are much more dangerous to someone physically (not to mention others)

However what some people will DO for pot is dangerous.

 

Would legalizing marijuana fix things? I'm not sure.

I think it would addict more people to it,naturally. It would be easy to get mind you it's not like it's that difficult now.

You wouldn't have people blowing each other away over it. Amount of B&Es would drop, maybe not hugely but they would.

 

Government can't tax it like they can Cigaretes and Alcohol soooooo, fat change of it getting legalized anytime soon.

 

NorthReport

Some of the comments made about drugs and politics are rather naive, in relation to political reality.

Some things you talk about before you are elected, and some things you talk about after you are the government.

melovesproles

Quote:

I find some of the comments made here about drugs and politics rather naive, in relation to political reality.

Some things you talk about before you are elected, and some things you talk about after you are the government.

 

I think its naeive to expect significant help from allies who can't even admit their support in public until they are firmly entrenched in power.  That's where we are right now amongst many on the political left-its 'harmful' to be frank about opposing anti-prohibition and 'helpful' to be silent. 

I beg to differ.

 

jrootham

NorthReport, that is a major league cop out.

How long ago was the LeDain Commission?  An honest and straightforward position on Marijuana is not going to hurt in the NDP universe. 

In fact, having that position will enable the NDP to accuse the other parties of being in favour of gang funding.  What's not to like about that?

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

NorthReport wrote:

Some of the comments made about drugs and politics are rather naive, in relation to political reality.

Some things you talk about before you are elected, and some things you talk about after you are the government.

I guess you really love, Obama. A true liberal, he ran from the left with nice progressive language and then turned into the right wing that he talked about with distain. I have yet to see a politician run from the right and then govern from the left. I expect that a politician who will not talk about a progressive issue before being elected will never raise it after being elected. Does that make me naive?

___________________________________________

Soothsayers had a better record of prediction than economists

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Boy now I have to reread a thread from a year ago to answer a snarky comment.  Your use of the word frack is one of the cleverest things I have seen around here.  

So in the same vein I say eat number two.

Sky Captain Sky Captain's picture

Try to get a guy to answer a simple question....

 

NorthReport's got a point, but instead of responding to him about it sensibly, you bring in Obama as a topic, just to make youself look cool.

 

But you're not being cool, you're being a fool, and you're being a demogauge as well, making you no better than the right-wing you oppose. And coming close to being a racist as well. If that's what you want, go ahead. Just be aware, to me and anybody else you are as I said above.

Sky Captain Sky Captain's picture

Obama is anethma to people like you tied into dogmatic ways of doing thngs and to those who wanted a magic solution, kropotkin1951. Nobody else.

And just what the frack does Obama (everybody's favorite magic Negro/whipping boy) got to do with this discussion?

Maysie Maysie's picture

Sky Captain, you reopened this dormant thread to post an insult to kroptkin. No personal attacks and insults are allowed.

kropotkin, you responded with further insults. Not okay. Just because you were insulted first doesn't make it ok. Don't do it.

Closing.

Topic locked