Have you ever known anyone using marijuana to walk down the street naked in broad daylight and proceed to bust clear through a wooden fence with his fist?
Probably not. Crazy vigor and super-human strength are not really side-effects, despite what almost a hundred years of “reefer madness” campaigns have portrayed. Unfortunately, those campaigns still exist.
Enter the NYPD’s recent attempt to bolster the War on Drugs (and the attempt to further legitimize brutal policing?).
At a Tuesday press conference, the police chief complained about a rash of encounters with people under the influence of what he repeatedly referred to as “weaponized marijuana.”
They were trying show scary imagery of the effects of synthetic marijuana, including a brand named K2. What they didn’t make very clear is that they were showing a clip from the television show COPS. Filmed in 2003. In another state. He was allegedly on PCP, which they also didn’t make clear.
They showed another clip from Brooklyn where another nude man is slapping the ground and yelling as police move in.
Raw Story reports:
While officials mentioned that the footage was taken out of New York state, it was reportedly not made clear that it originated from a 2003 episode of the show set in Des Moines, Iowa. It showed an unidentified man being taken into custody while naked and allegedly under the influence of PCP, after punching through a wooden fence. Lori Lavorato, one of the officers seen arresting him, told Gothamist that he was not arrested for PCP possession, and that he had no drugs with him at the time.
A spokesperson for the department said the footage was shown during the press conference “to depict the type of behavior sometimes associated with ‘excited delirium syndrome,’ a condition caused by use of PCP, K2 and methamphetamine, among other drugs. But when asked about documented connections between synthetic marijuana and the condition, the unidentified spokesperson said he was “not a doctor.”
Although a spokesperson said that NYPD never said it was K2 that the people were on – K2 is what allegedly showed up in the file names and subject lines of the footage emailed to the press. Now, that is strange.
This man from the clip is obviously dangerous, regardless of what flowed in his bloodstream. Yet, probably due to the “reality” show cameras, his life was spared. He was only pepper sprayed until he could be overcome. The same cannot be said for another man who was naked outside and acting strange. He was shot dead from a distance by an officer. (Maybe there should be a campaign against onsite executions, whether it be from law enforcement’s discovery of drugs or discovery of the drug-addled mind – plenty of real footage exists for that.) Case in point – what is the desired outcome of showing this footage at a press conference?
Is the NYPD trying to justify more force against those suspected of drug use? If so, why lay those charges on marijuana – why? In 2015, the average citizen should know better….
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