October 21, 2011
By Jonathan Benson
If an American talks about using marijuana or other drugs in countries where such activity is perfectly legal, or even just discusses the hypothetical idea of such an activity with a friend or family member, he or she will be committing a felony crime under a heinous new bill recently passed by the US House Judiciary Committee.
Sponsored by Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), the Drug Trafficking Safe Harbor Elimination Act of 2011 essentially applies US policies in the “War on Drugs” on the entire world, and makes it a crime for Americans to engage in, or even just talk about, activities that are legal abroad, but illegal back at home.
“Under this bill, if a young couple plans a wedding in Amsterdam, and as part of the wedding they plan to buy the bridal party some marijuana, they would be subject to prosecution,” said Bill Piper, director of the national affairs for the Drug Policy Alliance, a group advocating for reform of US drug laws.
“The strange thing is that the purchase of and smoking the marijuana while you’re there wouldn’t be illegal. But this law would make planning the wedding from the US a federal crime.”
The wording of the bill is so broad and all-inclusive that it even includes US doctors that work internationally with therapies that may be illegal back in the States. In places like Portugal, for instance, where all drugs have been decriminalized, US doctors could face severe prosecution for contributing to, or being involved with, medical projects going on there.
Non-Americans that conduct activities which are legal in their native countries, but illegal in the US, are also considered in violation of the law if they step foot on American soil, even during an airport layover. And Americans living overseas and producing natural medicine that is prohibited in the US, for instance, can also be targeted under the new law (this technically already happened to herbalist Greg Caton because of his anti-cancer salves: http://www.naturalnews.com/033573_F…)
“Just when you think you can’t get any more cynical, a bill like this comes along,” attorney and author Harvey Silvergate is quoted as saying by Huffington Post. “There’s no intuitive reason for an American to think that planning an activity that’s perfectly legal in another country would have any effect on America. This is just an act of shameless cultural and legal imperialism. It’s just outrageous.”