07/01/20 Doug McVay

Doug McVay who produces Century of Lies, talk about racism and the drug war. PLUS: the thoughts of Michelle Alexander, author of the New Jim Crow.

Cultural Baggage Radio Show
Wednesday, July 1, 2020
Doug McVay
Drug War Facts
Download: Audio icon FDBCB070120.mp3


I am Dean Becker. Your host, our goal for this program is to expose the fraud misdirection and the liars whose support for drug war empowers our terrorist enemies enriches barbarouscartels, and gives reason for existence to tens of thousands of violent, US gangs, who profit by selling contaminated drugs to our children. This is cultural baggage.

All right, folks, I am Dean Becker. This is cultural baggage. We've got an interesting show for you this time. We're going to do a video series called, Becker's buds, Conscientious Objectors to Drug War, and the other day, me and Doug McVay who produces century of lies, uh, attempted the first one, that was a morning I was feeling particularly poorly. I looked like a hammered horse hockey, so that video is not going to air. And then secondarily, he and I are both white. We're trying to talk about racism and the drug war. So please forgive us if we overstep or miss the point so to speak. And we're going to close this out with the thoughts of Michelle Alexander, author of the New Jim Crow.

My name is Dean Becker. I call myself the Reverend most high. I run an outfit called the church of evident truth, but doing that for about 20 years, um, it is my pleasure to introduce the first guest for this, uh, um, Becker's buds, uh, video series guy. Who's been working with me now for years who has done hundreds of my, uh, well now his radio program, century of lies, uh, based up in Oregon. Now my friend, Doug Mulvanny how you doing Doug Dean. Good to see you. Good to see you. Thank you for joining us. Yes, I, I hope this is the first of many, uh, of these Becker's buds, uh, gatherings, if you will, um, got a database of many hundred approaching a thousand, uh, guests, who've been on my radio shows over the years and I'm hoping many of them will join us here to, uh, discuss the, the fallacy, the failure, the futility of this drug war. Now, Doug, you have been the editor of drug war facts for a lo these many years. Please tell the folks a bit about that endeavor.

Of course, drug war facts is a project that was started by common sense for drug policy foundation back though heavens more than 20 years ago. Um, it's in process of shifting, we're actually moving sponsorship from common sense drug policy to real reporting foundation because drug war facts facts really is a tremendous resource for any journalist out there. Anyone who's, whether you're writing a letter to the editor or researching an op ed or trying to do an a, an actual news article, um, or researching or a project at school, whatever drug war facts is terrific, direct quotes, complete citations, um, links to the original source materials, updated constantly and continuously and expanding at all, uh, in all kinds of directions. Um, it's a resource that's made available free of charge. We're a private foundation. So we just want to get information out there to try and inform the debate and try and help people, um, you know, reach good conclusions.

We think that an informed society will over time or should over time at least generate wise policies. Um, is he, it was started back in 98, uh, Paul Lewin and Kendra Zishe created the very first database and the very first, very small booklets. And then I came in in 2000, it grew and we grew and we created the cspp.org blog. And I left for a time. And, uh, Jenny, Jonathan Crane and Amy Long, and, and Mary Jane Borden, uh, took over the, uh, the drug war facts for a few years. I came back in 2013, had been doing it since got it.

Now it occurs to me that we are now living in a new environment, a situation where, um, the obvious is being recognized. And by that, I mean, the fact that, uh, racism is, uh, being seen as the heart, the, the, the driving force behind much of the drug war tactics of law enforcement and the courts. And, uh, it it's, it's never been more obvious.

No, it's true. And that long history of drug war facts is partly to underscore what you're talking about is the fact have always been that we have a, just a criminally bad criminal justice policy. We have, uh, you know, it's, it's racist from one end to the other end and classes, and there are other issues within it too. Um, the facts have always been that reform is vital. The facts have always been that drug use should be decriminalized and legalized. I mean, the facts always been on our side. It's really been about getting people to, just to care, you know, and, and it's, it's, it's sad. It's, it's horribly sad that, um, that it took a murder live on film to get people caring, but that is what it takes. And it's getting that pushed right in their faces. I mean, I've been even back in eighties when I was working at NORMLl, the statistics and the data from the justice era, just, just explore was fascinating.

And again, it showed the same stuff that, that these harsh punishments don't really work. They don't really deter what deters people is the probability of actually being caught and what we've got you talk about racism, being apparent. When you look at drug use statistics, because you have so many people of color black and indigenous and people of color who are being arrested and prosecuted in so many more people who are white, who use drugs are involved in trafficking, but the problem [inaudible], the problem is much bigger than just that, because you can also look at for instance, criminal victimization. And we find that the vast majority of incidents of criminal violent victimizations in this country are committed by white people against other white people. And yet there's a higher proportion of blacks and indigenous people and other people of color in prison for those offense, if you're white, you're less likely to be arrested. You're less likely to be prosecuted. You're less likely to go to prison if you're found guilty

And less likely to spend more years behind bars.

Exactly. Exactly. It's not just with drugs. It's just more apparent when you look at drugs because we have this other use data.

Well, I would submit them that, um, because of this drug war mentality that the police carry with them, they have, uh, through the use of, uh, the legislature's, um, been given access to no knock warrants, then given access to stop and frisk by local authorities in essence, uh, and, uh, you know, three strikes, laws, and mandatory minimums and all of these things that are heaped upon the black community, um, most particularly, and, um, it, it has it's reared, its ugly head. And I dare say this carefully that the black community needs to, um, delve into this needs to, uh, use this as a means to, uh, to help make these changes occur. Your thought there, please.

Well, you know, one of the problems that in the 1980s, um, we had members of the congressional black caucus who were joining in the call for harsher penalties, Charlie Wrangle, and others were leading the charge and in the nineties Wrangle, and many others started to realize that they had been played. I mean, the, this sort of knee jerk response of, if someone's doing something you don't like then, and then punish them quickly and you have it, who's being punished and for watch and for how, and, and, um, I mean, in, in recent years, things have shifted and that's been important. Um, but it's, but yeah, I mean, it's, it's, it's, it's sorry. I was looking at a, I was trying to find a statistic that was going to be, that I think is quite interesting. You know, we have about (750) 700-4700 plus thousand people who are serving time in, um, counting, Oh, here we go.

738,400 inmates in jails around the United States. Um, last time we checked and that's a point in time, right? That's at one on one day during the year, there were that many people or actually 10 million people or 10 million people cycling through jail at any time during the year, all these people getting criminal records and you get the criminal record. And as you pointed out several times on, on cultural baggage, people get that record and it's a stigma, good luck getting a proper job, can't get licensing. And a lot of professions, even things like cosmetology. I mean, what in heaven's name are we doing? You're making it impossible for people to make a proper living, forcing them to live in the illegal economy or forcing them to accept really horrible, low wage jobs where they're treated badly, don't dare speak up or Jack, because he's going to be out on the street. If you do. It's a, it's, it's a ridiculous system and you're right. I mean, we've demonized the drug use so much all you really need to say, Oh, well they were a druggie and no one seems to care as much. You know? I mean, we still, there are still people, there are still people trying to justify what happened to George Floyd based on the criminal record he acquired while living in Harris County. I, I, on a social media, just, uh, my friends list just got one smaller today because of this.

Well, and that, that happens all too often ,that it happens to be, um, I don't know, I I've been on Facebook sharing this meme that, uh, um, people who are racist, seldom believe they are racist because it's like handed down from grandfather to father, to son. And it's just the family tradition, but that's, um, uh, and it needs exposed. It needs, uh, uncovered. Does it not?

You know, my grandfather was the, um, manager of industrial relations at a Maytag company's plant. Number one for many years after the war, they changed it to labor relations. Now we're back to being human resources. I'm not sure if that's progress in any case. He was one of the people who was charged with making sure that Maytag, um, you know, hired I, and I it's embarrassing and it hurts. And it hurts to say this. And if my cousins hear this, they're going to be upset with me for saying it out loud, but grandpa was sexist and he was racist. And he was one of the people made sure that the folks coming into Maytag companies plant number one in the forties and fifties were white folks, Protestant, maybe get a few Catholics saying, but only they're real quiet about it. And he was a, um, he was an old school Mason and he got a lot in my life that I need to make up for because of my insects.

Well, I, I, I don't know about my ancestors involvement in racism, but I do know the little town I grew up in Southern Illinois. And I don't know if I have the term, right, but it was a drive through town where blacks were not allowed to stop within city limits. Maybe if they were out of gas and they hurried, they could, they could fill up, but it was not allowed. And, um, I remember as a little kid, the, uh, the high school having a, you know, major events and, uh, the, the local, uh, Banker and mayor that would get on stage and do black face and sing Mammy.. And now all of these things that I, at the time, I didn't understand, but now I realize it was a perpetuation, even in Southern Illinois of this racist, uh, community standard, your thought, please,

I, I grew up in Iowa. We were really proud, you know, being a union state, my ancestors on both sides were in the union army, you know, so it's, um, on the one hand we have that, but yeah, I mean, Southern Illinois actually has more places like that. I was, and, you know, I mean, grandpa's ancestors may have bought on the side of the union, but it was trying to make sure that, um, and this was back in the old days when white also meant no people of Latin American ancestry, no Italians, because anybody who was, you know, Nordic and English and German is what, you know, white as an evolved thing. I mean, it's true. I mean, it has, it has changed in its definition and it's, um, and it's just, it's just everything. It's just stupid. What on earth do people think? I mean, for heaven's sake? Well, but then again, it's easy for me to say that here we are in the 21st century, right? I mean, we're, we're hopefully a little smarter, hopefully

To remind you, you are listening to cultural baggage on the drug truth network on Pacifica radio. We're speaking with mr. Doug McVay, DTN reporter. This is taken from a video that no one will ever see. Cause I look too Haggard anyway, back to our interview with Doug,

Oh, with our drug truth network, we're now producing nine radio segments per week of 450 something. I think it is per year, we're approaching our 8,003 radio programs. So, and this, our first video production of Becker's buds, the, uh, uh, conscientious objectors to the war on drugs. And I feel that, uh, the, the main thing is, you know, the truth. I know the truth about the drug where I think nearly knows a lot of the truth, but they're afraid to commit themselves their, their, their efforts, their words, their focus to actually exposing, to ending the stupidity. As you were talking about of this racist drug war, it's such an obstacle, you and I worked to help expose and motivate, um, people to, to take that step. Do we not?

Indeed we do. And you know, that's the thing I was thinking about recently, in fact, because there are, and I've seen people doing this, you know, policy experts and people who are, you know, on this, since I go, you know this, yes, but you're over, but you're underestimating the political problem. Oh, this you're making it sound so easy, but you're not, you know, the public health experts make it sound so easy to have track and trace, make it sound. You are going to have harm reduction and consent, but you're not accounting for the political difficulties. You just know. And it's like, no, keep we're not accounting, but we're not talking about the political difficulties. We're talking about what needs to be done. We're not trying to talk people into not wanting to do it. We're not trying to do you're right. It's going to be hard and it's going to be tough.

And that's why we got to bloody press on and make it happen. That's not why we decide, Oh, well, it's going to be too hard. So I guess we better just not bother. Those are the people that get on my nerves these days. It's the ones in there and they're out there, you know, smart people. Oh, you know, Oh, well obviously these systems don't work. Obviously this has to happen. But then the other shoe, of course it'll never happen because no one really cares that, that part. How many years have you been doing this since like 2000? Since the nineties?

Well, in 2098 when I was working with a New York times drug policy forum. And, and before that I was, you know, writing a screenplays and, and trying to delve deeper to find the, the heart of the problem and the deeper you dig, you just find it's evil. It's it's propaganda. It has no nexus with reality whatsoever. It's just, I call it a quasi religion,

My point is though half an hour of radio programming. You're doing each week, each week for 20 years, half an hour, a week, 50 weeks a year. Yep. Okay. Well, I'll give a, give them, give pledge drives. Rebroadcasts preempted bird for holidays, you know, but 50 to 52 half hours every single year, for that many years, you I've had the privilege of doing century of lies since about 2014. Is it so five, six years, once a week, 52 times a year, and they're learning stuff. And they're realizing that you can actually do this. You can speak out about how bad the drug war is. You don't have to worry that you're to be, um, you know, have your door knocked down and be thrown in jail doors over there. We're fine. You know, you can actually talk about legalizing. You can talk to the ledger, you can do all these things and make real progress. When I started out, I was at normal working in the 1980s when LV Noosa became the third federal marijuana patient, you know, the third person in the coal entire country to receive medical pot. And now here I am in Oregon, and this is a container that I purchased of legal marijuana at a dispensary, just a few blocks of what, just a few blocks away. You know, we did this.

Yeah, paramount. What is, is so necessary. As I mentioned earlier, is that the black community pick up this, this tool, put it to work that, uh, the it racist, there's no getting around it. It is ugly. It is continuous. And, and it plays out nearly every day on TV where some black man is, uh, being traumatized or murdered. And the heart of it is, is the mentality of the drug war, which gives license, which gives the, um, the, the police, the mentality that this is okay, cause he might have drugs or even if he doesn't, well, he probably did earlier or something, but it is always a means a, a motivator to law enforcement and, and it plays out so much more severely against the black community.

Oh, absolutely. I mean, honestly, this is the, this exchange between you and I are. It's the most that, you know, I love about your show and I love about the way that I do. I'm doing the same thing as we're trying to amplify the voices of others involved in this. We're trying to I'm I try to center my show around people affected by, by people who use drugs by people or within the community. I want those voices and those perspectives to be centered. Um, this is the most talk that I've ever done in a, uh, in a thing. I mean, you and I, we have to interview people, so we have to talk a little bit, but you know, it's, it's honestly, it's a little weird putting us because in a way we are centering ourselves right now. But, but then again, it's our, but that's because we're talking about our shows and we're talking about the future and the reality is that yeah. I mean, that's half the reason as I say that, I try and, um, bring in other perspectives and try and bring in the voices of other folks I'm needs to me the best show. The best show I do is one where you hear my voice, introducing it and closing it. And otherwise you got, otherwise, you've got people who you should be really listening to.

No, I that's so true. I, uh, well, I guess it's time to wrap it up here, but I want to say this, that our show has been diverted here in Houston to, uh, just before the prison show now on Friday nights. But, uh, you know, we get, uh, uh, shuffled around here and there, I guess like most radio programs too, but tonight my show features, uh, Roger Goodman, he's a representative up there in the state of Washington, very knowledgeable, very, intelligent man who, who is unafraid to speak of the same subject. You and I have been discussing, uh, openly boldly. And, um, you know, who's on your show tonight.

Well, this one is a, a broadcast where we were using some audio from a recent hearing. The Senate judiciary committee has been looking into police brutality. I mean, everyone on Capitol Hill right now is focused on police brutality, racist enforcement, the murder of George Floyd was a really strong trigger or a lot of things. And, um, I mean, it's not just his murder, it's the culmination of so many things. So many Briana tailored, Sandra bland, Freddie Gray. I mean, there's so much, but, um, we have been finally looking at it and, um, and having discussions. And so, uh, Vanita Gupta who we met years ago when she was still at the Washington, um, civil liberties union and working on some of their, uh, some of their projects up there. And then of course went to justice department and their sub had their civil rights division. And now she's the president and CEO of the leadership conference on civil rights.

Then you've got, um, a couple of other folks, Doug Logan jr. The Reverend Doug Logan jr. Who is a, um, really fascinating speaker. Um, and, and, you know, and I, and I appreciate that. He's got a positive message. I mean, as a, as a preaching, you kinda hope so. Right. Um, but it's, uh, it's, it's so easy to focus on the negatives and the uses and the tragedies and to leave off the, um, you know, the, what we must do art, but, um, but yeah, that's it. So we're, we're, we've been talking a lot about the racism and about the, the murder of joy Lord and the police abuses. And there's a, and there's bloody good reason, you know, because we need to, and, and again, kinda center other people. But at the same time, I also want to use the privilege that I know that I have to be able to push this stuff forward, to be able to push these ideas out there. And, um, you know, if people listening, the great leadership, we did say knowledge is like pollen, an idea, rather it's like pollen. Once it's in the air, you never know who's going to sneeze.


Well, real good. Uh, folks, once again, I've been speaking with mr. Doug McVeigh, uh, the, producer now of the, a century of lies show on the drug's truth network. You can access, 'em nearly 8,000 of our shows at drugtruth.net, and you can access a lot of information. Doug edits and stores at, uh, drug war facts.org. Thank you, Doug. Thank you. It's time to play name that drug by its side effects.

A fusion changes in breathing heartbeat or blood pressure or unusual changes in behavior agitation and irritability, worsening, depression, suicidal thoughts, leaking really large breasts, impotence, stroke, and death. Time's up the answer from Sunovion pharmaceuticals incorporated for depression.

All right. Now, as promised here's part of an interview I did with Michelle Alexander author of the New Jim Crow. Tell us about the, uh, escalation of the prison building era, uh, how this came about.

Yes, well, you know, within a relatively short period of time, we went from a prison population of about 300,000 to now nearly two and a half million in the space of just, you know, a few decades, our prison population quintupled not doubled or tripled quintupled. And this exponential increase in the size of our prison system was not due to crime rates as is so often believed. Um, and as told to us, um, frequently by politicians and media pundits, um, no, uh, rather than crime rates, the explosion of our prison population has been due largely to the drug war. Um, a war that has been waged largely, um, in poor communities of color, even though studies have now shown for decades, that people of color are no more likely to use or sell illegal drugs than whites people of all races and ethnicities use and sell, um, legal and illegal drugs in the United States.

But it has been primarily overwhelmingly poor people of color in the United States who have been stopped, searched, arrested, and incarcerated for drug offenses. And once you're branded a drug felon, uh, you're relegated to a permanent second class status, uh, once labeled a felon, you know, you may be denied the right to vote automatically excluded from juries, legally discriminated against in employment, housing, access to education and public benefits. So many of the old forms of discrimination that we supposedly left behind during the Jim Crow era are suddenly legal. Again, once you've been branded a felon and it's the drug war primarily that is responsible for the return of millions of African Americans to a permanent second class status analogous in many ways to Jim Crow.

And the thing that strikes me right between the eyes from this book is that we have walked away from our amendments. We have walked away from what was prior valid and useful law that the Supreme court and various courts have determined though. They say there is not one that in effect, there is a drug war exception to the constitution, which allows all this to unfold. Are your thoughts on that police?

Yes. Well, I devote, you know, a full chapter in the book to the shredding of the fourth amendment, um, in the drug war. Um, you know, once upon a time, it used to be the case that law enforcement officials, um, had to have reasonable suspicion, um, of criminal activity and a reasonable belief that someone was actually dangerous before they could stop them or frisk them on the street, um, on the sidewalk or, uh, stop and search their car. Um, but today, um, thanks to a series of decisions by the us Supreme court. As long as police can quote unquote, get consent from an individual, they can stop and search them for any reason or no reason at all, giving the police license to fan out into neighborhoods and stop in search just about anyone anywhere. Um, you know, consent, um, is a very easy thing to obtain. Um, if a law enforcement officer approaches you with his hand on his gun and says, may I search your bag? Will you put your hands up in the air, turn around? So I may search you and you comply, uh, that's interpreted as consent, but of course it's precisely that kind of discriminatory and arbitrary police action that led the framers of the constitution, um, to adopt the fourth amendment prohibiting unreasonable searches and seizures.

I want to thank Michelle Alexander for having helped to educate me. I want to remind you that because of prohibition. You don't know what's in that bag. Please be careful.