I spoke at the January 24, 2019 meeting of the Milwaukee County’s Intergovernmental Relations Committee in regards to File no. 19-161: the resolution brought forward by
The Fair Deal for Milwaukee County Workgroup.
The Fair Deal for Milwaukee County Workgroup is attempting to address the structural deficits the County faces by virtue of the fact that State Shared Revenue, along with the other forms of compensation the County receives from the State, have not kept up with inflation. They also point to unfunded mandates and to the arbitrarily low percentage of revenue the County is allowed to keep from various revenue streams like Court Fees. The Fair Deal group is trying to change State Law to address the structural deficits the County faces.
This looks like Trickledown Justice to me: the people living in Milwaukee County will get their just share of services that the County is obligated to provide if the County in turn gets its just share of revenue from the State. I am requesting that Milwaukee County seek justice directly for the people living in the County by lobbying their State and Federal masters to remove the unjust and unsustainable mandate to enforce the Controlled Substances Act.
Please see my recent article documenting some of the harms and collateral damage we see here in Milwaukee that result directly from the War on Drugs.
The premise of laws like the Controlled Substances Act is that The State has a legitimate right to control what the people inoffensively possess and consume. The fact that neither you, nor I, nor any living human being, has the right to control what another human being inoffensively possess and consumes is too obvious to ignore. Yet The State presumes to protect us by denying our fundamental right to be the masters of our own bodies.
I’m not suggesting that anyone can use the excuse that they consumed a substance to avoid personal responsibility for any action they take while under its influence that deprives another human being of their inherent right to life, liberty, property and the pursuit of happiness: that would be a crime. Equally obvious is the fact that there are many dangerous substances that are readily available that have the potential to cause tremendous harm. My point is The State’s arbitrary distinction between one dangerous substance and another, criminalizing the production, distribution, possession and consumption of the one while “legally” sanctioning the same for the other, is a power that that they have no lawful right to exercise. “The stream cannot rise higher than the fountain”, and a State, which purports to derive its just powers from the people cannot assume powers that the people themselves do not possess. The notion that the people can consent to bestow on the government powers that they do not have is fraudulent, abhorrent to Republican form of government, and a corruption of Democracy into mob rule.
Rather than hoping that Justice will Trickledown, I am advocating that we compel government to let Justice Reign.