Prop 5

Join Together deconstructs the failure of Prop 5 in California. It seems to boil down to mistrust of the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) and the DPA’s failure to include others in developing the proposal.

It’s not the cool thing to say these days, but my mistrust might have caused difficulty deciding how to vote. This explains why:

NORA supporter John DeMiranda, executive director of the National Association on Alcohol, Drugs and Disability and Pacific Southwest regional representative for Faces and Voices of Recovery, said that the treatment community in California “jumped on the bandwagon and talked about NORA as a treatment initiative,” even though DPA mainly cast Prop 5 as a drug-policy reform effort.

I’ve never been able to shake the feeling that the DPA’s support for treatment is more strategic than sincere.

Also, does FAVOR really want to get associated with aggressive decriminalization efforts?

“If we were to do our own initiative it would be very different, and the politics would be very different,” said DeMiranda. However, he scorned the state’s drug courts for failing to embrace the reforms embodied in NORA. “We need wholesale decriminalization, not retail decriminalization,” said DeMiranda, noting the relatively small number of clients currently served by drug courts.