Before I unpack how federal drug policy is affecting our law enforcement, I want to review a few things in this short post.
1). Law enforcement in America was first and foremost for the people, never against the people. Remember that the job of government is to protect us and our private property from each other in order to preserve and promote liberty. This means that law enforcement, working for the people, with the primary goal of protecting and upholding the Constitution, must always fight for the liberty of the people. This is not a position meant to relish power. This is not a position meant to blindly follow laws. This is an active role with accountability to the Constitution and to the people. The people should never be the enemy. As soon as law enforcement sees the people as the enemy, authoritarianism is not far to follow.
2). The federal government was never given a police force. The federal government was not given the power to “police” or to make laws that would warrant or need a “police force”. In the same way they feared a standing army because almost every previous standing army had been used to oppress its own citizenry, the creators of our government feared that use of a police force against its own citizenry. Law enforcement can be the most powerful weapon of an arbitrary, unconfined government. Police powers, not simply law enforcement powers, were left to the states—with intention.
3). Federal drug policy has introduced a massive amount of federal police organizations, powers and investigatory agencies into the national scene. Federal drug policy relies on the commerce clause to justify its existence. The commerce clause can be stretched and interpreted to mean almost anything as long as the government deems it commerce. Because of this vast expanse of power, federal agencies such as the FBI, the DEA and many others are empowered to hunt and imprison a vast amount of American citizens as will. I repeat, this power is propped up by the commerce clause.
4). Federal police agencies, along with the local police that are increasingly funded by and joining forces with the federal government, are becoming more and more militarized. The look, the presentation, the training, the methods, all project that powers of a “standing army“.
We must always remember that government is made up of men and women just as flawed and selfish as the people who needed government in the first place. This is the reason that it was set up the way it was… including the specific allocation of police powers to the states rather than the federal government.
With all of this as your foundation, review my previous few articles and get ready for Federal Drug Policy Part 3.
The Liberty Belle