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I'm just curious the amount of man hours spent and the cost to the tax payers per arrest. We are talking about a college kid who will buy a bag for $20 and sell it for $25. This isn't exactly going after ring leaders or organized crime. This is a publicity stunt that the police did to pat themselves on the back and tell everyone at church about how they're keeping the streets safe. Go bust some damn crack and meth dealers like some men, instead of a bunch of lazy investigations.
Actually their is a big difference in selling copies of CDs and selling weed.
You should familiarize yourself with copyright law. A Copyright gives the copyright holder exclusive rights to making copies of the CDs and selling or distributing the CDs. When you purchase a CD, you enter into a contract with the owner of the CD, who is the copyright holder. You agree to pay them a fee (the price of the CD), and you also (whether you know it or not) agree to adhere to the copyright law that they hold. Breaking this copyright law or not paying for the CD is a breach of contract. This is more or less a type of theft (you agree to do/pay something in exchange for a good or service and then don't hold up your end of the agreement).
Selling marijuana is completely different. If someone grows marijuana in their back yard, they are the owner of the marijuana (just like the copyright holder is the owner of the CD). Since they are the owner of the marijuana they can decide to sell it. So they make an agreement with a person who wants to purchase the marijuana from them. More than likely they will exchange the marijuana for money. The person pays them the money and they receive the marijuana, so now the purchaser is the owner of the marijuana. However, should the purchaser not pay the agreed upon amount of money, he can not become the rightful owner of the marijuana.Not paying the owner of the marijuana the amount agreed upon is the equivalent of selling copied CDs. In both cases, the parties came to an agreement on a plan to exchange a good for something else, and in both cases, the purchaser did not hold up their end of the contract.
So really, the two ideas you're comparing are nothing alike. In the case of the CD, it is (and should be) illegal to sell a copy of a CD, because at the time of purchase, you agreed to give the CD owner money and you agreed to not copy the CD for distribution purposes. Selling marijuana on the other hand is illegal because the state (the U.S.) says it is. They are not the owners of the marijuana, so the exchange of the good should have absolutely nothing to do with them. They are neither the buyer nor the seller, and the exchanging of the good does no direct harm to anyone outside the exchange, therefore they have no rightful reason to intervene.
So to answer your question, no I would not feel the same if they were arrested for counterfeiting. One should be illegal, because it is theft (selling copied CDs). The other (selling weed) , I see no reason why it should be illegal.
This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by manley0702 17 months ago
First, I appreciate the reasoned discussion.
I am actually quite familiar with copyright law. Counterfeiting a copyrighted material isn't theft, it's a violation of the Copyright Act, which is its own cause of action. Selling counterfeit Chinese goods likely is going to be either a Patent or Trademark action, with Trademarks being a totally different branch of law entirely. You sign no "contract" when you buy a CD, you just get an implied license under our Congressional Copyright scheme to use a protected work when you purchase it. My point was just that these things are illegal simply because Congress made them illegal.
Where you draw your line seems to be that you agree with the rationales behind Copyright law, but not those behind our drug laws. Clearly we could argue that til' the cows come home and never get anywhere. I'm just noting that even under a positive spin as pot sales being a "victimless crime", it's still a violation of existing commercial laws, much like how people who illegally sell music with admittedly astronomic prices under the RIAA are often argued to commit a "victimless crime" that doesn't warrant the harsh punishment. It isn't the cops fault that they have to enforce a law you disagree with.
Yes, I understand it's a violation of existing commercial laws, and I would never risk my livelihood selling pot just because I believe it "should" be legal. I just believe that laws prohibiting the growth and trade of marijuana is a violation of individual's property rights. If an individual truly owns something, than the government should have absolutely no right to tell the individual what to do with that thing, unless it causes damage to someone else (ie. you own a gun and you shoot someone with it, it would be right and just to take that gun from you). The way I view marijuana, growing and trading it does not cause damage to others, therefore I see no argument against the prohibition. If someone sells me a CD they produced, with the only condition being the money I pay for it, then after I've payed that money, I'm free to do what I wish with it. However, if they sell me a CD they produced and we agree that I can't reproduce it (how buying a copyrighted CD works), then the CD is mine, unless I violate the agreement. If I don't like that condition, I simply don't purchase the CD.
I believe it is morally wrong to break a contract with someone, as in reproducing a CD that you bought under the condition that you would not do so. However, I see nothing morally wrong with trading goods (like marijuana) that cause no damage to anyone outside the trade. All that being said, I would call someone an idiot if they sell marijuana and risk going to prison, but that doesn't change my belief that they should be allowed to do so without repercussion. If the Federal government decided to prohibit chicken, and to imprison anyone who broke this law, I would be furious. There's nothing morally wrong with buying and selling chickens, and to prohibit this would be tragic. But at the same time, you wouldn't see me on the street corner selling chickens.
I think if our law was nothing more than the non-aggression principle, we could avoid violating all individual rights, while still punishing those who cause damage to someone else. Unfortunately, that would mean the exit of our government, and there's a lot of people who have a lot to gain from controlling people through the government.
Edit: I too appreciate the reasoned discussion. It beats the heck out of the guys that come in here, throw out an exclamation and an insult, and there's barely if any hint of the discussion topic in their response.
This post was edited by manley0702 17 months ago
I'm sorry, and this is my last post on this topic, but when you've got U.S. Marshals involved, it's gone past a college kid making $5 off of a bag of weed. Publicity stunt by the cops??? Jesus Christ people.
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