When you criminalize people who are not infringing on the rights of anyone else, tragic stories are inevitable. When it comes to marijuana prohibition, there is no shortage of tragic stories.
The number of those who have been criminalized simply for helping sick people with cannabis was long ago uncountable. A more recent example of this is the rather bizarre turn of events that brought 70-year-old Paul Koren to the attention of law enforcement.
Two years ago Paul began growing cannabis for his nephew who suffered from a degenerative muscle disease. The medicine helped Paul’s nephew gain some weight and helped him sleep better. So Paul kept growing.
As word began to get around, others asked Paul for help. All in all, Paul says he helped about 20 people. All that changed on January 7th. That day, intruders entered Paul’s house through an unlocked side door and proceeded to beat him as they searched the house for money, guns and drugs.
The intruders’ vehicle being parked suspiciously down the road caused the police to be alerted. When deputies arrived the intruders fled and Paul was busted.
Even though it seemed to Paul that his basement grow operation had been destroyed by the robbers, officers say they found 36 plants weighing about 45 pounds, along with an ounce and a half of mushrooms Paul said was likely left by one of the friends who helps him grow.
To be fair, I don’t know Paul Koren and can’t vouch for the authenticity of various parts of his story. What I do know is that he is facing up to 6 years in prison. So if his story is true and he has been helping people in need, the possibility of him going to jail is a travesty.
Paul’s bust story became even more bizarre after one of the intruders was found trapped in a freezer in Paul’s basement. Despite having a heat stroke and suffering from a lack of oxygen, the man was alive.
No matter what the outcome is in Paul’s case, there are many people all over the country just like him – not hurting anyone by growing marijuana in their home. In fact, the only person hurt in all this is the man facing jail time after being pistol-whipped by men who were in his home illegally: Paul.
Until marijuana is completely legal, people will continue to be criminalized even though they have not infringed on the rights of anyone else and good people will continue to go to jail.