When All Else Fails, Blame The Medical Marijuana Patients


You did a really shitty job of reporting this story, Chloe.

​”More crimes are linked to people with medical marijuana cards.” That’s the lead and the headline that bubble-headed bleached blond Kennewick, Washington TV news reporter Chloe Beardsley went with, just because a small-town police sergeant told her so — of course, without any proof. No numbers, no statistics, just the word of a pot-hating local lawman.

Sadly, the depressingly shoddy, almost entirely fact-free work by “NBC Right Now” reporter Beardsley — and, by extension, her employer, TV station KNDU — often seems more the norm than the exception when we’re counting on mainstream media to report on the medical marijuana question.
Incredibly, no patients or patient advocates were interviewed for this story, despite the fact that medical marijuana patients are apparently to blame for a huge crime wave. Wouldn’t it have been interesting, newsworthy, or at least balanced and professional to maybe interview one of the group who is being accused of being responsible for all these terrible things? You’d think.

“Police say they’re seeing more drug related crimes since people started using medical marijuana cards,” Beardsley cluelessly reports. It seems she didn’t ask, or didn’t get, any actual, you know, numbers from the police who are claiming these extraordinary things. Of course, that’s perfectly OK, Chloe. We can just trust the nice officers when they’re talking about a subject that, well, impacts their job security and departmental budget… can’t we?

Sgt. Ken Lattin: “We’ve seen an increase — and we knew we would! … The problem — if we could look at it on a bar graph — we could see that it continues to grow”

​”Police have seen the boost since day one,” Beardsley meaninglessly reports. When and what was “day one,” Chloe? What “boost”? Do you think maybe your cop friends would like to show us this big crime boost they’re talking about?
You know, I think they keep, like arrest reports and stuff… it shouldn’t be too hard, should it?
“We’ve seen an increase — and we knew we would! — in thefts, in burglaries, home invasion robberies…” Sgt. Ken Lattin of the Kennewick Police Department claimed.
Again, no numbers, no statistics, just smug Sgt. Lattin telling us so, and that in his awesome cop wisdom, he knew it before it even happened.
“The problem — if we could look at it on a bar graph — we could see that it continues to grow,” a nodding Sgt. Lattin, practically asphyxiating on his own smugness, tells us with enormous satisfaction.

Capt. Mike Cobb: “There’s always gonna be people who take advantage of whatever system you put in place”

​Well, hell, Sergeant — why don’t you just show us a bar graph then, instead of telling us about one? That shouldn’t be very hard for a smart cop like yourself, should it?
But Beardsley seems to have been too busy to ask any hard questions of her friends in the police department; hell, after all, Chloe seems to have done everything but give them a hand job while “covering” this “story.” She should be on the payroll as a public relations agent! Why would she want to catch them in a lie?
Oh, and wouldn’t you know it? Those nice lawmen who gave Chloe this, er, “story” were kind enough to hint around at a possible solution to the big, bad scary crime wave they want us to believe is taking place.
“Police say as long as the cards are out there there will still be problems.”


​Mm-hm. There you have it, folks — end this damned medical marijuana program and our crime problems will be over! Right from the mouths of our trusty law enforcement officers, and who would know better, right?
In one unintentionally revealing moment, Richland Police Capt. Mike Cobb admits, “There’s always gonna be people who take advantage of whatever system you put in place.”
Exactly, Captain! There will always be people gaming any system like this. But that doesn’t equal a big, scary crime wave. That just equals some guy able to catch a legal buzz — horrors! Or not.
Fortunately, Beardsley’s audience doesn’t seem to be as credulous as she is.
As of Tuesday afternoon, her story had six comments —  and none of the commenters were taken in by the absurd assertion that medical marijuana patients were causing all this crime.
“None of these things are tied to the down economy and its all tied to cards?” asked commenter “ddawgdonavon.” “Seems like an extremely lopsided and biased story.”
“Am I to believe that there was no home invasions, no drug busts no nothing until these cards were issued,” commenter “John” reasonably asked. “The cards aren’t a big problem, they are just easy to blame.”
In the absence of, you know, any actual numbers or statistics regarding this supposed crime wave caused by rogue medical marijuana patients, we get a couple of anecdotes. Why hell, those are almost as good as facts and statistics, aren’t they?
Well, let’s take a look and see.
Recently there was a drug bust at a home on Davenport Street in Richland where 9.5 lbs of pot was found and 2 people were arrested. Then there was house off East Perkins road in Finley where 5 men were arrested and 12 lbs of marijuana was found with other drugs. What these cases have in common is someone had a medical marijuana card.
Oh, Christ, Chloe. I guess those two cases prove the contention of the cops that these danged ol’ medical marijuana cards caused all this crime, eh? No? OK, guess not.
Showing the glimmerings of some dim awareness tha
t these two lame-ass examples might not really be enough to prove a big, bad crime wave, Chloe then gives us two more examples of how these medical marijuana cards cause crime.
The examples she chooses to use — undoubtedly from among the many, many available, since, don’t forget, this is a major medical marijuana crime wave we’re talkin’ about, here — are of medical marijuana patients being ripped off in home invasion robberies.

Home invasion robberies have happened in our area from people who have medical marijuana. One incident was at an apartment building on North Arthur Street and another on 3rd Avenue in Kennewick. People were tied up and their medication was stolen.
Now, somehow, those cardholders were just asking for it, don’t you think? Growin’ all that damn ol’ marijuana in their houses, as if they could do any damn thing they please… So, really, you might say it’s their fault that criminals broke into their houses and stole their medicine, right? …Right?

Of course not. Any greenhorn reporter worth his or her salt would immediately see that crimes upon marijuana patients aren’t exactly good evidence of crimes committed by marijuana patients.
Everybody except poor Chloe, evidently.
But, hey — her hair looks great!