Ex-DEA Spokeswoman: 'Marijuana Is Safe', Kept Illegal Because It's A 'Cash Cow'

Tyler Durden's picture

Authored by Alex Thomas via TheAntiMedia.org,

Before the heroin epidemic became a nationwide problem, claiming thousands of lives; Plano, Texas, was already entrenched. And like many of the places caught in the crosshairs of the continuing heroin crisis, Plano is the last place that one would expect to be swept into the opioid tidal wave.

Anti-Media recently interviewed Texas-native Belita Nelson, who has had an interesting few decades.

For six years she termed herself the “chief propagandist” — or spokeswoman — for the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). Before that, as a Plano mother and teacher, Belita noticed what was happening in her community. She described Plano as an area rivaling Newtown, Connecticut, or Cape Cod — tight-knit regions where tragedy strikes hard and deep.

She explained that [Plano] has the best school districts in the state of Texas…it’s a gated community. And in 1998, for heroin to be that prevalent in the community was stunning. Stunning. We got all the media attention because we were this upscale Texas neighborhood that nobody thought would be inundated with heroin.”


Nelson decided to take action, saying, I decided I’d had it. I was going to organize my community and fight this thing at the grassroots level. But we were never grassroots because the first thing I did was go on the Oprah show for the DEA.”

Belita stresses that she was never officially employed by the DEA but traveled for six years as a sort of unofficial spokeswoman for the agency.  The group recruited her because their goals aligned, and in many ways, she was perfect for the role. She was a mother who had witnessed the toll of heroin first-hand. She was passionate and knew what she was talking about. Belita spoke to schools and parent groups and appeared on television networks.

With the help of a former Dallas Cowboy, she founded the Starfish Foundation to tackle heroin addiction. That organization ran until 2004 when one of the employees pocketed the donation money and left the foundation scrambling in the dark.

In our interview, Belita was hesitant to speak too openly but mentioned that when she first went to work with the DEA (she was contacted and became familiar with agency’s goals), she was told “‘Marijuana is safe, we know it’s safe, but it’s our cash cow and we will never, ever, give it up.’ When the DEA seizes a car or makes a drug bust, it’s likely they’ll find wads of money. They turn in the pot (or other drugs) — and keep the cash. Civil asset forfeiture law essentially gives the police and feds free reign, and they have confiscated billions of dollars from Americans, a majority of whom have not been charged with a crime.

Belita, like many people, posits that the DEA is not willing to give up the long disproven idea that marijuana is a “gateway drug.” Unlike heroin, most people are open to trying marijuana. At high school or college parties, it’s much more likely that a joint is being passed around than a needle. While a joint conjures up images of Bob Weir or SOJA on stage, a needle brings to mind a lifeless Philip Seymour Hoffman or Basquiat.

Belita cut ties with the DEA in 2004 after becoming frustrated with the system and the government’s need to keep marijuana criminalized, despite knowledge that the drug was safe.

While at the Starfish Foundation, Belita heard time and time again the tale of pot-smoking teenagers who were pushed into heroin simply because marijuana carries harsh penalties. And it’s a story that’s been told repeatedly. Today Belita works for the Gridiron Cannabis Foundation,  a nonprofit dedicated to fighting CTE, concussions, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, neuropathy, dementia, chronic in?ammation, Leukemia, and brain and other cancers. But the group’s pockets that only stretch so far.

In contrast, her opposition — and the opposition of anyone fighting the heroin epidemic and hoping to legalize marijuana — are big pharma companies.

Recently, we’ve seen pharma companies hit the grassroots to secure influence. Anti-Media and a number of other news outlets recently reported on an opioid company pumping half a million dollars into Arizona anti-marijuana groups in an effort to keep the plant illegal. These sorts of campaigns do not serve the dead in Plano and the hundreds of thousands around the nation suffering from opioid addiction. Rather, they benefit CEOs and pharmaceutical groups who have invested millions in developing drugs that minimize pain. Unfortunately, they come with a dangerously high likelihood of addiction.

Big pharma corporations see dollar signs in every painkiller that moves across a counter, but some of which could easily be replaced by marijuana, which is increasingly proven to help decrease pain. So the American consumer, from Plano, Texas, to Portland, Maine, is faced with the dilemma — is it better to be a living Bob Weir or a dead Basquiat?

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numapepi's picture

This article starts to address the real problem, the scourge of drugs in our culture, and in doing so it serves us all.

Rather than focus on red herrings like gate way drugs, civil asset forfeiture, etc... The problem how to stop the scourge of drugs is twofold.

First it is a cultural problem, rooted in our hedonistic, immediate gratification, alienating and shallow culture. Each generation rebels in it's own way. That rebellion has been ratcheting up for generations to the point the cutting edge, if you will, is not even heroin but sex change. Our culture has become toxic to our kids, teaching them they have no stake in society, alienating them just when it should be embracing them and creating a sense of hopelessness.

Fix the culture, (get rid of cultural Marxism), and the drug problem will largely solve itself.

The second part is the vast amounts of money that reside in the drug business. People here have talked about big pharma, the inherent pernicious conflicts of interests that run throughout the war on drugs, even the drug kingpins themselves, align against solving this seemingly intractable dilemma. Billions of dollars are at stake if the scourge of drugs were ever stopped... saving countless children's lives, adding trillions to the economy, people who would have been a drag become pullers instead, drastically lower crime rate and the unknowable additions to or store of knowledge people would contribute... were the problem of drugs solved.

Get the money out of keeping drugs a problem and much of the drug problem will collapse of it's own weight.

gdpetti's picture

Drugs aren't the problem, if it was, alchol would still be illegal.... making them illegal encourages all the problems that surround them... which our corrupt system feeds off of... this is how the system works... central banks and all their friends help the money/grease move around and keep the wheels of state sponsored corruption going strong.. the empire has to continue to expand or it loses momentum and starts to collapse, same with our stock/bond markets... same with religions based in lies, same with all businesses that pretend to be something they aren't.... mini or maxi empires are all the same... ours has reached maximum expansion and the 'correction' to the expansion has already set in.... we can 'extend and pretend' only so much longer before the engineered collapse signal is sent and the 'rug is pulled out'.

Drugs aren't any different... 'gateway' is used not just to other forms of this drug, but to all 'drugs' of the empire... be it govt/military/intel/banking/religion/science/ etc.... that is what they are a gateway to... to corruption.. to the 'club' and all its members that choose to participate in these activities... that's what that recent interview was about...

Ronald Bernard High Finance Shocking Revelations (Dutch with Subtitles)


This is how they suck you in.... just pick your drug of choice... is it sex? violence? theft? start small and the addiction sets in and your appetite grows... like any empire, until you reach your limit and you collapse.... the smart ones learn to keep switching to a new drug... a more powerful one... and the biggest drug is POWER over others.... which leads you further down the rabbit hole... the dark one... not the one that leads you out of this Cave of Plato's reckoning.


ActionJackson's picture

A lot of people seem to think that everyone who smokes marijuana is a "stoner". These are obviously misinformed people. Not everyone who drinks is a drunk, not everyone who eats junk food is morbidly obese and not everyone who smokes weed is a lay-about, lazy stoner. Some people are capable of being smart about when and how they get high. Just like most people don't drink at work or on the road, most reasonable people would not be getting high at work or on the road either. There will always be people that overdo it with any drug.