Thursday, January 27, 2011

In YouTube's "Ask Obama" Contest, Drug-Legalizing Cop Comes in First Place (Press Release)

Obama Previously Laughed Off Marijuana Questions, But Can He Ignore a Cop?

WASHINGTON, DC --  A video question about legalizing drugs from a former deputy sheriff has come in first place in YouTube's "Your Interview with the President" competition, where users submitted and voted on questions to be posed to President Barack Obama.

Obama is scheduled to answer the top-voted questions today, Thursday, Jan. 27, at 2:30 PM EST in an interview that will be streamed live online at

The first-place question from MacKenzie Allen, the retired deputy sheriff and a currently a member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP), can be viewed at

“As a proud American with a career in law enforcement behind me, I find it frustrating that many elected officials pay little or no attention to the serious harms caused by our failed drug policies," said MacKenzie Allen, a retired deputy sheriff who served in Los Angeles, CA and King County (Seattle), WA.  "That's why I took advantage of what is likely my only opportunity to pose a question to our president, via the Internet. I’ve watched for decades as we throw good money after bad and, more importantly, life after life, at a 'War on Drugs' that is waged with counterproductive tactics and an overall flawed strategy. For the sake of those law enforcers who are still bravely on the front lines of the 'Drug War,' I hope our politicians will heed the call to finally discuss a new approach to drug control."

The Obama White House has previously asked citizens to submit and vote on questions via the web several times, with marijuana and drug policy issues rising to the top virtually every time. During a town hall meeting following one such round of voting in 2009, President Obama laughed off a marijuana legalization question, saying, "I don't know what this says about the online audience."

LEAP Executive Director Neill Franklin, a former Baltimore narcotics cop, responds, "The fact that these questions keep getting the most votes says that Americans are tired of our elected officials ignoring this important issue. Some of my best friends have been killed in line of fire while enforcing these senseless laws. It's not a laughing matter, and the president shouldn't treat it as such."

Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) represents police, prosecutors, judges, FBI/DEA agents and others who want to legalize and regulate drugs after fighting on the front lines of the "war on drugs" and learning firsthand that prohibition only serves to worsen addiction and violence. More info at

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CONTACT: Tom Angell (202) 557-4979 or media//at//leap//dot//cc


  1. if any group is going to end the war on drugs its going to be leap. i wish them the best of luck and am very glad they are fighting the good fight.

  2. I just watched Obama's response. He did laugh when the question was posed, but at least he answered the question. He admitted that this is a topic worth discussing whitch I'm guessing should be treated as a small victory.
    Keep up the good work LEAP, as ryco314 said if any group is going to end the war on drugs it's going to be LEAP.

  3. This is an important accomplishment for LEAP to get this voted #1 and then asked. It should generate mainstream media comment. Obama's answer will be dissected. Significantly he said that something constructive was going on in the White House now regarding drug policy -- he has created expectations. Congratulations McKenzie Allen, and Tom Angell for promoting the video. Onward!

  4. Here is a link to the YouTube video with the President's response.

  5. yeah every time anything to do with pot is in the media on any level everybody just laughs hahah it aint so funny when you get busted in sc with a joint walking down the street they take your drivers lic yes i said WALKING! its all a big joke unless its you that gets pinched lose your job cant get a job all cause you smoked a joint as far as im concerned the war against drugs is unconstitutional its just a war against the american people.its not so harmful to smoke pot its gettin busted thats realy harmful to your health.


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