Cannabis Prohibition is a Human Rights Violation

Meet the Man Who Wants to Stop Sick People from Using Medical Marijuana

Written by Jeff Siegel
Posted May 31, 2016

hrnowDonald Trump seems to be in support of legalization for medical marijuana.

But that could soon change. And not because he's recently had a bad experience with the plant or the folks who rely on it for their medication.

No, I suspect Trump could have a change of heart now that one of his wealthiest fundraisers is also one of the most dangerous prohibitionists on the planet.

Who is Mel Sembler?

Mel Sembler is a former U.S. Ambassador to Italy and is known in political circles as a very successful fundraiser. As a result, he's made a lot of friends in Washington. But he's also made a lot of enemies. Particularly a generation of former abused children that were once imprisoned in a drug treatment facility he founded in 1976.

The operation was called Straight, Inc., and according to Maia Szalavitz from, it was a haven for child abusers.

At all of Straight’s facilities, state investigators and/or civil lawsuits documented scores of abuses including teens being beaten, deprived of food and sleep for days, restrained by fellow youth for hours, bound, sexually humiliated, abused and spat upon.

According to the L.A. Times, California investigators said that at Straight teens were “subjected to unusual punishment, infliction of pain, humiliation, intimidation, ridicule, coercion, threats, mental abuse… and interference with daily living functions such as eating, sleeping and toileting.”

Now apparently, all the Straight programs were funded by a nonprofit called the Straight Foundation, which still exists, but under the name Drug Free America Foundation.

Oh what a tangled web Mel weaved when first he chose to fund his sick misdeed.

$10 Million Dollars

To this day, Mel Sembler continues to be a very wealthy and persuasive individual fighting hard to keep sick people from getting the medication they need.

As an outspoken prohibitionist, Sembler has not only continued to defend the infamous tragedy that was Straight, Inc. but he's even vowed to raise $10 million to fight cannabis legalization in Florida. What a humanitarian!

And now it turns out that Muculent Mel was recently named a vice chairman of the Trump Victory Committee.

Now understand, Sembler is no amateur when it comes to fundraising. In 2000, he actually raised $21.3 million at a single fundraising dinner. So don't think for a second that Trump won't be looking to do Mel Sembler any favors if he can manage to raise that kind of scratch for the Trump campaign.

And don't doubt for a moment that one of those favors will be to help him put the kibosh on legalization.

This IS a Human Rights Violation

According to Sembler, cannabis is not medicine. And being a successful real estate developer and shill for the Republican party certainly qualifies him to make such a determination. But I suspect the parents of Charlotte Figi would disagree.

You see, not long ago, a young girl named Charlotte Figi was diagnosed with an extreme form of epilepsy. By the time she was three, she was having about 300 seizures a week. And that was with conventional treatment.

Frustrated, Charlotte's parents looked into getting hold of a special kind of medical marijuana that another child with this form of epilepsy was also using.

Charlotte began taking the medication, and almost immediately, her symptoms improved. Today, she has about four seizures per month. The good folks who developed the strain she takes today named the strain Charlotte's Web.

The truth is, there has been a significant amount of evidence to suggest that certain strains of medical marijuana can be successful in treating some forms of childhood epilepsy.

Cannabis treatments have also been proven to help folks with PTSD, arthritis, chronic pain relief, Parkinson’s disease, Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and a whole variety of other illnesses and diseases.

Now I don't know Mel Sembler personally, but I know that his quest to deny sick people their medicine is nothing short of a human rights violation. And while Mel isn’t the only one looking to continue this human rights violation, he’s certainly one of the most influential. Therefore, his efforts must be countered with the efforts of those who embrace compassion, tolerance and rational behavior.

The bottom line is that any individual who seeks to deny sick people their medication - and then gleefully boast about it - is an individual that needs to be stopped. Especially one who profited off a “drug treatment” operation that allegedly kidnapped and abused children.

Now while I often suggest investing in legal cannabis companies to thwart guys like Sembler, today I suggest backing the groups that are actively fighting Mel Sembler and his army of prohibitionists. One in particular is United for Care, an organization that has been working tirelessly to ensure that folks in Florida who wish to use medical marijuana to treat their medical conditions can do so, legally. You can read more about this organization here:

And in case you’re unsure whether or not Mel Sembler is right to deny sick people access to medical cannabis, watch this video about Charlotte Figi.