Statement to DEA
September 30, 2003
I, David P. West, do hereby relinquish my DEA license for the handling of a controlled substance (cannabis). ╩In doing so, I am concluding the operations of the Hawaii Industrial Hemp Project which I was retained to oversee.
I've been asked to explain why the work is concluding.
In 1999, when then-Governor Cayetano signed Act 305, there was optimism that the U.S. would take action similar to Canada and several other countries to modify its drug laws recognizing the difference between hemp and marijuana and allowing hemp ╩agriculture. ╩It would be difficult to find such optimism today. ╩Clearly there is a strong and entrenched opposition to hemp at high levels in the Federal government. ╩My experience with the Hawaii Hemp Project warns me that the opposition will employ any means to prevent any change in our current concept of or approach to "controlled substances."
Earlier this year, in a report to the State, I indicated that the hemp work would not proceed unless I were in good standing with the proper license in hand. The license for June 2002 to May 2003 finally arrived in April 2003 and was set to expire in May 2003, one month later. ╩I reapplied for the 2003-2004 period. ╩It is now October, 2003, and no license has been forthcoming.
It is apparent that the DEA intends to fight a war of attrition by administrative delay in order to force its agenda on the States. ╩There are other indications that this is so, for example, the attempt to ban all hemp food products from the U.S..
In this game, I do not wish to play. ╩I quit in protest.╩
At this time I surrender all former copies of the licenses and shall proceed at this time to destroy the remaining controlled substance (seed/germplasm).
This September 30th, 2003, I resign and relinquish my license to handle controlled substances.
License number RW025374
David P. West
witnessed John Polomo, ╩diversion investigator, DEA-Honolulu, Hawaii
Editor's note: The original letter was written in longhand. This digital transcript was prepared by Dr. David West from a carbon copy.