Drug Possession with Intent to Sell / by kevin murray

I don't particularly care for crimes of the "mind", in which the government takes the position that it is God, and therefore knows what you intend or notintend to do with a particular controlled substance.  The fact of the matter is that selling is selling and that possession is possession, but the government wants to carve out a huge middle ground in which by virtue of you having on your possession a certain specific arbitrary quantity of a controlled substance that this, by itself, is worthy enough of being charged with the "intent to sell".  It seems to me that just because you like to possess drugs in "bulk" or in a higher quantity than what one usage might require, does not, on its own, indicate that you are intending to sell it.  For instance, when I go to Sam's Club, Iby definition buy in bulk, with absolutely no intention of eating all that food at once, nor do I intend to sell or distribute it to a third party.  Why should a person be subject to more severe criminal penalties for purchasing or possessing drugs in bulk with a trumped up charge, such as intent to sell?  The fact of the matter is, if the government is so sure that this person is a seller or a dealer in this controlled substance, why not catch him in the actual act and be fair about it?


In general, crimes should never be about intent; they should instead be only about actual physical evidence and action, not supposition.  I realize that in some cases, such as in methamphetamine laboratories that the evidence may appear to be so overwhelming that the drugs being manufactured must be for sale, but if you aren't able to catch the perpetrators in the actual sale or distribution of the drug itself, that really isn't good enough.  The prosecutor and the State will say that they know the intent of the criminal, but in actuality, they don't, because the fact of the matter is, that people have intentions all the time, both good and bad, some of those intentions are not exercised, despite the appearances that they were going to be exercised.  People do change their minds; people do change their behavior, even at a great personal cost or at great personal peril.  Epiphanies can happen in an instance and through that epiphany a previous intention may be nullified.


The penalties for large drug possession of controlled substances in this country are high and stringent enough already that adding on subjective charges of an intent to sell, is an unfair burden to the defendant.  Intent as a crime is a very slippery slope with no benefits to most members of society at all.  The most likely beneficiaries are policemen that don't do their work diligently, intelligently, or suffer from a woeful lack of being able to outthink criminals, and the prosecutorial arm of the Government that utilizes additional charges to make their role so much easier in getting the alleged perpetrator to plead down to a lesser charge.


Basically, just because you intend to sell something, doesn't mean that you're actually going to find a willing buyer, or even if you do that you will receive in return the terms that your desire, and consequently in the end, you might not even make the sell.  After all, businesses fail all the time for lack of sales, even with the intent to sell, and if you don't sell it, that shouldn't be a crime because it sure the heck isn't a sale.