First, it’s essential to understand that your prosecution doesn’t define you as a person. Most likely, the DEA never bothered to speak with you before deciding to arrest and prosecute you. Even if they did, the decision to prosecute you had been made long before any conversation took place. Your prosecution is the result of a long and strategic process, one in which the very notions of truth and justice seem to no longer hold sway.
Federal law enforcement has been a unique development in our nation. Initially, we weren’t meant to have federal police forces. Policing the people was the responsibility of the states, while the federal government was primarily tasked with policing the states themselves. The federal government’s jurisdiction included matters related to national defense, foreign and interstate commerce, and ensuring the Constitution’s respect, but little else.
A land fraud scandal prompted President Roosevelt to assign his attorney general, Charles Bonaparte, the task of organizing an investigative service. Bonaparte began using Secret Service personnel for this purpose without notifying lawmakers. Once Congress caught wind of it, they quickly shut it down, arguing against the existence of a “secret police department.” Shortly after, in 1908, the Bureau of Investigation was founded within the Department of Justice. Its initial objective was to enforce the “White Slave Traffic Act,” also known as the Mann Act, which remains in effect today. As the name suggests, Black slavery was no longer an issue, as it had been made legal under the thirteenth amendment with a criminal conviction. Interestingly, Angola now has more slaves than ever in its long history as a plantation, but that’s another topic.
Initially, the FBI functioned more as a public relations firm, staging investigations and arrests to enhance its public image while potentially infringing on civil rights. The film “Killers of the Flower Moon” offers a glimpse into the Osage Indian Murders and the early agency’s role in identifying the culprits. However, it doesn’t delve into the atrocities committed by the FBI on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, which led to the incarceration of Leonard Peltier, America’s own version of Nelson Mandela. Peltier remains in prison despite federal authorities admitting that he was not present at the murder of two agents. Unfortunately, when individuals like Peltier or groups like Native Americans demand equal treatment, authorities often make examples of them, both then and now.
You are one of the many doctors targeted across America to serve as a testament to the DEA’s authority over the practice of medicine in the United States, regardless of what the Supreme Court may say. This isn’t the first time; consider the case of Worcester v. Georgia. In March of 1832, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that states did not have the right to impose regulations on Native American land. However, President Andrew Jackson refused to enforce this ruling. The Cherokee, who had fought alongside Americans for independence from Britain and had signed treaties guaranteeing their autonomy, were forcibly displaced from their homes in the Eastern United States to the harsh lands of Oklahoma after gold was discovered on Cherokee lands in Georgia. It’s a stark example of how lucrative interests often prevail over government decisions.
Now we have the DEA, established by President Richard Nixon, who, despite being known for above-board investigations, didn’t bother to hide the racial animus behind his administration’s policies. John Ehrlichman, later convicted for using federal agents to violate the civil rights of political opponents and those targeted by the federal government, candidly admitted to the motivations behind the “war on drugs.” He said, “The Nixon campaign in 1968, and the Nixon White House after that, had two enemies: the antiwar left and Black people. You understand what I’m saying? We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or Black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and Blacks with heroin, and then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities. We could arrest their leaders, raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did.” Unfortunately, this pattern of deception persists today.
Unable to halt the flow of fentanyl across our borders? Don’t blame the federal government; blame the doctors. These are the same doctors who prescribed medications labeled “less addictive” by the very government now condemning them.
Surgeon General Vivek Murthy admitted that providers were trained to consider pain as the “fifth vital sign” and were encouraged to use aggressive treatments to alleviate patients’ pain, stating, “Many of us were even taught – incorrectly – that opioids are not addictive when prescribed for legitimate pain.” He goes on to acknowledge, “The results have been devastating,” particularly for patients suffering from severe chronic pain and the physicians trying to help them. General Vivek added, “We arrived at this place with good intentions. Health care providers wanted to manage their patients’ pain, and opioids appeared to be a low-risk and highly effective means to do so.” This counters the government’s claims of scienter, the “guilty mind” requirement for felony convictions, which is now circumvented with a claim of “willful blindness.” What were you willfully blind to? Whatever the DEA deems as “administrative law.” Did you accept cash payments from some patients? Apparently, this is indicative of criminal behavior; if it can’t be traced, it must be stopped. Although not enshrined in legislation, this paraphrase encapsulates the outcome. Did patients travel to see you? Never mind your expertise that was hard to find. Were your waiting rooms crowded? That was enough evidence to label you a “pill mill.” Did you drive a nice car, like a vintage Rolls Royce? Dr. David Lewis did, although it was cheaper than a new Ford F150. Nevertheless, it was considered extravagant, and you must atone, as an example will be made.
Dr. Lewis, by all accounts, was a caring and conscientious doctor, but that didn’t protect him. Don’t think for a moment that they care about you as an individual, or your patients. They have a broader goal and will sacrifice individuals for the greater good. Even after Dr. Lewis was astonishingly acquitted of all charges, including a $454 million health care fraud claim, there were no apologies, no atonement, and no compensation for his losses. They enjoy absolute immunity, not only from civil prosecution but also from the law and even the constitution itself. As Juvenal asked, “Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” – Who will guard the guardians?
L. Joseph Parker is a distinguished professional with a diverse and accomplished career spanning the fields of science, military service, and medical practice. He currently serves as the chief science officer and operations officer, Advanced Research Concepts LLC, a pioneering company dedicated to propelling humanity into the realms of space exploration. At Advanced Research Concepts LLC, Dr. Parker leads a team of experts committed to developing innovative solutions for the complex challenges of space travel, including space transportation, energy storage, radiation shielding, artificial gravity, and space-related medical issues.