Moral Low Ground


‘Operation Orange Fingers’: Seattle Police Fight Hempfest Munchies with Free Doritos

August 18, 2013 by Brett Wilkins in Crime & Punishment, Drugs with 2 Comments

Instead of citations, this year Seattle police are handing out free bags of Doritos chips at Hempfest, the world’s largest annual gathering of marijuana legalization advocates.

Retuers reports more than 85,000 marijuana enthusiasts are expected to attend this year’s Hempfest on each day from Friday through Sunday. But unlike last year’s event, at which dueling pro- and anti- marijuana legalization activists dominated the festivities, the mood at Hempfest 2013 is decidedly more mellow. Last November, voters in Washington and Colorado voted to legalize recreational marijuana use, the first states to do so. And while public smoking remains illegal, there was a decidedly mellower mood at this year’s event as attendees celebrated the state’s landmark achievement.

Unlike in years past, when Seattle police ran undercover ‘buy-and-busts’ and cited or arrested violators, this year officers displayed a refreshing sense of humor, fighting the munchies instead of marijuana by handing out 1,000 bags of Doritos tortilla chips as part of ‘Operation Orange Fingers.’ Seriously. A note affixed to each one-ounce bag– the same as the maximum legal allowable quantity of marijuana– directs stoners to the SPD’s ‘Marijwhatnow’ FAQ page, a guide to legal marijuana use in Seattle.

The note reads:

HEMPFESTERS! We thought you might be hungry. We also thought now might be a good time for a refresher on the do’s and don’ts of I-502.

Dont’s: Don’t drive while high. Don’t give, sell, or shotgun weed to people under 21. Don’t use pot in public. You could be cited but we’d rather give you a warning. Do’s: Do listen to Dark Side of the Moon at a reasonable volume. Do enjoy Hempfest.

Reminder: Respect your fellow voters and familiarize yourself with the rules of I-502 at

Operation Orange Fingers

“It feels great that instead of issuing citations for public smoking, the police are issuing Dorito bags,” longtime Hempfest director Vivian McPeak told Reuters.

Some SPD officers did express concerns that they could inhale second-hand pot smoke and then test positive for the drug, which is still very much illegal under federal law. But overall, ‘Operation Orange Fingers’ seems to be a smashing success.

“I think it’s kind of cool, to be perfectly honest, that they’re open and accepting of it,” a Hempfest attendee identified only by her first name, Erin, told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

“It’s beautiful, man,” one of Erin’s friends added. “It’s real nice.”

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  1. wildAugust 20, 2013 at 5:21 amReply

    Poor little Erin, thinks it is so cool to get a freebie, she probably doesn’t yet realize that from a few quick questions/answers and some photos a new fuzzy orange police file is created with Erin’s name on it.

    Reminds me of the old shooting fish in a barrel tactic used many years ago where the police (TX) advertised ‘you have won tickets to the football game, meet down at TX stadium on a certain day to receive them’. All the local people with outstanding warrants were mailed an invitation. The police were busy that day too.

    I can’t argue with the logic of the Do’s & Dont’s advertisement upon the package, and if I were as gullible as the inexperienced youngsters, I would even be inclined to think the police is actually looking out for me, telling it like it is. Hahaha but the reality is this is now a neo-conservative country where trickery reins. And even if the local police in charge of operation orange fingers is actually well meaning, the skeptic in me expects their neo-conservative counterparts hidden in the bushes, or simply flying a surveillance drone overhead are busy, busy, busy.

    The day they legalize all drugs, is the day 90% of this police state baby drama will cease. Should DUI drivers still be arrested, yes! Should would be killers & rapist still be arrested for poisoning people with drugs, yes! Should drug screen testing still be done for certain employees, yes! Should proper labeling every ingredient in all commodities be required, yes!

    There is lots of things the police are very important & respected for, but this whole war on drugs is a sick failure, because of the neo-conservative laws that made it so. These neo-conservative laws have turned the whole of the justice sector from the police, the judge, the jailor, etc. into just another racket, nearly as ridiculous as those they pursue.


    • Brett WilkinsAugust 22, 2013 at 10:09 amReplyAuthor

      A racket indeed!

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