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To the Concerned Citizens of the World


To the Concerned Citizens of the World, United States of America, and particulary
the Citizens of the State of Arizona, Representitives, Legislators, Executive, and
Judicial Officers:

  I bring to your attention a case of religious persecution in America.  This entire
document in electronic format has been presented to the Internet UseNet to the
appropriate NewsGroups;  it is also located on the WWW  (Web) at the site
given at the bottom of this document; as well faxes to the appropriate government
agencies:



 The "War on Drugs" has claimed yet another innocent casualty.  In 1993
the United States Congress passed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act,
which was signed into law as Public Law 103-141;  specifically mentioned in
that act was its enactment was prompted by a poor ruling of the Supreme
Court reguarding the Religious use of Peyote.  Further the Religious use of
Peyote is protected in the State of Arizona under (A.R.S 13-3402 B) as well
as the well written First Ordinance under Article XX of the Constitution of 
the State of Arizona, that is in close alliance with this United States first
statute regarding Religious Freedom:

A BILL FOR ESTABLISHING RELIGIOUS FREEDOM IN VIRGINIA, 1785

   By Thomas Jefferson 

Section I.
   Well aware that the opinions and belief of men depend on their own
   will, but follow involuntarily the evidence proposed to their minds; 
   that Almighty God hath created the mind free, and manifested his
   supreme will that free it shall remain by making it altogether
   insusceptible of restraint; that all attempts to influence it by
   temporal punishments, or burthens, or by civil incapacitations, tend
   only to beget habits of hypocrisy and meanness, and are a departure
   from the plan of the holy author of our religion, who being lord both
   of body and mind, yet chose not to propagate it by coercions on
   either, as was in his Almighty power to do, but to exalt it by its
   influence on reason alone; that the impious presumption of legislature
   and ruler, civil as well as ecclesiastical, who, being themselves but
   fallible and uninspired men, have assumed dominion over the faith of
   others, setting up their own opinions and modes of thinking as the
   only true and infallible, and as such endeavoring to impose them on
   others, hath established and maintained false religions over the
   greatest part of the world and through all time:....."

"....the opinions of men are not the object of civil government, nor under 
   its jurisdiction;  that to suffer the civil magistrate to intrude his powers 
   into the field of opinion and to restrain the profession or propagation of 
   principles on supposition of their ill tendency is a dangerous fallacy, 
   which at once destroys all religious liberty, because he being of course
   judge of that tendency will make his opinions the rule of judgement, and 
   approve or condemn the sentiments of others only as they shall square 
   with or suffer from his own; that it is time enough for the rightful purposes
  of civil government for its officers to interfere when principles break out into 
  overt acts against peace and good order; and finally, that truth is great and
   will prevail if left to herself; that she is the proper and sufficient antagonist
   to error,  and has nothing to fear from the conflict unless by human 
   interposition; disarmed of her natural weapons, free argument and
   debate; errors ceasing to be dangerous when it is permitted freely to 
   contradict them. " 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Following is a Statement to the Public that Leo Mercado read at
a public gathering at the commencement of his current Public Fast

Statement to the Public
Pinal County Courthouse
Florence, Arizona
January 19, 1996        9:00 a.m.

   I would first like to express our sincere appreciation for the
earnest efforts of the Pinal County Attorney's office and our
defense attorneys at resolving our current criminal proceedings
in a mutually agreeable manner.  We feel no ill will toward our public
servants in their performance of the jobs which we,  the people,
have mandated them to do.
  However,  several major infringements of our family's civil
rights remain outstanding and unexamined by the court.  First, do
we really want to live in a country where, with the help of the
local DARE officer, a child may be detained and interrogated with
no representation by either parent or school official?  Will we
allow our public servants to then suppress the identity of our
alleged accuser and administer a warrant based solely on false and
misleading information?  Do we really want our children to inherit
a legal system which will dictate who can practice what religion?
Furthermore, will we stand by while the scarament of our neighbor's
or our own spiritual path is literally held for ransom, while the
accused is offered a politically expedient means of absolving the
kidnapper's crime,  i.e., the release of the hostage in return for
a plea of guilty to other alleged violations?
  I, for one, choose not to leave my children the legacy of justice
by extortion as their national and spiritual inheritance.  Rather,
let us resolve any outstanding and valid criminal and civil issues
by throwing the full light of public inquiry into the dark closet
of an overzealous enforcement system.  Just as a SWAT team is not an
appropriate means of entering a peaceful family dwelling,  the
continued holding of our Sacrament, Peyote, is not an appropriate
tool to coerce the waiving of our rights to a fair trial by an 
impartial jury of our peers.  Therefore, we must first implicitly
and irrevocably demand the immediate return of our sacrament, which
after three months is in continuing danger of decay in storage.
Following this, separately and in good faith, we will come to a fair
resolve on any valid charges in or out of a court of law.  To 
clarify,  we cannot ethically tie the legal and protected use of
our Sacrament as a hindrance or motivation in resolving any valid
criminal charges we may face.
   In a letter to our defense attorneys,  Prosecutor Raymond Lamb
admitted that the state does not consider us to be criminals.  We
would then ask not to be treated as such unless and until we can
be proven to be so.
  Taking all of this into consideration, it is both an honor and
a duty to initiate a water or peyote only fast to pray for a just
and timely return of our sacrament.  I will glady and gratefully
end my fast when the Peyote being held is returned to our steward-
ship.  This is not a political manuever of a religious zealot but
the earnest and difficult prayer of an American who still believes
in the freedom our forefathers itended.  I pray for the redemption
of a country that wages war on itself and for the conscience of 
any person or government agency that can fuel this war with
either brute force or apathy.  Please remember, religous freedom
and the pursuit of happiness were the inspiration for the birth
of the greatest country in the history of the world.  May God
bless America and may we yet earn the title, "The land of the Free."

             Signature of
                 Leonard Mercado 
                     originally affixed here


 Greetings;  from dan&mary's Monastery-Hemporium.

 The above Fast is in progress at this time,  if you would like more
information on the above case please refer to our Web Site at
[URL: http://www.win.net/~enlightnr] .   It would be greatly
appreciated if as many people as possible would express their
concern over this injust practice of extortion to get a guilty plea.
FAX the Pinal County Attorney's office to the attention of 
Mr. Gilbert Figueroa; whom is persuing this case against the Mercado's, 
while holding their Legal Sacrament, (in Arizona) as ransom; in trying 
to extort a plea of guilty in possesion of 1/2 oz. of Marijuana, and 2 
ecstacy tablets.  

Attorney Mr Gilbert Figueroa:
      FAX number is: 1-(520)-868-6521  
     Voice Phone is: 1-(520)-868-6274.

also a FAX to Lyonel Ruiz at 1-(520)-487-2245 could help.

FAX your Senators and Congressmen to let them know this is not 
the form of Freedom and Justice that you support as a Citizen, and
that you would like them to review the matter of placing such an
extent of unlimited powers in the hand of this nation's police force;
wherein they may violate the inherent and inalienable rights of the
Citizens of this State and of this Nation.

The Mercado's Senator is Mr. Robert Chastain,  he as well as other
Senators may be reach by fax at:

Arizona Senate general FAX server: 1-(602)-542-3429

The Mercado's Representitives are Rebecca Rios and Harry Clarke.
 
Arizona Congress general FAX server: 1-(602)-542-4308

To call the Mercado's to express your support or concern:

1-(520)-363-5389

Thank you for you time, Please Act now as it has been brought
to our attention that this case has already drawn more media attention
and has required more Hours by the Prosecution and Defense than
any other case they have handled in the state of Arizona.  The Defense
feels more will help even more.

Let the Phones ring, lest you be the next to face this Persecution.

Thanks for you time,  and with your help may Liberty and Justice 
return to the America People.

Pax Vobiscum (Peace be with you)

dan of dan&mary
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
dan&mary's Monastery-HEMPorium of:  :         voice 1-(520)-485-2952 
 the Church of Cognizance           :          The Enlightener BBS
  HCR1 #4352; Pima, AZ.          \  :  /    FAX/BBS 1-(520)-485-2370 
                                  \ : / 
                                   \:/      Send E-Mail to:     
 Token Partners for over 22 years  /:\   enlightnr@enlightnr.win.net
                                    : 
Dedicated to promoting Cognizance, Family, and Religious Freedom !!!

   While some rely on unprovable lies and man-made Icons,
    we rely on the provably ancient religious reliance "Hemp";
     in all its forms and for all of its uses!!!!!

~~ WEB SITE NOW ONLINE AT [ http://www.win.net/~enlightnr]~~~~

PowerAccess v108 *  naturam expellas furca, tamen usque recurret 
(L.) you may drive out nature with a pitch fork, yet she will always return.  
(Horace, Epistles, i. 10)
      

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