My name is Anna Foster; I am 25-years-old native Oklahoman. I grew up in Tulsa, went to Thomas Edison Preparatory High School, and attended youth group at the Greater Union Baptist Church. My dad is Will Foster and he is currently sitting in a Northern California jail awaiting extradition to Oklahoma.
His name might sound familiar to you, shortly after Christmas in 1995 a confidential informant claimed my dad sold him methamphetamine. When they raided the house they discovered my dad was not selling meth, he was treating his degenerative arthritis with marijuana. They found a 5 x 5 foot medical marijuana garden in our basement. The state of Oklahoma sentenced him to 93 years in prison- essentially a life sentence. After national media attention on his case the sentence was dropped to 20 years.
My dad has been in and out of prison for this charge for the last 14 years, but I really lost him before that. My dad has been in pain for most of my life due to the arthritis. Before he began to grow marijuana to treat his symptoms, he was prescribed a cocktail of painkillers and pharmaceuticals. He became moody and irritable, he was tired all the time, and his pain didn’t go away. Marijuana saved his life.
During my entire adolescence my dad was in jail. My mother was forced to support me on her much smaller income. When I graduated high school in Northern California, neither of my parents were there. I have been unable to attend college because I don’t qualify for financial aid and my dad is unable to help support me, I work full time now. My relationship with my dad was reduced to phone calls every couple months or so.
He served 4.5 years of his 20-year sentence before being released on parole. As a condition of the parole he was told to leave the state.
My dad moved to Northern California and I moved with him. This is the only time I ever got to know him. We watched Nascar races together every Sunday and would barbeque. It was an indescribable feeling to finally have a dad again. He finally was able to start living his life, and he loved California.
When his parole came up for review, the state of California refused to renew it- they would not pay to keep someone on parole that long for a marijuana charge. Now Oklahoma wants to extradite him back and put him in jail until 2015. He has been sitting in jail now for over a year. This is vindictive and horrifying. Why do I have to be punished my entire life because my dad doesn’t like what pharmaceutical drugs do to him?
I feel my family and I are continually being punished because my dad is a victim of a misguided drug war. Marijuana was the only drug he ever took that brought him back a quality of life. Why is he continuing to be punished for wanting to alleviate his pain, and enjoy being alive?
Oklahoma is a place where families and values are held sacred- one of the qualities I miss most about being there. I love my dad and wish that didn’t have to go through all of this. I want my family back.
I am asking for your help, please email or write Governor Brad Henry and ask them to drop the extradition on my dad. It is costly financially to both the states of California and Oklahoma, it is vindictive, and it is destroying my life.
You can email Governor Brad Henry at http://www.ok.gov/governor/message.php
You can send him a letter at:
Governor Brad Henry
State Capitol Building
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd Room 212
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
Thank you and God Bless,