Pubdate: Tue, 17 Oct 2000
Source: Anchorage Daily News (AK)
Copyright: 2000 The Anchorage Daily News
Author: Grady S. Wagner
Bookmark: Alaska clippings


Current prohibitions of alcohol and tobacco for underage users are 
ineffective because of lack of enforcement and parental attitudes and 
permissiveness. Example: buying little Johnny cigarettes because you would 
rather have him smoke at home than get in trouble at school or have to pay 
a $300 fine to the local court system. Let's not forget peer pressure often 
overrides everyone's (including parents') attempts to do what we think is 
right. It is no different with pot.

Proposition 5 allows adults, not children, to consume marijuana. We will 
allow adults to smoke pot in private without being busted by their 
employers or the state. We have impairment tests for people who drink and 
drive. This sort of test will work just as well for those who are too 
wasted to drive or work.

Industrial hemp production is real and offers many benefits. Space limits 
full discussion of this topic here. If it were legal to produce this plant 
in Alaska or elsewhere in the United States, market forces and people with 
entrepreneurial spirit and know-how would do the rest.

Think about the savings in your tax dollars if we stop enforcing Draconian 
marijuana laws against adults.

Proposition 5 is not perfect, but it's a really good start in the right 
direction. Let's approve this initiative now.

Grady S. Wagner

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