Pubdate: Wed, 31 May 2000
Date: 05/31/2000
Source: Mountain Xpress (NC)
Author: Timothy "Anonymous" Leonard

Well, so much for satire. It blows my mind that so many people could
read my letter, "Hurrah for the Pot Police" [April 26] and not see, or
even taste, the sarcasm oozing out of every sentence. Starting with
the words "brave" and "courageously" to describe the terrifyingly
totalitarian actions of 25 adult police officers frisking traumatized
children while searching like well-trained yet brain-dead dope dogs
for a benevolent herb that the Corporate Police State doesn't want

Did all of you actually read the article regarding the raid of Hart
Squire and his family at their Reems Creek farm? Even the most
brainwashed, DARE-educated, pot-fearing, fundamentalist reactionary
could not have seriously condoned such a blatant violation of civil
liberty, human dignity and personal privacy.

Then how on earth do such extreme violations of basic human rights
keep on occurring day after day after day? Can we stop a minute and
think about this? Do you think this "war" doesn't affect you? ...

Did you ever stop to wonder why? Why is this plant illegal? Why does
the Drug Enforcement [Administration] spend, according to its own
reports, $13.5 million of our money every year to "eradicate
marijuana"? Why does the same agency ladle out millions more for this
purpose to local jurisdictions, including the Asheville Police
Department and the Park Service? It is estimated that the entire
effort costs American taxpayers half a billion dollars a year... Why?

Well, let's just think about who might not want this herb spreading

Where should I begin? The prison industry, the police industry, the
pharmaceutical industry, the alcohol industry, the tobacco industry,
the petroleum industry, the plastics industry, the tree-based paper
and timber industries, the cotton and synthetic textile industries
and, of course, the religion industry (a.k.a. the Church).

The prisons would empty out if the "war on drugs" were ended. As it
is, jails are a booming industry. And the police, what would they do
all day? ...

Parallels to other historical police states and authoritarian regimes
may be considered extreme. But if you pay attention, you will be aware
that there is a huge segment of the population that is ostracized,
intimidated, discriminated against, urine-tested, persecuted and/or
incarcerated for their choice of medicine. Yes, medicine; cannabis is
a medicine. To classify and thus stigmatize marijuana as a "drug"
ignores both its physiological effects and its chemical makeup. ...

Imagine ... a garden, perhaps private, perhaps communal, where you
could grow the medicines you need for the cost of seed. Medicines for
your body and spirit. In this garden of inspiration, you could explore
your potential for health, well-being and, dare I say it in the midst
of a political diatribe, higher consciousness! ...

Careful what you grow: They may be watching. Consider this: Over
two-and-a-half million harmless citizens have been arrested for
cannabis just since Big Bill took office. So much for getting a baby
boomer in the White House. Drug-war stats are staggering. I'll leave
it to groups like NORML (check them out at to show you
the carnage. Which brings me to the practical edge of this letter.

Let's vote these authoritarian, war-mongering half-wits out of office.
The Republican and Democratic parties are an extinction waiting to

Rule one: Never again vote for the lesser of two evils, or against the
dumber of two stupids; vote your conscience. Don't vote for the
eco-cidal corporate police state, which both the Republicans and
Democrats administer. Don't let your mind be managed and your
decisions be determined by the mass media. ... Look at the
alternatives and confront the candidates. One party for whom personal
liberty is still a primary consideration is the Libertarian Party. An
intelligent and compassionate woman (and mother) named Barbara Howe is
running for governor. Ending the drug war is a very solid plank in her
platform. Vote for her...

Will cannabis hemp revolutionize our economy as an ecological source
of paper, food, fuel and textiles? For our environmental integrity and
well-being, I hope so. Will its psychedelic and medicinal cousin be
allowed back in the garden? For our spiritual integrity and
well-being, I hope so. Will the present corporate police state be
demolished and replaced with a true democracy? Not if we continue to
vote for the least repulsive candidate instead of someone who actually
represents us and protects our rights.

Many of you may agree with a bumper sticker I saw the other day. It
said, "If voting could really change anything, it would be illegal."
Well, strange as it seems, it can change things (if you don't vote
Republican or Democrat). ... Political alternatives exist:
Libertarian, Green and Natural Law. Organize, educate and, when the
time comes, vote!

Timothy "Anonymous" Leonard,