Pubdate: Tue, 22 Jan 2002
Source: Waukesha Freeman (WI)
Copyright: 2002 The Waukesha Freeman
Contact: (262) 542-8259
Author: Michael Hault


It was with pleasure that I read the column by former Gov. Lee S.
Dreyfus, which you recently published. Such sensible thinking makes me
regret that he isn't currently in office.

The governor is certainly correct in his assessment that 1942 and 2002
are different eras. One has to realize that the young folks who
attended Woodstock in 1969 and smoked for pleasure are now entering
their 60s and seek the medical benefits of cannabis. I commend the
governor's call for research, and would point out that with more than
70 million Americans having smoked marijuana at some point, most
people already know of someone who is taking this herb to relieve one
ailment or another.

The governor is also correct in stating that we should not let the
Drug Enforcement Agency be the arbiters of legitimate use, as their
entire raison d'etre is to continue this failed prohibition, lock more
people up and increase their budget. The fact that the federal
government continues to let deadly drugs like Baycol and OxyContin
come to market, while imprisoning those who cultivate a plant that
grows wild around the world is illustrative of the power of big money
lobbying groups like those of the pharmaceutical industry.

The one error in the governor's letter occurs when he speaks of
development of a pill. Such a pill, Marinol, has been on the market
for some years. The problem with any pill is that persons who suffer
from AIDS, Cachexia, Chron' s Disease or the effects of chemotherapy
are often so nauseous that they cannot keep the pill down for the hour
or so it takes to become effective. Inhaling their medicine allows for
almost immediate relief, also allowing patients to much more finely
control their dosage.

I would like to close with the words of three of our most noted former

"If people let government decide which foods they eat and medicines
they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the
souls of those who live under tyranny." - Thomas Jefferson

"A prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which
our government was founded." - Abraham Lincoln

"Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has
gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves." -
Ronald Reagan

Michael Hault,
Received via e-mail 
- ---
MAP posted-by: Richard Lake