Pubdate: Thu, 03 Oct 2002
Source: Lubbock Avalanche-Journal (TX)
Copyright: 2002 The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal
Author: Basil Moss, M.D.


Re: The letter "Legalize Marijuana, Not Meth" (A-J, 9-24).

Friends have asked why I never write anything with which they can disagree. 
I strongly suspect I'm about to do that.

I support your correspondent whose most cogent letter clearly ratified the 
case for decriminalizing marijuana.

Forty years ago, when I served as a physician in Lubbock's drug crises 
center, I made my first public plea for that action. Now, as I consider the 
time, money and effort wasted in the attempt to control marijuana, I only 
wish my requests to legalize its use had been louder and longer.

My heart aches for those who were jailed for the use of this plant while 
others remained free to smoke and chew another weed, and drink the 
devastating produce of cultured grains and grapes.

Without deeply delving into the medical effects of marijuana, tobacco and 
alcohol, I dispute the claim that marijuana is the first step that leads to 
drug abuse.

In my opinion the drug, alcohol, so readily available to the uninitiated, 
for so many years is the leader by far in leading people into the use of 
other drugs. I believe that addiction is a personality trait and, 
therefore, if the first leaf of marijuana had never been harvested, there 
would still be as many drug addicts as we have today.

BASIL MOSS, M.D./Lubbock Via e-mail
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