Pubdate: Sat, 22 Jan 2005
Source: Nelson Mail, The (New Zealand)
Copyright: 2005 Independent Newspapers Limited
Author:  Steven Wilkinson


Sir,  I believe Julian Crawford (Mailbox, January 19), underestimates
the dangers of the evil weed cannabis. If it wasn't so evil, why does
the Government spend over $20 million a year to maintain the
prohibition on cannabis?

In 1938, Harry Anslinger, the director of America's narcotics bureau,
spoke before Congress saying "Marijuana is the most violence-causing
drug in the history of mankind", and told of "coloureds with big lips
luring white women with jazz music and marijuana". Cannabis is so evil
that when the American Medical Association approached that same
committee to protest against outlawing a plant that had been used
successfully as a medicine for both adults and children for over a
hundred years in America, it was ignored.

It is so evil that before prohibition, cannabis was used in making
rope, clothing, high quality paper, paints and varnishes, gasoline,
medicines, food oils and, of course, recreation.  If cannabis was
harmless, then why wouldn't the New Zealand Government listen to it's
health committees, which recommend changes to the legal position of

The answer is, legalise with regulation, help the ones who have
trouble with the drug, and educate the children (cheaper than $20
million). Remember, there was no drug problem until they became illegal.

Steven Wilkinson,

Golden Bay
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