Pubdate: Fri, 24 Mar 2006
Source: News & Reporter (SC)
Copyright: 2005 Chester News & Reporter
Author: Robert Sharpe


To the Editor:

Regarding Harvey Neiblum's thoughtful March 17 column, if health
outcomes determined drug laws instead of cultural norms marijuana
would be legal.

Unlike alcohol, marijuana has never been shown to cause an overdose
death, nor does it share the addictive properties of tobacco.
Marijuana can be harmful if abused, but jail cells are inappropriate
as health interventions and ineffective as deterrents.

The first marijuana laws were enacted in response to Mexican migration
during the early 1900s, despite opposition from the American Medical

Dire warnings that marijuana inspires homicidal rages have been
counterproductive at best. White Americans did not even begin to smoke
pot until a soon-to-be entrenched government bureaucracy began funding
reefer madness propaganda.

By raiding voter-approved medical marijuana providers in California,
the very same U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration that claims illicit
drug use funds terrorism is forcing cancer and AIDS patients into the
hands of street dealers.

Apparently marijuana prohibition is more important than protecting the
country from terrorism.

Robert Sharpe, MPA

Policy Analyst

Common Sense for Drug Policy

Washington, DC 
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