Pubdate: Mon, 23 Jul 2007
Source: Oregonian, The (Portland, OR)
Copyright: 2007 The Oregonian
Author: Allan Erickson


Regarding your editorial, "Vernonia ponders pot again" (July 17), it
seems that the issue of marijuana has resurrected itself -- in abundance.

Kevin Mannix is attempting to eliminate the Oregon Medical Marijuana
Program, Associated Oregon Industries is trying to undermine the
medical marijuana program, and the feds are, well, anti-pot nuts.

Having cannabis illegal (at any level) criminalizes the estimated
300,000 or more Oregon consumers of this ancient plant. Without a
single recorded death through consumption, cannabis is truly -- as
stated by the Drug Enforcement Administration's own administrative law
judge Francis Young in 1988 -- "one of the safest therapeutic
substances known to man."

If Vernonia elementary school Principal Aaron Miller had been
consuming alcohol, would he have been cited? Would his job security be
in question? No.

The disconnect from reality comes not from those who consume cannabis
but from a society that has swallowed more than seven decades of
bigoted propaganda and accepted it as truth.

Oregon really needs to be the first state to truly legalize this plant
in all its myriad forms.

Allan Erickson

Drug Policy Forum of Oregon

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